Tuesday 24 January 2012

The Trick of Language

When we learn to say our first words, parents are so happy. We learn fast and start to communicate what we want. We learn to say I, mine, me and we understand that these are very important words as using them we get what we want. It's my toy, my mum, I want this, I do that.

Our thoughts appear as words, strings of words, joined into sentences. Words tell a story. The most important story is the one about me.

Because of the way language is constructed, we have labels for objects and we have labels for actions. Every word is a pointer to something, be it practical things or imaginary stuff, but words themselves are only labels. Like house, car, woman, cat, thought, feeling, sun, etc. Nouns are pointing to objects, ideas, something that is solid. There is no movement in solid things, so we learn.

When we express some action through words, there is always an assumed doer of action: I breathe, I walk, I watch TV, I hear a sound, you listen to the music, we are having dinner, a car is passing by. There is always someone/ something there that is doing something. But when we look up close and try to find that doer, it's nowhere to be found, it's only a construct of language, a word I assumed for a real entity/doer.

If language was constructed just from verbs, the world would feel quite different: Breathing, typing, looking around, hearing the music, talking to a friend, walking, eating... All the action could be expressed without a subject and it would still be pointing to the same action. If word I is dropped, nothing changes.

I breathe -- breathing is happening. See, there is no breather I. There is just pure action. And because of language we get confused and assume an identity. Word I becomes the centerpoint of life, one that needs to be protected, defended, and looked after. Great. But it's only a label, that points to nothing that can be perceived by senses.

Ilona is typing this. I am typing this. Typing is happening. It can be expressed through different words, but the action itself does not depend on how it's labelled. Instead of using word Ilona to point to this body, it's agreed to use word I, it's convenient in a conversation with you. But neither Ilona, nor I is doing the typing. Typing is happening effortlessly as next thought comes up.

Life is going on by itself, without a doer, manager, observer, chooser, witness that is somehow outside of what is happening. There is this illusion, that I/ me is here, but it's only words that point to story about I/me, no such thing as me exists.

Language is a tool. Somehow humans became victims of it through assumption of separate entity. This identity I/me only creates misery and unnecessary suffering. It's a cosmic joke. Humans not only learned to speak but also learned to never question this identity, as everyone around are trapped in the same soft prison of words.

What is here in between the thoughts? Just this- raw sensations, feelings, perception. Being- as in verb. And thoughts tell a story about this, where I is the main character and you are separate from me.

Try to find that I that is making stuff happen. The funny side is that's it's not even hidden, it's in plain sight and with a little bit of curious investigation, it's clear, that me lives in imaginary wold, only in stories about me. When story is taken seriously, all kind of drama spins out. At this point, just remember, whatever story is being told, it's fiction. Life goes on regardless what words are used by the mind to describe it.

Related Article- Labels

Friday 20 January 2012

Nona Sees It and Can not Stop Laughing

Hi Nona, what brings you here?

I want to experience no self.
Outside of my dreams, I mean.

ok, what do you imagine it is like, what do you expect?

I imagine it is effortless, similar to the way I experience myself in my dreams. Flowing effortlessly.

it already is. effortless. only one thing is in a way- belief that it is not.

Yes. I understand that. And I notice that understanding is not the same as living it.

yes, exactly. so is there a you living it?

Yes, it appears so. And I can't be absolutely sure about that.

aha, so what it that word 'me' pointing to?

A set of beliefs, memories, and a desire for some control over what is experienced. I can question the beliefs and memories, but the desire for control seems implacable.

no, no, it points to other thoughs about me. check it.

yes. They are all thoughts about me.

right, so what is that 'me', if not just a thought?

Me is only a belief. And it is a very persistent one. It is my most frequent thought.

it's not a belief, it's just a word, that is assumed for an entity.
tell me, where do thoughts come from ?

I don't know. They just appear.

take a good look, as well tell me can you control thoughts at all.

I can't find where thoughts come from. And I am not in control of them.

so would you say that thought me is appearing by itself?

I don't know where it comes from. It feels "located" in Nona. Yet I've watched Nona stop being a familiar body and become a ship or a car, exactly as identified as the body I feel I currently inhabit.

it's simpler than that, really. tell me what is Nona?

Energy. A collection of electrons.

no it's not. it's a character in a story. can you see nona as a main character?
like batman. a fictional story ABOUT nona.

Yes, I can.

Yes. It's all story. Apparently "my" story.

is there an actor playing a role of Nona?


aha, so how does a character operate? is there anything that controls the story?

