Krishnamurti & the Art of Awakening
A Quiet Space | moderated by Clive Elwell

Excerpts from "The Question to Life's Answers"


Displaying posts 61 - 90 of 122 in total
Sun, 08 Dec 2019 #61
Thumb_kinfonet_avatar Clive Elwell New Zealand 5551 posts in this forum Offline

Dan McDermott wrote:
o there is no 'staying with' because we think that we know what we will see...that there is nothing new there.

There is no "staying with" anything, is there? Everything is always changing, moving. Especially psychologically. The very idea of "I am" anything is false, is it not? One is always "passing through". But that is a wrong description, still suggesting there is a permanent "one" who does (changing) things.

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Sun, 08 Dec 2019 #62
Thumb_kinfonet_avatar Clive Elwell New Zealand 5551 posts in this forum Offline

Tom Paine wrote:
This seems to contradict the quote from K that I posted above in #58

In what way, Tom? K is talking about watching, observing the mind.

Tom Paine wrote:
“There is nothing to do because there is no doer. There is nothing to resolve, nothing to fill, nothing to fix.” Steven Harrison
K has often said that there is no 'do-er', has he not? And if there is no do-er, how can that do-er do anything, fix anything?

Can we say that the hard work lies in continually realising, seeing, that there is no doer. This seeing is a process of observation, not doing. But I understand that thought finds it very hard to distinguish between doing and seeing.

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Sun, 08 Dec 2019 #63
Thumb_donna_and_jim_fb_bw Tom Paine United States 3103 posts in this forum Offline

Clive Elwell wrote:
Tom Paine wrote:

This seems to contradict the quote from K that I posted above in #58

In what way, Tom? K is talking about watching, observing the mind.

“Nothing to fix” (Harrison)? There’s no pettiness, violence, greed, etc? Nothing to ‘grapple’ with?

Let it Be

This post was last updated by Tom Paine Sun, 08 Dec 2019.

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Sun, 08 Dec 2019 #64
Thumb_donna_and_jim_fb_bw Tom Paine United States 3103 posts in this forum Offline

Clive: ‘realizing, seeing, that there is no do-er’

Or understanding the do-er...self knowledge. Perhaps you’ll share sometime how Harrison approaches the issue of man’s violence or greed for example. Is the issue of violence related to the idea of the me...the self image? I think it is, but need to look further into that. It’s obviously related to the ideals and should and should nots that create such division internally and externally. ‘I’m good or I’m bad’, or ‘you’re good or bad.’ I think K once said that thought is violence. He was referring to that kind of psychological thought which divides I’m sure

Let it Be

This post was last updated by Tom Paine Sun, 08 Dec 2019.

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Sun, 08 Dec 2019 #65
Thumb_kinfonet_avatar Clive Elwell New Zealand 5551 posts in this forum Offline

Tom Paine wrote:
“Nothing to fix” (Harrison)? There’s no pettiness, violence, greed, etc? Nothing to ‘grapple’ with?

Well, I know there is a car that needs fixing today :-). And more than that, there is a whole world that needs “fixing”, innumerable environmental problems, lack of healthy food, shelter, water, all the problems that mankind has created. And one might ask to what extent the problems have been created by the limited “fixing mentality”. That mentality involves a “fixer”.

Let us limit the discussion to psychological problems. Of course there is pettiness, violence, greed in the world (that world including me of course) and a whole lot more of “etc”. And there is, and apparently always has been, a lot of attempts to “fix” those things. Has there been any success? We seem to go from bad to worse. We seem to live in a world of "grappling", without significant change ever happening.

Now Harrison says “there is nothing to fix”.

Perhaps you’ll share sometime how Harrison approaches the issue of man’s violence or greed for example.

Well, not by trying to fix things, at least in a direct, reactive way. But I don’t want just to present some words by him as an answer to your question; as you pointed out recently, there is danger in accepting anyone as an authority. And he himself says that he’s just trying to start a dialogue with people.

Can we take it for granted that we cannot change the world around us for the better? That we cannot improve people by trying to improve them, and it is arrogance to think that we can? We do influence the world by what we are, by how we relate, but that is not intentional.

So we are left with ‘ourselves’, aren’t we?

