Living in enlightenment

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Eutychus
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Living in enlightenment

Postby Eutychus » Wed May 24, 2017 12:01 pm

LU is focused guiding for seeing there is no real, inherent 'self' - what do you understand by this?
I believe there is no actor or doer in life but because of cultured practices it is very comforting to own situations and circumstances happening in our experiences.

What are you looking for at LU?
I need guidance in understanding how life is to be and not to be with this new understanding that has been proven before my eyes.

What do you expect from a guided conversation?
Comfort and identity with similar minded individuals. I want to understand how my experiences relate to others in my family and how i may be of assistance to them.

What is your experience in terms of spiritual practices, seeking and inquiry?
I have been a devoted christian for the better part of my life and at some point i decided i needed to know God beyond stories and see Him as He presents himself to me in my present moment. I felt guidance of a dark time yet to face me once I chose to surrender. Truly the recent months have been taunting as situations turned from bad to worse. Even in that moment, I felt peace unexplainable which guided me to see the vanity of my pain as it wasn't clearly understood by anyone I reach out to or who reaches out to me. They are many stories but no reality in them. I finally became tired of the studying and turned to meditation music and landed on the enlightenment app on the playstore. There is great peace even in my situations having enjoyed the app since its insights have been enlightening and acceptable with how I feel about my experiences.

On a scale from 1 to 10, how willing are you to question any currently held beliefs about 'self?: 11

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JonathanR
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Re: Living in enlightenment

Postby JonathanR » Fri Jun 23, 2017 10:46 am

Hello Eutychus,

Is this the name I should use?

Welcome to Liberation Unleashed. My name is Jon and I guide here.

What we do on these guiding threads is have a conversation, a chat as between friends if you like? I want you to feel completely at ease and comfortable working with me and free to ask any questions you like.

Having said this, once we get going, on the whole I will tend to ask a series of quite deliberate questions and it will be up to you to examine your own experience to find out what is true or not.
I believe there is no actor or doer in life but because of cultured practices it is very comforting to own situations and circumstances happening in our experiences.
Interesting. Does that mean that there is an owner of experiences?
I need guidance in understanding how life is to be and not to be with this new understanding that has been proven before my eyes.
That is also interesting but could you please let me know more about this new understanding? Did you mean by 'new understanding' of there being no actor or doer?

Comfort and identity with similar minded individuals. I want to understand how my experiences relate to others in my family and how i may be of assistance to them.
There are certainly quite a few people who have seen no self and there is a growing community. Guiding conversations here tend to focus on the immediate experience of the individual being guided. This is very necessary for the inquiry to work. It may be better to discuss the impact on or assistance of others in the latter stages of this inquiry, where it is likely to become clearer in any case.

Looking forward to hearing from you,

warm regards,

Jon

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Eutychus
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Re: Living in enlightenment

Postby Eutychus » Fri Jun 23, 2017 9:20 pm

Hi Jon, thank you for being my guide. Yes, Eutychus is my name.

In my understanding I beleive there is no individual owner of experiences ie.doer but as part of the whole,there is experiencing taking place. Beyond this understanding is a chunk of uncertainities. Top of that list being whether I am correct with my intrepretation of life and knowing what then is expected of me in the light of this perspective.

my experience of no self/ uncertain self arised when I was in need to fix up the things I felt were getting out of hand in my life; my relationships, my academics and my beleifs. On embarking on this journey I decided to stay true to what I found most convinving and appealing to me as an individual and hoping to forgive myself if I am caught up in the wrong path

Coming from a staunch christian background, I found hope in the promise of eternity as promised by Jesus, who was most vivid in my early childhood years. Growing up I experienced extra ordinary moments where I strongly beleived that God was speaking to me and showing me His undivided attention on my life. Sort of as a guide would, because of this I found myself in leadership positions in school and church sorrounding preaching the gospel. I became a pastor to many of my peers until a point when I wanted to know more of my relationship with Jesus. Consequently I felt a dark looming feeling that things would turn out strangely if I embarked on that search. I felt prepared for my quest and truly as soon as I resolved to silence my assumptions and move foward with only what I felt I was certain to be true of my life, all hell broke loose.

