Peter: I have noticed a tendency for many people to merely want to clip on a bit of Actualism to their Spiritualism, and no doubt this tendency will grow in the coming years. Already many western spiritual teachers have watered down Eastern philosophy and religion to try and make it more ordinary and less supercilious and, as Actual Freedom increasingly gains a foothold, those very same Spiritualists will deliberately distort it and try and absorb it into their teachings. This is the very reason that we have set up The Actual Freedom Trust, simply in order that there will be at least one original untainted source of Actualism and Actual Freedom which people can use as a touchstone in a world renowned for duplicity and self-deception. Thus it is possible, as with any new discovery, to see two streams operating.
There will be pioneers who are daring enough to take Actualism on and have the courage to go all the way and those who will directly gain some benefit from adopting some of the common sense and down-to-earth practicality of Actualism in their everyday lives.
Yet another bonus will be a gradual infiltration of the knowledge of, and advantages of, a third alternative viewpoint to materialism and spiritualism and this will result in a slow generational change to human attitudes and outlooks.
I have been twigged to write a map, guide or summary outline of the path to Actual Freedom to date, for it seems an appropriate time given the current interest that seems to be building on the Actual Freedom Mailing List.
So the first stage of our map, the beginning if you like, would be the discovery of Actualism and deciding what to do with the discovery. History shows that most people will blindly rile against anything new, particularly something that is so radically new and iconoclastic as Actualism. Some will adopt a sit-on-the-fence position, waiting for others to take the leap and see what happens to them, and a few will boldly jump in. This third category of people will be those who have some particular motivating factor that causes them to push on, despite their fears and trepidations. Some of these possible reasons we have written about – a burning discontent with life as it is, suspicion and doubt about the traditional spiritual ‘freedom’ based on personal experience, a vivid memory of a pure consciousness experience or a particular life experience that gives them the drive to make the search for freedom, peace and happiness the primary goal in life.
Given the three basic options at the start, – objecting, waiting or jumping in – this map or summary outline only becomes relevant for those wanting to journey on the path to Actual Freedom. As we have already stated, the path has a definable mid stage of Virtual Freedom and it is useful to review what we know about the experiences of those who have so far reached this stage. A variety of incentives to begin on the path have become obvious: for Richard the horror of war and a significant PCE, for me the death of my son and the memory of a PCE, for Vineeto the lure of living with someone in genuine peace, harmony and equity, and for another a glimpse of actual intimacy in a PCE and a stubborn refusal to settle for second best. For those considering following the third alternative, a common thread is the need to establish a prima facie case that what is on offer makes sense, that it is intelligent, that it is based on facts, that it has integrity and that it means what it says.
Having acknowledged that there is a prima facie case for beginning on the path, one then needs to begin – to dare to push off from the familiar and safe and begin the process of the moment to moment investigation of one’s own psyche. The way to begin is simply to make becoming actually happy and harmless the primary aim in one’s life.
It is the acknowledging of aggression in oneself that is the key to wanting to change irrevocably. If one only wants happiness for oneself then that is insufficient motive or intent to get stuck into the business of irrevocably changing oneself. It needs an altruistic motive rather than the mere self-gratification of being happy and that motive is to be actually peaceful – to do no harm to one’s fellow human beings, as in not instinctually feeling aggression towards others, not instinctually feeling sorrow for others, not being blindly driven to nurture others and not being blindly driven to desire power over others.
The initial investigations will depend on one’s predilections, the particular issues that are most pressing or most obvious to tackle. What I did was accept the challenge of being able to live with another human being in total, peace, harmony and equity and use the success gained to give me the confidence to tackle other issues. At the same time, I was ready and eager to question the spiritual path for I was already suss about its sincerity and effectiveness in bringing peace on earth. For Vineeto, her challenging of the spiritual path only came when she had garnered sufficient confidence from tackling relationship, authority and gender issues.
