Please note that Peter’s correspondence below was written by the feeling-being ‘Peter’ while ‘he’ lived in a pragmatic (methodological), still-in-control/same-way-of-being Virtual Freedom before becoming actually free.

Peter’s Correspondence on the Actual Freedom List

with Correspondent No 23

Topics covered

What I would do about the war in Palestine, think globally but act locally and getting on with the business of changing myself * self-esteem and integrity * directly experience the sensibility of what Richard was saying, your feeling ‘kind of schizophrenic’, no new identity created in the process of actualism but ‘what’ you are incrementally emerges * becoming aware of normally suppressed denied or supposedly transcended feelings, feeling of guilt is found in every culture, the male-female divide, the ‘world problem’ is the result of some 6 billion ‘selfs’ each battling it out with each other in a ‘self’-centred battle for survival, ‘the government’ is made up of fellow human beings who are invariably inflicted with the human condition * the subject of politics, how much passion and belief dominates political discussion and decision-making and how little common sense, I focussed my attention almost exclusively on local-to-me issues rather than distant-to-me global issues * TV coverage of the first anniversary of the bombing of the World Trade Centre, such acts of mass murder are not an aberration, a school assignment to comment on the rights and wrongs of the US attacking Iraq, the so-called ‘good’ feelings and opinions * Animism the most universally accepted of all religions, thinking about time, spiritualists made a virtue out of not wanting to be here, recent debates about ‘should the US force a regime-change in Iraq?’, focus on my own anger and my own sadness rather than be obsessed with anger and sadness of others, dictators have an abysmal record of reeking havoc on their own populations and that of other countries, Encyclopaedia Britannica on World War II * law and order is ultimately maintained by armed police, persistence and perseverance is the only way to overcome cognitive dissonance, the lure of self- aggrandizement *  origins of religious/ spiritual beliefs and the whole notion of Good and Evil



PETER: You wrote commenting on something I wrote to Gary –

[Peter to Gary]: Someone asked me the other day what I would do about the war in Palestine.

I replied that if I lived in the area, the first thing I would do was stop being a Jew or a Muslim because it is obvious that religious fervour fuels much of the hatred on both sides. The second thing I would do was stop being an Israelii or a Palestinian, because nationalistic fervour and territorial instincts fuel much of the hatred on both sides. And finally, I would leave the area, vote with my feet, abandon ship, get out, be a traitor to the cause. Peter to Gary, 7.6.2002


[Peter]: [someone asked me the other day what I would do about the war in Palestine.] [endquote].

It seems to me that the question would read: Peter what would you do about the war in Palestine? From what I hear there is no request for the condition that you’d be living there.

PETER: And yet surely it is obvious that the only thing I can do something about is the things I can do something about. It therefore follows that, because I don’t live in Palestine, I had to preface my reply with ‘if I lived in the area’.

You may be familiar with the cliché ‘Think globally but act locally’. A sincere interpretation would mean that if one is concerned about wars in general, or the war in Palestine in particular, then one should act locally. And there is no place more local to act than to cease making war with the human beings one comes in direct contact with, be they family, friends, workmates or whatever. Need I say, this involves ceasing being angry, annoyed, peeved, resentful, blameful and so on.

It took me a long time to fully comprehend that getting emotionally involved in someone else’s problems and/or contriving imaginary solutions to others’ problems was merely a convenient way of avoiding the responsibility of looking at, and doing something about, my own malice and my own sorrow. A large part of the business of actualism involves breaking this ingrained habit.

RESPONDENT: As I know that you are not to keen at ‘taking a walk in someone else’s imagination/fantasy’. I’m actually surprised that you went that far, yet as you were seriously replying, vis:

[Peter]: [The person who asked seemed to think I was somehow cheating by not offering a solution, not taking sides, not apportioning blame and so on, but he completely missed the point of my answer] [endquote].

I wonder could it be possible that you had missed the ‘point’ of his/her question?

PETER: No. I was well aware that the questioner was busy with being emotionally involved in someone else’s problems and then contriving imaginary solutions to these problems. I simply responded by offering a solution that I found worked for me – I stopped believing in all forms of religion, spiritualism and mysticism and became an atheist and I stopped believing I belonged to a patch of dirt or a group of people and became an autonomous citizen of the world.

By doing so, I found this took much of the wind out of my own malicious and sorrowful feelings – which is precisely why I related the anecdote to Gary in the first place.

RESPONDENT: Given that we could say that you were not fantazising or imagining but running a ‘what if?’ scenario the like we have done on previous occasions with the famous ‘No 38 query’ and I dare say that that definitely offered some food for thought. Also given that Richard’s initiative to make the *AF*-process available (as I recall more or less encouraged to do so by you and Vineeto) through the internet has enabled anyone who has access to the internet can ‘land upon ‘the AF-site. It comes to mind that ‘we’, the people on this list, (not to say that we are some collective/sect and so on) yet are in a rather special position, that is to say on this list we can discuss the ins and outs of Actualism. ^note imo. making AF available through the internet is in fact having skipped a step in the sequence of media with regard to their accessibility^

Although for most of us (on this list) it’s fairly clear that our shared features (i.e. being endowed with a similar genetically encoded survival program and in roughly basically similar programming i.e. in my case, programming via genetics, parents, school, peers, Christianity and Rajneeshism. In your case, programming via genetics, parents, school, peers, Christianity and Rajneeshism, as I understand.) Yet our lifestyles may considerably differ. In fact I dare say they do differ.

Given that some of us have a regular job, some don’t, some us are living with a partner, some of us don’t. On top of that our geographic locations are fairly different hence we all more or less have needed to adapt to the ‘dominating cultural and political’ system of our country. So… As to –

[Peter]: [I replied that if I lived in the area, the first thing I would do was stop being a Jew or Muslim because it is obvious that religious fervour fuels much of the hatred on both sides.] [endquote].

Have you considered what it would imply to be a Jew or a Muslim for that matter? Because as for Christianity might be considered an offspring or say modification of Christianity, the Muslim culture is entirely different hence the God Allah needs indeed to be viewed as completely different God then Jehovah. From that I conclude that your solution:

[Peter]: [the first thing I would do was stop being a Jew or Muslim] [endquote].

is bypassing the complexity of this enormous problem.

PETER: Yep. Remarkably effective, hey. It is such a simple thing to do – to totally bypass ‘the complexity of this enormous problem’ – to find, instigate and follow through with a do-it-yourself, by yourself, for yourself, solution. Of course, from a real-world point of view anyone who is not passionately supporting ‘good’ causes is seen to be a traitor, and from a spiritual point of view anyone who is not passionately supporting the ‘Creator’ is seen to be evil.

Only by stopping being a believer – and stopping being emotionally involved in someone else’s problems and then contriving imaginary solutions to these problems – are you able to become attentive to the fact that peace on earth already exists and always has.

RESPONDENT: So … If I may suggest a different ‘what if?’ scenario, perhaps a bit more realistic, though of course not much more then the imaginary situation that you’d be a Palestinian with the whole package of Muslim programming. Peter (as an actualist) what would you do about the war in Palestine? The imaginary condition is that you would have access to the world media ie. like the Dalai Lama has. So ... You can be on CNN for one hour and give your solution as to the Israeli /Palestinian conflict. Your words will be translated into Hebrew and Arabic or whatever is needed. Arafat and Sharon will be listening in and also Bush will hear you. Would you take the opportunity?

PETER: No. It is quite clear that people have to be vitally interested in peace on earth for them to even consider eliminating their own malice and sorrow. Peace on earth is a personal responsibility – to expect others to do it, or wait for others to do it, whilst doing nothing about your own malice and sorrow is but a cop-out.

RESPONDENT: Might I say this is a not even an unrealistic ‘what if?’ scenario as it would only take one person, ie. Wolf Blitzer from CNN, who would be willing to give it a shot, having become ‘interested’ in actualism as solution to this ongoing insanity of warfare. Consider it is an altruistic action.

PETER: I do understand ‘where you are coming from’, if I can use that phrase. When I first came across actualism I was enthused by its ramifications in bringing an end to the horrendous conflicts between human beings that plague this verdant planet. I wrote my Journal specifically to tell others that actualism worked, I subscribed to two spiritual mailing lists in order to tell others about actualism and even sent copies of my Journal to people I thought would be interested. I fully expected others to readily see the sense in actualism and be eager to try it for themselves.

In hindsight, part of this enthusiasm was to spread the message, part was to find security in numbers and part was a passion for peace on earth. The ensuing years have demonstrated that only a small percentage of those who thus far read anything of actualism are at all interested in peace on earth, so obsessed are most people with the spiritual promise of an other-worldly peace, after physical death.

This has meant that increasingly my focus changed from wanting, or waiting for, others to change and getting on with the business of changing myself. It does take a good deal of stubborn effort and constant awareness to come to the understanding that the only person that one can change, and indeed needs to change, is oneself.

If I can summarize, it is vital for success to continuously remember that actualism is a method of bringing an end to your own malice and sorrow – not that of others.


PETER: You said recently,

[Respondent]: People with so called ‘pumped up’ self-esteem are generally more reluctant to look at the ‘bad’ feelings than people with a low aka bad self-esteem.

Also people with ‘high self esteem’ may be likely to try to talk people with suspected low self-esteem into their category, hence encourage them to ‘look away’ from the bad feelings hence contributing to sustaining a kind of society which is at large is supporting fundamentally self-centred egotistic behaviour.

