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Calmly going forward- Andrew's practice notes

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Calmly going forward- Andrew's practice notes Andrew . 7/4/12 12:01 AM
RE: Calmly going forward- Andrew's practice notes Trent . 3/20/12 8:43 AM
RE: Calmly going forward- Andrew's practice notes Andrew . 3/20/12 10:13 AM
RE: Calmly going forward- Andrew's practice notes Trent . 3/20/12 1:11 PM
RE: Calmly going forward- Andrew's practice notes Andrew . 3/20/12 7:10 PM
RE: Calmly going forward- Andrew's practice notes Trent . 3/20/12 9:08 PM
RE: Calmly going forward- Andrew's practice notes aaron . 3/20/12 10:43 PM
RE: Calmly going forward- Andrew's practice notes Andrew . 3/21/12 2:53 AM
RE: Calmly going forward- Andrew's practice notes Change A. 3/20/12 10:44 PM
RE: Calmly going forward- Andrew's practice notes Adam . . 3/20/12 10:53 PM
RE: Calmly going forward- Andrew's practice notes Andrew . 3/20/12 11:59 PM
RE: Calmly going forward- Andrew's practice notes Andrew . 3/21/12 12:47 AM
RE: Calmly going forward- Andrew's practice notes Trent . 3/21/12 1:02 PM
RE: Calmly going forward- Andrew's practice notes Andrew . 3/21/12 6:31 PM
RE: Calmly going forward- Andrew's practice notes Andrew . 3/21/12 9:38 PM
RE: Calmly going forward- Andrew's practice notes Martin M 3/20/12 1:52 PM
RE: Calmly going forward- Andrew's practice notes Andrew . 3/20/12 8:13 PM
RE: Calmly going forward- Andrew's practice notes Steph S 3/20/12 5:02 PM
RE: Calmly going forward- Andrew's practice notes Andrew . 3/20/12 8:11 PM
RE: Calmly going forward- Andrew's practice notes Adam . . 3/20/12 10:51 PM
RE: Calmly going forward- Andrew's practice notes Andrew . 3/21/12 12:11 AM
RE: Calmly going forward- Andrew's practice notes Andrew . 3/21/12 12:31 AM
RE: Calmly going forward- Andrew's practice notes Steph S 3/21/12 12:53 AM
RE: Calmly going forward- Andrew's practice notes Andrew . 3/21/12 1:01 AM
RE: Calmly going forward- Andrew's practice notes Jon T 3/21/12 2:06 AM
RE: Calmly going forward- Andrew's practice notes Steph S 3/21/12 2:29 AM
RE: Calmly going forward- Andrew's practice notes Andrew . 3/21/12 2:45 AM
RE: Calmly going forward- Andrew's practice notes srid ᠎ 3/20/12 11:56 PM
RE: Calmly going forward- Andrew's practice notes Andrew . 3/21/12 12:55 AM
RE: Calmly going forward- Andrew's practice notes Andrew . 3/21/12 3:34 AM
RE: Calmly going forward- Andrew's practice notes Andrew . 3/21/12 8:24 AM
RE: Calmly going forward- Andrew's practice notes srid ᠎ 3/24/12 4:06 PM
RE: Calmly going forward- Andrew's practice notes Andrew . 3/25/12 12:59 AM
RE: Calmly going forward- Andrew's practice notes Andrew . 3/27/12 12:01 AM
RE: Calmly going forward- Andrew's practice notes Jon T 3/27/12 12:06 PM
RE: Calmly going forward- Andrew's practice notes Andrew . 3/28/12 1:35 AM
RE: Calmly going forward- Andrew's practice notes Andrew . 4/2/12 9:34 PM
RE: Calmly going forward- Andrew's practice notes Andrew . 4/3/12 1:18 AM
RE: Calmly going forward- Andrew's practice notes Andrew . 4/3/12 8:27 PM
RE: Calmly going forward- Andrew's practice notes Andrew . 4/4/12 2:02 AM
RE: Calmly going forward- Andrew's practice notes Andrew . 4/30/12 11:12 PM
RE: Calmly going forward- Andrew's practice notes Nikolai . 5/1/12 12:38 AM
RE: Calmly going forward- Andrew's practice notes Andrew . 5/1/12 2:59 AM
RE: Calmly going forward- Andrew's practice notes Andrew . 5/16/12 12:32 AM
RE: Calmly going forward- Andrew's practice notes katy steger,thru11.6.15 with thanks 5/16/12 12:21 PM
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RE: Calmly going forward- Andrew's practice notes Andrew . 5/17/12 2:39 AM
RE: Calmly going forward- Andrew's practice notes Andrew . 5/18/12 2:29 AM
RE: Calmly going forward- Andrew's practice notes Andrew . 6/1/12 12:14 AM
RE: Calmly going forward- Andrew's practice notes Andrew . 6/6/12 8:36 PM
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RE: Question on Intensity Andrew . 6/20/12 12:05 AM
RE: Question on Intensity Felipe C. 6/20/12 10:02 AM
RE: Question on Intensity Andrew . 6/25/12 12:08 AM
RE: Question on Intensity Tarver  6/25/12 12:38 AM
RE: Question on Intensity Andrew . 6/25/12 1:01 AM
RE: Question on Intensity Felipe C. 6/25/12 1:21 AM
RE: Question on Intensity Andrew . 6/25/12 1:35 AM
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RE: Question on Intensity Andrew . 6/26/12 7:58 PM
RE: Question on Intensity Andrew . 6/26/12 11:01 PM
RE: Question on Intensity Andrew . 6/26/12 8:56 PM
RE: Question on Intensity Adam . . 6/27/12 7:07 AM
RE: Question on Intensity Andrew . 6/27/12 9:33 AM
RE: Question on Intensity Andrew . 6/27/12 9:41 PM
RE: Question on Intensity Andrew . 6/28/12 9:26 PM
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RE: Question on Intensity Andrew . 6/29/12 12:33 AM
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RE: Question on Intensity Andrew . 6/29/12 1:13 AM
RE: Question on Intensity Felipe C. 6/29/12 1:34 AM
RE: Question on Intensity Andrew . 6/29/12 2:06 AM
RE: Question on Intensity Nikolai . 6/29/12 2:09 AM
RE: Question on Intensity Andrew . 6/29/12 3:29 AM
RE: Question on Intensity Andrew . 7/4/12 12:38 AM
RE: Question on Intensity Tarver  6/26/12 11:05 PM
RE: Question on Intensity Felipe C. 6/25/12 2:47 PM
RE: Question on Intensity Andrew . 6/25/12 7:43 PM
RE: Question on Intensity Andrew . 6/25/12 8:45 PM
RE: Question on Intensity Jon T 6/26/12 9:55 AM
RE: Calmly going forward- Andrew's practice notes Steph S 3/23/12 5:56 PM
RE: Calmly going forward- Andrew's practice notes Andrew . 3/23/12 11:21 PM
4 July 2012

Before reading this thread you should know that nothing i say in it is what it seems. I have since realised that 'i' as a felt being 'climbed into my head' sometime before I was 6, (certainly I have no memory of being other that I am now), and because of that my main sources of pleasure have been mental and creative. what does this have to do with what follows? basically this; All of my demands, my objections, my points and logic all circle back to me gaining some sort of mental reassurance of my existence. In other words, I just like to hear to the sound of my own thoughts as they are the only 'subtle feelings' i ever had.

I sincerely suggest you skip this thread or read it clearly remembering the above, as it is likely to sully your thinking and otherwise put you off the Actual Freedom Trust which is actually a very sensible and down to earth method of becoming happy and enjoying ones all too brief life.

i will not edit the posts apart from this one, though I am not proud or pleased with many things I say in it. It should stand as yet another example of why one must do what one can while one has the opportunity to be free of ignorance and I highly recommend giving the Actual Freedom Trust an unbiased reading to the best of ones ability, and feel free to question me if that will help as to why I have changed my tune.

Being influenced by online opinions to otherwise object to things one hasn't even comprehended properly is an on going danger of reading material like what follows.

Andrew Jones







Instead of continuing on my hijack of Florian's psychopath thread, which was quickly turning into my defacto practice thread- it really is something that is hitting home hard right now.

More stories form the 'real' world today.

Standing at the sushi bar counter, man comes up reaches across infront of me (there was no one else waiting) and put's his sushi in front of me and the lady serving me. I stand my ground and note the discomfort that this created. alarms going.

instead of moving back or to a more comfortable distance, I stand my ground. I reach accross him to get my chop sticks as if he doesn't exist. i don't move, i pay for my food over the top of his, I behave as if he doesn't exist. Though he unfortunately does.

I get my sushi with chilli flakes and sit down. I can feel the conditioning squirming like I imagine a tapeworm might.

I want to buy a phone for my new 'right livelihood' venture. I go to the phone shop. Nice shop, service is great. Older possibly southern europian bloke walks in and takes immediate 'playfully sarcastic yet with malice' offence at the asian lady behind the counter's question 'are you alright?' (I considered leaving the races out of this, but it struck me as significant)

he rants in a very familiar way. Playful yet biting. Confident and without yelling, but loud. He doesn't stop, just keeps going on about how where he comes from it is 'how can I help you, sir'.

He is 2 metres from me and there are 4 of us total in the shop- 2 behind the counter. he calls across to the man serving me. 'Kevin, I can't find what I want' kevins says, I'll be with you soon'. Man doesn't stop. he starts again on the woman (pregnant wife of Kevin, a well spoken perhaps Malaysian man)

He tries Kevin again. I turn to him and say something like 'he will be with you soon...sir" with sarcastism. he immediately tries it on me saying something along the lines of 'always with the sarcasm, stabbing, needling' making gestures as if he is talking about some group I belong too. . I look at him and say 'there is more than one' Implying i'm not actually sure what, except there was a strange meaning in it something like 'I too am part psycho, but I know it, you don't. There is more than one of us in this shop'. sort of something like that and a mix of the ordinary meaning of 'there are other people in the world too , you rude fuck.'

He shuts up. I'm surprised. i think perhaps his disease is something more benign. Maybe he is just a traumatised old extremely rude man. I can't tell the difference, how would I? but rude is still rude. It could be anything, but his malice was real.

The tension is palpable in me.

I'm immensely impressed with Kevin the salesman serving me. This man had been hassling them for a while I picked up while this was going on. Kevin is ignoring him somehow and is calmly going on explaining the phone contract and features. 'Well done Kevin', I think. I don't give a shit about the phone at this stage. He could have sold me solid gold and mortgaged me till kingdom come, I'm just happy to remember to be calm of sorts. Real calm, hard fought calm. Calm in the face of this prick of a man.

I'm just happy psycho man shuts up, because I'm tired of the world of fucked up people and the fear that produces in me. or vice versa. (solipistic conditioning showing through). The whole time I'm wondering, if he wasn't old and smaller than me, would psycho have backed off? Perhaps now he just preys on pregnant asian shop keepers. i note there no wedding band on his finger. I'm not surprised.

Times like these i know there is something organising my path. It's not 'all good' but I'm smiling somehow anyway and trying like all get out to calm this burning feeling as best my skill allows.

Calm like a bomb, but getting far better at the internal diffusing. Untie! you damn knot! Now was it red wire, or blue wire?...

RE: Calmly going forward- Andrew's practice notes
Answer
3/20/12 8:43 AM as a reply to Andrew ..
hello,

what in this post of yours pertains to a practice that's 'calmly going forward' or a practice inspired by actualism?

RE: Calmly going forward- Andrew's practice notes
Answer
3/20/12 10:13 AM as a reply to Trent ..
Hi Trent,

What in the above is practice? Just about all of it in a messy kind of way.

My practice as a whole turned a corner last year coming into contact with the AFT. Some things came into sharp focus, and some things went off track, but when I considered all the evidence, my practice is still 'inspired by actualism'.

It is all rubber hits the road as I look around and realise 'no matter how I cut this, these things have to be confronted in me, and by extension in my interactions with others. It can't be one without the other.'

I could have kept going with another thread I started titled 'Get me out of here', but decided to start fresh. And as I alluded to in the first sentence, I felt I had better go with the inspiration to explore what Florian had brought up without hijacking his thread.

I don't keep up with who moderates around here these days, but by the tone of your questions I have assumed it is you. Is it not OK to post, in my own words, how I dealt with some situations which I felt relevant today?

I can explain further if i have otherwise misinterpreted genuine questions.

How do you see it not 'pertaining to practice' and 'inspired by actualism'? did i not use the approved words? what in particular makes you regard the interactions as irrelevant to my practice and how actualism has inspired me?

Would you mind letting me know how my practice and my inspiration should sound to you so I can be more careful to make it sound like your practice and your inspiration.

RE: Calmly going forward- Andrew's practice notes
Answer
3/20/12 1:11 PM as a reply to Andrew ..
Andrew Jones:
I don't keep up with who moderates around here these days, but by the tone of your questions I have assumed it is you. Is it not OK to post, in my own words, how I dealt with some situations which I felt relevant today?


i have been actively reading and occasionally moderating when appropriate, but that was not the explicit reason for my response. although, i do understand how it could be read that way. here is why i asked…

Andrew Jones:
How do you see it not 'pertaining to practice' and 'inspired by actualism'?


when i read your post, i see very little that indicates that you are exploring, investigating or trying to understanding yourself / your feelings / ‘me’. i see numerous hints at presumptions and generalizations that do not sound naive at all. your post itself as well as the story you told smacks of passive aggression and resentment, not of harmlessness and happiness. you specifically mention being sarcastic, which couldn’t be further from sincerity. i see no mention of the terms, or allusions to: attentiveness, sensuousness, or apperception. you make no note of lessons learned or of ongoing investigations, and you ask no questions which aren't rhetorical. in general, it sounds to me like you are ranting and venting rather than caring and contemplating. with all that said, and to reiterate: i do not see how your post pertains to practice at all, let alone how it was inspired by actualism.

are you currently putting the actualism method (‘HAIETMOBA’) into action?

