Selected Correspondence Vineeto
Love, Divine Love and Intimacy
RESPONDENT: Anyway Vineeto. I read your entire letter and found nothing in it that gives me the impression that spending $375 (less discount) on a joyful playful weekend of moving closer to the state we are discussing on this Actual Freedom list would be a waste for you. On the contrary. You may move further into the Actual Intimacy that you are clearly beginning to find in your life.
VINEETO: You must be kidding. Just before you said –
... and now you talk about a ‘joyful playful weekend of moving closer’. Am I moving ‘further into an Actual Intimacy’ or am I stuck in ‘the tiny trotting circuit that (my) mind currently runs in’? It does appear as though your categorizations of me are somewhat confused and contradictory.
You have already indicated what you mean by ‘playful’ as in teasing, pulling one’s tail etc. I prefer the game of becoming happy and harmless – what we call the only game to play in town. How you come to the conclusion that a workshop, lead by a spiritual therapist who espouses ‘emotional freedom’, ‘authenticity, love, friendship and meaning’ has anything to do with what ‘we are discussing on this Actual Freedom list’ is a complete mystery to me. Maybe it would help your understanding to read some of the 1.5 million words on the Actual Freedom web site with both eyes open.
As for ‘the state we are discussing on this Actual Freedom list’ –
I know what *you* are discussing on this Actual Freedom list but I am talking about freeing myself from my social identity and my instinctual passions, in short, facilitating a final extinction of my ‘self’.
Tantra has nothing to do with an actual intimacy – Tantra does not questions god, or love, or emotions and has not even begun to acknowledge, let alone question, the instinctual passions as the underlying cause of human behaviour.
As for ‘the Actual Intimacy that you are clearly beginning to find in your life’ –
There are no capital letters in the actual intimacy that I am talking about, for there is no god, no love and no affective imagination in my intimacy with others as it is actual, tangible, palpable and not subject to the whims of emotions. I have found the actuality of such direct intimacy and I am enjoying it hour for hour, day after day, so much so that I take it for granted now. I even have trouble comprehending why everybody obviously has this need to quarrel and fight, when they are together.
How about you? Has any of the workshops you are offering helped you to ‘move further into Actual Intimacy’? How is your relationship improving in practice by the ‘Art of Emotional Freedom’, taught by your friend Veeresh? After all, an offered solution to someone else can only be sincere and honest if one has tried it out for oneself and confirmed by one’s own experience that it works.
VINEETO: Now meeting someone who needs help at a road accident is a rather rare situation in order to practice actual caring – help as action rather than feeling sympathy – whereas when I started to pay attention to my daily routine of interactions with people, and became more sensitive how my words and actions where affecting not just myself but even more so my fellow human beings, … Vineeto, The Actual Freedom Trust Mailing List, No 60, 6.8.2006
RESPONDENT: Mmm ... Now I wonder why Richard doesn’t pay more attention to this before he pumps out his aggressive replies, and why you so defensively and dishonestly, pretend that he does?
VINEETO: Whereas I wonder why someone who claims not to experience a ‘mean and miserable me/I/self’ and claims to be ‘thoroughly enjoying this actual world’ would mount not just one but three unsubstantiated accusations in a single sentence – that Richard ‘doesn’t pay more attention’, that he ‘pumps out his aggressive replies’ and that Vineeto is ‘defensively and dishonestly’ pretending ‘that he does’.
I have known Richard personally for more than eight years now and never ever have I experienced him to be aggressive, not even irritated or impatient with people, neither in face-to-face interactions nor in his writings. Maybe it’s time for a spoonful or two of your own medicine.
VINEETO: I could easily see in what way I could replace a feeling compassion for the suffering all of human kind (which has no tangible effect whatsoever except on me who is feeling it) with an active and tangible change in the way I treat people in my immediate surrounding.
RESPONDENT: I always have difficulty with this one.
VINEETO: You are not the first. Here is an example of what someone wrote many years ago with a remarkably similar agenda to your own –
It is simply not possible to preserve the good emotions and discard, or distance oneself from, the bad emotions – this has been tried for 5000 years of recorded history and peace on earth is nowhere in sight. If you want to be free from the human condition then the instinctual passions will have to go as a whole package, nurture included.
RESPONDENT: Why does actualism/actualists see the good feelings as ineffective motivators of practical actual caring, i.e. compassion as having [quote] no tangible effect whatsoever except on me who is feeling it [unquote] but eagerly acknowledges the bad feelings as motivating all the murder and mayhem in the world?
VINEETO: In a ‘self’-less pure consciousness experience it is readily observable that both the loving and desirable feelings as well as the hostile and invidious feelings are but two sides of the same coin and that both arise out of the instinctual animal survival package. Not only are the good feelings ineffective to eliminate suffering and violence, they actually contribute to it. Emotional caring only cares for those one feels connected with and will always exclude those who don’t fall into that category. Furthermore, actualism doesn’t state that ‘all the murder and mayhem’ is only motivated by the bad feelings but that it is caused by the whole of the instinctual survival package every human is endowed with at birth.
VINEETO: For me, I have set my goal to become free from having a psyche – the instinctual ‘being’ arising from the instinctual passions of fear aggression, nurture and desire – and as a part of this process I found I was compelled to investigate and eliminate all of my beliefs, be they related to my gender, nationality, culture, religion, spirituality, metaphysics, materialistic values, societal morals, dietary mythology, health myths or sexual taboos. The very action of daring to examine and expose all of one’s beliefs significantly weakens one’s identity such that one comes to directly experience the raw instinctual passions that lay hidden beneath this outer layer of cultural conditioning that constitutes one’s social identity and thus one is able to get a clearer understanding of what it is that generates one’s ‘being’ or psyche. The next step is to leave instinctually-driven Humanity behind.
RESPONDENT: It’s not so easy to deal with the seductive powers of love, wonder and beauty in comparison to the ‘bad’ passions triggered by fear and aggression.
VINEETO: To clarify – the ability to wonder is not necessarily one of the ‘seductive’ good emotions because it can also be the felicitous fascinated perception of the fairytale-like marvel of the actual world. Having said that, I can also understand that it does take a good deal of attentiveness in order to separate wonder from emotions such as awe, love and beauty –
RESPONDENT: As an example, my current partner is an open, beautiful, kind and compassionate human being, she’s very much centred on the ‘good’ side. She’s also very practical and intelligent and I’m having a hard time to point out any flaws in her and I wonder whether that’s because I love her.
VINEETO: And why would you want to point out any flaws in your companion? When I made the commitment to look at everything that is in the road of my having a happy and harmonious companionship with Peter I only needed to look at my ‘flaws’, my grumpiness, my neediness, my demands, my moods, my resentments, my complaints, etc. and then I set about changing myself in order to become as flawless as one can be whilst still being a ‘being’.
RESPONDENT: I should also say that I’m not a romantic, my life-attitudes and interests are better described by the Dune series of Frank Herbert. But when I look into her clear and beautiful green eyes there’s something I would definitely call wonder... It’s like I’m looking into her ‘soul’ and it’s so ...pure. It seems that no ‘evil’ could ever lie dormant there.
VINEETO: When one is in love there is no assessment of ‘silly’ and ‘sensible’ – one judges with one’s feelings and the other is either good, beautiful, lovable, adorable and pure or bad, unappealing, repulsive or ‘evil’. In love one is in the grip of intense passion and as such what you ‘definitely call wonder’ seems more likely to be feelings such as love, beauty, awe and adulation. I am reminded of the story of how Richard was able to see the other face of Love –
RESPONDENT: I find the above harder to investigate as it is the ‘good’ and ‘beautiful’ side of Being, that part that is so pleasing and fascinating to be with. It’s also hard not to reciprocate the other’s feelings when the other is standing ‘naked’ in front of you (without the usual barriers, fears or defences), that complete and genuine openness that is possible in the intimacy of a relationship. It invites... love from my part.
VINEETO: When I met Peter I soon fell in love with him and then I began to inquire into the pros and cons of this intense feeling. For me the major set-back to the feeling of love that I encountered was pining – I soon came to be aware that the feeling of pining I experienced deep in my belly whenever Peter wasn’t around was deleterious because it meant that I could not be happy whenever I was on my own. I also realized that pining meant I wasn’t able to be fully here in this place in this moment of time enjoying whatever I was doing because I was busy dreaming about either some past time when I was with him or anticipating some future time with him. Being a practical person I decided not to let this pining spoil my life, even if I had to let go of something I thought as being precious to me – and I’ve told the story in my journal.
