Nice advice and expression of anatta in recent days from Yin Ling and Albert Hong.


Thanks Soh Wei Yu. He collated all my random posts and Albert’s very nice comment, John’s training the AI 😂, and put it together.
Below is a crucial insight I wish everyone can realize.
When you bath the Buddha, the Buddha is you, the water is you, the temple is you, your hand is you, the ladle is you, and you are the nature of mind.
You are NOT the body, you are mind. You don’t die, don’t change, don’t move, and you are Buddha. Blessed Vesak. May all awaken to their true nature and stop suffering. 🙏🏻🙏🏻


Yin Ling:
First step of meditation is to ascertain the knowing MIND. Without it there is no realisation. The bird, the sky, the touch, the coffee, are all your MIND. MIND once ascertained and strengthen will take one out of “self view” to realisation & we won’t get lost.
The Satipatthana sutta is a wonderful instruction to reach insight.
“Feel the body in the body”, when practicing, don’t think. Feel.
Truly feel the body FROM inside the body. Feel the sound from the sound itself. (1) tbc
(2) feel the feelings, thoughts and all 6 senses in itself and via itself.
It is as though u Insert ur awareness into the middle of the feelings and feel from inside.
(3) practice satipatthana for months to years, consistently.
The Buddha’s mindfulness practice aim to transform our mind : 1) weaken the central self energy and 2) realising awareness has always infused in the 6 senses, not apart.
(4)satipatthana will bring u to the powerful no-self realisation, if u were taught correctly and if u practice consistently 2 hours a day.
The mind energy WILL transform rapidly in 8-12 months.

Yin Ling:

I went through vipassana, and then become non dual with strong sense of knowingness, then anatta.

Albert Hong:
it's remarkable that hearing is exactly the sound. there is no distance or gap. seeing is exactly color. feeling is exactly sensation. there is nothing extra. just that arising color, taste, sensation, sound.
and the flavor/texture of that is exactly consciousness. 
it's remarkable really. being to extend that sense of consciousness, which we all previously only emphasized as prior to thought, as some localized sensation behind the eyes. we have to notice how that is a very subtle effort, a kind of assumption at play. 
the flavor of consciousness is exactly the sensation, the color, the smell, the sensation. like holy shit there is no hearer. no seer. no feeler. it's only ever an assumption. 
you go into sensation for example. there is no actual link between sensations. it's only that sensation, which is exactly the flavor of luminosity. and it has no real link to anything else. thoughts don't touch it, smells don't, colors don't. it's remarkable what imputation-thought can assume to glob together a seeming "thingness".
but even between one sensation and another. there is only ever that arising which is exactly the sensation. there is no prior, so you don't even have a contrast. you can never hold two things. just that sensation. how remarkable. everything is contained right there. nothing prior, hence how could there even be a sensation. where is there continuity? there is no room or time or space for continuity. and yet it magically seems like there is.
even the witness. it's just a sensation at the end of the day. nothing prior, which experiences the witness-sensation. feeling is exactly that sensation. or lets extend that as the whole sphere of beingness. again another feeling-sensation. none of this has to disappear. the extra imputation of a feeler, has to be seen as silly. never will be, never has been, just never really examined.
Yin Ling's sharing:
John Tan's conversation with AtR bot:


Here's a crucial point about the practice, by Zen Master Thich Nhat Hanh:

"After explaining the sixteen methods of conscious breathing, the Buddha speaks about the Four Establishments of Mindfulness and the Seven Factors of Awakening. Everything that exists can be placed into one of the Four Establishments of Mindfulness—the body, the feelings, the mind, and the objects of the mind. Another way of saying “objects of mind” is “all dharmas,” which means “everything that is.” Therefore, all of the Four Establishments of Mindfulness are objects of the mind. In this sutra, we practice full awareness of the Four Establishments through conscious breathing. For a full understanding of the Four Establishments of Mindfulness, read the Satipatthana Sutta.24

The phrases “observing the body in the body,” “observing the feelings in the feelings,” “observing the mind in the mind,” and “observing the objects of mind in the objects of mind,” appear in the third section of the sutra. The key to “observation meditation” is that the subject of observation and the object of observation not be regarded as separate. A scientist might try to separate herself from the object she is observing and measuring, but students of meditation have to remove the boundary between subject and object. When we observe something, we are that thing. “Nonduality” is the key word. “Observing the body in the body” means that in the process of observing, you don’t stand outside your own body as if you were an independent observer, but you identify yourself one hundred percent with the object being observed. This is the only path that can lead to the penetration and direct experience of reality. In “observation meditation,” the body and mind are one entity, and the subject and object of meditation are one entity also. There is no sword of discrimination that slices reality into many parts. The meditator is a fully engaged participant, not a separate observer."