Me myself being an example of a person with an exceptional low self-esteem have tried many ways to improve that self-esteem, only to find that all this esteem stuff incredibility superficial and is basically merely rearranging the deck-chairs on the Titanic. [endquote].

I like what you said here. The problem I always had with self-esteem is that esteem is a societal value. Esteem is a judgement or estimation of one’s worth that ultimately relies on the fickle opinions and attitudes of others. As I dug into the matter of self-esteem I found that living my life dependant upon the esteem of others was rather like being a puppet with others pulling my strings.

What really pulled the rug out from esteem was when I discovered that the greatly esteemed Masters were all hypocrites in that they were ‘normal’ in their off-stage life – they all got angry and they all got sad, they were all seduced by the need for power over others and they all relied upon others’ adulation in order to maintain their Self-esteem.

I found, and still find, integrity to be streets ahead of self-esteem because integrity is solely my own business based on my own assessment and is not reliant on the fickle judgement of others.

Integrity is an undercurrent in my life that keeps me from settling for second best.


PETER: I notice you ended your last post with ‘any comments are heartily welcomed’ so I’ll take up the invitation to respond as many of your comments correspond with my experiences of the actualism method.

RESPONDENT: A shortcut to actual freedom may well be the consideration that my body likewise everybody (all fellow beings so to speak) is made out of the same stuff the universe is made of.

I must say to have spent some considerable time in entertaining myself with wondering where that ‘stuff’ comes from however, I’ve come to find that this is not a very sensible question, as it took me to theories like the big BANG or the source, or some creator having created everything; it’s much easier to see (as it is obvious that is here right now) that it has always been there and will always be so.

However the question ‘WHAT’ is this stuff the universe is made of takes me to a naive feeling of wondering, coming to think of this, it is a rather magical process how this stuff becomes shaped into the human/animal form, on the other hand not much more mysteriously then how it becomes a grain of sand or a drop of water. See ... ... it’s simple: this body is the universe sensately experiencing itself no identity is needed, be it a thinking or a feeling one.

Having come to be a little more careful with pressing the sent button.

The above I wrote a few days ago and indeed as I’d finished writing it and reread it I was quite satisfied and more or less eager to share it, nevertheless I withheld it thinking; ‘if I re-read next time and it I still will find it worthy then I may post it.’ It appeared to be sensible to have taken some time, because how fragile is the experience of living in a Virtual Freedom. It’s all so obvious when writing this in the comfort of my own room yet, indeed these last couple of days I found myself dragged into a swamp of feelings when I had to do some necessary socializing with people in the ‘real’ world.

PETER: I can well relate to what you are saying as I had many such realizations in the early stages of actualism. I used to keep a little notebook and write them down and they would often come tumbling one after the other as I realized what Richard was saying made sense and sometimes I could even directly experience the sensibility by myself. The realizations were as though a clear light went on in my head as opposed to the spiritual insights I had in the past which felt like a tug on my heartstrings. These realizations felt more like a crack in the door was opening up to the wonders and delights of the physical world I was actually living in.

I remember being particularly fascinated by the physical process as to how every human being gets to be here in this physical world – a sperm fertilizing an egg triggering the growth of the foetus in a woman’s womb. I also remember being fascinated by the sight of my hand and seeing it for the first time as the claw of an animal. I remember being astounded at the non-sense of the fantasies of there being an ‘outside’ to this infinite universe or that there could be a beginning or an end to this eternal universe.

I won’t go on, as you seem to be discovering for yourself that a down-to-earth reflective contemplation on matters such as these can lead to wonder and amazement at the actuality of being here – of being fully involved in doing this business we call being alive, right here, right now, in the world as-it-is.

RESPONDENT: The sucking force of the human condition of malice and sorrow is exceedingly strong, as I find time after time. Apparently ‘me’ having been in recess seems to very cleverly having been hiding only to come back on stage as if never been away. It seems to only take one moment of being of ‘guard’ and back I find myself, ‘fighting’ the grim survival battle just like everybody. The main purpose of that game that everybody seems to have is to pretend oneself to feel reasonable happy as opposed to feel more or less miserable either deluding the others or oneself or both parties.

The main rule of that game seems to be to find something or someone to blame for ‘wrongness’ in the world or one’s private life. The price is high to pay when I fail to be attentive as to my own reactive behaviour of not managing to nip a feeling in the bud. However, having learnt to ask the sensible question as to the trigger of where I lost it so to speak I’m able to trace those feelings back to the event where it started.

After all these years I still find it hard to see ‘injustice’ happening yet it was surprising to feel how willing I was to do it (justice) as suddenly blind rage manifested itself. Indeed I could picture myself with a sten-gun and just wiping out the alleged to be guilty ones. I was even more surprised as to the feeling of ‘rightness’ of this action and even a sense of feeling good was involved with it. Nevertheless I soon began to question the sensibility as to the problem solving quality of such behaviour to then quickly come to the conclusion, that this simply showed, that I’m still not free of the human condition.

Then something interesting happened I ‘settled’ for less and only ‘choose’ to call the alleged (yet not even visible) guilty ones a bunch of mother F*ckers thus feeling that justice had been done. Funnily I kept up with that opinion for quite some time. It was only when I read and contemplated the fragment of Vineeto’s latest post –

[Vineeto]: If ‘what is felt be true’, be it a belief, moral, ethic, or psittacism, is not examined and replaced by fact and common sense and if the particular feeling itself is not investigated and traced to its source, the same-same feeling will arise again and again in similar situations because the identity of the ‘feeler’ itself has not been dismantled and thus remains unchanged. Vineeto to No 33, 13.8.2002

Suddenly it started to dawn that I had taken this feeling as a fact and then I realized how reluctant I was to take responsibility for how miserable I felt this moment which was far from happy and harmless.

I later discovered this ‘holding on’ to this frozen anger had stressed my body and made me wake up with a headache and pain in the neck this stubbornness to take my ‘opinion’ for a fact had me fixed in a grumpy mood more or less with an overall deathlike feeling as I completely had forgotten about the main gaol of becoming happy and harmless permanently and undistorted. Now ‘my opinion’ began to reveal itself as a tendency not only to blame but also to want to punish. Obviously ultimately the way I ‘intent’ to punish is also the way I expect punishment to be for myself, which apparently is rather severe.

Also I began to see that pretending that this anger was just a feeling and therefore comfortable could be dismissed as an ‘I’ that was only inferred as ‘I’ was not the way to go, as ‘I’ manifested itself very real felt as an identity (the punisher). Also it dawned when I reflected that there even had been a second identity the ‘I’ as a moderator so to speak the one that somehow made an attempt to ‘keep’ the punisher within reasonable boundaries. Looking more deeply into it, it becomes clear that the ‘punisher’ indeed only went in recess and passed over the job to the ‘resenter’, which was keeping this anger more or less frozen.

I am well aware that the above story sounds kind of schizophrenic but more and more it seems that in dismantling the social identity one very well may come to find that it consists of many ‘I’s and each one may claim to be the real one though none of them of course is actual. My findings now are that it seems that in proceeding with the AF-process some new sort of identity is being created; the one who has some overview with the ability to backtrack, reflect and contemplate on all those sub-identities of which the inferred social/spiritual identity consists.

Thus the sub-identities seem to ‘frame’ the instinctual passions and I have not yet found how to eliminate those passions.

PETER: Just a comment on your feeling ‘kind of schizophrenic’ and your feeling that ‘in proceeding with the AF-process some new sort of identity is being created’. I can relate to what you are saying and I have even written of the experience –

[Peter]: ... ‘I also reached a stage where I felt torn apart, as though there were two of me inside. One who believed in the spiritual world – the world of spirits – and was hanging on to it for dear life, and the other me who was simply this body with its physical senses, a delicious calmness and a sense of wellbeing that had replaced the neurosis and swirling roller-coaster of emotions. I was split apart, and it felt like past and future – the person I had been and the ‘whatever I was becoming’ – as layers were falling off me.

But despite all the facts I was still reluctant to completely let go of God. And the reason was becoming glaringly obvious to me, not just a theoretical understanding. I knew what it meant by now. Believing in God, or some Thing, or some Energy meant that I had always abdicated the responsibility of how I was as a human being and therefore would never take the necessary steps to fix myself up. I trusted or hoped that someone or something else would do it one day. If there was no God, then the responsibility was mine. Nobody can fix me up but me. Of course!

The feeling of being a split person then became apparent and useful. I knew that the trouble lay in my spiritual identity – that bundle of beliefs that I was born with, and that was passed on to me by other equally malicious and sorrowful members of the tribe. Handed on well-meaningly of course, but this passing-on is just a perpetuation of the ancient and primitive ways. Realising this, I was able to firmly identify this entity as not me, but an intruder. I always tried to avoid Richard’s astute comment that ‘a mature adult is really lost, lonely, frightened and very, very cunning’. But once I could identify the source of all the trouble, this ‘mature adult’ entity inside me, I knew it would only be a matter of time before it eventually disappeared. I had the ‘bugger by the throat’ was how I put it at the time. It became a process of re-wiring my brain – untangling the beliefs to replace the crazed and muddled circuitry with facts and common sense. ‘Silly and sensible’ replaced ‘right and wrong’, ‘good and bad’. An ease and calmness began to pervade everything, as I no longer had to keep up an effort to maintain appearances or fulfil any expectations of society or God. I remember being so relieved at not having to maintain a spiritual identity any more – it had been such a load for so long! Now there was simply no room for God in my life, no need for any authority of any sort – in short no need to believe in anything at all – no need to ‘fervently wish something to be true’, despite the facts to the contrary.’ Peter’s Journal, God

Also, with the benefit of hindsight, Vineeto and I produced a diagram that may be useful to consider. In it you will see that there is no new identity created in the process of actualism but ‘what’ you are incrementally emerges as it is freed from the dominance of ‘who’ you think and feel you are.