What a great question! I'm looking...

i'll give yo a clue, look at nona as a organic computer that responds to environment.

Are you saying that environment creates the story of nona?

environment greatly influences the story, and shapes it, yes, but is there anything that creates it from outside?
like a manager, that chooses what happens in story, that controls events?

I feel like I almost understand something, but am so dense!
The story of nona appears to be a joint creation between me, my parental units, family, schoolmates... it seems to be added to or impacted by all the other stories around this one.
 The only one choosing what happens in the story of nona is Nona.

same like batman is choosing what he is gonna do next in the story of batman.
choice is also part of story.
and the story is fictional.
take a look at nona from the point of view from a friend, family member, somebody you never met, a colegue, what can you see?

I see another story of nona. Nona as a character in my (the friend's) story.

is it the same story or just story about the same character?

All our stories are fictional. That's what stories are.

so if i tell you, there is no you at all, in real life, none as in zero, what comes up right now?

Neither. My story and your story will be different. Thus the character we call nona will appear different to each of us.
I understand that is True. And I notice I don't then let go of the idea that there is a me.
I "get" it; but I don't Live it.
I ask, then who is typing Nona's part of the conversation?
Is this a conversation Ilona is having with herself?

there is no I to get it. that's the fun part.
notice as it is happening and tell me.

<— feels stupid.

look right at the experience as it is. right now. tell me what is happening.

My story of Ilona is conversing with my story of nona?
Someone is typing. Words are appearing on a screen. That is all.

none of that. what do you see right now in front of your eyes? go in deeper into experience.
how does it happen?

I make it up as I go along.

notice- first reading happens. then thought arise as a responce and fingers start to type.

Nona is experiencing a story of inquiry.

 let's leave nona for a while and see what is behind the story.


what is here now when you stop thinking about it?


good good.. so look at the breath and see if there is a breather. do you do breathing of breathing or is it happening by itself?

Breathing happens by itself.

see how language is made: i breathe. i sleep, i walk, i eat, is there an I that does all that?

No. I am breathed; I am slept; I am walked; it happens and I take credit for it.
I incorporate those activities into my story.
Much like in my dream I incorporate noises.

ok, how about dropping that i completely: breathing happens, walking happens, taking credit happens..

‎"I" is another piece of language.

is there a doer? notice as you type the message, notice that all is happening simultaneously and effortlessly.

Yes, I see that.

is there an i that sees that?

Understanding happens. And yet there is a persistent sense that understanding is located in a self.

that is not a sense, just a thought about it.
self is just a word.

It's all just words. All the parts of my stories are words.

take a look. focus on I am feeling, that open alive receptive be-ing. see if it's personal. see if it needs to be labeled to feel real.

I name my experiences.
No. It's not personal. And the labels are only to have a way to communicate about it. Which may not be necessary either.

observe the mind as laballing machine. look around the room and notice things, see how thoughts label everything automaticaly.


is there anything that does not happen on automatic?


do you exist?

only as a character in a story.

ok, but do you exist in reality? story is fiction.

And yet this character has a sense of self. Labels about a self.

let's see, does batman exist? does unicorn exist? does tooth fairy exist?

No. Those are also fictions.
if Nona does not exist in reality, where are these experiences she's telling herself?

lets fo back to the sense of self. take a look what is it. is it self or aliveness + label.

aliveness + label

now look at experience. is there an experiencer?

and the story of nona is a story of experiences, neatly labelled.

check it, look at experience now really close. what is behind experience?


no, not though. thought comes later. take a look again.


behid sensation, is there anything that sensatioon is happening to?

something believes it is having sensation. and that's a thought. Nona doesn't seem to be getting this.

what is that something?

I don't know.

take a look.


let this settle today. we can talk more tomorrow. focus on experience, on now, notice how thoughts are also part of experience.