Another aspect of love that soon became clear to me was that being in love was inextricably intertwined with me perceiving another person as being an extension of ‘my’ world – he was ‘my man’ and consequently I wanted to mould him according to ‘my’ image, fitting into ‘my world’. Of course this was aggravated by the fact that in past relationships the other, being in love with me, felt exactly the same way – he wanted me to fit into his ‘extended world’. I remembered how this mutual desire for the other to fit one’s inevitable image of ‘the loved one’ had resulted in ongoing disappointment, disagreement and endless power struggles and I was determined to finally put a stop to this whole scenario by stopping playing my part in the game.
Yes, I know that at first ‘it’s also hard not to reciprocate the other’s feelings’ but I found it was only hard as long as I myself had not made a sincere inquiry into the nature of my feelings of love and traced them to their core. Once I recognized that my feelings of love were arising from the instinctual passions of nurture and desire, I saw that love is in fact purely ‘self’-serving in that it serves my identity of being a lover and of being loved. I began to see how I squeezed the other into an image of my dreams – in fact I never got to meet the actual person as long as I was intoxicated by my feelings of love.
Actual intimacy, the direct experience of the other, only happens when love is out of the way because then and only then I am capable of seeing the other as a fellow human being and only then will I perceive what of my feelings and actions are harmful or beneficial to the other.
RESPONDENT: What ‘to do’ when I get in touch with my companion ‘soul’? It’s clear that I cannot make it disappear ... and it’s hungry for affection.
VINEETO: When you truly care you will dare to offer her actual care and consideration and an actual intimacy instead of the usual feeling substitutes in the form of love and affection.
RESPONDENT: What I want to say is that I sometimes feel imprisoned in our relationship despite the fact that I cannot find any major flaws in my partner’s character. I wonder why I feel so? Is it because this ‘good’ side of Being has its own unwritten conditions, demands and expectations that are projected onto the other and thus ‘trap’ him into a role to play? Or is it because of my own ‘inner’ constraints?
VINEETO: It is love itself that is the trap – love inevitably has ‘unwritten conditions, demands and expectations’ – invisible and unspoken strings that tie you to the one you love and it is these strings that result in feelings of entrapment or imprisonment. I experienced them as an instinctual bond similar to an umbilical cord that connected the core of my ‘being’ to the other’s ‘being’ and even with the best of intentions I could not help but being directly connected to the other’s various feelings and moods, vibes and impulses and directly pass on my own feelings and moods, vibes and impulses to the other. When I became aware of the extent of the reciprocal strings of love, it was clear that I could not remain in love and be harmless at the same time.
RESPONDENT: So... I wonder what has happened to Vineeto and Peter, did meditation not work for them?
VINEETO: meditation did not work for me because by practicing meditation for many years I became more and more insular, more and more aloof, more and more detached and thus more and more dissociated from what was actually going on.
Meditation did not work for me because I never could quite loose track of what I really wanted from life, which is living in peace here on earth, in the world-as-it-is with people-as-they-are and not, as I found I was as a spiritualist, being aloof, empty-minded, removed and dissociated from being here.
The sensate-only experiencing of actuality in a PCE was the final proof that meditation did not, and never could, deliver the goods.
RESPONDENT: I remember a long time ago listening to a Bhagwan-tape, he mentioned two path’s to attain fulfilment, the one being Meditation the other a LOVERS-relationship. I guess that is Peter’s and Vineeto’s and likely Richards path though they will probably deny it that’s fine and it is not important anyway. My own alternative for Love is friendship, not too exclusive though.
VINEETO: Your guess is so way off track that I wonder if you have read anything at all in these years you have been on this mailing list, let alone dared to take it in. This is what Peter has written in his journal about the process he underwent when he investigated his feelings of love for me (that was in 1997) –
. Peter’s Journal, Love
I have given a similarly detailed report about tackling love and leaving it behind in order to allow actual intimacy become apparent (that was also in 1997) –
And here is just one example of what Richard has said about the path of a ‘LOVERS-relationship’ –
Here is another –
It would aid the accuracy of your guesses if you made the effort to become a little bit more informed. Actualists are always upfront in what they are on about if you care to read what we have to say, which only begs the question as to why you waste your time writing to this mailing list when you have already ‘reached a plateau of relative happy and harmlessness’ by practicing meditation and state that ‘there’s no other way for me than meditation’.
RESPONDENT: If your husband or companion asks you ‘Do you still love [or care for] me darling?’
VINEETO: Love has no place in the intimacy we share.
RESPONDENT: Do you reply ‘What I said 3 years ago is as valid today as what I say today’?
VINEETO: It was perfect three years ago and it is perfect today.
RESPONDENT: Always committed to the past! What is freedom then?
VINEETO: As it is your idea that I am committed to the past, your rhetorical question is irrelevant.
Besides, I wonder why you judge my report of how to become virtually free from the human condition, something entirely new to human history, as being ‘too old’, yet you consider Jiddu Krishnamurti’s tried and failed bronze-age Advaita-Hinduism as being relevant today. It’s the second time I am asking this, maybe this time you could be so kind to answer?
RESPONDENT: May silence be with you.
VINEETO: Talking about silence … in your conversation with actualists have you ever, even for a single moment, considered listening to anybody but yourself? I only say this because you have amply demonstrated that your ‘silence’ is full of empty words whereas the vast stillness here in this actual world is unimaginable – it has to be experienced.
RESPONDENT: I’ve been down the detachment path too, but found it didn’t cut the mustard at all either. Seemed like the baby with the bath water.
RESPONDENT: Every time I go spelunking in the site, something interesting pops up. You mention love as being one of the hardest to let go of, and this is a real tough spot for me too. I’ve been in a very long-term relationship, which has been strained of late. This whole notion of love is a difficult one, but there’s some interesting dialog you had with Gary at the above link. Before I stumbled on to the AF site, I had determined in my own way that what passes for love seems mostly indistinguishable from mutually interlocking neuroses. OK, that’s fine, but I asked myself if there wasn’t a possibility for man and woman to live together in peace? Well, that’s certainly been answered here, but can I live in peace with this particular woman of many years relationship? That shall come out in the wash, but in the meantime I have no choice but to do this work myself, with strong emphasis on eliminating malice. It has been too easy over the years to build up a nice collection of barbs that I can shoot at her during my own moments of misery.
VINEETO: When I observed my own feelings of love, as well as love stories and soap operas on television, it became obvious that love is the one and only solution that people generate in order to smooth over and cover up all the nasty daily incidents in a relationship. When the going gets tough you can be certain that man and woman profess how much they love each other. The other thing is that love inevitably comes with a whole range of feelings that make life together either a living hell or a second-rate compromise – possessiveness, jealousy, disrespect, ruthlessness, blame and demands for attention, comfort and support.
To become aware of and investigate the feelings of love can be a first step towards genuine intimacy. The secret of living in peace with another person is not love, as is universally believed, but investigating – and eliminating – everything in you that is responsible for causing disharmony, resentment, retreat, detachment, disagreement and misery. You can do this investigation together with the other person – if she is interested – but it works just as well to do it on your own. What had impressed me when I first met Peter was that he was willing to give the experiment of our peaceful living together a hundred percent commitment and that he was, just a I was, determined not to blame or change the other.
RESPONDENT: This bit from Gary registered:
I had a good chuckle, esp. ‘‘slipping’ and telling my partner ‘I love you’’. I’ve been there quite a few times, the words pop out, then I’m something like the deer in the headlights, trying to make sense of what I just said. I’ve been considering love a no-no too, so perhaps taking his tack would be an interesting approach. (Was it, Gary?)
VINEETO: This is a good example of how an ‘ethical safe-guard’ can prevent you from becoming aware of and acknowledging a feeling. By considering the feeling of love a no-no, you might ignore, deny or avoid the feeling of love whenever it occurs and thus you are hampered in investigating it further. For a successful investigation you need an honest and all-inclusive stocktaking.
RESPONDENT: While all this is well and good as a practical bit, I know I run a real risk of the relationship ending. I’m willing to take that as it’s become clear that there are no alternatives. This raises a whole flurry of feelings, around responsibility, shared history, relationship with the progeny, who gets the dog, bla bla bla.