The only thing you have to be wary of on the path to freedom is the powerful impulse to become yet another saviour of mankind and this is precisely why a sincere intent plays such a crucial role in actualism.

RESPONDENT: I am glad that I have been supplied with a working theory yet nobody but Richard has become actual free like him so, we are still in the stage of experimenting, even Vineeto and Peter (some 4/5 years on the job now) may have identities that might have gone in recess.

PETER: The stage I really liked was when the working theory of actualism brought practical results in reducing the amount of time I wasted in feeling malicious or sorrowful, which in turn meant I was able to crank up my joie de vie and delight in being here. Then I knew by experience that the working theory worked as a practical down-to-earth method in eliminating my malice and sorrow.

If a working theory can’t be put into practice and doesn’t produce tangible results then it is, by definition, an unworkable theory.

RESPONDENT: And not until it is actually proven that Actual Freedom is possible for more then one person, Richards case is still unique and so it could be that he is a ‘freak’ of nature (no insult intended) as ‘his being catapulted into an Actual Freedom’ happened spontaneously.

PETER: Again, I can speak from experience. When I first came across Richard there were several other people who were interested in actualism at the time but they dropped out for one reason or another. This left me on my own, as it were, and this made me realize that it didn’t matter what others did or didn’t do – my freedom was my business entirely, it wasn’t dependant on others becoming free and nor was anyone else stopping me from becoming free.

The other thing I realized early on in discussion with Richard was that while the event of becoming free from the human condition in toto ‘happened spontaneously’, the event itself was the result of years of attentiveness combined with a persistent and stubborn investigation of the nature of the human condition. The actualism method of an ongoing attentiveness to this moment of being alive can be summarized in one sentence – ‘How am I experiencing this moment of being alive?’ but sorting out why you are wasting this moment thinking and feeling you are ‘who’ you are rather than being ‘what’ you are does take time and effort.

But then again, that is what you have written about in your post when you said –

[Respondent]: The sucking force of the human condition of malice and sorrow is exceedingly strong, as I find time after time. [endquote].

I particularly liked your descriptions of your awareness of your feelings and your understanding of how they are programmed to operate. To put it into computer terminology, you have to understand the default setting of your social and instinctual programming in order to be able to change the default settings. And, as you also seem to be discovering, feelings of malice, anger, righteousness, blame, resentment and the like are the obvious firsts to look at for anyone who wants to be both happy and harmless.

Nice to chat to you, but it’s now time to get back to the drawing board, as architects are prone to say.


RESPONDENT: Though I have mentioned in previous posts that I like to stay clear from politics, yet I can not deny that when taking notice of the overall condition of this planet certain things come into focus and trigger feelings especially in the layer of gender conditioning.

PETER: Yes. The point of actualism is not to deny the feelings that come to the surface when taking notice of the world as-it-is and people as-they-are. Only by becoming aware of these normally suppressed, denied or supposedly transcended feelings, can one break through the protective shell of self-righteousness that most spiritual seekers have cloaked themselves in and begin a clear-eyed study of one’s own psyche in action.

RESPONDENT: Seeing that, and also considering that evaluation of spirituality on this forum is a bit being overemphasized; i.e. the Dalai Lama has been fairly exposed among other so-called spiritual leaders, I think it might be learnfull to also take a look at leaders of a ‘seemingly’ different category.

PETER: I see it as a good sign that you think ‘that evaluation of spirituality on this forum is a bit being overemphasized’ because it can be an indication that you are starting to look at the whole picture of the human condition rather than accept the common good-spiritual/bad-materialistic division that has plagued human thinking and feeling since its first inception thousands of years ago.

RESPONDENT: Keeping in mind that often the corrupting factor in a sect mainly are money and/or power, also keeping in mind that the number of followers/ members/ supporters/ sponsors (granted that they are militant) of a sect largely determines their potential destructive impact iow, the poorer the followers the less harmful to their environment, the richer the more dangerous.

PETER: This does beg the question as to whether people living in poverty are less harmful to their environment including their fellow human beings than the rich. From my visits to poor countries and from my reading I see no evidence of this. There is currently far less pollution in wealthier countries than in poor countries as well as marginally less overt crime and corruption, although the latter seems entirely due to the increased likelihood of detection and punishment.

RESPONDENT: Also as the current issue seems to be ‘guilt’, this being fairly acknowledged by me as to be a general, not a major issue of the human condition as it concerns equally the male and the female aspects of being here as a being in 2002.

PETER: And the feeling of guilt is found in every culture as well as it is fundamental to all religious/spiritual belief. Everyone is instilled with a social conscience, be they male or female, white or black, Christian or Hindu, Rajneeshee or Krishnamurtiite. And beneath this social conscience, lies a more fundamental guilt, the guilt that arises from being conscious of one’s underlying instinctual animal passions – the compulsive urges of fear, aggression, nurture and desire.

RESPONDENT: Most of my life I have put the ‘blame’ on the male part of humanity for making such a mess of this planet, hence my relationship with men always carried subtly traces of either finding them guilty or feeling myself guilty but because of my ‘awareness’ that women were better I always found myself a little better so less guilty.

Vineeto put it very well the other day when she wrote –

[Vineeto]: ‘Quite a few men have adopted the female-generated belief that women are naturally more caring whilst men are instinctually more aggressive.’ Vineeto to No 23, 24.8.2002

I fell for that one for quite a while and it was reinforced by my immersion in Eastern spiritualism with its Ying-Yang belief. The male-female divide runs deep since most of the old spirit forces and Gods were either male or female, most of the societal structures were divisively either male of female, most of the responsibilities and tasks were split into either male or female.

But it’s a fascinating time to be alive since in an increasing number of societies these old divides are crumbling and we can clearly see that nearly all of the supposed differences between male and female are founded on belief and not on fact.

RESPONDENT: From this feeling better I never was able to ‘compete’ like so-called real man do and found the way they generally treated women repulsive.

PETER: The school playground taught me this very early on but I was only emboldened to try something different when I discovered over the years that ‘becoming less male and more feminine’ did nothing to bridge the divide between the sexes. To attempt to switch sides in the game or continually try to walk a middle path only means you are still a player in the game.

RESPONDENT: When coming up home link G:\ACTUAL FREEDOM\VINEETO.HTM after having typed in guilt I came to read about Vineeto’s observation; vis:

[Vineeto]: ‘Male solutions fail because they are male. Give women the power and they will solve the world’s problems!’ [endquote]


[Vineeto]: ‘Women claimed to be better than men but would still fight exactly the same petty power battles between each other as men did. And if lesbianism was supposed to be the solution, I saw that it still had jealousy, competition, dependency and all the other problems of heterosexual relationships.’ (full quotes see A Bit of Vineeto)

I shan’t comment on Vineeto’s observations except to say that living with a woman who has dared to investigate and eliminate her social and instinctual female programming is grand indeed. But of course, being born a man, your job is to investigate and eliminate your male social and instinctual programming and by doing so you get to understand the whole picture – both gender’s programming is inexorably intertwined in that it both creates and reinforces separate gender identities and, as such, sustains the gender divide.

RESPONDENT: As for solving the world problem I have left the idealist mode, only when living with the facts as they are I can understand my current situation from a social perspective so to speak mainly concerning the question: [what is my relationship to the fellow-being that is closest this moment?] i.e. when coming into a bar, restaurant.

PETER: From the perspective of a PCE, the ‘world problem’ is seen as being totally ‘self’-imposed, the result of some 6 billion ‘selfs’ each battling it out with each other in a grim instinctual ‘self’-centred battle for survival. Everyone has had at least one PCE in their lifetime – a brief experience of the utter peacefulness, perfection and purity of the actual world whereupon ‘me’, ‘my’ worries and ‘my’ ‘self’-centred feelings have disappear, as if by magic.

However, most of these pure experiences only serve as fuel to the ‘self’-centredness of the spiritual/religious beliefs that permeate the human condition. Either during a PCE or soon after, there comes the conviction that ‘I’ am a pure, noble and all-knowing being and everyone else is guilty, pitiable and ignorant. As a consequence, feelings of knowing the solutions to the world’s problems or even of being the next Saviour of Mankind are par for the course for those who selfishly claim the pure consciousness experience as their own.

This issue was in my face constantly in my initial explorations into the human condition – in the first few months, the more I discovered about how the human condition operated, the more I was tempted to want to change others. It required constant effort and attentiveness to remind myself that I was in this business solely to change me and not to change others.

RESPONDENT: Taking in account that in ordinary daily-life, once stepped out of a spiritual ivory tower, the overall political ‘climate’ is playing a fair part and even more the local political climate does so.

