[ Guest post from Ilona Ciunaite of the Liberation Unleashed forum. The url for this post from the blog MARKED, ETERNAL is listed at page bottom. Enjoy ! ]
How To Wake Up?
Ilona at the Liberation Unleashed forum guides Esther through the Gateless Gate.
Esther: Although I recognize my thoughts are just thoughts, I seem to get lost in them quite easily. It feels like there is ‘something’ keeping me from really seeing…something holding on to the illusion of an I. When I get lost in thought (believing I’m not good enough for example) I can see through that, and they sort of fall apart immediately, but they keep coming. Intellectually (is that a word?) I understand I’m dreaming, but I can’t seem to wake up…
Can somebody help?
Ilona: Dear Esther.
I’ll help you through.
It is not that complicated to see when you know where to look. And through all your life questioning your own existence seemed a non issue. I will help you with your inquiry. All you need to do is trust the process, answer questions with full honesty and get back to me at least once a day. Even if you feel stuck. I’m here to help you with that.
Ok, let’s start from your expectations.
Just make a list of all what you expect Theo’s liberation to be like, what you want it to be and what you think it’s gonna feel like.
Please answer when ready.
Esther: I think you meant Esther’s liberation.. 🙂
What do I expect?
I expect to see through my thoughtstories all the time (and won’t be caught in the negative feelings that follow) instead of seeing through them many short moments..I expect not to be afraid anymore. I expect to feel blown away by this beautiful life once I ‘see it”. I expect I will know for sure, instead of not knowing what I am.
Just came up with another one: I expect to relax. To sleep deep at night (at night is when I notice my alertness, my tenseness most) It’s not that I’m a very tense person, but deep down something is never home, so to speak. Even now my life couldn’t be happier and better.
Ilona: Thank you for answers.
You expect to know what you are. That is a tricky one, hehe. All identification is assumed. There is no real you. There is no you at all. How does this make you feel?
There is no separate being behind word Esther. none absolutely.
As in zero.
If that was true ( which already is and I will help you to see that) what would be lost?
Esther: Reading your words makes me feel suddenly very happy. Like something is coming alive. Makes me feel free and full of energy!
“If that was true ( which already is and I will help you to see that) what would be lost?”
What would be lost…my self-image. My doubts. My reluctance.
Ilona: What would be lost…my self-image. My doubts. My reluctance.
ha, self image is not gonna get lost. the character Esther is gonna keep playing the role and still have likes and dislikes.. no, doubts are also gonna come for a visit. it’s not like that. what happens is that it’s clearly seen that you are not that self image, that doubts are not yours.
so let’s dig deeper.
does a cat or a dog have a character? does an animal have an i? how does an animal run without it?
how about a human animal?
let’s see what comes up.
Esther: Yes. Here I get confused. I still think there is an I that produces doubts.
The character, Ok, that seems to be something else..like an oak is an oak and not a birch. But somehow I believe that doubts or feelings of weakness are coming from an I. They seem to be my ‘own’ doing. When you say ‘doubts are not yours’ something in me doesn’t understand that. (I know its not very logical, but it feels that way)
At the same time, when I try to find where these thoughts come from, I cannot find an I who’s thinking the thoughts. They are just there, out of nowhere. So I sort of feel stuck here. Somehow my worries feel so private, like I am here and life is there, and I should let go of these worries in order to be free. I find it hard to really see that I’m not my worries. It’s like I’m glued to this stupid thought.
And yes, a cat has a character an so do I. Lots of ‘Esther’ things that just come up, not my doing.
Ilona: This is it, you are almost there.
Keep noticing that there is no I that thinks thoughts.
I is a thought.
Can a thought think?
Esther: The I feels like a crowd of thoughts trying to make sense of itself..
No. A thought cannot think. So they are merely just images or words coming up.
I notice that I want to understand what it is, probably to keep control. Which I don’t have.
If I let the why go, thoughts just come up. Amazing. They seem loose things now, not attached to anything.
It seems that without the I-thought nothing is ‘my own’.
Suddenly there’s no coherence, nothing private.
Wauw. What a relief! Like everything opens up..
Also a bit of fear coming up to lose this..to believe in I again.
Ilona: Awesome! You are righ here at the gate!
Now tell me, is there a you to cross?
Is there a gate?
Esther: There is no I to go through a gate.
How can a thought move through a gate?
There is no gate.
There’s just all this happening. I see now that I wanted to get rid of my thoughts. But I can’t get rid of my thoughts just as I can’t get rid of the sound of the dog barking or this table. There’s no need to. The me-thought just glues all these loose thoughts together into a story that even more confirms there’s a me..
I feel a bit ehm..sort of empty. Not finally ‘seeing’ something, but like something fell away, that coherence.
Bit speechless. Wauw. Thanks so much..
I have to leave now, back later this evening,
Ilona: Woo hoo!
I’m gonna ask you some questions, answer honestly as you see it.
Is there a self in any form or shape in reality? Was there ever?
What is this illusion of separate entity, how does it work? When does it start?
