How to get rid of clinging to self

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How to get rid of clinging to self

Postby Red Faced Buddha » Wed Nov 14, 2012 4:29 am

One of the major hindrances to me is my constant clinging to "I."this has caused me some trouble and makes me rather blind in certain doctrines.How can I get rid of my constant clinging to self?
A person once asked me why I would want to stop rebirth. "It sounds pretty cool. Being able to come back. Who wouldn't want to be reborn."
I replied. "Wanting to be reborn is like wanting to stay in a jail cell, when you have the chance to go free and experience the whole wide world. Does a convict, on being freed from his shabby, constricting, little cell, suddenly say "I really want to go back to jail and be put in a cell. It sounds pretty cool. Being able to come back. Who wouldn't want that?"
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Re: How to get rid of clinging to self

Postby Jnana » Wed Nov 14, 2012 4:55 am

The same way you get to Carnegie Hall: practice, practice, practice.
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Re: How to get rid of clinging to self

Postby futerko » Wed Nov 14, 2012 5:04 am

Think about what happens when you identify with something, for example when you say I am this or that, you are excluding the other possibilities and anchoring yourself to something partial rather than remaining open to the whole.
we cannot get rid of God because we still believe in grammar - Nietzsche
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Re: How to get rid of clinging to self

Postby pueraeternus » Wed Nov 14, 2012 5:11 am

Reciting and contemplation of the Heart Sutra is often a very efficient practice for piercing ego, among other things. In East Asia, due to its relative short length, practitioners would memorize it and recite it continuously.
If you believe certain words, you believe their hidden arguments. When you believe something is right or wrong, true of false, you believe the assumptions in the words which express the arguments. Such assumptions are often full of holes, but remain most precious to the convinced.

- The Open-Ended Proof from The Panoplia Prophetica
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Re: How to get rid of clinging to self

Postby muni » Wed Nov 14, 2012 10:38 am

To know that we all are perfect nature already and there is a temporary misperception (duality) can be encouraging.

There is no wrong one, but mispercieving suffering.
May no suffer be.

Yes, Jnana, practice, thank you.

:namaste:
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Re: How to get rid of clinging to self

Postby Astus » Wed Nov 14, 2012 10:54 am

The Buddha's basic remedy is the contemplation on the five aggregates and the 6-12-18 sensory fields. To see that whatever you call the I must be an aggregate, and all aggregates bear the three characteristics (impermanent, suffering, selfless) results in comprehending and even realising that there is no such thing as an I.
"There is no such thing as the real mind. Ridding yourself of delusion: that's the real mind."
(Sheng-yen: Getting the Buddha Mind, p 73)

“Don’t rashly seek the true Buddha;
True Buddha can’t be found.
Does marvelous nature and spirit
Need tempering or refinement?
Mind is this mind carefree;
This face, the face at birth."

(Nanyue Mingzan: Enjoying the Way, tr. Jeff Shore; T51n2076, p461b24-26)
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Re: How to get rid of clinging to self

Postby Johnny Dangerous » Wed Nov 14, 2012 4:35 pm

Two things that help me some, old hat for many i'm sure.

First I just ask "who am I", and name five things that define me, then follow these five things to their conclusion, and I see there is no "I" found in them, whatever I name will only be relationships to something else.

Sometimes when meditating I focus on physical pain I am feeling (don't know why pain is easier than anything else), and try to inquire into the pain and follow it to it's root...if/when i've been successful I can sort of "see" that the pain is not a thing but the working of the aggregates.
"Just as a lotus does not grow out of a well-levelled soil but from the mire, in the same way the awakening mind
is not born in the hearts of disciples in whom the moisture of attachment has dried up. It grows instead in the hearts of ordinary sentient beings who possess in full the fetters of bondage." -Se Chilbu Choki Gyaltsen
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Re: How to get rid of clinging to self

Postby greentara » Thu Nov 15, 2012 11:13 pm

Johny Dangerous, Who am I?... is the ultimate question. It is stated in many different ways that the focus should be the origin of the I and to literally follow the thoughts back to their source and abide there right at that point of origin. Nisargadatta also points to this placeless place as just prior to the rise of the thought. Others even say I is the first name of God and holding the "I" can be a mantra which reminds one strongly of the diamond cutter sutra...a honing of all thoughts down to just the first principle. All that said, the point is the origin and directing the attention there as it wanders again and again. I really don't think there is one specific method for everyone. Don't all stances go in the end?
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Re: How to get rid of clinging to self

Postby seeker242 » Fri Nov 16, 2012 12:08 am

Insight meditation practice I would think. :smile:
One should not kill any living being, nor cause it to be killed, nor should one incite any other to kill. Do never injure any being, whether strong or weak, in this entire universe!
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Re: How to get rid of clinging to self

Postby floating_abu » Fri Nov 16, 2012 10:23 am

Jnana wrote:The same way you get to Carnegie Hall: practice, practice, practice.


Second vote.

Persistence, inquiry and doubt.
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Re: How to get rid of clinging to self

Postby Red Faced Buddha » Fri Nov 16, 2012 10:29 am

How exactly is the concept of I an illusion?I can understand that there is no self set in stone but there is still technically a being called Red Faced Buddha.My major problem is my fear of impermanence and anatman.
A person once asked me why I would want to stop rebirth. "It sounds pretty cool. Being able to come back. Who wouldn't want to be reborn."
I replied. "Wanting to be reborn is like wanting to stay in a jail cell, when you have the chance to go free and experience the whole wide world. Does a convict, on being freed from his shabby, constricting, little cell, suddenly say "I really want to go back to jail and be put in a cell. It sounds pretty cool. Being able to come back. Who wouldn't want that?"
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Re: How to get rid of clinging to self

Postby futerko » Fri Nov 16, 2012 5:09 pm

Red Faced Buddha wrote:How exactly is the concept of I an illusion?I can understand that there is no self set in stone but there is still technically a being called Red Faced Buddha.My major problem is my fear of impermanence and anatman.


