1. Unfortunately The Project Meditation Community Forum is no longer active. Although registration and the creation of new posts not possible, you can still read and search the forum...

    If you are unable to find what you are looking for within the Project Meditation Community please check out our new Blog and/or our Facebook page.

Meditating on the Self

Discussion in 'Meditation Chatter Box' started by GilesC, May 31, 2011.

  1. Midnight

    Midnight Member

    Joined:
    Feb 1, 2010
    Messages:
    265
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    16
    I feel like this video is relevant:

    YouTube - ‪Jeff Foster - how would you know if you are enlightened?‬‏

    Mainly the part where he speaks of knowing "what sees this".

    The way I interpreted it, I saw it as you cannot logically put into words what sees life, what life is, what is living (which are all basically the same ways of saying the same things and pointing the same thing :D)

    To put something like this into thought is limiting because a concept always points to a certain image of the reality of whatever the thought it about. Sort of like how the definition of "apple" is not what an actual apple is. That sort of has the implication that whatever you are thinking about is "THIS and NOT THAT" which is inherently dualistic. What you are, and what life is is beyond dualism. The thought about whatever the thing is is not actually the thing.

    So to put it into words, you can turn this connectedness...self...oneness into a concept, but the concept is not the thing. It can definitely help lead us to the reality of it, but the idea itself isn't it.

    So we are always what we are, our identities are never lost, so we go searching until we reach what we think it is. But what we think it is can't really be it, because the thought isn't the thing.

    Though it is also important to note that logic is not the only facet or function of the mind. The mind can also perceive things it does not know how to put into words. So in a way, awareness (as you) is aware of itself through the fact that it is living. It can't really SEE awareness, because the seeing is it.

    Really I can type up nonsensical paragraphs all day, but I find the most helpful pointer to be "Don't worry about it." The awareness, connectedness, self, or lack of it are all as they should be at all times. No experience is incomplete and the experience of incompleteness is a complete experience in itself. You are always you, the universe, acting as a person, totally immersed and connected with everything.

    In my experience, not turning awareness into a concept (which happens when you try to see the awareness, and create layers to get behind and so forth) is the best way to go about this.

    :p

    This is a great point. When I got into spirituality, I came across this idea of the observer that just sits there and watches to be very devoid of life, and like you said "boring".

    But again, this is a mental projection of what it is! The thought isn't the thing as I said before. The observer is not separated from what is observed. It just isn't. That's oneness at the core. Exclusively trying to dwell in only what is absolute is only the opposite extreme of trying to find "happiness" in a world exclusively of form.

    The reason I say this is because I find there tends to be a subtle rejection of form, and impermanence, and the world after being into spirituality for a while. When in fact, that is not the case. The world of form happens within the formless. The feelings of lightness and joy that arise out this seeming connectedness are perfect, no matter how impermanent they might be. Sure, I guess you could talk about how "they aren't you" and this teaching is fine in the beginning.

    But lots of people, including myself at one point, use this to create a separation between "you" and the "world" which is nothing but another extreme.

    I guess what I'm trying to say is that this feeling of connectedness, this subtle okayness, that is a result of just being and seeing is alright too. It is all part of life, it is all part of the limitlessness that we are. There is a see-er at the base of every experience, I guess you could say.

    Also, not lecturing or trying to teach you, uplift, just adding to what you said :)
     
    Last edited: Jun 1, 2011
  2. Panthau

    Panthau Member

    Joined:
    Jan 22, 2009
    Messages:
    1,239
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    36
    Giles its something to perceive everything-that-is constantly as one, or to know it is one and perceive duality. I know that everything is ONE, but the momentarily perception is not. So im praying to this higher source, which has the understanding about how to change my perspective to the better.
     
  3. Edwin

    Edwin Member

    Joined:
    Dec 15, 2007
    Messages:
    1,858
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    36
    True, I admit that was a mean thing to do. I am sorry for that.

    If we are completely honest to each other, you assumed that "so many of us jump to the quick conclusion that "the self can't see its Self"."
    That assumption triggered a reaction in me to lash out at you by twisting your words.
    Again, I am sorry for that. In all fairness, I wrote it during work, when the adrenaline level was somewhat higher in my body. Reading back what I said, even I don't like me. I just should not have reacted to you like that.

    Like I said in my previous post:
    "I respect your opinion, and I don't feel the need to change it. However your reaction invites me into a response as well, and I will, but please don't take it as me trying to convince you into something."

