Why is abiding awakening so elusive?

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runstrails
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Why is abiding awakening so elusive?

Post by runstrails » Thu Aug 26, 2010 12:20 am

There is real clarity sometimes--but that knowing only lasts so long.

It's so clear there is no "i", thoughts are easy to see through (even the velcro ones), bliss is experienced regularly, all the teachings (adya, ET, Jac o'keefe, deMello) all resonate perfectly. BUT none of this lasts very long. With the next email, phonecall, conversation "I " returns and gets sucked right back into duality. A few minutes or hours later there is pure awareness, but again, it does not last.

It's like a merry-go-round! "i"--"pure awareness"---"i"---'pure awareness" and on and on it goes :D

There has been a clear shift, I can never go back to being unconscious. But the awakening is not really abiding. The phenomenal world/conditioning keeps distracting.

Any advice on how to progress? (Yes, I know that 'mind' is asking all this and that what I truly am is always there, but still--- :wink:

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rachMiel
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Re: Why is abiding awakening so elusive?

Post by rachMiel » Thu Aug 26, 2010 12:24 am

I second the question.

Yeah, I know: the five hindrances, habit/conditioning, gravitational pull of the known (unawareness) -- but still ... ;-)

Abiders in presence, can you help us out? :-)
Merrily, merrily, merrily, merrily ...

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Re: Why is abiding awakening so elusive?

Post by Quinn » Thu Aug 26, 2010 1:01 am

Lining up with the same question :)

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Re: Why is abiding awakening so elusive?

Post by gen6 » Thu Aug 26, 2010 7:20 am

runstrails wrote:There is real clarity sometimes--but that knowing only lasts so long.

It's so clear there is no "i", thoughts are easy to see through (even the velcro ones), bliss is experienced regularly, all the teachings (adya, ET, Jac o'keefe, deMello) all resonate perfectly. BUT none of this lasts very long. With the next email, phonecall, conversation "I " returns and gets sucked right back into duality. A few minutes or hours later there is pure awareness, but again, it does not last.

It's like a merry-go-round! "i"--"pure awareness"---"i"---'pure awareness" and on and on it goes :D

There has been a clear shift, I can never go back to being unconscious. But the awakening is not really abiding. The phenomenal world/conditioning keeps distracting.

Any advice on how to progress? (Yes, I know that 'mind' is asking all this and that what I truly am is always there, but still--- :wink:
If you have problems about loading old thought patterns when you do activities that you think call your ,,I,, back, that just needs practice to change the way your brain handles these activities. Everything comes from the same place, how you accept every situation and what your thought schemes are is most important, this is what controls your states. Fortunately enough, everything can go under your conscious control, everything is editable. Do you want to know how to rewire and take advantage of the fact that everything is editable ? That's a different topic.
Last edited by gen6 on Thu Aug 26, 2010 10:22 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Why is abiding awakening so elusive?

Post by tod » Thu Aug 26, 2010 9:48 am

I am working on this too. I am being helped in this by Adya's book "The End of Your World".

My understanding is that I cannot rest in any memory of an awakened state, I have to be it now and now and now.

In the book Adya relates how when someone once asked Nisagadatta Maharaj whether the ego personality ever arose in him and he said "Of Course it does, but I see at once that it is an illusion and discard it."

Hence I need to remain aware moment to moment. I am getting slightly better at this. I understand this can become more or less automatic with practice. I can see that this is of no essential difficulty, but is in the nature of seeing past my fear of really not being anything or anybody and not being hooked by any issues (my issues) in the world. I need to be aware of what thought(s)/issues really drag me back.

I understand that this means that I can merely be (remain undefined) in the world (in time) but not be of it, ie not lost in it, or identified with it, but conscious(ness) in it.

I find that what helps in this is seeing that now is not really in time.

With best wishes,

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Re: Why is abiding awakening so elusive?

Post by great2be » Thu Aug 26, 2010 12:00 pm

tod wrote:My understanding is that I cannot rest in any memory of an awakened state, I have to be it now and now and now.
Absolutely :D
It's the thinking about myself psychologically that actually creates the insecurity and the urge for control.
When there is no thinking about myself, there are no problems to solve!

Thinking about myself psychologically creates psychological time.
When there is no thinking, there is no psychological time.
Nowhere to go and nothing to solve!
An imaginary seeker, seeking an imaginary goal.
Realise the nature of imagination and the fallacious effort ends.