My schoolwork failed, I left church, my relationships took an ugly turn and I ended up being secluded, almost a loner. In this period I also found myself reading vastly on experiences with God and the more I read the more I felt enlightened. Day by day my perspective of life changed and I could feel God in almost all things around me. So real was the feeling of an ever present guide leading me from situation to another, in such a profound way. Nonetheless my social life remained a miss as I began drug use. At the time, my understanding was that i was experiencing the ego death.

I was so excited to find the enlightening quotes app during the period and once i was done with the app I felt a burden fall away. Its words struck right in and I felt free.Now I am feeling uncertain because nothing is good enough to hold on to. I see the passivity of all things and experiences. I dont discriminate against any of them. I hold no expectations for the future. Unexplainable peace runs in and out of me. I see life, I cant claim ownership of it, I feel that I am but experiencing without any form of control.

What to do?

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JonathanR
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Re: Living in enlightenment

Postby JonathanR » Sat Jun 24, 2017 7:01 am

Hi Eutychus,

Thank you very much for sharing your story with me. .
In my understanding I beleive there is no individual owner of experiences ie.doer but as part of the whole,there is experiencing taking place. Beyond this understanding is a chunk of uncertainities. Top of that list being whether I am correct with my intrepretation of life and knowing what then is expected of me in the light of this perspective.
You speak of 'understanding' that there is no doer. And you mention that this is a belief. And then you wonder if you are correct in your interpretation?

Perhaps I may assist you in looking at this?
Here is rather a direct but important question:

Please tell me what is your current understanding of what 'you' are?


Kind regards,

Jon

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Eutychus
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Re: Living in enlightenment

Postby Eutychus » Sat Jun 24, 2017 9:32 pm

Please tell me what is your current understanding of what 'you' are?
For me to answer who I am I need to look at the object me. I can only find the awareness that this moment is happening. I witness now happening. The witnessing differs however from how one would watch a movie, I feel a certain ownership and passive participation to the witnessing that occurs. I dont feel exempt from the witnessed. All other particulars seem to change but for the awareness that now is happening.

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JonathanR
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Re: Living in enlightenment

Postby JonathanR » Sun Jun 25, 2017 8:40 am

For me to answer who I am I need to look at the object me. I can only find the awareness that this moment is happening. I witness now happening. The witnessing differs however from how one would watch a movie, I feel a certain ownership and passive participation to the witnessing that occurs. I dont feel exempt from the witnessed. All other particulars seem to change but for the awareness that now is happening.
Thank you very much. I appreciate your answer.

Is it that there is an experience of 'I' 'witnessing' 'now happening'?

This may already have been explored but is it possible to find an 'I' that does 'witnessing'? Or that is in any way separable from the witnessing?

Is there a 'now happening' that is perceived by an entity that is separate from it'?

love,

Jon

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JonathanR
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Re: Living in enlightenment

Postby JonathanR » Sun Jun 25, 2017 5:27 pm

Hello again Eutychus,

I dont feel exempt from the witnessed
Reading this line of yours again it may well be that you have already answered the questions I asked. if so, Please forgive the repetition. It's important for me to be clear before we move on.

many thanks,

Jon

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Eutychus
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Re: Living in enlightenment

Postby Eutychus » Sun Jun 25, 2017 8:03 pm

Thank you very much Jon.

Could it be that I have this understanding rooted mentally and not as a result of direct experience. I ask this because I cant help shake the feeling that I need to do something about where I am at. Dont get me wrong, I feel an incredible amount of peace in every situation I find myself in, however random but none of it is satisfactory. It is as though I am missing it. As though I am missing life as it unfolds. It is disheartening at times and I wake up hoping this is the day I get to fill in the blanks and the next day comes . Over and over

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JonathanR
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Re: Living in enlightenment

Postby JonathanR » Mon Jun 26, 2017 7:14 am

Hello Eutychus,
Could it be that I have this understanding rooted mentally and not as a result of direct experience.
It might be. I don't know. But we can address this for sure as we go along.