Esther: “Is there a self in any form or shape in reality? Was there ever?”
No. Only as a thought. You cannot see this ‘self’. It has no form or shape. It’s nowhere!
Although I must say that I can still feel the habit of assuming this self. Like I could just as easily believe in it again.But at the same time something changed this morning. After an afternoon spent in town and having dinner with friends (not talking about this), the I feeling is still gone. And I’m still the same, acting the same, nothing changed. I also still feel a bit empty, in a good way. Feels a bit like carrying around a big secret that is no secret at all.
Was there ever an I? No, there couldn’t have been. It doesn’t exist, I can see that now.
What is this illusion of separate entity, how does it work? When does it start?
Maybe this illusion starts when we learn to talk (and listen) and people tell us who we are. They tell you you are a girl, or a boy, that you are sweet or lazy, or bad, or whatever. You believe what they tell you, because there is no other way to know yourself. You see others around you and assume you are also someone. A separate person with an identity. An identity made up by words an reactions from other identities. And then you start to feel good or bad about this identity, trying to live up to it or trying to get rid of it. Never questioning your identity in the first place. Never questioning if there is an I to begin with. Just being focussed on the never-ending story of your identity. And it all seems so real!
Well, to me it did.
Ilona: This is great! Yes, there has never been a self nor there will be. Even if doubt visits, that which has been seen, can not be unseen. 🙂 there is this amazing video that you may want to watch, if you haven’t seen it yet, especially the end bit.
So how does it feel to be liberated? What was the last barrier between fantasy and reality? What made you look?
I’m delighted for you, Esther.
Lots of love.
Esther: Dear Ilona,
How does it feel to be liberated?
Last night I woke up several times feeling an overflowing happiness, felt like a lightbulb in bed!
Also a bit cautious, is this it? But that question evaporates as quickly as it comes up.
It’s like feeling really great about something without a cause. Without the feverish quality of being happy about something.
And also there’s a feeling of simplicity, of just being where I am (in this case at the kitchen table), there’s no story running along. Although thoughts come up about people, or things I have to do, but they still feel like loose images, they are not connected. You were right, nothing changes and yet it feels so different.
What was the last barrier between fantasy and reality? What made you look?
What made me look was your remark about me not being my doubts.
I felt I was still clinging to something, but didn’t know exactly how. Suddenly I realized that I ‘owned’
my thoughts, like they were my own doing and I had to stop listening to them…Although I had been reading and hearing about this hundreds of times, I didn’t really get that. So by answering your question, and formulating how it honestly felt for me, this became clear.
Then you asked: I is a thought. Can a thought think?
Of course the answer was no. And then I saw there is no coherence, no reality in thought. And that ‘self’ is nothing but a believe in that coherence. I never saw it like that. I was confused about what was meant with I.
I want to thank you so much for your loving, sharp and direct answers and remarks. They pointed me exactly to where I had to look.Thanks for your time!
Really really happy about it!!!
Ilona: You are very welcome Esther! i’m so happy that i could assist you :))
i have only one question left for you. How would you explain this to somebody (friend) who never heard about this before?
Esther: Hi,Just sinking in this new experience of no self. A bit hard to explain but you probably know what I mean. It’s like
some inner noise fell away and suddenly it’s silent and simple. But it also feels vulnerable in a sense that I have not much to say about it. Just experiencing this for now..which feels so good.
Your question is one I want to answer, but I also feel it’s good to to just experience this for now before I put it into words. Let you know when I’m ready,
Ilona: oh yes, let it sink in. 🙂 please take your time and answer when ready. lots of love.
Esther: Hi Ilona,
After my initial ‘seeing’ that there is no I, and the sudden silence in my head I experienced, I find myself now in a storm of thoughts, sometimes fear coming up…yes, my ‘self’ again, believing in this I construction…Woah, that really depressed me this morning.
Feeling trapped in fantasy, knowing it’s not real. Could you please help out?
Ilona: Dear Esther, yes doubts come back as cleaning up process starts. All conditioning and programming that was connected to the I thought has to be cleaned up. Just like after a storm there is lots of rubble. Mind is seeking to be hooked up with I again, but it’s not there anymore. So the structure, habits of thinking is starting to fall.
Good thing is- all is happening by itself, no matter what you think about it. So trust the process, and examine the old beliefs, check if they can stand the fire of truth.
Doubt? Yes, it’s a friend, welcome it. It’s here to point to areas that haven’t been looked at yet, so follow the doubt to it’s source, show the mind again and again, that there is no one here to doubt. doubt is appearing so resolution can be achieved.
It would be great if you joined unleashed group on fb, are you on Facebook already?
Esther: Thanks for your words. Yes, it feels exactly like that: mind trying to hook up with I again.
Although there’s nothing to hook up with, they still suggest there is one and arouse feelings of fear or whatever old conditioning there is.
OK. thanks. I’ll trust the process and follow the ‘doubts pointers’..
No, I’m not on Facebook yet. But maybe I should. I’ll get into that.
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Many thanks to Ilona Ciunaite for sharing this post.
This dialog and others may be found at this url: