Selected Correspondence Peter
PETER to Alan: I was watching a BBC program on ‘the troubles’ in Northern Ireland where a journalist who had been raised and schooled there went back for a reminisce and re-look. He talked about the history of the war that has raged for hundreds of years and noted that he had been taught at school what he termed the ‘safe’ version of history. He had been taught that the British were the enemy and the British were at fault, but no mention was made of the on-going civil war where Irish have slaughtered Irish for centuries. Fellow country-man against fellow country-man.
Another news clip mentioned the ambivalence of the Spanish people towards the bitter civil war fought only 60 years ago where country-man fought country-man in a ferocious war that left a half million people dead. The American Civil War is yet another of these civil-wars that get scant consideration in the chronicles of man’s inhumanity to man, yet 600,000 died in a fight over ‘principles’. How many Russians killed their own countrymen, how many Chinese died fighting Chinese, how many neighbours slaughtered neighbours?
Man’s ‘inhumanity’ to man is legendary and now that it is increasingly well documented as endemic on the planet, it will be increasingly difficult to deny. The Holocaust conveniently gets most of the press – it’s the classic opportunity to put the blame on one evil man as being the sole cause of the genocides.
The Oxford Dictionary defines genocide as ‘The deliberate and systematic extermination of an ethnic or national group’ . The words ‘deliberate and systematic’ are what distinguish human animal violence from the violence exhibited by the rest of the animals on the planet – we think and plan our violence, adding a ruthless efficiency to the business of killing our fellow human beings. So it was that during World War 2, some 300 U.S. planes incinerated 120,000 civilians in the Tokyo firestorm raid, and only months later it needed just 2 planes to obliterate 105,000 people in Nagasaki and Hiroshima. Within a few short years the development of the hydrogen bomb was to bring a 700-fold increase in destructive force compared to these first crude atom bombs. And since then developments is such that a man can push a button and fire an ‘arrow’ with many such bombs on board and hit multiple ‘bulls-eyes’ anywhere on the planet. A ruthless efficiency.
PETER: Hi Alan,
I always like the way that a situation, a meeting with someone or some words will twig a particular understanding of some part of the Human Condition. Each such understanding is invaluable, a gold nugget for an actualist, and needs not to be glossed over or fritted away. It is only by musing over these discoveries, contemplating upon them and milking them for all they are worth that one can ‘re-wire’ the brain, reprogram it to delete its instinctual and social programming. It is this very programming that has ensured, until now, only two options for every human being – either a real life of malice and sorrow or a spiritual life of malice and sorrow with the additional programming of denial and transcendence.
The other day I was watching a news report of the current peace talks between Israel and Syria and an Israeli expert was being interviewed. He said peace with Syria was difficult because ‘we don’t know and trust the Syrians’. He said, ‘peace with the Palestinians was easier because we have conquered the Palestinians’. A brief scan through my knowledge of history suggested that his observation could be applied to all peace deals and peace treaties. For peace to reign, one side must be victorious over the other and, as such, these peace deals are in fact surrender deals. These treaties set out the terms of surrender and the other side ‘naturally’ builds up resentment and anger in order to do battle again, be it overt or covert. The battle inevitably resumes, if not with guns then with words or feelings of resentment that are inbred as a social conditioning in each tribal member. Many current conflicts have their roots in conflicts that are hundreds or thousands of years old – so much for the promise to forgive and forget and the ideal that ‘we are all one’ and that one day there will be peace.
I further remembered how this exact same scenario forms the basis of all human relating – battle, victor / loser, surrender, withdrawal, ‘peace’ deal, resentment, plotting either overt or covert revenge, picking a time when other is vulnerable, strike back, battle, victor / loser ... What Vineeto and I did was stop battling in our relationship and begin an investigation as to why the battle of the sexes exists in the first place. One can do this with every other relationship until the desire, the need and the will to battle withers and eventually dies. It is only by stopping and changing that something else can happen, otherwise what is, and always has been, will continue.
Every discovery and insight into the Human Condition is useless unless one applies it with honesty and sincerity to how one is living one’s own life, for unless one is actually free of the Human Condition, one is not exempt. As we know, one can easily feel free but it is in the ‘push comes to shove’ moments that one is tested. It is in these moments that the instinctual passions will always over-ride the good, the well-meaning and the rational. It is when jealousy rages to violence that the sexual instinct and associated nurture – the emotion that humans fondly call love – is shown as nothing other than a powerful and blind animal instinctual passion. It is when one’s spiritual beliefs are questioned that the raw instinctual fear of death will arise and cause one to act in ways that are both desperate and insane. When one is threatened with ostracism or isolation from the security of whatever group or relationship one feels one belongs to, that one literally will do anything to avoid being an outsider or on one’s own.
The chemical surges that cause us to automatically feel and act fearful, nurturing, aggressive and desirous are primary, ‘quick and dirty’, thoughtless and instinctual-emotional and, as such, ultimately uncontrollable by moral and ethical training or by denial and imaginary transcendence. These chemical surges that arise from the instinctual passions are most definitely not an illusion that one can deny or pretend that one has overcome them – they are very real – readily measurable in response times, sourced from a particular location in the physical brain and empirically observable in action. It was only when this chemical flow ceased that Richard became actually free of the Human Condition. To quote Richard from the ‘Introduction to Actual Freedom’ –
An actualist will not skip over the ‘however’, for in that one word is the key to the difference between an actual freedom and an illusionary freedom from the Human Condition.
In the past, the feeling of freedom was the best on offer – feeling ‘above it all’ was better than feeling ‘part of the rest’ – but it did nothing to stop anyone from being driven by the instinctual passions. In fact, to follow the spiritual path was but to jump out of the frying pan into the fire. The religious wars, the spiritual perversions of celibacy and Tantric teachings, the teachings of suffering, doom, evil and fear, the battle of the religions and God-men for ever more numbers and ever more power, the ongoing humiliation of human beings prostrating themselves before mythical Gods and humbug God-men – all this attest to the institutionalized insanity of any and all spiritual belief-systems.
These ancient beliefs do nothing but cloud over, divert, deflect, distract, sidetrack, compound and ultimately cause one to turn away from the only sensible human freedom – a freedom for human beings to stop instinctually behaving like animals and treating each other like animals.
Well, all that came out of one little news report about a ‘peace’ negotiation to stop two groups of humans waging war against each other. Good to sheet it back home and see where one is ‘waging war’ oneself and to see what I can actually do about peace on earth.
No 13 wrote recently that ‘The actual revolutions start here as a matter of course each time a new wonder manifests itself into consciousness or a physical sensation. I can only help myself each moment again. I can only partake of all that is on offer.’ [endquote].