VINEETO: Here is a bit from Peter’s Journal that might be relevant in your situation –
RESPONDENT: So, while poking around in the above vein, I ran across this bit from Richard on Alan’s site:
The good catholic boy in me reacted to this. I have been such a responsible being all my life that this POV is incomprehensible. This is abdication of ALL GOOD CHRISTIAN/ HUMAN PRINCIPLES. Yet at the same time I see the utter plain truth of this.
VINEETO: Personally, everything I owned, did or said and every person I was in contact with had great emotional significance to me as an identity and therefore every change in my familiar circumstances brought about an emotional disturbance. With the method of actualism, I gradually examined and substantially weakened most aspects of my identity and consequently some of my circumstances changed according to what was practical, sensible and beneficent. I gave up my old job, I lost contact with all my former friends and co-seekers, I moved house several times and gave away some of my possessions that had become redundant to me. Yet I still drive a car, live in a house, tend a garden, do a job, but there are no emotional strings attached to that car, that house, that garden or that job.
RESPONDENT: It actually makes my head spin a bit ... definitely some ‘opportunities’ to explore.
VINEETO: This is a good sign, if I may say so, because when your head begins to ‘spin a bit’ then the familiar identity begins to crack … and through this crack you could snatch a glance of the actual world – magnificent, sparkling, pure and perfect.
RESPONDENT: When I up the ante to saying ‘I love you’ because the partner gets a momentary tingle, knowing it feeds the whole neurotic beast, then I have to wonder if I’ve crossed a line. In these sorts of real world situations, I often have trouble determining where that line is. Of course, it’s not really a line, but more like a few hundred yards/metres of grey sloppy stuff. That’s why for the most part I’ve given up even trying to analyze/judge the ‘situation’, and just go with HAIETMOBA/ruthless ferreting. More and more often this results in a surprisingly appropriate response to the ‘situation’.
VINEETO: Back in the years when I valued love, when my partner said to me ‘I love you’ without conveying the feeling of love, I felt cheated and superficially dismissed. As part of my yearning for the highly valued ‘lolly-pop’ of love I developed very sensitive antennas to determine if what I received from a partner was the true feeling. Therefore I wonder if your buying peace by merely saying ‘I love you’ is of any practical use, even as a temporary measure.
Because I had always been unsatisfied with the troubles, dependency and driven-ness of love, when I came across actualism I was ready to investigate love in order to sort it out. Rather than unconditionally demanding the other’s love and conditionally offering mine, I began to examine and ferret out my endless and insatiable need for someone else’s gooey feeling in order to prop up my self-esteem and appease my feelings of emptiness and loneliness.
To do so I explored my feelings of love and my need for love, as they were happening, in order to discover what was the driving force behind those feelings. In order to get to the root of love it was important not to push away or repress my feelings of love and it was equally important not to express, enhance or feed them in any way. So when you ask ‘I wonder if I’ve crossed a line’ then the answer is determined not by a ‘new moral code of actualism’ but by the practical value of exploring your own feelings and beliefs in order that you become more happy and harmless.
When I examined my feelings of love and compassion – the antidotal feelings to malice and sorrow – I discovered something that is far superior to love and compassion. Once I began to observe what it was that made me enjoy the time with Peter, when I did not feel love, I discovered that I enjoyed and valued the mutual undivided attention and the sincerity in talking to each other. And one evening, click, suddenly I ‘saw Peter for the first time’ – meaning, I saw him as a human being, a man sitting across from me, and I had no good or bad feelings towards him whatsoever. And exactly that fact made the being together utterly intimate, there was nothing in the road between us, two actual human beings meeting each other – no expectation, no hope, no fear, no investment, no pulling of invisible strings. It was pure magic.
That experience encouraged me to investigate love, whenever it popped up, no matter what my dreams or fears were that accompanied the investigation. This moment of pure intimacy had been so delicious, so pure, so direct – it surely beats love by many country miles. This is how I have described the quality of intimacy –
This full attention and bare awareness is the genuine article – it is what love always promises but never delivers. So, instead of feeding ‘the whole neurotic beast’ by offering empty words you have the alternative of giving your partner your undivided attention and awareness, and regard and meet her as the fellow human being she is.
RESPONDENT: I’ve just been reading your writings about ‘How to investigate your feelings’ and am currently looking at the teacher, follower, seeker, devotee, authority identities that seem to be the underpinning of all special relationships – I don’t know whether you wrote down you’re questions and inquiry as you looked at your feelings of love and loyalty for your former teacher and all the feelings of abandonment and loss that went with it – I’d really like to read over them or perhaps talk to you a bit about this whole deconstruction process – I really need to see/understand this whole structure of identity plainly and clearly in order to see I can let it go – I used your questions today to have a look at a specific grievance
VINEETO: Personally, it took two months and a lot of discussions with Peter until I began to grasp, and then understand experientially, what the term ‘spiritual’ really means. In my years of spiritual search, the term ‘spiritual’ implied a superior way of life to crass materialism, following the highest aspirations of mankind, a dedication to be good and to be part of the group of people who also aspire to the same goal. The day I finally understood the literal meaning of the word ‘spirit-ual’, a whole new world opened up. Suddenly I understood that I – like everyone else – was producing this spiritual, non-physical world in my head and heart – with my very spirit, so to speak – and this world consisted of spiritual morals, ethics, ideas, beliefs, emotions, loyalties, pride and the belief in the immortality of the soul.
I also began to understand that spirituality teaches one to enhance the ‘good’ affective feelings and distance oneself from /dissociate from the ‘bad’ and unpleasant feelings. One is actively encouraged to indulge one’s intuition, trust, love, loyalty, belief, faith, hope and imagination and is encouraged to ‘feel out’ a situation. This is diametrically opposite to what one needs to do if one aspires to become actually free of the human condition whereby one explores the actuality of the situation by applying thought, common sense, contemplation, practicality, intelligence and undertakes an investigation into verifiable facts of the situation.
Actualism is not really a ‘deconstruction process’ as you call it because when one begins to inquiry into one’s beliefs and discovers that they are based on hearsay, belief, trust and faith and not on facts, they disappear of their own accord, in a similar way as you stopped believing in the existence of a tooth fairy and Santa Claus once you found out the facts of the matter. ‘Deconstruction’ per se could well lead to feelings of utter meaninglessness which in turn can lead to the despairing feelings of nihilism or the angry feelings of anarchy – all of which is in marked contrast to the groundswell of happiness and harmlessness that is revealed if one taps into one’s innate naiveté and dares to run with it as it were.
To get back to your question, in my own process of disentangling myself from being a disciple I discovered two components to religious belief – one was the lure of ‘immortality, Truth, Timelessness’, and my aspiration to achieve an imaginary perfection in enlightenment, and the other was love and loyalty, my affective belief in the master’s ultimate authority and in my inferiority and thus dependency on his wisdom and compassion.
For me, questioning authority itself and tracing it back to my belief in God, by whatever name, was the first step out of the spiritual world, and questioning the authority of the master (either as a God-like figure or a father-like figure or as a bit of both) was the second step. When my belief in and my need for authority disappeared, my feelings of love and loyalty for the master successively disappeared as well. I was then able to watch videotapes of Rajneesh’s discourses without the blinding/ distorting veil of love and trust, and I squirmed in disbelief at the lies, inanities, half-truths, power games and outright ancient mumble jumble that was suddenly revealed. In my spiritual years I had used the discourses as a hypnotic device to be lulled into ‘silencing the mind’, feeling good and feeling love for all – however, this time, without the affective cloak the ‘great words of Wisdom’ looked shockingly inane.
Of course, for some time I tried to find excuses for Rajneesh as well as the other god-men, but eventually that turned out to be an impossible task the more I allowed myself to admit to having been conned through and through by one who was a master of his trade. God-men are nothing but con men, sucking and luring admiring disciples into their scheme of self-aggrandizement, and most of the time they seem to be convinced of their own delusion. But they are bound to have times of doubt or even clarity, when the delusion is less thick – that’s why Richard says the enlightened ones have ‘feet of clay’. Nobody except Richard, particularly no enlightened master, has ever dared to ask the obvious question – why, with all this all-encompassing Love and Compassion is there no improvement upon peace on earth after 3,500 years of enlightened history? They claim to have all the knowledge and yet they are leading everyone into the land of fantasy and fervent imagination.