What is clear is that at some stage, fairly early on the path, if one has travelled the traditional spiritual path that an about-turn has to occur for what we are talking of is 180 degrees opposite to the spiritual viewpoint of life. For those who have travelled the spiritual path, this business of turning around and backtracking is often too daunting a prospect or too much of a blow to their spiritual pride to even consider – spiritual seekers are usually too humble to admit they could be wrong! Whenever the ‘penny drops’ about spirit-uality and one begins to be able to look at the spiritual world with clear eyes, it then becomes increasingly clear how deeply the spiritual viewpoint pervades all human thinking and how it is, apart from malice and sorrow, the predominant aspect of the Human Condition. This tackling of the spiritual viewpoint is closely analogous to dismantling the most substantial component of one’s social identity, for the morals, ethics and values that we have been instilled with are essentially spiritual values based on the concept of a battle betwixt good and evil in the world. Unless this overarching spiritual belief is tackled in oneself the real business of taking a clear-eyed look at the instinctual passions in operation in one’s own psyche is not possible.
All spiritual ideals, beliefs and notions must be investigated and eradicated in order to become actually free of the Human Condition.
So, an essential part of this first stage to a Virtual Freedom is to take on board the fact that Actualism has nothing at all to do with Spiritualism and much of the initial work of an Actualist involves reading, contemplating and understanding this fact. Unless there is a crack in the door, a doubting of one’s spiritual belief, then it is impossible to even begin the real life-changing process that Actualism is.
The first impediment to freedom, peace and happiness to be tackled is always one’s own social identity. Once there is a sufficient dent in this identity, it is possible to see the underlying passions that fuel the spiritual search – the desire for immortality fuelled by the fear of death, the desire for omnipotentency fuelled by the passion for power, etc. The very action of turning around from the spiritual and facing the other direction – see diagram of ‘180 Degrees Opposite’ – means that one begins the process of demolishing one’s social identity and for those who have travelled the Eastern spiritual path this means one’s spiritual identity, usually layered on top of the underlying identity instilled in childhood and refined in early adulthood. The process of investigating and demolishing the social identity is also evident in the two-stage process that happens with each and every investigation of a deep-seated emotion from then on, on the path to Actual Freedom.
It is vitally important to understand that two stages happen with every investigation of a particular deep seated emotion over a period of time, such as aggression, sex, love, sorrow, authority, desire, etc. – first the social identity is dismantled, only then are the raw instinctual passions underneath are exposed. I know, I keep flogging this point but it is the only way to go deep sea diving into one’s own psyche. The initial tendency is to go straight into trying to look at the instinctual passions, but this is a disingenuous short-cut that can only lead to snorkelling around on the surface. This two-stage investigation is the crucial difference between the spiritual version of denial, selective awareness and remaining a passive watcher of life and the Actualist’s application of sincerity, all-encompassing awareness and becoming an active participant in this moment of being alive.
Let’s look at an example of the process and use a crude emotion such as anger as an example. The first stage is to become aware of anger in operation, and ‘How am I experiencing this moment of being alive’ is the key to experiencing one’s own anger in operation. Now the ‘guardian at the gate’ of this investigation is our social identity – we have been taught to deny anger, to repress anger or to be cunning about our anger, for an overt expression of anger is not acceptable in family, school or society at large. In order to investigate anger it is important to look at my beliefs, morals and ethical values about the emotion so that I am able to stop the automatic reaction of denying and repressing the emotion. By neither repressing nor expressing I can then get the bugger by the throat and have a good look at it whenever it pops up. It is important to be able to look at the emotion in action, to feel it, to experience it ‘live’ as it where, which is where ‘How am I experiencing this moment of being alive?’ comes in. It is vital to recognize the more subtle forms of anger as well, be they irritation, impatience, frustration, annoyance, etc. Having unveiled and discovered the symptom – the emotion or feeling preventing me from being happy or harmless at this moment – it is then vital to identify the cause. Sometimes I may miss the trigger of the event, the conversation, or situation that caused the emotional reaction, but with a bit of effort, diligence and practice I can invariably trace it back to its trigger. This aspect of the investigation is as equally important as discovering and acknowledging that I have the emotion running, for one has to link cause and effect to have a complete understanding of how one’s psyche operates. Once I have found the situation that triggered the emotion I can then question why I got upset, what is the underlying belief, which part of my identity has been insulted or threatened. Having completed the investigation the aim then is to get back to being happy and harmless as quickly as possible, armed with a useful understanding that enables you to nip the feeling in the bud next time before it completely takes you over.
