PETER: Hi, in reply to your good question –
RESPONDENT: Are you a missionary?
PETER: A missionary, by definition, usually refers to the spreading of a particular faith. Since
I see no sense at all in merely believing what anyone says I pass on that one. I am not flogging a spiritual or religious method. I am saying that
there is now an alternative to being normal or becoming spiritual – there is now available a new, down-to-earth actual freedom from the Human
‘Missionary’ can also refer to the ‘style’ of presentation or wording. I thought a lot about
this when I wrote my journal as I was writing with enthusiasm at the time, and I knew with the general cynicism abounding in the world, that it
would generally be regarded as missionary. But what to do ... I am enthusiastic that at least we are beginning to talk sensibly about that ‘which
cannot be spoken of’.
At some point in my spiritual search I noticed that my scepticism was turning to cynicism and I deliberately
attempted to turn my scepticism into investigation and scrutiny.
The other thing about a missionary is that he has the power of God with him, he is doing God’s work.
He represents the ultimate authority – God.
I am, most definitely, not an authority in that sense, but I am an expert on how to become happy and
harmless and how to live with a woman/man in peace, harmony and equity.
So it is my pleasure, for a few hours a day, to get an opportunity to write of how it is to be actually
free of the Human Condition.
It beats Enlightenment by a country mile ...
RESPONDENT: It is amazing how much time you find to post these many 10
to 30 KB heavy messages to the list every day. Do you still find the time to connect with people in real life or is your computer just the most
beloved companion, meeting all your needs?? Just wondering.
PETER: I do a few hours a day on the computer and nothing much else. We walk downtown for a
meal, watch a bit of TV, have a romp, lay around a lot. I do enjoy writing and did think I might make a living out of it, but what I am saying is
not very popular stuff. The only way to get a discussion going so far, has been to drop in on this list. I know it is pissing some people off but
a few seem interested, so I’ll keep going for a bit.
It is funny, though. I naively thought that the spiritual seekers, Sannyasins in particular, would be
the ones who would be interested in this.
Particularly seeing the religion is so obvious now. I suspect that many have invested too many years to
even consider something else.
I gave a few books to friends but they have gone mostly unread. I think many are scared that it might
actually work, and nobody – deep down – wants to change.
So, I have plenty of time, I never run out of time – it’s impossible.
A bit from the end of the Time chapter of my journal might explain why ... (I managed to tackle all the
big topics in my journal – it was the only way to come to my senses).
[Peter]: ... ‘When I met Richard I soon realised that I had not even scratched the surface of what
was necessary in order to become free. I quickly re-organised my life into a semi-retirement of working about three hours a day, in order to
devote the rest of my time to be either with Richard or Vineeto. Thus, the major focus of time and effort I devoted totally and selfishly to my
burning ambition in life. I also found that I needed time to myself to contemplate and mull over what was happening as all the beliefs were being
challenged – uninterrupted time to string some thoughts together, to dig around, to make sense of things. The hours and hours spent with Richard
and Vineeto were largely devoted to this exploration, but I had to sort it out for myself, and that takes time. In this period, time wasted on
unnecessary things was simply time wasted.
A curious thing began to happen when I contemplated on what it is to be a human being, when I pondered
the Human Condition, when I became ‘self’-obsessed.
