Vineeto’s Correspondence on the Actual Freedom List
VINEETO: Hi Irene,
IRENE: As you have been sending me your last responses to Konrad, I take it as an invitation from you to ask my opinion, even though in our last visit we had come to the conclusion that you and Peter were actually not interested in me; pooh-poohing my every opinion with the words: ‘That’s only your opinion’. <snip>
Yet I did not flee, Richard’s solution to mankind, as I now see it as deviating from our original goal: not for some of us but for all of us. You are not yet aware of it, you are displaying the classical symptoms of disciplehood – although I must commend you on your sincere devotion to Richard’s method! – like your zeal in defending Richard (as the originator of your newly adopted practical life philosophy) and yourself plus attacking anybody who still questions it or has pointed out the flaws in it. The typical ‘us and them’ scenario that you would remember from following your other masters. And then of course the inevitable proselytising that goes hand in hand with being a ‘born again’ human being; <snip> Another classic is renouncing all the old indiscriminately. I know it well from very personal experience and I don’t expect you (yet) to be open to me being correct, as I wasn’t either when I was so busy proving that it worked so deliciously ... for 11 years. <snip>
Perhaps you could ask yourselves: why do most people lose interest in spending time in our company? and Why do I feel the need to proselytize, if I don’t care what other people do with it, if I don’t want to ‘save the world’, if I am completely satisfied with my own company and do not really need friends, let alone being interested in them and their opinions ... unless they are ‘with me’, i.e. agree with my opinions, like Alan for instance. Do I actually enjoy another person’s company as I had believed? Do I actually live peace if I find myself getting a kick out of the one-up-man ship I find myself engaged in since stepping on to this ‘wide and wondrous path of peace and harmony’ ... To use your words: ‘Can I walk the talk?’
This was exactly the reason why I saw through Richard’s ‘peaceful’ living; it was (and is) expressed in glee for winning yet another argument, especially the one-up-man-ship he is so proud of having eliminated ...
It would be so helpful for both of you to listen to your own advice that you give to others, that is being honest with yourself. To notice and attack in others what you are too proud, unaware or dishonest of acknowledging in yourself is called projection ... a common feat of the human conditioning! <snip>
It does not mean though, that I could ever go back to seeing all people who are not following Richard’s way as basically malicious and sorrowful. They are not, at least not all the people I have contact with, on the contrary! A basically malicious person is intensely interested in self-gain, appearance and power, usually at any cost to save his/her own skin and only appreciating of another person if it results in strengthening his/her personal image of being the very best, since sliced bread.
A person who despises love has a reason to repress love, either because of the absence of love in his/her life or because of deep disappointment in love-affairs, which says nothing about love itself but everything about the experiencer, who could be just incapable of loving or is angry with it as it proved to be different from lust, owning, possessing, using the other and expecting the other to be available.
Anyway I am going to give you my opinions whether you like them or not, most likely not but we never know what it can open and sparkle up, don’t we?<snip>
VINEETO: You seem to have an axe to grind, the gloves are obviously off. I do wonder, what the name of this axe is, why you seem to want to attack me and prove me wrong so passionately. Is it because I said I have left the women’s camp and dare not to be a woman, but a human being? You have expressed your interest in my conversation with Konrad, that’s why I have sent you the full mail. The interest was obviously to collect ammunition and make it a point how much you feel attacked by me?
But, apart from me being stunned by such a passionate attack – as I perceive it – you are doing me a great favour. Coming to the next stage in my journey to freedom, I did want to muster all my remaining doubts and ‘ghosts’ in the cupboard. You saved me the work to list them. I will answer you accusations one by one:
IRENE: You are not yet aware of it, you are displaying the classical symptoms of disciplehood – although I must commend you on your sincere devotion to Richard’s method! – like your zeal in defending Richard (as the originator of your newly adopted practical life philosophy) and yourself plus attacking anybody who still questions it or has pointed out the flaws in it. The typical ‘us and them’ scenario that you would remember from following your other masters.
VINEETO: Richard has, like Pythagoras for geometry and Galileo for astronomy and physics, found out the facts about the Human Condition, which nobody has ever discovered before. Applying those facts is a scientific process. Does it work or not? I found that Richard’s method works. I found that it makes me incrementally free from the Human Condition. So I use it. By telling other people about it I refer to Richard as the discoverer.
Moments and hours of pure consciousness experiences give me enough proof of the efficiency of Richard’s method that I am confident to use it and to talk about it. I am experimenting with Richard’s findings and find that they work.
Nevertheless, I know very well that Richard is completely free of the Human Condition, while I am still in the process, living in Virtual Freedom, a state which, as you know well from your own experience, is not irreversible. This discovery about the Human Condition is neither male nor female, it is not another belief, but a way of looking at my life. When I examine my failures of being happy and harmless up to now and the failures of Humanity and its Ancient Wisdom to live in peace and harmony, everything makes sense, ‘falls into place’.
In times long past the observations of Galileo resulted in that all astronomical data could fall into place and in that a new science was born and, despite much objection, his discoveries eventually replaced the previous Aristotelian Wisdom of the false geo-centric system. Newton stood on Galileo’s shoulder and so does the whole of modern practical physics. Notwithstanding the facticity of his discoveries did the church prosecute him and tried to suppress his findings because it was so radically different to what everybody believed up till then and it was flying in the face of the current religious beliefs.
So the difference between believing in a Guru or an authority and applying an experimental method is the same as the difference between believing someone and finding out facts for oneself. I don’t need to believe a fact, it is obvious. If you don’t find it obvious in your experience, then you may have your reasons. But why is it so important to prove me wrong? Why not just get on with what works for you in your life?
IRENE: And then of course the inevitable proselytizing that goes hand in hand with being a ‘born again’ human being;...
VINEETO: When I tell my story and state that the discovery of freedom works for me, it may look to you as merely proselytizing another belief, because today you deny the possibility of it being a fact. Fair enough, that’s what I initially did. I had been very suspicious of taking on another belief. Calling me a missionary you are actually proposing I should tell no-one about this new discovery. Would that not be very mean and miserly to the possible courageous pioneers, who might be fed up with the conventional tried and failed solutions, ready to try out something new and radical? To say that it is possible to eliminate instincts is not a belief to me, it is my very experience. I am in the process of eliminating them all. If you think just because I am happy and tell my story that I am insisting you should do as I did, then you’re mistaken. You are free to do what you want to – if you don’t like my story then don’t invite me for coffee. Being a missionary would mean that my happiness depends on how many people conform with me, that my happiness is dependant on others believing the same thing. That would make a very poor happiness and definitely not freedom!
But that is the difference for me between belief and fact: A fact only has to be acknowledged once, not confirmed by a crowd. That everybody believes something doesn’t make it a fact, and a fact is a fact even if no one believes it. And to accept as fact that you can become free of the Human Condition goes against all common conviction.
IRENE: Perhaps you could ask yourselves: <snip> Do I actually enjoy another person’s company as I had believed? Do I actually live peace if I find myself getting a kick out of the one-up-man-ship I find myself engaged in since stepping on to this ‘wide and wondrous path of peace and harmony’ ... To use your words: ‘Can I walk the talk?’