These thorough investigations will result in realizations, momentous discoveries, which, if combined with one’s pure intent, will inevitably lead to substantial change. Once a deep investigation reveals the facts of a situation, the realization and acknowledgment of these facts results in change, ‘I’ have no choice in the matter. It is not ‘me’ changing myself but change is the inevitable result of the realization. For a spiritualist, realizations are the be all and end all, the knowledge gained remains intellectual, usually translated into feelings, any experiences are savoured, and ‘I’ claim the credit, becoming even more strengthened and aggrandized. On the spiritual path, realizations lead to a change in consciousness – i.e. a change in how ‘I’ think and feel about life as-it-is. These spiritually conditioned realizations, or insights, about the ‘real world’ invariably lead to affective experiences, which in turn can lead to temporary altered states of consciousness or, for those rare few who lose all grip on reality, a permanent ASC, aka Enlightenment.
For an Actualist, realizations are simply a serendipitous by-product of their investigations into their ‘self’. It is clear that it is ‘I’ who have realizations or startling insights into the Human Condition in general, and about ‘my’ feelings, emotions and behaviour in particular. These realizations, if combined with an uncorrupted objective in life, can lead to irrevocable change and it is actual change that an Actualist seeks – not just imagining or feeling that one has changed.
This difference, yet again, points to the fact that the spiritual process is diametrically opposite to the process of becoming actually free of the Human Condition.
The discoveries of an Actualist will usually be accompanied by a feeling of ‘how could have I been so stupid not to have seen this before? How could I possibly have believed that for all those years? There is an acknowledgement of success firmly based on the tangible evidence of becoming more happy and more harmless confirmed by the increasing ease of interactions with one’s fellow human beings.
The reference to feeling a fool relates to the issue of pride, which is perhaps the most significant feeling that inhibits those who have trod the spiritual path. It is a shattering blow to one’s pride to admit that ‘I’ am neither happy nor harmless, to admit that ‘my’ relationships are not perfect and to admit that ‘my’ dearly-beloved spiritual beliefs are based on nothing more than puerile Bronze Age superstition and ignorance. At some point, this understanding must come as a shattering realization, a crushing blow to one’s pride, or else one is kidding oneself, indulging in ‘self’-deceptive cleverness or treating Actualism as a clip on, a philosophy, a theory, a concept, an ideal, a belief.
It is at this point that one begins to turn around and to really begin to question one’s spiritual roots and programming. I would suggest that such is the strength of this realization that the whole spiritual world is a vast illusionary construct, and such is the turmoil created, that a break-through or glimpse of the actual world – a significant PCE – can occur at, or near, this time.
The cute thing that what one initially discovers in all investigations at this stage is that it is one’s social identity that is most usually the preliminary cause, the trigger for emotions and feelings. So many of our automatic emotional reactions relate to the beliefs, morals and ethics that make up the outer layer of who I think and feel I am. If I am an environmentalist I will be angry at polluters, if I am a Rajneeshee I will be angry at Christians, if I am a Christian I will be angry at Muslims, if I am a woman I will be angry at men, if I am a man I will be angry at women, if I am a socialist I will be angry at capitalists, if I am angry I will then feel guilty, if I feel guilty ...
Someone recently described this discovery of one’s social identity when he came across a few of the male components of his social identity that had triggered an emotional response in him, and another correspondent has written about a loss of meaning as he dipped into the social values that have been instilled in him that were meant to give his life meaning and direction. There is a veritable smorgasbord of investigation to be had in one’s own social identity and once you get the taste for it, it is so delicious to hoe into the meal. This is the joy of becoming free of one’s social identity, bit by bit – fabulous fun. Although some issues may be more pertinent and more difficult for some people than others, all human beings are instilled with remarkably similar social conditionings, with only slight cultural, religious and gender differences. As such, much useful information and guidance can be gleaned from The Actual Freedom Trust website in the writings selected-by-topic sections.