PETER: Speaking personally, once I got rid of the majority of my feelings of malice and sorrow, I found that the political views and machinations of others rarely impeded my being happy and harmless. I found the first thing to focus on was becoming happy and harmless and then, when any issue stubbornly hung around, I would dig in a little deeper.

That is why I appreciated coming across Lomborg’s book because I was able to read it largely bereft of an emotional ‘self’-centred reaction – I could see that he was simply attempting to compile a fact-based exposé of the political climate and popular belief that surrounds the Environmental battle.

RESPONDENT: As it is obvious that the one intertwines significantly with the other one may fairly find a starting point for affirmation that we are in the same boat when it comes down to being at the mercy of administrators; i.e. the affection of a lifestyle by government decisions.

PETER: Again Vineeto has recently made pertinent comment about the persistent belief that humans are inevitably at the mercy of an authority of some sort – a belief that only breeds resentment, which inevitably leads to aggression, be it overt or covert.

In the real world this belief serves as a convenient excuse for me never being able to be happy nor harmless. I am continually unhappy and upset because the government never does what I would do, never makes the right decisions, never does all the right things, never does enough, should always do more, and so on. Continuously objecting to the current political climate is a bit like objecting to the meteorological climate – a lifelong exercise in frustration, a Tantalus-ian task. Once you come to understand that ‘the government’ is made up of fellow human beings who are invariably inflicted with the human condition, you may find yourself being amazed at how much is accomplished and how well the system works instead of being frustrated that what ‘they’ do is not ‘perfect’.

When I became an actualist I became concerned with the ‘climate’, or psychic vibes, I carried around with me – I became aware of and concerned with how my moods affected others. I started to notice how my being annoyed or frustrated or angry or sad or melancholic affected those around me and I started to notice that I couldn’t be really happy or if my ‘climate’ affected others. In fact, I found that the only way to be genuinely happy was to put being harmless ahead of being happy and the first step in this task was to stop blaming other people or organizations for either making me unhappy or, in some way or other, preventing me from being unhappy.

RESPONDENT: The below is an excerpt from a CNN’s question of the day. Is Saudi Arabia ‘with us or against us’ in the war on terrorism? I have added some notes (and colorizing) for purpose of clarity and to give some food for thought. Feel free for yourself to establish the degree of in/exclusiveness that the above expression ‘us’ is evoking when reading this question. I think it’s time for us to call the name of the Game not by wielding any power but by thinking of sensible solutions and use that to step forward to our fellow-beings I do not agree with the title of the script and I vote for ‘Actual Freedom today’ and that is the name of the game for me.

PETER: I’ll pass on thinking of sensible solutions to national conflicts and religious problems and stepping forward to change the script of others.

Whilst I can relate to your enthusiasm, you may have noticed on this very list that it is impossible to change the script of others unless they have the desire and intent to change their script themselves. If they want to change – if they want to become free from the human condition or even from some particular aspects of it – then it is possible to pass on tips, hints, personal experience and so on, but to expect or demand others to change only leads to battle and frustration.

Perhaps a little of my Journal is relevant as it relates to the struggles I went through with this very issue –

[Peter]: ... ‘About this time I started to come to grips with an undercurrent of feelings that had been welling up in me as I got further along this path to freedom. As I began to increasingly understand the full extent of what Richard had discovered, I had begun quite cunningly to plot my role in the Movement that would sweep the world. Images of money and fame began to subtly occur – and sometimes not so subtly. I would see myself travelling and talking to halls full of people, spreading the message! Yes, it was good old power and authority again – the attraction of the Glamour, Glory and Glitz.

No wonder the Enlightened Ones are seduced and then trapped by it! It seemed to me an instinctual grab for power by my psyche, which rightly felt threatened with elimination. I also had to admit to myself that power and authority was a definite attraction in my desire for Enlightenment – a sort of spiritual version of ‘Money for nothing and your chicks for free’.

It was further brought home to me in my situation with Vineeto, as I would try to tell her where she was wrong and ram it down her throat. Finally I saw that it was up to her to do what she wanted to do with her life, and that I had no power over her. Now I would not want it any other way; it would not be perfect otherwise. A similar thing happened with friends when I tried to inspire them; they usually felt attacked and no wonder – this path is anathema to the ‘self’. To see power and authority in myself and to have seen them in the Enlightened Ones was to prove the critical point in the process of beginning to eliminate them in me.

No longer would I be seduced down that spiritual path towards power and glory. I had reached the point where the spiritual path and the path to actual freedom radically diverge and go 180 degrees in opposite directions. There is an apparent similarity at first glance in that both identify the ‘self’ as the problem. One, the traditional, goes to God, glory, power and authority; the other goes to actual freedom, which I had glimpsed in peak experiences and which was becoming more and more obvious and apparent in my life. In my experience the other difference is crucial – one works, the other doesn’t. I was becoming increasingly happy and harmless, and therefore different from other people, who remained firmly entrenched in sorrow or were still trying the traditional paths as a remedy. They were still searching while I was busy arriving.

However, what a freedom to see others as fellow human beings who choose to do what they want with their lives, and not as people I had to save. This path to freedom was proving to contain no power or authority. But then again I had only to observe Richard and how he was – and, of course, I did continuously. I could see that the path to actual freedom was eminently sensible, practical, workable yet utterly magical. And that Enlightenment has had its day; it’s finished, redundant, obsolete, archaic, primitive, harmful and silly! Peter’s Journal, God

I’ve snipped the bit you posted about Hamas as, although I found it interesting, I don’t profess to know enough about the facts of the situation in the Middle East to make comment. In a similar vein, I recently followed a local issue about upgrading a sewerage plant but I eventually came to the realization that I would have to research the issue well beyond what was presented by the various political factions and in the press in order to get to the facts of the matter. In the end, I gave up having an opinion one way or another because no matter what option is adopted, the situation will be an improvement on what exists now.

In spite of the divisiveness inherent in the human condition, human beings are remarkably inventive in discovering and, in due course, implementing workable solutions to practical problems.


PETER: I have been thinking a bit about the subject of politics lately following my reply to your last post. I have had occasion to watch a few of the recent debates about ‘should the US force a regime-change in Iraq?’ on television and was reminded at how far I had come in becoming free of the morals, beliefs, values and opinions I passionately held a few years ago. I was able to listen to the discussions without emotionally siding with the doves against the hawks, without automatically believing those I wanted to believe and distrusting those who I felt were being deceitful, without liking the so-called good guys and hating the so-called bad guys, without feeling angry or becoming depressed.

What became evident as I watched the discussions was how much passion and belief dominates political discussion and decision-making and how little common sense – a down-to-earth consideration of the facts of the matter – is evident in the discussions. As I watched, I was again reminded that the opinions most people have about these issues is based on emotionally-biased information presented by journalists, politicians, dissidents, protestors, fundamentalists and the like who thrive on presenting, provoking and promoting disparate viewpoints and spend little time and effort, if any, in researching and verifying the facts of the issue.

I was also reminded in watching the discussions that the only way I had managed the degree of freedom from malice and sorrow I have is because every time I observed the human condition in action I was attentive to my own feelings of malice and sorrow as they arose. Every time I found myself being angry or upset by a particular issue, I would ask myself why? I would then look at my own beliefs about the issue and by doing so become aware of my investment in holding on to my beliefs. This process does take time and effort because while it is easy to take the lazy path of siding with like-minded believers, it is quite another matter to dare to question the need to have any belief whatsoever.

As I thought about the thread of our last conversation, I didn’t want to leave you with the impression that I have ignored or turned away from real-world problems, issues and conflicts as is common in spiritual circles. Far from it. I have spent a good deal of time watching the news and current affair discussions over the last years, not to seek solutions to real world problems but as an invaluable aid to investigating and eliminating my own beliefs, which I discovered triggered much of my feelings of malice and sorrow. There a wealth of information to be found about the human condition by getting one’s head out of the clouds, and out of the sand, and it is vital to do so in order to clearly see the role that both social and instinctual programming has in sustaining and maintaining conflict and misery within the human species.

Only by caring enough to want a global peace on earth can anyone dare to go beyond the currently-fashionable, but utterly selfish, desire for a personal feeling of ‘inner peace’ and do the painstaking, oft difficult, but ultimately thrilling, work of incrementally dismantling one’s own social and instinctual identity.

Another point that I would like to make is that in my early years of being an actualist I focussed my attention almost exclusively on local-to-me issues rather than distant-to-me global issues. By this I mean I was busy with being attentive to how I was with the fellow human beings immediate to me, be it the person I was living with or the people I had contact with at work or whilst going about my daily life. I focussed my entire efforts upon becoming as happy and as harmless as possible in daily life rather than becoming distracted by being concerned about what other people I didn’t even know, or had no contact with, chose to believe and feel to be important in their lives. Only by doing this was I able to eliminate my own animosity and anguish to the point where it was then possible to have a clear-eyed understanding of the complexities and perversities of the human condition as it plays out on a global scale.

This focus on how I am experiencing this moment of being alive is what makes actualism diametrically opposite both to spiritual practice and normal life in the real world. ‘Normal’ people focus their attention on what others do wrong in order have someone to blame. Spiritualists focus their awareness on the ‘badness’ or ‘wrongness’ of the beliefs, feelings, anxieties and actions of others, thereby developing a new and superior identity – a real ‘me’ or a higher self. By the very nature of their focus, they aggrandize their feelings and beliefs and, by doing so, become increasingly more dissociated from the world as-it-is and people as-they-are.

