I would request Matthew as guide

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Luisa
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I would request Matthew as guide

Postby Luisa » Tue Aug 08, 2017 9:15 am

LU is focused guiding for seeing there is no real, inherent 'self' - what do you understand by this?
The mode of seeing reality based on the existence of a subject is deluded.

What are you looking for at LU?
Taking the final and non return step. The shift has already happen but I still doubt if I have understood only in a conceptual level. It's not a big doubt but a kind of weak residue lets say, as soon as I talk about it it disappears.

What do you expect from a guided conversation?
A guide who has really crossed the gate and can be direct to dismantle my delusions without hesitation. I expect a balanced conversation between pushing and freedom to continue up to the end. But as far as I know about LU you all do a great job.

What is your experience in terms of spiritual practices, seeking and inquiry?
I've been practicing buddhism seriously since 2012, three years Goenka's Vipassana (attending various retreats and practicing every day) , two years Mahayana (studying philosophy and performing Sadhanas) and two years Vajrayana having completed some practices. At the end of 2016 I met Jackson Peterson on Facebook, when the shift or biggest delusion fell apart. After that I've been some months in solitary individual retreat studying Dudjom Lingpa's Dzogchen texts with Allan Wallace and following some JP's pointing.

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

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Matthew
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Re: I would request Matthew as guide

Postby Matthew » Tue Aug 08, 2017 9:46 am

Hello Luisa and welcome!

It is great to have you here!
Since you are already familiar with LU, I will spare some of the introductory words, just some house keeping rules:

1. Let us keep up the momentum by posting at least daily.
If you cannot answer within a day, please let me know. I would do so as well.

2. Put aside all other teachings, philosophies, rituals, practices, books/reading and so on for the remainder of this investigation. Really put all your effort and attention in to seeing this reality, as it is. If you have a daily and essential meditation practice, it is fine to continue that.

3. Always answer from actual experience (aka direct or raw experience) which means what is not derived from 'thinking' but from looking at what is here right now: smell, taste, sound, sensation, colour and observed thoughts.

4. Could you please learn to use the quote function to highlight questions being answered:
http://liberationunleashed.com/nation/v ... ?f=4&t=660



So let us start right away, shall we? :-)


To the initial questions, you've answered:
The shift has already happen but I still doubt if I have understood only in a conceptual level.
Can you please tell me about this shift?
What exactly happened?
Did something change after it?

It's not a big doubt but a kind of weak residue lets say
What do you suspect is missing, or needed to happen for this residue to be cleared away?




Looking forward to your reply!


Sending love,
Matthew
First there is a mountain,
Then there is no mountain,
Then there is.

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Luisa
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Re: I would request Matthew as guide

Postby Luisa » Tue Aug 08, 2017 2:34 pm

So let us start right away, shall we? :-)
Sure :)
Can you please tell me about this shift?
What exactly happened?
Did something change after it?
1. I commented on a JP's post on Facebook where he was accusing Namkhai Norbu of being gradualist. My comment carried certain animosity but he didn't pay attention to the negativity and used the direct pointing for me to see what it is. After maybe two brief replays each, I caught it. After that I smiled along three or four days, it was a kind of strange mostly because my grandma just passed away and I was taking care of granddad those days who was profoundly sad. I felt lighter and since then I don't take things personally well, since then I haven't experience situations in a heavy or negative way. The ability of seeing other's emotions has increased.
What do you suspect is missing, or needed to happen for this residue to be cleared away?
I feel is a lack of confidence, a sort of fear to show pride or superiority. What needs to happen maybe is definitely stop believing the thoughts.

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Matthew
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Re: I would request Matthew as guide

Postby Matthew » Tue Aug 08, 2017 9:24 pm

What needs to happen maybe is definitely stop believing the thoughts.
Let us work with this!


I have some questions for you. While answering them -as always here- I want you to not rely on knowledge or previous insights that you had by means of meditation. I want you to take a fresh look! Look at what presents itself right here and right now while working with these questions!


Where are thoughts coming from? Where are they going?
Can you stop a thought in the middle?
Can something be found that generates thoughts? Can the source of thoughts be found?
Does the thinker of thoughts appear in direct experience? If so, how exactly?
Do you think thoughts, or do thoughts think you, or do thoughts appear as you?
Is it possible to prevent a thought from appearing?