RE: Calmly going forward- Andrew's practice notes
Answer
3/20/12 1:52 PM as a reply to Andrew ..
Hi Andrew,

I read your report as your own becoming aware of malice/fear/stress in yourself and in others.

What I´ve observed is that as soon as I become aware of a certain type of 'fault' or misconduct according to my values, I usually tend to not only resent this behaviour in myself but also other people. That´s the starting point for various problematic thought patterns:

- I know what I´m doing wrong, they don´t
- I´m actively trying to resolve my own 'faults', they don´t
etc.

Problematic in so far as it is actually identity-reinforcing, i.e. it´s me (for the right cause and reasons) against them (ignorant and 'psychopathic').
Now it´s not that your observations are neccessarily wrong or inappropriate but what are the benefits in creating that duality?
Not only do I not know (and usually never can know) the actual intentions and motivations for someone elses behaviour but by turning them into an enemy (whom I need to teach proper behaviour) I win nothing but unneccessary (inner) conflict.

The option, to point out someone´s misconduct is still open but there´s a difference between doing it self-invested in order to feel better myself or doing it simply because it is of practical use to me/them or someone else.

Avoiding this duality is of huge benefit for myself because as soon as I start to see a problem without (moral) judgement, it´s much easier to accept as being still a part of myself. With that acceptance, there´s no blame, no guilt and the whole thing is quicker resolved.
No need for all that drama, imho.

RE: Calmly going forward- Andrew's practice notes
Answer
3/20/12 5:02 PM as a reply to Andrew ..
speaking of actualism practices... i have started reading the aft website more frequently again, re-visiting the topic of actual intimacy. what it comes down to is equality, basically.

do you notice with yourself a back-forth that seems similar to how competitiveness is projected on others? as in a duality of dominance and submissiveness? it can play out very subtly, but in my own investigations i have found that when it is projected on others it is a tension of - i'm better than this person or this person is better than me.

RE: Calmly going forward- Andrew's practice notes
Answer
3/20/12 7:10 PM as a reply to Trent ..
Andrew Jones:

I can explain further if i have otherwise misinterpreted genuine questions.

How do you see it not 'pertaining to practice' and 'inspired by actualism'? did i not use the approved words? what in particular makes you regard the interactions as irrelevant to my practice and how actualism has inspired me?



I didn't misinterpret the reasons you questioned my post, so I leave it with you to decide what to do with it.

RE: Calmly going forward- Andrew's practice notes
Answer
3/20/12 8:13 PM as a reply to Martin M.
Thanks for the reply Martin,

Yes I very much think you are correct, becoming aware (again) of why this needs to be done. There is some sort of sickness going around.

Remaining calm in the face of both my own particular conditioning and and the manifestations of others is not easy though. Learning a certain assertiveness without the sarcasm taking over, standing my ground without aggression. Not easy.

I walked away from the events yesterday wondering what happened...more determined to remain truly calm without bypassing the issue.

I guess there is a duality being created, or simply being stirred up. I have plenty of us versus them conditioning.

Martin M:

The option, to point out someone´s misconduct is still open but there´s a difference between doing it self-invested in order to feel better myself or doing it simply because it is of practical use to me/them or someone else.


This is my intention, but as I recorded, not the outcome. But avoiding the tension, and inevitable falling short of my better judgement doesn't seem to be any healthier. It seemed good practice not to slink away as I might ordinarily into resentment and 'I should have' but to rather do what seems right, no matter how uncomfortable it is to do it.

I won't stand by and watch kids at the pool, pregnant ladies, or even me, be pushed around. I don't see than benefiting anyone, or my practice.

Avoiding the duality? sounds great, and I agree in principle, though as I candidly posted, I'm generally avoiding my own internal conflict by not making a stand, which is hardly avoiding duality, more like avoiding reality. again i agree in principle and will remember to have a look at how that plays out today.

thanks

RE: Calmly going forward- Andrew's practice notes
Answer
3/20/12 8:11 PM as a reply to Steph S.
Hi Steph,

Steph S:

do you notice with yourself a back-forth that seems similar to how competitiveness is projected on others?


definitely there is internal back and forth. Though I have to revert to my previous solipsism to say that the man standing and nearly pushing me out of the way at the sushi bar was projection, or the domineering man at the phone shop was interrupting and talking over me and Kevin was all in my head. It seemed entirely real.

it could be more that normally I would slink back and choose not to. i don't know where that is filed under in practice.

perhaps it is like when one buys an item and from then on in can't help but see it everywhere. There is more than one explanation for that as well. (perhaps htc phones did get popular right when I bought one?, perhaps I have been dancing to the tune of psychos and just didn't notice, one of the psychos being 'me')

it didn't cross my mind that I was better than anyone in the situations, more so that I certainly felt I did not play the part expected by the antagonist. Again there are more than one explanation of why any of it happens, so I value your take on it.

thanks

RE: Calmly going forward- Andrew's practice notes
Answer
3/20/12 9:08 PM as a reply to Andrew ..
hello,

well, just in case you didn't understand me, please allow me to clarify: i did not post because you 'did not use (some) approved words', nor because i disapprove of your words, or anything of the suchlike. i chose to respond using actualism terminology because it facilitates clear communication appropriate to the context set by the category you created the thread in. that i chose to use those words instead of others in no way removes the meaning those words were meant to convey, which were quite deliberately pointed toward showing you that you don't seem to be practicing anything even remotely similar to what actualism is on about. if you do happen to be practicing well, then my post may simply serve as a helpful guideline as to what sort of themes you might want to consider including in future posts; including those will help others help you, and help you help yourself.

are you currently putting the actualism method (‘HAIETMOBA’) into action?

RE: Calmly going forward- Andrew's practice notes
Answer
3/20/12 10:43 PM as a reply to Trent ..
Now seems like a good time to insert the following from: http://www.actualfreedom.com.au/richard/articles/thismomentofbeingalive.htm

"Note: *asking how one is experiencing this moment of being alive is not the actualism method*; consistently *enjoying and appreciating this moment of being alive is what the actualism method is*. And this is because the actualism method is all about consciously and knowingly imitating life in the actual world. Also, by virtue of proceeding in this manner the means to the end – an ongoing enjoyment and appreciation – are no different to the end itself."

RE: Calmly going forward- Andrew's practice notes
Answer
3/20/12 10:44 PM as a reply to Trent ..
Does Richard consider you to be actually free? Or is it just yourself?

RE: Calmly going forward- Andrew's practice notes
Answer
3/20/12 10:51 PM as a reply to Andrew ..
Hey Andrew, I think you might be going slightly off track in a certain way, I find myself there often, however having realized it clearly as a specific issue has helped me keep it from happening as much.

It seems that you are perhaps idealizing a way of being in the real world, rather than a 'not-being'. You seem to be focused on being 'calm' and you are observing the behavior of others and categorizing them as good/bad i.e. acting calm/not calm.

Something I look for when this happens to me is where my motivation is coming from. Is it coming from imagining situations in which i am acting, speaking, or thinking in a certain way and then feeling good about those imagined situations, or is my motivation coming from and interest in well-being (without boundaries about who this well-being is for or how much of it there is) here and now? It is often the former, in which case I investigate whether being in the former way or the latter way is preferable here and now, and do the sensible thing and be the latter way, as it is preferable.


This is what I'm drawing from mostly:
I'm immensely impressed with Kevin the salesman serving me. This man had been hassling them for a while I picked up while this was going on. Kevin is ignoring him somehow and is calmly going on explaining the phone contract and features. 'Well done Kevin', I think. I don't give a shit about the phone at this stage. He could have sold me solid gold and mortgaged me till kingdom come, I'm just happy to remember to be calm of sorts. Real calm, hard fought calm. Calm in the face of this prick of a man.


Is what you are idealizing a sort of "power" a sort of 'winning-out' of one person over another by not being perturbed by their attempts to perturb? If your intentions are based on this win/lose idea you will not be happy and harmless, you can be very very calm, like those cool spies in action movies, you can show no sign of injury or anger or whatever, but the happiness got from acting calm is nothing to the happiness from being happy and harmless.

RE: Calmly going forward- Andrew's practice notes
Answer
3/20/12 10:53 PM as a reply to Change A..
Does Richard consider you to be actually free? Or is it just yourself?


aman, are you trying to derail this thread to push along an agenda?

RE: Calmly going forward- Andrew's practice notes
Answer
3/20/12 11:56 PM as a reply to Andrew ..
hi andrew,

the way the actualism method works, you keep your hands in your pocket until the initial feeling subsides. looking at what you wrote (your sarcastic response for instance), it looks as if you have failed to do so.

Andrew Jones:
I'm trying like all get out to calm this burning feeling as best my skill allows.

it is basically impossible to practice actualism without first preventing much of the flurry of reactions to the initial feeling.

vineeto wrote about this in How to Investigate Feelings:

vineeto:
The first thing to become aware of and understand was my automatic reaction of suppression or expression in order to be able to experience the feeling fully that I am then able to label and examine.
I began to notice that when I stopped fighting having the feeling or stopped feeding the feeling, its intensity was immediately reduced significantly and then I was be able to take a closer look of what has caused this particular feeling to appear in the first place.

RE: Calmly going forward- Andrew's practice notes
Answer
3/20/12 11:59 PM as a reply to Change A..
Hi Aman,

Although not directed at me, such a question does have an agenda. i don't care what Richard or anyone thinks of Trent or anyone else, it seems to be the heart of why I can't get traction sometimes, thinking of who said what and what that means. infact to be honest, I really don't want to know. I would prefer to simply talk with Trent.

Besides, I am more than capable of derailing this thread by myself. That's not a 'go away' just, I posted this in here out of honesty with myself, (that my practice, though perhaps mostly looking like something else to others, is actualism inspired) i may have taken the limits of that inspiration a bit liberally, but i wanted to discuss it and it seemed the place. So, with respect and if you don't mind, please start another thread on that topic.

cheers mate.

RE: Calmly going forward- Andrew's practice notes
Answer
3/21/12 12:11 AM as a reply to Adam . ..
a da m:

This is what I'm drawing from mostly:
I'm immensely impressed with Kevin the salesman serving me. This man had been hassling them for a while I picked up while this was going on. Kevin is ignoring him somehow and is calmly going on explaining the phone contract and features. 'Well done Kevin', I think. I don't give a shit about the phone at this stage. He could have sold me solid gold and mortgaged me till kingdom come, I'm just happy to remember to be calm of sorts. Real calm, hard fought calm. Calm in the face of this prick of a man.


Is what you are idealizing a sort of "power" a sort of 'winning-out' of one person over another by not being perturbed by their attempts to perturb? If your intentions are based on this win/lose idea you will not be happy and harmless, you can be very very calm, like those cool spies in action movies, you can show no sign of injury or anger or whatever, but the happiness got from acting calm is nothing to the happiness from being happy and harmless.


i think you have nailed it a da m. That is what i have been imagining, and letting that picture develop like you have pointed out I can see the fear behind it. that fear came out in what I said to him, "there is more than one" that mix of implying I was somehow 'one' while appealing to the more general 'more than one person here' angle.

I was appealing and threatening in one hit.

so here is a general question, when confronted by injustice, by deliberate threats of intimidation, what do people suggest? i felt i had to stand my ground, (in three seperate situations, one i shared in Forians psycho thread, 2 here) yet the result is not really any sort of calming of the reaction.

more advice?

RE: Calmly going forward- Andrew's practice notes
Answer
3/21/12 12:31 AM as a reply to Andrew ..
So just to follow up that thought, 'happy and harmless' in practice effectively deals with this sort of confrontation and 'no one gets hurt'?

RE: Calmly going forward- Andrew's practice notes
Answer
3/21/12 12:47 AM as a reply to Trent ..
Trent .:


are you currently putting the actualism method (‘HAIETMOBA’) into action?


roughly. without the question. Whatever is happening I seek to calmly observe, coming back to where i am, noticing honestly as much of the detail as possible and coming back to the senses and space around me. Lately I have been having some success with my practice, in that until a few days ago, I was happy. In the face of the evidence though, I'm careful not to avoid feelings such as the ones I started this thread to explore.

RE: Calmly going forward- Andrew's practice notes
Answer
3/21/12 12:53 AM as a reply to Andrew ..
Andrew Jones:

so here is a general question, when confronted by injustice, by deliberate threats of intimidation, what do people suggest? i felt i had to stand my ground, (in three seperate situations, one i shared in Forians psycho thread, 2 here) yet the result is not really any sort of calming of the reaction.


have you heard the phrases "the calm before the storm" or "the quiet storm"? i have mistaken "the quiet storm" for a sort of calmness before. it sits really deep in the stomach and moves slowly, but if you pay really close attention, the slowness is just a building anger. emotions don't start off at peak intensity automatically.

what is it that you perceive as a deliberate threat of intimidation? and has the storm already started brewing at that point?

steph

RE: Calmly going forward- Andrew's practice notes
Answer
3/21/12 12:55 AM as a reply to srid ᠎.
Hi srid,

thanks for the reply. i find it difficult to read the AF site. I seem to miss the point being made for all the words. Reading it I feel dizzy and distrustful these days. I think i get distracted too easily by the various ideas, and far too many questions come to mind.

i however don't mind hearing how people are practicing it here, I like it a lot. (reading Ross, Jon, Tommy et al) It seems that i need to have others filter out the stuff that sets me off sometimes.

cheers

RE: Calmly going forward- Andrew's practice notes
Answer
3/21/12 1:01 AM as a reply to Steph S.
Hi Steph,

yes i guess the storm is already going before I know it is. which is the reason I've come back to this. I have some sort of calm, a happy calm even, though these deep fears are not being touched, and when I do, i really don't know who to believe.

The storm is brewing at that point. I guess, though, it doesn't really stop in the first place. What happens when you perceive someone is trying to manipulate you? What happens when they succeed?


cheers

RE: Calmly going forward- Andrew's practice notes
Answer
3/21/12 2:06 AM as a reply to Andrew ..
What happens when you perceive someone is trying to manipulate you? What happens when they succeed?