I remember at one stage this seemed to me a selfish thing to do – to focus entirely on my own experiencing – and I have written about this stage in my journal (Peter’s Journal, Time). But what drove me on was the success I was having in using the actualism method to become happy and harmless – and it was success in becoming increasingly harmless that was most revealing and rewarding. As I remember it, the early days of using the actualism method were rather difficult because I was doing something that was quite unnatural – trying to focus my attention on how I was experiencing this moment of being alive rather than focussing my attention on how other people were living their lives and continuously being concerned with guessing what they were feeling about me.

I hope this helps to throw a bit more light on my response to your previous post. The business of actualism is brand new and, as such, getting the hang of the method does take a good deal of persistence to break with old habits. This is why I like to take the opportunity to write to those who are interested in the ‘how to’ of becoming happy and harmless – I assume the experience I have had in using the method could well be of use to those who have similar aspirations.


PETER: A bit more about the subject of politics that has come to mind in the last week –

I have recently been watching the television coverage of the first anniversary of the bombing of the World Trade Centre towers in New York and the Pentagon in Washington. I was particularly struck by how well documented these acts of carnage were whereas our knowledge and understanding of most other such acts of violence throughout history are based on written accounts, bland official records, sketches and paintings, black and white photographs and official war films or, more recently, brief film clips on TV news reports. This has meant that while everybody is familiar with the Nazis’ persecution of the Jews, there is no similar close familiarity with, for example, the Japanese ritual slaughter of Chinese at Nanking, the Stalinist and Maoist systematic murder of tens of millions, or with the Communist genocide in Cambodia. Few deliberate acts of bombing of civilians have been recorded as they happened – the obliteration of whole cities in Europe and Asia in the Second World War was often only recorded from a distance or as piles of rubble, after the act.

I have a somewhat hazy but vivid memory of the very first time I became aware of the sheer horror of what human beings do to each other. I was about 10 years old at the time and my parents had just purchased their first television. I snuck out of bed late at night in order to watch and came across a film showing piles of skeletal corpses in a concentration camp. Whilst I vaguely remember being stunned at seeing this appalling and inexplicable act of evil, I can only assume that I thought that it was an aberration from the past and had nothing to do with me, i.e. the only way I could cope with what I saw was to dissociate from what I saw.

This memory surfaced again when I watched the two planes crashing into the World Trade Centre towers and then seeing both towers collapsing. Nowadays, as an actualist, I know that such acts of mass murder are in fact not an aberration and that dissociating or turning away from such acts means that I am only avoiding the opportunity of investigating my own social conditioning that makes me liable to be complicit to such acts as well becoming aware of my own instinctual passions that are the root cause of such actions.

As I watched the anniversary reports, the Mayor of New York commented in the aftermath of the attacks that he now knew what Londoners had endured for months in the Second World War and he could well have added the names of many other European and Asian cities. In a similar vein, I now know that the Holocaust, although horrific in itself, was not in itself an aberration because the persecution and murder of religious groups and tribal factions has a long history stretching back thousands of years. I also know that persecution and bigotry is inherent to all faiths, be they Western or Eastern. This is so because, by the very nature of all religious and spiritual belief, each faith believes that their particular morality, belief, God, Prophet, Guru or Godman is the only true, right, good and therefore, either implicitly or explicitly, that all other faiths are false, wrong, evil.

But I also know – thanks to Richard’s pioneering discoveries and my own experiential investigations – that tribal and religious conflicts are but the symptoms and the real cause of all human conflict lies where no-one dares to acknowledge, let alone investigate. I know by personal experience that the root cause of the violence, misery and mayhem that human beings continue to inflict upon each other is not the result of some metaphysical Evil force that continually needs to be opposed by the forces of Good but is solely due to the maladroit instinctual survival programming genetically-encoded by blind nature into each and every human being. And I know by experience that this programming can be changed – if one so desires.

There is another event that happened this week that I would also like to relate to you as it relates to the topic at hand and it helped me to throw some light on some of the feelings that have surfaced around the bombing of the WTC towers. I happened to have a chance conversation with a teenager who had been given a school assignment to comment on the rights and wrongs of the US attacking Iraq. As he read out some of the questions he was supposed to address, it became clear to me that whoever had posed the questions had an anti-US bias. What also became clear was that the teenager had very little knowledge of the facts of the situation. He didn’t know anything about the recent history of the Gulf war, of the Iranian-Iraq war, of the brutal regime of Saddam Hussein and the gassing of the Kurds, let alone the long history of conflicts in the region.

It struck me that he, like each and every other child born on the planet, had been inculcated with a particular point of view and opinion about other people, in ignorance of the current and historical facts of the situation. In common with every other child he was being taught – whether by his parents, peers or teachers – not only that there are good and evil people and tribes in the world but specifically who these people and tribes are. In this way, these beliefs then becomes set in concrete for a lifetime, only ever changed in order to remain compliant to the mood swings of society in general or one’s peer group in particular.

All of this I know from my own observations of my own social identity in action – of becoming aware as to how I was gullibly sucked into believing that what I was told and taught to be true by others was fact. Whilst it is obvious that I knew no better as a child, this is not the case nowadays. Nowadays if I catch myself feeling anti-anything feelings, I want to know why. I want to investigate the facts of the situation. I remember at the time of the bombing of the World Trade Centre towers being particularly curious about the amount of anti-US feeling that the event aroused. Many people of all nationalities were expressing the opinion that the US was at fault and that it had ‘got what it deserved’. Often I would hear that ‘it was terrible, but …’

I was reminded of school ground taunts and fights when there was general gloating when someone paid-back someone else for some wrong, and it often made no difference at all whether the wrong was actual or perceived. What I see in the human condition, and have discovered operating in ‘me’ and as ‘me’, is a basic feeling of resentment intrinsic to being a human being. This base-line feeling is what fuels much of the resentment against other individuals, groups, tribes or countries who are seen to be, or who are, more powerful, more wealthy, more fortunate, and so on. Many seek to counteract their feelings of resentment with the antidotal feeling of self-righteousness whereby they aspire to feeling ‘above’ the ‘ignorant’ behaviour of others, whilst many others seek solace in feeling grateful to their own personal protector-God.

I came to understand by scrupulous ‘self’-observation that many of the so-called ‘good’ feelings and opinions I held were based on a socially-inculcated and instinctually-natural feeling of self-righteousness and that this feeling is always predicated on the ‘wrongness’ of others. In my case for example, I believed being a spiritualist was ‘good’ because religion was inherently evil, I believed being a socialist was good because capitalism was inherently evil and I believed being an Environmentalist was good because consumerism was inherently evil. It was only when I became an actualist that I was emboldened to question and set aside these beliefs so that I was able to find out by myself, for myself, the facts of the situation.

I’ve come to understand – by carefully observing my own beliefs, feelings and passions and, most importantly, thinking about them – that the root cause of this intrinsic feeling of resentment is that ‘I’, by my very non-physical nature, am forever cut off from the perfection and purity of the actual physical world. However this very act of observation also means that increasingly I am able to rid myself of the social and instinctual programming that gives substance to ‘me’ as a social and instinctual identity. This deliberate act of elimination in turn means that I am more able to be unconditionally happy and effortlessly harmless, which is also why I am able to report from my own experience that actualism can never be a belief because it only works in practice.

It’s so good to be able to do something about one’s lot in life, to incrementally eradicate one’s own self-centred programming and start to marvel at this astonishing, utterly peerless, universe in action.


RESPONDENT: Prelude: snipped from: (Peter’s Journal, Time,

[Peter]: ‘I learnt from my pure consciousness experiences that by not ‘being’, or becoming, or having come from somewhere, or going somewhere, I, as this body, am safely and firmly located in time. I am never out of time. I am never busy or not busy. I always have enough time because it is right here, this very moment of being alive, doing what is happening now.’ Peter’s Journal, Time

I was very pleased to receive sort of an ‘after ponderer’ as to my proposal to have a closer look at the global situation (as I understand you made an attempt with the ‘Lomborg case’ and somehow used that in the dialogue on this list to see if it is possible to raise the bar of perfection and remove all spiritual elements ie. wishful thinking and replace that with down to earth common sense and clear rational thinking. end prelude}

PETER: My attempts to have a discussion about animism – the most universally accepted of all religions – did seem to meet with a lack of enthusiasm on the list. The reason I investigated the topic was because I found that what Environmentalists were saying sometimes evoked feelings of gloom, guilt, animosity and resentment and I wanted to know why. Having found out why, I was able to tick another item off the list of excuses I had for not feeling felicitous about being here and not being harmless to all of my fellow human beings.

RESPONDENT: We have had extensive discussions about time and likely we will apply that term with a slightly different understanding then as it is being understood by the majority of people. My latest way of going about this subject time is that I find it necessary to take in account that time for most people is not an actuality but rather a concept that is more or less the fuel for the engine of a social/spiritual identity. For an actualist time is most certainly not thinking whereas thinking as well as performing a sequence of actions like preparing a nice breakfast getting dressed a.s.o. yet requires time. In short for a realist, time most often is a source of pressure, hence the flesh-blood-body is carrying a considerable load of stress, whereas for an actualist time basically is to enjoy, thus a source of sensuous pleasure, hence the flesh-blood-body knows how to relax.