If you feel that there is a thought, that you believe in...
What is "There is a belief in this thought" in actual experience? Or: How do you know that there is a belief in a thought? What tells you about that?
First there is a mountain,
Then there is no mountain,
Then there is.

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Luisa
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Re: I would request Matthew as guide

Postby Luisa » Wed Aug 09, 2017 9:37 am

Where are thoughts coming from? Where are they going?
I don't know, looking closely I just can not say, suddenly they are there and in the same way they are not anymore.
Can you stop a thought in the middle?
Not intentionally. When I'm conscious that I am thinking the thought stops, but generally an other thought of the type "thinking" pops up. Mmmh how could a thought stop in the middle, is there a middle? :O
Can something be found that generates thoughts? Can the source of thoughts be found?
Lol, this question made me think about an artificial surfing waves pool. I can not find an engine that generates thoughts. And not any other kind of source. Probably the only thing I could say is that there are thoughts because there is life but nothing that generates them.
Does the thinker of thoughts appear in direct experience? If so, how exactly?
When looking, there are only thoughts and if I want to find the thinker this one appears just as another thought, it does not appear directly, awesome!
Do you think thoughts, or do thoughts think you, or do thoughts appear as you?
I can not think thoughts, actually previously I saw that the thinker is just another thought and thoughts can not think, this applies for second question too. I feel more accurate to say that there are thoughts about the idea of me, yes, like there are thoughts about the idea of the taste of a chocolate ice cream.
Is it possible to prevent a thought from appearing?
Wow, many preconceived ideas want to show up to answer this question. Initially it seems that only another thought would prevent a previous one to arise but this is absolutely impossible. No, there is nothing to do to prevent it.
What is "There is a belief in this thought" in actual experience? Or: How do you know that there is a belief in a thought? What tells you about that?
I have the same experience or very similar, about that thought and the thought of the physical existence of this computer when I don't analyze it, for instance. I don't know is just a way of saying. Lol! Nothing tells me, is just another thought! :)

I love this conversation, is the best one I've ever had. Thank you!

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Matthew
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Re: I would request Matthew as guide

Postby Matthew » Wed Aug 09, 2017 12:02 pm

Wonderful!

Can something be found that generates thoughts? Can the source of thoughts be found?
Lol, this question made me think about an artificial surfing waves pool. I can not find an engine that generates thoughts. And not any other kind of source. Probably the only thing I could say is that there are thoughts because there is life but nothing that generates them.
Absolutely!
Sometimes you hear that it is the "mind" which generates thought. But what is "mind" in actual experience? When looking for a "mind", can anything be found other than thoughts ABOUT something labeled "mind"?
And what then is the source of these thoughts that describe a "mind"?
Funny, isn't it!

Can you stop a thought in the middle?
Mmmh how could a thought stop in the middle, is there a middle? :O
Try it! There is no harm in that. Try to stop a thought in the middle and LOOK what then presents itself in actual experience in this very moment!
What is "the middle of a thought" in actual experience?

When I'm conscious that I am thinking the thought stops, but generally an other thought of the type "thinking" pops up
Is there thinking or is there thought?
How do you know about the fact that "you are thinking" when it happens? What tells you about that?


... How do you know that there is a belief in a thought? What tells you about that?
...I don't know is just a way of saying. Lol! Nothing tells me, is just another thought!
The way of expression that "thought tells about something" is absolutely fine for our purpose.
If you say: "Thought tells me, that there is a belief" then this is totally clear.


I also love this conversation :o)
First there is a mountain,
Then there is no mountain,
Then there is.

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Luisa
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Re: I would request Matthew as guide

Postby Luisa » Thu Aug 10, 2017 2:18 pm

What is "the middle of a thought" in actual experience?
When trying to stop a thought in the middle, the middle becomes the end, this is my actual experience of it. Now I'm a little confuse as all this exercise of looking at thoughts are done by someone. When you asked me previously: "How do you know about the fact that "you are thinking" when it happens? What tells you about that?" , I think I know because I still see from a subject perspective, otherwise all the movie would fall apart as it does when the sense of being someone dissolves.
Is there thinking or is there thought?
Yeah, there is thinking, thought is just a label I give to a particular moment of the process of thinking. It feels lighter when seeing so.
How do you know about the fact that "you are thinking" when it happens? What tells you about that?
I don't know how, I just know.
The way of expression that "thought tells about something" is absolutely fine for our purpose.
If you say: "Thought tells me, that there is a belief" then this is totally clear.
I'm aware that you wrote "way of expression" but maybe there is a more accurate way to put it. I feel that if I say "thoughts tell me..." I'm maybe empowering thoughts giving relevance to the content of them when thoughts as I saw when trying to stop them are just labels. I think I am just maintaining the idea of an existing self who has believes, who can be proud and superior or humble and discrete. There is only one thought creating the whole illusion.