Soon everything that I did, every action, every word, every thought, was analysed in terms of ‘how
am I experiencing this moment of being alive?’ Then I was able to identify the lost, lonely, frightened, and very cunning entity that ‘I’
am – the cause of malice and sorrow within me. This is definitely not meditation, it is 180 degrees opposite. This is being fully occupied in
the world of people, things and events: not retreating or hiding from it. The whole point of the exercise is to identify that identity in
action – a sort of a psychic ‘search and destroy’ mission, if you like – and the aim is to become as happy and harmless as is humanly
possible. The point of meditation on the other hand is to merely ignore and ‘rise above’ the behaviour in question: to dissociate from and
transcend it, as they say. Transcending, per definition, is to ‘go above and beyond’, which is really ‘Above and Beyond’, as we all
The other essential difference is that Richard’s method concentrates all of the attention on this
moment in time, this actual moment now. The whole emphasis is on how am I experiencing myself NOW? This has the effect of eliminating the future
as something to worry about, and the inevitable postponement that it brings. The ‘there’s always tomorrow’, ‘one day I will…’, or the
spiritual ‘in my next lifetime’ are simply a cop out. By bringing my attention to the fact that this is my only moment of being alive, and
that if I was happy ten minutes ago and I’m not happy now, the fact is: I’m not happy now. So what is the cause, the source? I don’t deny
that I didn’t have a goal and that this goal was in the future – to be happy and harmless 24hrs. a day, every day. However, my immediate aim
was to be happy and harmless now, in this very moment of being alive! But it does take time to work through each of the societal beliefs and
instinctual passions, to thoroughly investigate them. I always considered it nonsense to delude myself with the advice that I was already
Enlightened, ‘That’ or perfect, when I knew exactly how I was inside and how I acted. It always seemed as though I was kidding myself that I
was all right when, if I was honest with myself, I knew I wasn’t.
So my retirement in the last twelve months was really a retirement from the busyness of life, with all
its effort, emotions and worries. A retirement from constantly ‘being’, from having a purpose and a continuity. Then increasingly I become
aware that I, this body, is simply doing what is happening, which right now happens to be typing these words. I know that at some time today
Vineeto will go off to work, I will eat, type whatever words come, laze around and eventually go to bed.
I know that later on, if I’m still alive, I soon will have to work to earn some money, but
beyond that there are no plans, no desires, no expectations. Of course, I have preferences and also practical things to do, but I will simply
be doing them when I’m doing them; they require little, if any, planning.
This has nothing to do with the spiritual ‘being in the moment’ or ‘being here’, which is an
attempt to hold on to an inner state of bliss, which in turn involves practising a constant detachment from the physical world, the body and
the emotions. To attempt to bring one’s meditation into the marketplace is to attempt the impossible. As I know from my experience meditation
is an artificially contrived, imaginary state of bliss that is notoriously fickle and temporary. Only very rarely does it lead to a more or
less permanent altered state of consciousness, but then the real trouble begins as one practices losing all touch with the actual, sensual
world. Peter’s Journal, ‘Time’
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. This moment is the only time I can
experience; the past is nothing but a memory stored in the brain cells, only some of which I can recall if required. And the future hasn’t
happened yet, and when it comes it will be this moment. Living this as an actuality leaves no room for the ‘self’, that identity who always
has a past and a future.
By doing what is happening in this moment, ‘I’ momentarily
cease to exist, for my awareness is involved fully in what is happening, in this case typing these words, feeling the cooling breeze on my legs
and occasionally being aware of traffic and bird calls outside.
It is all becoming so eminently effortless, near-perfect but, as I discovered, it
does take time to get used to living this way. There was a ‘can it be this easy, this simple, this lazy, this effortless, this good, this
near-perfect?’ It goes totally against the ideas of struggle, effort, achievement, being creative or useful. I now see everyone else as
wasting time by avoiding this very moment by living with their past, usually sad memories, or by dreaming and planning their future in a futile
attempt to give purpose or meaning to their lives.
They all are avoiding or missing out on the thrill of experiencing this moment of being
alive as a sensate human being. The method Richard devised to eliminate the ‘self’ – malice and sorrow – is flawless and ruthlessly
effective. If my awareness is constantly focused on ‘How I am experiencing this moment of being alive?’ as a silent attitude, a non-verbal
attentiveness, there is simply no room for a past or future, a sense of continuity. There is no room for feelings or emotions or for ‘going
inside’ as a way of avoiding and withdrawing. Should they occur then there is something to look at – the aim being to get back to being happy
and harmless as soon as possible. Practised assiduously, the psychological and psychic entity actually withers and will one day eventually die, as
does anything starved of nourishment or sustenance.