Do we not see through the myth of trying to fix ourselves? Perhaps not because there is nothing to fix, as Harrison puts it – although we could inquire more deeply into that – but because there is no such entity as ‘the fixer’. There is no fixer separate from what is being tried to fix. It always comes down to this point, doesn’t it?

Is the issue of violence related to the idea of the me...the self image? I think it is, but need to look further into that. It’s obviously related to the ideals and should and should nots that create such division internally and externally. ‘I’m good or I’m bad’, or ‘you’re good or bad.’ I think K once said that thought is violence. He was referring to that kind of psychological thought which divides I’m sure

Isn’t ALL psychological thought divisive? Is there such a thing as non-divisive psychological thought? The starting point to psychological thought is the concept of “me”, isn’t it? So immediately that thought has divided things into the me and the not-me. When I look at something, it is the “me” that is looking at something, so implicit in that way of looking is a division – the looker and the looked at.

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Mon, 09 Dec 2019 #66
Thumb_dm Dan McDermott United States 1651 posts in this forum Offline

Clive Elwell wrote:
There is no fixer separate from what is being tried to fix. It always comes down to this point, doesn’t it?

What could be going on here is a movement toward a different human consciousness. It may be wrong to keep thinking of the chaos in the world around us and be more attentive to what is going on in us. We may be part in a very long process, a process where there is a change. Maybe not, maybe so. The same thing that brought us down from the trees and gave us this more complex brain could be continuing in that brain evolution. I'm not saying psychological evolution but the physical brain itself. I don't know if you feel at times as I do the great distance from what others are believing, doing, striving for, etc. But just the 'feeling' of that distance may have some sort of effect on others. Who knows. I'm not talking of 'teaching' others what we are seeing as important. There are plenty out there doing that and cashing in on it. It becomes a racket. Our challenge is freedom from the known, isn't it?

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Mon, 09 Dec 2019 #67
Thumb_donna_and_jim_fb_bw Tom Paine United States 3103 posts in this forum Offline

Clive Elwell wrote:
There is no fixer separate from what is being tried to fix. It always comes down to this point, doesn’t it?

Yes,I agree. When we feel separation, then we try to fix what is...be it violence, fear, anger, etc. I who am separate from violence will try to act upon it. However, as long as this separation...this violence and confusion and misery exists...I don’t see how Harrison can say, ‘there’s nothing to fix’. If I run for a cigarette every time I’m feeling conflict, I want to know what that’s all about. Obviously I don’t want to get lung cancer, yet I feel compelled to smoke. I need to look carefully at that...I do want it ‘fixed’, right? Or, it may be a loved one who smokes or abuses alcohol. We want to understand that right? To help ‘fix’ the situation. They might kill themselves with their addiction. Do we feel that there’s nothing to fix? I misspoke about psychological thought. You stated it correctly.

Let it Be

This post was last updated by Tom Paine Mon, 09 Dec 2019.

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Mon, 09 Dec 2019 #68
Thumb_dm Dan McDermott United States 1651 posts in this forum Offline

Tom Paine wrote:
, it may be a loved one who smokes or abuses alcohol. We want to understand that right? To help ‘fix’ the situation.

Is the 'self' less "evil" when it desires to do what it considers noble? There's 'fixing' that needs to be done of course, the car, the house, keeping others from killing themselves etc. but the fixing being talked about here , I believe, is fixing oneself. Can the 'self' fix itself? Make itself 'better', less violent, less frightened, less lonely, etc.? How? Who would be the 'fixer'? The 'self' itself,, right? One fragment working on another. That's 'self improvement' isn't it and that hasn't made any difference has it? So in that sense of 'fixing', there really nothing 'positive' to be done, is there, only negatively (negation).

This post was last updated by Dan McDermott Mon, 09 Dec 2019.

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Mon, 09 Dec 2019 #69
Thumb_donna_and_jim_fb_bw Tom Paine United States 3103 posts in this forum Offline

Dan McDermott wrote:
Tom Paine wrote:

, it may be a loved one who smokes or abuses alcohol. We want to understand that right? To help ‘fix’ the situation.

Is the 'self' less "evil" when it desires to do what it considers noble?

But we DO want to understand ourselves right? Or do we just turn on the TV and carry on?