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Matthew
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Re: I would request Matthew as guide

Postby Matthew » Thu Aug 10, 2017 8:20 pm

I think I know because I still see from a subject perspective, otherwise all the movie would fall apart as it does when the sense of being someone dissolves.
It is good that you bring this up! Being aware of expecations is very important.
As long as there is a story, the story will be told. There is no way around that.
The thoughts ABOUT a person can not be gotten rid of by way of this inquiry. What can happen is that the
story about Luisa is seen for what it is: Nothing but a story, that doesn't belong to anyone!

So we are not here to get rid of "I-thoughts", to make them stop appearing, but to see them for what they are:
An illusion.
Are you okay with that?

What is the "sense of being someone"? What else could it be apart from thought telling (or giving the sense of): "You are someone"; "I am this, I am that"?
Is it possible to prevent a thought from appearing?
... No, there is nothing to do to prevent it.
How then could the thoughts about a "me" be stopped? (Which means the same as to dissolve the sense of being someone)
Is there anything special about "me-thoughts?"
What exactly is the difference between a thought about "me" and a thought about -let's say- Santa Clause, or marmalade?
If you see a difference, please tell me about it elaborately.


Now I'm a little confuse as all this exercise of looking at thoughts are done by someone.
And the sense of doership will also very likely pop up every now and then during this exploration. The main aspect of our inquiry is the looking. And the fact, if there is someone doing the looking or not will become perfectly clear at some point.

I think I am just maintaining the idea of an existing self who has believes, who can be proud and superior or humble and discrete. There is only one thought creating the whole illusion.
So when you already see it for being just an idea, what 'more' could there be to see?
An idea is a thought and these phenomena by themselves are completely innocent. An idea (thought) cannot do any harm, can cause no trouble or confusion.
So why are we here?

Would you say, that you sometimes still believe this idea to be true?
Is it true?

I'm maybe empowering thoughts giving relevance to the content
What is "empowering a thought"? Is it something else than another thought that says, the "empowered" thought is true?
Does that make it true?
First there is a mountain,
Then there is no mountain,
Then there is.

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Luisa
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Re: I would request Matthew as guide

Postby Luisa » Thu Aug 10, 2017 11:06 pm

Are you okay with that?
Of course!! That's it!! Thank you!! Not getting rid of the I thought, how wonderful!!
Many times I'm able to see Luisa as a character, just as another character of the story, and I'm absolutely fine with that, there is harmony in that seeing.
How then could the thoughts about a "me" be stopped? (Which means the same as to dissolve the sense of being someone)
Absolutely! It makes perfect sense to me. It would be like to suffer total amnesia or something like that.
Is there anything special about "me-thoughts?"
Of course there isn't, thoughts are thoughts, no levels or categories.
What exactly is the difference between a thought about "me" and a thought about -let's say- Santa Clause, or marmalade?
If you see a difference, please tell me about it elaborately.
I could elaborate about this topic extensively, lol, to conclude saying that, of course, there is not difference at all, all three are just thoughts, all three are mere appearances to the mind, only concepts, thoughts.
Would you say, that you sometimes still believe this idea to be true?
Is it true?
How crazy, lol, no I don't believe it at all. I feel that I was grabbing a very thin threat of the robe for not letting go definitely.
What is "empowering a thought"? Is it something else than another thought that says, the "empowered" thought is true?
Does that make it true?
Exactly, re reading my words after your question they appear to me like a musty way of speaking. Of course not!! It doesn't make it true, it does not make any difference.

Wow this is perfectly clear, it seems like if I was expecting for something changing at the self level, even I knew there is not. Actually when I read about people feeling frustrated because they miss a big change, I always thought that they were confused by the spiritual marketing. But this is one step deeper. Thank you <3

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Matthew
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Re: I would request Matthew as guide

Postby Matthew » Fri Aug 11, 2017 5:44 am

Wonderful :-)


I'd like to look at some other aspects, if you also wish to.
Not because we want to feed the idea, that there is something "more" to get, but because the "selfing-process" attaches the "I" to many facets of experience without being noticed.