Try a little exercise to do with hearing. Sit quietly where you will not be disturbed. Begin to notice sounds. These could be quiet, such as breathing, slightly louder, such as the noise of a fridge or louder still, such as voices nearby, traffic or birdsong. Simply notice all that is heard but do not strain to do this, it can be quite relaxed.

Now, examine the experience happening right now. What is going on? Is there an experience of 'ears hearing' or of 'me hearing', or is it simply the hearing?

Is there an experience of some entity doing hearing?
I ask this because I cant help shake the feeling that I need to do something about where I am at.
It doesn't seem to follow, necessarily, that this feeling disappears upon seeing that there is no self. It might or might not. There might or might not appear to be more to do, investigate, uncover.
Dont get me wrong, I feel an incredible amount of peace in every situation I find myself in, however random but none of it is satisfactory. It is as though I am missing it. As though I am missing life as it unfolds. It is disheartening at times and I wake up hoping this is the day I get to fill in the blanks and the next day comes . Over and over
How is that missing of life happening? Could it be that there is an idea that becasue there is no self, there is nobody or nothing that could engage with life or express anything? Tell me more about this.


love

Jon

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Eutychus
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Re: Living in enlightenment

Postby Eutychus » Mon Jun 26, 2017 3:47 pm

Hi Jon
Try a little exercise to do with hearing. Sit quietly where you will not be disturbed. Begin to notice sounds. These could be quiet, such as breathing, slightly louder, such as the noise of a fridge or louder still, such as voices nearby, traffic or birdsong. Simply notice all that is heard but do not strain to do this, it can be quite relaxed.

Now, examine the experience happening right now. What is going on? Is there an experience of 'ears hearing' or of 'me hearing', or is it simply the hearing?

Is there an experience of some entity doing hearing?
I tried this exercise in my room and I could hear cars driving by. As an experience there is no distinction between the objects; the vehicle, the sound, the hearer, the hearing and the road. It is as though they all work together as one to create the experience of hearing the cars driving by. During the experience I am able to identify with my body as the object allowing me to experience the hearing but not the embodiment of me.

I am aware of my existence in the experience but not as an entity, as a witness of it all.
How is that missing of life happening? Could it be that there is an idea that becasue there is no self, there is nobody or nothing that could engage with life or express anything? Tell me more about this.
I dont feel satisfied with the experiences I go through. I feel that there is much more to be aware of in these experiences.An urge to be able to somehow participate more in life and not to see it as though it is happening from a book of memories just there to be witnessed.

I beleive life should be equally engaging as it is adventurous. Not just a series of experiences unfolding with a mysterious flow.

Thanks

Eutychus

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JonathanR
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Re: Living in enlightenment

Postby JonathanR » Mon Jun 26, 2017 6:21 pm

Hello Eutychus,

During the experience I am able to identify with my body as the object allowing me to experience the hearing but not the embodiment of me.

I am aware of my existence in the experience but not as an entity, as a witness of it all.
Would you say that 'my body as the object allowing me to experience' is conceptualisation ABOUT the experience of hearing but not the actual hearing?

Try it again for a while. In the direct experience of hearing is it possible to find any explanation of what is going on, other than whatever appears as thoughts about it?

In the immediate sensation of hearing is there anything to be found other than the heard?
I believe life should be equally engaging as it is adventurous. Not just a series of experiences unfolding with a mysterious flow.
It sounds here as though you have come across and contemplated the idea of 'life unfolding with a mysterious flow' and found it to be an unpalatable idea? And somehow there is an interpretation that it amounts to a kind or nihilist or soulless passivity. Am I correct? Please let me know. It's most important that we should get this untangled.