However, when I first started to investigate the issue of my spiritual loyalty, my thoughts tended to shift from this uncomfortable subject as a way of avoiding the issue, I invented diversions and furphies not to stick to the issue at hand, I experienced hot and cold flushes, I caught myself wanting to start a fight, I suddenly became tired if confronted with the issue, etc. … you might get the picture. The whole cunning ‘me’ swung into action so as to desperately defend ‘my’ precious beliefs and feelings in exactly the same way an addict feels that he is fighting for survival when his drugs are withdrawn.
Only sincere intent and stubborn determination to get to the bottom of this addiction-like dependency on being a believing, belonging and feeling ‘being’ allows one to continue whittling away at whatever stands in the way of becoming unconditionally happy and harmless.
RESPONDENT: I’ve been holding for which was acutely triggered 5 years ago and really it had been triggered by the same one 6 years before that – there seems to be every human issue that could arise bound up with this one and I’m a bit at a loss how to really delve into it and get my teeth into it and get some real deconstruction happening rather than just floating around on the surface – Please let me know if I could speak to you sometime or have a look at how you got into and approached these relationships.
VINEETO: As an actualist I discovered that in order to get to the roots of my feelings of love and loyalty I had to have a close look at my general attitude towards authority, something that had plagued me in most of my relationships during my life. I discovered that the only way to stand on my own two feet was to tackle and dissolve the emotionally charged issue of authority. I had to look at all of my feelings towards people who I ascribed authority to, particularly those who claimed a special knowledge of what was right and wrong, true and untrue, good and bad – in short, a moral, ethical and spiritual authority. I realized their power over me was derived from and maintained by my belief that there is an ultimate absolute authority in those matters, a Supreme Ruler of moral codes, a Weigher of Souls, a Divine Intelligence, a Big Daddy, a Higher Power of some sort who instated and enforced those values. It didn’t make any difference that I had abandoned the belief in a personal God in my youth because the spiritual belief in an all-encompassing divine energy running the universe kept me obedient, dependant and fearful.
The final realisation that dissolved my problems with authority forever is recorded in ‘A Bit of Vineeto’ –
For me, the end of God was at the same time the end of hope, trust, faith and postponement, the end of debilitating waiting and cowardly pondering, the end of humbling myself in the face of an almighty invisible power, the end of a stupefying fear of God’s judgement of my right and wrong deeds. The end of my belief in God also freed me of the belief/trust in and the loyalty for God’s earthly representatives such as my former master and all the righteous moral authorities that I had either dutifully followed and/or dutifully rebelled against. The end of my belief in God and my belief in an afterlife marked the beginning of standing on my own two feet with dignity and joy and for the very first time of relying on my intelligence and my common sense to find out the meaning of life for myself.
VINEETO: The reason I said that there is a remarkable difference between *feeling* harmless and actually being harmless is because it is easy to assess one’s happiness by checking if I am feeling happy whereas many people may feel themselves to be harmless when they are not experiencing feelings of aggression or anger against somebody. Yet they are nevertheless causing harm via their thoughtless ‘self’-oriented instinctual feelings and actions, something that all human beings are prone to do unless they become fully aware of their instinctual passions *before* these translate into vibes and/or actions.
It was about a year into my process of actualism when I became aware of how much my outlook on the world and on people had changed in that my cloak of myopic ‘self’-centredness began to lift and I no longer saw the world only ‘my’ way and my judgments and actions no longer revolved around ‘my’ interests, ‘my’ beliefs, ‘my’ ideas, ‘my’ ideals, ‘my’ fears, ‘my’ desires and ‘my’ aversions. Consequently I have learnt to judge harmlessness by the amount of parity and consideration I apply to others whom I come in contact with, both at work and at play, and not by merely feeling myself to be harmless.
RESPONDENT: Can you say more about this? I usually feel harmless but have been thinking lately that I somehow still do harm simply by not paying attention and applying parity and consideration to others with whom I come into contact. How did you do this more and more? And how did you notice that you’re still harming someone even if you don’t have feelings of anger or aggression or the like? And how do you know it’s you harming them? Can you give a few examples? I’m finding it possible to consider this matter more now that I’m happier as its given me breathing room to be less self-centred, but it’s a pretty new subject to me. What keeps your mind on being considerate? Is it just a close scrutiny on the feelings and passions that arise? Are you more perceptive of others because the feelings and passions that are now arising are diminished so you’re naturally more attentive to other things as well, like what’s going on with other people?
VINEETO: Sure. When I met Peter I was full of good intentions to make our living together work, i.e. to be as happy and peaceful as possible, but I had continuous clashes of opinion with him, frustrations of foiled expectation, hurt feelings and revenge of hurtful remarks. I realized that in order to be able live with Peter in peace and harmony I had to sort out a lot – my beliefs, my ‘truths’, my loyalties, my gender ideas, my problems with authority and all other sorts of feelings.
I remember well the first evening when I looked at Peter and saw him as just another human being – not as a partner, a mate, a member of the other gender, a lover, a sexual object, a valuable addition to my circle of friends, and not as someone who would approve or disapprove of me – simple another fellow human being. Suddenly the separation I felt was gone and there was a delicious intimacy, as ‘I’ was no longer attempting to force him to fit into ‘my’ world.
I was astounded and shocked by this experience, being outside of my so familiar ‘self’-centred and ‘self-oriented skin, because I realized that never before, not once in our 3-months acquaintance, had I been able, or even interested, to see him as a person in his own right. I was shocked at how all of my perception and consequently all of my interactions were driven by what *I* wanted, what *I* expected and what *I* believed him to be and how much I was therefore constantly at odds with how he actually was. From then on I paid as much attention as possible to become aware of situations when my feelings, beliefs, expectations and general attitude were standing in the way of recognizing another person, first Peter and later anyone I came in contact with, as equal fellow human beings, as persons in their own right, who live their own life, follow their own goals and aspirations, have their own preferences and tastes, and also, have their own set of morals, ethics and beliefs.
The reason I am telling this story is because this experience was the beginning of a slow and wide-ranging realization that as long as I live in ‘my’ world – made up of ‘my’ worldview, ‘my’ beliefs, opinions, feelings and survival passions – I cannot help but struggle to fit everyone into ‘my’ world, as actors on the stage of ‘my’ play, so to speak, as family and aliens, as friends and enemies, as ‘good people and ‘bad’ people. And not only am ‘I’ busy trying to do this, everyone else – all six billion of us – are equally struggling to fit everyone into ‘their’ world.
It then comes as no surprise that being actually harmless is out of the question – until ‘I’ more and more leave centre-stage, stop resenting being here, stop being stressed, take myself less seriously, take notice of other people the way they are and start enjoying life.
RESPONDENT: Thanks for your email. Yes, the instincts of nurture, desire, malice, fear and the related feelings of longing, anger, hate, depression, love, attachment, etc should be thoroughly investigated in one’s psyche so that when they arise next time they lose their grip on my behaviour.
VINEETO: To come to the understanding and conclusion that the package of instinctual passions and their subsequent emotions is worth investigating and eliminating is truly a big step towards actual freedom. This understanding is breaking with the traditional approach of covering up and balancing out the ‘bad’ feelings of ‘anger, hate, depression’ with a layer of ‘good’ feelings of ‘longing, love, attachment’, often spiced up with a bit of positive thinking that ‘maybe it’s not so bad after all.’
When you follow an emotion back to its origin as it arises and pin it down to an event, a memory, a belief, a fear, a part of your identity and finally the instinctual passion – then you can see it in the bright light of awareness and the emotion will lose its urgency and conviction and is seen for what it is – a bit of the software programming in the brain that can be re-wired and deleted. The next time, when the same emotion arises, it will be less convincing, the connection in the brain will slowly weaken and each time you investigate a particular feeling or belief, it will become weaker until the relevant connection in the brain is broken and replaced by intelligence and common sense. The important thing is not to act on the feeling impulse, to ‘keep your hands in your pocket’ – and I found that this applies for both the ‘bad’ and the ‘good’ emotions. (...)
RESPONDENT: Is it easy for you to differentiate between the feeling of love and dependency and the sensation of fulfillment, freedom and happiness that comes when two people share intimacy?
VINEETO: I like your question. For an actualist, to investigate the good emotions of love, beauty and compassion is as essential as examining the bad emotions of anger, fear, resentment and depression.
