Realising your true self

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Midnight
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Realising your true self

Post by Midnight » Tue Aug 17, 2010 11:25 pm

Hey everyone.

Is it enough to just 'think' to yourself that your not who you thought you were all these years?

Basically, I love listening to Eckhart Tolle and Adyashanti, I can easily listen to what their saying and feel more relaxed, its almost as if I can SEE actively what their trying to say but have a hard time MYSELF achieving it.

I hear them say that the egoic mind is an illusion etc, I understand this and see it in myself, but nothing happens when I do this... I am consciously aware of when the ego is trying to take me over.

Sometimes... just sometimes.. I feel that profound moment, as soon as my mind REALISES I have found it, it drifts from me so fast it might as well have not happened.

I know that it's impossible to GRASP these concepts with the mind but I don't want to find myself returning to the teachings to get advice over and over again, its very frustrating to feel such a brilliant state and then to have it disappear even though it could change my life totally.

Anyway, to give those reading a quick run down of how I'm practising what I've been told in real life. Here goes.

1) I watch my thoughts - however this usually gives way to more thoughts.
2) I try to make my mind realise that my thoughts aren't real - SOMETIMES makes me begin to feel conscious but again dissipates after a while.
3) I try to accept everything as it is - would it work if I accepted that I'm not conscious?
4) I force my attention into the present moment - nothing happens!

Guys - this whole thing is such a mind fuck (sorry to be foul or whatever).

The funny thing is - the above points, 1,2,3,4 etc - their egoic - I've just realised this - me saying I TRY to do all that is wrong because the ego wants to try to get control.

Anyhow overall I just want someone to help me out, explain how I can have stillness consistently if you can, or just try if you cant.

Thank you.

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Re: Realising your true self

Post by Ralph » Tue Aug 17, 2010 11:57 pm

Midnight wrote:
Anyhow overall I just want someone to help me out, explain how I can have stillness consistently if you can, or just try if you cant.
Stillness is always present. Just keep catching yourself when you are pulled into your thoughts, just like when you noticed (realized) that the above points, 1,2,3,4 etc - were egoic.
There is a phrase from greatfreedom.org that says "Short moments of awareness, repeated many times become automatic" .

Keep doing this exercise .... you are on the right track.

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Re: Realising your true self

Post by Midnight » Wed Aug 18, 2010 12:20 am

Ralph wrote:
Midnight wrote:
Anyhow overall I just want someone to help me out, explain how I can have stillness consistently if you can, or just try if you cant.
Stillness is always present. Just keep catching yourself when you are pulled into your thoughts, just like when you noticed (realized) that the above points, 1,2,3,4 etc - were egoic.
There is a phrase from greatfreedom.org that says "Short moments of awareness, repeated many times become automatic" .

Keep doing this exercise .... you are on the right track.
Thanks Ralph. I realise that I can catch myself, however I figured that once I did this just a few times I would awaken, however this did not take place.. I thought I had it, but there was still negativity within me - Tolle says that if you were truly in the moment all negativity would dissolve straight away. When I put all my attention into the present, fuck all happens and this angers me because everything Eckhart says seems to have no place actively within reality, only seems true while your reading it or watching his videos.

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Re: Realising your true self

Post by Ralph » Wed Aug 18, 2010 12:35 am

Who you truly are is already awake. Can you see that the one who wants to awaken is exactly the one who is blocking the way. In a way, you need to get out of the way for true seeing to shine through.
I realise that I can catch myself, however I figured that once I did this just a few times I would awaken, however this did not take place..
Who you think you are will never awaken. Have patience, it will come.

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Re: Realising your true self

Post by kiki » Wed Aug 18, 2010 12:52 am

Is it enough to just 'think' to yourself that your not who you thought you were all these years?
Doing that only turns it into another belief, and no matter what the belief is you can become entangled within it. The point is not to substitute one belief for another, but to see what all beliefs/thoughts/ideas arise in - consciousness/awareness. Nothing you can do will manufacture consciousness - that's the bad news. The good news is that consciousness is already fully present right now. It's just a matter of noticing that it's present.