Have you ever seen a dog chasing it's tail?

What happens when the dog runs faster?

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Re: Why is abiding awakening so elusive?

Post by runstrails » Thu Aug 26, 2010 3:42 pm

Thank you, gen6, tod and g2be! Great answers which completely resonate.

In a way, I was sort of getting lazy ---letting some thoughts go by unexamined or not seen through--since (as tod says) sometimes is easier (and more interesting) to be hooked to your story :wink: So vigilance is what is needed, it looks like.
gen6 wrote:
Do you want to know how to rewire and take advantage of the fact that everything is editable ?
Yes, gen6 this is interesting to me. Would you please elaborate. Many thanks!

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Re: Why is abiding awakening so elusive?

Post by rachMiel » Thu Aug 26, 2010 3:49 pm

great2be wrote:Nowhere to go and nothing to solve!
Sounds like my career trajectory ... ;-)
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Re: Why is abiding awakening so elusive?

Post by rachMiel » Thu Aug 26, 2010 5:16 pm

runstrails wrote:So vigilance is what is needed, it looks like.
I think you're right. Krishnamurti spoke about contemporary man needing moment-to-moment vigilance in the world as much as "primitive man" needed it in the jungle.

But maintaining constant vigilance is a drag, isnt it? A bit like a hunted man always looking over his shoulder, always on high alert. Exhausting and joy-depleting! Which is why I was so pleased to hear/read that once the "fire of awareness/vigilance" really catches, it kinda drives itself. Awareness/vigilance is maintained, but with (close to) no effort. I've experienced a bit of this effortless awareness, but not terribly much ... mainly, I think, because my fire hasn't caught fully yet. Stoke that flame! :-)
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Re: Why is abiding awakening so elusive?

Post by runstrails » Thu Aug 26, 2010 5:44 pm

Great Krishnamurthy quote!
But maintaining constant vigilance is a drag, isnt it?
We must be twins, rM---I was thinking the same thing :D

Anyway, on my morning trailrun (which is like a deep meditation for me), I came at two insights which I would like to share:

1) Virtually all the thoughts I have are about myself, even when thinking of other people--its about myself! Putting on my scientist hat, when an effect size is that large it means something--and in this case it means clearly that the ego-system which enabled survival of primitive man has become incredibly dys-functional. Because this ego-system is so dysfunctional its also very hard to manage. Every thought that I saw through, was immediately followed by a related thought which also had to be seen through and on and on it went--frankly no fun.

2) So, I turned on the 'presence' switch and scientifically observed that what happens in 'presence' for me is that there is no thought and everything is in a sort of slow motion. When things are happening in slow motion, attention can be paid to things more completely and it all becomes bright, interesting and blissful. The problem is this lasts only a short time.

SO----let me ask you this: If you had only one hour to live, or one day to live--and you could not really control what happened during that day--how would you live?
I know what I would do--I would live it in slow motion (aka presence!)--so that whatever it was that was happening could be fully experienced.

SO--that seems like an answer to me. Live like its your last day---and live it in slow motion. Its far more interesting that way. Thoughts will come and go, but because its your last day--would you pay much attention to what's supposed to happen tomorrow or what happened yesterday? Just see through the thoughts, but focus on the slow motion happenings.

I'll put this in practice today and report back :D

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Re: Why is abiding awakening so elusive?

Post by Seeker1977 » Thu Aug 26, 2010 5:58 pm

rachMiel wrote:I think you're right. Krishnamurti spoke about contemporary man needing moment-to-moment vigilance in the world as much as "primitive man" needed it in the jungle.
But do we actually need to make efforts to awake, to gain enlightenment? From Eckhart's words I have the feeling that awakening/enlightenment should happen "naturally", without efforts. I may be wrong. What do you think?
“Peace comes from within. Do not seek it without.” -- Buddha

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Re: Why is abiding awakening so elusive?

Post by rachMiel » Thu Aug 26, 2010 6:05 pm

Seeker1977 wrote:
rachMiel wrote:I think you're right. Krishnamurti spoke about contemporary man needing moment-to-moment vigilance in the world as much as "primitive man" needed it in the jungle.
But do we actually need to make efforts to awake, to gain enlightenment? From Eckhart's words I have the feeling that awakening/enlightenment should happen "naturally", without efforts. I may be wrong. What do you think?
What I think (i.e., take this with a hefty grain of salt!) is that effort is needed, in most cases, to get the engine going. Once it's tooling along nicely, it more or less takes care of itself, and one's effort is no longer needed. It's entirely appropriate -- necessary even! -- to put lots of (the right kind of) effort into the process, until the engine "catches."
Merrily, merrily, merrily, merrily ...