Being pragmatic I would say that ‘the actual re-programming of one’s brain – the deleting of one’s social and instinctual programming – can only start and continue by investigating each time that a new feeling manifests itself and prevents me from being happy and harmless.’
These thoughtful investigations can be so revealing, so insightful, so blindingly obvious that synapses in the brain can snap, clarity can result and behaviour can be changed and – provided ‘I’ don’t claim the credit – PCEs can result.
Ah well, Alan, this has turned into another of my raves, but life continually presents one with serendipitous opportunities to study the Human Condition, to see it in operation as one’s ‘self’ ... and countless reasons to be actually free of the lot.
PETER: Hi all,
I was doing a bit of editing in the Glossary the other day and came across some definitions that I thought was particularly pertinent to the discussions on the list. Most of the people I have talked to about Actual Freedom seem to have no idea what constitutes a belief and what constitutes a fact. Often I would enter into a conversation and find that the person had absolutely no idea of the difference between a belief and a fact. They would insist that something was true, the Truth, ‘my’ truth, they ‘felt’ it to be so, it was their understanding, they heard it was so, etc. and that was good enough for them. When I pointed out that other people of different cultures, spiritual or religious leanings, political or social views held differing views and these differences were the source of confusion, confrontation, conflict, persecution and warfare, I was met with bewilderment. Nobody was willing to admit that their own particular cherished views and understandings were beliefs. It is always the same – I’m right and the others are wrong, my God or Guru is the only God or Guru and everyone else has beliefs – not me!
According to the Red Cross over 1 billion people have been directly affected by war or armed conflicts in the last 20 years. ‘Affected by’ includes death, being maimed, tortured, raped, imprisoned, displaced, losing family members, possessions, homes, etc. The vast majority of these wars and armed conflicts are fought over religious, spiritual, tribal, ethical, moral and political beliefs – dearly held and dearly fought over beliefs!
Those people who have been, or continue to be, on the spiritual path are those least likely to actively challenge their beliefs for they have been indoctrinated and taught to value belief over fact and they further hobble themselves with faith, trust, hope and loyalty as well. A potent, and very often, lethal mix.
IRENE: Wow, some fire has erupted, I read in your e-mail! Despite your vitriolic confusion about me and my new(?), old(?), woman only(?) anti-man(?) philosophy, I couldn’t help chuckling about you here and there and saying ‘fair enough, Peter’.
PETER: So I guess if you regard my last letter as vitriolic we are coming to an end of our correspondence. We seem to ground on the major rock of feelings and emotions and we have wide philosophical differences on the matter. (...)
I have no wish to interfere with your happiness. I just want to make it clear why I am continuing with the findings of the ‘other 50% of the experimenters’ and that I have neither doubt nor fear of the consequences.
At the risk of again being seen as vitriolic, I will give you a quote from my journal that I wrote after an incident I witnessed where a group of people confronted Richard and accused him of being cold, uncaring and deceitful.
I know it’s strong and leaves no room for compromises but that’s how I see the Human Condition. You may see it as vindictive but for some reason it seems appropriate again right now. I guess it is that I watched the black-humour film ‘Oh What a Lovely War’ on TV last night with its running score sheet of ‘losses’ in the ‘games’ that the generals played in the War to end all Wars. The losses after 2 years of playing one game at the Somme were 607,000 dead on the English side alone for a nil gain of ground.
I guess it is that I yet again understood Richard’s desire to find a way to actually end wars and his radical understanding that, for this to be possible, both the good and bad feelings and emotions and instincts have to be eliminated.
Those men, after all, died for love of god, country and family. Their pride eventually disintegrated to the point where they simply shivered in their mud filled trenches, ridden with lice and listening to the rats feeding on the dead and wounded, singing endless choruses of ‘we’re here because we’re here because we’re here because we’re here ... we’re here because we’re here...’
IRENE: (...) I am so pleased with what I’ve done Peter, you have no idea... I couldn’t have envisaged this particular outcome ever. Wherever I am I am at peace and that’s all that I ever dreamed of anyway. I now find myself living what my very first peak-experience showed me to be my destiny. Its quality of atmosphere is here now, but according to the vision there is an abundant quantity to follow... and I am already so content with this abundance so far!!
I am a fully human being with all my feeling-faculties and instincts in tact, and free to live here in the most peaceful spot on earth, free to enjoy other people as they come with each showing me their endearing qualities and tell me about their hopes, their dreams, their goals, their loves and from time to time also their fears and vanities of course, but nothing to be afraid of or ashamed. Each and every one of these fears and vanities inevitably proves to be based on a conclusion that a certain type of people have agreed on, your type of people. ie. the people who have had an important influence in your character-forming, of course they could have very well been different types in different times through your life. They sought your influence and you thought theirs, so their conclusions (=opinions so far about aspects of human life on earth) you have allowed to influence your opinions so far and they did the same (only when there was an amicable mutual exchange of course).
It is very difficult to actively learn something from a person whom you don’t like and therefore you don’t expect to hear them say something worthwhile for you to listen to and even be influenced by, it’s easier to condemn them to the ‘hopeless case’ basket, or ridicule them, or avoid them out of fear. But it is equally easy to accept every word from a person you admire or like very much, to be correct at face value.
So you don’t have to be clever to deduce from the sources of your conclusions that they are built on, to say the least, ambiguous foundations, if not ambivalent ones. Armed with these conclusions you found the seeming solution for all these unresolved conflicts in yourself and decided to run for the jugular, that would cut off all of these conflicting emotions and instincts with one fell swoop, so you would never have to face yourself ever again and believing hard that you are therefore free of them.
Nobody can escape themselves forever, what’s not authentic must come out, unless you are superficial enough to content yourself with a veneer of hedonistic perfection, that can’t stand the slightest critique because it is so busy defending itself from being found out, any moment ... (...)
As an authentic being I am not afraid of others, nor of myself, because I have nothing to hide or to cover up any more, or to be afraid or ashamed of. I didn’t know that it would be so deliciously easy. (...)
PETER: Irene, I understand that you have given actual freedom your best shot and have found it wanting in the role you want to play in life. I keep going because I have a different (megalomaniacal, if you like) version of the whole scenario of the ‘play’. My play envisages humans playing in a world without wars, without domestic violence, rape and torture. With men and women living together in peace, harmony and equity. With sexual pleasure freed of guilt, shame, aggression and perversion. With no religious or territorial wars fought over right or might. With no police, no legal battles, no need for justice or retribution. Where everyone treats each other as fellow human beings and wishes well of each other. Where equanimity, co-operation, consensus and helpfulness are readily apparent in all interactions. Where the current money and effort used to fight wars and keep the ‘peace’ are used to bring the benefits, comforts and pleasures now possible for the few to all humans on the planet. Where care and consideration replace greed and avarice, ending pollution forever.