This is where self-enquiry is useful - ask yourself "Who/what am I really?" Now, the point of this question is not to arrive at any answer from the mind (because no answer based on mental activity is "it"), but to see what exists prior to, during, and after mind activity. It's OK to exhaust yourself in coming up with mental answers, but with each of those answers you know that you have yet to dis-cover the true answer. When all that is not you is discarded, what is left? What is the nature of that?

So the challenge is to notice the "footprints" of what you really are - consciousness/awareness. Even though consciousness is formless (because it isn't a kind of "thing") and it doesn't really leave "footprints", how is it known to be present?

Let me give an example from my own life. I spent 27 years practicing a meditation technique in order to become "enlightened", and after all that time I felt I hadn't gotten anywhere and was about to quit the whole business of finding enlightenment. It was at this time I came across Tolle and his teaching of what enlightenment actually was (I had some very pie-in-the-sky ideas about it prior to Tolle, largely due to the meditation teacher I was following ). Tolle's teaching enabled me to see where my "problem" was all those years. His ideas about what "ego" was enabled me to witness the creation of ego in my own mind. How? A large part of my identity was in being a "meditator", and as soon as I sat to meditate the ego would show up with its meditation technique and the goal of that technique dangling before me. I would start the technique by introducing the mantra that I had been using and followed my usual routine.

Then an interesting thing happened - I suddenly "saw" how kiki the meditator kept himself going --> by meditating! Without the technique to practice (and therefore, without kiki) I "saw" how something was watching it all happen. That something was simply alert and attentive, aware of the comings and goings of events in the physical body, the mind, and in the surrounding environment. I asked myself, "How did I know that anything was here? Of course, because consciousness/awareness is here!"

That something, consciousness/awareness, was "still" and "silent", yet obviously present because I was aware that I was present, that I was "here". What was present wasn't the "I" that made up kiki, but was presence itself; it was the eternal "I", the Self. And here came the real shocker - I could suddenly see/realize that that awareness/Self was here all along, but it was being overlooked in favor of something else.

The something else that awareness was aware of all of my life was all of that mind activity, including that meditation technique I so diligently practiced, the thoughts about "my" past, the thoughts about "my" future. And I also found that when I simply accepted everything just as it is right now, with no concern about anything else, no kiki could be found. Without thoughts of past or thoughts of future there was just "this" that appeared. Kiki only showed up when thoughts of the past or future were indulged in. Without resorting to memories of accumulated knowledge stored in the mind everything I looked at, touched, tasted, felt, and heard was simply present. It was only when thoughts entered into it would those things become something else in my mind. You see, all of those things were simply registering upon consciousness/awareness, effortlessly. Nothing had to be done for that to happen, no effort expended for consciousness to show up because I could now realize it was already here in its fullness.

Explore for yourself how you "know" anything. What is the nature of that which knows? Are "You" separate from that? Even when there is frustration about all of this how do you know that the frustration is there? Isn't it consciousness that lets you realize you are frustrated?

So it's a kind of "stepping back" from everything, a shift away from focusing entirely on the content of the mind and into a conscious awareness of that which is aware - the Self, the real You; the silent still presence that is fully here right now. That's the "power of now".
"Miss Kelly, perhaps you'd like this flower. I seem to have misplaced my buttonhole ... Miss Kelly, you know, when you wear my flower you make it look beautiful." Elwood P. Dowd
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Re: Realising your true self

Post by Sighclone » Wed Aug 18, 2010 7:14 am

Thank you, kiki........... :)

Andy
A person is not a thing or a process, but an opening through which the universe manifests. - Martin Heidegger
There is not past, no future; everything flows in an eternal present. - James Joyce

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Re: Realising your true self

Post by 18andlife » Wed Aug 18, 2010 7:31 am

That's a freakin awesome post kiki.

This knowing that you speak of. You mentioned it to me in a PM a long time ago. I have often kept it in mind. Actually the other day I was wondering about it and wanted to ask. This knowing, is it arisen or not arisen?

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Re: Realising your true self

Post by Seeker1977 » Mon Aug 23, 2010 11:10 am

Midnight wrote:Sometimes... just sometimes.. I feel that profound moment, as soon as my mind REALISES I have found it, it drifts from me so fast it might as well have not happened.
...
1) I watch my thoughts - however this usually gives way to more thoughts.
2) I try to make my mind realise that my thoughts aren't real - SOMETIMES makes me begin to feel conscious but again dissipates after a while.
3) I try to accept everything as it is - would it work if I accepted that I'm not conscious?
4) I force my attention into the present moment - nothing happens!
That is my problem as well. Sometimes I (almost) there for a fraction of a moment and then it all slips away...
And yes, I do those four mentioned practices as well.
I guess we have to be patient. Eckhart says you cannot really "do" anything to obtain enlinghtenment. But you can prepare yourself to be more ready for it IF it happens...
“Peace comes from within. Do not seek it without.” -- Buddha

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Re: Realising your true self

Post by Seeker1977 » Mon Aug 23, 2010 11:14 am

[quote="Ralph"]1,2,3,4 etc - were egoic.[quote]

Yes, now I think so. It is so hard to realise and accept that you do not have to do anything but watch and notice your toughts, feelings, reactions etc. Time after time I still keep finding myself doing one or more of these four things...
“Peace comes from within. Do not seek it without.” -- Buddha

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Re: Realising your true self

Post by Seeker1977 » Mon Aug 23, 2010 12:07 pm

Kiki - Excellent post, thank you for it. Would you help me with a few things? Please see below:
kiki wrote:Now, the point of this question is not to arrive at any answer from the mind, but to see what exists prior to, during, and after mind activity.
"to see what exists prior to, during, and after mind activity" Would you explain this a bit further? How do you do this?
kiki wrote:I spent 27 years practicing a meditation technique in order to become "enlightened", and after all that time I felt I hadn't gotten anywhere and was about to quit the whole business of finding enlightenment.
I understand meditation will not lead to enlightenment but it is still okay to be used for other purposes, isn't it? I myself often meditate but not for become enlightened but simply because it feels good, relaxing and refreshing. I guess that is okay?
kiki wrote:Then an interesting thing happened - I suddenly "saw" how kiki the meditator kept himself going --> by meditating!
How did this happen? For example did you read Tolle's book and suddenly you just "saw" it?
kiki wrote:I could suddenly see/realize that that awareness/Self was here all along, but it was being overlooked in favor of something else.
Yes, I think this is my problem too. Awareness/self is/should be right here in me, but I do not notice it as I am probably stuck in my "seeking for awareneess/self"-mode. I just don't know how to release it, how to let this "seeking mode" go. If I do not seek it then I feel I do nothing for enlightenment and I will never receive its gift. But if I do seek then it seem that I do the wrong thing for enlightenment and I will never receive it either... Huh... What to do (or not to do) then? I do not really know...
kiki wrote:Nothing had to be done for that to happen, no effort expended for consciousness to show up because I could now realize it was already here in its fullness.
Lucky you! But, I guess, without your 27 years of meditation you probably would have not realised this? The lots of mediatation in vain did it "realisable", so after all it was not all in vain?
kiki wrote:So it's a kind of "stepping back" from everything
Yes, it seems more and more to me that engligtenment, awareness and wisdom is not something we learn or get to know but something that is the result of shedding things along our way.
“Peace comes from within. Do not seek it without.” -- Buddha

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Re: Realising your true self

Post by matt74ike » Mon Aug 23, 2010 12:44 pm

kiki wrote: So it's a kind of "stepping back" from everything, a shift away from focusing entirely on the content of the mind and into a conscious awareness of that which is aware - the Self, the real You; the silent still presence that is fully here right now. That's the "power of now".
Yes! It's so amazingly simple. Effortless. Whanever we feel that we want something, feel lack of something then it has nothing to do with awareness.
Mind is very powerful tool. It can emulate almost everything on the spiritual path. It can fool us that we are aware. There are no goals. Awareness is gentle, not waiting for anything and not wanting to get anything from present moment. Sometimes when I sit in silence I can feel it.
Maciej
We know about ourselves
only what we've been tested
[Wislawa Szymborska, poet]

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Re: Realising your true self

Post by kiki » Tue Aug 24, 2010 1:23 am

kiki wrote:
Now, the point of this question is not to arrive at any answer from the mind, but to see what exists prior to, during, and after mind activity.


"to see what exists prior to, during, and after mind activity" Would you explain this a bit further? How do you do this?
It's not so much a "doing" but a noticing what's already present. Consciousness is already present, but because it seems to be outwardly directed attention is captured by the content of consciousness. Instead of becoming more and more "entranced" by the content, simply let the content flow of its own accord. Notice how content constantly changes, but without becoming engrossed in the content - let it play, but "stand out of its way". No matter what the content is, the attitude toward it is a simple acceptance of it, an inward "OK" to it. It's as though you are watching a movie while simultaneously becoming more "tuned in" to the screen that it is projected on. Let the movie play - the screen that it is playing on is still, is silent, is "watching", and it "knows" that images (the thoughts, sensations, and feelings) come and go.

kiki wrote:
I spent 27 years practicing a meditation technique in order to become "enlightened", and after all that time I felt I hadn't gotten anywhere and was about to quit the whole business of finding enlightenment.


I understand meditation will not lead to enlightenment but it is still okay to be used for other purposes, isn't it? I myself often meditate but not for become enlightened but simply because it feels good, relaxing and refreshing. I guess that is okay?
Sure, go ahead and meditate - it's a wonderful practice for so many things.

kiki wrote:
Then an interesting thing happened - I suddenly "saw" how kiki the meditator kept himself going --> by meditating!


How did this happen? For example did you read Tolle's book and suddenly you just "saw" it?
It was an insight triggered by what Tolle was saying about ego. Within a few hours after first reading Tolle I saw the truth of what he was saying; within my mind I could see how a certain "bundle of thoughts" weaved themselves together to construct "kiki". Without those thoughts there was no kiki. A particular bundle of thoughts that I identified with strongly were the thoughts that had to do with being a "meditator". Even the mantra that I was using was part of that identity - I asked myself "Who is this that is doing this practice of "meditation?; who is this that thinks he is using a mantra?". I actually looked for that person, but I couldn't find him except as a vague sense of "kiki" that swirled around those thoughts that I had in my mind about him.

And then I asked myself, "How is it that there is the noticing of these thoughts? How is it that when thoughts are no longer present there remains a sense of being, of existing?" That's when it hit me - it was consciousness itself that was "doing" this. And then I felt sort of embarrassed because I realized that that consciousness was always here, and I was just overlooking it because I was more interested in what consciousness was shining its light on. I then knew that I was actually that consciousness and not the thoughts about me that were so familiar, the thoughts that made up the "story of kiki".

kiki wrote:
I could suddenly see/realize that that awareness/Self was here all along, but it was being overlooked in favor of something else.


Yes, I think this is my problem too. Awareness/self is/should be right here in me, but I do not notice it as I am probably stuck in my "seeking for awareneess/self"-mode. I just don't know how to release it, how to let this "seeking mode" go. If I do not seek it then I feel I do nothing for enlightenment and I will never receive its gift. But if I do seek then it seem that I do the wrong thing for enlightenment and I will never receive it either... Huh... What to do (or not to do) then? I do not really know...
It's a relaxing into it so that it can be "seen" by letting go of the compulsion to do something, to achieve something, to get somewhere else, to get to some other time other than now. Now is where it's at, literally.

kiki wrote:
Nothing had to be done for that to happen, no effort expended for consciousness to show up because I could now realize it was already here in its fullness.