(2011-12-20T22:58:59). Awakening of the Heart . Parallax Press. Kindle Edition.


level 2

If you can practice the above and go along with this understanding and contemplation of anatman, you will have profound experiential awakening to your true nature:

Zen Master Thich Nhat Hanh:

"When we say it's raining, we mean that raining is taking place. You don't need someone up above to perform the raining. It's not that there is the rain, and there is the one who causes the rain to fall. In fact, when you say the rain is falling, it's very funny, because if it weren't falling, it wouldn't be rain. In our way of speaking, we're used to having a subject and a verb. That's why we need the word "it" when we say, "it rains." "It" is the subject, the one who makes the rain possible. But, looking deeply, we don't need a "rainer," we just need the rain. Raining and the rain are the same. The formations of birds and the birds are the same -- there's no "self," no boss involved.

There's a mental formation called vitarka, "initial thought." When we use the verb "to think" in English, we need a subject of the verb: I think, you think, he thinks. But, really, you don't need a subject for a thought to be produced. Thinking without a thinker -- it's absolutely possible. To think is to think about something. To perceive is to perceive something. The perceiver and the perceived object that is perceived are one.
When Descartes said, "I think, therefore I am," his point was that if I think, there must be an "I" for thinking to be possible. When he made the declaration "I think," he believed that he could demonstrate that the "I" exists. We have the strong habit or believing in a self. But, observing very deeply, we can see that a thought does not need a thinker to be possible. There is no thinker behind the thinking -- there is just the thinking; that's enough.

Now, if Mr. Descartes were here, we might ask him, "Monsieur Descartes, you say, 'You think, therefore you are.' But what are you? You are your thinking. Thinking -- that's enough. Thinking manifests without the need of a self behind it."
Thinking without a thinker. Feeling without a feeler. What is our anger without our 'self'? This is the object of our meditation. All the fifty-one mental formations take place and manifest without a self behind them arranging for this to appear, and then for that to appear. Our mind consciousness is in the habit of basing itself on the idea of self, on manas. But we can meditate to be more aware of our store consciousness, where we keep the seeds of all those mental formations that are not currently manifesting in our mind.
When we meditate, we practice looking deeply in order to bring light and clarity into our way of seeing things. When the vision of no-self is obtained, our delusion is removed. This is what we call transformation. In the Buddhist tradition, transformation is possible with deep understanding. The moment the vision of no-self is there, manas, the elusive notion of 'I am,' disintegrates, and we find ourselves enjoying, in this very moment, freedom and happiness."


"When we say I know the wind is blowing, we don't think that there is something blowing something else. "Wind' goes with 'blowing'. If there is no blowing, there is no wind. It is the same with knowing. Mind is the knower; the knower is mind. We are talking about knowing in relation to the wind. 'To know' is to know something. Knowing is inseparable from the wind. Wind and knowing are one. We can say, 'Wind,' and that is enough. The presence of wind indicates the presence of knowing, and the presence of the action of blowing'."

"..The most universal verb is the verb 'to be'': I am, you are, the mountain is, a river is. The verb 'to be' does not express the dynamic living state of the universe. To express that we must say 'become.' These two verbs can also be used as nouns: 'being", "becoming". But being what? Becoming what? 'Becoming' means 'evolving ceaselessly', and is as universal as the verb "to be." It is not possible to express the "being" of a phenomenon and its "becoming" as if the two were independent. In the case of wind, blowing is the being and the becoming...."

"In any phenomena, whether psychological, physiological, or physical, there is dynamic movement, life. We can say that this movement, this life, is the universal manifestation, the most commonly recognized action of knowing. We must not regard 'knowing' as something from the outside which comes to breathe life into the universe. It is the life of the universe itself. The dance and the dancer are one."