PETER: For me, contemplating on the fact that this is the only moment I can actually experience being alive eventually led to the realization that this is the only moment I can actually experience being alive which in turn led me to have a direct experience that this is the only moment I can actually experience being alive. This experience is known as a pure consciousness experience.

There is a lot to be gained from thinking about time – exactly as there is in becoming attentive to how you are experiencing this moment of being alive, this the only moment you can ever experience as an actuality.

RESPONDENT: {Intermezzo: as you know I many a time have attempted to add to a virtual coffeetable atmosphere, not shunning to encourage other readers to somehow join a certain dialogue, hence aiming at a simulation of a conversation between more then two people that might unfold in a friendly atmosphere.

In Vineeto’s response the header of the post: ‘Vineeto’s checklist (litmus test)’ was changed into ‘fellow human beings’ from which I take now

[Vineeto: Whilst I can relate to your ‘‘aspiration’ to create peace on a global level’ you might just have a tiny bit of a problem preventing other people from fighting each other.

Personally I think that to accomplish actual peace for this flesh and blood body is enough of a challenge and is, in fact, all that I can do to contribute to an actual peace on earth.] Vineeto to No 23, 16.9.2002

And offer: I am this body and the rest is illusion.

PETER: If I take what you are saying at face value, I am left wondering how far ‘the rest is illusion’ extends? When you mentioned ‘preparing a nice breakfast, getting dressed a.s.o.’ – is the food you eat in order to sustain ‘you, this body’ also illusionary? Are the clothes you put on ‘you, this body’ illusionary clothes? Is the computer screen you are reading these words on illusionary? Are the fingers tapping on the keys of the keyboard actual, whilst the keys are an illusion? I only ask because tripping off down the path of regarding everything, and everyone else, but ‘you’ – by whatever name you label yourself – as an illusion is to risk becoming utterly and completely ‘self’-centred.

In the latter stage of my spiritual years I had an utterly ‘self’-centred altered state of consciousness – a four-hour experience whereupon ‘I’ was the very centre of a dream-like Universe. It was certainly a blissful and aggrandizing experience – if you don’t want to be here, then being ‘there’ is a great place to be. However, what made me suss about the experience was that not only did the physical world become illusionary, so did all other human beings. It was only when I became a committed actualist and became vitally interested in being here that I came to understand that such ‘self’-centred spiritual experiences are the antithesis of a ‘self’-less pure consciousness experience of the actual physical universe that all mortal flesh and blood bodies have sensually experienced at some stage in their life.

Spiritualists have, since time immemorial, made a virtue out of not wanting to be here. For an actualist, wanting to be here is a prerequisite to becoming interested in how I am experiencing this moment of being here – need I say, the only moment you can actually, as in sensately, experience being here.

RESPONDENT: Adding to that, that it takes (that is for me it still does) to have that fully integrated into the system which happens when by and by the myopic veil of hope for a better moment than this moment or the fear for a worse moment than this, is being removed which indeed is a wonderful experience. end Intermezzo.}

PETER: If you regard ‘the rest is illusion’, if that is what you are really saying, then ‘self’-centredness can indeed be a wonderful experience. What I do notice, however, from my perspective of increasingly delighting at being here is that those who regard the physical world as being illusionary do so only by stifling their emotions and disregarding their sensual experiencing.


RESPONDENT: Part 2: {intro: – Original Message – From: Peter To: Freedom List Sent: 9 September 2002 Subject: No 23 Re: Changing others ...

PETER: I have been thinking a bit about the subject of politics lately following my reply to your last post. I have had occasion to watch a few of the recent debates about ‘should the US force a regime-change in Iraq?’ on television and was reminded at how far I had come in becoming free of the morals, beliefs, values and opinions I passionately held a few years ago. I was able to listen to the discussions without emotionally siding with the doves against the hawks, without automatically believing those I wanted to believe and distrusting those who I felt were being deceitful, without liking the so-called good guys and hating the so-called bad guys, without feeling angry or becoming depressed.

RESPONDENT: I have had simular experience with watching a football (soccer) match. Not taking sides for any of the teams the game can be watched and each player be ‘evaluated’ solely on his performance taking into account technical expertise, intent to win and generally playing in a certain style. Thus it becomes possible to enjoy the performance of as well the both teams as well as the performance of the individual players.

PETER: There is a marked similarity between humans doing battle on the battlegrounds and humans competing on sports grounds. The Romans and Incas amongst others certainly enjoyed competitive gladiatorial games as a substitute for the glory and gore of war and only in the last century isolated tribes in New Guinea were actively encouraged to take up competitive inter-tribal games as a substitute to their eons-old habit of indulging in cannibalistic inter-tribal warfare.

RESPONDENT: Lately I also have acquired this observing mode when following debates and/or particularly related to the subject about ‘should the US force a regime-change in Iraq?’ I found it helpful to keep in mind that whichever ‘expert’ was presenting his opinion, likely he had accessed information that I had not, as for many of them it is their profession to acquire data and hence they have spent more time than myself in doing so.

PETER: Yeah. As I remember it, this was the starting point for me in turning away from being obsessed with, angry about or sad about things, people and events that I actually knew little, if anything, about the facts of the matter. Then I started to realize that most of what I thought I ‘knew’ was based on the subjective reports of others, be it rumour, opinion, speculation, propaganda, spin and so on. When I began to understand the futility and senselessness of this in-grained habit, it was the beginning of the end of the habit, which in turn meant I was able to begin to focus on my own anger and my own sadness rather than be obsessed with the anger and sadness of others.


PETER: What became evident as I watched the discussions was how much passion and belief dominates political discussion and decision-making and how little common sense – a down-to-earth consideration of the facts of the matter – is evident in the discussions. As I watched, I was again reminded that the opinions most people have about these issues is based on emotionally-biased information presented by journalists, politicians, dissidents, protestors, fundamentalists and the like who thrive on presenting, provoking and promoting disparate viewpoints and spend little time and effort, if any, in researching and verifying the facts of the issue.

RESPONDENT: It takes a clear observation to be able to filter out the bias and just listen how a fellow human being, for whatever reason, expresses his/her opinion and next make my own conclusions as to the validity of the information that is being offered. [btw Sarlo’s rating of various spiritual teachers/guru’s might also be applicable to administration heads].

PETER: I really appreciate many of the television documentaries based on official documents released and first-hand accounts that have been made about significant events and people from the last century as well as the wealth of information available to all via the World Wide Web. It has been an eye-opener to discover the facts in regard to many of the major world events that occurred in my life time and contrast them with the beliefs, rumours, myths, propaganda, misinformation and passions that were circulating at the time of the event.

This type of clear observation of past events is of course only possible with the benefit of hindsight but being able to make clear observations of events that are happening now required years of work, diligently observing my own biases, beliefs and passions when and as they occurred.

RESPONDENT: As for the consideration of the question [should the US force a regime-change in Iraq?] end intro} This far I have come with forming an opinion also considering Vineeto’s response in the post ‘fellow human beings’.

As an actualist I am becoming increasingly aware of how indeed hope for the situation in this moment to become better, as well as fear for the situation this moment to get worse are the main components that come into play, when recalibrating my own global vision, which admittedly was until recently kind of distorted by a myopic veil of idealism. As to the kind of idealism I refer to, I take the liberty to requote Vineeto with added emphasis. and replace an exclaim with a question mark thus my idealism in a nutshell an alternative for J. Lennon’s Imagine [Wouldn’t it be wonderful to increasingly discover and remove the myopic veil of hope and fear and become able to relate to all people as one’s fellow human beings?’] end intro} I was a bit shocked when I considered the option of the script that a war against Iraq (either unilateral by the USA or supported by NATO) is not unlikely.

The hottest news I have on that is that Mr. T. Blair (English prime minister) disclosed information to the media that there is evidence that Iraq has the capability to strike within 45 minutes with scuts loaded with a special surprise be that surprise chemical or biological either way kind of dangerous.

So ... It is a fact that this has been announced and frankly to digest this ‘fact’ I find not really a ‘piece of cake’ so to speak. The main reason why this is so is, because I have no way of knowing anything as to the facticity of this information otherwise then being presented as a fact iow. I don’t know if indeed the answer to the question: [Does Iraq has the capability to strike within 45 minutes with scuts?] can be answered with yes.

{intermezzo What I find helpful is to consider world leaders as people with the immense task to do the administration of a country hence a far from easy job. From that any country can be seen as a team that either acts/operates in accordance or disagreement with rules that are being ‘composed’ by a rather (that is to me) obscure organ called the Security Council. Hence any civilian is either a supporter of the politics of his country or not. The main reason why people choose to live in a certain part of the world is that they have interest in maintaining or improving their lifestyle. iow. anyone with a passport has taken sides for his country and that’s where I think culpability comes in. end intermezzo}

However much more was I shocked to discover that when running the ‘what if?’ scenario. If Iraq is indeed being attacked as a ‘quick fix’ to cope with assumed danger. No doubt it will take many innocent lives and be a hazard to the country. What shocked me was that my primary concern was not so much as to how many innocent people would become victim, I hardly had taken that into account, much more was I concerned of how this would have an impact on the global economic situation and hence on my own situation. I think it is fair to assume that the effect of a war would be far from beneficial hence I hope there will not be one.