In order to investigate the feeling of love and all its accompanying emotions, I had to sharpen my awareness and become persistently alert to detect when love was kicking in. Love is, after all, the most honoured and appreciated of all human emotions, and one is very easily tempted to brush over the nice sweet feeling when it happens.
Investigating and dismantling the good feelings is a real detective adventure game, because, as you mentioned to No 8,
Our identity thrives on feelings, it cannot exist without feelings and emotions – therefore detecting the emotion ‘plastered on any simple sensation’ is to separate out and successively eliminate your very identity – ‘who’ you think and feel yourself to be.
In the beginning, my guiding light was the memory of the pure consciousness experience when there was clearly no emotion happening, as well as the first brief moments of actual intimacy with Peter that occasionally occurred.
In hindsight I can describe love as a bundle of various emotions that arose –
All in all, love produces almost visible psychic tentacles that engulf the other and make him or her a commodity of one’s own desire. After all, love is the expression of the instinctual passions of nurture and desire, packaged nicely into a possessive and exclusive concern for, and focus on, the other. What is usually considered ‘intimacy’ is most often the first honeymoon stage of love. ‘I’ love the other because he/she makes me happy, because ‘I’ feel less lost, lonely and frightened in his/her presence. ‘I’ care for him/her because he/she is the centre and hero / heroine of my dream and the moment ‘my’ hopes, needs, dreams and expectation are not fulfilled, love turns into disappointment, resentment, retreat or even hate.
You see, when one honestly investigates the so-called altruistic feelings of love, there is nothing altruistic about it. Love is utterly selfish and self-centred. Love prevents me from appreciating and meeting the other as a fellow human being because every feeling towards the other, positive or negative, makes me unable to perceive the other as an autonomous human being. Being in love, I create an all-pervasive affective image of the other, consisting of my hopes, needs, fears, dreams and expectations. Only by being an autonomous human being myself can I experience an actual intimacy with my fellow human beings.
This is how I described my first experience of actual intimacy –
The following quote describes how I tackled love at the time and might be useful when you investigate the trap of love. It needs great courage to fly in the face of the highest human values and step out of the seductive feeling of love, again and again. But once you have experienced an actual intimacy, even for a brief moment, you can never be contented with the synthetic substitute of feeling intimate instead of actually being intimate.
KONRAD: In fact, my definition of love is: ‘Not putting anything in the way of what your partner wants’. It is a special case of a more general principle: ‘Every individual is there in the first place for him/herself. Therefore it is wrong to ask anything from anybody, or to take anything for granted.’
VINEETO: I agree with you that this would be a good contract to start a harmonious relationship. In my experience though, the moment love with all its conditioning enters, it destroys this wonderful intention. There is simply no way to forever control, i.e. repress emotions, they do surface quite soon in the course of living together, as you can probably testify from your own experience or the evidence your neighbours seem to give you. With love enters inevitably possessiveness, jealousy, expectation for attention, care, admiration, ‘I scratch your back, you scratch my back’, and in no time freedom and harmony are replaced by compromise, discontentment, misunderstanding, battle and defeat.
KONRAD: My loved one has had many relationships before she met me. None of them lasted long, because all of these men wanted her to be their servant in one or another form. She was even fed up with men, before she met me. She said that the principal thing she appreciates so much about me is that I do not put any claims on her without her consent, and that I do anything to help her to develop herself in the way she wants.
VINEETO: Is she also helping you to develop yourself in the way you want? Or have you already arrived? How can she ever be equal to you if you are her ‘developing aid’? You would always be the superior one. The moment the other starts thinking for him/herself, peace is over.
KONRAD: I have written a booklet about the sexual differences between man and woman, and this little booklet has contributed so much understanding between many men and women, that many relationships were improved by it.
You will probably think that is because I pleaded for male domination of some sort. But the contrary is the case. This book was completely about how relationships could be built on total mutual respect. It was my aim to end all kinds of subtle manipulations, so that honesty can surface, resulting in total equity.
VINEETO: I am interested as to what those sexual differences between man and woman are? Are you talking about physical differences, or those of sensual experience, or differences in the degree of sexual intensity? Difference in the conditioning or factual permanent differences that can supposedly never be eliminated?
In my experience there are simply ‘in-bits’ and ‘out-bits’ in us human beings and they fit perfectly. But I did not find any qualitative difference in the enjoyment or intensity of sexual pleasure. To reach to that understanding and experience though, I had to dig deep into the psyche of female sexual conditioning and completely eradicate it. Repression, fear, guilt, morals, shame, fantasies, power-battle, manipulation as well as my cherished love-dreams are only a few examples of what I had to throw out in order to fully enjoy each of our sexual encounters as fresh as if it was the first time – and so did Peter. As long as there is conditioning of any kind operating there are differences, but once I reach the actual experience of the senses, there is no difference in the pleasure that simple friction can produce.
Even if you should be opposed to everything else I have been saying up to now, I can tell you, it was well worth cleaning myself up, if only for the tango of sexual pleasure that I now enjoy. The depth of sensual experience deepens with every belief thrown out and there are literally no limits to what a wonderful dance man and woman can have together! It far exceeds any imagination or dream I ever had of what was possible.
Should you be interested in what Peter or I have written about our exploration and findings, this is the address: http://www.actualfreedom.com.au/actualism/default.htm and it’s in the chapters ‘Sex’ and ‘A Bit of Vineeto’; who knows, you might find it of interest for you...
VINEETO: You say that now instead of wanting to establish ‘emotional credit’ you feel love for me –
KONRAD: Of course, my love cannot reach you. I see, that my arguments cannot reach you. And what I write to you now, which is the plain truth, cannot reach you either. For you even deny that truth can have any validity. You are completely beyond reach, as far as I know. My love cannot touch you. My reason cannot touch you. And even, in spite of your belief in ‘actual facts’, even the facts I put into my e-mails (for example, that Richard does not know ‘the process’) and that I am not a person who belongs to the ideologies of the Eastern mystic, do not reach you. I am simply confronted with denials with anything that goes against the ‘facts’ as you choose to see them, i.e., your beliefs.
Still, as a fellow human being, It is impossible for me not to love you. And that is why I keep trying, trying, trying, knowing very well that every attempt I undertake will be completely futile. My whole exchange with you is, ‘an exercise in futility’. Still, my love makes me continue, in spite of the fact that I know better.
VINEETO: Love is always the last resort for a spiritualist when the communication has broken down. What good is love going to do? I have long ago found out that love is not the answer to the human condition but part of the problem. Love is only the cover-up for the rotten core that lies underneath – the instinctual passions of fear, aggression, nurture and desire that all humans are bestowed with by default. The method of actualism aims at removing the cause not at providing a gooey band-aid. It is possible to change human nature – you can remove the whole programming and without malice and sorrow love and compassion are also unemployed. Without the bad emotions, the good emotions are of no value whatsoever. And only when you have cleaned your eyes of good and bad emotion can you experience the world as it is and yourself as a marvellously functioning sensate, intelligent and apperceptive human being.
There is much, much more to discover that what J. Krishnamurti and all the Eastern and Western teachers, gurus, philosophers and shamans keep on regurgitating – there is a purity and a perfection to discover that is beyond all human imagination.
All it takes is sincerity, a discontentment with the current non-solutions and a naïve sense of adventure to not settle for second best.
I wish you good-bye, Konrad. I don’t think it makes sense to continue the conversation, because you insist that emotions are vital and you believe in love, whereas I have discovered the actual wondrous world that lies beyond love and it beats Love and Compassion by more than a country mile.
RESPONDENT: There is one point that I don’t get. How is it that the sweet feeling in your chest that sometimes you say arises in you when you are with your husband always vanishes when you realize that it is right there in your chest. In my particular case this sweet feeling continues when the body relaxes into whatever activity it has chosen to do even when I am aware of it. This sweet feeling seems to go away later and then it comes back on its own terms. It feels like we don’t have much choice at all to make it come or go. It may not be clear what I am saying because it is not 100% clear how to express emotions in words.
Please make it clear in simple terms without using the word ‘love’ because the very word is confusing to me and has a tremendous baggage of the past. Thanks! It is great that you have a happy life and feel passion for other people to be happy.
VINEETO: Thank you for your reply and question. I will try to explain as well as I can – I am still very new at this explaining and describing business, but it is good fun.