    When I respect your opinion, and you respect mine, we can share our views with each other, but the discussion ends right there.
    When we continue the discussion from there, it has to be either to convince or be convinced.
    I don't feel the need to discuss something that is clear to me. I am neither waiting to be convinced, nor trying to convince someone ( against their own will ). However when someone asks something, like Giles did, I will answer with my view on the matter.
    You ( and to some extent, so did Uplift ) questioned my view. And that is fine, as long as you don't try to convince me otherwise.

    I hope this clears some of the tension between us.
     
  4. GilesC

    GilesC Member

    Joined:
    Jan 4, 2009
    Messages:
    1,856
    Likes Received:
    1
    Trophy Points:
    36
    Because, like yourself Edwin, I know the Self from experience. As you say, this isn't just a reasoning of some concept of what the Self is, but knowledge from actual experience. So, when others say that the Self can observe itself, or that I should try meditating On the Self, my curiosity was really as to whether I was missing something somewhere, though from my own knowledge of the Self, I just couldn't (and still can't) see it.

    :D
     
  5. GilesC

    GilesC Member

    Joined:
    Jan 4, 2009
    Messages:
    1,856
    Likes Received:
    1
    Trophy Points:
    36
    I know Edwin has apologised for the way he said it, but he was also speaking from the truth of knowledge and experience.

    Logic, of course, isn't banned from the discussion, but when knowledge is found through actual experience, then there is not need for logic or reasoning. A mathematician will use logic to reach a proof, but when the proof is experienced and known about, there is no longer a need for logic to be used... it is simply then knowledge. That is the point Edwin was making.

    In truth we all have this knowledge; we all know the Self; and we all have experiences of the Self, though sometimes these are momentary and often overlooked, sometimes simply because we don't have words, terminology or a model to explain them... we probably just call it "a nice moment" or some such thing.

    It's discussions such as these that will aid us in finding a terminology or way of describing what we experience and having those "aha! so that's what that is" moments. ;)

    Hugs

    Giles
     
  6. GilesC

    GilesC Member

    Joined:
    Jan 4, 2009
    Messages:
    1,856
    Likes Received:
    1
    Trophy Points:
    36
    Yes, you can't recognise Awareness, but you can recognise when you are not BEing all awareness. A bit like recognising the hole in a doughnut, you can't see the hole by itself, but by seeing the doughnut, the hole is known about.

    ;)

    Hugs

    Giles
     
  7. GilesC

    GilesC Member

    Joined:
    Jan 4, 2009
    Messages:
    1,856
    Likes Received:
    1
    Trophy Points:
    36
    Aha! I think I get what you mean. When you refer to focus, if I read that as "in the present moment" then I would agree with what you say. When Buddha achieved his goal, he continued being in the present moment, that is to say, he was completely aware. If that's the case then we do indeed agree. :rolleyes:

    Oh yeah, I know that. None of it matters. But the fun (for my mind anyway) is in discussing it. Otherwise, why would we bother... after all it's just boring at the end of the day. ;)

    I think I'm getting a flavour of how you discuss things now. It's starting to piece together. :eek:

    Doesn't that make God something "other" from myself? Isn't that the religious view of God as a "being" in His own right, to be revered and feared, who created the universe because there was nothing before Him, and then he chose to create mankind, but we are not him and are subservient to him? Not for me. I have experienced BEing the Self, I have knowledge of BEing the universe/One/Complete Awareness and being with everything... no anger, no hate, no "this and that", no love or any other emotion, no "thing" (nothing).... everything and nothing at the same time (though there is no time). (gawd, some people would listen to me and lock me up in the loony bin hehe!)

    :) What more is there? I don't have a "need" to see my Self, as BEing completely aware has no "needs".

    Exactly. :rolleyes:

    Hugs

    Giles
     
  8. GilesC

    GilesC Member

    Joined:
    Jan 4, 2009
    Messages:
    1,856
    Likes Received:
    1
    Trophy Points:
    36
    Midnight,

    I won't quote your whole post because I feel there's no need to comment on any one bit of it. You put into words the whole concept of Self in a different way to I've read it before, but in a way that resonates with what I know it to be.

    Wonderful! :)

    Hugs

    Giles
     
  9. GilesC

    GilesC Member

    Joined:
    Jan 4, 2009
    Messages:
    1,856
    Likes Received:
    1
    Trophy Points:
    36
    Hiya Pan,

    Yes, intellectualising about the Self (Oneness or whatever you want to call it) is one thing, experiencing it is another. The first we believe is easy (ish) to do and we believe the latter is hard. However, as I've mentioned (and others too) before, being at One with everything is something we all do experience from time to time, and moreso when we meditate, but often we don't recognise it for what it is, or have words to describe it, or to connect that experience with existing knowledge or principles of non-duality.