VINEETO: I don’t really know what you mean by this expression one-up-man-ship. I have enjoyed the conversation with Konrad (here) immensely and I have learnt a few things, for instance, when he managed to trigger an emotional reaction in me. So it was helpful for me to test my reactions, in discussion with someone so firmly rooted in the ‘male’ camp, in cerebral logic and theoretical mathematics, in feeling superior and deep rooted in spirituality. I used the conversation with Konrad to sharpen my intellect, to check my own conviction for flaws. I don’t know why he continued the conversation, he must have had some fun and satisfaction as well. As far as you are concerned, it is you who started this argumentation, trying to poke holes into what I was saying to Konrad. I don’t know about your motivation but I cannot see any one-up-man-ship in my writing.
IRENE: I have also wondered honestly why I am doing this, apart from politely responding to the mail you’ve sent me. I have come to see that it is more difficult for me than I thought to lose interest in people whom I not only inspired in trying Richards method, but whom I have fond memories of as well. This also pertains to Richard.
VINEETO: I am sorry, but I don’t believe your fond memories being the reason for such a belligerent letter to me. It does not make sense. Also, I cannot say that you inspired me much in trying out Richard’s method, so there is no need to create a balance by questioning it now. I am simply answering your questions, your doubts as to whether Richard’s discovery works for me. If you call that one-up-man-ship, then I don’t know what you mean by it.
IRENE: It would be so helpful for both of you to listen to your own advice that you give to others, that is being honest with yourself. To notice and attack in others what you are too proud, unaware or dishonest of acknowledging in yourself is called projection ... a common feat of the human conditioning!
VINEETO: Again, I don’t know what you are referring to. I have never claimed, neither to Konrad nor to you, that I am completely free of the Human Condition, that I am completely free of emotion. I remember telling you that there are a few fear-attacks and I told Konrad, where he had triggered annoyance in me. Where do you see me being dishonest in acknowledging something in myself? I am acknowledging that the Human Condition exists within me and because of that I notice it in every human being. That’s why it is called the Human Condition – it applies to everybody. I, for my part, have chosen to do something about it, to eliminate it. Is there any other honesty? But, of course, it is completely up to you as how you choose to see me.
IRENE: It does not mean though, that I could ever go back to seeing all people who are not following Richard’s way as basically malicious and sorrowful. They are not, at least not all the people I have contact with, on the contrary!
VINEETO: As I said above, looking within myself I found the Human Condition applies to everyone, it being the disease we come into the world with. I don’t see it as the personal ‘fault’ of anybody in particular and therefore don’t make the mistake of blaming others for my misery and anger. But as I have found that it is possible to eliminate the Human Condition within myself, to become happy and harmless, I consider everybody capable of doing something about their malice and sorrow, if they so desire. And to state that most people are happy and benign is plainly denying facts and not looking below the surface. To get rid of a disease firstly one has to acknowledge that one is sick. Most people don’t want to do this. Fair enough. But that does not stop me from expecting a possible outbreak of malice or fear or sorrow from anybody, having seen how ingrained it has been within me. You yourself said that in order to keep love in your life you would welcome the sorrow that comes in its wake.
Without aggression and malice operating there is no necessity to keep anything under control as there is neither aggression nor need for defence.
IRENE: Sorry to disappoint you but in my own experience with you there is plenty of both, your imagined images are not very objective obviously (and I am not the only one apparently who thinks so).
VINEETO: Now, you need to specify this. Where did I actually attack you. My not agreeing with your opinion does not mean I am attacking you. And telling you that my experience is different to what you say is not being defensive. I have never done anything other than talking to you about my experience. If you feel attacked because I don’t agree with you, that is another matter. I, for my case, enjoy a lively discussion about life.
IRENE: A basically malicious person is intensely interested in self-gain, appearance and power, usually at any cost to save his/her own skin and only appreciating of another person if it results in strengthening his/her personal image of being the very best, since sliced bread.
VINEETO: I take it that you mean me. Otherwise why would you write it to me? Self-gain: my very aim is to totally demolish the ‘self’ in me as in ‘self’-ish or ‘self’-centred. So the ‘self’ can only lose in that situation, not gain. Only the ‘self’ is interested in appearance and image, and that is the very thing that I am in the process of eliminating. As for power, I don’t have any power at all, no position, nothing anybody would want, nothing to manipulate somebody with. So if I did seek power I have utterly failed. ‘The very best since sliced bread’ – yes, absolutely, that’s my conviction. For me, getting rid of my ‘self’ without becoming enlightened is the very best discovery since sliced bread!
IRENE: A person who despises love has a reason to repress love, either because of the absence of love in his/her life or because of deep disappointment in love-affairs, which says nothing about love itself but everything about the experiencer, who could be just incapable of loving or is angry with it as it proved to be different from lust, owning, possessing, using the other and expecting the other to be available.
VINEETO: First of all, what you are saying is illogical. A person in whom love is absent does not have to repress it. Second, the continuing disappointments in love-affairs have triggered doubts about the validity of love as the highest considered value of humankind. Only because of my disappointments and the failure in both my love affairs and in those of other people who I have closely observed, was I open to Peter’s proposing an alternative for our relationship – no love but intimacy, examining and eliminating everything that would be in the road between us. And it is for the first time that living with a man is not a disappointment but an immense joy. I am very glad that I am not capable of dreaming the ideal love-dream anymore. Experiencing actual intimacy day after day is far, far superior to love.
IRENE: ... feelings of affection, warmth, so essential for humour, playing music with pleasure and delightful human interactions is to me as valuable as sexual pleasure and orgasms, why do you see feelings in such a negative way only? To me it sounds like nothing more than another ‘religiously’ followed tenet, like all other masters see sex as something to transcend or get rid of ...
VINEETO: I understood from the conversations with you that you consider emotions including love and sorrow necessary and valuable, and that you want to give women more power because they have the better solution for the world’s problems. How can one gender be right and the other be wrong? How illogical! To me it looks just the reverse of what the Christians and other male oriented religions have been preaching. The problem remains: dominance and slavery of one gender over the other! If men are wrong, so are women. Men have to rid themselves of their male conditioning and women have to rid themselves of their female conditioning. I can only repeat what I already wrote to Konrad:
It is a daring and it requires courage to step out of the identity that I have been born with and to leave the safe place of the ‘women’s camp’. But I have found it the only way to live in peace and harmony with a man and to be free of the petty fights between the two genders. And out of that understanding I am ready to go all the way, taking occasional fear-attacks as par for the course. Women’s liberation – yes, liberation from being woman. Liberation from woman’s conditioning, from woman’s beliefs in authority, woman’s ideas of being a victim and therefore fighting for dominance, from the notion of being a second class citizen, from the need to compare, from the nurturing instinct and subsequent bondage, suffering and self-sacrifice, from the drive to have babies as the meaning of life...
IRENE: ...like all other masters see sex as something to transcend or get rid of ...
VINEETO: That shot missed the target by 180 degrees. If anyone is all for sex then it is me. Where did I ever say I see sex as something to transcend or to get rid of? It is the finest and most delicious pleasure man and woman can have, once all beliefs, instincts and emotions are eliminated. Sex is definitely not the place for fear, aggression, shame and guilt nor is it the place for love, bondage, emotional bank-balance or pleasing. The delight resulting in having eliminated the hindering emotions around sex is my every day experience, and it is beyond my wildest dreams.
IRENE: I’d like to ask you if you could be scientific as well and at least give me the benefit of the doubt and wonder if I could be right?
VINEETO: I checked out the benefit of a doubt and it does not apply. I enjoy my life right now and I don’t want to swap it for what I have left behind – love and sorrow, compassion and feeling helpless in the face of human suffering. I decided to do something about the suffering and aggression in me, that’s the only person I can change. If you see it different, then you see it different. Why do you need me to agree with you?