And it is not a dream, it is now possible for those who want to play the game of being a human being with a new script. All I have to do is become a new character and leave the old one behind. Or as Richard puts it
It is a brand new script and most will object and still play the game of malice and sorrow, but soon the other game will become more and more played. Seeing it as an obviously more sensible game people will eventually join with hardly a thought as to the old ‘survival’ script that they were wired to play. The game of survival is, at core, a grim game as I know it – like a ballet dancer with lead weights tied on the ankles, is how I described it in my journal.
PETER: I did enjoy hanging out with you the other day. Many laughs and a few reminiscences.
I liked it that we found so much in common in agreeing that any solution to the human dilemma must include an end to wars – peace on earth; that men and women have to live in peace and harmony, and we have to stop being ‘men’ and ‘women’ in separate camps.
You did strongly make the point that you felt that Richard, Vineeto and I (... to a lesser extent, you said) are confrontational in our writing to people. I did question whether it was not the content that people found offensive rather than the ‘style’.
Since you find what I write offensive to you I will stop. I learnt about 12 months ago that once someone says he or she is offended by what I say, then any further conversation on that particular subject is best avoided.
RESPONDENT: If there is a working model and an understanding of the main function of each component then I think it would be possible to extrapolate to create a rough picture of what happens.
PETER: The ‘working model’ we have for the process, at this stage, is Richard, and given his little ‘detour’ of finding himself in an Altered State of Consciousness as opposed to a pure consciousness state for some 11 years, his ‘picture of what happens’ is a bit distorted. There is, however, no doubt that Richard can report reliably on the end result of the process – the complete and utter extinction of both the psychological and psychic self – and that this extinction results in the complete elimination of the instinctual passions. Those currently following in his footsteps and utilizing his method are avoiding the delusion of an Altered State of Consciousness and, as such, their discoveries, experiences and writings give an accurate picture of the process in operation.
I also must admit to a lack of curiosity as to ‘how’ it all happens – I am more interested in the fact that it is now possible for it to happen. Of even more vital interest is that it is happening to me – that I can be free of the instinctual animal passions of malice and sorrow that accompany the self – the alien entity within this flesh and blood body.
I watched a television interview with Douglas Adams – the author of the ‘Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy’. I pricked up my ears when he said that the major issue that human beings are presently facing was the ‘battle between instincts and intelligence’. But within a few sentences he was proclaiming the popularist belief that ‘our survival is threatened by our instinctual behaviour in that we are wiping out endangered species and that only intelligent action will save us’. Not a word about our instinctual behaviour towards each other, such as war, rape, torture, genocide, murder ... let alone despair, depression, loneliness, suicide ...
It is only those who acknowledge that they feel malicious, murderous, revengeful, resentful, sad, depressed, lonely, despairing, etc., – and want to do something about it – who will be interested in Actual Freedom.
Now that the neuro-biological scientific evidence is becoming available, it will be up to each of us what we do with it – whether we continue to ignore or escape from it, or get up off our bums and do something.
PETER: You wrote to No 14 a note of such breathtaking duplicity that I am moved (as in ... up off the couch) to reply before all the spiritualists on this list start to declare Rajneesh and other similar God-men to be actually free from the Human Condition. Still people do believe that Jesus walked on water, that the planets influence their moods and the sun goes around the earth. It’s just that this list is about facts and actuality – and not fiction, hopeful imagination, wishful thinking, slippery re-interpretation, Ancient Wisdom or ‘Truth’.
RESPONDENT to No 14: I did not get this PCE stuff on this list in the beginning. I kept thinking about it for a while. For weeks I would get stuck on 2-3 experiences which stood out and seemed close to the way PCE was being described here. The first PCE happened to me after I did rigorous dynamic everyday for 2 months. This PCE happened 2 ½ years ago. I also noticed that for last 2 ½ years, I have always wanted to repeat that experience. I have had some much tinier ones but nothing compared to the first one.
Now I understand the whole thing about PCE. Osho created situations in which we could get PCEs and hence have a bench mark to work with. While Richard is asking us to remember a PCE, defined with a description, to take it as a bench mark.
PETER: It does seem a waste of all that thinking time to have come to the conclusion that there is a God after all, and that Rajneesh is your God. Still Humanity’s obsession with believing the fairy-tales of the God-men is both legendary and endemic and has been around for thousands of years. This is the very beginning of a new down-to-earth non-spiritual Actual Freedom and, as such, will not be for all. It does take a certain courage, tenacity, stubbornness and bloody-mindedness to strike off on one’s own to discover and investigate.
So, let’s look at your preposterous proposition that ‘Rajneesh created situations where we could get PCEs’. (...)
Let’s dig a little deeper and see the extent of his delusion. Again a quote from the man himself –
Cute Hey. With a leap of imagination he is no longer responsible for his actions even to the point of killing. He becomes quite literally ‘above’ the mundane, the ordinary, the laws, the earthly, the sensate. One leaves the wheel of suffering, or earthly existence and transcends. This ‘lofty perch’ of the God-man has relevance in the Sannyas world as to his denial of any wrong doing in Rajneeshpuram – not that the American law courts believed him. No. 14 will recognize the dis-association of Rajneesh from any of his actions as identical to the position taken by Zen warriors in the ritual slaughter of 300,000 Chinese at Nanking – enthusiastically supported by the Buddhist Masters.
In case you are confused about the word ‘transcend’, Mr Oxford’s definition is –
Indeed Mr. Rajneesh has transcended the ego – he has clearly become an ego-maniac in that he thinks and feels himself to be God. An ego transcended gives full reign to the soul – the ‘feelings’ – and delusion is the obvious result.
RESPONDENT: As for facts. I was not asking for facts in the forms of Osho’s quotes.
PETER: You were not asking for facts at all. You were simply trying to fob me off and dismiss any further conversation on the matter. Personally I considered Rajneesh’s quote very relevant to our conversation as it points to his ‘unique’ contribution to Ancient Wisdom. His whole approach to the perennial problem of human instinctual passions was to summarily condemn those who attempted to suppress them and taught that to express them would enable a miraculous transcendence. Thus one was encouraged to indulge in sex in order to transcend sexual passion with the aim of becoming celibate. Similarly with anger, one was actively encouraged to express one’s anger in groups or dynamic meditation or in being ‘honest’ with others – all in order to achieve for oneself the blissful state of Enlightenment. Peace on earth was not, and is not, an issue – one’s own utterly selfish achievement of an Altered State of Consciousness was of singular importance. Hence peace on earth was readily sacrificed for a state of Enlightenment on earth and a mythical afterlife – after physical death. Which is the very point of this conversation.