That is almost impossible. They would have to understand shit about me that i don't understand. Almost everyone (if not everyone) who would try to manipulate me understand themselves far less than i understand 'me'. Slow it down. enjoy your breakfast. enjoy your kids as they make noise and do stupid kid stuff. take walks. think long and hard about everything to the point of mental exhaustion. observe feeling as it rises up. observe calm (the relative lack of feeling). compare and contrast the two. notice the leaves and the birds, the rims, the suns glint, the sound of breaks and the wind. Keep posting. Keep telling us your story. i enjoy reading it. When typing, notice how you think. Notice finger on keyboard too.

jon

RE: Calmly going forward- Andrew's practice notes
Answer
3/21/12 2:29 AM as a reply to Andrew ..
Andrew Jones:

yes i guess the storm is already going before I know it is. which is the reason I've come back to this. I have some sort of calm, a happy calm even, though these deep fears are not being touched, and when I do, i really don't know who to believe.


if you're aware there are deep fears, aren't they beginning to get touched upon? or do you mean you don't know what to do with deep fears when they're around?

The storm is brewing at that point. I guess, though, it doesn't really stop in the first place. What happens when you perceive someone is trying to manipulate you? What happens when they succeed?


better to start asking these questions of yourself, than of me, otherwise you'll just wind up with my investigations. what's perceived to be at stake in manipulation (or put a different way... what exactly is happening/what is behind manipulation?) what would cause you to feel manipulated, and what would it take for you to not feel manipulated?

RE: Calmly going forward- Andrew's practice notes
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3/21/12 2:45 AM as a reply to Steph S.
thanks Jon, Steph,

yes they are good questions to ask myself, coupled with what a da m spotted, I don't think my picture of what is going to happen/ is happening has ever been accurate. I'll ask those questions of myself and see what comes up.

Thanks for the help, I guess I just couldn't get past this fear last year, and hadn't been able to get enough calm to even ask for help,(even in my own confused story telling way!)

RE: Calmly going forward- Andrew's practice notes
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3/21/12 2:53 AM as a reply to aaron ..
thanks for the clarification aaron. i have not been back to that question, but it was buggin me the sort of dual method there, but I think I'm starting to understand what part I'm missing, or have let go of over the last few months. I was striving very hard last year and lost sight of the basic calm-abiding , so i had to really come back to that, now I'm confronting it again 'fresh'.

Someone posted something this morning elsewhere about forgiveness that i need to hear as well. there is a fair whack of blame wrapped up in my fears.

cheers

RE: Calmly going forward- Andrew's practice notes
Answer
3/21/12 3:34 AM as a reply to Andrew ..
I had another go at reading that link. It is his conclusions and assertions that throw me. Also the 'silly' bit. Anyway, I think, for the first time, I had a take it or leave it thought appear along side the objections.

thanks srid.

RE: Calmly going forward- Andrew's practice notes
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3/21/12 8:24 AM as a reply to Andrew ..
end of the day now, and thanks to the advice recieved here, I have spent the last couple of hours with a fresh feeling of inspiration. Rereading the 'this moment of being alive' article with it's revamped and simplified message that 'happy and harmless' and enjoying each moment is the actualism method, coupled with the advice of Jon's to enjoy the kids, and to question why I would think that things would be the same if I had been 'happy and harmless' in the recent events. My version of calm isn't enough.

happy and harmless
I haven't really given that, and that alone, a go. I really did give happy a go, but the harmless I didn't get. I did a lot of social identity breaking down, but it just got scary fast, happy and harmless together may just have a power I haven't even considered, that things change far more profoundly than just what I may be experiencing subjectively. Those stories could have been far different with a 'harmless' outcome for all.

cheers everyone.

RE: Calmly going forward- Andrew's practice notes
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3/21/12 1:02 PM as a reply to Andrew ..
hi,

Andrew Jones:
Trent .:


are you currently putting the actualism method (‘HAIETMOBA’) into action?


roughly. without the question. Whatever is happening I seek to calmly observe, coming back to where i am, noticing honestly as much of the detail as possible and coming back to the senses and space around me. Lately I have been having some success with my practice, in that until a few days ago, I was happy. In the face of the evidence though, I'm careful not to avoid feelings such as the ones I started this thread to explore.


do you mean that you're non-verbally applying the question, or do you mean that you are not being inquisitive? anyhow, the question part of it is important, so try to make sure that it is part of what you're doing. it is probably a very good idea to actually ask the full phrase (perhaps just mentally) for quite some time. in the past, i have observed that some people dropped that part of it too quickly, since after returning to it at my suggestion, they mentioned to me that they did find it useful (for varied reasons). after all, it's not like there's anything to lose by asking the question in full.

RE: Calmly going forward- Andrew's practice notes
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3/21/12 6:31 PM as a reply to Trent ..
Thanks Trent.

I started yesterday afternoon asking the full question, I can see that it does have an effect. The full question somehow stirs up a mix of feelings and give the mind something to do while actually getting back to the senses. I hadn't noticed it before, well actually I did, but not it's usefulness, I just thought 'this is cumbersome and boring' but I think that is the point, it is that length and engagement that takes the mind off the story telling for a second or two for a better glimpse at the world/feelings..

Thanks for persevering Trent, despite my combative responses.

cheers

RE: Calmly going forward- Andrew's practice notes
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3/21/12 9:38 PM as a reply to Andrew ..
i think I have a feeling bad hangover from yesterday...can't wake up at work and it's 10:30am!

RE: Calmly going forward- Andrew's practice notes
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3/23/12 5:56 PM as a reply to Andrew ..
This pic somehow reminded me of this post. No need to let the haters hating get to you, Andrew. Be the kid on the unicorn. lol


RE: Calmly going forward- Andrew's practice notes
Answer
3/23/12 11:21 PM as a reply to Steph S.
oh yeah baby!!! hahaha

thanks for that, I needed a laugh. I'm going to show the kids that one...

RE: Calmly going forward- Andrew's practice notes
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3/24/12 4:06 PM as a reply to Andrew ..
Andrew Jones:

Reading [the AF website] I feel dizzy and distrustful these days. I think i get distracted too easily by the various ideas, and far too many questions come to mind.
[...]
It seems that i need to have others filter out the stuff that sets me off sometimes.
[...]
It is his conclusions and assertions that throw me . Also the 'silly' bit.


along the way of practising the actualism method, you may find it necessary to look into those feelings of distrust (or trust) and confusion (or faith) as to how they prevent you from enjoying and appreciating this moment of being alive[1] even while reading the reports of other actualists (Vineeto, in this case) - as it is the same feelings of distrust (or trust) and confusion (or faith) that sweep into communication with others, non-actualists included.

for a start, why not try taking the other's words at face value?

[1]: personally, i much prefer this phrase to "being happy and harmless"

Andrew Jones:

I did a lot of social identity breaking down, but it just got scary fast, happy and harmless together may just have a power I haven't even considered


interesting; would you mind elaborating on this? at one point, very recently in fact, i started giving more importance to enjoying and appreciating this moment of being alive, and bring in investigation only when it is needed; and even when doing the investigation i always try to keep the recent memory of feeling good at the back of my mind (as an immediate aim) so as to not go off the track. and that made a huge difference in practice.

i would not have progressed this far, if it not for the goenka vipassana practice that tremendously helped cut off the "reactions" (i had to let go of many aspects of vipassana practice in order to apply the actualism method, but that is a topic for a different thread).

at the same time, there are a bunch of stuff i could dig in even further to make my progress fast, and i wonder what is preventing me from doing so, and what i can do to get over that hindrance.... something to do with lingering stake to continue to feel this way or that way (even if only for a few moments before getting back to feeling good), i guess?

RE: Calmly going forward- Andrew's practice notes
Answer
3/25/12 12:59 AM as a reply to srid ᠎.
srid .:

Andrew Jones:

I did a lot of social identity breaking down, but it just got scary fast, happy and harmless together may just have a power I haven't even considered


interesting; would you mind elaborating on this?


Sort of like Ghandi's peaceful resistance movement, that things actually work out very differently in the face of 'harmless'. I had seen harmless as more of a goal rather than a method.

So as a method of interaction, rather than a goal, together with HAIETMOBA, social interactions play out differently than feared.


Practice today.

Lots of calm-abiding sitting, just relaxing the background of buzzing ache in my chest. Very free form, relaxing without rules. E.g. My back has an old whiplash injury from 20 years ago. After 15 mins it starts to ache. normally i would try to push through, but rather I stretched, relaxing the tension associated with 'breaking the rules'. Then some walking, then another sit. Then I went back to a work problem, then sat again when I got tense. Also using haietmoba at intervals.

HAIETMOBA has a subtle scariness to me at the moment. No doubt to do with my ongoing back and forth over what to use of the actualist method and what not to, but also very clearly the feeling of being trapped behind my eyes, unable to really be 'naive' in the face of the immensity of the 3D space around me in all it's complexity and obvious wonder. I feel cut off from that wonder, though I can feel the challenging nature of the question (not all the time, sometimes boredom sets in, or the pressures of family and work just overwhelm the sublte awareness, though I still ask the question.)

I am very aware of how inconsistant I am as a personality, one moment objecting to actualism then the next practicing it.

RE: Calmly going forward- Andrew's practice notes
Answer
3/27/12 12:01 AM as a reply to srid ᠎.
srid .:
i started giving more importance to enjoying and appreciating this moment of being alive, and bring in investigation only when it is needed; and even when doing the investigation i always try to keep the recent memory of feeling good at the back of my mind (as an immediate aim) so as to not go off the track. and that made a huge difference in practice.



I've basically been doing it this way as well, not investigating unless absolutely needed, rather calming the feelings down and simply noticing as much of the senses as I can.

I'll see how that goes.

Still alot of buzzing frustration to do with boredom, nervousness and work/home pressure. I've been more sensitive to see the causes of this instead of lament the moment, realising more of 'ah, this is because I didn't get enough sleep' rather than 'my job is boring me to death' ha ha whatching the relationship between what i spend my time doing and how I feel in the following hours. Realising the lag between the two, and catching the pattern early in some cases.

Underlying 'achievement/interest lust' is at a peak right now. I've got 'irons in the fire' all over the place, each day seeing something more I want to learn or do. Underneath it is the fear of death I think. No sure what to do with that one yet.

RE: Calmly going forward- Andrew's practice notes
Answer
3/27/12 12:06 PM as a reply to Andrew ..
Andrew Jones:

Still alot of buzzing frustration to do with boredom, nervousness and work/home pressure. I've been more sensitive to see the causes of this instead of lament the moment, realising more of 'ah, this is because I didn't get enough sleep' rather than 'my job is boring me to death' ha ha whatching the relationship between what i spend my time doing and how I feel in the following hours. Realising the lag between the two, and catching the pattern early in some cases.


hi.

Someone correct me if I'm wrong. In vipassana, they say to observe the boredom and look for it's 3 characteristics. In actualism, feel the boredom. Recognize that it is 'you' (as is the response to it). Notice something (preferably a tactile sensation) to compare it against. Recognize that that tactile sensation is actual.

I'm not sure boredom is a primal emotion or a leanred one. My guess is that it's a bit of both. I could speculate but that's all it'd be. The above paragraph deals with the primal aspects of the condition. You'll have to come with your own social deconstruction remedy to deal with that aspect of it. Keep both in mind and do both.

If boredom is a major problem, you may want to keep a private journal devoted specifically to that. Jot down when and where you feel bored, the strateg(ies) you intend to use, when you noticed the boredom was no longer there and the aprox time duration, and which strategies worked best. Keep it very quick and very simple and read through it daily, weekly and monthly. Don't make this an extra task.

Underlying 'achievement/interest lust' is at a peak right now. I've got 'irons in the fire' all over the place, each day seeing something more I want to learn or do. Underneath it is the fear of death I think. No sure what to do with that one yet.


There isn't anything to learn. The thing to do is repetitive contemplation. Keeping private journals is good and may keep you on point. Quoting the most difficult parts of practice from your private journal to post onto this journal to solicit advice is good. If this is your only journal then you may find yourself trying to remember realizations to post. This will distract you from contemplation (realizations need not be codified and probably never transfer from one individual to another).

I doubt the fear of death will leave until the very end.

RE: Calmly going forward- Andrew's practice notes
Answer
3/28/12 1:35 AM as a reply to Jon T.
Thanks Jon.

Practice wise, I've been concentrating on the Question (how am I etc) and happy and harmless exclusively, and it is good. On the happy side, I've been looking for any subtle peacefulness, even if possibly 'imaginal', and found traces of it even when completely immersed in the burning chest syndrome. happy with that progress. I use a intensely happy moment from 10 years ago to compare with and contemplate how to let go of the various tensions/ stressful thoughts etc and look for traces of that moment again.

i'm quite thankful right now for the thread Florian started (about psychopathy) and the what has been discussed in it, this has been a sticking point for months now, various fears and reactions and back and forth etc. I feel a confidence, a gentle hopefulness to give 'the wide and wonderous path' another bash. Though I'm aware of limiting my practice to the 3 basic things (asking how am I etc, returning to as close to happy as i can, and choosing 'harmless' responses in my interactions)

Regarding boredom, I just don't know. for me I'm making efforts simply to change careers so I can give myself a chance. I have that luxury so I should use it and be thankful for it, which i am. No doubt, I will be dealing with the exact same obstacles, but hopefully with some reprieve in between battles rather than all day and night as it is now.

I have been noticing the silliness of a few thought though like "don't be too pleased with that' - what a silly thing! Be pleased, be happy with it, enjoy whatever elation achievement brings and use it as a launchpad for a good session of 'how am I experiencing this eternal moment of being alive, am i happy and harmless?' and silently letting that confronting feeling wash over me. then calmly relaxing in whatever manner I can mentally, accepting the consequences of any previous moment and in knowledge that present effort to let go of all the tension being read as 'a 'me' being bored etc' will result in a moment of fleeting freedom (even now).