The body is a good example for that.
Please sit or lay down with eyes closed for about 15 minutes and pay attention only to pure sensations, ignoring thoughts and mental images that come in and label sensations.
Then have a look at the following questions:


Can it be known how tall the body is?

Does the body have a weight or volume?

Does the body have a shape or a form?

Is there a boundary between the body and the clothing?
Is there a boundary between the body and the chair?

Is there an inside or an outside?
If there is an inside - inside of what exactly?
If there is an outside - outside of what exactly?

What does the word/label "body" ACTUALLY refer to?

Is there a meaning to sensation without reliance upon thought?
First there is a mountain,
Then there is no mountain,
Then there is.

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Luisa
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Re: I would request Matthew as guide

Postby Luisa » Fri Aug 11, 2017 10:17 pm

Great!
Can it be known how tall the body is?
Not at all
Does the body have a weight or volume?
I can not know in direct experience
Does the body have a shape or a form?
Again no.
Is there a boundary between the body and the clothing?
No, there isn't. I perceive both at the same level or in the same way so to speak.
Is there a boundary between the body and the chair?
No
Is there an inside or an outside?
No!
If there is an inside - inside of what exactly?
Exactly, I need a reference to say this is the inside or that is the outside. The reference is just a supposition to communicate something.
If there is an outside - outside of what exactly?
Same as before, there is an outside because an inside is assumed.
What does the word/label "body" ACTUALLY refer to?
It may sound funny but...I don't know. This is weird but really I can not see separation anymore.
Is there a meaning to sensation without reliance upon thought?
No, when I let thoughts pass there is only perceiving, a kind of openness. I mean maybe there are sensations yes, but without consequences.
This exercise is great! Thank you!

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Matthew
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Re: I would request Matthew as guide

Postby Matthew » Sat Aug 12, 2017 9:48 am

Here is an even deeper investigation of the body. Please follow each step, don't leave out any. Take your time. Don't move to the next step until the previous one is clearly seen. Repeat the exercise several times.


Stand in front of a bigger mirror.

(1) First, close the eyes and feel the sensations labelled ‘body’.
(2) Then open the eyes and look into the mirror while still paying attention to the sensations.

Is there any connection between the felt sensations and the image in the mirror?
Or just thoughts (and/or mental images) suggest that there is?



(3) While still paying attention to the sensations move one hand and observe the movement from the mirror.
Is there any real connection between the felt sensations (labelled ‘hand’) and image of movement in the mirror?



(4) Now do the same movement with the hand, but this time look at the hand directly, not from the mirror.

Is there any connection between the felt sensations (labelled ‘hand’) and the image ‘of movement’?
Or only thoughts suggest it?



(5) Now, pay attention only to the image in the mirror.

Does the image by itself suggest in any way that is ‘you’ or ‘your body’?
Does the image itself suggest in any way that it is a ‘body’ at all?
Or is there only colour?



(6) Start to walk slowly.

Is there a ‘body walking’, or is there only sensation?
Is there actual experience of ‘walking’ at all?
Or just thoughts about ‘walking’?
Can such a thing as ‘body’ be found or just thoughts about a ‘body’?
Can such a thing as ‘walking’ be found?



(7) Are the sensations localized in space, like ‘going through the room’, or is there only an image that is labelled ‘room’ and appearing sensation without any location?


(8) Do you have a head?
First there is a mountain,
Then there is no mountain,
Then there is.

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Luisa
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Re: I would request Matthew as guide