Once sufficient of this dismantling of one’s social identity has been done, it is then possible to begin to experience the instinctual passions deeply without acting on them – once the ‘lid is off’ then I can have a good look around inside – neither repressing nor expressing – and begin to experience ‘me’ at the very core of my being. The only way it is possible to undergo a significant change in life is by experiencing something deeply and understanding the experience fully. I don’t know about a map at this stage – it’s more like throwing away the water wings and snorkel, strapping on a scuba tank, plunging into one’s own psyche and rummaging around the bottom, looking under all the rocks in order to see what the bottom really looks like. The spiritual practice of transcending one’s undesirable emotions means that this type of in-depth investigation is deliberately avoided and in real-world therapy any investigations are restricted by morals and ethics to a mere paddling around on the surface.
At some stage on the path to Virtual Freedom there is a feeling of being torn apart – a desperate holding on to the past and an unwillingness to commit oneself fully to letting go of the safe and familiar. It is as though one is trying to be part of two worlds or as though one is two identities – ‘who’ you have been taught to be and ‘who’ you are becoming – a committed Actualist. I say ‘who’ deliberately, for this is not the prelude to self-immolation, but the last of the substantial doubts that one has. It seems as though everybody has one particular issue that keeps them holding on – one issue of their social identity that they desperately hold on to and stubbornly refuse to relinquish. The most extraordinary thing about Actualism is that at any stage one can say ‘enough is enough’, I will go no further. This turning back is less of an issue after reaching the Virtual Freedom stage, yet it is possible even then.
Just as an aside, if at any point you do decide to stop and go no further, your life will be better for having replaced at least some of your instilled morals and ethics with down-to-earth common sense and consideration for others. This is diametrically opposite to stopping on the spiritual path – one encumbers oneself with an additional, spiritual, set of morals and ethics and also feels guilty for having failed to fulfil the expectations and desires of one’s Master.
The other fascinating aspect of the path to Actual Freedom and its well-documented method is that it is also an effective method to evoke an altered state of consciousness and this is where integrity and pure intent are vital to avoid the insidious, traditional and instinctual trap of Enlightenment. It is mandatory to have had a significant pure consciousness experience before one reaches Virtual Freedom for one needs a measure, a standard, by which one can assess one’s progress. Many of the realizations that come on the way to dismantling one’s social identity are in the form of understandings or realizations of the blindingly obvious – flashes of stunning clarity, unimpeded by the usual self-centred emotional perspective. As these become more frequent, a pure consciousness experience is inevitable at some stage – an experience where one directly experiences the purity and perfection of the actual world, temporarily free of any identity or self whatsoever. With this experience or experiences as one’s touchstone or guide one then has a firm goal, an unswerving aim – which is unabashedly to live this experience 24 hrs. a day, every day and one also has a clear understanding that this is only possible in a permanent ‘self’-less state.
In this ongoing process of ‘self’-investigation and subsequent demolishing of one’s social identity, one is continually ‘raising the bar’ to allow more of the perfection and purity of the actual world to become apparent and obvious in one’s life. This process, if undertaken with a sincere intent, will inevitably lead to a state of Virtual Freedom. In a virtual freedom from malice and sorrow, one goes to bed at night-time having had a 99% perfect day and knowing tomorrow will be equally perfect. In Virtual Freedom the immediate and the actual becomes one’s focus as this is, after all, the only moment I can experience of being alive. This is not to deny that Actual Freedom is not the eventual goal – but for that to happen ‘I’ have to ‘self’-immolate and this process of investigation and change is the practical, down-to-earth method to do it.
Virtual Freedom is a readily obtainable, realistic goal available for anyone – and is an essential step on the path to Actual Freedom. Unless one is willing to contemplate a virtual freedom of being happy and harmless, free of malice and sorrow, 99% of the time – then forget the whole business. If someone is not willing to make this level of ‘self’-sacrifice, then any interest in an Actual Freedom would remain a purely cerebral exercise – a useless self-deception. Virtual Freedom is available for everyone, and anyone, who has the sincere intent to be happy and harmless.