RE: Calmly going forward- Andrew's practice notes
Answer
4/2/12 9:34 PM as a reply to Jon T.
Jon T:

realizations need not be codified and probably never transfer from one individual to another.



That is classic. It expresses how it feels to write anything down, even reading my own words doesn't bring back the realisations!

Wylo's invitation to do some direct pointing reminded me of the obvious similarities with 'breaking down the social identity' and noticing 'no self', very much all about causes, and seeing causes rather than seeing self. His method posted on liberation nation is a good summary of the method and I believe uses the same core mechanism as actualism minus the happy bit. Add happy and harmless and that's about all I'll ever remember to do anyway!

Physically, I've had a very tight knot just below the solar plexis off and on for days now. I realised that alot of my 'calming' has been more of a resignation, and actually sinks into the feeling with an 'oh well' rather than an effective breaking it up a bit to get happy happening. looking at whether it is a self, (whether the totality of my felt presence fits in this knot), seeing that it doesn't, seeing the causes spin off it. getting back to the sensations and especially the space around.

Thinking thoughts like' it is OK to relax right now, this trauma is not about now' having some confidence that the methods are converging into something that is a realization suited to this bodymind's particular situation rather than an approximate imitation of a codified method.

Still asking HAIETMOBA alot, very effective at bring the mind out from the thoughts to the space around, happy and harmless going OK, adding 'no self' now a bit, as 'social identity' just had me confused I think, but I think they amount to the same basic process of considering the causes of actions to avoid bypassing. I actually think I'm almost incapable of spiritual bypassing in a 'float away with the fairies' way. My bypassing is more of the 'sink with the demons' type, finding reasons to remain angry and discontent.

RE: Calmly going forward- Andrew's practice notes
Answer
4/3/12 1:18 AM as a reply to Andrew ..
The more I look at identity today the more apparent it is that there is only one main thing going on; verbal thought is me, everything else is happening to me. Of course, when feeling this, there is no termination or resolution in this verbal stream, it just keeps talking and feelings keep on happening!

If I think; 'these feelings are me' they intensify and cause a verbal reaction, a help me! response. I am drawn to the idea of reconnecting these feelings as 'me', as being internally distant yet overwhelmed makes them hard to know what is going on. The other day, having some tears in my eyes, not crying so much, just tears, afterwards I felt much lighter. I don't know how any of that fits with any method, though I remember reading somewhere someone say 'you haven't really started until you have sat on the cushion balling your eyes out"

this appeals to me, if only for a few moments of feeling light...

RE: Calmly going forward- Andrew's practice notes
Answer
4/3/12 8:27 PM as a reply to Andrew ..
I've been adding this phrase "my feelings are me" to my practice yesterday and this morning and it has dissolved that knot in my solar plexis (actually sort of watered it down and it has spread into my head!). It is a little confronting, like a drug or something, but right somehow. there may be no 'self', but my thoughts definitely had dibs on it, the idea of the feelings being 'not me' was far too easy, the thought 'these thought are not me' impossible!

just letting feelings have equal 'I' rights for once in my life. there is a peace this morning from it, not rejecting the feelings (well really it a single feeling, a big tangled buzzing mess!) I've always lamented (to the best of my stunted emotional ability) not being able to feel much more than this 'angry knot'.

there is something healing about it.

RE: Calmly going forward- Andrew's practice notes
Answer
4/4/12 2:02 AM as a reply to Andrew ..
I have had a really good day doing this "I am my feelings" thing. No boredom; everytime something gets felt I just saying internally "I am this feeling"

If nothing else it got me through the day at a more mindful/ how am I experiencing this? frame of mind while actually getting some work done as well.

nice.

RE: Calmly going forward- Andrew's practice notes
Answer
4/30/12 11:12 PM as a reply to Andrew ..
Hi Mods,
Is it possible to move this thread to the 'practice journal' section?

Anyway, been thinking less and being more present using smiling as a trigger to remember. so far so good.

what I wrote about it on vipassanaforum;
been running an 'experiment' for the last 5 days with smiling, keeping a log of it on my blog. So far has resulted in some positive things, the highlight being a brief moment of sensory clarity characterised by a feeling of growing taller, and the sensory field becoming more immediate. that was last friday. over the weekend forgetting to smile become increasingly frequent, but something else has become apparent; i can use the memory of that brief moment to help clarify what I am doing right now and use the practice of smiling as a physical cue to remember the general direction of that more pristine 'mindful moment'.

i realise that I can use this memory function to keep the momentum going towards more of the same. No repeats yet, but ironically, I'm glad to be back at work today where i can smile away without getting bombarded with family life.


the spin off being I don't think to much about things in depth, just enough to get back to some sort of 'happy with being here' practice and that's it, the extended thoughts about life and society etc do not help much. Only the smile which triggers the memory to be sensate and relax into awareness (while also taking effort to maintain, distracting the mind from whatever grievance/story/monologue it was spinning) is useful. it is setting up the classic, 'which way of being is better?' for the mind to incline towards the obvious best state. Using HAIETMOBA pop up on my computer to remember to smile and relax into the moment.

Far less boredom at work, and a pleasant sense of achievement in having simplified what I have been doing down to something having positive effects and less reactivity (as is my usual MO, if anyone hasn't already noticed.)

edit: hyperbole removed.

emoticon

RE: Calmly going forward- Andrew's practice notes
Answer
5/1/12 12:38 AM as a reply to Andrew ..
Andrew Jones:
Hi Mods,
Is it possible to move this thread to the 'practice journal' section?


Done!

RE: Calmly going forward- Andrew's practice notes
Answer
5/1/12 2:59 AM as a reply to Nikolai ..
cheers Nick.

RE: Calmly going forward- Andrew's practice notes
Answer
5/16/12 12:32 AM as a reply to Andrew ..
The last 3 weeks

25th April

My new system that I'll be trailing for the next month; 1) Smile all the time, deliberately. just a wry grin, nothing too goofy.. 2) Free form Attention to now in all it's... 'whatever it isness'... 3) Sit, breath, relax every morning. No fancy stuff, just calmly attentive and following rule 1,2. I'll keep a log in the comments.


26 April 2012 01:38
5:30am -calm abiding on the sofa.

all day wry smile. nothing over done,barely noticable really. Took some effort at times, can get a little tiring, but nothing a few seconds of adjustment doesn't fix.

Feeling good, no real boredom, it has kept me quite relaxed and given me something to concentrate on all day.

Now time to go home, let see if I can keep it up under heavy fire...



26 April 2012 18:10
Day 2 morning sit. 6:00am 2 x 20 mins calm abiding. Sense of mental self having no felt equivalent, like it is in one section of the left part of mental space not effecting the feelings in the chest/body. Just one big 'self' without the division. Not as spectacular as that sounds. got very still at one point.

Dealing with kids much easier, no depth of anger behind telling them off!

Still smiling. Gentle peace growing very subtly in the background, the cost of smiling (slight ache and effort) seems worth it so far.


26 April 2012 21:12
Lunch time walk. Smiling, background peacefulness. Very encouraging.

Had a moment where I felt I grew taller and perception openned up. Very nice. Lasted around 15 secs at a guess,

smells and sights and sounds all being perceived without any (much) focused effort, all effort is directed towards maintaining the grin.

Liking this.

there is a feeling that comes and goes to stop smiling, it starts in the eyes and i feel them not smiling, but it's not torture to keep smiling. A few times I've stopped for a brief stretch of the face.



28 April 2012 03:15
Day 3

Challenging day. Morning sit hijacked by pervious late night, couldn't stay awake. Smiling still, though last night witnessed the failure under fire of this method. Highlighted the need to look closely at how I'm dealing with my kids.

The contrast between feeling ok and having a background peace/ broad awareness, to yelling at the kids makes the fall att the more painful and obvious. I've decide to use humor as a defence here. Just to find some smart comment or joke to get throught the conditioning.

Still smiling, though forgetting more often today. The remembrance of that moment at lunch on friday motivates me to find a solution to whatever interrupts the flow of happiness being generated through smiling. reminded myself tonight it is not about me experiencing peace, but removing the causes of there not being peace all the time.



28 April 2012 03:18
Also it occurrred to me to try and smile with my eyes and mind more often as that is where 'fake smiles' don't reach. And is also the direction from which the inclination to stop smiling comes, down the face. So smiling with the eyes and mind is the next step in this practice.



29 April 2012 02:16
Day four. Kids soccer, not too hard to smile, but this practice is highlighting how much I need to make changes in my household to even hope of getting it working there. Though I am noticing that it has kicked in my lateral thinking a bit and new ideas are happening.

Day 5. tough night. Couldn't sleep, not good. I keep forgetting to smile and it is testing my faith in this test, though still it's not hard to do, but isn't changing my mood in the house. Not strong enough.

Still things are getting sorted out in how I'm relating to the kids and has sharpened my resolve to spend time sorting things out.



29 April 2012 07:15
Forgetting to smile all the time. It is an eye opener who something so simple can slip. Not to worry, 25 days to go, and I go back to work tomorrow. Ironically, it is easier to do this practice there. Looking forward to another lunch time session.

tonight I've been endeavoring to remember those moments of fleeting pre-symbolic awareness in the hope of mixing that memor in with all the other mind states, associating them with now again and again. (sati anyone?)

Smiling again.


29 April 2012 18:18
At work, and smiling. My pop up HAIETMOBA program helps remind me.

buddha had it right when he characterised mindfulness as 'remembering'. Dude might be onto something...


30 April 2012 01:42
Fair amount of smiling and 'mixing' the memory of those heightened moments with ordinary things during the day, inclining simply to the memory, no effort to reproduce the state, just effort to remember to remember and relate it to what is happening.

smile has kept boredom at bay.



30 April 2012 18:33
Day 6
another late night working (11:30pm) and headache resulted in no morning sit. Noticed smiling automatically this morning. Ramping up my faith that 'all of this practice stuff' will result in permanent shifts in the experiencing of this reality. others are doings it, and so will i. Noticed the tendancy to be rushing all the time, and deliberately slowed it down. (things like drying myself after a shower, or walking in the house)

smiling now.


1 May 2012 01:21
End of day. Smile stabilised as default. Noticed the tendancy to match other people facial expresions, and how a smile will change the course of the conversation.



1 May 2012 21:26
Smiling becoming automatic still. Noticing little muscles under the nose coming into play and how focusing on how they pinch together over the top lip increases the 'feel' of the smile. It also seems to lift the smile from the mouth to the eyes more.

This has been opening the thinking to regard the body as the more ancient link that reveals so many little secrets that don't occur to the mind.

Mood is stabilised, internal reactions are seen earlier as they interfere with the smile first/
(simultaneously probably) allowing observation of the whole disturbance and flutter feelings of the chest/abodomen.

Last night engaged in some 'who am I?' questioning that ended up in a few smiles. I can't get it going beyond alot of back and forth internal banter, but some interesting things come out of it in how there is no sensible answer to the question. there just is no whay to answer 'who, what, where' without contradicting myself and previous answers. haha

I am a smile? -No there is a smile, it requires no I to be,so, Who am I?


2 May 2012 22:37
Speculative your Honour, I move to strike!!!! hahahaha (in jim carey's voice)

been struggling for the last hour to smile, really gettng achey, but it is probalby the long lunch time walk than any real fatigue. Just 'myself' laugh by replying to some grandiose statement made a moment ago...

Plenty of insight flowing, lots of dhamma, infact there seems to be far more dhamma flowing in this last week than ever before... objection your honour! the council is engaging in hyperbole you honour, i move for a mis-trial!!! hahaha



2 May 2012 22:40
Just made 'myself' laugh I should say...on the subject of making 'myself' laugh- at lunch I was wondering why I talk to others in my head about dhamma subjects, why not cut to the chase and talk to 'myself'? previously such conversations where with 'god', but this one was a cracker. 'we' all agreed to try and keep quiet. It was a riot! haha


2 May 2012 22:41
I think it is Day 7 by the way, hold on let me count back.., yep 7.

happy days.

3 May 2012 21:19
Last night really aching, had a bit of a rest. woke up today, day eight, feeling less sluggish, even though didn't get to bed early. Been maintaining a 'smiling mind' and there is a pleasant feeling tone to the day, though aversion to work is still there.

There is more catching mind movements and moods, greater quiet to the mind.



6 May 2012 19:00
Day 8, 9, 10

Smiling dropping off, but appreciation for this moment rising. Still smiling with duration when something reminds me to smile, and finding opportunity to smile as default. The memory of happy moment, breeds more.

reverencing this moment, it is somewhat scary, but as my christian upbringing told me, the fear of god is the beginning of wisdom,(I might add, not the end)

This is a scary world, we come out kicking and screaming, small, cold and struggling. 'Mental maturiity' certainly feels like it is coming on with me.


6 May 2012 19:52
Actually, that was day 9, 10. For the history books...


Andrew Jones7 May 2012 23:07
day 11
at work.

noting everything that keeps me from smiling (especially in my mind), even 'dhamma thoughts' that are like mini-sermons and cool insights etc. Back to now, back to attention, the sensory field, and energetic happiness. effective.

8 May 2012 20:45
day 12. not good. feeling angry and alone. smiling non-existant, seems like I never started.

9 May 2012 20:39
storm passed. smiling occasionally, noting in and out breaths, internal 'let it go' monologue.

vaguely ok.



9 May 2012 20:43
sitting has not happened last week either. Score late nights semi-working: 10, sitting: 0. Still, could be worse; I could be worried about it.



10 May 2012 00:50
from DhO http://www.dharmaoverground.org/web/guest/discussion/-/message_boards/message/3127074

katy steger:

"My "job" is still to keep the feral mind placed back at the senses, empty of owner/center (and its various story spin-offs); this is equanimous, receptive, specific attention...not unlike the equanimous, theistic reverence of god-in-all-things without trying to name or place them. It is acute listening/observation/sensing, because everything is "worthy" of this.

From this mindfulness has come concentrated states and their related."


Me:
This is an important statement, and very useful. I've used this reverence before, and was reminded last week about it, very powerful way to use christian conditioning to fuel mindfulness.

thanks Katy for another great explanation of 'the way' in this thread.