Thank you.

you are welcome.
........................................................next day.....................................................
Great belly-laughs!! It has constructed an elaborate story of a guide at a gate in order to explain no-self to the character nona. As if nona existed. Direct experience of feet on tile floor; direct experience of hands in water; reports (thoughts) about washing dishes. No nona needed.
How amazing to go from a belief that nona is a character in a story to observing the story being built While it LOOKs. Hilarious! The story gets a chapter about a search for a nona, complete with explanations and reports concerning its makeup and status. The story has nona running around looking for no-self and not finding it. Hahahahaha!!

welcome home, honey :)

Still laughing!!!

hahahahahaha. Laughing with you! ha ha ha! This is really hilarious to search all life to find this, yes :)
Let me give you something more to laugh here, since you are in this laughing mode: http://completehumanity.blogspot.com/2011/07/ive-been-meditating-my-ass-off-for-25.html
Complete Humanity: I've been meditating my ass off for 25 years. For THIS?!? It's gotta be a joke!.
All of this life is for the sake of seeking self.... but there is no self..out...
while Ilona sleeping...:)

The Simplicity of it. Yes. Hahahahaha!!!!!
 Ilona said LOOK; not THINK. D'oh! Hahahahaha! LOOKing is amazing. No nona in LOOKing.

Yey, honey. Much love ♥

‎Ilona, THANK you so much!!!!

You are very welcome! Live free, love.
how is life feeling today ?

Fantastic! Nothing has changed; everything appears different.
Still Laughing!!!!!!!! :-D

It's a cosmic joke! :)))

can't believe it's only day two! I noticed the physical sensations of anger coming up today; but there was no self for it to catch on to and the feelings disappeared. Not at all bizness as usual for this one!!

Hi Nona, congrats on discovering the grand illusion. Happy looking! ;-)

Yay, Nona!

Day three. Awaiting developments. Noticing effortlessness where 'i' used to snag on thoughts and emotions as they arose. Thoughts and feelings still arise; no assistance or interference from nona is needed. Not feeling disconnected; on the contrary, feeling quite connected. Now what?

Still laughing?

Oh yes!!!! It's still so hilarious!!! Looking and Laughing here!!!

Lisa Hamilton Well big fat happy YAY!! to that!!

Tuesday 10 January 2012

Liberating Is a Good Word For It ~Catherine

Catherine: Hi Ilona

Thank you for your offer of helping me through. I feel ready to look for myself now to see through the illusion. As I mentioned already I have been trying to look for myself by reading your blog and a lot of the other posts but I feel I need the help directly at this point.
With thanks Catherine

Ilona: Welcome here, Catherine. You said you have been answering questions by yourself.
Let's see where exactly you are at the moment.

If you let this thought in- there is no you at all as a separate being that drives the body, what comes up? Feelings, thoughts?

Catherine: when I let in the thought "there is no me at all as a separate being" I notice feelings of fear, like a stunned or startled feeling right now, very few thoughts but my body feels shaky. I’m just breathing into those feelings.

As I sit with this , there are thoughts, " I’m never going to get it" , but the frozen feeling is relaxing now. The thoughts coming up are " I am trying too hard", I just want to be able to answer honestly and not give what looks like the right answer.

I feel like I have had glimpses during the last two weeks where I could see that there is no me separate from whatever is happening in the moment.
When I ask is there a me typing it feels like there is a me doing this action. It seems easier to see there is no me breathing just breathing happening or there is no me hearing just hearing happening but when it comes to an action like moving my hand or taking a drink or walking across the room it feels like there is a me responding to a thought to do something, i.e thought comes go down and get a drink and there is a me that follows.

Ilona: Ok, Catherine. Let's look at the fear.
Let it be there and observe the fear itself as a mechanism. Look how it brings up a sensation in the body, how it makes the body shake. Let it be ok, observe how fear does its job.
What is its job?

Catherine: yes, looking at the fear, it brings up lots of sensations in the body...., it has brought up shaking, ice cold sensations and stomach churning.
I’m letting it be ok.
Observe how fear does it's job.

It's job is to stop me looking, it's a defence mechanism to keep the me in place. It is tied in with thoughts of "I'm a phony" and sensation of my mind going blank and thoughts of it's impossible to answer the question and then It's the thought that I want to be a me that looks good and is preserved...
It feels lighter to see that.

Ilona: Ok, great work. Still let the fear be here. It is doing its job as protector. Thank it for that. Bow to it. It has been taking care of you all your life. It's not an enemy, it's not to be feared, it's a guard.

What is it protecting from being found out? Can you look behind the fear and tell me if anything needs to be protected.

Catherine: what is the fear protecting from being found out?

When I sit with this I get the thought ," nothingness, just this thought coming " I am nothing"

Can I look behind the fear and tell you if anything needs to be protected?

When I do this I can’t find anything that needs to be protected, the feeling is there's nothing there.

Is the fear guarding me from seeing there is nothing there?