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Re: Why is abiding awakening so elusive?

Post by rachMiel » Thu Aug 26, 2010 6:44 pm

runstrails wrote: Great Krishnamurthy quote!
I was paraphrasing. Here's the actual quote:

"As the man in the jungle must keep terribly awake to survive, so the man in the jungle of the world must keep terribly awake to live completely." - Krishnamurti
rachMiel wrote:But maintaining constant vigilance is a drag, isnt it?
runstrails wrote:We must be twins, rM---I was thinking the same thing :D
I definitely feel like we're on similar paths and at similar points in our paths. Sometimes I glance over to my left to see how you're doing ... :-)
runstrails wrote:Anyway, on my morning trailrun (which is like a deep meditation for me), I came at two insights which I would like to share:
Aha! Hence: runstrails. :-) (Is that your Native American name? ;-) )
runstrails wrote:1) Virtually all the thoughts I have are about myself, even when thinking of other people--its about myself!
Yes. I'm coming to the same conclusion about my thoughts ... and my emotions. For example, when I get upset by seeing someone suffering, chances are I'm getting upset about myself, how their suffering impacts me, makes me feel. It's kind of sobering, to realize just how self-centered I am. But I'm not judging it (too much), just watching it.
runstrails wrote:2) So, I turned on the 'presence' switch and scientifically observed that what happens in 'presence' for me is that there is no thought and everything is in a sort of slow motion. When things are happening in slow motion, attention can be paid to things more completely and it all becomes bright, interesting and blissful. The problem is this lasts only a short time.
Yes. I have a similar switch. Depending on my mood, turning it to ON results in my being present anywhere from a second (when I'm really flustered/scatterbrained) to minutes/hours. If it lasts any longer than a couple of minutes, it almost always gets interrupted periodically by (sometimes long-ish) gaps in presence.
runstrails wrote:SO----let me ask you this: If you had only one hour to live, or one day to live--and you could not really control what happened during that day--how would you live?
I know what I would do--I would live it in slow motion (aka presence!)--so that whatever it was that was happening could be fully experienced.
Alas I'd probably spend most of the hour/day in a despair-dripping panic/abyss. How would I LIKE to spend it? As pure awareness, pure being.
runstrails wrote:SO--that seems like an answer to me. Live like its your last day---and live it in slow motion. Its far more interesting that way. Thoughts will come and go, but because its your last day--would you pay much attention to what's supposed to happen tomorrow or what happened yesterday? Just see through the thoughts, but focus on the slow motion happenings.

I'll put this in practice today and report back :D
I expect a detailed précis by 11 pm EST tonight. ;-)
Merrily, merrily, merrily, merrily ...

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Re: Why is abiding awakening so elusive?

Post by ZenCowgirl » Thu Aug 26, 2010 7:46 pm

But do we actually need to make efforts to awake, to gain enlightenment? From Eckhart's words I have the feeling that awakening/enlightenment should happen "naturally", without efforts. I may be wrong. What do you think?
~ Seeker 1977 wrote.

Let's remember, we have it all backwards. There can be no effort to be what you already are. But there can be effort to stop the thinking that you are what you are not.

In the summer when you are outside and mosquitoes might come and, yet, there are no mosquitoes, you do not sit there and say, "Oh, I am really doing well with the no-mosquito condition." When mosquito (thought) lands on you, however, you can swat it. You can even put on bug juice (practices) so that mosquitos might not land.

But you already are who you are - you cannot try to be that. To remember this ... is.

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Re: Why is abiding awakening so elusive?

Post by Seeker1977 » Thu Aug 26, 2010 8:12 pm

ZenCowgirl wrote:Let's remember, we have it all backwards. There can be no effort to be what you already are. But there can be effort to stop the thinking that you are what you are not.

In the summer when you are outside and mosquitoes might come and, yet, there are no mosquitoes, you do not sit there and say, "Oh, I am really doing well with the no-mosquito condition." When mosquito (thought) lands on you, however, you can swat it. You can even put on bug juice (practices) so that mosquitos might not land.

But you already are who you are - you cannot try to be that. To remember this ... is.
Oh, I see. Thank you, it is an excellent simile.

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