IRENE: If you want to send this e-mail to Richard as well or even to Konrad or the mailing list, I don’t mind.
VINEETO: I have sent the e-mail to Richard. Since Richard put his response to you on the mailing list, I will put our conversation (your letters and my responses) on the mailing list as well as on our web-site. I will leave it to you to send it to Konrad, he may welcome your comments.
VINEETO: As you can read in my letter to Alan on the mailing list, I do appreciate and made good use of your scrutiny. In my answer to you I have not yet expressed that. Because if you are out to demolish Vineeto, so am I and we are on the same ball-game.
But when I contemplated longer about it I realised that this was exactly the job you did with Richard, ‘scrutinizing’ him out of his enlightenment into actual freedom. When are you going to be generous to yourself and use this wonderful and sharp talent on yourself, the only person who really matters for you? Otherwise you will continue in the hopeless game of compassion and end up empty-handed yourself! Because who would believe in a reward in heaven after death, when you can have paradise here and now on earth?
So I invite you to another kind of game – let’s finish the mud-throwing and start telling each other our honest stories about the discoveries we are making in life, the way a certain method works or not, finding out what is belief and what is fact and actuality. I know I will be honest, if only for my sake. Care to join? Once right and wrong are of no concern and competition and power are considered silly then this game is thrilling fun. I had 18 wonderful months of it with Peter, who is now on his way out.
Then I can tell you the story of today, when I suddenly realised that when Peter will be free I am going to be left behind, on my own, abandoned, without protection. Although the fear itself wasn’t overwhelming I was still quite upset and for that very reason had access to the whole ‘library’ of emotional memories of similar situations in my life. The last ones I remember were when Rajneesh died and I was left without the physical guidance of the master. There were other occasions several times throughout my relationship with my ex-boyfriend whenever he went off with another woman or once when he fell seriously in love with a friend of mine. At that time I had tried to set anything and everything in motion to get him back so as not to have to experience the grief and the dread of being on my own.
The memory of those events added to the upset about my fear of a possible ‘abandonment’ and hit with quite a strength. I sat there during our lunch, while Peter peacefully read his newspaper, and contemplated on the impact of a woman’s instinct, on female conditioning and the dreams that were going out the door. I felt the passion of the belief of each woman that she needs to have someone to hold on to. And I could recognise it as the core of my female ‘self’ and appreciated that it was being challenged, examined and then withered away. What a freedom to have no relationship whatsoever to Peter because the Peter I fell in love with and who I used to relate to does not exist anymore. The realisation was stark at first and made me wobbly – I was uneasy towards him for a while because the way of relating was now new and unexperienced.
And now I am ready to disappear. What is the point in hanging on to a rotten identity. The whole process has been great fun and now it is time to go all the way. And what a thrill it is to go where no woman has gone before!
Cheers, Irene, I hope you feel tickled to join the game.
IRENE: You wrote [Vineeto]: I do appreciate and made good use of your scrutiny. In my answer to you I have not yet expressed that. Because if you are out to demolish Vineeto, so am I and we are on the same ball-game. [endquote].
First of all, in order to understand one another I see that I have not made it clear to you yet that I don’t subscribe any more to Richard’s goal of getting rid of ‘me’, my identity, my emotions. This is what I meant when I said that I had seen through Richard’s method and his view that this is what freedom means.
To me freedom means: to be free from the human conditioning (i.e. the belief in the man-made mistakes in their interpretations of being human and of nature in general). That what I had called ‘virtual freedom’.
The human condition is best described as the basic givens that accompany being human. That what we consist of, all the aspects that make up being human, all the magical characteristics like legs to walk, hands to manipulate, heart to keep the blood flowing through each and every atom of our body, eyes that are not only for seeing, but also to express ourselves to others by baring the state of our innermost being, be that in a state of joy, love or anger. Other aspects are our brains, that are not only the seat of thoughts, but also feelings, memory, emotions and our reactions to our interpretations – our opinions – of all our experiences in being human. Yet another aspect belonging to this organism is the sexual experience and the sensual capacity we have.
This is why Richard and I have called them by different names; the human condition is the basic capacity for being human and although parts can be deficient in some people (blind people) this is what we all share in common and what we make use of during our whole life. The human conditioning is the curbing and controlling of this natural given. I can depict it as the social cloak that is grown around the human condition and that can become so constricting to the natural human potential that it can even kill or maim a person. As example look at the many Muslim women who are maimed and/or killed by the unnatural belief that woman is not only not to enjoy her sexual feelings but she should be cut open and sewn up in order to provide more pleasure for man ...
The human conditioning can be studied and understood, so that it does not affect us any more in living our natural potential. It is not something we can deny away or just hate and throw out. Once we have understood it empirically then we loose our emotional reaction to it and although the conditioning is still active in the world, it doesn’t disturb us any more in a personal way. Then we are free from the conditioning.
To give you an example that you now truly can relate to: The mistaken interpretation of what male and female sexuality are supposed to be felt and expressed like, that has caused us all to experience so many many needless disappointments and heartaches and that has perverted so grossly the precious feeling that it is.
How delicious isn’t it to be free of guilt, shame, embarrassment, to be free to enjoy all the different delights that make up all sexuality without the crushing and degrading opinions of conditioned men and women, who still believe in the righteous anger and stinginess that a creator-god has with women who dare to enjoy their natural sexuality and whom ‘he’ supposedly created so ‘himself’.
This belief goes much much deeper than just the religious people; it is ingrained in each and every woman, no matter which one of the existing cultures. Look at yourself, you were not particularly believing in god and still you had to empirically understand and free yourself from all the voices that you heard, warning you for ending up like a slut for instance ... That’s why I do no longer see it as a religious question but fundamentally caused by the mistakenly assumed identities of man and woman.
You asked me to tell you my honest story about the discoveries I am making, so this is what I am doing, Vineeto. I hope that you now understand me better and that you can see that I am not at all out to demolish you, Vineeto, but your belief in the old spiritual man-made ‘ideal’ of getting rid of your self and that Richard has augmented with getting rid of literally everything that you can possibly call human: the feelings, emotions, instincts, sense of humaneness towards other people around you, in short all that was a natural given to start of with. To be so anti-nature is called preposterous.
Only a person who is deeply troubled by emotions will turn against them in anger and try to rid themselves of the whole plethora of emotional experiences. To me they are the palette that I use to paint my every moment onto the canvas of my immediate environment, except that this is 3-dimensional and it depicts more my atmosphere than colours or figures. Another thing you need to know about me is that I don’t see Richard as free, but rather removed from being human.
VINEETO: I have come out of a maze of strange days, full of both bouts of fear, doubt and desperation interspersed with long stretches of a wondrous soft and sensuous peace and contentment. The journey towards no-control has been a rocky one, thrilling indeed because it is so untrodden. Having experience the contents of various emotional attacks I have decided, for a change, to look at them from another angle – trying to understand what is happening. What we found was a repetitive circle of fear – frustration – doubt – and again fear, and the only way out of this circle is the intent to have the already always existing peace-on-earth become apparent.