PETER: Given that you have also said in this post – ‘I found it helpful to keep in mind that whichever ‘expert’ was presenting his opinion, likely he had accessed information that I had not …’ – I would take it that we both agree that neither of us is in a position to know the facts surrounding this latest threat of war on the planet.

However, a few facts from the last century of human conflict have helped me put the current situation into perspective.

Dictators have an abysmal record of reeking havoc on their own populations and that of other countries. The likes of Lenin, Stalin, Hitler, Mao Zedong, Hirohito, Pol Pot, Idi Amin and other sundry dictators, zealots, emperors and kings have been directly culpable in bringing about the majority of war deaths, genocides, enforced famines, ethnic cleansings and purges in the last century. Of the same ilk, Saddam Hussein has instigated wars against both Iran and Kuwait, has gassed the Kurds in his own country and ruthlessly purged all opposition to his rule.

Hitler ruled Germany at a time when it blatantly disregarded the terms of truce that limited its armaments after the First World War and he was not called to task for this breach because pacifism and appeasement was the flavour of the times in both Europe and the US after WW I. In the end, the only thing that bought an end to the violence of the Axis of Germany, Italy and Japan was even more violence.

This makes it clear that ultimately, when appeals to reason and sense fail, the only thing that will bring an end to violence is either the threat of more violence or the use of more violence. The ‘peace’ bought about by the use of violence in WW II is the only reason Gary and I do not now live in a Japanese military colony or Alan and you don’t live under the rule of the Nazis. Pacifism is an ideal – that police and armies maintain law and order is a fact. (See Encyclopaedia Britannica article on the non-illusionary effects of a dictator not taken to task before it was too late to avert war.)

I won’t go on because you have probably got the gist of what I am saying but, as you have done, I make no claim to be in a position to know the facts surrounding this latest threat of war.

Just as an aside, I have recently heard it implied that the idea of suicidal sacrifice is unique to Islam. This notion does deny the fact that the Hindu Tamils in Sri Lanka have used suicide bombing as a terrorist weapon for decades and the Shinto and Buddhist Japanese practiced aerial suicide bombing some 60 years ago in WW II. The Palestinians and Al Quaeda are merely following a practice long lauded in the ‘world-is-an-illusion’ Eastern religions.

I was discussing the issue of war the other day with someone and in the end the only comment I could make was that I was glad that I had stopped being at war with other people. It’s taken 5 years of intense effort to whittle away at my beliefs and passions such that I now no longer blame others for making war nor do I take the moral high ground of feigning to be a pacifist. This I did by devoting my life to becoming harmless and happy – no more is needed to become free of malice and sorrow but anything less than total commitment will not bring success.

That’s why I pricked up my ears when you said above –

[Respondent]: What shocked me was that my primary concern was not so much as to how many innocent people would become victim, I hardly had taken that into account, much more was I concerned of how this would have an impact on the global economic situation and hence on my own situation. [endquote].

For me, the change to becoming aware of, and interested in, investigating my own feelings, passions and beliefs was the most radical aspect of actualism – and I distinctly remember being shocked many a time as to how utterly self-centred I had been programmed to be.


PETER: You wrote in response to my post to you from 30th of April, last year –

RESPONDENT: We have had extensive dialogue not unsatisfactory I presume and thereby:

  • Considering that we more or less have agreed on certain issues.
  • Considering that it was Richard who responded to my request as to make a move on a condition that was assigned by me as urgent.
  • Considering that in former correspondence you have asked a question, I think it may be a good idea to use this question to reiterate the dialogue.

So ... consider me on this virtual table for now. No silly games I’m too much aware of what is happening.


PETER: But to get back to the topic, my comments in relation to peer review was initially prompted by your following comment  –

[Respondent]: ‘Strange as it may seem after all those years, Actual Freedom appears to be only the beginning, the first step so to say.’ [endquote].

I took this to imply that you either knew of something or had experienced something that is beyond Actual Freedom. It was this statement that led me to assume that you were claiming to be an expert on actualism conducting a peer review of those who were only at the beginning or on the first step.

Perhaps you could further explain what you meant by your statement so as to throw a little more light on the subject?

RESPONDENT: So ... I move into another direction now. I’m fed up blaming institutions for the resulted current state I’m in and this world at large is spinning ‘round an AXIS’ of evil thus it’s only fair that I make a few corrections as to the presentation of my request for signing a petition, of which I find in hindsight not even worth to describe more detailed, let alone that I would waste a single word to refer to that petition. As even Richard was bemused by the reception of my request I think that you have experienced a simular bemusement when seeing popping up this request.

Yet at this point I am the one who have issued the words regime and change. On a list like this it is fair to presume that no one sees war as an option we would support in any way.

PETER: You have certainly moved in another direction. As for ‘on a list like this it is fair to presume that no one sees war as an option we would support in any way’, you can exclude me from your ‘we’.

I live in little sea-side town where law and order is ultimately maintained by armed police. Usually the threat of the use of those arms is sufficient to deter criminal activity but it is understood by all that if the police need to use their guns to apprehend armed criminals then they will do so.

In the world as-it-is, with people as-they-are, in the murky area of inter-tribal moral and territorial conflicts, when push comes to shove, law and order is ultimately maintained by armies. Given the human condition, this has always been so and will always be so, unless and until sufficient individuals take it upon themselves to lead by example by ridding themselves of their own instinctual malice and sorrow.

But you should know this by now as I’ve said it before many times. I would refer you to the following posts for reference – Peter to No 23, 9.9.02, 14.9.02

RESPONDENT: So. I use one of your favourite expression I intent to push the envelope to the maximum. The facts are that currently we (humanity feel free to in or exclude yourself but I for one am in) have tremendous resources and also tremendous destructive potential. <generating, categories> The rock I have run upon time and again is the feeling of not being understood and it’s a pain I barely can describe. I’m not asking for sympathy.

PETER: I don’t know if this comment relates to your not being understood on this list, but if so you could take comfort from the fact that you are by no means alone in feeling so. Thus far, of the hundreds of people who have come across actualism, only a handful have really understood what actualism is about, and many have felt themselves to be not understood.

It is not an easy thing to consider that there is something new in human history – I know when I first came across actualism, I used to read Richard’s writings word for word, sentence by sentence, not moving on until I had clearly understood that particular part of what he was saying. Often I would spend hours reading, re-reading and thinking about a few sentences at most. It was hard work, mind twisting at times, simply because I was trying to understand something that was completely new and something that was at odds with what I had been taught to be true, believed to factual, understood to be right, felt to be good and so on.

Persistence and perseverance is the only way to overcome cognitive dissonance.

RESPONDENT: Gary posted an interesting bit that rang true with some of my other recent investigations :

[Gary]: ‘I was acutely aware of ‘my’ need to create a cozy nest and cling to my relationship with my partner. <snip> I realized that human beings usually all create this comfortable and peaceful corner of reality in their homes as a means of warding off or keeping out the harshness and cruelty of the outside world. This seems to be an instinctive pattern of behaviour, harkening back to the time when our ancestors hunkered in deep caves for protection against predators and other perils of the night.’ Gary to Vineeto, 19.1.2003

as to [this comfortable and peaceful corner of reality in their homes] This is where we feel secure; we also call it ‘our’ privacy. This so-called ‘private me’ generally hides/withdraws as soon as the flesh-body goes (is forced to go) outside this peaceful corner and apparently then this ‘private me’ morphs into this very lonely and frightened entity (that it actually is) shelled by the overall social protecting/ controller who takes over and makes the grim battle of survival more or less bearable yet not a celebration.

Thus we carry our ‘privacy’ with us as a sort of a burden that yet is held incredibly dear, because should we actually feel at home outside our home we may become this instinctive/emotional affected being that indeed might laugh cry get angry, shout or have orgasms in public and so on when the body-energy takes over; i.o.w. we would go more or less ‘insane’ and and/out of control, surely the thin veneer of civilization would no longer hold and one might start acting with a new social consciousness.

Self-aggrandizement is the key to actual social interaction, because if I become a ‘godman’ I have no other choice then to proclaim anyone who I meet to be the same and pass over that message (not necessarily verbally though). iow. I become the challenge of change to my fellow man and perhaps not everybody is ready to accept that as it implies full responsibility wherever you are for what you are.

To deny oneself to be less then a ‘godman’ is to deprive one’s fellow-beings from this opportunity of realization and keep humanity away from entering into a new kind of consciousness where the energy of intelligence can take over this planet, because it now has been well suffering long enough from stupidity and carelessness.

On the contrary this ability to interact with the ‘psychic web’ may well be the opportunity to tap into any emotion (or instinctive reaction) to experience it learn from it and neutralize its harmful aspect, next feeding this neutralized energy back to the web this may cause a momentary flash of awareness, iow it may raise the consciousness of that particular ‘social circle’ in which one is resonating.

PETER: This is a particularly accurate description of the lure of self-aggrandizement.

Within the human condition, there are only two choices – remain within the grim reality and relentless competitiveness of materialism – ‘the grim battle of survival’ – or seek an illusionary protection of some mythical God, or in pantheistic belief, indulge in the ultimate ‘self-aggrandizement’ – the delusion that your are, in fact, God.

This ‘seeing the Light’, ‘being born again’, or feeling oneself to be immortal and eternal is rather like putting on a suit of armour – ‘a new kind of consciousness’ – in order to protect oneself from the ‘suffering’ and ‘stupidity and carelessness’ of others who continue to live in the illusion of grim reality.