Exactly like any journey, on the wide and wondrous path to Actual Freedom, there is an initial burst of frantic activity, excitement, doubt, anticipation and trepidation as one finds one has mulled over the pros and cons, made the decision, said goodbye to all that is familiar, and set off. The initial period is full of excitement and adventure as you leave your past life behind. All that was familiar, safe and comfortable eventually falls away and, depending on the strength of the emotional ties to the past, one either turns back or presses forward to the point of no return. The point of no return can be equated with letting go of the past completely, that last emotional bonds to the real world and the spiritual world. One is then inextricably on one’s own, for to go back is then seemingly impossible (although practically possible, for this is only a journey into one’s own psyche, after all) and to go forward is to go into unknown territory (although others have travelled this path, it is my psyche and therefore I am the only one who can make my journey).
This past the half-way point is a most fascinating period for one finds oneself literally on one’s own, without the security of a social identity of any substance and adrift from the familiar security of being able to mindlessly indulge in malice, or wallow in sorrow. One finds oneself seemingly at odds with the world and its citizens for one has left the accustomed ways of coping, or avoiding, behind. It is possible to pass through periods of stark reality where nothing has any meaning and all is experienced as grey and dull. Boredom, meaninglessness, pointlessness and similar feelings are often encountered and this is where a continual memory of the pure consciousness experience is vital, for that becomes one’s single pointed goal in life while crossing what can be experienced and felt to be a desert completely devoid of usual meaning and familiar emotional experiences. Traditional and accustomed relationships and ways of thinking and feeling are all broken apart and there seems to be no way of putting anything back together again. One realizes that the path is essentially a demolition job – the very aim is to demolish, piece by piece, ‘who’ you have been taught to be and ‘who’ blind nature has programmed you to be.
A variety of weird experiences are possible for one’s traditional defences, ways of coping or ways of avoiding, are no longer available. It is often as though one is naked in the world and it takes nerves of steel to not raise one’s traditional defences but to stay with any feelings of vulnerability and fear. Each time one dares to fully lower one’s guard and experience the consequences as only temporary and unsustainable instinctual emotional reactions, one gains more confidence to keep going, no matter what. Deep experiences of the raw instinctual passions can be safely had at this stage, be they the tender passions of nurture and desire or the savage passions of fear and aggression. One has an experiential understanding of the raw instinctual passions in operation and glimpses of both the instinctual savage ‘me’ and the instinctual good ‘me’. One is also able to fully understand the instinctual pull of self-aggrandizement while experiencing the tender passions, thereby ensuring that any altered state of consciousness can be safely avoided thereafter. For an Actualist any weird psychic experiences are but by-products of the process, whereas for a Spiritualist they offer True meaning. All of the secrets of one’s own instinctual passions and how they operate can be examined, free of any feelings of guilt or shame or the temptations of becoming a pious saviour of mankind. The instinctual passions are common to and identical in all human beings, no matter what gender, race or culture and as such there are no short cuts, individual nuances or avoidances possible at this stage. Some passions may be experienced as stronger and therefore more obvious due to particular life experiences but both the savage and tender instinctual passions must be investigated, thoroughly understood and directly experienced in action at a gut level for the process of elimination to be effective.
This latter stage of Virtual Freedom is epitomized by the increasingly free operation of common sense and the diminishing of all of the instinctual passions, both the savage and the tender. One’s awareness becomes increasingly bare of the common neurosis of ‘self’-centred thinking, and apperception is able to freely operate unimpeded by the usual input of chemicals that produce the instinctual passions and emotional reactions. One’s physical senses are freed of the instinctual burden of being constantly on-guard and more and more sensual delight becomes abundantly apparent. Having none of the instinctual drives operating and traditional values and meanings to hang on to can be quite discerning, to say the least, and a learning or accustomizing period is necessary for this new way of living.