For some reason the wide and wondrous path to freedom seemed to have turned into a thorny thicket, in itself a clear indication that I got off the road. As I have written to you earlier I had decided to leave Virtual Freedom behind and go for the genuine article – extinction. Since no one has completed the direct route to Actual Freedom before, this is now truly unchartered sea. Understanding the need to give up the way I had controlled my life I am now like a ship without tiller, seemingly tossed by the moods of the ocean. It appears that fear is the last one of those insidious instincts, the root core of each being human, the instinctual fear of survival. But in its nature it is only real, not actual. This core fear is standing in the way of me experiencing the actual world, it is standing in the road to freedom. A yet un-met challenge!
Having come that far in my contemplations I likened the whole path to freedom as a big balloon-popping party. Imagine a room full of balloons floating near the ceiling, in different colours, with different names of instincts, emotions, beliefs and conditioning written on them. The aim of the game is to pop every single balloon one by one by questioning, investigating and identifying the nature of the various beliefs, emotions and instincts. Once the last balloon is popped I am free. I imagine it to be light green, big, evasive, with fear written all over it. I need to keep it firmly in place, not getting distracted by doubt or other flight manoeuvres, and then – pop! That imagination changes the whole adventure from its heroic and dramatic frame into the thrilling and delightful journey it actually is. It also pulls the plug of making a big fuss about it. Mind you, I still consider it the best game to play, despite the other options you talked about in your letter.
I have been contemplating why there is this ‘strange’ wanting to report to you various – what I consider – interesting steps on the journey. The explanation I came up with is that I consider you as my forerunner in a baton relay race, where I took over what you had started years ago. After all, you have lived with Richard in peace and harmony for eleven years and dug deep into the male-female conditioning. If it had not been for you and Richard I would not be where I am today, and I admire your courage and efforts. Now Peter and I are mapping out the direct path to actual freedom as we stumble along, for whoever wants to take it up. Besides all the fear and thrill it is still a delight, after all, this is a perfect and sparkling physical universe and all the drama is only in one’s head and one’s heart.
I hope you can appreciate or at least understand why I seem to butt in on what you now consider more appropriate. I simply can’t overlook the job you have done for all of us.
IRENE: Or to be invited by someone who wants to share their most precious feelings with you.
VINEETO: I am not sharing my most precious feelings but my latest effort in grasping the tricks of the Human Condition in me to survive.
IRENE: In any case I hope that I have explained myself a lot better to you this time, because these misunderstandings that lead to throwing mud to each other are not something I enjoy either!
VINEETO: I appreciate we stopped throwing mud, but could please you clarify what you mean by ‘misunderstandings’? I took your comments on my letter to Konrad as plain objections, not misunderstandings.
VINEETO: I wrote in my letter to you: Peter ... ‘who is now on his way out’.
This fatal half sentence has obviously created misunderstanding. What I meant is that I experienced Peter leaving the realm of our relationship or – the other way round – I experienced the end and death of the personal relationship. I admit it is a very confused way to express it, I was clouded by the emotion around this happening. I apologize.
IRENE: To me compassion is the full understanding through experiencing all the accompanying emotions of a particularly testing aspect of life, that this is what it is to be grieving, or to be angry or to intensely hate or to be desolate, lonely, utterly discouraged in all of life etc. and to accept it as belonging to the all-round human experience in order to become wise.
VINEETO: I have experienced others being compassionate towards me and me feeling compassionate towards others, and I see that it insidiously perpetuates the pattern we humans live in. Trying to fix the problem in somebody else instead of getting rid of ‘me’ only continues sorrow, superiority, fear, feeling the victim and helplessness in the face of human suffering. Whenever I have dared to watch the atrocious happenings in the world without the soothing cover of compassion and pity, those murderous and vicious actions of us humans always strike like a SledgeHammer – and force me to do something about it. As I am the only person who can make myself free from malice and sorrow, this is what I have to do. I cannot free anybody else from their intrinsic malice or sorrow. But I can dare the journey and thus prove that it is possible. It might encourage others to apply the method that works.
Wishing you well, too.
VINEETO: Thank you for your friendly letter. Being immersed in this strange, thrilling, wonderful and most fascinating exploration to the very core of what the self consists of I will answer only shortly today. The full description of what is happening once one starts approaching and heading for death is in progress. Once the remainder of the identity is completely eliminated I will let you all know what an adventure it has been!
IRENE: When I read your letter tonight for a second time, elements of honesty, perseverance and courage came through in your letter and inspired me to write back to you now.
I like it that you are honest enough to admit your mistakes freely and frank and your appreciation of me for my empirical ‘dug deep into the male-female conditioning’. I also like your perseverance in reporting to me your interesting steps on the journey, despite my objections to that very journey (without the need to throw mud to each other) because that shows to me that you consider my opinions valid enough to at least check yourself against. And therefore that you keep your mind open to a certain extent. Your courage shows itself in the preparedness to go all the way to reach your potential, even though I dispute the picture you have formed of your ultimate freedom according to what you believe and perceive Richard to be.
After following and believing several authorities in your life, you owe it to yourself to be a lot more scrupulous this time (careful down to the last detail) in checking out the person who – you believe – lives in the state of actual freedom that you aspire to. You told me that you already had, but I find that hard to believe as you only meet him about once a week over lunch and have only partly read his book, which to me is even less than your involvement with your former master.
Every person can be affable and welcoming for a few hours a day or a week, that in itself is no prove of his state. Moreover is his state indeed what you aspire to? and why?
VINEETO: You see, it is not Richard’s state I am aspiring but Actual Freedom. Richard is living it and has discovered it. But I have tasted it many times and have had lots of chances to acknowledge that the taste is not some personal Richard-freedom belief-system. Actual freedom is what is left when I dismantle ALL the beliefs, emotions, instincts. It is the naked facts of life on this planet, in this universe. So to me it does not matter in the least if he spills his coffee on the carpet or has any other kind of flaws that you would have in mind. He has pointed out what is possible for every human being. I am out to prove that what Richard did is possible for me to do and therefore for everyone.
IRENE: Do you indeed consider it fulfilling to live a hedonistic life only – I have nothing against enjoying all delicious aspects of life to the full – but if the emphasis is on sensual and sexual delights alone,
VINEETO: No, it is not fulfilling enough to live a hedonistic life without the intent to become completely free. At some point of the perfect life of virtual freedom it becomes unfulfilling because one knows it is only half way. That was when I turned my back on Virtual Freedom and decided it was time to go all the way. With having experienced what was possible it was simply inconceivable not to want it all, 24 hours a day, every day.
IRENE: ...there is a huge part of human enjoyment that is deemed invaluable and therefore to be rid of, exterminated, extirpated etc. In other words these aspects of human life, decreed by Richard as worthless (have nothing to do with it), perverse (malicious) and needlessly painful (sorrow) are all wrong. He blames the actual human organism, that what is naturally manifested by the universe (and specifically by the earth), an absolutely magical phenomenon that can not only have sensual and sexual experiences (like all animals and even plants to a certain degree of intensity) but comes also with an exquisite capacity for thinking, feeling, sensing, and communicating all these capacities. To Richard this natural humanness is the cause of all problems in the world, and especially the feelings and instincts, as you well know. He is therefore anti-nature: preposterous.
VINEETO: Richard does not blame the human organism, but the Human Condition. The human organism is the body complete with senses and brain and the innate intelligence to be ‘sensible’. The Human Condition, the collection of beliefs and underlaying instincts of fear, aggression, nurture and desire, is exactly what spoils the unimpeded use of our innate intelligence. I admit, nobody before Richard has ever considered the possibility to separate the two, but they are definitely two different things. I can vouch for that with my own ongoing experience.