PETER: As I was sending off my last post to you I noticed that you had posted an attachment to your letter which I had missed. I was preparing to reply to you and re-read my previous post to see where the conversation had reached. I noticed a quality in my writing that I had not noticed before and when I mulled over it I would describe it as one of frustration. I was frustrated that one of the few people who had read Richard’s Journal and ‘would recommend it to others’, who had not only been on the mailing list for some 10 months but was willing to write as well, was still coming up with objections to being happy and harmless. Not only objections but applying shifting conditions as to what, how and who any discussions should be about. So, I saw the cause of my frustration – feeling ‘bound’ by your conditions – and seen that it had caused me to have a ‘force’ in my writing that could cause ripples.
I am not talking of being meek or mild in the face of criticism, belligerence, deviousness, deception, denial, or even downright abuse – all of which I have had in most discussions that dare to question Ancient Wisdom. T’is no small thing to stand up and say everyone has got it 180 degrees wrong – all 6 billion people – and then provide the evidence that this is so. As I remarked on the Sannyas list, if I would have said outside the Ashram gates what I was saying on the list, I would have been stoned to death rather than the modern, much safer version of cyber-execution.
No, the ripples I am talking of are the type that I may cause – ripples that result from my anger, frustration, peeved-ness, resentment, annoyance, impatience, etc.
I wrote about it my journal –
Being a good, kind-hearted, moral and ‘caring’ man at the time it was difficult for me to see this behaviour in myself, or even acknowledge that this was ‘me’ in action, let alone want to put an end to it. For the ending of anger – causing ripples – is the ending of ‘me’. I used the term ‘causing ripples’ in my journal deliberately for I was nearly always able to control my anger – and most other emotions – and, as such, have not indulged in fights or violent acts, let alone verbal arguments, competitive sports, etc. I was a S.N.A.G., a wimp, a pacifist, a nice guy. When I came across Richard and his journal it was the harmless in ‘happy and harmless’ that was really appealing, for I knew that although I was a nice guy I could not honestly say I was harmless. In all my relationships, I knew that was as much the cause of dis-harmony as the other.
The challenge of Actual Freedom was obvious – if I, an ordinary normal human being, could become actually harmless then peace on earth was possible. If I could totally eradicate all anger in me – that would be the proof, as simple as that. The situation that mostly brought up anger in me – in whatever form, and no matter how subtle – was in relationships with women; so I used that as my test of fire, so to speak. When that was successful, the ante was serendipitously upped by writing on the Sannyas list, and when that was successful – along came No 5. Which only goes to prove that Virtual Freedom is virtual as in 99.9%.
PETER to No 7: As a human on the planet, at this time, we clearly see that much of the essential explorations have been undertaken in order to provide comfort, shelter, food and safety from wild animals and that the next major exploration and effort will be to end ‘man’s inhumanity to man’. Many people are still seeking excitement, fame, meaning and a sense of purpose by physical exploring and adventure pursuits but it has got a bit ridiculous such that it comes as no surprise to hear of someone being the first to hop all the way to the north pole or being the first woman to circumnavigate the globe the wrong way in a bath tub. Many people are now devoting there lives to helping wild animals survive, having abandoned the post-WW2 hope of peace on earth for humans. The focus has shifted to the fashionable ‘saving the earth’ rather than saving the human species.
An actualist is one who devotes his or her life to actualizing peace on earth in the only way possible and gets to have the adventure of a lifetime on the way. It is the most significant thing one can do with one’s life – one’s ‘three score and ten’ of existence as a human being.
Then whatever goes ‘on and on’ is not of my concern, for I will have done my bit for peace on earth.
This whole business of becoming free of the Human Condition is to do with the doing of it. At present it still remains but a nice theory, proposed by someone who can still be rightly labelled as a freak of nature as in – ‘an abnormal or irregular occurrence, an abnormally developed person or thing’. It is now up to others to prove – for themselves – that it is possible for them to be free from the Human Condition.
T’is about quality not quantity, the individual not the group, facts not belief, actualization not theory.
Of course the process works, but it only works for those doing it. Even a Virtual Freedom is to live beyond normal human expectations and would be sufficient to bring peace to this fair planet. But to go all the way is always the only way – stopping at ‘base camp’ is not for the true adventurer.
Well, thanks again for your note. I do appreciate your interest in these matters and in taking the effort to write. For me, it is good opportunity to write more about the practical application of Actual Freedom and to put my experience and knowledge down in writing.
The Human Condition – the program in the brain that says this is how it is to be a human being – does take a lot of stubborn questioning, and a lot of deleting, in order to get one’s common sense or innate intelligence operating for the first time. But once it is fired up and begins to function the fun begins – it proves unstoppable, and then the sparks start flying and the fun begins as one becomes incrementally free of belief, superstition, morals, ethics, values and psittacisms. This incremental freedom from sorrow and malice results in increasing experiences of delight and peace, and one soon finds oneself willing raising the bar ...again ... and again.
PETER: Before I move on to your post, I want to report on TV program I saw the other day which has some relevance to our discussions on the list. It was a program relating to ‘diseases’ that afflict humans and looked at the more modern diseases, ie. those of the 20th century.
The program began by looking at ‘shell shock’ – the traumatic condition suffered by soldiers in the First World War. Most soldiers refusing to fight were threatened with execution and, indeed, many were summarily executed by their own officers in the trenches while others were hauled before firing squads. Those who managed to get a medical certificate were those exhibiting a chronic form usually involving total and uncontrollable shaking and complete incoherence.
The comment was made that little could be done for them as this was a new disease with few precedents. By the time the Second World War had ended and the Vietnam War was in progress a little more attention was being paid to both the medical and psychiatric needs of soldiers in war. The Vietnam War, particularly, resulted in a re-naming of the trauma of war from ‘shell shock’ to ‘Post Traumatic Stress Syndrome’.
The program went on to talk a bit about counselling, ‘due recognition’, medication, therapy and the like that was used as treatment for what was increasingly regarded as a psychiatric condition. The program then flitted on to talk about another of the modern diseases, repetitive strain injury (RSI) in computer operators.
I found myself bewildered that we should regard the effects of war on the surviving participants as a disease while no mention was made of the disease of warfare itself. Surely we need to classify the eager predilection of human beings to inflict violence upon each other as a disease and set out post-haste to find a cure. The past one hundred years have been the bloodiest and most sadistic in human history with the art and science of violence and killing reaching new levels of ruthless efficiency. The Japanese were the last to attempt to hold on to killing as an art form when for 200 years, from the16th century to the18th century, the Emperor banned guns in favour of killing by sword – the noble Warrior art of killing was preferred. The First World War saw the last of noble chivalry and a move towards a more scientific and ruthlessly efficiency in mass killing. The Second World War had as many civilian casualties as soldier casualties, as wholesale aerial bombing became the preferred form of retaliation and retribution. The cruise missile that literally cruised past the CNN reporter in the Gulf War before turning left at the next intersection on its way to the target represents the epitome of modern warfare – elegant efficiency.