Then ‘what I am’ will eventually emerge one day, I as this body, the one that was here anyway, the
one that had been struggling at the shackles for freedom. Fresh each moment … again and again and again.
I am now beginning to discover the meaning of life.’ Peter’s
Good, Hey ...
So, that was another good few kilos ... but a lot of it was ‘copy and paste’, and it was such a
pleasure to write to you.
PETER: Our server was off the air for a while, so haven’t had a chance to get back to you.
RESPONDENT: I am absolutely tired to press the ‘delete’ button and
I am feeling raped the way you go on in pouring Tons of kilobytes down the list; unfortunately I have to download it under Indian line conditions.
To me – this is absolutely unwanted and undesired.
PETER: Feeling raped, Hey? That’s pretty strong. Most people seem to have similar reactions
when they feel that their beliefs, religious ideals or spiritual yearnings are being challenged. The religious wars and conflicts on the planet at
the moment are testament to the strength of these reactions. There are numerous laws in many countries that attempt to keep a lid on these ‘feelings’
but, when push comes to shove, they fail with appalling and horrendous consequences for the less powerful.
RESPONDENT: Why don’t you look for an exclusive audience that it
interested in your postings?
PETER: So new, so radical, and so unpopular is what I am saying that it is silly to look for an
exclusive audience. I write in the firm knowledge that there are some intrepid individuals out there who are willing to acknowledge that the ‘tried
and true’ paths have failed to bring them the peace they seek. It is to them I write.
RESPONDENT: Although I have the option to avoid the kind of energy that
is dominating nowadays the list by unsubscribing, I hope you might become a little bit more sensitive about what is worth sharing and what is only
PETER: I think you have other options to cut out what I say and still stay on the list, but that
is up to you. Curiously, I was thinking of abandoning the list but your plaintive cry for ‘sensitivity’ spurred me on. ‘Sensitivity’ is
such a mis-used word in spiritual circles in my experience. When meditators become more ‘sensitive’ they usually talk in terms of the
market-place being so hard and so tough, and everybody else being so insensitive and unloving. This creates a superiority and separation from
others that is both palpable and insidious. What spiritual people really mean by ‘sensitive’ is that they are intolerant of others and other
beliefs. This is, of course, a common feeling of all believers of all faiths and is part and parcel of the spiritual and religious worlds. Not
that I am a defender of the ‘real’ world. What I write of is a third alternative – an actual down to earth freedom that is eminently
liveable in the market place. It requires not retreat, withdrawal, or exclusivity.
I take it by mind-fucking you mean the ability to think, talk, write and make sense of things rather
than feel, emote, assume, accept, trust, surrender or have faith. Yes, thinking has such a bad press in the Eastern Religions. I remember as a kid
being told don’t think, don’t question, don’t argue ... just do it!!!
It was okay when I was a kid at home or at school but it was a habit that I retained all my life, until
I met someone who pointed out that it was my life I was living, and to unquestionably accept what others told me was a second-rate way to live. It
did mean eventually challenging the hallowed and sacred Ancient Truths and Wisdoms, but an actual freedom emerges that is so vastly superior to
the synthetic and Divine freedom on offer to date, it bears no comparison.
I find it curious that spiritual freedom means retreating from the physical into the meta-physical,
from the real world into the spirit-ual world, from the market place to the Ashram, from the senses to the imagination, from the actual to the
cerebral, from the outer to the inner, from thinking to feeling – from head in the sand to head in the clouds.
People have been sharing their ‘feelings’ since time immemorial, and still hope that love (or Love)
will overcome our innate feelings of fear and aggression.
Still, it is your life, and your ‘sensitivity’, but thanks for the spur on to write more about the
RESPONDENT No 23: Well now that Vineeto and Peter have gone to talk on
their own list, what shall we talk about?
RESPONDENT to No 23: Don’t
worry, priests will not go voluntary!