I understand that you probably refer to ‘love’ when you say ‘sweet feeling’. Yes, that sweet feeling, whenever it occurred, vanished when I realised that it was there ‘in my chest’.
RESPONDENT: This sweet feeling seems to go away later and then it comes back on its own terms. It feels like we don’t have much choice at all to make it come or go.
VINEETO: Those feelings are constantly changing and they are part of the ‘self’. In my peak-experience, and in moments of actual intimacy with Peter, I understood that there is ‘life beyond beliefs, emotions and feelings’. You might remember for yourself one of those periods, when the world is seen crisp, clear, perfect, magical, without emotions or feelings and experienced as utterly safe. The signals of our senses are usually filtered by the ‘self’, the psychological and psychic entity within each of us, resulting in ‘normal’, edited sensate experience. When this filter is temporarily absent, as in the peak experience or some drug-induced states, the sensate experience can be direct and unfiltered. Then the sensate-only experience is extra-ordinary. One has a heightened sensory perception free of any sense of ‘I’ or ‘me’.
These peak-experiences free from the ‘self’, and the resulting understanding that the self mainly consists of emotions and beliefs – any emotions and any beliefs – gave me the courage and the intent to investigate into each of my beliefs and emotions when they occurred. The resulting actual intimacy with Peter and also with everybody I meet is far superior to the sweet, yet unreliable and dreamlike feeling quality I had with people before. The intimacy now is a constant experience of actually meeting the person without any moods or expectations, offence or hope, dependency or separation.
This is how I have described the quality of intimacy:
I hope I have made this point a little bit clearer to you. I was simply tired of all the qualities that affection in a relationship had in its tail: dependency, jealousy, need, expectations, bargain, sorrow, pining and unreliability. I was surprised and delighted to have found another, much more satisfying way to relate intimately to another human being.
RESPONDENT: As I have been reading your posts one thing keeps really bothering me. You said that as you pay attention to it, the ‘sweet feeling’ in your body which one could call ‘love’ always disappears...
This is really bothering me. And then I have found this (about what you guys or Richard wrote in your journal, Q&A No 2):
Well, I call ‘feeling good’ = love! To me, ‘Not feeling good’ is the absence of the delicate, sweet feeling of gooooooddness in your body. Otherwise what is feeling good???? ‘Love’ is naturally when the organism is running perfectly smooth. I guess it is just a matter of definition. It is funny, but some people might argue for love while you might say love is not important, etc – just feeling good every moment is what matters ... while perhaps everybody is talking about the same feeling in the body.
VINEETO: You are really digging into it now. Great journey, isn’t it?
Feeling good = being at ease, the absence of churning emotions, the peace of mind, when the little man in the head and the feelings in the heart are not in control of your body and brain.
Love, on the contrary, is a feeling that there is a presence, a positive emotion to counteract the otherwise prevalent feeling of separation. The self, this psychological and psychic entity inside of us, creates by its very nature a feeling of separation, because having an identity, a self, one has to feel to be someone different and separate to everything and everyone around. This positive emotion will disappear when you become aware of it and trace it to its roots – the sorrow of feeling separate and the fear of being alone.
But when you are simply feeling good or being good, because there is no issue going on in your head and heart you are free to enjoy the delicious sensation of being alive.
RESPONDENT: Osho says: meditation and love go hand in hand. Is it not the same as what you guys have been saying? Meditation defined as aliveness, watchfulness, investigation, paying attention to one’s feelings.
VINEETO: When you are trying to fit what we say into what Osho said you will miss the point entirely. In the last days I have talked to two old girlfriends, both enthusiastically and devotedly on the spiritual path, and I have tried to tell them about my findings and experiences. It was bewildering to see how they both said it was all the same like the spiritual. It leaves me at a loss what words to use. But, I will try again –
Meditation is based on the watcher. You watch your thoughts and feelings in order to rise above them, to dis-identify from them, which in the end amounts to going somewhere else, where you are not the body, not the mind, not the emotion. You are to identify with the watcher and thus move away from the source of your troubles, your body and brain inflicted with the emotions and instincts of the Human Condition. If you persist and identify with the watcher strongly enough, you become the watcher and simply ‘watch’ your body doing its number. Nothing is changed in the Human Condition except ‘you’ become someone other than this flesh and blood body. Then you become the ‘soul’ (the heart), and maybe you even become so deluded as to flip into an altered state of consciousness, aka enlightenment.
Actual Freedom is firmly based on this flesh and blood body with its physical senses as the only actuality there is. Everything that not perceivable by the physical senses is feeling and imagination, deeply ingrained in our genetic heritage and our socially absorbed psyche, but nevertheless imagination and as such non-actual. The aim of the path to actual freedom is to come out of the psychic and psychological structure of the ‘real’ world, the instinctual passions, emotions and beliefs, and step into the actual, sensate and sensual world of the physical universe, where everything is already here, perfect, magical and pure.
In order to come out of the real world one needs to investigate into the ‘hooks’ that keep pulling one back into misery, malice and fear – and investigate and eliminate them whenever they appear. That is done by running the question: ‘How am I experiencing this moment of being alive?’ Then everything that is preventing you from feeling good will be examined and traced to its root.
Usually, when examining an emotion, the first thing I found was a certain concept. By questioning the validity of it and the effects that this idea had in my life, I often recognised that it fitted a general, collective belief-system. Questioning the collective belief proved a bit more scary. But it is only fear that prevented me from acknowledging the belief as belief and the facts as facts. Acknowledging the facts brought me back to here, back to my senses.
For instance, survival fear would blink red lights when I decided to quit working with my former peer-group. Examining the facts revealed that I could easily survive without the income from that particular job. But the instinctual fear blurred my view and made it great detective work to come to a sensible evaluation. I had to see the instinct in its functioning in order to not be driven by it.
RESPONDENT: Love defined as the fragrance = feeling good, whenever the organism is running smoothly, a sign that one is feeling good, indeed. Any comments?
VINEETO: Love, as I said above, is a feeling and an emotion, born out of our instinct to nurture, and with awareness you can see it pouring out of you. It is directed towards someone or everyone and thus indirectly contributing to your sense of identity.
Feeling good, as in absence of feeling bad, is purely being one’s senses and being aware of it all. Without a problem surfacing or an emotion churning one is able to experience life and the world sensately and completely at ease, whatever happens.
I like your question. This spiritual world is such an insidious psychic castle in the clouds, all produced in our heads and hearts. And everybody believes something, everybody wants to keep the ‘good’ emotions like love and then clip a bit of freedom on to it. But that will only be a synthetic freedom, a feeling of freedom, not the genuine actual article.
Peter said it well in his letter to No. 1:
RESPONDENT: AND the fact(!) that his techniques worked. It was love all the way and still is, love still growing.
VINEETO: On my way to an actual freedom I have investigated – first scared and hesitantly, then more and more confidently – the meaning and workings of love. The first thing I found was that love which human beings know and feel is based on bargains and hope or trust for bargains. All relationships are based on that kind of love. If relationship would be a straight contract of bargains without the feelings of love, we would be able to investigate both sides of the contract and agree or disagree. Love, being the antidote to loneliness makes this kind of investigation impossible. It conveys the sense of belonging, and it can be traced back to the instinctual need to group together for survival. So often, great fear and sorrow arises when a loved one is in danger or dies – or breaks the relationship. It is not the broken contract that is bemoaned, it is the return to insecurity and loneliness that is so distressing.
To discover intimacy it was necessary for Peter and me to remove love from our relationship, and it made an actual meeting of the other person possible for the first time, without any emotions, hopes, loves and hates, projections and fears. It has also enabled me to examine the contents of my particular relationships with other people, be it to the master or to the group of his disciples I felt connected to. What kind of bargains, hidden or open, were part of the relating, what fears and contracts were involved? And what were the emotions that would again and again make me blind to otherwise obvious facts?
When I removed the feeling of love – and the belief in the master’s ultimate authority – then my previous conviction that Osho’s techniques had worked for me was no longer valid. I found his methods lacking – lacking success in what I wanted to achieve in my life compared to the effort I had put into using his techniques. I found that, after 17 years, I was neither happy nor harmless, I was neither enlightened nor could I live at ease in the marketplace. I had made myself dependant on the master’s authority and on vague interpretations of what he had said – millions of purposefully contradicting words, which every Sannyasin would interpret in a different way.