    You are praying to your Self to be able to try and recognise it, but does that mean you are looking to see it? That would be something you'd never achieve. You can only Be it, and you do that by letting go of the things that are preventing you from just BEing. That is why meditation helps us so much.

    :)

    Hugs

    Giles
     
  10. Karmoh

    Karmoh Member

    Joined:
    Mar 9, 2010
    Messages:
    349
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    16
    Earlier I posted about liberation of not knowing as “no self”

    Adyashanti mentions this.

    You can’t follow a spiritual path like a lemming to enlightenment. It simply doesn’t work that way. An unwillingness to question every step of the way will stop you dead in your tracks. The path to enlightenment is strewn with those who have chosen to take a position or an identity along the way. And the closer you get to enlightenment the more dead bodies you will be stepping over until finally you step right out of yourself and arrive at the goal, exactly where you have always been. Except now there is no one standing there!
    – Adyashanti

    __

    And following on with Midnights link to Jeff Foster, Jeff in many of his talks mentions THIS

    Personally after seeing things in a different light or glimpsing THIS, there is only one truth and the Belief or thought, it’s all One, or there is no self, will not lead to anywhere. They are merely forms arising in THIS. This belief can actually keep thought locked into the dream of self. Belief cannot see THIS, because belief is identification with thought, which is self. Belief is too busy maintaining an identity to see the truth beyond all identities. THIS just is. It is free, loving, and open. It has no preference for the labels or images we place on it, the stance we take on it, or the personalities we make out of it. Thought is temporary, self-involved, and largely involuntary. To believe that thought can truly tell you who you are or what THIS or God is, is the dream.


    What Is THIS?

    It is not the word, This, One, Enlightenment or God. THIS is realized through seeing what it is not. This is beyond belief and thought, and yet it includes it. In other words, it plays with preferences and concepts, but it is not attached to them. It is not seeking a sense of self from them.

    No wonder so many before us try and express THIS through metaphors and parables. The ultimate truth cannot be expressed. Every word and concept is a parable, no matter how precisely it is pointing to the truth.

    ___

    To say that the spirit should be expressed a certain way, or is a certain thing, comes from a point of reference, which is identification with thought. It is self. If I use the word “God” or “Allah” here and you are a Christian or a Muslim, something in your brain will register that word as being the truth. On the other hand, if you read a lot of non-duality books, the word “One” or “presence” may trigger a familiar mental response.
    The brain is simply stuck in words and beliefs. It is chasing after its own ideas.
    -Kiloby


    Peace :)
     
    Last edited: Jun 1, 2011
  11. olmate

    olmate Member

    Joined:
    Jan 13, 2010
    Messages:
    404
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    16
    Perhaps an additional context to consider ... following on from Karmoh is that the vista we see pretty much depends on where we are standing.

    And as we walk our respective paths we get to certain points and realize that we might have to (seemingly) turn back and take an alternative path.

    All the time the vista changes.

    Just a (dare I say it) a thought...

    Olmate
     
  12. Michael David

    Michael David Member

    Joined:
    Apr 17, 2011
    Messages:
    140
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    16
    Giles your comment on my post was right on.

    @Michael: Yes, meditating on the "What" or "Where" am I? would also do it I think. As you say, we have walls that are created by the mind and by simply observing those and accepting them, they will dissolve and that is when we can become the One awareness of the Self.

    I have just read through the entire thread and I was already tired before I even started to catch up. I have been hungry since Giles wrote about donuts and the holes within them.

    Now I am thinking of peanut butter and jelly and how differernt they are in combination as opposed to being separate. Like a geometric progression.

    Take the hole of the donut. It has a sense of being there but is really only defined by the lack of donut in that "space." As the donut surrounds the hole imagine the self to be the donut. Then consider what is the Hole, the lack of self, that the self surrounds?

    Is that the Self? Is that Hole the same as "walls that are created by the mind and by simply observing those and accepting them, they will dissolve and that is when we can become the One awareness of the Self." noted above?

    Michael:)
     
  13. Karmoh

    Karmoh Member

    Joined:
    Mar 9, 2010
    Messages:
    349
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    16
    The hole is perfect...
    ...For diets, no calories in holes :D

    PS, Hey Uplift that would really rile you as a marketing scam the donut with the less fattening hole :D;)
     
    Last edited: Jun 1, 2011
  14. GilesC

    GilesC Member

    Joined:
    Jan 4, 2009
    Messages:
    1,856
    Likes Received:
    1
    Trophy Points:
    36
    Morning all! Another day for fervent discussion...