In the town where I live, there are literally hundreds of people in various stages of self-aggrandizement, all of whom proclaim they are a God-man or God-woman of some sort, all of whom are willing and eager to proclaim this to anyone they meet, to pass on their message that everyone is the same and to trumpet the message of humanity entering into a new kind of consciousness, because this planet has been ‘well suffering long enough from stupidity and carelessness’.

Each of these teachers has their own particular realization to pass on and their own group of followers. There is no consensus between the teachers nor between the followers of different teachers at all – indeed there is very often dissension between the followers of the same teacher. The belief that ‘a new kind of consciousness’ based on self-aggrandizement will bring peace on earth between human beings is just that, an idea – it does not work in practice, has never worked in practice and can never work in practice because it fails to address the root cause of human violence and suffering.

Rather than bringing an end to human violence and suffering, spiritual and religious belief simply adds another dimension to human conflict and misery – the battle for the moral high ground, a battle ultimately fuelled by the self-righteous anger of those who feel ‘holier than thou’ or maintain a position of being ‘above it all’.


RESPONDENT: <Snipped for length> It’s interesting to consider that the primitive concept of good apparently must have been backed by an emotion that was variable as to the validation of the essence quality (‘goodness’), hence life as it were back then was possible to be experienced by the primitive human as good, very good.

So… thus a judgment or evaluation as to his own feeling of well being entails this well being not to be continue as experienced with the same intensity, yet that it is unlikely that good could was felt as the opposite of ‘very good’ iow. good vs. very good was not experienced.

Was Bad perhaps not represented in the primitive experience; as one had not yet conceptualized Bad? Doesn’t such a way of experiencing come close to naivety or even innocence?

So… what could this God have been in the primitive mind, not of course that concept from my own western conditioned mind that we (not primitives) called God as that was only borrowed and abused/corrupted and so on?

PS. I have brought this up as I myself find it no longer possible to even conceive that there is a creator or that there was something before this universe and I’m puzzled how and when the human brain became ‘capable’ of conceiving such a concept.

PETER: I like it that you have been thinking about the origins of religious/ spiritual beliefs and the whole notion of Good and Evil. I thought to post some of the conclusions that I came to about this topic as they may act as further food for thought for you. The first piece is from The Actual Freedom Trust Glossary –

Peter: ‘The human brain with its ability to cogitate, reflect and communicate is the peak of intelligence known to be currently manifest in the universe. These unique functions, when overlaid over the instinctual rudimentary ‘self’, produce in humans a much more sophisticated and complex sense of self than in any other animal. Further, this individual sense of self has been painfully aware not only of a ferocious world of wild animals and a harsh environment, but also of the fact that it could die or be killed at any moment. At some seminal moment in evolution, there began a faculty of fanciful thought, an escape from harsh reality and a retreat into the world of imagination. The sun became a thing of awe in the face of fear of darkness, the night skies and stars things of wonder in the face of the hell of life on earth. Thus the world of the heavens was to be eventually seen as populated by good and evil spirits, later to be personified as gods and goddesses, demons and devils. In the face of instinctual fear, humans escaped into a fanciful imaginary world that was to become so strong, so powerful, and so convincing as to be eventually accepted as being as real, and as substantial, as everyday grim reality.

Curiously, this world of imagination is not only confined to the spiritual world but is also rampant in all scientific communities as is evidenced by the meta-physical ruminations of theoretical physics, pure mathematics, psychology, anthropology, psychology, astronomy, etc. Various attempts have been made to crack through, or escape from, the stranglehold this imaginary psychic construct has over humanity, but all have failed to go all the way (up until now). This capacity for imagination is imbibed with mother’s milk – the first stories we are told, and therefore the first world view we have, is of an ‘other-world’ of fairy stories, fictionary romance, heroism, tales of good and evil – all totally imaginary and having no relevance to the physical, actual world of people, things and events in which we live.

We are, in fact, inducted into believing the imaginary world to be primary and real, and consequently to regard the physical, actual world as secondary and illusionary. This primary imaginary world includes both a ‘real’ world-view and its associated ‘spiritual’ world-view, neither of which are actual. This obsession with imagination, belief, trust, faith and hope offers a continuing haven of denial of the facts of the Human Condition and prevents us from getting up off our bums, or up from our lotus position, and taking the necessary action that will lead to the eventual elimination of malice and sorrow from this fair planet.’ The Actual Freedom Trust Library, ‘Imagination’

The next piece is from the end of the God chapter of my journal and was written soon after I had managed to extricate myself from the grip of the religious and spiritual beliefs. As such it may have a freshness that you can relate to.

[Peter]: ... ‘I often mused at how the idea of God began in the first place and why he has had such a long run despite such an abysmally bad performance. Since I do not believe in past lives, I can only guess, of course. Life must have been incredibly tough in the early cave-dwelling days – survival, shelter, food, warmth, protection, procreation, defence and attack. It was a purely animal existence, but humans had a brain that was able to reflect. Living in sheer terror of and dependency on the elements seems to have created the idea that some sort of appeasement or sacrifice was necessary to curry favour, or at least to not incur their wrath. Some of the earliest Gods were actually Fire, Sun, Moon and the Earth itself. At the heart of some modern day Eastern temples a perpetual fire is still kept burning – a tradition stretching back to these times. The leaders of the tribes would then have found it advantageous to take over the position of messengers or representatives of the Gods. This was only natural, given man’s cunning, and thus were born the priests, shamans and God-men!

Richard had the courage to leave God behind and he has charted a course to freedom that I am able to follow easily. There is now a third alternative to being either ‘ordinary’ or God, and it works! You simply get out of the world of imagination and into the actual world, and leave both your ‘self’ and ‘Self’ behind. Now there is an escape route that does not involve becoming God, or cunningly becoming ‘one with him’ – a sort of a ‘God and I are best mates’ scenario that men have used to wield power over others and to wage horrendous wars for centuries. It is good to have left God, including all of his aliases (Truth, This, or That, Energy, Tao, Consciousness, Something Else, The Source, Love – either Divine or Universal – Gaia, The Universe, Mother Earth, Aliens, etc…) where He/She belongs – in the world of imagination.

Finally, it was just a matter of seeing the idea of God or anything else apart from the physical universe as pure imagination. The idea of God, the Good and Love to fight the Devil, the Bad, and Evil is ingrained in us as the only solution to fight the malice and sorrow that we are born with. But now there is available a direct, down-to-earth practical method of ridding oneself of that wiring in the brain – and it works! It does involve having the courage to leave the imaginary world of Gods, Spirits, Love and Good behind, but the understanding and experiencing that the Devil, Bad and Evil are equally illusory is the key to the door. One is then simply able to step out of the so-called real world and into the actual world and leave one’s ‘self’ (and ‘Self’) behind.

To be free of both God and the Devil, both Good and Evil, and to begin to enjoy the vast freedom and physical delights of the actual infinite universe … is yet another essential precursor to becoming actually free!’ Peter’s Journal God

And lastly, another piece from the Library which especially focuses on the currently fashionable Eastern religious beliefs –

Peter: ‘There are literally countless beliefs, superstitions, pseudo-scientific theories and the like, that have been trotted out over the millennia to explain why we are here, as human beings, on this planet. The search for the cause, the source, for the beginning, the creation, or the creator, the meaning, the reason for it all, has always obsessed humans, solely because of the fear of being here in the first place and the subsequent resentment at continually feeling an alien in an alien place. This obsession with ‘why we are here’ has fuelled the perennial search for a greater or higher meaning to being here. This ‘search’ inevitably leads to the discovery that there is a Greater and Higher meaning – that there is a ‘person or thing’ (or energy) ‘that makes or keeps a thing alive’. To make this ‘discovery’ is effortless: one needs only slide over into the spiritual world, let go, surrender, close one’s eyes and go in. One enters the spiritual world that exists ethereally and is layered over the actual world. This is the world of good spirits and evil spirits, Gods and Goddesses, ancient healings and esoteric medicines, divinations and prophecies, energies and auras, folk tales and legends, gurus and shamans, fairies and goblins, sacred sites and cosmic planes, chakras and levels of consciousness, visions and entities, ESP and UFO’s, Chi Gong and Feng Shui, somas and souls, mysticism and meditation, rituals and rites, reincarnations and past lives, karmas and dharmas, devils and demons and so on. This whole phantasmagorical ‘other-world’ has been so embellished, so documented, so believed in, and made so substantial in the human psyche as to be convincingly real – and it is no small task to wrench oneself free from the common beliefs and Truths of a spirit world.

One would not bother unless one had a direct experience of the actual world and then one would never settle for the imaginary, the ethereal, the second-rate. One would never settle for ‘right-suffering’, or being ‘grateful’ to some-one or some-thing for ‘life’, when one could eliminate the instinctual source of fear and sorrow that is the very cause of suffering and resentment in the first place. One would never bother with being Here and Now with one’s head stuck in the clouds, searching for True meaning, when one could be here and now in the actual world with one’s feet firmly on the earth, with meaning abundantly and extravagantly apparent everywhere.’ The Actual Freedom Trust Library, ‘Life’

Good fun, hey.

What I liked about becoming free of belief is that, as each belief tumbles, a tangible and palpable freedom results. This is, after all, what actualism is about.



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