I have no feelings or sensations of fear now. I addressed fear directly and thanked it and it felt benign. It feels like there is emptiness or space behind it and my body feels relaxed. It’s just a thought that comes in that seems to have a lot of power and it’s one that I seem to resist instead of just allow to pass through. wow, I am seeing fear is just a thought. Thank you.

Ilona: you are doing so well :)
yes, fear is there to guard you from seeing the nothingness.. And it does not need to be protected, as there is nothing there. Void. Emptiness. Stillness....

And here there is THIS, right now, this moment.
Can you look now at the thought, that there is no you as a separate being that is managing it's own life, all is life. Can you find a line of separation? Notice, that it is life life-ing, as in verb. Thoughts pop up, scratch follows itch, breathing, reacting to environment is happening, but is there something that all is happening to? Is there an experiencer of experience that is separate from experiencing?


Catherine: Is there an experiencer of experience that is separate from experience?

OK, hearing the buzz of the laptop is happening now, there is the experience of hearing sound but when I look for a hearer that is separate from the experience of hearing I can't find one.....
There's tingling sensation in my feet, there is the experience of feeling the tingling but when I look for a tingler that is separate from the experience I can't find one, the tingler and the tingling are one...wow....There is no experiencer that is separate from the experience of tingling or no hearer that is separate from the experience of hearing

there is just the tinging happening and the hearing happening..
So in answer, no there is no experiencer of experience that is separate from the seeing, hearing and feeling sensations, there is just the experience of seeing the objects in the room, photos , cards, lamp but no seer
Without experiencing experiences there is just a feeling of spaciousness.

Ilona: wow.
All right then add the layer of thoughts, notice that thoughts about experience are also part of experience, is there a thinker of thoughts?

Catherine: Thoughts about experiences are also part of experiences, is there a thinker of thoughts?

Thoughts seem to come by themselves but it feels as if some thoughts lead to me taking actions or making future decisions and those ones seem personal, like there is a me making decisions to do something for example the thought comes go into a quiet room to sit with this question and then I act on it. I feel stuck on this as I can watch the thoughts happening but don't know if they are they unrelated to any action that might seem to follow?

Ilona: Oh no, they are related to action. Like labels. Look at mind as labelling machine, note things as you look around the room. Mind also labels sensations and feelings.

Now raise your left hand above your head.
Do it.

How did that happen?
What was that made the choice to do it?

Is it possible that choose was already made, thought came in later?
Watch closely relation between what is happening and how thoughts label it.

Catherine: Look at mind as labelling machine, note things as you look around the room

Yes I note objects the mind is labelling, cup ,photo frame, glasses case, laptop , fingers etc,
Mind labels sensations and feelings, yes feel a breeze on my legs, feel relieved...

I raised my left hand over my head.....
Yes I notice that my mind is labelling the action that is happening like labelling the fingers typing on the keyboard
How did the action happen? I don't know how it happened but if there is no separate entity here then there was no choice made, it just happened and the thoughts labelled it as me lifting my arm. So then it follows actions are just happening by themselves as thoughts are happening by themselves.

Ilona: Great answer, we are moving forwards:)

What drives human organism?
What drives other animal organisms, like a car or dog?
What makes decisions?

Catherine: Hi Ilona

Thank you for all your help with this,
I have been sitting with these questions for quite a while.....

Biological impulses i.e. need for food, drink, sleep, exercise etc. drive the human organism and the particular environment plays a part in behaviours e.g family or culture influences and preferences come into it too

Other animals are driven by biological instincts and impulses like survival needs in relation to the environment they are in and they can adapt to their surroundings and the characteristic's of the type of animal they are i.e. cats have different types of characteristic's to dogs

A car is mechanical, it does it’s own thing by the mechanic's of how it's built,

what makes decisions?
Like the question how did the arm get raised over my head, different experiences happen during the day, like getting up, eating breakfast, going to work or school or staying at home and it feels like there is a decision maker making different decisions about all of that but the "I" thought that labels everything that happens has been accepted as real and not questioned. So there is not somebody or something making decisions but just that life is happening by itself.

Ilona: Next... You are doing so great! Almost there.
Can you examine the character Catherine, look at the story, can you see how beautiful she is?
Can you tell me how this character looks like from point of view of different people- partner, family, colleague, stranger etc. Can you tell if there is an actor 'me' that plays character? How about the script?

Just examine the story itself, how it works, not focusing on content.