Lucky you! But, I guess, without your 27 years of meditation you probably would have not realised this? The lots of mediatation in vain did it "realisable", so after all it was not all in vain?
I don't look at it that way. I don't regret all of those years of meditating - I see that as just more of what played out in consciousness; it wasn't right, it wasn't wrong. It is just what it was.

kiki wrote:
So it's a kind of "stepping back" from everything


Yes, it seems more and more to me that engligtenment, awareness and wisdom is not something we learn or get to know but something that is the result of shedding things along our way.
When what is impermanent drops away what is permanent is seen. What is permanent is the consciousness that is the witness of it all - That's You as you truly are. When that is seen more and more it becomes noticeable even in the midst of what is fleeting/impermanent.
"Miss Kelly, perhaps you'd like this flower. I seem to have misplaced my buttonhole ... Miss Kelly, you know, when you wear my flower you make it look beautiful." Elwood P. Dowd
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Re: Realising your true self

Post by Seeker1977 » Tue Aug 24, 2010 1:01 pm

kiki wrote:It's not so much a "doing" but a noticing what's already present. Consciousness is already present, but because it seems to be outwardly directed attention is captured by the content of consciousness. Instead of becoming more and more "entranced" by the content, simply let the content flow of its own accord. Notice how content constantly changes, but without becoming engrossed in the content - let it play, but "stand out of its way". No matter what the content is, the attitude toward it is a simple acceptance of it, an inward "OK" to it. It's as though you are watching a movie while simultaneously becoming more "tuned in" to the screen that it is projected on. Let the movie play - the screen that it is playing on is still, is silent, is "watching", and it "knows" that images (the thoughts, sensations, and feelings) come and go.
Thank you. I think now I understand (or rather, feel) what should be done (or rather, not done). It is just hard to find that state when I am not entirely "spiritually unconscious" but not "pressing/chasing enlightenment" either. That state where I being aware of thoughts and feelings without watching them intensively with my mind/ego... I know this should be the most natural and easy thing to "do", but it is not for me, for the moment...
kiki wrote:It was an insight triggered by what Tolle was saying about ego. Within a few hours after first reading Tolle I saw the truth of what he was saying;
Yes, I know (or rather felt somewhere deep inside) that his teaching is the truth and it is all right.
kiki wrote:within my mind I could see how a certain "bundle of thoughts" weaved themselves together to construct "kiki". Without those thoughts there was no kiki.
This is the point, where I never really get to. I would like to, but I just cannot... I don't really feel that "bundle of thoughts" that "define my ego". Maybe later? Although I know that one cannot reach enlightenment in the future; can be done only in the now.
kiki wrote:That's when it hit me - it was consciousness itself that was "doing" this.
After this first "awekening" could you always feel this truth so you were always "awakened" or did you slip back time after time into the spiritually unconscious "un-awakened" state?
kiki wrote:It's a relaxing into it so that it can be "seen" by letting go of the compulsion to do something, to achieve something, to get somewhere else, to get to some other time other than now. Now is where it's at, literally.
So, when "you are in the now" do you still have thoughts? If you do and you notice them what do you do with them? Just accept them? Or don't you even have to notice ("watch") them as you are aware of the without noticing ("watching")? I hope it's clear, it is hard to talk about this using language.
“Peace comes from within. Do not seek it without.” -- Buddha

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Re: Realising your true self

Post by kiki » Tue Aug 24, 2010 9:10 pm

kiki wrote:
within my mind I could see how a certain "bundle of thoughts" weaved themselves together to construct "kiki". Without those thoughts there was no kiki.