Postby Luisa » Sun Aug 13, 2017 12:35 am

Hi Matthew, sorry I'm a little bit late responding this message, today I was strangely lazy, sleepy and feeling a kind of heaviness.
Is there any connection between the felt sensations and the image in the mirror?
Or just thoughts (and/or mental images) suggest that there is?
I can not see any connection at all! My image is not different from any other thing that I see!! Is just a habit what makes the connection. It's a great practice! My image appears impersonal without a character.
Is there any real connection between the felt sensations (labelled ‘hand’) and image of movement in the mirror?
Wow, no, there isn't any connection, nevertheless there is a tendency, a kind of pushing to believe that there is. So good!
Is there any connection between the felt sensations (labelled ‘hand’) and the image ‘of movement’?
Or only thoughts suggest it?
I'm not sure if I understand the question properly. I feel the hand with and without having visual contact of it.
Does the image by itself suggest in any way that is ‘you’ or ‘your body’?
Does the image itself suggest in any way that it is a ‘body’ at all?
Or is there only colour?
The image has not a label on it. I'm just so used to think that it is 'my body' or 'me' that those concepts appear automatically when looking at the mirror in normal conditions.
Not at all, the image is just an image. Yes, I could say there are only colors, it's really like a portrait only colors!!
Is there a ‘body walking’, or is there only sensation?
There are only sensations but I think there is a body walking. Not only 'a body' but 'my body' walking. I can see a habit of believing this way.
Is there actual experience of ‘walking’ at all?
Or just thoughts about ‘walking’?
This is very subtle, when I look at the sensations closely moment by moment, there is not actual experience of walking at all. It's only when I look grossly, putting all the sensations together when I conclude that I am walking.
Can such a thing as ‘body’ be found or just thoughts about a ‘body’?
Can such a thing as ‘walking’ be found?
There are only thoughts generated from the sensations, but this thoughts appear so very close to the sensations that there is no space to consider that what I think is not what is actually happening.
Are the sensations localized in space, like ‘going through the room’, or is there only an image that is labelled ‘room’ and appearing sensation without any location?
"Room" is just an image, a concept that we use to communicate. The sensations are not limited by the location, the sensation of going through it is not limited by or exclusive to the room.
Do you have a head?
I love Douglas Harding's experiment, I think is revolutionary. But following the line of this experiment I can say that I have sensations and thoughts associated to those so it appears that I have a head. When I investigate the word head is just a result of many parts, so I can not find anything so called head.

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Matthew
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Re: I would request Matthew as guide

Postby Matthew » Sun Aug 13, 2017 4:31 pm

today I was strangely lazy, sleepy and feeling a kind of heaviness
If it feels like this has something to do with this process, please let me know!
Resistances can come up again and again, which are a signpost to where more looking needs to happen.

I'm not sure if I understand the question properly.
The question was, if it makes a difference for the assumed connection between sensation and sight when either looking at the hand in a mirror or looking directly at the hand.
Does it make a difference?

I feel the hand with and without having visual contact of it.
It is of course useful to refer to a hand as hand in everyday life, haha. But in direct experience, without relying on thought labels..
Is there a hand with or without having visual contact of it?
What exactly is there in actual experience when looking at that what thought describes as a "hand"
(1) with visual contact?
(2) without visual contact?




Next I want us to look at a further aspect.

You already saw Luisa to be just a thought created, always anew projected dream character. What does that mean for decision, control, choice?

Do you make decisions?
Are you in control over anything that happens?
Do you have a choice over what "you do" and what "you think"?

If so, who would be the one making decisions?

Can you observe, where decisions come from?
What is "making a decision" in actual experience?
First there is a mountain,
Then there is no mountain,
Then there is.

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Luisa
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Re: I would request Matthew as guide

Postby Luisa » Sun Aug 13, 2017 11:48 pm

I didn't feel the laziness was related to the process as I didn't feel lazy to replay your message, at all. Today I've been normal again :)
Does it make a difference?
I see. No, when doing the exercise it appears equally disconnected. The fact of looking at my hand is not bringing the thought "is my hand what is moving"
What exactly is there in actual experience when looking at that what thought describes as a "hand"
(1) with visual contact?
(2) without visual contact?
With visual contact is, lets say, less clear but in both cases, in actual experience there are just the sensations. The concepts like mine, hand, my hand come later.
Do you make decisions?
This is a wonderful question. Since my short conversation with JP I see that I don't make any decisions, I just kind of continue the game, sometimes this continue appears like I'm doing something and sometimes appears like I am not doing something, but "I" really do nothing at all.
I have the impression that yesterday I was trying to do things and perhaps that's why I felt that laziness, anyways these things happens sometimes.
Are you in control over anything that happens?
This question is very interesting, if I was in control of anything, I would control so many things. Who or what would decide what am I in control of? Things just happen, life just happens.
Do you have a choice over what "you do" and what "you think"?
I think there are no choices as only one thing can happen at time, to begin with. What I do and what I think is just part of the whole thing, the whole motion.
If so, who would be the one making decisions?
Like shaping my destiny? God, right? ;)
Can you observe, where decisions come from?
Decisions come from the "I" thought.
What is "making a decision" in actual experience?
"Making a decision" is part of the story only. Part of the hallucination of being someone who controls and decides.

Beautiful. Thank you.


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