Apr 29, 2010, 11:48:00 AM
Thankyou sir. That quote of Buddha was quite powerful and for the last few days seems to have somehow hit somewhere deep that is making the mindfulness 'easier' than earlier!
Apr 29, 2010, 11:53:00 AM
"This is how a monk remains focused on the body in & of itself"
Can you guide me on how to understand "in and of itself" that is part of the quote relating to the body?
Apr 29, 2010, 3:32:00 PM
Hi Buddha Bra, glad it's working for you :)
Regarding "in and of itself", here are some explanations by Thich Nhat Hanh:
"The Satipatthana Sutta, a Buddhist scripture which teaches awareness, uses expressions such as "observing the body in the body," "observing the feelings in the feelings," "observing the mind in the mind," "observing the objects of mind in the objects of mind." Why are the words, body, feelings, mind, and objects of mind repeated? Some masters of the Abhidhamma say that the purpose of this repetition is to underline the importance of these words. I see it otherwise. I think that these words are repeated in order to remind us not to separate the meditator and the object of meditation. We must live with the object, identify with it, merge with it, like a grain of salt entering the sea in order to measure the saltiness of the sea."
Also on a related note... Dr. John Welwood writes,
"We can only perceive the suchness of things through an awareness that opens to them nonconceptualy and unconditionally, allowing them to reveal themselves in their as-it-is-ness. As the poet Basho suggests:
'From the pine tree
Learn of the pine tree
And from the bamboo
of the bamboo.'
Commenting on these lines, the Japanese philosopher Nishitani (1982) explains that Basho does not mean
'That we should ‘observe the pine tree carefully.’ Still less does he mean for us to ‘study the pine tree scientifically.’ He means for us to enter the mode of being where the pine tree is the pine tree itself, and the bamboo is the bamboo itself, and from there to look at the pine tree and the bamboo. He calls on us to betake ourselves to the dimension where things become manifest in their suchness.' (p. 128)
In the same vein, Zen Master Dogen advises: “You should not restrict yourselves to learning to see water from the viewpoints of human beings alone. Know that you must see water in the way water sees water” (Izutsu, 1972, p. 140). “Seeing water in the way water sees water” means recognizing water in its suchness, free of all concepts that spring from an observing mind standing back from experience."
You will see the "in and of itself" stressed throughout the Mahasatipatthana sutta, what I have quoted is only a small portion.

 What is experiential insight


Yin Ling:

When we say experiential insight in Buddhism, 

It means.. 

A literal transformation of energetic orientation of the whole being, down to the marrow. 

The sound MUST literally hears themselves. 

No hearer. 

Clean. Clear. 

A bondage from the head here to there cut off overnight. 

Then gradually the rest of the 5 senses. 

Then one can talk about Anatta. 

So if for you, 

Does sound hear themselves? 

If no, not yet. You have to keep going! Inquire and meditate.

You haven’t reach the basic insight requirement for the deeper insights like anatta and emptiness yet!

Yin Ling:

Yin Ling: “Realisation is when 

This insight goes down to the marrow and you don’t need even a minute amount of effort for sound to hear themselves. 

It is like how you live with dualistic perception now, very normal, no effort. 

Ppl with Anatta realisation live in Anatta effortlessly, without using thinking to orient. It’s their life. 

They cannot even go back to dualistic perception because that is an imputation, it js uprooted 

At first you might need to purposely orient with some effort. 

Then at one point there is no need.. further along, dreams will become Anatta too. 

That’s experiential realisation. 

There’s no realisation unless this benchmark is achieved!”









what is important is that there is experiential realisation that leads

to an energetic expansion outwards into all the forms, sounds, radiant

universe... such that it is not that you are in here, in the body,

looking outwards at the tree, listening the birds chirping from here

it is just the trees are vividly swaying in and of itself, luminously

without an observer

the trees sees themselves

the sounds hear itself

there is no location from which they are experienced, no vantage point

the energetic expansion outward into vivid manifestation, boundless, yet

it is not an expansion from a center, there is just no center

without such energetic shift it is not really the real experience of no

selfxabir Snoovatar" -


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Here is something I shared with a redditor:

Tag: practicing vipassana to realise stream entry

Hi, welcome to AtR.

First of all you should understand that in AtR we consider stream entry based on suttas to be different from the notions of what stream entry is in most of reddit.

I recently wrote on reddit:

“What Krodha said in this thread is right: "It is quite rare to attain stream entry, I’ve been involved with dharma for over a decade and can count those who are tried and true stream entrants on one hand. That said, contemplate the Bahiya and Kalakarama suttas and cultivate the first dhyāna."

I would add that many people have misunderstood what stream entry is. Maybe 99% on reddit. The only thread on the streamentry subreddit that correctly presents stream entry can be found in , it is a good read and highly recommended reading.

I would add that despite its rarity, it is very much attainable with the right pointers and practices and I know many more stream enterers than krodha.