This is the point, where I never really get to. I would like to, but I just cannot... I don't really feel that "bundle of thoughts" that "define my ego". Maybe later? Although I know that one cannot reach enlightenment in the future; can be done only in the now.
Every thought that references something from "your" past or projects into "your" future is part of that bundle. Every thought that labels something as "good" or "bad" or makes any kind of judgment is part of that bundle. Every thought that references something that "you" have learned or that "you" believe is part of that bundle. Every thought that defines "you" as a separate individual from everything and everyone else is part of that bundle - these kinds of thoughts could include thoughts concerning "my" emotions and "my" sensations. These are the most obvious ones, so take note of them as they arise because each of them helps to reweave your thought-based identity, the ego, and keeps it spinning away, and with that the illusion of "you" is maintained.

What happens to the "me" when those thoughts are no longer playing in the mind? Who/what are you then? The illusion of you is a mental phenomenon only, and without the thoughts that comprise the illusion what's left? What's left is what You really are. Find out what that is. It has to be seen directly for yourself. I won't use a word to define it right now otherwise a whole new thought based identity can get created based on that word, so see it for yourself and then I'll leave it up to you to try to define it.
kiki wrote:
That's when it hit me - it was consciousness itself that was "doing" this.


After this first "awekening" could you always feel this truth so you were always "awakened" or did you slip back time after time into the spiritually unconscious "un-awakened" state?
I'd slip in and out, but very quickly I became alert and attuned to when that happened so that over "time" I would be more and more present. There was a period of time when I'd ask myself, "Is it still now?" LOL! And of course, it always was now; that could no longer be denied - the realization that it always was now seemed to blast a big hole into the whole struggle to "be in the now". It was so obvious that it was always now that thoughts of past or future seemed to dry up rather quickly, and with that drying up thought stream changed from a torrent to a trickle.


kiki wrote:
It's a relaxing into it so that it can be "seen" by letting go of the compulsion to do something, to achieve something, to get somewhere else, to get to some other time other than now. Now is where it's at, literally.


So, when "you are in the now" do you still have thoughts? If you do and you notice them what do you do with them? Just accept them? Or don't you even have to notice ("watch") them as you are aware of the without noticing ("watching")? I hope it's clear, it is hard to talk about this using language.


I still have thoughts, but they are quickly seen to be just thoughts and not "reality"; in other words, I seldom get caught up in identifying with thought. But for the most part thought stream has reduced tremendously. When needed they come, when not needed they are gone, or if not gone they are so faint, subtle, and in the background of awareness that they are no longer distracting me from just being present.

"The compulsion to do something, to achieve something, to get somewhere else, to get to some other time other than now," - the root problem in the preceding quote of mine is solved by investigating directly as to "who" has a compulsion to do something, "who" is trying to achieve something, "who" is trying to get somewhere or looking to the past or future for something while ignoring the present moment. That's why this kind of question is frequently asked by me and by others on this board - it goes directly to the root of every problem by exposing the illusory nature of that "who".

The primary Tolle teaching is that this ego entity cannot spring up without "time" - that's the power of now. And the great revelation is that it is always now! Without the psychological mechanism of the mentally created time known as past and future there is no ego. In other words, if you are simply present fully to what is, thoughts of past and future don't arise and so ego doesn't either, and while abiding in what is the clarity of what you really are becomes more and more obvious..

There is no ego as such; there is only the appearance of something that is called "ego" arising in the mind, and that ego has nothing to hold itself together without thoughts of past and future, without labels or judgment (which are based on thoughts rooted in the past or projected into an imagined future).
"Miss Kelly, perhaps you'd like this flower. I seem to have misplaced my buttonhole ... Miss Kelly, you know, when you wear my flower you make it look beautiful." Elwood P. Dowd
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Re: Realising your true self

Post by Ralph » Tue Aug 24, 2010 10:52 pm

Kiki, ... if you keep this up, we will have change the title of this forum to Kiki's Discussion Community . :D

Thank you.
Last edited by Ralph on Tue Aug 24, 2010 10:57 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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