IRENE: Living with Richard. made it eventually clear to me that it is not nature that is to blame but the overlaid male interpretation of human life; how it should be instead! In other words knowing better than nature, the universe itself. I don’t have to explain to you how every culture and religion (all invented by male minds, based on their interpretation of how life should be organised and regulated for women as well) denigrates particular aspects of our natural faculties and have tried to suppress them, repress them, to forbid them and demand that they must be changed into unnatural behaviour and beliefs, in order to keep the male supremacy intact.
In most cultures and religions we can observe, for instance, that sex was the culprit – it had to be either repressed completely (like the catholic priests) or limited to the wishes of the man only. In both scenarios a shocking amount of victims were created: repressed sexuality reveals itself in perversity, as is more and more exposed in the use of young children by grown men for their own benefit only and to the detriment of many, many children, as they were made helpless and guilty by intimidation and threats. The other alternative was the licence granted to men over women and girls by cultural and religious authorities, whereby women and girls are seen as just cattle, for the men to use as they please.
VINEETO: I find it curious that by living with Richard you have observed all those described atrocities about male repressive interpretation of life, because I have come to know him as the most peaceful and benign man ever. Nevertheless, what you say is partly true. Men have caused a lot of suffering for everybody, including women – but so have women. Both genders are victim of those insidious instincts that you seem to defend as natural. Every sensible and honest woman knows she has caused as much suffering to boys and men and her own ‘sisters’ as she claims to have received. Out of this stock-take and understanding I decided to stop malice and sorrow completely at least from my side. Waiting for a paradise when everyone will be de-conditioned from the ‘male minds’ conditioning’ equates to me waiting for Santa Claus.
IRENE: It lies all in the mistake of man believing himself to be the authority over woman, as was decreed by their ancestors who were to be believed to be in direct contact with a creator-god.
VINEETO: According to my own experience, once I freed myself from the belief in an authority – which you say rules my life and which you suggest that I fight against in any man or woman I meet – I was then able to use my intelligence cleared from resentment and doubt, revenge and righteousness. It was the emotional belief in the reality of this authority that held me in the bondage of having to either follow or fight. Now authority is of no concern. This in turn freed me to find out for myself what life is all about. I am autonomous to weigh the facts and decide accordingly.
IRENE: If men and women will ever want to live in peace and harmony, the very root-cause must be addressed: a law can only be fair if both genders define that law, not only men. But men would not voluntarily choose to share all responsibilities and rights with women, because they are too proud of and too used to their supremacy, plus they would – quite understandably! – feel afraid that they might become redundant altogether, once women were given the chance to have equal say in the decision-making processes that are necessary for the organization of all men, women and children into a peaceful and fair living together.
VINEETO: If I had waited until that law you talk about was produced before I could live in peace and harmony I would still be living in conflict and despair. With our living together Peter and I have proven that every single person can decide for themselves if they want to live in peace and harmony or not. Any pre-condition before oneself is willing to change is just another excuse not to roll up one’s sleeves and start to clean up the Human Condition from within one’s own self.
IRENE: What I am actually most interested in you is what you described in your very first paragraph:
I know doubt, fear and frustration in myself, but could you describe to me, Vineeto, what your doubt is precisely to do with? What are the 2 alternatives that make up the dilemma and cause the doubt? What exactly has happened to make you doubt? And the same with fear?
Because I have always found it imperative – to use your words – to investigate and identify the nature of each emotion (doubt and fear and frustration etc.) and describe precisely what it is made up of. Because doubt is a very important feeling to find out, after all it is – like pain – an indication that there is something not clear. No use to steamroll over it by telling yourself off for not doing it right, because it will creep up as long as it is not addressed deeply and you have finally made up your mind about who or what is correct (your adopted way or your innermost sense of correct or incorrect).
Otherwise you are just a follower of someone else, no matter how convincing he/she is.
VINEETO: Doubt as opposed to scrutiny is a very destructive emotion. This is what I have come to in my latest investigation. Understanding that to reach my potential, I as an identity have to die, I have faced immense fear, naturally. After all, dying is truly an unnatural process, going against every single one of our animal instincts. I checked out every surfacing doubt for its content and finally came to understand that the act of doubting itself was a psychological trick to avoid the imminent fear of death – the very, very cunning bit of ‘me’. Doubt simply turned out to be the coating around fear, to protect me from its impact. This faculty of doubt has disappeared simply by my understanding its very function. Now there is no personal doubt left, only the instinctual fear of the impending discovery that the whole powerful experience of enlightenment is but a delusion, ie that there is no life after death.
Fear in the face of impending death is what potatoes are for a potato-soup, its very ingredients. There is no potato soup without potatoes, there is no death without fear. The only way to deal with that fear which I found after many days of going around in circle like a headless hamster is a suggestion from Richard:
Accepting the fact of death made me stop and welcome it. I see this as the only way to proceed. Only psychological death can free me from the psychological fear of a personal death (ego), and psychic death can free me from the instinctual fear of an absolute death (obliteration). The Enlightened Ones clearly avoid the second death. Having come that far in my understanding I just have to act accordingly...
IRENE: I hope dearly that we can continue with an interesting and pleasant conversation on e-mail, because it is good for both of us to define clearly how we tick!
To me this is the charm of living to the full as the gregarious beings that we are, don’t you agree?!
VINEETO: My pleasure! I am glad you are interested and pleased with our conversation. After all, we are human beings, playing games with different names, mine is called ‘actual freedom’, yours seems to be called ‘matrilineal paradise’. You seem very fascinated and thrilled by our game. After all, it is a scientific investigation into the nature of the human psyche and condition. At least, that is how I play it.
IRENE: What I would like to suggest is that we both write down what the nature of our relationship is with each other and give a name to our own game and the other’s, plus what we see as the common purpose, if there is one. I’ll be the first!
The game I am playing is living an authentic life, i.e. making use of all my faculties which I have learnt to understand over the years and which I enjoy calling my own, like thinking, feeling, sensing, harmonizing all of them in a well-developed understanding and expressing this in the most authentic way to others. You see that I certainly include feelings and intuition (sensing) in the whole package, as I do not see them as perverse or contrary at all, unlike Richard, as you well know. < ... >
Now, although you may be convinced that Richard is not an authority for you (‘because he says so himself’) why don’t your words and attitude bear that out? Why do you put into practice his methods, aim for the state he is in, defend him and criticize others using his words and phraseology and prove him to be right by your own experiences?
Is it possible that you may not be aware that this is actually the classic indication of following an authority? The ‘born-again’ Christians show the same behaviour, so did most of the German subjects of Hitler, or Sannyasins or ‘students’ of Barry Long, A.Cohen, Adida (or whatever his name is this week!) etc. < ... >
So, to come back to my proposal in the beginning of this email, I would like to call my game ‘being natural and authentic’ (with the understanding and wise use of feelings, intuition and instincts). I suggest that we call your game ‘extirpate the natural and the authentic’ (with the emphasis on feelings, intuition and instincts).
As I said before this is something that I suggest in order to come to an agreement between you and me, so your agreement or disagreement or your choice of names to our games is equally valid as mine, as long as we can agree both!
What we have in common in this is not yet clear to me, but I hope that you can detect something in this email to which you can say: ‘Yes, I do see that myself too’ or ‘Yes, in this respect Irene and I see eye to eye’. I sincerely hope that we find something more in common than living in the same town and the few people we both know, but if that proves not to be the case then that is how it is, isn’t it?
