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Consciousness, Awereness, Deep sleep?

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Hello fellow seekers,
Before we start let me explain what I mean by those terms

Consciousness = quality of being where you know that you are, and know what you are at least in a particular world, either be it current dream world or everyday waking world

Awareness = that which is aware of every sensation that can be observed, that witnessing

Deep sleep = dreamless state that takes place between REM states (where the dreams occur)

I don't know how accurate my understanding of those terms is, so feel free to correct me.

So big part of meditation and progress of insight is realizing that everything is not permament, it comes and goes. What has a beginning  will have an end. But what about Awareness? From my point of view everything I know indeed is changing, nothing lasts forever but there is only this Awareness that feels like it is the only constant thing. It feels like it was always there in my known experience the same, whether I was 1 year younger, a kid, or even when I dream to be a completely different person, there is this Witnessing. It makes me feel like it always is, but is it really? What about deep sleep? This is my question, is it just not present in deep sleep or is it that there is nothing to be aware of therefore there is no memory of it? Is there ANYTHING at all that is not temporary, that always was/is/will be?

RE: Consciousness, Awereness, Deep sleep?
Answer
8/5/15 9:14 AM as a reply to Michał G..
What if, as an experiment, you explored the view that rather than being a separate 'thing', 'awareness' was a quality of those very sensations, like 'wetness' is a quality of water. The waves are unique and constantly changing in relation to each other. The 'wetness' is the same; wherever there's a wave there's the same quality of wetness. This experiment has the advantage of being true to the experience of timelessness and purity of awareness without contradicting impermanence.

RE: Consciousness, Awereness, Deep sleep?
Answer
8/5/15 11:54 AM as a reply to Michał G..
Hi Michal,

This is partially addressed in an article we are debating on another thread at the moment 

https://faithfulbuddhist.files.wordpress.com/2013/11/taking-anatman-full-strength.pdf

The author there claims that Dependent Origination (DO) does not leave any room for anything that is permanent or unchanging. DO is a central Buddhist concept but there are other systems that have the concept of souls etc. That article is particularly interesting for pointing out how western buddhism has slipped back in the concept of atman because they are not taking anatman at "full strength"

RE: Consciousness, Awereness, Deep sleep?
Answer
8/6/15 1:49 PM as a reply to Michał G..
Hello Michał,

Michał G.:
But what about Awareness? From my point of view everything I know indeed is changing, nothing lasts forever but there is only this Awareness that feels like it is the only constant thing. It feels like it was always there in my known experience the same, whether I was 1 year younger, a kid, or even when I dream to be a completely different person, there is this Witnessing. It makes me feel like it always is, but is it really? What about deep sleep?


Awareness during deep, 'dreamless' sleep is possible.


Michał G.:
This is my question, is it just not present in deep sleep or is it that there is nothing to be aware of therefore there is no memory of it?


There is 'something' to be aware of, although not much. Some thought process. For example, the intention to keep doing what you were doing with very strong concentration during the day, be it Mahasi-style noting, mathematics, programming. With Mahasi noting there is this distinct feeling of keeping doing noting when there is nothing to be noted except the process of noting itself.

Memory of that having happened is also possible.

RE: Consciousness, Awereness, Deep sleep?
Answer
8/7/15 4:58 AM as a reply to . Jake ..
. Jake .:
What if, as an experiment, you explored the view that rather than being a separate 'thing', 'awareness' was a quality of those very sensations, like 'wetness' is a quality of water. The waves are unique and constantly changing in relation to each other. The 'wetness' is the same; wherever there's a wave there's the same quality of wetness. This experiment has the advantage of being true to the experience of timelessness and purity of awareness without contradicting impermanence.
I tried contemplating on that and it was a difficult idea to play with. You mean as if awareness of sensation comes with that sensation? That's mind blowing

----

neko,
is that your expierence?

RE: Consciousness, Awereness, Deep sleep?
Answer
8/7/15 5:12 AM as a reply to Michał G..
neko, is that your expierence?




Yes, but not exclusively. I know people who can do that too, B. Alan Wallace talks about it extensively in his book on dream yoga. Try this search

https://www.google.co.uk/search?q=site:dharmaoverground.org+dreamless&search_plus_one=form

"Dreaming" about mathematics during the dreamless phase of sleep happens to a lot of people who studied maths or physics at uni. It is perhaps not the same as awareness during dreamless sleep riding the momentum of Mahasi noting, but it comes very very close.

Several sources, traditional and not, claim that only an Arahant can do it, but I call BS on that: I can do it, and I am not enlightened.