Smiling again.



10 May 2012 19:04
occasionally smiling. running out of steam, but encouraged in some other ways. having a lot more moments of 'confronting' mindfulness. laying in bed last night, looking at the the room like a child might. that sort of confronting.


10 May 2012 23:54
still drifting, smiling, using peripheral vision to calm the mind. this brings a smile back.


13 May 2012 18:39
well, I think it's over. There isn't enough smiling going on to say that I'm still running this experiment.

Perhaps quitting will let me continue smiling in peace...hahaha



15 May 2012 22:21
started smiling again but for real. Decide to 'commit to' shizen young's systems for a while to see if that will shift me in the right direction. I've been drifting for a long while (many years really) and the fruit is well, not that tasty yet.



15 May 2012 22:23
this practice of shizen's is quite complimentary to this blog post. It fills in the missing supports for a 'smiling mind'.

http://www.shinzen.org/Retreat%20Reading/Focus%20on%20Positive-Summary.pdf

RE: Calmly going forward- Andrew's practice notes
Answer
5/16/12 12:21 PM as a reply to Andrew ..
This is an important statement, and very useful. I've used this reverence before, and was reminded last week about it, very powerful way to use christian conditioning to fuel mindfulness.

thanks Katy for another great explanation of 'the way' in this thread.

Smiling again.

Ah, you are a dad of three I think, and your dedication for practice in every stitch is energizing and inspiring. Thank you.

RE: Calmly going forward- Andrew's practice notes
Answer
5/16/12 8:23 PM as a reply to katy steger,thru11.6.15 with thanks.
Thankyou Katy. the sentiment is mutual.

RE: Calmly going forward- Andrew's practice notes
Answer
5/17/12 2:39 AM as a reply to Andrew ..
What a day!

i won't even go into it, but the psychos are back for another round.

Practice has been, ...hard to describe. i'm meant to be noting, as per my own commitment to Shinzen's instructions, but somehow it feels artificial, I can't make it stick, I seem to have an internal resistance to it. like the attitude that 'i'm doing just fine being aware' , which I think it actually true, but also doubt as well.

Commitment is commitment, I have to test it out properly, so i will push a bit..

It seems sort of babyish to not contemplate deeper than a label, that i'm noticing mind body states as they happen anyway and the label is an effort that disturbs something. But i'm also inclined to suspect that 'something' might be 'me' so I'll push through tonight.

i've been able to smile more again now that I have no commitment to do so. Perhaps what i should do is get up in the morning and make the firm commitment not to practice at all. See if 'i' rebel against that. (just jokes)

RE: Calmly going forward- Andrew's practice notes
Answer
5/18/12 2:29 AM as a reply to Andrew ..
Another intense day, noting has been more regular and inline with shinzens Focus In instructions (noting only Talk, Image, Feel, and All Rest) this is a discipline in itself as my inclination is to want to do more, but I have held back to follow the instructions properly rather than add to /take from them as is my natural inclination.

This has lead to a distinct recognition of patterns and noticing the casual link between the 'mind objects' being noted, and whether it is meant to be stopping chatter or not, it is.

Really need to get some early nights in to get the cushion practice back on track.

RE: Calmly going forward- Andrew's practice notes
Answer
6/1/12 12:14 AM as a reply to Andrew ..
Richard
‘Perhaps the following summary of the way the actualism method works in practice may be of assistance:
1. Activate sincerity so as to make possible a pure intent to bring about peace and harmony sooner rather than later.
2. Set the standard of experiencing, each moment again, as feeling felicitous/ innocuous to whatever degree humanly possible come-what-may.
3. Where felicity/ innocuity is not occurring find out why not.
4. Seeing the silliness at having those felicitous/ innocuous feelings be usurped, by either the negative or positive feelings, for whatever reason that might be automatically restores felicity/ innocuity.
5. Repeated occurrences of the same reason for felicity/ innocuity loss alerts pre-recognition of impending dissipation which enables pre-emption and ensures a more persistent felicity/ innocuity through habituation.
6. Habitual felicity/ innocuity, and its concomitant enjoyment and appreciation, facilitates naïve sensuosity ... a consistent state of wide-eyed wonder, amazement, marvel, and delight.
7. That naiveté, in conjunction with felicitous/ innocuous sensuosity, being the nearest a ‘self’ can come to innocence, allows *the overarching benignity and benevolence* inherent to the infinitude this infinite and eternal and perpetual universe actually is *to operate more and more freely*.
8. With this intrinsic benignity and benevolence, which has nothing to do with ‘me’ and ‘my’ doings, *freely operating* one is the experiencing of what is happening ... and the magical fairy-tale-like paradise, which this verdant and azure earth actually is, is sweetly apparent in all its scintillating brilliance.
9. But refrain from possessing it and making it your own ... or else ‘twill vanish as softly as it appeared.

‘I’ am not alone in this endeavour because ‘I’ can tap into the purity and perfection of the infinitude of this physical universal with a pure intent born out of the PCE that one has during a peak experience. *Pure intent is a palpable life-force; an actually occurring stream of benevolence and benignity that originates in the vast and utter stillness that is the essential character of the universe itself*. Once set in motion, it is no longer a matter of choice: it is an irresistible pull. It is the adventure of a lifetime to embark upon a voyage of exploration and discovery; to not only seek but to find. And once found, it is here for the term of one’s natural life ... it is an irreversible mutation in consciousness. Once launched it is impossible to turn back and resume one’s normal life ... one has to be absolutely sure that this is what one truly wants’


I think I finally get what he is talking about. How many months did that take me? 8? hahaha

Pendulum swinging back.

RE: Calmly going forward- Andrew's practice notes
Answer
6/6/12 8:36 PM as a reply to Andrew ..
Ok, so I've spent a week shedding beliefs, including beliefs about aft related matters, and i have to say that I'm pleased with the results.

NOT mixing HAIETMOBA with concepts of sati/buddhism has proven effective, my understanding of the whole shebang has improved, and i can clearly differentiate between 'actualism' and just asking a really good question and following some advice on how to effectively ask it. the answers are already there in the memory of a peak pre-symbolic experience as to what is and isn't 'free'.

Asking the question and (somewhat ironically) getting back to breaking down the social/animal/plain ol' identity stuff is far easier when there is no preconceived 'what it should feel like' going on. it is all ordinary stuff the narratives i spin never really take into account. so now i am. lets see where this goes...

it is just a great question, that for me is sticking well- noting just doesn't stick for me, for whatever reason. It isn't about changing lifestyle either I' realising, but more about 'unpacking' all the roles i am identified with, and at this stage, simply acknowledging them/ observing what feelings are there etc.

I think previously i have had elevated expectations as to what 'breaking down the social identity' meant and did not grasp that is is a purely internal operation, on the outside nothing changes except i come across to others less demanding and glum.

i've even come to appreciate my boring job as an opportunity to observe 'why?' about the experience rather than dreaming about avoiding it.

one challenge arising now is to not identify with being on any side of the perceived fence that has grown around these issues, and continue with each moment for what it is and has always been; the only moment in which I am alive.


i have also come back to my smiling practice, this time bringing in the eyes first.

Duchenne smiling (from wikipedia)
Although many different types of smiles have been identified and studied, researchers (e.g. Freitas-Magalhães) have devoted particular attention to an anatomical distinction first recognized by French physician Guillaume Duchenne. While conducting research on the physiology of facial expressions in the mid-19th century, Duchenne identified two distinct types of smiles. A Duchenne smile involves contraction of both the zygomatic major muscle (which raises the corners of the mouth) and the orbicularis oculi muscle (which raises the cheeks and forms crow's feet around the eyes). A non-Duchenne smile involves only the zygomatic major muscle. “Research with adults initially indicated that joy was indexed by generic smiling, any smiling involving the raising of the lip corners by the zygomatic major…. More recent research suggests that smiling in which the muscle around the eye contracts, raising the cheeks high (Duchenne smiling), is uniquely associated with positive emotion.”[14]


highlighted bit works well in reverse. i.e. positive emotion can be generated through putting on the smile.I've been choosing to smile when asking HAIETMOBA to encourage a inquisitive , open mind and remind myself of the general attitude being advised by the aft.

one thing i have noticed in my reluctance to acknowledge the appeal of aft advised practices is the strong 'teacher/leader' identity i hold for myself. it shits me not to have thought this stuff up myself seeing as i can relate to it and it has worked for me before (10 years ago reading Neale Donald Walsh while leaving Christianity- was marked with pre-symbolic episodes and breaking down identity, including lucid dreams of being eaten alive, and ..anyway you get the picture).

It is simply humbling to take advice. oh, and speaking of advice, i've started journalling again privately as per Jon T's directive (!)

yo

Question on Intensity
Answer
6/7/12 10:09 PM as a reply to Andrew ..
This sounds to me like a silly question, mainly cause I have a hard time asking real questions, (i'm generally too busy thinking i know what is going on), but i'll ask anyway;( this is really for those who have experienced sustained episodes or permanent pre-symbolic experience.)

Intensity. How much and how?

I think I know the answer (i would -roll eyes) but I would like to hear others thoughts on this. I'm getting the felicitous investigation of social identity, committing 'myself' (i swore I wouldn't start on the scare-marks, doh) completely to the deconstruction and elimination of the 'thinking/feeling being' manifest as 'me' (here we go..) , that bit is clear enough, but I'm trying to extract myself form the buddhist malaise I find myself in of 'relaxed and calm', is there more to it that just seeing the identification?

I know i've previously gone wrong over this point, expecting some sort of gut wrenching catharisis, and i've swung the other way towards 'calm', i'm currently looking at using humour and being jovial as possible to 'grease the wheels' which is the aft advised attitude, which is great.

i don't want to miss the bus here, as i'm trying to start again with a fresh slate, more naivete one might say...not mixing and matching so much.

goal number one being a fresh pce to measure from.

(remembering I am pre-anything save a few scattered awakening experiences (including some jhanic/pce fleeting things), no baseline shifts beyond becoming older and 'wiser'- more the former, the later being completely self assessed and slightly biased ;-) )

RE: Question on Intensity
Answer
6/8/12 12:10 AM as a reply to Andrew ..
I tried something different during my lunchtime walk, and that was to talk out loud (both question, and any answer) also, made a few commitments;

if picking up a few things like saying 'in toto' etc in anyway bothers me, why? is it really worth not being free to appear in ones own mind as independent? I committed not to worry about what it takes verbally to be free.

i committed to not being an actualist in keeping with what actualism is. it is a conversation about a particular experience of life being shared by others for my benefit, whatever idiosyncratic and/or inaccurate things are being transmitted, it should not stop me from becoming free. i am not perfect now, what do i have to loose?

to let go of the mess of synthesised buddhist/actualist/whateverist crap that has become a bastion of identity.

...and a few others I can't remember (some commitments they were then hey?!)

by speaking out loud it really cut through the sense of confusion that had built up this morning.

i do know this process can radically change things, it started 12 years ago in another context; the process of breaking down the identity while being connected to the senses is effective, I just need to stop thinking I'm responsible for anyone elses freedom, or even trying keeping it simple for others sake. It is already not simple. the horse has bolted on that one and the gate closed, probably before I was born in truth.

haietmoba?

determined.

RE: Question on Intensity
Answer
6/7/12 11:58 PM as a reply to Andrew ..
From wikipedia http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cognitive_dissonance (bottom of page)

Cognitive dissonance in the brain


There is evidence suggesting that the more the anterior cingulate cortex signals conflict, the more dissonance a person experiences and the more their attitudes may change.
Using fMRI, Van Veen and colleagues investigated the neural basis of cognitive dissonance in a modified version of the classic induced compliance paradigm. While in the scanner, participants "argued" that the uncomfortable MRI environment was nevertheless a pleasant experience. The researchers replicated the basic induced compliance findings; participants in an experimental group enjoyed the scanner more than participants in a control group who simply were paid to make their argument. Importantly, responding counter-attitudinally activated the dorsal anterior cingulate cortex and the anterior insular cortex; furthermore, the degree to which these regions were activated predicted individual participants' degree of attitude change. Van Veen and colleagues argue that these findings support the original dissonance theory by Festinger, and support the "conflict theory" of anterior cingulate functioning.[48]
Using the free choice paradigm, Sharot and colleagues have shown that after making a choice, activity in the striatum changes to reflect the new evaluation of the choice object, increasing if the object was chosen and decreasing if it was rejected.[49] Follow-up studies have largely confirmed these results.[45][50]


I think this is what happened at lunch, speaking out loud and 'arguing' a case for freedom increased the enjoyment of working towards that freedom.

RE: Question on Intensity
Answer
6/11/12 8:26 AM as a reply to Andrew ..
whenever I'm doing well, I have a resistance to sharing it! It is like 'I'm all right jack, thanks for the fish'.

There is a resistance to admitting it I think, like 'change, no, change isn't me, especially change for the good!'

Anyhow, pushing through it; I am doing well!

Continuing to ask HAIETMOBA and looking at the types of identity connections that come up, considering the difference between the current moment and pre-symbolic experience. Using the information/experience of 'talking it up' and saying things like 'I'm really enjoying this whole thing'

Actually, I am really enjoying this whole thing!

I've got my mojo back. Like I'm 10 years younger, but this time I have a clue what is going on!

Breaking down identity and being immersed in this physical (yet so not ordinary!) world.

Based on this week of engaging in a internal conversation with the aft advice, it is best not to mix it with anything else. Treat it like a conversation with a friend over a cup of tea. Just let it flow, each moment considering 'is this closer? is this further way?'

Had a real breakthrough at work today. It accurred to me that in all my 36 years I have never willingly with sincerity (as one might in meditation) pushed through boredom as a practice exercise. (Like I imagine one might have to going through the dukka nanas.) I'm glad I did as it really openned something up. It actually began to hurt by the end of the day to think in old patterns( even though those old patterns were only 1 hour old). Like flicking on the internet to distract myself began to give me a headache! I wanted to push though. I had begun to enjoy it. Infact it came to a point where I realised I was uncomfortable with being free of boredom. the identification was being challenged.