We deplore warfare, blame others for it, seek to define rights and wrongs, goods and evils, seek peace treaties as ceasefires, pray for peace, meditate to raise the ‘cosmic consciousness’ – or turn away in despair that the violence and suffering will ever end.
But nobody asks themselves what is the cause of violence and what can I realistically do about it. Defying God’s will and meddling with blind nature seems a good start to me – all else has clearly failed.
PETER: So, on to your post –
As for ‘The universe will experience itself in them, thus this ‘experiencing’ will go on and on.’ – it seems that you are attributing to the physical universe anthropomorphic and/or anthropocentric values. There is a common belief that attributes to the physical universe the divine values that were once attributed to individual human-like Gods or the forces of nature type Gods. Thus the earth becomes Mother Earth and the universe becomes Intelligent. I recently saw some film footage of the Apollo moon program where the astronaut described the surface of the moon as like a barren desert made of grey beach sand. They looked back at earth awed by the magnificence of a planet obviously abundant with life. As stunning as the images produced of far distant nebulae, galaxies and the like may be, there is no evidence of carbon-based life anywhere else in the universe, let alone anything as intelligent as the human brain.
RESPONDENT: What I meant by saying that was that there will be, with a high dose of certainty, humans living here after we are gone.
PETER: Oh, yeah? You do realize that the current new set of ‘tribal groups’ who are developing and acquiring nuclear weapons and long-range missiles are those whose passionate beliefs include re-incarnation and holy wars. They care not a fig for their own personal existence on earth let alone anyone else’s. For most an exit is a welcome relief and if this exit is for a noble or holy cause – even better. I would say that there is ‘a high dose of certainty’ that the MAD (mutually agreed destruction) policy of the cold war will eventuate in some other insane form, unless ...
Unless sufficient people devote their lives to breaking free from the instinctual program of fear and aggression that gives rise to the Human Condition of sorrow and malice.
You could regard Actual Freedom as sensibly planning your exit from the world of fear and aggression for a spurt in the actual world of purity and perfection, before the final exit when your heart stops pumping blood and the brain dies.
RESPONDENT: A little bit long Quotation from ‘Nirvana The Last Nightmare’ by Osho Rajneesh.
PETER: Just a note on your post of one of Mr. Mohan Rajneesh’s talks. I will stick to his starting theme which was idealism and, in an effort to be brief, concentrate on a few salient points –
Curious stuff from a Guru who’s central message, the inspirational core of his teachings, is that his followers are the New Man – Zorba the Buddha. To quote the same man –
So ... peace will come to earth when the New Man arrives! Now if we translate this bit of idealism into down-to-earth language it means ‘when everybody follows Rajneesh’s teachings’ there will be peace on earth. Given he has a following of less than 100,000 out of 6,000,000,000 people on the planet and that the whole religion is in a watered-down decline, peace will again remain a promised ideal with no possible chance to eventuate. Rajneeshism is merely yet another of the sixteen hundred religions on the planet, all competing for market-share. It would be rather amusing except so much of the competition results in armed conflict such as was evidenced in the last days of the Rajneeshpuram when Rajneeshees went ‘head-to-head’ with the Christians. When the big boys of the Religions go head-to-head the most horrendous wars eventuate.
The interesting thing is that none of Rajneesh’s followers cares ‘two bob’ about the New Man or peace on earth as is evidenced by my discussions on their mailing list. See No 6 , and No 9 , No 12 and No 32. Such is their cynical disregard for his teachings. They know he spoke twaddle, they know he was full of contradictions and inaccuracies and know it was just idealistic humbug. Humans really just desperately want someone or something to believe in – and anybody and anything will do.
‘You ARE perfect’ is the delusion of the spiritual view-point. The spiritual world is in complete denial of the modern discoveries of the fact that we are not ‘perfect’ – that we have an in-built instinctual survival program of fear, aggression, nurture and desire that inevitably causes us to live in fear and to be aggressive. It is this fact that prevents peace on earth, not the failure to live the – unliveable – spiritual ideal that if only we ‘all follow one God and one God only’ and then all will be magically okay, one day, in the future. When I finally stopped deluding myself that this insanity was going to bring peace to earth, and when I stopped being dishonest with myself in believing that I was ‘already perfect’, was I able to do something about becoming actually perfect.
RESPONDENT: For personal peace and world peace.
PETER: Now hang on. How can you be ‘for personal peace’, when you are on the spiritual path and aspire to Enlightenment? You do know that the Enlightened Ones are driven in their Divine mission to spread their message, that they are desperately trying to attract followers, that they often have weird bodily experiences, that they can’t have a normal down-to-earth companionship with anyone, that they are constantly adored, worshipped, coddled and feted, that they ‘suffer’ for Humanity and their disciples, and that they have a mentally-diagnosable massive delusion of self-aggrandizement whereby they are convinced that they are God and that they are Immortal. Doesn’t sound at all peaceful to me.
And as for ‘world peace’, you are a self-confessed, certified, name-carrying Sannyasin of a dead Master. That makes you a man of Religion, and a true and faithful man of Religion will always kill or die for his particular God. It is ‘par for the course’. As you yourself said on this list – ‘I am completely surrendered to him with my whole being’. People are always ready and willing to kill and die for their Faith, as hundreds and hundreds of millions have done already and are still doing so.
I noticed that you said to Alan that Japanese people are atheists, yet millions fought and died for their Emperor who, unless I am wrong, they regarded as a living God. These are facts that I am writing, this is not some belief of mine. This is all well documented, proudly trumpeted, written in books, recorded on film, video and tape. Historical archives, libraries all over the world, the Net, the Holy scriptures, the discourses, all attest to these facts. Given that you are a Sannyasin, and that you are for world peace, you obviously believe in Rajneesh’s ideal that world peace will come when everyone in the world becomes one of ‘his people’. Not Christians, not Buddhists, not Hindus, not Jains, but Sannyasins. This means that all the other religions will have to magically disappear somehow. To quote Rajneesh –
So, I suggest you start recruiting and converting, if you really are for the Rajneesh version of world peace.
But should you want to be pragmatic, realistic, down-to-earth, astute, sensible, reasonable, informed and discerning instead of being spiritual then there is another alternative ...
I see that you are interested in the idea of peace and being happy and harmless yet you are not at all interested in Actual Freedom, the practical way to achieve both. I’ll try to explain again what we are on about, although it appears that I am ‘flogging a dead horse, as they say –
Maybe another way of looking at it is that all we humans are engaged in a big play called ‘being human beings on earth’. It’s our first time in the play, so we look to the others who are already playing to learn the rules and regulations.