    But are the peanut butter and jelly in combination different from the peanut butter and jelly when seperate? In reality they are not, but your mind (through your taste buds) tell you differently.

    You say donut, I say doughnut, let's call the hole thing off ( :D scuse the pun).
    How about that the hole and the surrounding cooked batter is all the donut. Without the hole it's not a donut (yes I know some places make donuts without holes, but this is for demonstrative purposes :cool:). A hole by itself would be a hole. The batter without the hole is just batter. As One, the hole and batter make the donut, neither being seperate from the other.

    No, the walls are the creation of the mind that tells you that it's a donut without recognising that the hole is an integral part of that, or that the hole is just a hole regardless of whether the dough is around it or not.

    :)

    Hugs

    Giles
     
  15. Uplift

    Uplift Guest

    Gidday Giles. You state often that you have knowledge of complete awareness, yet simultaneously, habitually, continually believe that you don’t. Complete awareness encompasses all awareness, including being able to be aware of yourself from every infinite, unlimited possibility. That means seeing, meditating on, or whatever, your Self.
    If you now feel,‘no’ habitually rising up, wonder and question why that has become your focus, to be supported, strengthened and defended, instead of complete awareness, your Self. It’s like a beautiful model with an eating disorder. They are already beautiful, but it does them no good, and they don’t truly experience their beauty inwardly at all, despite outward claims, as long as they focus on the belief that they aren’t. Yet, they are truly beautiful.
    The Jesus’s and Buddha’s and so on have no doubt about their Truth and capacity, no contradictory belief. They have a One pointed focus, that anything is possible. If, ‘no’ is rising up again, ask yourself why again, and again shift your focus. Or, similar to the model, read and talk about being completely aware without actually being aware of it. Does that make the model something separate, ugly or something other than beautiful, ala the religious dogma that you comment about. No, but deep down they believe it, and are blinded by that belief, so for all intentional purposes they might as well be the ugliest thing that ever existed, despite being amasingly beautiful.
     
  16. Edwin

    Edwin Member

    Joined:
    Dec 15, 2007
    Messages:
    1,858
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    36
    I might be getting more used to the way you post, but for some reason I understand your point Uplift, even if I don't understand some of your examples/pointers. Does that even make sense ?
    I am convinced that you will have to agree that we can only talk from truth of our own experience, not book-wisdom. That is pretending to be something we are not, and Uplift, you especially honor dead-honest truth.

    Dropping a belief, in my opinion, is not an act of will, but an act of grace. One can try to convince himself that he dropped a belief, but until that actually happens, he is actually deluding himself in the same way as when he is still hanging on to that belief.
    I do see now what you are pointing at, and I have to agree with you.
    Once the system of finding the Self has paid off, it is time to drop the system, and just be, without any belief. Your point led to an insight of some sort with me.

    Giles, in terms of Advaita, I can only translate what Uplift is saying by saying that once the jnana path has ended, the bhakti path has to be acknowledged as well. The system has served it's purpose, and now it's time to just Be, by unlearning the system itself. Just allowing the love and Beingness to engulf your all-time experience. Dropping any belief-system, and Being the sheer existence without boundries of any kind, even those that helped you get where you are now like the system of Advaita. Everything exists within You, external world is an illusion, mind too, everything that appears is, unconditionally.
    Or else, the world might become somewhat boring right Uplift ? :p
     
  17. Karmoh

    Karmoh Member

    Joined:
    Mar 9, 2010
    Messages:
    349
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    16
    Hi Edwin,

    I sort of understand this statement but it also confuses too. In my search, I have come across religions, philosophies or spiritual teachings that contained really beautiful words that swept me up, promising that somewhere down the road, after many years of work, I might discover the contentment we are seeking. I may have involved myself diligently and earnestly in these programs because of the claims and promises of manifesting fabulous worldly material goods or other-worldly spiritual dimensions.

    But when the realization dawned that I have just been overlooking it. The treasure of my freedom, love, peace and wisdom lies deep within the experience I’m already having. But, if put in to the written words it is only an written expression of what I have already experienced, but the words come through books.

    I have glimpsed this true self, no self or whatever but the words I use to post, is in truth are from the memory of books. There is no teacher in my life, only books, although they are gradually taking a back seat, after reading the above statement there appears now to be a fraudulent edge to this Karmoh persona.