Let it Be

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Mon, 09 Dec 2019 #70
Thumb_dm Dan McDermott United States 1651 posts in this forum Offline

Tom Paine wrote:
But we DO want to understand ourselves right?

Hi Tom. I added some 'stuff' to #68. Does understanding what we are, come from desire? Is there a motive behind the desire? Do we desire to understand and then that desire pushes us to understand, etc.? Or is that 'desire' itself, that needs to be 'understood, seen?...I don't know, just asking.

This post was last updated by Dan McDermott Mon, 09 Dec 2019.

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Mon, 09 Dec 2019 #71
Thumb_donna_and_jim_fb_bw Tom Paine United States 3103 posts in this forum Offline

Dan McDermott wrote:
Can the 'self' fix itself? Make itself 'better', less violent, less frightened, less lonely, etc.? How? Who would be the 'fixer'? The 'self' itself,, right?

Exactly! The one who is afraid tries to fix fear...the one who is violent tries to fix violence. Makes no sense when we put it that way. Yet somehow we think the me fragment is able to fix the fragment it doesn’t like....all fragments in ‘me’.

Let it Be

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Mon, 09 Dec 2019 #72
Thumb_dm Dan McDermott United States 1651 posts in this forum Offline

Tom Paine wrote:
Yet somehow we think the me fragment is able to fix the fragment it doesn’t like....all fragments in ‘me’.

Yeah that's what I think isn't seen: that there's a 'controlling' fragment, the 'alpha' fragment but it's actually no different. It 'feels' as if it has a permanence and it isn't aware of its "transience".

And that may be because it gives the brain a sense of security to think that someone or something is actually in control. But that false sense of safety and security is what is so destructive?

And not seeing and understanding that, keeps us in the 'dark'? The 'dark' of the illusory world of the 'self'?

This post was last updated by Dan McDermott Mon, 09 Dec 2019.

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Mon, 09 Dec 2019 #73
Thumb_kinfonet_avatar Clive Elwell New Zealand 5551 posts in this forum Offline

Dan McDermott wrote #66:
What could be going on here is a movement toward a different human consciousness. It may be wrong to keep thinking of the chaos in the world around us and be more attentive to what is going on in us.

Doesn't one need to be aware of both? After all, they are not separate things, are they, the chaos in the world and the chaos in me.

Dan McDermott wrote:
We may be part in a very long process, a process where there is a change. Maybe not, maybe so. The same thing that brought us down from the trees and gave us this more complex brain could be continuing in that brain evolution.

Sometimes I think that the great tragedy is that we are going to destroy ourselves before that ...... before the full potential of the human brain is realised. Or reduce ourselves to our a state of affairs when mere survival, brutish survival, is going to take up all of our time (that is, the ones that MANAGE to survive), and there is no leisure to attend to this "evolution of the brain" that you refer to, Dan. That we will will reduce ourselves to a state of barbarism such that our true purpose is utterly lost sight of. I am very pessimistic about the future of mankind - and for most life on earth unfortunately.

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Mon, 09 Dec 2019 #74
Thumb_kinfonet_avatar Clive Elwell New Zealand 5551 posts in this forum Offline

Dan McDermott wrote #66:
I don't know if you feel at times as I do the great distance from what others are believing, doing, striving for, etc

I must admit that often I do feel that great distance, a lot of the time. But perhaps all people out there also feel a distance? Is it a normal part of the human psyche? But perhaps not, because I observe a very strong urge, movement, in others to conform in their behaviour. People in general do not seem to be able to think for themselves.

And yet I also see that everything that is in other people's minds is also in mine. The same movements, the same contents - I don't have to go into those. This is at least part of my understanding of the phrase "I am the world". And indeed I feel there is no real distinction between "my mind" and the mind of others. It is the human mind.

And yet as you say Dan, a 'distance', a difference, is felt. So where, if it exists, does it lie? Is it a matter of identification. I mean many things pass through the mind, but they are not necessarily identified with.

Perhaps another difference is that one is willing to question most things, while the world seems based on conclusion, on belief, on ideology?

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Mon, 09 Dec 2019 #75
Thumb_dm Dan McDermott United States 1651 posts in this forum Offline

Is part of it that ‘they’ sense that they are on a ‘precipice’ even less than we do?