If only I had known that when I was 6 years old. This could have been alot different.

Anyway, in all of this, out of the blue a few days ago, I started to dream of studying medicine. It is actually a natural strong point in my general knowledge (90% human biology barely studying- Im mean you do get to take a working example with you into the tests after all!)

gradually the mystical ideas are dropping away, and I'm seeing the wisdom of the words 'this flesh and blood body only', it isn't scientific materialism, it is that we don't realise how wonderful what we are really is!

RE: Question on Intensity
Answer
6/18/12 2:58 AM as a reply to Andrew ..
self-moderated deletion.

too many threads polluted by 'me', even if it is my own.

RE: Question on Intensity
Answer
6/18/12 11:10 AM as a reply to Andrew ..
Andrew Jones:
self-moderated deletion


That's a great description of the enlightenment process: "self-moderated deletion".

You made two great points in another thread that you also withdrew: I had an answer composed but haven't had a chance to type it up yet...

emoticon

RE: Question on Intensity
Answer
6/18/12 7:59 PM as a reply to Tarver .
I'm tired of making great points Tarver, you could say my monkeys also seem to well educated and unionised, but it ain't helping me none.

indeed "self-moderated deletion" -'my' greatest point yet- delicious irony abounds.

I won't be posting that much anymore, if at all, 'my' time is up and 'i' need to stop 'flip flopping' which includes posting my monkeys memos in cyber space.

I will be reading your discovery's Tarver, they have been useful in the 'deletion' process and have inspired in some part this change, I am yet to received Dewarts book yet - that should give those monkeys some introspective pause...'oh shit, we are nothing but assertive communication gone viral!, down typewriters boys, this calls for a strike! we will show him'

good... show me.

RE: Question on Intensity
Answer
6/19/12 9:19 AM as a reply to Andrew ..
what do you think is the most important aspect in getting enlightened?

RE: Question on Intensity
Answer
6/19/12 7:26 PM as a reply to Jon T.
right now, commitment. my 'choose your own adventure' method, vaguely buddhist, vaguely actualist, was only vaguely working...so i'm 100% onboard the 'actualist' train until i have gone as far as it goes. AEN thinks that co-relates to stage 5 on the 'Thusness Scale', and that is good enough for me. though to answer in a more thoughtful manner, it would have to be having the right friends to point out the blind spots. which is what all my pragmatic bros and sisters have done are doing, even though i can be a prickly customer sometimes. i think buddha said something like 'friends on the path are 100% of the path' or word to that effect. (isn't that how all the suttas start 'i heard it said..'!) anyway, yeah, thanks for your encouragement Jon, I'll be around.

RE: Question on Intensity
Answer
6/19/12 9:53 PM as a reply to Andrew ..
Andrew Jones:
right now, commitment. my 'choose your own adventure' method, vaguely buddhist, vaguely actualist, was only vaguely working...so i'm 100% onboard the 'actualist' train until i have gone as far as it goes. AEN thinks that co-relates to stage 5 on the 'Thusness Scale', and that is good enough for me. though to answer in a more thoughtful manner, it would have to be having the right friends to point out the blind spots. which is what all my pragmatic bros and sisters have done are doing, even though i can be a prickly customer sometimes. i think buddha said something like 'friends on the path are 100% of the path' or word to that effect. (isn't that how all the suttas start 'i heard it said..'!) anyway, yeah, thanks for your encouragement Jon, I'll be around.


what is stage 5 of the thusness scale? is there a link of the various stages?

RE: Question on Intensity
Answer
6/20/12 12:05 AM as a reply to Jon T.
Hi Jon, Tommy link to AEN's document here;

http://www.dharmaoverground.org/web/guest/discussion/-/message_boards/message/3218905

i don't know if he is saying is right or whatever, there are distinct differences i think, but when it comes down to it i'm not speaking from a place of authority, so why bother wasting my time (and anyone that reads it) chiming in? that i choose the AFT method over all others is of no consequence until such time i have gone to the last stop - to keep the weird train analogy going. choo choo!

RE: Question on Intensity
Answer
6/20/12 10:02 AM as a reply to Andrew ..
Hi, Jon and Andrew,

If your present idea is to practice the Actualism method alone without mixing, you will be interested in this thread where Tarin clarifies the differences between the model of Thusness/AEN and Actualism.

Keep it up!

RE: Question on Intensity
Answer
6/25/12 12:08 AM as a reply to Felipe C..
Thanks Felipe.

Practice wise, I'm having a hard time with the aft writings again. they just don't make sense! in any one article they contradict themselves freely, i can abide with 'psychic suicide', intellectual suicide is another thing all together.

loving though the basic freedom and principle presented on the aft 'as a whole' namely

1) iconoclastic attitude. don't accept anything as given, check it out relentlessly and put into practice what you find.
2) contemplative, get you mind ticking over properly, don't believe anything.
3) do it all happily, this is what you want, so do it happily.
4) i am this flesh and blood body experiencing itself. removes the fluff of spiritual ideas and flakey assertions. if it real it is already real. or actual as the nomenclature would assert.

I can't get my head around calling feelings 'me' for very long , it works for a moment, but then I can't help but think 'what me'?; it's is a feeling it has never constituted a real 'me' why start thinking that now? So i can say I use the aft method 100%? sound pretty dumb doesn't it. I already knew that the sense of self was a conglomerate of feelings and thoughts, putting them all back together so as to make sense of the article is counter-intellectual. why go back on myself here to a lesser understanding of myself?

but having said that, I am not mixing the basic principles i agree are verifiable/sensible above with anything else. that means HAIETMOBA continues at a natural interval, it makes sense and it a great question. and is focused on those points above.

happy and harmless continues, it makes sense and is a great summary of what I want as an ongoing outcome of practice.

but, social identity stuff is not clear, the writings on the aft fall down badly here. the science is sketchy and the method unclear. 'finding out what is keeping me unhappy right now' is far more about 'insight' than it is about identity, seeing clearly the feeling called 'fear' for example is a vibration caused by the repetition of the startle response reverberating non-consciously is an 'insight.' it has application at the level of 'society' and is perpetuated by society, but it does not arise from society. so it is not social identity, it is an insight into the workings of this instance of homo sapiens, it does not arise out of some 'animal self' and is not related to any self, as no self can be found. I can only stick with the facts here. I cannot start accepting sketchy science and ancient analogies of 'self' as being legitimated practice. in the words of Ciaran (RT), "there is no self, just f**king look!"

there is a startle response. there is a repetition of that response that stabilizes as a base level experience labeled 'fear' held in place by non-conscious thought structures instilled by birth and social conditioning, but is is not 'self', it is happening in this biological unit, but any idea of it being 'me' is just plain silly. it is simply what is happening.

i guess my basic metal objection is this; i have no 'spiritual attainment', so all the references to it don't apply. despite the afts bombastic anti-spiritual stance, it takes a lot of my imagination to conjure up what these attainments are like so i can agree, 'yeah, that enlightenment stuff was such a drag, pheew, glad i free of that' roll eyes. (don't get me started on his claim of parinirvāṇa; how is that 180 from anything talked about here?)

it seems to me that with the renegade attittude richard and his friends bring to the game, one must also ruthlessly take what you want from the aft in the same way that it has taken from bhante g or krishnamurti, Leroux, most important of those things is the 'beholden to no one' and the 'autonomous and free' submitting to the 'method' is all but impossible as that is the method; i.e. complete independence of thought to the point of realising 'you are indeed alive'.

in the absence of a pure consciousness experience, the aft site has no 'glue'. it's like some sort of 'in joke'. the first page makes some sort of practice sense, then it descends into one man's opinion on everything presented. I tried for the whole of last week to try and gain the practicals of what it means in terms of living a conventional lifestyle raising children, i.e. what advice is there? none.

none. so again, I'm left to make it up as i go. which is fine, and as it should be, but christ alive if that doesn't make it yet another instance of a 'one size fits all' as long as you are the right size. my intial reaction of 'anyone can feel actually free on a house boat with enough pot and lsd' still stands. yes it is useful, no, it is not enough.

I'm otherwise getting plenty of iconoclastic energy from Dewarts Evolution and Consciousness which Tarver has been expounding, it dovetails nicely with 'apperception'.

spent sunday afternoon at the mall with the kids filled with wonder at having the fact of 'consciousness presented to itself' is plainly obvious if you just look for it, though it is slippery to stabilize the 'wonder'.

hmm. mojo is back. and yes, as far as i can tell, this is 100% af practice.

RE: Question on Intensity
Answer
6/25/12 12:38 AM as a reply to Andrew ..
I have a letter from Dewart from 1991 in which he introduces his material to a class, where he advocates beginning at the beginning and re-examining a long list of standing assumptions about the study of religion. He concludes:

Dewart:
...E&C is uncompromisingly iconoclastic. You have been warned.

...and if you want a book that comes down hard in favour of autonomy, you are in luck: just look at the last page of the text proper on p. 368!

I am looking forward to your reaction when you realize that asking HAIETMOBA is an act of speech, and the implications of that.

RE: Question on Intensity
Answer
6/25/12 1:01 AM as a reply to Tarver .
don't wait, you only had to say 'speech creates consciousness' for that to stand out like a cop at a bikie convention. I've been releasing myself from the 'spiritual idea' of mental silence, it is the content of thought, not its presence, that either creates insight, or builds further 'existential pain'.

though the monkeys are having a field day. yesterday they where writing a thesis on the origin of the greek word 'πνεῦμα' in relation to the experience of 'consciousness present to itself' ; when focusing on the ability to do this 'consciousness thing', it is as if the air is alive. ( pneuma being koine greek for 'spirit, and air' ) subject>air>object easily degrades into imagination of 'spirit' missing what is actually going on, subject>(awareness of subject&object in space)>object. easy mistake (!) haha

or it really is spirit...but that is no where near as much fun.

RE: Question on Intensity
Answer
6/25/12 1:21 AM as a reply to Andrew ..
I can't get my head around calling feelings 'me' for very long , it works for a moment, but then I can't help but think 'what me'?; it's is a feeling it has never constituted a real 'me' why start thinking that now? So i can say I use the aft method 100%? sound pretty dumb doesn't it. I already knew that the sense of self was a conglomerate of feelings and thoughts, putting them all back together so as to make sense of the article is counter-intellectual. why go back on myself here to a lesser understanding of myself?


Who wrote those words? Was it you or your acquired Buddhist beliefs or both? Do you remember how that 'I' felt before encountering Buddhism? Try to juxtapose those times with this one when you are practicing Actualism, without over-intellectualize.

Perhaps, it's precisely the over-intellectualization that is distracting you from the fact that 'you' are 'your' feelings and 'your' feelings are 'you'.

Before you said...

3) do it all happily, this is what you want, so do it happily.


And from Richard

Given that it is, plainly and simply, always ‘my’ choice as to how ‘I’ experience this moment...
[...]
(Bear in mind that, at root, ‘I’ am ‘my’ feelings and ‘my’ feelings are ‘me’ and it will all become clear).


How can you take the decision to make 'yourself' happy and then feel happy, if 'you' are not 'your' feelings and 'your' feelings are not 'you'?

RE: Question on Intensity
Answer
6/25/12 1:35 AM as a reply to Felipe C..
hi felipe, no it isn't a purely intellectual thing, it is semi-intellectual, in that while i was into direct pointing it stands out plainly that none of 'it' (feelings, thoughts) constitutes the whole. putting it in scare quotes changes nothing for me. It is simply going backwards in my understanding. it is as if a sort of 'new age persona' is required one wrapped up in spirits and selfs, that i believe in a self and then to like you said, juxtapose it with what the aft is saying. that is far too abstract for me and takes me too long to maintain. it does work briefly, but i question what it is working towards. (i can make it stick in my mind for a few minutes - but then it's gone)

you've seen me argue a few points on the yahoo lists recently, I do 'get' it, but then unfortunately once you have seen something previously (there is no self you can find) it messes with the mind to then use the very same word as a practice point. richard acknowledges this when he says 'my demise was as illusionary as my existence'. now i realise that i have no deep abiding change of experience over the whole thing, but it is like talking about santa claus with a straight face for me. it just doesn't exist as a 'self'. there is only so much space in my cognition to be reprocessing what is meant by this and that word, when it comes down to it, I have what i need to dedicate myself 100% to it.

intellectualising is of great value if you are paying attention to your experience as the touch stone.

for example, Dewart proposes that assertive communication is the basis of the later rise of the type of speech that gives rise to consciousness. I can verify that these more 'assertive' post of mine changed physically the vibrations experienced in the chest from a lower frequency i would normal call 'fear' to something smoother and faster which i would call 'confidence' as i become more aware of the change it feeds back into a more 'present' consciousness. which could be call 'felicious' (apt, useful, conducive)
I know that this clarity is 'apperceptive' territory so in this way i have found how to be 'happy' from a standing start and without the memory of 'pce' as a guide.

each to their own. but give it 100% (thanks Nick)

RE: Question on Intensity
Answer
6/25/12 10:43 AM as a reply to Andrew ..
I find it heartening to see you holding your ground against pressure (however well-intentioned -- and I don't doubt for a second that just about everybody around here is thoroughly well-intentioned) from those whose self-definition is centered upon the idea of having transcended self-definition. This may be of supplemental interest to you; I got the link from here. Dewart came on a bit strong against Nixon in the response, in my opinion -- kind of like Nixon was in the wrong place at the wrong time, and catches the heat not only for his own misstep (if it even was) but for decades of others before him -- but in any case there is an explanation of why it is crucial to stick with an empirical basis for understanding anything, especially consciousness. More specifically, if the thing you are trying to explain is an imaginary object, the whole project may be invalid, and if you think that your mind is a reflection of the world then you are trying to explain an imaginary object. I am not sure how much is solved by shifting the burden of the word "real" onto the word "actual", stepping back, and supposing that absent-mindedness disappears.