VINEETO: The reason I write is to ultimately to find out about myself. If I get upset about something, annoyed, repulsed or angry, it means there is something in me that is not squeaky clean. And my game is called ‘actual freedom’ and that means being free of anything that prevents me from experiencing the actual world as-it-is. And as long as there is any feeling or emotion triggered in me, I will never experience how this actual world really is! Therapists have found a part of this understanding – they call it ‘projection’. Projection means, I see something in someone else that I have in myself. The say, ‘forget about the other.’ Why does it annoy me? Oh, because I reject it in me. Aha, I am dishonest, that’s why I am annoyed that the other is maybe dishonest (or a Hitler, or authority-fixed, or proselytizing, etc.)? So then, what I do is search in me for the reason for feeling dishonest. In what terms am I dishonest with myself? Am I believing something that I have already experienced to be otherwise? So then, why do I want to hold on to this belief, which I have already experienced as false? Fear? Yes, of course, fear! All my fear is fear of death. Fear that denies the fact of death. One day ‘I’ will have to die. Full stop.
See, Irene, this is how I deal with what you call might ‘intuition’. I turn it on myself. ‘I’ am the only person I am interested in because it is this ‘I’ that stands in the way of my happiness. It is ‘I’ who has to be eliminated. Full stop.
And that fear of death creates all the tricks, throwing up issues, ‘truths’ and beliefs, emotions and disharmony. It can be traced down to that basic fear. Always!
So I have decided to be free of that fear. I have decided for the unnatural solution, 180 degrees away from the instincts of fear, aggression, nurture and desire. All of them are based on the fear of death. And those instincts are the fundamental corner stone, the very reason for all of humanity’s values, be they ethical, moralistic, religious or spiritual values. In their very nature those instincts are destructive. The instincts only ‘care’ for the survival of the species, the strongest, the most aggressive, the crudest.
I have experienced a lot of time without this destructive ‘I’, the self. I know that there is something vastly better than this petty life of fears and deceit that I have lived during most of my life. There is no destiny in this picture of petty morals. There is no freedom.
The only freedom there is lies outside of instincts. And for that freedom ‘I’ have to die. Full stop!
Then I can taste the sweet as-is-ness of the actual world, the as-is-ness of people, events and things. That ambrosial, magical, magnificent sweetness pulls me further and further into what looks like death on the side of ‘self’. But in the face of that delicious sweetness all objections slowly, slowly melt into insignificance...
Irene, if you don’t see it this way, then you will do something else with your life. If you don’t remember and rely upon your own peak-experiences because of what they implicate, then this is what you choose to do. Most other people I know would agree with you. But the actuality of my own sensuous experience is too obvious, too tempting, too delicious.
If you say you do not want to acknowledge or follow that taste of your peak experiences because Richard has experienced actual freedom first – a man in general and Richard in particular – then that is your personal objection. I have smelled, tasted, seen, heard, touched it so often myself, and so closely, that I am now obsessed with it ... the delicious is-ness of it all, because there is nobody inside is separate, who objects...
It sure beats Love, Divine Love or Compassion, which are all no strangers to me, so I can say that with full authority. Why should I settle for second best?
Peter just played John Lennon’s dream. It is mine too. And I have tasted it!
VINEETO: Your delightful visit this afternoon inspired me to write back to you straight away. It was such good fun to have you around, talking about the daily things in life. No philosophy, but small talk – I like that we keep the ‘business’ to e-mail.
IRENE: Subject: The fearful, aggressive ‘me’ versus the freely authentic me
Your sending me the correspondence between you and No. 2 did it!!
VINEETO: It took me a long time wondering what you meant by this subject-title. I interpret it that you consider yourself being ‘freely authentic’, while you consider me ‘fearful’ and ‘aggressive’ because I acknowledge that I have, like everyone else the Human Condition still operating in me... Well, I would say it is better to know what is inside of me than to be surprised when it suddenly comes over me – like it used to a few years ago. By the way, I did not send you the correspondence with No. 2, it came via the mailing list.
IRENE: I mean my ‘way in’ to a possible agreement between us... But before you start reading it, I would like to ask you to do something first. I would like you to do an experiment – yes a scientific one! – namely the daring to take a truly unbiased approach, a place, a standpoint, a point of view in yourself that you have never taken yet, that you so far have not considered possible outside your peak experiences. This is really good, Vineeto, because in reading your email – actually especially this following bit in the first paragraph – you showed me crystal clear what your difficulty is, and Peter’s, and Richard’s and Grace’s and everybody’s who has ever had a peak-experience!
And what therefore my difficulty was with all of you!
VINEETO to No 2: Once I stop doing, feeling, proposing, interpreting, in short, messing around, with the world as-it-is, then everything is simply perfect. It is ‘I’ who is at the core of all the trouble. And this ‘I’ consists of ‘ego’ and ‘soul’, concepts and emotions, everything that is not touchable, visible, audible, tastable or smell-able.
IRENE: My suggestion to you and Peter is to take this scientific stand, which I had taken with Richard so many, many times over the years, in order to be totally intimate with him and listen to his every word as if this was the ultimate truth spoken to me for the very first time... so I wanted to listen. < ... >
What I’d want you to do is exactly this: find the place in yourself, where you are without any prejudice, pre-conceived ideas, hostility, aggression, defence and suspicious conclusions that you have firmly formed about me, Irene, in the last year or so.
Suppose that I have found the way to live in peace as authentically me and that I’d love you both to have this experience, purely for the good of all of us...
VINEETO: I think it is great you found a way to live in peace as authentically you, and I appreciate that you can enjoy that now after having settled down in you cute cozy place. I don’t quite understand what you mean by ‘for the good of all of us’. For me there is no ‘all of us’, no group that I belong to. I am on my own and perfectly happy to be so. This is one of the successes I had with Richard’s method, that I no longer need other people’s approval for my doing right or wrong.
This is how I function. Once I found something that I want to do with my life and I have checked that out thoroughly, I do it 100%. This is what I did when I was with Rajneesh for 17 years. I was with the movement and all the follies, with all of me. Only this way could I clearly determine that it had failed, not because of me, but because spirituality didn’t work.
Now I am giving it a 100% with Richard’s method. I have checked it out and found it worth giving my full go. You could compare it to a relationship. When I am happy with one man, why should I go around flirting like a single? If that relationship gives me all I have ever aspired for, I stop turning my head after every other man. It is that simple.
And there has been such success with actualism that I won’t change course, whatever proposal anyone is offering. You don’t change horses in mid-race, especially when you are sitting on the winning horse. After hanging out with Peter for 18 months and being constantly together with him for 24 hours a day for five months we continue to live in perfect peace and harmony, equity and intimacy. In endless discussions with Peter, using Richard’s discoveries, I have been able to clean myself up to an extent that all my meditation-techniques and group-experiences pale in insignificance. There are no deep grudges, not even light ones, no grumpiness, no indulgence in moods, no desperate days and weeks, no depression, no anxiety about personal issues or appearance – all troubles I used to have plenty of in my spiritual times. There is now even an understanding from my own experience about the ‘space’ where the Enlightened Ones dwell in that I could never grasp when I was busy meditating. And life is such a thrill, such a pleasure, such a wonderful adventure as never before.
So tell me, from my standpoint, why should I change course now – even as a trial run? It does not make sense. I think you will understand my reasoning as not being against you and your findings. They may well work for you. But I have simply set my goal posts and I won’t let them go out of sight.