This post was last updated by Dan McDermott Mon, 09 Dec 2019.

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Mon, 09 Dec 2019 #76
Thumb_kinfonet_avatar Clive Elwell New Zealand 5551 posts in this forum Offline

Tom Paine wrote:
Or, it may be a loved one who smokes or abuses alcohol. We want to understand that right? To help ‘fix’ the situation. They might kill themselves with their addiction. Do we feel that there’s nothing to fix?

I am looking at what you say in the context of my young friend "A", as I described in another thread. She certainly has 'problems', more than I described in fact, psychological problems that might come to dominate her whole life, dictate the course of her life. (I don't think one will get very far if one starts to compare her problems with those of others, so I. won't go down that track). Do I want to "fix her", I am asking myself? And if so, what is my motive?

I don't want to "fix her" in the sense of...... well, I will quote K:

It is no measure of good health to be well adjusted to a profoundly sick society

I would like to "fix her" in the sense of her to be free of her particular problems because I feel she has potential to become a different sort of human being. Perhaps one could say I desire her freedom. And life seems to have brought us into some contact.

Of course we have the same responsibility towards all human beings. But most are invulnerable, they are sure that they know the answers to their problems (even if those answers are not quite working yet!)

But I should add that I have considerable doubts about the whole concept of me "fixing" another human being, or anything in the psychological realm. It seems the wrong approach. As I said before, there is arrogance in such an approach. But really, what I really want, is for "A" to start questioning herself, not to follow my "advice". Although there may be a place for advice, occasionally, with the young, or friends, if given tentatively.

Perhaps I have wondered from the original point, sorry.

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Mon, 09 Dec 2019 #77
Thumb_kinfonet_avatar Clive Elwell New Zealand 5551 posts in this forum Offline

Dan McDermott wrote:
So in that sense of 'fixing', there really nothing 'positive' to be done, is there, only negatively (negation).

Right

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Mon, 09 Dec 2019 #78
Thumb_donna_and_jim_fb_bw Tom Paine United States 3103 posts in this forum Offline

Is part of it that ‘they’ sense that they are on a ‘precipice’ even less than we do?

Oblivious is the word that comes to mind. It’s not that I feel superior but many guys I meet casually only talk about football or movies...the escapist kind. Totally oblivious to the environmental crisis...to the wars...as long as they are elsewhere . I wouldn’t even begin to discuss our own responsibility in all this. I have a close family member who is the same. I love her no less for it. I understand why she’s escaping....escaping so much unresolved conflict and inner pain.?

Let it Be

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Mon, 09 Dec 2019 #79
Thumb_kinfonet_avatar Clive Elwell New Zealand 5551 posts in this forum Offline

Dan McDermott wrote:
It 'feels' as if it has a permanence and it isn't aware of its "transience".

The constant discovering that the apparent permanence of the self is actually transient is what I see as meditation.

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Mon, 09 Dec 2019 #80
Thumb_kinfonet_avatar Clive Elwell New Zealand 5551 posts in this forum Offline

Dan McDermott wrote:
Is part of it that ‘they’ sense that they are on a ‘precipice’ even less than we do?

Well this certainly seems to be true, and it is a great mystery to me. In a way people go about their affairs as if there isn't a care in the world. Or more accurate to say they pursue their own self interests, their own pleasures, their own security, as if the world is perfectly stable and will go on for ever providing a backdrop for all their plans.

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Mon, 09 Dec 2019 #81
Thumb_donna_and_jim_fb_bw Tom Paine United States 3103 posts in this forum Offline

Clive Elwell wrote:
But I should add that I have considerable doubts about the whole concept of me "fixing" another human being, or anything in the psychological realm. It seems the wrong approach. As I said before, there is arrogance in such an approach. But really, what I really want, is for "A" to start questioning herself, not to follow my "advice". Although there may be a place for advice, occasionally, with the young, or friends, if given tentatively.

No, I didn’t mean to imply I want to fix a friend or loved one who is suffering. Only that if I myself can change then perhaps I will have a ‘positive ‘ effect in some way. If I can understand conflict in myself then perhaps I can talk more intelligently to a friend who is feeling deep conflict and confusion. That how I was using the word ‘fix’.