Now when we enter the game we find the whole scenario of the play is already written and the name of the game is ‘It’s a dog eat dog world, life’s a bitch and then you die’. Given that it is a tough and miserable game, our main interest and constant obsession is self-preservation, survival, come what may. As such our underlying traits are that we are fearful and suspicious of all the other characters in the play and that we will fight for our rights and our life, come what may. We also find that we have to be members of a tribe to survive and, as such, we are taught the remainder of our script – the particular character role that we play within our tribe. We are further told that it is impossible to leave the protection of the tribe or you will die, and unless you constantly keep fighting for your survival you will die – no letting up, or letting your guard down. In a game like this ... no wonder we feel lost, lonely frightened and very, very cunning.
But what if you found some players who told you – you can play the game without having to be a tribe member, and without the constant fear of survival? What if you could re-write your particular script in the play? And it is not a dream, it is now possible for those who want to, to play the game of being a human being with a new script. All you have to do is to leave your old character behind. Or as Richard puts it ‘step out of the real world into the actual world and leave your ‘self’ behind’. It is a brand new script and most will object and still play the game of malice and sorrow, but soon the other game will become more and more played. Seeing it as an obviously more sensible game people will eventually join in with hardly a thought as to the old ‘survival’ script that they were wired to play. The game of survival is, at core, a grim game as we know it – 160,000,000 killed in wars this century alone, not to mention all the murders, rapes, ethnic cleansing, sectarian violence, tortures, domestic violence and suicides. The new play eventually would see humans playing in a world without wars, without domestic violence, rape and torture. With men and women living together in peace, harmony and equity. With sexual pleasure freed of guilt, shame, aggression and perversion. With no religious or territorial wars fought over right or might. With no police, no legal battles, no need for justice or retribution. Where everyone treats each other as fellow human beings and wishes well of each other. Where equanimity, co-operation, consensus and helpfulness are readily apparent in all interactions. Where the current money and effort used to fight wars and keep the ‘peace’ are used to bring the benefits, comforts and pleasures now possible for the few to all humans on the planet. Where care and consideration replace greed and avarice, ending pollution forever...
We actualists are simply saying – stop believing what the other players tell you is your fated script and stop believing that the rules of the game can never be changed. That it is possible for individual players to delete the old, ancient and decrepit, survival program in its entirety and to now run on the sensible and sensate, stripped-down version, free of malice and sorrow. One can now become free of the Human Condition of malice and sorrow, if you want to make the effort.
RESPONDENT: I have said that if the meaning of surrender is gratitude. And I will not kill or die for my Faith.
PETER: What you said was –
So we can now add ‘but not enough to kill or die for Him’.
This is indicative of what happened to Sannyas and Sannyasins after the end of the Ranch. You may remember that Rajneesh was raging against the Christians at the time and to quote him –
Outrages like these, combined with poisonings, buggings, arson, vote stacking, etc. caused a situation where armed conflict became a distinct and very real possibility. There were a number of police and FBI investigations under way and the National Guard was reportedly on stand-by. Both sides were armed and ready. Rajneeshees were armed and deliberately invited the press in to show off their weapons and training. In the end, Rajneesh flew the coup, so the situation was diffused, but it shook many people’s faith to the point that many dropped Sannyas, became disillusioned or ‘watered down’ their faith – exactly as you seem to have done. The end of the Ranch indeed ‘scared the shit’ out of many disciples.
PETER: I noticed that you said to Alan that Japanese people are atheists, yet millions fought and died for their Emperor who, unless I am wrong, they regarded as a living God. These are facts that I am writing, this is not some belief of mine.
RESPONDENT: I was born after the world war Second, and have learned the Emperor was a just fellow human being who was responsible for the War.
PETER: So, in the case of Japan in the war, it was the Emperor who was responsible. I take it that aspires to the popular theory that it is evil leaders who cause wars. It does seem a little simplistic to me and to directly fly in the face of many studies and many documented accounts of the apparent ‘delight’ in killing and blood-lust that happens in wars. The Buddhists at Nanking seemed not to have been forcibly driven to serve the Emperor. Were they not proud to kill and be killed? This is the whole point of surrender, love, gratitude, service, devotion, loyalty – and the supreme test (particularly for the male of the species) is his willingness to lay down his life for his beliefs, for his ideals.
On the Sannyas list I said I was probably willing to ‘defend’ the Ranch and Rajneesh to the point of killing, and I said ‘probably’, only because it is a hypothetical question. I got howled down for saying so, which I took as sheer hypocrisy on the part of most.
RESPONDENT: And I have said my disciplehood is different from your definition. (...) I wonder why you are so stick to your definition of it.
PETER: I am vitally concerned with peace on earth and see no sense at all in people sitting silently hoping it will happen by itself, or by some mythical Divine intervention. I see a great deal of sense in questioning and investigating the reasons that we humans live in misery and suffering and, despite our well-meaning efforts to date, continue to inflict misery and suffering on each other. For the discussion to be meaningful, a common agreed definition of words is essential and the vital interest of both parties is essential. A vital interest in peace on earth is necessary for anyone to at all consider an Actual Freedom rather than continuing on the selfish, self-centred and Self-gratifying spiritual path of denial and fantasy. One either stays in the Human Condition or actively and rigorously pursues an actual freedom from its insidious grip. There is now a choice, a third alternative, for those who want it.
RESPONDENT: I just want to know how you think my disciple-hood is a blind belief and the hindrance to be happy and harmless in our communications in specific.
PETER: So according to your rules of discussion, I am not allowed to discuss disciple-hood, the spiritual path or religion in general but I have to answer your question ‘in specific’. You insist on either ignoring or avoiding any comment I have made specifically about Rajneesh and his ‘peace on earth’ dream which I thought was getting reasonably specific to your disciple-hood of ‘seeing the possibility in Rajneesh’.
Your style seems to be to tie both my hands behind my back, stuff a gag in my mouth and see if I can still type by banging my nose on the keyboard – and then declare I haven’t answered your question. As I said in my last post you have to have a problem, a doubt, a concern before you have a question, let alone be willing to listen or attempt to understand any answer given
I also said in my last post –
Being a disciple of a spiritual Master or God-man, as you have declared yourself to be, clearly puts you (specifically) in the group of ‘people sitting silently hoping it will happen by itself, or by some mythical Divine intervention’ – meaning Rajneesh’s intervention. How can I be more specific?