Catherine: Examining the character Catherine, she looks like she has many character traits, things she likes, preferences, habits, interests, and this can look a bit different from different peoples point of view i.e. a boss at work might see a different character from her husband at home or her best friend or her child might see her differently than her mother would or the people she meets through her work would view her differently than her sister. Everybody seeing differently depending on the role she is in with them. The particular role shapes what she looks like from the different people's viewpoint. So Catherine’s character is playing lots of different roles in the story.... Woman, wife, daughter, mother, friend, colleague, team member, citizen, sister, in -law....and many more and these show the character having many different aspects when she is seen from all these perspectives.

Can I tell if there is an actor ' me' that plays Catherine's character?
The script of the story of Catherine's character is playing out all by itself, there is no "me" doing something and the character traits are shaped by the different roles as she responds to the particular environment she is in, which can be influenced by the role at the time e.g. Whether at work or at home. The mind has given the character multiples of labels which are ever expanding and exhausting! Just as the mind has labelled everything that happens and that there is a "I" doing it, the mind has labelled the character is "me".

What a freeing thought this is, wow from being so identified with the roles.....

Ilona: Yes it's very freeing to see how roles are playing out naturally and story is unfolding effortlessly. All is happening to no one, for no reason, simply life is going on. It's safe to retire from being a general manager of life, hehe.

So tell me, is there a separate driver 'me', that is in charge of life? Was there ever a self?

What is real? ( as in does not disappear if you stop believing in it)

Lots of love!

Catherine: Hi Ilona

retiring from being a general manager of life feels great!

No, there is no separate driver "me" that's in charge of life, no decision maker and no orchestrator, there is no me that is separate from experience
There is no self now and there never was a self, just the "I" thought that was believed, this belief in "me" is the cause of suffering

What is real; the physical body (human organism) that is playing out the character , physical surroundings, objects, and the natural world including plants, birds, animals and what is happening; experiencing experiences, life happening is real

big thanks and love

Ilona: thank you! I see that you are through :))) awesome.
Tell me please, what was that last bit that made you look?
How would you explain this no you thingy to somebody who never heard of it before?

How does it feel to be liberated?

Lots of love!

Catherine: Hi Ilona

Seeing through the fear was a huge help initially and seeing that there is no decision maker,I was stuck on that...feeling that "I" am responsible for what happens but sitting with it for many hours over the past two days, in a quiet room and asking the questions exactly as you asked them, giving it my full attention, I just saw, it became clear, especially by focusing on the relationship between what is happening and thought,{ the thought always claiming "I " am doing something but not being able to find a" me" that is separate from the experience that is happening}

I would explain this no you thingy to someone who has never heard of it as:
the mind is playing a great trick that is believed, that the individual is the author of their life and we have never gone directly looking to find this' you' that is a separate entity that is controlling/directing your life, just accepting this is true; But this 'you' cannot be found if we go directly looking for it because it does not exist, life is just happening by itself.You don,t exist separate from life but as life's experiences. There is no loss experienced on seeing this because the belief in a separate 'you' causes all of the suffering that is experienced.

How does it feel to be liberated; It feels really freeing right now,"I" am not responsible, feels amazing. Now just sit back and allow/accept what is happening, "I" am not in control and never was, that feels awesome and funny
too!!Feeling very light and joyful also. Liberating is a good word for it.

Feeling so grateful for your guidance and this forum
much love xx

Ilona: It was a pleasure to read your words, yes, this is it. It's mind blowing how simple that is and how we never question the existence of 'I' the manager.

Welcome to the ride without a driver :) so much to explore.
Let this sink in a bit, it takes a little time to adjust. Please join the unleashed Facebook group :) its great for support and meeting new friends.

Could you describe the moment of seeing as it happened? What was going on in the mind and in the body? In high detail pls.


Catherine: It was when I was focusing on looking for a 'me' that is separate from experiences. I was tuning into the experience of hearing sounds and the thought in my mind was to try to find a line between me a hearer and hearing. It just hit me, a realisation that just hearing is happening , no me that it is happening to. There was an aliveness in my body like the body springing to attention. It felt good, emotionally. I’ve been feeling energised since then, not sleeping as much..
That was the first glimpse. I have a desire to hang on to that moment because its not continuous. But there is a feeling of spaciousness that is staying.
There's some doubt thoughts coming, so it's really good to go back to that moment.

Thank you for the invitation to the facebook group.

Ilona: this is beautiful. Thank you, you have been great!
Look at the doubt, isn't that just another though passing by effortlessly. No need to believe what they say.

See you at Unleashed.

Lots of love.

Sunday 8 January 2012

How To Wake Up?

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,
much love,

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.