Let it Be

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Tue, 10 Dec 2019 #82
Thumb_dm Dan McDermott United States 1651 posts in this forum Offline

Clive Elwell wrote:
it is a great mystery to me. In a way people go about their affairs as if there isn't a care in the world. Or more accurate to say they pursue their own self interests, their own pleasures, their own security, as if the world is perfectly stable and will go on for ever providing a backdrop for all their plans.

Yes it's amazing. And we were a part of it up to a certain point and then the questioning began in earnest.

Like a collective 'dream' state?

This post was last updated by Dan McDermott Tue, 10 Dec 2019.

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Tue, 10 Dec 2019 #83
Thumb_donna_and_jim_fb_bw Tom Paine United States 3103 posts in this forum Offline

Huguette brought up the subject of desire a while back in this thread and related it to the subject of effort. I'm not sure I fully understand what she said or what K was trying to get across in the excerpt she shared so I'll share it here in case anyone wants to get back to the topic of effort and desire. I DO see that when I desire something or other I have to make an effort to get it and then there's all the conflict that comes from that...and fear of not getting it. Here's the K. excerpt again:

https://jkrishnamurti.org/content/what-signific...:

So far, we have always done something about desire, given it the right channel, the right slant, the right aim, the right end. And if the mind - which is conditioned, which is always thinking in terms of achievement, through training, through education and so on - is no longer trying to shape desire as something apart from itself if the mind is no longer interfering with desire, if I may use that word, then what is wrong with desire? Then, is it the thing we have always known as desire? Please, sirs, go along with it, come with me.
You see, we have always thought of desire in terms of fulfilment, achieving, gaining, getting rich, inwardly or outwardly, in terms of avoidance, in terms of `the more'. And when you see all that, and put it away, then the feeling, which we have so far called desire, has a totally different meaning, has it not?
Then you can see a beautiful car, a lovely house, a lovely dress without any reaction of wanting, identifying.
You know the whole social approach to existence in which you have been brought up, educated since childhood; all the ideation, the search for fulfilment, that you must be better than the next man and so on. When you see the whole content of this conflict, and when it has fallen away from you from within, dropped from your hand, then is desire that which it previously was?
….. if you could leave desire alone, either to wither away - just leave it alone - that is the very essence of a mind which is not in conflict.

Huguette: "In understanding desire, doesn’t one also understand effort, which you and Dan are now touching upon?"

Let it Be

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Tue, 10 Dec 2019 #84
Thumb_kinfonet_avatar Clive Elwell New Zealand 5551 posts in this forum Offline

Dan McDermott wrote:
And we were a part of it up to a certain point and then the questioning began in earnest.

Well, I don't know if one has to be particularly questioning in order to see what is going on in the world, all the destructive trends, environmental devastation, violence, the obscuration of facts, corruption, movement of refugees .....

I was listening to someone yesterday - just an 'ordinary person' in his workplace - doing the climate change denial scene - trotting out all the denial arguments that have been refuted over and over again by scientists. I was thinking, how such false facts have sunk into human consciousness. I guess we tend to believe what we want to believe ie what seems on the surface to offer personal security. This is corruption. And then I was reading no matter WHAT President Trump does or says, his hard core supporters will not waver in their approval and admiration of him - a large number of voters. This is also corruption.

Why won't people change their perspectives, and respond to the FACTS?

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Wed, 11 Dec 2019 #85
Thumb_kinfonet_avatar Clive Elwell New Zealand 5551 posts in this forum Offline

Tom Paine wrote:
DO see that when I desire something or other I have to make an effort to get it and then there's all the conflict that comes from that..

Tom, I was going make this post before I read your mail. It is very much concerned with the mechanism of desire.

I have been puzzling over what seems a very basic question:

The mind forms images. I am thinking in particular of images of ‘me’ in some different circumstances, some different state. It may very immediate and trivial, like an image of my having a cup of coffee, it may be something I plan to do next week, meet someone, buy something, write something ...... Or it may even be some images of me in several years’ time. All these images are commonly known as “the future”, although they are only creations of the mind. But they do play a crucial part in the process of desire, don’t they?

Do such images form outside of the desire mechanism? That needs looking at.