Millions of people are suffering the stupefying horrors and atrocities of wars this very moment and all they have been able to date is pray to imaginary Gods, or believe the fairy stories of demented God-men, that ‘one day’ there will be peace. It’s time to put our store in human intelligence, for there is obviously no such thing as Divine Intelligence – any sensible reading of the inane fairy-stories of the Sacred Texts will soon attest to that.
Of course, it means abandoning our belief in an after-life, but how else can one fully be here, doing what is happening.
100% committed to being here, in this very actual world, as a sensate, thinking and reflective, flesh and blood body – without any ‘self’ whatsoever.
RESPONDENT: What a puny price to pay for personal peace and peace on earth.
And as for your question, sure I want to become free of sorrow and malice. I am vitally concerned with my personal peace and peace on earth.
PETER: I don’t doubt your sincerity in wanting and being vitally concerned, many humans are. It is the source of our deepest sorrow when we become aware of our instinctual willingness to inflict suffering upon each other.
I’m just being busy trying to tell you that there is another alternative to blindly following what everyone has been trying for thousands of years and which obviously hasn’t worked, isn’t working, and never will work.
If you want to put your faith and trust in the past failed efforts, then fine. If you want to find out about an alternative, there is only one way – for you to find out for yourself. And there is only one way to do that – read about it.
PETER: Anyone can peddle a dream, an ideal, a possibility and people will flock and join in. Anyone, be it an Emperor, a Dictator, a Revolutionary, a Faith Healer, a scientist or a Guru. An excellent study known as the Milgram Experiments was conducted which documented this very willingness to believe, and willingness to follow, and I have written about it in the Peace chapter of my journal
It is fascinating that this particular line of study was stopped as being ‘unethical’! We either deny our instinctual malice (bury our heads in the sand) or seek refuge in fairy tales (stick our heads in the clouds). But everyone, be they ‘normal’ or ‘spiritual’, manages to shift doing something about peace on earth by blaming someone else. Looking forward to your comments...
RESPONDENT: I see. I think the only way to peace on earth is peace on person at first. But I don’t agree with that ‘everyone’, be they ‘normal’ or ‘spiritual’, manages to shift doing something about peace on earth by blaming someone else. I think not everyone.
PETER: Okay – tell me who. Even the pacifists run on the theory of ‘if only everyone stopped fighting ...’, and those who march and demonstrate for peace do so at angry rallies. There are curiously those like the Buddhists monks in Vietnam who will suicide for peace but few who are willing to change radically, completely and irrevocably to actually eliminate sorrow and malice within themselves.
Still it’s early years and this is new and radical.
But, you have found the very place, the very mailing list, at the right time, for we actualists recognize and acknowledge the factual source of fear and aggression – and we have a proven method for its eradication.
I couldn’t take it all in at the start – the enormity of being able to be free of the Human Condition and its radical consequences for the human species. I just figured someone has to do it – and why not me? Richard was just a normal human being, a boy from the farm, as he puts it, and I had the necessary qualifications – I was just a normal human being, a boy from the suburbs, I could say.
RESPONDENT: I remember someone explaining that to save an endangered species one needed to exploit the species commercially, to ensure its survival. An unconvincing argument for anyone interested in the species’ quality of life, but it had a pragmatic kind of logic.
PETER: I think there is no doubt that the human species is an endangered species but not from external threat, nor from any ‘environmental’ disaster or earth resources’ depletion, but from the simple fact that human beings cannot live together in anything remotely resembling peace and harmony. As a practicalist, when I came across Richard, I chose to disprove the logic of Ancient Wisdom that you can’t change Human Nature. Otherwise a human existence of perpetual malice and sorrow is indeed a sick joke. I saw in a PCE that the universe is too magnificent, too grand, too perfect and too pure for me to continue to be sorrowful and malicious. So I set out to change the only thing that was wrong – as in silly and senseless – and that was a ‘me’ inside this flesh and blood body.
As for ‘endangered species’, I realized I was not alone in this exercise of seeking peace on earth. It is an almost universal hope and wish, but everyone looks to others to bring it about, to actualize it. Peace on earth is already here, of course, and only you can find it for yourself. A bit from my journal –
RESPONDENT: Benevolent living, concern for all and quality of life improves because of, and in spite of, Human Nature.
Warring, vicious and malicious behaviour is on the decline in this new millennium, in this perfectly improving perfect universe. Why? Because it doesn’t work as a life style in most cases. People eventually are learning.
PETER: There is a good deal of factual information and statistics available that document the fact that the last century was the bloodiest to date. Given the present millennium is only two months old, I think it is too early to document a decline and I see no reason to predict a decline, given the natural predilection of human beings to fight and feud with each other and their on-going blatant state of denial of their animal instinctual passions.
War deaths have risen dramatically in the 20th century.
There is no information available for number of deaths per 1,000 people in the 1st-15th centuries. 20th century data is up to 1995.
(Source: William Eckhardt, ‘War-Related Deaths Since 3000 BC,’ Bulletin of Peace Proposals, December 1991 and Ruth Leger Sivard, World Military and Social Expenditures 1996)
The universe is perfect, infinite and eternal – it is not ‘perfectly improving’, for it would have to be less than perfect in order to improve. What is less than perfect are human beings and this is only so because they insist that human nature is indeed Human Nature – a set-in-concrete inviolate condition epitomized by malice and sorrow.
In many places on the planet a degree of what is termed civilization is imposed by strict enforcement of a moral, ethical and legal code reinforced and maintained by police and armies, lawyers and judges, fines and jails, Gurus and priests, etc. In these places, war, rape, murder and torture is kept to a tolerable minimum and human malice and sorrow is evidenced in more cunning and subtle ways such as corruption, fighting for causes and rights, innuendo, gossip, sad and violent entertainment, etc.
All this is accepted as a life style – to be the best one can be within the Human Condition is a poor second-rate life whereby an actual freedom is sacrificed in order to remain part of Humanity, the fighting and feuding mob. To feel above it all, or to feel superior to others, is a poor substitute to stepping out of it all. The Human Condition has been on-going for thousands of years and there is no sign of any change eventuating. This is particularly so given the current fashion of denial and acceptance of ‘ Human Nature’ that masquerades as some sort of wisdom or means to cope with life as-it-is.
PETER: Hi everyone,
Another ‘new millennium’ message that is worth thinking about –
His Holiness the 14th Dalai Lama’s (the incarnated Avalokitesvara, the Buddha of Compassion, the Holy Lord, the Gentle Glory, the Compassionate, the Defender of the Faith, the Ocean of Wisdom, the Wish-fulfilling Gem) New Millennium Message
With Wisdom like that, let’s not hold our breathe for peace on earth. I saw him on television recently saying the next century should be the ‘century of dialogue’. Fighting with words instead of guns is obviously regarded as the best Humanity can hope to achieve in the next century. The letters to the editor page of the local newspaper where I live are increasingly full of vitriol, and most often from the ‘really-aware’ crowd. More and more people are turning to lawyers, courts and tribunals to fight others or seek retribution so the fashion for standing up for oneself, defending one’s rights – or sharing one’s truth – represents an escalation in malice, not a diminishing.