To see the facts for what they are I had to examine and eliminate my emotions first – all my emotions, the good ones and the bad ones. The very act of believing, not only the content of the particular beliefs is such an insidious and automatic faculty of the ‘self’ – without believing, the ‘self’ simply withers away. It is made up of belief, of emotion, of instinct.
RESPONDENT: There is a love, Vineeto, which liberates and comes totally alive when you die. Try that one out, too. It doesn’t have anything to do with the other, but with love alone, love as being alive, love as breathing, love as being. You, from your space of clarity, must see that we talk about two absolutely different types of love.
VINEETO: You must be talking about Divine Love or Love Agapé. Yes, I tried that out. Especially ‘love as one’s being’ is very compelling – such a nice sweet and powerful identity it provides, I was almost tempted to remain in that state. But out of a compelling pure consciousness experience I had my aim set on discovering an actual freedom and an actual world without emotions and beliefs. I had experienced it since then often enough to know its utter purity and perfection. I had my eyes set on a freedom from any kind of identity, be it ‘normal’ or divine. The purity and magnificence of the actual world leaves Divine Love far, far behind.
As I wrote to No 12 that in terms of relating, both human love and divine love operate on the principle of ‘feeling’. Both are affections that are addressed and directed towards someone (human love) or All (Divine Love). Love to be maintained is dependant on people ‘needing’ and ‘wanting’ love. Therefore it is not actual.
RESPONDENT: Sure you became disappointed, because you wanted so much from the man (Osho). Every child gets pissed off at their parents when they don’t get what they want.
VINEETO: I was a Sannyasin for peace of mind and for peace on earth, that’s what I understood enlightenment and the promised New Man to be. If you say that I wanted too much, I am interested to hear what is your goal that you want to achieve through Osho’s teaching and methods.
VINEETO: I like what you wrote on love. It makes things more clear with this multi-facetted word.
Just a few comments:
RESPONDENT: Does your heart ache and break when they’re sad? Then it’s LOVE!
Do you cry for their pain, even when they’re strong? Then it’s LOVE!
VINEETO: This definition of love makes it very clear that love is just another word for ‘suffering together’. It is pretty obvious, this is what love is, but I cannot see anything attractive in it, nothing that would add any solution to the problems in the world.
RESPONDENT: Do their eyes see your true heart, and touch your soul so deeply it hurts? Then it’s LOVE!
But do you stay because a blinding, incomprehensible mix of pain and elation pulls you close and holds you? Then it’s LOVE!
VINEETO: Here are two more definitions of love, where love is associated with pain. Yes, that’s what it is, love is only possible – and needed – if there is also pain and suffering. Otherwise, why one would need love, why not just share a good time and enjoy each other’s company?
RESPONDENT: Do you pardon their faults because you care about them? Then it’s not only LOVE, its also FRIENDSHIP!!
VINEETO: Well, on this one I don’t agree, I think it is called ‘a lousy bargain’: I accept your faults, you accept mine. And you can never pardon someone’s faults forever, all love has its limits, when those friends get on your nerves. The agreement to ‘forget and forgive’ is never possible to uphold, because our emotional memory is very very lasting.
Much better to sort out why other people’s ‘faults’ should get on my nerves, find the reason in me and eliminate the cause. Then I don’t need love because I am not offended by ‘faults’ in others.
RESPONDENT: Do you accept their faults because they’re a part of who they are? Then it’s LOVE!
VINEETO: What a lousy gift, first to see ‘faults’ in others and then to re-affirm someone in their faults by acceptance.
And why not change yourself so you won’t be harassed by other’s ‘faults’, and then you don’t have to change them? Then you don’t have to love them for their ‘faults’ either. You can have intimacy with others as they are, unconcerned about their ‘faults’, which is, after all, only their particular expression of the Human Condition which is inherent in all of us.
RESPONDENT: ‘You’ve got to dance like nobody’s watching, and love like it’s never going to hurt’.
VINEETO: Yes, I too remember when I was dancing ‘like nobody’s watching’, and probably nobody was watching anyway. It was simply good fun.
But ‘love like it’s never going to hurt’ implies that it is going to hurt and you know it, you just pretend it won’t – for a while. The backside of love is hurt, as you said in your statements above, it is a double-sided coin. Pretending or imagining that it is otherwise won’t change the fact.
Why is it that the idea and the feeling of love are so important, and yet everybody has been hurt through love?
I know why it was important for me – ‘love’ was, besides ‘truth’, the highest value that I believed in. But then, when I found out about being here, in the actual world, free of feelings and emotions, without love or hate, I can now be with a person and give my 100% attention, complete care and consideration, freely without bonds, expectation or bargain. I have experienced this alternative as vastly superior and more enjoyable than love, that I never wanted love back.
Intimacy between two human beings without feelings and dreams is more than I ever could have imagined. But this intimacy is only possible when one can give oneself 100% into the adventure, boots and all. Past hurts and disappointments sit too ingrained in the emotional memory, either repressed or open, and cause the usual holding back and demonstrative ‘independence’. Only by questioning the concept of love itself and then eliminating the love-related emotions was I able to give this experiment with Peter my 100% and break through to actual intimacy. This intimacy lies beyond all hurts and caution. It has no strings attached whatsoever.
Usually we simply project dreams, hopes, fears and concepts of male-female role-play on to the other person, thus using him/her unconsciously as a mere projection screen. Removing this screen by abandoning and eliminating those emotions, feelings and concepts, one can meet the other as the human being he/she is, in perfect intimacy.
RESPONDENT to No 14: Just because these two, Vineeto and Peter, have awakened you to something ‘you’ could not see in the way Osho did his awakening, does not mean they have come any further than anybody else!
These people appear to be total mind fuckers, I may be wrong but I don’t think so. They are just in the process of exchanging one type of mind for another. This new mind is just a little more supple and sly, it appears to be a very nice mind, kind and patient and in love with its own sweetness! The taste of no mind has a different taste, like the ocean it is always salty, remind you of anything?
VINEETO: Maybe this is how it appears to you, that Peter and I are total mind-fuckers, because that’s how you define the opposite of Universal Love. But Universal Love is as much part of the problem as the ego.
To be the universe experiencing itself as a sensate and reflective human being is such a delight and perfection, that it leaves Universal Love far, far behind. The freedom and simplicity of simply doing what is happening, the intimacy of meeting other human beings without the burden of any identity – both ego and soul – is deliciously fulfilling. No love (human or divine) can offer anything of that quality.
So, even if it looks so from your side, it is not mind-fucking. The word ‘mind’ is too hackneyed by the spiritual people and thus too confusing to be of any use. I prefer the words common sense, practical intelligence, clarity and reflection.
VINEETO: Why is it that the idea and the feeling of love are so important, and yet everybody has been hurt through love?
RESPONDENT: One is only hurt through love if one has expectations about another’s behaviour, if some sort of bargain has been struck about how love looks, or feels or is supposed to appear.
VINEETO: Yes, that’s right. The trouble is to find the different paragraphs of the ‘contracts’ and dismantle them, so the relating can stay free of dreams and hidden expectations. I had to question and eliminate the feeling of love for the other all together in order to experience the exquisite intimacy of meeting a fellow human being afresh each moment again.
RESPONDENT: I’ve been enriched by unconditional love, and hurt by love when I had false ideas and beliefs about it.
VINEETO: I found that every idea about love was a false idea and every belief by its nature is a ‘false’ belief. Belief, after all, means ‘to fervently wish to be true’ – as per dictionary.
As for unconditional love, it is nothing but a grand feeling. I have known moments and days of unconditional love-for-all, wanting to give Wisdom and compassion to everyone. But, compared with my peak-experiences, where the ‘I’ was absent altogether and with it any sense of ‘self’, any feeling, emotion or belief, I found that ‘Love’ has three main disadvantages:
Richard describes the difference in his journal – and that’s how I experience it, too:
So much better, not to have malice and fear, that makes love, any kind of love, simply redundant. One can be benign, friendly and benevolent, literally meaning well-wishing, and is free to act in a way that is of benefit to one and all. Benevolence acts freely, one is not driven by Universal Sorrow as are the Compassionate Ones.
RESPONDENT: Also, the word or feeling of fear cannot be used in conjunction with love because fear is actually the antithesis of love ... Therefore if I feel fear, I cannot be in a state of love – One negates the other!