IRENE: I know that you will be tempted right now to condemn me as ‘lost the plot in the glamour and glitz of enlightenment’ and dismiss me outright. But suppose that this is not the case (my opinion on enlightenment has not shifted an inch) and each of your reactions, emotions, opinions you are having about me right now, are the very prejudices, pre-conceived and post-conceived ideas I know are in the way of your taking that scientific, unbiased stand, without the slightest expectation for the outcome, so therefore completely open-minded for investigative purpose.
VINEETO: I don’t know how you got this idea that I consider you lost in enlightenment. I have never said that. And to call each of my possible reactions prejudices, before you know what I am going to say, is simply bad-mouthing. This way you won’t be likely to convince anybody.
Peter stated in his letter to you the difference between your approach and our experiment, and I don’t need to add more. You may call me unscientific, I don’t mind. I am mad in everyone’s eyes including my own, but this madness is so thrilling and delicious that I won’t give it up for any ‘sanity’ I have experienced before.
Nevertheless I am interested in your findings up to now and on the way, just because I am fascinated as to what you make of life after all the experiences and experiments you have already had. We could still compare notes, in case such an unconditional exchange is of any interest for you. It has been great learning and good fun to exchange with you, Irene.
IRENE: I enjoyed our talk this afternoon, Vineeto. We should do this more often, as our communication seems to go a lot smoother than via the ‘copper wire’!
VINEETO: Yes, Irene, I enjoyed it very much chatting with you on Monday, each telling our respective stories. This is what I meant by comparing notes and unconditional exchange. It was a delight. I am very happy to leave the ‘copper wire’ communication and resume chats during a cup of coffee with you.
Nevertheless, I want to respond to your statements, just to put the facts straight from my side:
IRENE: Yes Vineeto, talking about daily things in life together we do well together, no philosophy, but small talk. For me though, it isn’t interesting enough to spend more than an hour or so on, unless there is some indication that we both are interested in going a bit deeper than the immediate surface. For that a mutual respect is necessary, which is not there from you to me, as you can only respect Richard and with that you discriminate against all others, you set yourself apart from whomever doesn’t put their 100% into Richard’s way. As you have already decided that he is the winning horse, you can only regard me and all others as the losers. The fact that you see it as a race at all, shows that there is quite a substantial ambition to win in you; yet winning and power have no worth for me; I prefer authenticity because it invites rather than alienates others.
VINEETO: There are two misunderstandings. I never called Richard ‘the winning horse’ and I never said ‘all others are the losers’. If I may remind you, I had written:
The ‘winning horse’ is not Richard but my life, my intention and ongoing success in cleaning myself up completely. How can Richard be a horse? I say that using his method is successful for me; that everyone else should therefore be a loser is your interpretation.
I compared my life with a horserace, because the speed with which I seem to race towards happiness and elimination of my psychological and psychic entity is breathtaking like a horserace – it being Melbourne Cup day lately. So my only ambition to win is to be free myself, and whatever anybody else is doing with their lives is completely their perfect choice. Nevertheless, it is always delightful to find out what it is that others are doing with their lives.
Looking forward to our next meeting.
IRENE to Peter: Do you really call this ‘a new way lying 180 degrees opposite all the other spiritualities and religions’...???
This way of zealously ‘winning souls’ for the greater glory of the man who originated the sect or religion or way of life, is so typical and predictable for all new sects, and something so obvious to everybody else. The new disciples themselves are usually unaware of their fanaticism, yet instantly rail against it when recognizing it in disciples of other masters ... and as you well know Peter, that is exactly the sure-fire way to war, that you and I would like so much to replace with peace amongst people ... if I take your words sincerely?
VINEETO: It is time that I put what you wrote to Peter about Richard, Grace, Peter and myself into a bigger perspective and correct some of your statements, just for the records.
It is good you stated so clearly that you have no grudges or reactions towards any person, otherwise one could have interpreted your writing as an expression of grudge against Richard, Grace, Peter or myself.
When you left on Wednesday so early, I particularly had asked you, if there was anything you were not comfortable with. You then said: ‘I am bored, but don’t worry, it has nothing to do with you or anybody here, don’t take it personally.’ Everyone around me has heard you state this.
Well, you said you got bored...
May I ask which of your two comments about the same occasion is authentic, what you said on Wednesday or what you wrote two days after?
But on Wednesday afternoon you said in the group,
IRENE: ‘how nice it would be to all die together in a tidal wave in the next cyclone season...’
VINEETO: How can somebody so happy, peaceful, free and delighted with life wish to die and also wish it on others? I know this death wish very well from the years when I objected to being here because I had found life not worth living. This wish to die physically has now completely disappeared.
IRENE: Well-executed lyrics learnt by rote were performed smugly by the 3 chief-disciples in turn, not only boring like hell because of the predictable repetitiveness but alienating in no uncertain terms the other 3 people present, including the hostess... whom you all failed to acknowledge even politely, but simply used as your servant only and a pair of ears...
I couldn’t help but noticing the austere and churchlike atmosphere you four people were intent on creating and on purpose I started giggling to compensate for this malicious atmosphere, that already had caused one person to walk away in disgust. But even then you didn’t wonder about yourselves being of harmful intent... so much easier to blame it all on the other who couldn’t instantly warm to your new teaching and put him down for his ‘obstinacy’ to learn ‘peaceful and harmonious’ co-existence from you guys..., especially Vineeto who kept on ramming it home like a fanatic novice.
VINEETO: I think you are the only one who perceived and interpreted the afternoon like this. It looks more a fantasy story to me as you describe it. I have only yesterday met the person who presumably ‘walked away in disgust’. I particularly asked him and he affirmed that he did not feel offended. As for the hostess, she seemed to enjoy the long evening hours with us and said so. She even provided everyone with socks, so we could stay on in the chill of the evening. Are you interpreting their feelings for them? Or was it intuition from your side, influenced by how you felt in the situation yourself?
As for ‘chief-disciples’ – there will be a draw from the hat for the chief of all chief-disciples and other disciples on January 1, 1999. Applications can be placed on this mailing list, deadline: December 31, 11.59pm. Necessary qualifications: none. The elected chief disciple will then be sitting in the front row of the discourses that never happen.
IRENE: The Wide and Wondrous Path ...???
As I have originated the bleeding phrase myself some years ago, I feel rightfully justified in reminding you that I never had in mind that the ‘trodders’ on this path (including me) would regularly need to retreat into the magical long grass along the side of this path and beat themselves up first with all kind of ridiculous self-admonishments and then sink into the bare-pit of fear, dread, malice, evil and plain yukkiness, in order to ‘exterminate this self forever’ and then having to vomit out the nausea of hell itself, literally.
VINEETO: I don’t know where you got the picture of the ‘the magical long grass along the side of this path’ – I have never heard anybody talk about the grass along the side of the path – where presumably people ‘beat themselves up first with all kind of ridiculous self-admonishments and then sink into the bare-pit of fear, dread, malice, evil and plain yukkiness, in order to ‘exterminate this self forever’?’ Is that a description of what you did on your wide and wondrous path when living with Richard or is it an invention as to what the so-called ‘chief-disciples’ all do ‘regularly’ – some kind of ‘actual-freedom-dynamic meditation à la Rajneesh’?