What happened in Tibet is a classic case of the ideal of non-violence in action. The Good and Holy Leader and his lackeys took the money and fled in the face of aggression, abandoning the ordinary people to their fate. The D.L went to seek shelter behind the Indian army, leaving those behind with no means to defend themselves. Pacifism is like hanging up a sign at the border saying please invade or a sign on your front door saying the doors open, help yourself...
To put one’s faith in the ideal of non-violence is to stubbornly remain in ignorance of the source of violence within the Human Condition.
Contrast the above piece of wishful thinking with an item that cropped up recently –
So, a bit of ancient spiritual denial and transcendence contrasted with the dawning of scientific recognition of the facts about the Human Condition. The psychologists all say the instincts are ‘hard-wired’, for to contemplate and investigate further to even consider that they are only software would be devastating to their professional pride and their very livelihood. A bit like the Dalai Lama saying we should stop believing in God because he doesn’t exist and stop attempting to embellish the ‘positive emotions’ because it won’t bring an end to malice and sorrow – not only livelihood threatening in his case but threatening his reincarnation as well.
The Dalai Lama often cites a favourite inspirational verse, found in the writings of the renowned 8th century Buddhist saint Shantideva:
Sounds as though he would be out of a job if human suffering came to an end. It’s called ‘having a vested interest’ in supporting and maintaining human misery. No misery – no need for the Buddha of Compassion. (...)
P.S. The leader of the strongest country in the world, Mr. Clinton, gave his ‘new millennium’ message saying that ‘we human beings need to have dreams that are stronger than our memories’. In other words, let us all try to forget the fact that the last century was the bloodiest to date and dream for some miraculous peace in the next century.
Yet, despite the religious prayers and unrealizable dreaming, the facts are –
War deaths have risen dramatically in the 20th century.
*There is no information available for number of deaths per 1,000 people in the 1st-15th centuries.
**20th century data is up to 1995.
RESPONDENT: That’s one of the hard ones (for me), Peter. Throwing love away. That and two other aspects of human existence. The imagination of course, a concern I expressed in my first post to the List and the closing of the book on all other possibilities except actualism.
Love, still reveals its actual effects to me in everything that happens in my life, so *if* it is but a shallow insubstantial dual belief and instinctual passion, then I have much investigating left to do, so please be patient with me.
PETER: The only reason I dared to challenge the most sacred of all feelings was that I found it did not work, it always came hand-in-glove with its savage dark side and ... I wanted something better. I’ve found it.
RESPONDENT: Imagination, still reveals its actual effects to me in everything I do. It is how I make a living as a designer.
PETER: I came to realize how limited human imagination is when I began to look at the Human Condition from a wider perspective.
Most of what humans treasure as great literature, art, poetry, sacred texts, music, fables and legends has as their basis either malice or sorrow. Most of what we regard as entertainment is based on violence or sadness. The test of greatness of human imaginative stories is the extent that we are stirred to feel vengeful for the aggrieved, pity for the underdog, saddened at loss, moved by hardship, outraged by the offensive, angered at the hard done by, stimulated by violence, distressed by suffering, etc.
I also came to see that impassioned human imagination was so meagre and paltry when compared to inventiveness, resourcefulness and ingenuity of the electro-chemical brain that is the human body. One only needs to look out at the stars at night to know that what is actual far, far exceeds human impassioned imagination. And yet when cosmologists contemplate the universe they imagine black holes and dark matter – an escape portal to other worlds or some ‘other-universe’ within this universe. This planet is estimated to have between 2,000,000 and 4,500,00 plant and animal species, offering such a variety as to be mind-boggling when compared with the fantasy alien life-forms from outer space created by human imagination. The insect world has such a plethora of species that it may well be an impossible task to ever categorize them. The oceans provide such an amazing multiplicity of life forms that defy any limits of human imagination. Each day brings a new, fresh and unique combination of weather conditions, each moment animate life is arranging and rearranging itself into a myriad of new forms, and this occurs on a paradisiacal planet that is so huge that it is impossible for a single human being to see all of it in a lifetime. The fact that the astounding actuality of this infinite physical universe is beyond the comprehension of a ‘self’-centred human mind has lead to wonder and amazement which has traditionally lead to feelings of awe and reverence and humility – the seeds of the spiritual ‘Universe and I are One’ delusion.
Actuality is far, far bigger than mere feelings or impassioned imagination for it is actual, patently palpable, infinitely varied, observably tangible, manifestly obvious, always apparent, clearly evident, eternally existing and it is happening right here and right now, under our very noses as it were.
RESPONDENT: But to me peace on earth and actually being happy and harmless must take precedence in a human life if we are to live life fully and survive successfully as a species.
PETER: Yep. 160 million died in wars in the last century, an estimated 40 million committed suicide, not to mention all the murders, rapes, torture, corruption, despair, loneliness, domestic violence, child abuse ... and there is no end in sight. It’s clearly time for intelligence to be freed of its burden of the animal survival instincts so we humans can live in utter peace and harmony, perfection and purity. (...)
PETER: It is an instinct-fuelled emotion that only exists in the heads and hearts of human beings. There is no love or hate in a tree, a keyboard, a cloud, a coffee cup.
RESPONDENT: And of course when presenting this analogy to any human being, not only those relentlessly inquiring into the human condition, their first response is, but for heaven’s sake! A human being is not a tree, a keyboard, a cloud, a coffee cup! Most of us consider mental activity and emotions as a whole new dimension on earth that we have barely explored. There is so much to investigate, to reflect on, before the human psyche can come to the conclusion that there is no alternative, that its death and extinction is the only way to bring happiness and harmlessness to humanity.
PETER: Yep. Human mental activity and emotion has resulted in an estimated 160 million deaths in wars in the last century, over 40 million suicides, not to mention all the murders, rapes, torture, corruption, despair, loneliness, domestic violence, child abuse ... and there is no end in sight. It’s clearly time for intelligence to be freed of its burden of the animal survival instincts so we humans who want to can live in utter peace and harmony, perfection and purity. Only if you want to, of course, for there is no imperative in Actual Freedom. The universe, being infinite and eternal, has all the time in the world. It was only by abandoning any notion of a life after death, or there being a ‘somewhere else’, could I muster sufficient impatience and urgency to overcome my lethargy.
Peter’s & Richard’s Text ©The Actual Freedom Trust: 1997-. All Rights Reserved.