As the immensity of Actual Freedom becomes apparent it becomes obvious that what one is doing is preparing the ground for the final step – reducing the gap and ‘testing the water’, so to speak, as one lives increasingly naked of any psychic protection. Another stunning aspect of this period is that one is clearly able to see the psychic world in operation – the usual game of psychic attack and defence, blame and forgiveness, remorse and revenge, etc. that is constantly played out between all human beings. All sorts of explorations can be made into this world depending upon one’s predilections. One only needs to be wary of the dangers of falling into an altered state of consciousness, and this is where pure intent firmly based on the pure consciousness experience serves as a lifeline back to actuality and common sense.
As the remaining explorations and understandings peter out, one finds oneself in a state where everything begins to become calm and comfortable, as though a great storm has passed. A surety and easiness firmly based on actuality, a growing delight at being here and a joy at being alive is palpably present in one’s life whereas – if one can remember – confusion, belligerence and resentment once prevailed. Being happy and harmless is a salubrious state – it becomes increasingly effortless, requiring no ‘me’ to be continuously on guard, checking and controlling, lest malice rears its ugly head or sorrow insidiously seeps in. Realizing this fact leads to a gay abandon, a tangible loosening of the controls, and one is able to crank up a free and uninhibited YES to being here in this moment in time, not only fully involved in doing what is happening but also being aware of, and delighting in, the doing of it. This is most definitely not a feeling of gratitude maintained in order to overcome the fundamental human resentment but it is a palpable sensual delight in being in the business of being a flesh and blood body. This abandoning of control is also accompanied by a cessation of the incessant need to make sense of each and every situation or event. Increasingly all emotional memories of the past fade and disappear and any anxieties or worries about future events fall flat for want of any emotional input. The memory of ‘who’ one was at the beginning of the path to freedom also withers, as does the memory of the obvious fears and trepidations that were there at the start of the process. More and more, an unbelievable perfection and purity is obvious in this actual magical world and it becomes glaringly obvious that the ghostly remains of ‘my’ psyche will eventually collapse.
As with any authentic journey, the path to Actual Freedom does have a definitive end – there is no on-going journey for ‘me’. ‘Who’ I think and feel I am will be no more at the end point of the journey. ‘He’ and his memories, his worries, his beliefs, his morals, his passions, his fears will be no more. There will be no psychic or psychological entity in this flesh and blood body, for what I am has always been here and ‘he’ was but a walk-in, an instinctual distinct identity implanted by blind nature to do no more than ensure that this body did whatever was necessary to continue the species – no matter what, no matter how. Fear and aggression was ‘his’ genetically implanted animal instinctual nature, on top of which ‘he’ was instilled with a family and tribal social identity lest ‘he’ would run amok.
And yet, despite this double burden, ‘he’ never could quite buckle down and be ‘who’ he was fated to be, a normal instinct-ridden human being. Not content with real-world life, and having too much integrity to strut the spiritual stage, ‘he’ serendipitously came across the brand new third alternative – and you know the rest of ‘his’ story because ‘he’ wrote a journal about that time.
Long Awaited News:
The process of Actualism happens in two consecutive stages – firstly a period of deliberate active dismantling of one’s social and instinctual identity such that you diminish this identity to the point where you are virtually free of malice and sorrow. This reasonable stable plateau is known as Virtual Freedom, whereby one is happy and harmless for 99.9% of the time. Virtual Freedom, with the bulk of the active work having largely been done, is a period of becoming accustomed to living in increasingly long periods of near self’-lessness. In this stage, apart from a few remaining issues and investigations, one’s social and instinctual identity, or ‘self’ – who I think and feel I am – has increasingly nothing left to do but to get out of the road. Eventually the ‘self’ becomes so thin and ethereal as to be understood, recognized and eventually unequivocally experienced as being non-substantial, i.e. non-actual.
The permanent experiencing of ‘self’-lessness is to be actually free of malice and sorrow – you then have arrived, sans ‘self’, permanently and irrevocably in the actual world.
In the period leading up to Virtual Freedom I had many realizations and many PCEs in what was a fairly tumultuous period. It was as though my familiar normal/ spiritual world was collapsing and any pure consciousness experiences literally felt as though I was entering another world, which the actual world is compared to ‘my’ reality. These PCE offer a glimpse of the human condition while standing outside of it, as it where, and the trick is to not only experience the delight of the actual world but also take a clear-eyed look at the appalling malice and debilitating sorrow of the human condition. Thus informed, I always had something to do when entering back into ‘my’ reality.