VINEETO: Yes, I agree. Love is used as the antidote to fear. With sufficient love one feels no fear. I experienced fear being transformed from the tension in the stomach into a feeling of relief and warmth and then a heat rising into the heart area until it filled my whole chest, providing me with this new identity – the ‘one who feels love continuously’. Although it was a very seductive experience, I could not forget the intimacy I had during my peak-experiences. Intimacy was impossible in this state of Love. My relating then was tinted by this ‘filled to the top’-being that needed to pour her ‘wisdom’ and love into someone, embracing all of humanity in a mad state of pitying compassion. Fortunately my common sense and my intent for a pure and actual freedom helped me to overcome this delusive calenture.
As humans, we are born with the instinct to survive, consisting of fear, aggression, nurture and desire. It takes deep investigation and courage to dismantle fear and its remedy ‘love’ for what it is – the instinct of the ‘self’ to survive. So, you see, out of my peak-experience my approach has been to eliminate this instinctual fear whenever it surfaced, thus digging deeper and deeper into the labyrinth of ‘self’ and ‘being’, eventually eradicating the very reasons for fear. Every time fear is recognized it loses its grip over me, becoming weaker and weaker, dissolving like a fog, leaving me unrestricted and free to experience life again as the crisp, clear, delicious and intimate adventure that it actually is. And with fear gone, who needs the ‘self’-enhancing feeling of love or Divine Love, which is yet another feeling preventing actual intimacy from happening.
Now I can give everyone I meet, and spend time with, my 100% undivided attention, being here with them for as long as the meeting lasts. There is neither an expectation nor an investment, neither a need to ‘give’ nor to ‘receive’, but simply the joy in meeting another human being. No love or Love can offer such freedom and delight. (...)
RESPONDENT No 18: But such a glance is precisely my salvation, that is, if it is followed by acceptance, if it is followed by love. It is the only thing that can liberate me from my self-built prison walls.
VINEETO: Well, I would say, from my experience and from common sense, that love is not going to liberating. It only makes one more dependant of others and confused as to what you are or want to do.
RESPONDENT: I think maybe the interpretation you are using for ‘love’ is the somewhat limiting and most often attributed meaning of the word. Yet – if you consider that love in its purest sense refers to ‘unconditional love’ – therefore it is really a state of mind and perception which is totally independent of others – then love is really an answer. I am not dependent of others to have an attitude of love – it is irrelevant if it is reciprocated and it does not need an object to be its recipient. It is not applicable to someone or something and not to others – therefore in its purest sense, Love is totally liberating...
VINEETO: I am delighted to receive such a sincere and interested response for my letter to No 18.
Yes, you are right, in this response to her poem I used the word ‘love’ in the usual context of love between two or more people, born out of need and dependency, creating yet more suffering with its inevitable attributes of frustration, resentment, jealousy, possessiveness, disappointment and compromising. For definition’s sake I would like to call it ‘love’ with small ‘l’.
The love you describe, seemingly out of experience, I would call Divine Love or ‘Love’ with capital ‘L’. This Love has been praised since millennia in East and West as the highest and single solution to all human problems but it has one major flaw – it does not work. It has failed to transform humanity into a peaceful society, into harmonious families, into friendly countries. And nobody has ever considered that Love is not the solution, but part of the problem.
When I ask myself, ‘How am I in relation to other people?’, then this problem becomes obvious. In love, there is a recipient. You wrote:
RESPONDENT: ... and it does not need an object to be its recipient.
VINEETO: I don’t agree with you. When there is no recipient, there is no love and there is no lover. To be filled with Divine Love is a great experience and one that sets one apart from, and above, ordinary human beings who experience love as a need. With Divine Love there is no equity possible between two human beings – the Master needs disciples to be a Master, and the one experiencing Love needs people appreciating his Love. It cannot be experienced without the recipient.
When for the first time I broke through the veil of beliefs and emotions and experienced the world in its magical and magnificent actuality, I also saw the man I am living with for the first time as he is – an ordinary, actual, deliciously alive human being. The intimacy of this recognition hit me like a jackhammer. I realised that in ‘normal’ life I was walking around in a cloud of self-perpetuating emotions and imaginations, and within this cloud it is impossible to meet another human being in equity and unrestricted intimacy. After my peak-experience, where I saw the world as perfect as it is and the other without emotional bonds, investments and self-reference, I was intrigued and obsessed – I wanted this kind of relating and perfection 24 hours a day. A delightful free interaction with another human being is so fulfilling, so delicious, so innocent and free that it leaves both love and Love for dead.
RESPONDENT: In your answer to No 13 and me on this subject, I perceive again semantical confusion. You talk about delight, but not joy. You talk about in-love as if were heart. You discuss intimacy without compassion. I like to teach, as I believe you do also, so allow me to point out that there is a distinct difference between love from the heart and being in love.
VINEETO: Maybe you need to tell me then, what the difference is for you between love from the heart and being in love? The only love I have known has been feelings in the heart. Is there another kind?
Further, I never talked about me being in love. Neither intimacy nor sensual sexuality have anything to do with love, be it ‘from the heart’ or ‘in love’. Actual intimacy is meeting the other without any preconceived ideas or feelings in the way, able to respond to the actual alive human being in front of me, here, now, fresh each moment, again and again. Love is just a pure substitute for actual intimacy, it is nothing but passionate imagination.
RESPONDENT: I see that you have done a lot of internal searching on the insanity of falling-in-love, or being-in-love. I totally concur about going beyond this madness. But despite your objections about love, delight and joy of being alive is heart, is love, my dear. Pure love. I have perceived your care, which with pure love is compassion by the way, in most of your posts.
VINEETO: You say you have had many awakenings. Did it ever occur to you that there is more awakening possible – maybe even awakening from the spiritual, compassionate dream?
... when the bubble of beliefs bursts and you experience the actual world for the first time with clean eyes, unrestricted by emotions, beliefs or instincts... I have described that bubble bursting:
RESPONDENT: ...‘your care, which with pure love is compassion by the way’ ...
VINEETO: Compassion is a passion which binds the one who ‘needs’ compassion. The deal was that Osho gave his Compassion and I gave my devotion, which brought me to a point where I was even ready to die for him. At the height of the war against the fundamental Christians in Oregon, when rumours went around on the Ranch that the National Guards were on alarm and could attack any day, we were ready to lie down on the streets, have the tanks roll over us and be killed for love and protection for the Master. Can’t you see the power in it? Pure love is only an ideal, it is not pure at all. It is always a bargain.
Care, consideration and benevolence are not a relationship, they are not even a state of ‘being’. They are simply intrinsic to the human body, once the alien entity has been extinguished. They have no strings attached. I simply ‘wish you well’ in describing what I found out. What you do with it is completely your business.
RESPONDENT: Also, you, sensing this benevolence, after eliminating all emotions, feelings and instincts, are living in a paradise and you would want others to experience the same. But it isn’t love or compassion, you say, oh beware me no, but benevolence.
VINEETO: No, it is neither love nor compassion, for love and compassion are passions (com-passion), they stem from the feeling of separation and loneliness. Without bad feelings there is no need for good feelings to compensate – no malice, no love – no sorrow, no compassion. Compassion is sharing sorrow with other human beings, it keeps everyone trapped in the idea that this earth is a terrible place to live.
And it is simply common sense. Why should I not want everybody to share the same paradise? Why not have peace on earth, for everybody? We are fellow human beings. Anybody, who wants to, can do the same thing that I did and live in the same benevolent paradise that I live in. Doesn’t that make sense?
RESPONDENT: Isn’t this inventing of new terms a playing with words only to separate yourself from other similar sounding statements made by, say, sannyasins? To emphasise that they are 180 degrees wrong and you are right?
VINEETO: Well, it you who insists that both should be the same thing. I am not inventing new terms for the same thing, I am using words to describe a different thing. When airplanes were invented, they weren’t called ‘cars’. Two different words for two different things. Love and compassion are feelings within the Human Condition, they are a well-meaning but futile attempt by the psychic entity to mimic the actual intimacy and benevolence which become apparent when ‘I’ disappear. Why shouldn’t it be possible that there is something new under the sun, something that actually works?
Vineeto’s & Richard’s Text ©The Actual Freedom Trust: 1997-. All Rights Reserved.