So a mental picture forms of “me” in some circumstances, in some situation, some scene. Why doesn’t it end there? After all, thoughts and feelings are ending all the time. Why doesn’t the image just fade away? If it did there would be no problem. But usually I find it doesn’t. The image ‘demands expression’, there is a strong pull for image to try to become ‘real’, to actualise, isn’t there? It is as if there is some pressure, compulsion even, to HAVE that cup of coffee, to pick up the phone. If one doesn’t “give into” the image, the desire, as the saying is, there is a feeling of incompleteness. Until one does give into the urge that the image has created, the mind keeps returning to it. There is no peace.

And if one does make that coffee, that phone call, do some task, then immediately the mind creates another image, another desire, so still there is no peace.

To relate this to your post, Tom, does it take effort for an image to actualise itself? I suppose that depends on the nature of the image, the desire, but at times it feels that it takes more effort NOT to actualise the image. But ah! I see that to resist desire is still desire.

But to return to my main point, I don’t understand why the mind/body has this compulsion to ‘make images actual’. What is the nature of the urge? And does the mind have to (try to) actualise the image? And just what is this “me” that is at the centre of all images? I am sure at this point the issue of attention comes in, but I have to leave this for the moment.

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Wed, 11 Dec 2019 #86
Thumb_donna_and_jim_fb_bw Tom Paine United States 3103 posts in this forum Offline

To relate this to your post, Tom, does it take effort for an image to actualise itself? I suppose that depends on the nature of the image, the desire

I don’t know for sure, but I was thinking of the young guy who has a strong desire to be a great baseball player or guitar player. Surely there’s a lot of effort involved in trying to realize those goals. Not saying it’s wrong but only that it might lead to a lot of confusion and conflict when someone or something thwarts my desire. OK the desire for a chocolate cupcake is probably benign...unless I have an obesity problem. If I have a strong desire for that new BMW sports car I saw in a magazine ad, surely there may be a huge effort involved in obtaining it if I can’t afford the price. I may have to work long hours or take a second job to save up the extra cash I need. Then I quarrel with my wife if she wants to spend the money on remodeling the kitchen. Then there’s the desire to have a date with my beautiful classmate in college. I make efforts to get her to like me or to talk her into going out on a date. I make effort to improve my wardrobe or appearance. Then there’s the young lady who desires a certain appearance and makes huge effort to style her hair...to shop for the right clothes...to lose weight. I don’t know if I’m getting to the essence hereof the point I was looking into or not. You asked some good questions in your above post, Clive. Hopefully I’ll get the time to return to them later.

Let it Be

This post was last updated by Tom Paine Wed, 11 Dec 2019.

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Wed, 11 Dec 2019 #87
Thumb_donna_and_jim_fb_bw Tom Paine United States 3103 posts in this forum Offline

Clive: But to return to my main point, I don’t understand why the mind/body has this compulsion to ‘make images actual’. What is the nature of the urge?

Isn’t it to escape some inner conflict or suffering, conscious or unconscious ? And I feel lost and confused....I gain a sense of purpose by striving to achieve in art or sports ...or seeking the perfect mate. I escape my nervous tension with a cigarette or a beer

Let it Be

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Wed, 11 Dec 2019 #88
Thumb_donna_and_jim_fb_bw Tom Paine United States 3103 posts in this forum Offline

Since the subject of desire has come up recently I thought I’d share this excerpt from a talk from 1980....4th public talk, Ojai. I will probably start a new thread on this topic as it’s such a major factor in our lives.

“So we are asking whether this pattern of existence in which the brain has established itself, seeking security, because that is the primary need for the brain, to be completely secure; whether that security is in an illusion, or in some fanciful idea, or some romantic concept, or in an image, spiritual, religious, and all that kind of thing, or the image that you have about your wife, or your husband, or your boy friend, or girl friend, or boy friend, and all that business. So the brain is always trying to find security because it is only then that it can function somewhat skilfully. This pattern has been put together by desire; first by thought, by desire, through attachment, through greed, and though it is caught in fear it seems incapable of escaping from that, or overcoming that, or being free from it. If you will kindly examine these three things together; that is, desire, though we examined together yesterday and in the previous talks, the whole movement of thought; desire, greed, attachment, fear. That's the pattern in which we are caught. And is it possible to break this pattern? Please enquire together with the speaker. That is, let's think over the matter together. Not that I am explaining and you are accepting, or you are rejecting and so on, but that is the problem that confronts us.