Glad you liked it. If that interests you, I think this should interest you too. On nondual awareness and its nature and the subtleties of insight:

🙏 :) p.s. I'm Soh, and Thusness (John Tan) is my mentor... I've been through similar stages in my journey”

Next, as for practice advise, we generally recommend people to start with Self Enquiry in AtR in order to realise I AM first. But if you do not wish or do not resonate with it, then you can follow the following standard stock message I send to people trying to breakthrough to anatman:

"It is advisable for you to practice vipassana in this way , while contemplating on the two stanzas of anatta and bahiya sutta

It will lead to the anatman (no-self) realisation and breakthrough "

See comments below on the difference between self enquiry and vipassana


On self enquiry vs vipassana, John Tan wrote in Dharma Overground back in 2009,

“Hi Gary,

It appears that there are two groups of practitioners in this forum, one adopting the gradual approach and the other, the direct path. I am quite new here so I may be wrong.

My take is that you are adopting a gradual approach yet you are experiencing something very significant in the direct path, that is, the ‘Watcher’. As what Kenneth said, “You're onto something very big here, Gary. This practice will set you free.” But what Kenneth said would require you to be awaken to this ‘I’. It requires you to have the ‘eureka!’ sort of realization. Awaken to this ‘I’, the path of spirituality becomes clear; it is simply the unfolding of this ‘I’.

On the other hand, what that is described by Yabaxoule is a gradual approach and therefore there is downplaying of the ‘I AM’. You have to gauge your own conditions, if you choose the direct path, you cannot downplay this ‘I’; contrary, you must fully and completely experience the whole of ‘YOU’ as ‘Existence’. Emptiness nature of our pristine nature will step in for the direct path practitioners when they come face to face to the ‘traceless’, ‘centerless’ and ‘effortless’ nature of non-dual awareness.

Perhaps a little on where the two approaches meet will be of help to you.

Awakening to the ‘Watcher’ will at the same time ‘open’ the ‘eye of immediacy’; that is, it is the capacity to immediately penetrate discursive thoughts and sense, feel, perceive without intermediary the perceived. It is a kind of direct knowing. You must be deeply aware of this “direct without intermediary” sort of perception -- too direct to have subject-object gap, too short to have time, too simple to have thoughts. It is the ‘eye’ that can see the whole of ‘sound’ by being ‘sound’. It is the same ‘eye’ that is required when doing vipassana, that is, being ‘bare’. Be it non-dual or vipassana, both require the opening of this 'eye of immediacy'.”


In 2009, John Tan wrote:

"Hi Teck Cheong,

What you described is fine and it can be considered vipassana meditation too but you must be clear what is the main objective of practicing that way. Ironically, the real purpose only becomes obvious after the arising insight of anatta. What I gathered so far from your descriptions are not so much about anatta or empty nature of phenomena but are rather drawn towards Awareness practice. So it will be good to start from understanding what Awareness truly is. All the method of practices that you mentioned will lead to a quality of experience that is non-conceptual. You can have non-conceptual experience of sound, taste...etc...but more importantly in my opinion, you should start from having a direct, non-conceptual experience of Awareness (first glimpse of our luminous essence). Once you have a ‘taste’ of what Awareness is, you can then think of ‘expanding’ this bare awareness and gradually understand what does ‘heightening and expanding’ mean from the perspective of Awareness.

Next, although you hear and see ‘non-dual, anatta and dependent origination’ all over the place in An Eternal Now’s forum (the recent Toni Packer’s books you bought are about non-dual and anatta), there is nothing wrong being ‘dualistic’ for a start. Even after direct non-conceptual experience of Awareness, our view will still continue to be dualistic; so do not have the idea that being dualistic is bad although it prevents thorough experience of liberation.

The comment given by Dharma Dan is very insightful but of late, I realized that it is important to have a first glimpse of our luminous essence directly before proceeding into such understanding. Sometimes understanding something too early will deny oneself from actual realization as it becomes conceptual. Once the conceptual understanding is formed, even qualified masters will find it difficult to lead the practitioner to the actual ‘realization’ as a practitioner mistakes conceptual understanding for realization.



“The anatta I realized is quite unique. It is not just a realization of no-self. But it must first have an intuitive insight of Presence. Otherwise will have to reverse the phases of insights.” - John Tan, 2018


This conversation with john tan / thusness also reveals whats lacking in most approaches to “vipassana”:


If you are interested in or curious about the approach of self enquiry (and even if you are not, there are still good pointers inside), you can read the AtR practice guide in

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