PETER: No indeed. The priests have a vested interest in maintaining the belief in God for that
is only the source of their power. The God they represent is an entry into a promised after-life, a ‘dispenser’ of personal favours to the ‘good
and the faithful’. Their God is also a jealous and wrathful God, so look out if you step out of line or dare to criticize, for they are the
defenders of the faith. The other essential ingredient for the power of the priests is to play on people’s fears, and I have described my
experiences of this, if you are interested –
[Peter]: ... ‘When the Ranch folded I would never again have that same enthusiasm, nor would many
We had taken it from inspiration, through isolationism and fanaticism, to the brink
of martyrdom, until Rajneesh pulled the plug and flew the coup. I still find it amazing to have seen and been inside a religion while it was
being formed. When my faith in Rajneesh finally faded several years after his death and I saw what was happening in the religion, it became
obvious to me that I had to get out of the ‘Club’. After the last visit to Poona, I decided it would be hypocritical to continue using my
religious name and so became Peter again. I remember being out with a group of Rajneesh friends and being introduced to someone as Peter. From
his attitude towards me, I was obviously an outsider for him – a bit like meeting a Muslim at a ‘Bar Mitzvah’.
Now I simply see Rajneeshism as just another of the 6000 or so
other religious groups. They merely belong to a particular group who are ‘Right’ and ‘Good’ and who fight and fear other groups who are
‘Wrong’ and ‘Bad’, simply because they believe in a different God or ‘God-man’.
The gathering in groups is for support, strength, protection and ‘belonging’ and
is seen as a way of overcoming fear, whereas much of the fear is generated within the group itself or in its teachings. Religion against
religion. The Catholics fight against the Protestants, the Hindus against the Muslims, the Rajneeshees against the American Christians and
everybody against the Jews.
The battlegrounds are legendary – Ireland, The Middle East,
India-Pakistan, The Balkans and Indonesia are on the latest list. One is right and so the other must be wrong! One is good so the other must be
evil! It could be seen as merely humorous but we are, after all, talking about human beings fighting and killing other human beings over which
imaginary God is the ‘right one’ or the only ‘True’ one! It’s like a battle between different Gods with human beings as the willing
and active participants – the actual armies of the psychic Gods. An appalling, eternal battle as to which God is the most powerful, and new
Gods are added as some of the old and weaker ones fall away.
Each army has their own God as leader; their own doctrine, law, morality and
passion. Fear and hatred for the other armies is preached and spread. Active recruitment is an encouraged activity in the name of ‘rescuing’
Allegiance and loyalty are essential traits of a good follower, so
trust, faith and hope are invoked continuously. Rajneesh and others like him preach fear from the pulpit, and it is deliberately provoked to
keep the group numbers up and strong. Never was Rajneeshism to be as strong again as it was in the days of persecution and enemies – and the
boys still sit around, happily telling ‘war’ stories of the good old days. And the myths and legends will grow and grow with time, enhanced
and embellished by the priests and priestesses.
A religious army is essentially no different to a nation’s army. One does battle
for beliefs, ideals and morals, and as I know from personal experience, its members are willing to kill or die to defend those beliefs or to
attack the beliefs of others.
A nation’s army does battle to defend the territory of its members, or attack
the territory of other nations. And all are subject to the whims and directives of whoever is the perceived authority at any time, for they
have ‘Good’, ‘Truth’ and ‘Right’ on their side in the fight against ‘Evil’. When the competition between the Gods is played out
for ‘real’ it has resulted in the death, torture and suffering of billions of people for millennia in endless religious wars and vendettas.
So much for belonging to a group and sharing common beliefs!
‘Let me out’ I screamed, as I gradually came to see the facts of all this. The
very act of believing serves only to obscure, distort and pervert the facts.
The very act of acknowledging the facts was to demolish my very ‘self’ – my beliefs. No wonder I
fought like hell to deny seeing the full extent of all this. But I did remember that time in Poona where I had seen it in a flash – worshipping
an empty chair! It just took me eight more years to get free of it all.’ ... Peter’s Journal, ‘People’
Yes indeed, the priests will not go voluntarily – better to simply leave them.