I simply scrutinize myself for remainders of the Human Condition in me whenever they occur, because I want to be free from conditioning and instincts. I did discover dread on this journey once and I am glad it did not last very long. Experiencing dread, however, gave me the useful understanding of the back-side of enlightenment and a warning which route not to take. It is definitely nothing I would ‘sink into’ ‘regularly’.
To be free from the ‘self’ in peak-experiences has been such an exquisite experience each time, vastly superior to any emotion I ever knew, however sweet, that I want to live in that state 24 hours a day. But it involves none of the above-described procedures, they are simply your phantasies and invented horror-stories as far a I am concerned. Please don’t assume and invent things that are going on for me, which are not the case.
IRENE: As far as ‘hanging out’ together, I hope you will understand that I really cannot see myself spending any more voluntary time with more than one of you, let alone the whole group.
VINEETO: And yet there were several evenings just in the last month in your cozy little caravan with Richard, Grace, Peter and myself, which you obviously enjoyed, and you have confirmed that you enjoyed the time with us. Has something happened in the meantime that made you change your mind or your feelings?
No other person than you has been able to make me so livid and repulsed, for a long, long time, Vineeto. Congratulations, and I don’t mean this facetiously at all; you unblocked me in my own personal ‘keeping up appearances’, where I was, strangely, still holding on to Richard’s ‘proof of being free’, namely his inability to recognise and express any feelings at all. As you know this is a well-known neurological or psychiatric disorder, called alexithymia. Richard himself has been quite open about this to whomever wants to listen to him and who is nevertheless drawn to emulate this for their own ‘peace’ of mind, calling him even ‘the most sane man ever lived...’
To expect an authentic and honest interaction with such a person – and you may very well be afflicted by the same deficiency yourself – is more stupid on behalf of me than anything else. It’s called bashing my head against the brick wall of my own misunderstanding, my stubborn persistence in seeing the beautiful potential in others and with that my reluctance in acknowledging their anti-natural tendencies because of their own fear and hubris, which show themselves anyway no matter how well covered over with flowery words and proud performance ...
I have found it incredibly helpful to have been so ‘woken up’ by you, so thank you for having been who you are, Vineeto. It leaves us now free to pursue our own respective ways. I wish you all the self-awareness you can muster ... Irene
VINEETO: I am glad to hear that what I was – whatever that was – has been the trigger for your ‘waking up to more vividness’ if I understand you rightly. I can relate to your description when I remember the great liberating experiences when a held-back or not noticed emotion in me finally broke through and was acknowledged.
And then there is this issue of alexithymia that I would like to talk about and explore with you. You said,
IRENE: ... Richard’s ‘proof of being free’ [is] namely his inability to recognise and express any feelings at all. As you know this is a well-known neurological or psychiatric disorder, called alexithymia.
VINEETO: Nevertheless, it seems to me that what psychiatrists call alexithymia is an incapability of someone to cope with certain or all his/her emotions and therefore he/she has a neurological reaction in the nervous system that shuts up the feeling faculty altogether. I would put that into the category of extreme repression, beyond the reach of consciousness. While Richard says about his condition:
Actual freedom for me means that I investigate and in this way eliminate the cause and the source of emotions – be they personal, self-centred or universal – and after removing the cause they simply don’t occur any more. For instance insult: it was one of the first things I learned when meeting you and Richard, that one can choose to become un-insult-able. This possibility appealed very much to me from the very beginning. What an awful hindrance for communications it has always been for me when I would get insulted by what someone said, and then I could not continue talking to that person. Then I was the one who was suffering because of feeling insulted, resentful and lonely on top of it.
Irene, there is no hidden agenda in my story. I simply want to explain why I began to consider it a good idea to get rid of emotional reactions. Feeling insulted is only one example of all the disturbing emotions that not only made a peaceful life with men and women difficult and in the long run impossible. First, of course, I only considered to get rid of the bad emotions, later I saw that they all hang together in one piece. ‘Getting rid of’ for me means that whenever I came across a hiccup – in the beginning it was mostly triggered by Peter – I would try and find out the hidden agenda of this particular emotion. Maybe this is all old chocolate for you, but this ‘getting rid of’ has so often been misunderstood as repression. I am definitely not a proposer of repressing any emotions, I have done that long enough and achieved no peace whatsoever by it. All the feelings pop up one day anyway.
In sannyas I have experimented with expressing emotions. Lots of therapy-groups, seven times I was a helper in the ‘Anti-Fischer-Hoffman-Process’, an intense de-conditioning for childhood issues. I went into the group again and again, fascinated by the tantamount and variety of emotion that each participant was capable of producing. Therapy works for a while, it produces great highs, you certainly know similar highs from groups you have done. But observing over a longer period of time I could see that one trigger for emotions was thrown out but soon, on that seemingly empty ground, there grew some other emotions, maybe they got dressed up with a different story because the root cause had not been removed.
Especially after the first AFH-group (Anti-Fisher-Hoffman, a very intense primal group) this was very obvious for me. After a process of ten days expressing first hate and fear, then love and forgivingness, I was left rather confusingly empty of applicable behaviour how to relate. But that changed quickly within a week or two. I had not questioned or removed the beliefs of who I thought and felt I was. I had only changed some fears related to my parents. But, for instance, all other authority-issues had remained. It never occurred to me then that I could question the very act of believing itself!
I know what you mean when you talk about the vividness of a strong emotion, high voltage and an intense feeling of being more alive than ever. But I also remember experiencing the painful clamp of being possessed when in raging anger, the gnawing tortured need in jealousy, and desperation and hopelessness in deep grief. I prefer to be fully alive without this kind of intensity. How is it for you?
Well, as you may know, my edifice of associated beliefs tumbled, the further and deeper I was digging into my psyche. It left me with an easy access to the actual world, here, fresh, intimate, and bubbling with aliveness – and less and less hiccups (2nd time! Peter just used the word, I like it too). Of course, with each step away from what I had learned and used all my life there was fear but also adventure, thrill, curiosity and the continuous joy of discovery. It eventually turns out to have its own momentum... no place to go back to. How could I ever believe in a life after death again or in enlightenment! Could you?
IRENE: ‘I can’t see you do much harm, though, in your frantic fanaticism. Other people have told me in confidence how they feel repulsed by you in the same way as you yourself freaked out when meeting a fanatic disciple of another ‘creed’ a few weeks ago.
VINEETO: Bye the way, that experience with the ‘fanatic disciple of another ‘creed’ a few weeks ago’ was not because I was ‘repulsed by’ his creed. You managed to re-interpret again.
When this ‘fanatic disciple’ talked about the damage Hitler and fascism had done and about the guilt and remorse he felt about his father’s deeds, I suddenly experienced the immensity of his emotions, both his guilt and his extremely vehement urge to seek the love of his God... it was so overwhelming that I had to leave the room for a while and later asked him briskly to leave. Repulsion, in my understanding, is an instinctual response to events, and I did not experience this at all. Again this is your interpretation.
About the other people – they tell you something ‘in confidence’ and you publish it on the mailing-list?
But I have been chatting on long enough now. I had started my story because I wanted to compare notes. How come and what is your understanding, that you consider emotions as valuable, desirable, worth keeping, at least some of them? I am obsessed in that once I see something, as in the peak-experience, and a method how to get closer and closer to that state experienced in the peak-experience, I go for it.
So, Irene, this is what came out when I started to write to you – it’s a very curious business, life, isn’t it?
Good night, Irene
Vineeto’s & Richard’s Text ©The Actual Freedom Trust: 1997-. All Rights Reserved.