Thank you,

Jon

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Eutychus
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Re: Living in enlightenment

Postby Eutychus » Mon Jun 26, 2017 10:25 pm

Hi Jon
It sounds here as though you have come across and contemplated the idea of 'life unfolding with a mysterious flow' and found it to be an unpalatable idea? And somehow there is an interpretation that it amounts to a kind or nihilist or soulless passivity. Am I correct? Please let me know. It's most important that we should get this untangled.
Yes, as you have pointed out I am having a hard time letting go of the assumption that life has a guided purpose that we ought to follow or live by. Not realizing my expectation above leaves me feeling unsatisfied as though I am missing the point.
Would you say that 'my body as the object allowing me to experience' is conceptualisation ABOUT the experience of hearing but not the actual hearing?
I most certainly agree with you. There is no evidence to point out that my conceptualisation is factual but just a means of trying to describe the experience; hearing.

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JonathanR
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Re: Living in enlightenment

Postby JonathanR » Wed Jun 28, 2017 2:25 pm

Hello Eutychus,
Yes, as you have pointed out I am having a hard time letting go of the assumption that life has a guided purpose that we ought to follow or live by. Not realizing my expectation above leaves me feeling unsatisfied as though I am missing the point.
I understand. There can be a significant feeling of disappointment as some much-loved beliefs collapse or are at least thrown open to question. Often in guiding, it is about encouraging people to relax sufficiently to see that 'they' will not be harmed or destroyed or negated by the process.

But what if the dropping of all expectations could allow an unexpected freedom that is all about engagement? The idea of being 'the witness' can still cast a subtle self in a relatively peaceful but passive role as disengaged observer. An 'I' that could 'do nothing'.

What if there has never been and could never be anything other than engagement in this mysterious flow?

love

Jon

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Eutychus
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Re: Living in enlightenment

Postby Eutychus » Thu Jun 29, 2017 6:35 am

Hey Jon,
But what if the dropping of all expectations could allow an unexpected freedom that is all about engagement?
I hear you man,it is not easy to let go of expectations, sometimes I fail to realize that I am putting expectations into situations or processes. Until I draw them to my attention or have them drawn to my attention, they remain part of me, even then I at times fail to have the strength to abandon them when realized. Top of that list is the expectation to have a bright future, I have nothing wrong with this thoughts apart from the fact that choosing what kind of experiences you want to have acts as a barrier to Tao.
An 'I' that could 'do nothing'.
This is the closest description of how I have been feeling about myself in situations. Incredibly sad.
The idea of being 'the witness' can still cast a subtle self in a relatively peaceful but passive role as disengaged observer.
I feel as though referring to myself as a witness creates indirectly a doer being that can be pointed at to refer to being me. From our discussions I have been able to see this subtle but incredibly powerful thought process.

There is no being that may be referred to as 'me'.

I choose to trust the process.

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JonathanR
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Re: Living in enlightenment

Postby JonathanR » Thu Jun 29, 2017 10:50 am

Hi Eutychus,
I hear you man,it is not easy to let go of expectations, sometimes I fail to realize that I am putting expectations into situations or processes. Until I draw them to my attention or have them drawn to my attention, they remain part of me, even then I at times fail to have the strength to abandon them when realized. Top of that list is the expectation to have a bright future, I have nothing wrong with this thoughts apart from the fact that choosing what kind of experiences you want to have acts as a barrier to Tao.
I see what you are saying. Let's look at this bit:
I fail to realize that I am putting expectations into situations or processes. Until I draw them to my attention or have them drawn to my attention, they remain part of me,

There is no 'you'. Never was, never will be. 'You' didn't 'fail to realize' anything. Expectations appear, somehow. Did a 'self' put them there? What is the experience?

Do 'you' 'draw them to your attention'? (Or is that a thought about what happens?) What is the actual experience? Is there an experience of 'yourself drawing expectations to your attention'? Or is it that somehow it is just noticed that there are expectations?

Are thoughts 'yours'?
An 'I' that could 'do nothing'.
This is the closest description of how I have been feeling about myself in situations. Incredibly sad.
Don't worry. Things will change.
I feel as though referring to myself as a witness creates indirectly a doer being that can be pointed at to refer to being me. From our discussions I have been able to see this subtle but incredibly powerful thought process.
Great! yes. We will look at 'doer' soon.

love

Jon


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