RE: Question on Intensity
Answer
6/25/12 2:47 PM as a reply to Andrew ..
Hi, Andrew,

First of all, I just want to be clear that I am not trying to "pressure" anyone here.

What I wrote to you is because I grasped the ideas from the AFT better after year of a lot of reading, listening, consideration, and, above all, experiential and personal investigation. As why I wrote it that's because it looked like you wanted to give it the actualist method a try, and then I just wanted to share some experiences/readings with a fellow practitioner.

If it doesn't resonate with you anymore, that's fine. Different strokes for different folks. I'll just add a few more points to your post from before, if you want to consider them.

but, social identity stuff is not clear, the writings on the aft fall down badly here. the science is sketchy and the method unclear. 'finding out what is keeping me unhappy right now' is far more about 'insight' than it is about identity, seeing clearly the feeling called 'fear' for example is a vibration caused by the repetition of the startle response reverberating non-consciously is an 'insight.' it has application at the level of 'society' and is perpetuated by society, but it does not arise from society. so it is not social identity, it is an insight into the workings of this instance of homo sapiens, it does not arise out of some 'animal self' and is not related to any self, as no self can be found. I can only stick with the facts here. I cannot start accepting sketchy science and ancient analogies of 'self' as being legitimated practice. in the words of Ciaran (RT), "there is no self, just f**king look!"


Let's get "social" out of the picture. You have/are an identity. An identity is a series of beliefs. A belief is a thought supported and fixed by a feeling. When a belief gets challenged, the identity gets compromised and that creates suffering. Therefore each emotional resistance or tension is a signal of the identity screaming capriciously.

Are you only interested in how feeling emerges ("vibration caused by the repetition of the startle response reverberating non-consciously") or also in why it starts (a part of the social/instinctive "me" is getting challenged by a questioned belief)? Discovering how and why "you" tick dismantles the beliefs behind, and the identity (or self) gets thinner and thinner when comparing those beliefs with facts (some feelings stop to arise or arise with less and less intensity). It is after seeing that thinning experientially when one understands more deeply that "I" am "my" feelings and "my" feelings are "me", and the prismatic but hollow nature of self. "Prismatic" because "I" am the sum of parts, but hollow because "I" don't have any specific essence or center.

in the absence of a pure consciousness experience, the aft site has no 'glue'. it's like some sort of 'in joke'. the first page makes some sort of practice sense, then it descends into one man's opinion on everything presented. I tried for the whole of last week to try and gain the practicals of what it means in terms of living a conventional lifestyle raising children, i.e. what advice is there? none.

none. so again, I'm left to make it up as i go. which is fine, and as it should be, but christ alive if that doesn't make it yet another instance of a 'one size fits all' as long as you are the right size. my intial reaction of 'anyone can feel actually free on a house boat with enough pot and lsd' still stands. yes it is useful, no, it is not enough.


One of the AF claimants is a single mother with a small child, so no problems there.

But, as I said before, go with what resonates better with you. Good luck in your quest, Andrew emoticon

RE: Question on Intensity
Answer
6/25/12 7:43 PM as a reply to Felipe C..
Thanks fellas, no pressure interpreted, just conversation, and always welcome.

I'll check those links and post what flows from that later, cheers Tarver.

Yes i agree on the main point of there being 'identification' at work, that seems to be the fundamental tennant of buddhism as well, what i'm finding over the last few days (and it really peaked last night into a really lovely light hearted feeling) is that the 'wide and wonderous path' is indeed just that. it is not about focusing in any particular manner (around anyone elses conclusions) apart from the direction of enjoying this moment in a happy and harmless way. this (almost) alone, is the path. the work of breaking down the reasons one may not be enjoying this moment come from the fact one is aimed in that direction. they flow from a 'pure intent' rising from the experience itself. it feels good, it feels free, and lets me be more happy and harmless especially towards my family. (wife, 3 kids, and a rabbit- and yes, the rabbit is white,but no, it has no waist coat or pocket watch- though i am tempted to go there)

it is clear that alot of the speculative science on the aft was useful for them to come out from the belief systems that as you said held in place 'identity'. my 'identity' if that is what we are calling that which gets in the way of happy and harmless, is not the same as richards, peters or vineetos. so while interesting, i find discussions of 'animal selves' etc like reading fairy tales, it takes alot of faith for me to entertain what others have found useful for my self, i have to adopt a mindset, put on hold my take on 'reason', be 'beholden' to even agree on the starting points. the fact is i hold evolution at arms length as i find there is just as much faith involved in it as creationism. -so direct phenomenological investigation is king for me. (there is a vibration, there is a thought, this feels like this, etc etc) i must admit I'm starting to think like a vipassana meditator, 'what is going on in this body right now?' but adding the aim of happy and harmless, i.e. the idea that modification of what i find is allowed if i can find something that works and is both 'happy' and 'harmless'. letting my thoughts flow with this Dewart stuff is doing that.

i'm finding this direct study of the quality of consciousness enjoyable, freeing, and ironically* very insight ladden.

On the subject, i don't see the relationship between thoughts and feelings a linear progression, they are very intertwined and seem to undo at their own leisure as long as i'm maintaining my self in a happy/harmless manner.

I'm having a blast.

thanks for the luck, and likewise for yours too.

*yes, i fail to see the irony either.

RE: Question on Intensity
Answer
6/25/12 8:45 PM as a reply to Andrew ..
I am rambling here a bit- so to sum up;

I'm 100% channelling everything I have in every moment towards enjoying 'this moment of being alive' as is the clear directive of the method. that I have no objection to, I have investigated and am aware so as to let go of 'buddhist' (my interpretation of what that is) way of doing that if they are in the way of happy and harmless, though specifically rejecting them would be silly. which means i don't try and watch thoughts, focus on the senses etc, though these things may happen, but they are not the direct method. if i'm flowing with ideas, let them flow. there is no where i have seen that this is incompatable with the method of 'haietmoba' as long as it is enjoyable and directed towards 'this moment' and whether it is happy and harmless. it is working, and that is what matters and..

ok, i'm still rambling...

RE: Question on Intensity
Answer
6/26/12 9:55 AM as a reply to Andrew ..
i'd like to post a quick response and then drop away. leaving town and won't be able to reply to any queries or responsees.

'i' = feelings: Those feelings are the basis of 'you'. or they are the basis of an idea called 'you'. Whenever they are at work, the ego won't be too far away. The ego is your thoughts and ideas which are 100% (99%,98%,75%, (personally i think it's 100% but the exact ratio doesn't matter)) dependent on those feelings. Everything you think and do is to satisfy those feelings. Even thoughts which are strictly logical are still egotistical because there is an emotional attachment which prompted the logical analysis in the fist place. Any thought which isn't based on feeling is not 'you' but the flesh and blood body. The f&b body is also not 'you'.

SI: make sure to distinguish between the SI and the passions. They are both 'you' but also quite different.

Biology created 'you' to better survive and prosper. The SI made 'you' more complex and acute; created by the society and your learned relationship to it. Now that 'you' understand this, 'you' can choose to sift through the emotions and thoughts and choose the ones that will futher 'your' goals. Perhaps, you goal is happiness. Emotions and thoughts are sticky. They tend to validate themselves. But at any moment you can remember how to regard them. And ofcourse that becomes more natural and second nature with practice.

RE: Question on Intensity
Answer
6/26/12 7:58 PM as a reply to Tarver .
 Tarver:
This may be of supplemental interest to you.


absolutely. that is gold. it sweeps the thinking right out.

reading E&C last night really helps me with this 'self' thing alot. it gives me an understanding with which to go forward that doesn't ask me to believe in 'self' or give it the status of feelings, but rather see that the process of consciousness creates a negative void in response to the positive object which it misinterprets as needing filling. so things like feelings and thoughts, being close to the body and useful to it are conscripted into service to fill the perceived void. As the void was only ever a perception, emptying it is all about seeing what has been 'stuffed' in there. the dissatisfaction arises naturally from trying to fit square pegs into a [non existant] round hole ('created' by the circular nature of consciousness- that makes it a quality of a quality of a function of a biological event!)

'i' then is a negative space being filled in with feelings in every act of conscious perception. I simply need to stop doing it by seeing how 'understanding' works and in each moment of asking 'haietmoba' finding how the exercise of jamming feelings into a non-hole has come about.

work in progress still...

RE: Question on Intensity
Answer
6/26/12 11:01 PM as a reply to Andrew ..
so again, i'm rambling...
let's try again;

simply put "what am i currently experiencing in addition to the object which is not the object itself?"*

*hmm, no that's not quite right; rather- what is currently being experienced in addition to the object, and the experiencing of that object? (what repetition of another unrelated object is being run in the space created by 'experiencing the act of experience')

ok, not simple after all. Damn, i know what you mean Tarver, this stuff doesn't 'nut shell' too easily. but i'm getting a lot of freedom from it, a felicitous feeling, not specifically happy, but rather 'apt, conducive, useful, pleasant'

RE: Question on Intensity
Answer
6/26/12 8:56 PM as a reply to Andrew ..
which of course implies that the end goal is indeed 'pure consciousness' , that is- unfilled with anything else but the objects of experience and the act of experiencing it; apperception.

RE: Question on Intensity
Answer
6/26/12 11:05 PM as a reply to Andrew ..
Andrew Jones:
Damn, i know what you mean Tarver, this stuff doesn't 'nut shell' too easily.

Tell me about it!!!

RE: Question on Intensity
Answer
6/27/12 7:07 AM as a reply to Andrew ..
Andrew Jones:
which of course implies that the end goal is indeed 'pure consciousness' , that is- unfilled with anything else but the objects of experience and the act of experiencing it; apperception.


The "act" of experiencing it?

RE: Question on Intensity
Answer
6/27/12 9:33 AM as a reply to Adam . ..
Hi Adam,
I'm trying to sum up in a nutshell Leslie Dewart's book Evolution & Consciousness. It is a very refreshing understanding actually. One of the ways he describes it as "in every conscious experience the act of experiencing is present to itself" http://www.scribd.com/doc/89119903/Synopsis-of-Evolution-and-Consciousness

i'm only in the first few chapters, but it is opening my eyes. By the way, I read of your recent experience on 'virtual covivium', very inspiring - thanks for sharing.

Practice wise;
Tonight I'm researching 'libido' as I'm looking into how various desires are formed so I can understand specifically what I'm deconstructing. i noticed this afternoon looking at a landrover (4WD) and an aching feeling forming and after some investigation i realised it was part of the whole 'being a man' trip and actually not to dis-similar to to looking at an attractive woman. I was trying to get some insight on what is the key to deconstructing this, to get an edge on this one as it really feels like the 'mother load', shading every moment with longing. there was some resistance to wanting to understand it -specifically, "noooo! not my landrovers, they define me!" at that point I knew I had a problem on my hands...

It actually was interesting to consider it in Dewarts terms, looking at it and thinking 'what about this experience is being dragged up from the instincts/feelings/emotions? why is the 'self void' filled with this feeling? (why am 'i' this feeling!)' even now I can describe it as a bittersweet feeling, and realise that it has a lot of nostaglic feelings, romantic feeling, lonely feelings attached to it, thoughts of my father, open roads...han solo stuff ;-) I need to choose freedom or nostalgia. I choose freedom.

RE: Question on Intensity
Answer
6/27/12 9:41 PM as a reply to Andrew ..
A lot of af practice is related to the existance of a palpable life force called 'pure intent' found mainly in the cavets and clauses of the aft, it is regarded as the starting point or the main contributor of the whole endevour.


If one starts with pure intent then, then the first page of the aft has it back the front;


"The way of becoming actually free is both simple and practical. One starts by dismantling the shadowy social identity* which has been overlaid, from birth onward, on top of the innate self until one is virtually free from all the social mores and psittacisms (those mechanical repetitions of previously received ideas or images, reflecting neither apperception nor autonomous reasoning).
*emphasis mine.

http://actualfreedom.com.au/

this is basically why myself and many others I have variously read about have gone to quite dark places eagerly persuing 'pure consciousness' as basically the aft hides 'in plain sight' the fact it is basically proposing a refined form of the age old formula 'it is not i who lives, but christ that lives in me' / 'he must increase, i must decrease'

I find the idea of "pure intent", "life-devotional", "manifest life-force", and such to be the exact same spiritual talk put down elsewhere on the site. I can understand it, (i was brought up with this type of thinking and spent the last 10 years pursuing it further in the 'new age' -if i am to label it) but I don't see this in anyway is the opposite of spirituality.

happy and harmless (with investigation using haietmoba) must be the starting point and onging method, otherwise one needs to take the words of others as being 'gospel'. again, this is not the overall direction of being 'beholden to no-one'.

So if the real starting point is that one starts by tapping into Pure Intent, if such a thing exists as an experience i can find now, fine, if not then it must come about as part of an investigation free from a priori beliefs,which of course precludes it from being a starting point, making the assertion absurd. that on sub-pages of the aft and conversations this distinction is spelt out, one can only assume that in trying to leave behind 'spirituality' the aft deliberately leaves out its basic tenent until one is thoroughly filled with confidence. this type of mysticism, is exactly where all the religions (so thoroughly maligned by the aft) get there faith based starting point. it is what Ciaran of 'Ruthless Truth' fame called his 'harpoon and lance' technique, basically offend the person thoroughly, breaking through there controlled demeanour and proceed to slice and shred at the 'self'.

in other words, freeing yourself from the aft is the first thing one must do, and continue to do, if one want to test out the method proposed. i posted previously that this took 8 months for me to see, making it again nothing more than 'mushroom theory'.

to quote Dewart;

2
And so, if reason is applied not to observations, but to what imagination may fancy, wish, or blindly guess at, it matters little whether its premisses are supplied by what one takes to be a revelation from an all-knowing source, or by one’s own original inventiveness. In either case, the result is the same. Whether in the uncouth, inelegant language of computer engineers—garbage in, garbage out—or in the picturesque cadences of biblical metaphor, the objection is the same: : you cannot make a philosophical silk purse out of an imaginary sow’s ear.