The next period of Virtual Freedom was largely concerned with removing any of these residual feelings that create the gulf and that stand in the way of a permanent pure experience of the actual world. In Virtual Freedom pure consciousness experiences are more like glimpses of normality, as in ‘I have always been here, it’s just that this ‘person’ keeps getting in the way’.
In both these stages I always knew that the PCEs that crept up on me were temporary experiences and that eventually they would imperceptibly fade away and some neurosis or feeling would creep in, no matter how subtle or how fleeting.
However, twice during this period of Virtual Freedom, I have had experiences that were more explicit in nature. In these PCEs I clearly and startlingly realized that in order for me, this body, to permanently experience actuality, ‘me’, this identity, would have to die or disappear entirely.
The experience I recently wrote about was of the same ilk, I simply walked through the sliding door one morning out on to our balcony and had a glimpse of how it would be if there was no way back to being normal. I remember thinking – ‘this is how it must have been for Richard when his whole psychological and psychic identity collapsed and he had no way back’. I understood then the nature of his angst at being the first human on the planet to have no psychological and psychic identity whatsoever – to have no ‘self’ dwelling inside his body.
The latest experience on our balcony was very brief and the automatic fear and subsequent thrill took my breath away for a second or two before the realization of the nature of the experience kicked in. The fear quickly passed as I began to muse on the consequences of what I had experienced. From this experience I realized that what I needed to do was to slip out from control, now that I had sufficient practical experience of the utter safety, purity and perfection of being here, sans identity, in this actual physical tangible world.
Since then more often than not, whenever I ask myself ‘how am I experiencing this moment of being alive?’ I do not get an ‘I’ - answer for there is no ‘I’ operating in this moment. A similar thing would occur whenever someone asked me, as a greeting, ‘How are you?’ – I could muster no ‘I’-answer for the answer was always that I was excellent as a near ‘self’-less experience is always ambrosial. Another thing that has happened since this experience is that I have no interest in, or desire for, realizations any more. It is clear to me that the time for realizations is over and I am now ready for the real thing – the final ending of any ‘self’ centred thoughts or inner conversations and the final ending of the entire affective faculty, i.e. the end of the chemical flows that are automatically experienced as instinctual passions.
It is a thrilling and enthralling time, yet utterly and exquisitely normal at the same time.
Well, that’s as far as it goes, from me, for now.
This summary should be treated as a map or guide for those who have a good understanding of the writings about Actual Freedom, have made some initial investigations by actively applying the method and have had some realizations resulting in significant behavioural changes that can be confirmed by others. This guide should also be taken as work in progress, for no doubt others will contribute their experiences and fill in some areas with slightly different experiences, but the core steps are solid and factual, tested and found to work by a handful of Actualists.
Now doubt, there will be those who read this summary and will try and take the short-cut by imagining they are arriving before they even begin the journey of leaving the real world and spiritual world behind. What a silly thing to do, for they will only be fooling themselves, and ... they will miss the journey of a lifetime!
For those who are undertaking this journey it is important to treat this ‘map’ as a guide only and not as a set-in-concrete, tick-that-off-my list, set of rules and regulations. Always one’s own pure consciousness experiences act as one’s own touchstone and goal and the very sensate actuality of these experiences, combined with one’s own sincere intent and integrity combine to form one’s own compass. Ultimately it is your life, it is your happiness and harmlessness that is of concern to you, only you know where you are at now and what needs to be done next. There is no such thing as failure when one is firmly established on the path to Actual Freedom, for every exploration gives one invaluable, potentially life-changing, insights into one’s own psyche. By the very nature of this daring solo journey it is vitally important to acknowledge one’s successes and literally pat oneself on the back when any change for the better is discernable.
As Richard noted recently, integrity is the beginning, the middle and the end on the wide and wondrous path to Actual Freedom.
Freedom from the Human Condition – Happy and Harmless