Desire has created so many problems, both sexual, various forms of objects to which desire drives, and desire to achieve success, desire to be better than somebody and so on and so on. This whole competitive existence of human beings. Perhaps competition is destroying the world - super powers, and so on, the importance given to success, to fulfilment, to achievement and so on. So we have to examine together the nature of desire. We are not saying you must suppress or fulfil desire, or evade, or overcome, but we are examining the whole momentum, the movement of desire. We are following each other?

Religions, that is the institutionalised acceptance of some dogmas, rituals, images and so on, those religions have said, desire must be suppressed: in order to serve God you must come without any desire. I don't know if you have gone into it. We needn't go into that matter now. But we are not saying we must do that, we are examining. If we can understand the nature and the structure of desire, not verbally or intellectually, but actually, factually, then perhaps desire has its proper place. But now desire is so all consuming - instant fulfilment of desire, whether it is in meditation, whether it is in taking coffee, or whether going somewhere or other, it must be fulfilled, it must be acted upon instantly. Restraint is looked down upon, is even denied. But we are saying before we do anything about desire, whether it is right or wrong, whether it is noble or ignoble, whether it has a proper place in society and so on and so on, we must understand the nature of it. Right, sirs? Are we following each other? Good!”

Let it Be

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Thu, 12 Dec 2019 #89
Thumb_kinfonet_avatar Clive Elwell New Zealand 5551 posts in this forum Offline

Another Extract form Steven Harrison's "The question to life's answers"

Questioner:
Some teachers talk about ego as a path, rather than as pathology. You’re really saying that ego is pathology.

SH:
No, I’m saying that the attempt to fix the ego is pathological. I’d say the attempt to do anything with it is pathological. This is where the language of doing nothing comes in. Can we simply look at what it is without attempting to fix it? And does that in some way change our relationship to the so-called ego? Because once I’ve got an ego and am trying to fix it, I’ve simply slathered layer after layer of concepts onto something that we’re not even sure exists.

What if I do the opposite? What if I do nothing about his thing called the ego? Let’s say I’m an arrogant guy. I’m prone to anger, I’m a lousy communicator, and I’m tense all the time. I can try to fix that through any number of techniques, or I can do absolutely nothing about it. What if that is the entirety of the universe – my anger, my tension, my lack of communication? What happens then? What happens if that’s all there is? Does that fundamentally change the space in which I can work with my own experience?

Questioner: As you describe it, it sounds frightening to me.

SH:
It’s terrifying! We don’t have an escape route. And the whole process-oriented world is about an escape route. It’s not about dealing with ourselves. It’s about not facing ourselves by creating time, by creating process. If I can sit another retreat, or go to another seminar, or read another book, then I’ll be able to fix everything. Of course it never works. We just get farther and farther away from the truth.

Questioner:
And the fixing of it isn’t really fixing it at all. In fact, it’s creating the “problem” that appears to need fixing.

SH:
Exactly. This is the whole Alice-in-Wonderland world that psychology and spirituality have created. – pg 93-95

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Thu, 19 Dec 2019 #90
Thumb_kinfonet_avatar Clive Elwell New Zealand 5551 posts in this forum Offline

I have finished "The question to life's answers" and have taken up another book by Steven Harrison, called "Doing Nothing". I find this book even more profound that the first. This is what he has to say on death and immortality:

Death is not at the end of our lives. Death is current. It is now.

Death comes in the passing away of thought, in the dissolution of self. Death is the very essence of life, it is not different than life.

There is no place that you can find, no point, no view that is not dying the moment you find it.

There is no birth that does not already contain death as its expression.

There is no death which does not bring about the new.

Do we list to cling to what is dying, or nurture what is new?

In the moment we die, in each moment we die, what is new is waiting to express.

From the vantage of life, which is continuous, an interrupted by the flow of form coming into being and passing away, there is no death. There is only life which is the timeless expression of its own innate nature.

When our view is from the vantage of that timeless expression, we, too, are timeless, immortal. We have died in that view. We are no longer separate.

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