3
Why must philosophical reason be grounded in empirical observation? Because imaginability is not a reliable indication of what anything is in reality like. And concepts are useful for the purpose of understanding reality only to the extent, always limited, that they assert what we have learned empirically from reality. Therefore, philosophy (and science) are bound by strict procedural rules intended to avoid the substitution of what one imagines for what one observes. This is easily grasped in what pertains, for instance, to the evidence alleged to support a certain conclusion: hardly anyone disagrees with the prohibition against inventing facts and then use in evidence whether for or against any thesis. What is, apparently, less easily grasped is that the very first fact that must not be invented is the explicandum. If the fact or phenomenon for which an explanation is sought is the philosopher’s imaginative invention, the explanation is a fiction: it is a fictitious solution to a fictitious problem. It may be interesting and satisfactory to construct the fiction coherentlty and ingeniously, but to suppose that one’s creative fiction is true strikes me as a form of self-deception.


http://www.kjf.ca/95-C5DEW.htm


Not against it (pure intent) per se, just pointing out that this very important point which otherwise differentiates 'actual freedom' from pathology is not made anywhere near clear enough. exactly how much of the aft am i expected to read before I know what to do? 3 million words, 4 million? till i find every caveat and clause, and 'once I heard it said under the banyan tree..' ? should i number it in chapter and verses?

Really, the aft site is one continual red herring in it's set up and layout. points are not in any methodological order at all. but that seems to be deliberate as pointed out above, if you realised up front that it has at it's backbone a force called 'Pure Intent' one may wonder how this is any different to just about anything else.

If this moment truly is so precious and peace on earth so possible, the aft site does nothing to back that up in how it is presented. how can i take it seriously when it has taken me over 8 months to get a grip on what it is and isn't? claudiu had to fly to australia to get a grip on it, i mean really, is that what it takes? tarin too come to think of it..

If simply leads me to think that what I am doing can be nothing more that to continue to make it up* as I go. there can be no 'actual freedom' for andrew jones, there can only be what ever 'empircal results' happy and harmless (with investigation) brings, and though I am on the same continent as the aft members, there is no way 'i', I ,or this fesh and blood body is going to run around trying to make sense of something that could/should be clearly spelt out.

*this again is 100% actualism as far as I can tell.

Edit: and as far as practice goes the current answer to 'haietmoba' is 'neutral to fine', with only the considerations above providing any clue to how that may indeed improve, unless of course my sincerity has indeed activated 'pure intent' and in my case this is what it looks like...

RE: Question on Intensity
Answer
6/28/12 9:26 PM as a reply to Andrew ..
http://www.dharmaoverground.org/web/guest/discussion/-/message_boards/message/2327414

re-reading my old practice thread opened up what has been really the issue here. nuetral to /pleasant IS the peak experience of my life. there are nothing (of anything other than seconds) to draw from for inspiration on how to increase the felicity of this moment other than to continue to enjoy the mental pleasure of 'joining dots'.

in this old thread was the practice I was doing late last year of drawing pleasure from the act of breathing. re-reading EiS's remarks made me realise i didn't actually understand what he was saying, simply -just learn to spread pleasure through the body while breathing all the time. full stop.

i've been getting to a point that reminds me of what I read vipassana meditators complaining of when they say 'what do I do when there are no sensations?' in my case, what do I do when I feel neutral/pleasant and there is nothing to investigate?

Breath.

RE: Question on Intensity
Answer
6/28/12 10:12 PM as a reply to Andrew ..
Andrew,
For what it's worth I can relate to what you're saying, unfortunately.
What I have found is that I try to hard, which creates tension(physical and mental) which then blocks the pleasantness of the moment. When I'm able to let go, the natural flow of sensations through my awareness is pleasant, often very pleasant. A sense of openness and completeness also arises, yet "I" seem empty or gone all together. The advice to: do nothing, really begins to make sense for me at these times. Allow felicity to arise, by getting the hell out of the way.
No idea if this will be of any help, but it is what I've discovered through my own practice.
Best of Luck.

Metta,

Brian

RE: Question on Intensity
Answer
6/29/12 12:33 AM as a reply to Brian Eleven.
Thanks Brian, I can do with all the help I can get!

Practice Notes from lunch;

(Disclaimer; i realise that I violently reject things just before I have insight into them, so in case you are tired of reading about that, I can only say 'meh, I'm tired of it too')

'pure intent' can only come from the physical world around me (including my body) , it cannot arise from the 'mind' as the mind itself is a by product of human consciousness*, the 'mind' 'i' 'self' are all one and the same. the feelings, despite what I read on the aft, are infact real, and stand in, are literally commandeered into 'selfhood'. this is why insight into feelings releases 'pure intent'- the more insight into how feelings are being held 'absent-mindedly'* insitu** the more 'pure intent' allows happy and harmless to be a real thing versus an imaginary ideal.

At lunch the insights into many of my objections began to fall into place, the chief of which are centred around 'nurture' and protecting my children. I could go into it, but i really should get some work done.


* thanks Leslie Dewart, you are a star.

**personally meaningful double meaning here, insitu is how one pours concrete on a construction site (I'm in the construction industry), and how I always perceived being cut off from my feelings as a teenager, figuratively as if concrete had been poured in my chest.

RE: Question on Intensity
Answer
6/29/12 1:42 AM as a reply to Andrew ..
I know why i'm objecting so strongly to af yet also getting so much insight (and despite myself enjoying this- I've filled my smart phone with notes over the last few weeks-you can be thankful i subject this forum to only the smallest part- 'my' sincere apologies to you all*)

the same things that I completely (and immorally) abused Cirian from ruthless truth about, are the same things my feelings accuse richard of (i cannot trust him); sexual lifestyle objections**. And the irony of that is they both use a similar tactic in delivery of what they want to communicate. Cirian even spelt it out in his 'Harpoon and Lance' article; http://ruthlesstruthdotcom.blogspot.com.au/2010/09/harpoon-and-lance.html

basically, they both willfully seek to offend the 'self' and both use this manipulation to deliver their messages. Both have a history of extreme sexual licence (by their own admission, that is not an 'accusation'), and basically i am the polar opposite of them both.

i basically have to take the attitude that if I was in the desert dying of thirst, would I care who came to help as long as I got some water?

no, i would not.



*scare quotes are fantastic fun when you get the hang of them.

**the footnote to this all is that whatever they have done in real life, I did in my head.

RE: Question on Intensity
Answer
6/29/12 1:13 AM as a reply to Andrew ..
oh, oh, and they both think they have finished the path when they both so obviously have not, as both count it to their own previous cleverness, rather than to 'Pure Intent' -Richard or 'Life living Itself'- Cirian. reminds me of the second commandment:
"thou shalt have no other gods before me..."*


*shit stirring I know, but something about it rings true. When one starts to believe their own bullshit, one is liable to have tied a knot that will not undo. A good dose of Spinoza is sure to cure that though.

RE: Question on Intensity
Answer
6/29/12 1:34 AM as a reply to Andrew ..
Hi, Andrew

Andrew Jones:
basically, they both willfully seek to offend the 'self' and both use this manipulation to deliver their messages. Both have a history of extreme sexual licence (by their own admission, that is not an 'accusation'), and basically i am the polar opposite of them both.


AF or not AF, enlightened or not enlightened, people conserve certain idiosyncratic aspects. One AFer is a single (still caring) mother; another is a dude with a girlfriend and full of work; and one recently said he preferred to be celibate.

Andrew Jones:
i basically have to take the attitude that if I was in the desert dying of thirst, would I care who came to help as long as I got some water?

no, i would not.


This is a great way to look at this thing. It reminded me of this other one by Trent:

it might be worthwhile to really ponder the stream analogy. if you were swimming across a body of water of unknown breadth, and you could not turn back, what would be on your mind? would you be worried about your finances, or your social status, or your relationships? Or would you be concerned with balancing your energy, refining your swimming technique, etc? would you be wondering about how to balance the aims of those two categories, or would you be wholly concerned with swimming for your life?

if you have found the resolve to enter the stream, then it's probably not a bad idea to be somewhat obsessed (very resolved) on reaching the other side. otherwise, you risk floating around forever in the water, or being swept away by the current, or pulled under and chewed up by the rocks on the bottom ('the dark night').


We are full of excuses, distractions, rationalizations, and procrastination. We miss the point of what's important, we lose perspective in the game of priorities, when, thanks to intelligence, we all share a common objective in this life: to be happy. All our actions are oriented towards that aim. We tend to fail because the human condition, identity, self or however you want to call it take propriety of this endeavor and distorts everything with its ignorance and delusions: it takes a noble and sincere intention and makes a confusing mess out of it.

RE: Question on Intensity
Answer
6/29/12 2:06 AM as a reply to Felipe C..
thats the thing Felipe, I'm not objecting in the manner of quitting, this is all me unpacking what i have crammed into 'self' this is the feeling based objections being unpacked, looked into, and admitted.

this practice is one big objection followed by insight into where that came from! It's not just at the start, it's the whole path it would seem.

Additionally, I don't mean offence in anything I'm writing, and I don't imagine either one of those blokes are ever likely to read what I've written, but I'm sure they would know exactly what I'm talking about and laugh.

i continue to ask haietmoba and this is the sort of things that come up.

I do wonder why i post though, I'm most likely giving of the impression of being an internet whinger, which isn't my motivation. i want out of this 'shit way of living' more than ever.

RE: Question on Intensity
Answer
6/29/12 2:09 AM as a reply to Felipe C..
Trent quote-athon!!!!

The disharmony you’ve observed is the human condition, and it has ‘been there’ (naturally) since time immemorial. It is ‘both sides of this coin’ and the stress perceived to be between them as well … after all, ‘I’ am the ‘human condition’ and the ‘human condition’ is ‘me’.

What I once noticed was that when I held no allegiances, there was nothing to defend. With nothing to defend, I grew dispassionate. Without ally or enemy, the need for 'defense' born of fear and 'offense' born of aggression became utterly redundant. I dropped all 'my' armaments and became harmless … and a delicately sweet peace settled all about. Such is the result of a mind which refuses ill-will for any and every reason it can find; which may mean simply rejecting it by principle, or perhaps because of some specific reasoning.

So the notion about whether it ‘shouldn’t be there’ is beside the point, because it is already there. 'I' am both the 'offense' and 'defense', and it is because 'I' have chosen 'sides'. A more relevant question, then, may be: what am I going to do about it? Do 'I' dare care enough about ‘humanity’ to abandon it and all of the various divisions and groups that make it up? Trent

http://www.dharmaoverground.org/web/guest/discussion/-/message_boards/message/1858627

RE: Question on Intensity
Answer
6/29/12 3:29 AM as a reply to Nikolai ..
i think today i have put the last nail in the coffin of objecting specifically about the personalities involved. I started at lunch realising how much I had been lied to as a child and how basically 'I' was a liar in respect to how i assimulate 'truth' as i see it and pass it on. this is why I have this feeling that i should step away from the keyboard and give the internet a miss for a while. i really don't know anymore why I post specifically, who am i informing?

to be honest the first thing that comes up is my hope to be the first (ish) family man I know to get free (in whatever way), I particularly like Trent pointing out 'allegiances', as that is what 'i' have been seeking.

the words don't stop really, and basically for me they feel necessary some how. i remember at the bottom of the Direct Pointing stuff last year thinking 'words got me here, words need to get me out'. I actually hope that most people skip reading my thread, as it is the potential of it being read that motivates me to post, not the reading; it actually is very embarrassing to re-read old practice threads, here and elsewhere, and see all the great advice I never took. I'm going back over alot of it, as there are some real gems in it all.

Anyway, I have the impression that now would be a good time to really dig into this all offline, as this was really the last (and first) BIG objection, i've turned a corner today, but as Trent said in the quote, if they are not friends or enemys then they need no defend, or attack. I thank you all belatedly for putting up with 'me' for whatever that is worth. and also those who have been attacked, though i must say, in balance, i probably spent just as must time defending you (cue: Coin analogy)

cheers

RE: Question on Intensity
Answer
7/4/12 12:38 AM as a reply to Andrew ..
Nothing i say is what it seems. I have realised that 'i' as a felt being 'climbed into my head' sometime before I was 6, (certainly I have no memory of being other that I am now), and because of that my main sources of pleasure have been mental and creative. basically; All of my demands in this and other threads, my objections, my points and psuedo-logic all circle back to me gaining some sort of mental reassurance of my existence. In other words, I just like to hear to the sound of my own thoughts as they are the only 'subtle feelings' i ever had.

the Actual Freedom Trust is actually a very sensible and down to earth method of becoming happy and enjoying ones all too brief life. I haven't gone far, back it does make sense. If it does nothing else, it shouted from the roof tops that such a thing as being 'free from the human condition' was even possible, whether I get there or not is yet to be seen.

i will not edit the posts above, though I am not proud or pleased with many things I say in them. It should stand as yet another example of why one must do what one can while one has the opportunity to be free of ignorance and I highly recommend giving the Actual Freedom Trust an unbiased reading to the best of ones ability, and feel free to question me if that will help as to why I have changed my tune.

Being influenced by online opinions to otherwise object to things one hasn't even comprehended properly is an on going danger of reading material like this thread. and for what it is worth, I apologise to Richard for unfairly creating and adding to controversy and otherwise not giving his writings a fair reading before jumping on passing bandwagons/ and or building new ones which do nothing but cause others to stumble over the wreckage of my own poorly trained intellect as it is enlisted to protect a feeble and embattled 'felt self'. so, yes, sorry Richard, Ross, Stephanie, Trent, Tarin, EiS, josh (Adam), and anyone else who has been the object of my passive and not so passive aggression and or smart-alecness. And anyone who has been influenced by my words to otherwise judge (like I did) the Actual Freedom Trust, I also am sorry for whatever misguidance my thoughtlessness has caused.

Thanks also to all those whose help has helped me to this point to even be able, (yet again- it seems daily), see why i need to get this done.

cheers

Andrew Jones