    Hope that makes sense. :eek:

    peace :)
     
    Last edited: Jun 2, 2011
  18. Edwin

    Edwin Member

    Joined:
    Dec 15, 2007
    Messages:
    1,858
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    36
    Yes, I see what you mean, but what I meant with my statement was that it actually is easy to copy teachings from books, even when you don't understand them. However, if you read the book, investigate the words of the book to find out if it is truth, and when you see the truth behind the words, start teaching from your personal experience....

    Get my drift ?
     
  19. Karmoh

    Karmoh Member

    Joined:
    Mar 9, 2010
    Messages:
    349
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    16
    Ahh! I see the point, I was taking it from the false preacher perspective. Shouting Rhetoric from the pulpit, then spending his nights in Amsterdam...if you get my drift:D;)

    <----- I have been knocking around for awhile so, I thought I'd show my true self ;)
     
    Last edited: Jun 2, 2011
  20. Uplift

    Uplift Guest

    Gidday Edwin, I hear what you are saying, about deluding our Self, and about Grace.

    By Grace, we have an absolutely, unbelievable tool at our disposal. Our mind(s).

    Say I am depressed, broke, no job, unfit, maybe the pre success Tony Robinson. LOA styles of thinking teach us how to use the mind correctly. So we decide, we contemplate on and meditate on, we wholeheartedly choose, we develop a laser like focus on, ‘I have an amasing job, I am a happy positive, passionate person’…and so on and so on. Over and over, wholeheartedly focused. Others, who don’t really understand how the mind is designed to work, and that we are the creator of our circumstance, through thought, may point out that we should stop deluding ourselves, and face reality etc, etc, etc, etc, etc. We know we are not deluding our Self, we are taking control, and making a clear, focused, new choice. That’s all we need to do, and through a new focused direction given to the subconscious and Self, and through our Oneness, and Self, momentum swings. Grace appears. I tried to make the point to Giles that even though we can’t see, or understand how it, Grace, ever could, or will appear, is totally irrelevant, in both a positive sense, and a negative sense. ‘OMG, how can this be happening to me’! Examine your thoughts. The thinking can change in an instant. As kids, we’ve always loved surprises, its our nature!

    If the choice is, I want to realise my Self, wholeheartedly choose it, and use, don’t despise your mind, whatever technique you adopt, it’s a gift beyond any worldly gift, it’s Grace. Keep the direction clear and intensely focused, momentum shifts, Grace comes, bingo, belief changes. Ask, and you will receive. It’s not deluding, it’s choosing. The delusion is thinking you have no choice, and underestimating, limiting the power of Self, of Grace. The mistake is worrying about how it could happen, (God is great, but not that great! ) which then contradicts the choice, creating a new opposite focus, perhaps an even more powerful, emotionally driven one, a catch twenty two stalemate.
    So, the Wright brothers, flapping and stumbling down hills, bits of splintered wood and paper and pedals and flotsam crumpled all around, people laughing, mocking, ‘deluded fools trying the impossible’… and now look, Richard Branson is selling tickets on his whatever you call it Space Jet, and God knows what’s next. The laser like dream of the Wright brothers, and Grace in full glory. Determination.

    It gets even easier if we want. If we aren’t sure of the best choice for us, we can choose in the umbrella of Oneness, surrender our choice to Oneness, and really let the wisdom of God, Self, Oneness, Grace do its thing. But we will always be allowed to choose. Grace is so Loving, so forgiving.

    So I just ask, I really am interested, why the need to deceive when selling and marketing, even Spiritual products. Where’s the faith, the love? Hence the statement, ‘Ye of little faith’. There are infinitely more successful, wise choices, which are truly aligned with God, Oneness, good for all. Maybe that also is too hard for God? Cosmos’s, universes, galaxies, atoms, black holes, suns, babies, life, sure, but honest, truly beneficial sales techniques and products that really set an example for our children, our Grace… nup, too hard! But pppsssttt, buy this product, you only have until midnight, (you know the ludicrous story), and anything is possible, even enlightenment! Can you imagine, ‘Hey, pppssstt, there’s this sermon by this Jesus guy with free loaves and fishes for only 97 bucks, but you better… or, ‘Hey, pppsssttt, this Buddha guy is going to show you how to be free, but he reckons his mate will really free you for only 97 bucks, but quick , you’d better’…

    And what will enlightenment really be like? Don’t worry about it, but stay focused on it, use your gift of choice. God, Oneness, Grace knows beyond doubt.
     

Share This Page