Just to clarify, are you asking about personal identity here, or about the ontological status of awareness?
we cannot get rid of God because we still believe in grammar - Nietzsche
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Re: How to get rid of clinging to self

Postby duckfiasco » Fri Nov 16, 2012 6:34 pm

Red Faced Buddha wrote:How exactly is the concept of I an illusion?I can understand that there is no self set in stone but there is still technically a being called Red Faced Buddha.My major problem is my fear of impermanence and anatman.

Well, what is a being then? What is YOUR being? Follow the question to its most absurd lengths. The point isn't to prove some nihilist brainteaser "none of us really exists!"

Where you may arrive though is the apparent realization of nothing seeming to exist independently with clear-cut borders, nothing seeming to have a man behind the curtain calling the shots. And yet here you are. Paradoxes are good at stopping our minds, especially when we have a sense that it's not a paradox at all. Welcome to the absurdity of our normal views! :D Our natural state seems supremely bizarre if you look too close :P
Namu Amida Butsu
"When people of the Pure Land school chant Namu amida butsu, they are doing zazen with their mouths, and when we do zazen, we are performing Namu amida butsu with our whole body." - Kosho Uchiyama (Opening the Hand of Thought)
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Re: How to get rid of clinging to self

Postby Queequeg » Fri Nov 16, 2012 7:09 pm

Johnny Dangerous wrote:"who am I"


The Eternal Question...

From one of the greatest movies of all time (IMHO)

http://youtu.be/THRB4bv1-mw
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Re: How to get rid of clinging to self

Postby Queequeg » Fri Nov 16, 2012 7:33 pm

duckfiasco wrote:
Red Faced Buddha wrote:How exactly is the concept of I an illusion?I can understand that there is no self set in stone but there is still technically a being called Red Faced Buddha.My major problem is my fear of impermanence and anatman.

Well, what is a being then? What is YOUR being? Follow the question to its most absurd lengths. The point isn't to prove some nihilist brainteaser "none of us really exists!"

Where you may arrive though is the apparent realization of nothing seeming to exist independently with clear-cut borders, nothing seeming to have a man behind the curtain calling the shots. And yet here you are. Paradoxes are good at stopping our minds, especially when we have a sense that it's not a paradox at all. Welcome to the absurdity of our normal views! :D Our natural state seems supremely bizarre if you look too close :P

:good:
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Re: How to get rid of clinging to self

Postby Johnny Dangerous » Fri Nov 16, 2012 7:39 pm

Just thinking about this, not to long ago I read A Profound Mind by HHDL.

The bits of emptiness/not self are especially good, and really gave me an understanding I did not have before, in pretty clear language. Something to work with in meditation made clearer.

I hate to do something as banal as recommending a book, but maybe it's worth it.

If you are able to successfully pall apart "I" and see that really there is no such thing, you can also do it outside of "I" with anything, and eventually see that "I" is just a set pf dependencies...
"Just as a lotus does not grow out of a well-levelled soil but from the mire, in the same way the awakening mind
is not born in the hearts of disciples in whom the moisture of attachment has dried up. It grows instead in the hearts of ordinary sentient beings who possess in full the fetters of bondage." -Se Chilbu Choki Gyaltsen
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Re: How to get rid of clinging to self

Postby floating_abu » Fri Nov 16, 2012 7:57 pm

Red Faced Buddha wrote:How exactly is the concept of I an illusion?I can understand that there is no self set in stone but there is still technically a being called Red Faced Buddha.My major problem is my fear of impermanence and anatman.


These questions are common for a beginner.

Practice furthers. Practice can give you answers that no-one on a forum can adequately give.

When you know, then as the Buddha said, it is like tasting the fruit for yourself. Would you want anything less?

Best wishes,

Abu
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Re: How to get rid of clinging to self

Postby floating_abu » Fri Nov 16, 2012 7:57 pm

Johnny Dangerous wrote:Just thinking about this, not to long ago I read A Profound Mind by HHDL.

The bits of emptiness/not self are especially good, and really gave me an understanding I did not have before, in pretty clear language. Something to work with in meditation made clearer.

I hate to do something as banal as recommending a book, but maybe it's worth it.

If you are able to successfully pall apart "I" and see that really there is no such thing, you can also do it outside of "I" with anything, and eventually see that "I" is just a set pf dependencies...


If it's an 'understanding', it will never be good enough.

Metta,

Abu
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Re: How to get rid of clinging to self

Postby KeithBC » Sun Nov 18, 2012 2:10 am

The Noble Eightfold Path.

Getting rid of clinging to self is what the Dharma is all about.

Om mani padme hum
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Re: How to get rid of clinging to self

Postby PorkChop » Sun Nov 18, 2012 3:17 am

Doing some intro to Mahamudra meditation today...
One of the practices was an exercise on expanding your consciousness, out of the body, infinitely all around, as if an expanding sphere of awareness.
Have hit moments in meditation before, but today was pretty poignant.
I started getting almost a panic attack - felt like i had to keep breathing, had to keep my heart breathing.
Realized that maybe this was the clinging to self at a very basic level.
I still have things i need to do in this life, like taking care of my kid(s), etc.
Will keep practicing, but don't know if that lesson will be absorbed until some of my responsibilities are not so immediate.
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