On The Actual Freedom Mailing List
ALAN: Congratulations, Richard, on setting up the new mailing list. I look forward to lively future discussions. To start the ball rolling, I can think of nothing better than to copy my notes, for the last week, of exploring what life is about.
RICHARD: Welcome to The Actual Freedom Mailing List, Alan. I am glad that you have joined for I am sure that the sincerity of your participation will bestow immense benefit to both yourself and anyone else who is genuinely concerned about becoming free of the Human Condition and thus effecting peace-on-earth. We who are discussing these matters have before us a vital opportunity to partake in precipitating humankind’s long-awaited emergence from animosity and anguish into benignity and benevolence.
We fellow human beings writing here today are actively engaged in ensuring that these ‘Savage Ages’ will eventually become a thing of the dreadful past ... so that they will pass into the waste-bin of history like the ‘Dark Ages’ have.
It is not a little thing we are doing.
ALAN: The apparent end of the process is the realisation that all that was occurring was a process and completely meaningless – just part of ‘my’ antics.
RICHARD: The contents of the process are meaningless, yes, but the process itself is essential for the ending of ‘me’. ‘I’ do not do the deed itself for an ‘I’ cannot end itself. What ‘I’ can do to bring about this ‘death’ is that ‘I’ deliberately and consciously – and with knowledge aforethought – set in motion a ‘process’ that will ensure ‘my’ demise. What ‘I’ do, voluntarily and intentionally, is to press the button which precipitates a momentum – oft-times alarming but always thrilling – that will result in ‘my’ inevitable self-immolation. What one does is that one dedicates oneself to the challenge of being here as the universe’s experience of itself. When ‘I’ freely and cheerfully sacrifice ‘myself’ – the psychological and psychic entities residing inside this body – ‘I’ am gladly making ‘my’ most supreme donation, for ‘I’ am what ‘I’ hold most dear. It is a welcome release into actuality. Then I am finally here ... now. I discover that I have always been here now ... I have never been anywhere else for there is nowhere else ... except in illusion and into delusion. The ‘real world’ and the ‘Greater Reality’ had their existence only in ‘my’ fertile imagination. Only this, the actual world, genuinely exists. This exquisite surprise brings with it ecstatic relief at the moment of mutation ... life is perfect after all. But, then again, has one not suspected this to be so all along? At the moment of freedom from the Human Condition there is a clear sense of ‘I have always known this’. Doubt is banished forever ... no more verification is required. All is self-evidently pure and perfect. Everything is indeed well.
It is the greatest gift one can bestow upon oneself and others.
ALAN: ‘I’ cannot accept that ‘I’ will never know the answer.
RICHARD: You will find, as the process proceeds, that ‘I’ will come to accept that ‘I’ can never know the answer – and gladly – when ‘I’ realise that ‘my’ psychological and psychic self-immolation is the best contribution that ‘I’ can make for peace-on-earth. ‘I’ have an in-built tendency for self-sacrifice – human history bears this out in silly physical self-sacrifice – so ‘my’ ending of ‘myself’ it is what ‘I’ am well-equipped to do ... it is what ‘I’ am good at doing. Literally millions of peoples throughout history, mistakenly identifying with ‘I’, have readily sacrificed the physical body for whatever ‘good cause’ that they have been brainwashed into believing. As I wrote in Article 17 of ‘Richard’s Journal’: ‘It is possible to not only seek but to find ... thereby enabling one to live life in full meaning twenty-four-hours-a-day. The universe is innately perfect and pure. It is already always immaculate and consummate. Nothing ‘dirty’ can breach the blameless bastions of this unimpeachable purity and perfection ... even the most profound thoughts and the most sublime feelings are self-centred. The self – ‘I’ – is not only defiled, it is corrupt through and through. ‘I’ am perversity itself. No matter how earnestly one tries to purify oneself, one can never succeed completely. The last little bit always eludes perfecting. ‘I’ am rotten at the very core. There is one thing that ‘I’ can do, however, to remedy the situation. ‘I’ can disappear. Psychological and psychic self-immolation is the only sensible sacrifice that ‘I’ can make in order to reveal perfection. Life is bursting with meaning when ‘I’ am no longer present to mess things up. ‘I’ stand in the way of that purity being apparent. ‘My’ presence prohibits perfection being evident. ‘I’ prevent the very meaning to life, which ‘I’ am searching for, from coming into plain view. The main trouble is that ‘I’ wish to remain in existence to savour the meaning’.
And again, in Article 15: ‘‘I’ will never find the ultimate fulfilment for ‘I’ am standing in the way of the ‘Mystery of Life’ being revealed. There is no way out, ‘I’ am doomed. ‘I’ must, inevitably, cease to ‘be’. Instead of bemoaning ‘my’ fate and vainly searching for an escape, ‘I’ can see ‘myself’ for what ‘I’ am. This seeing is the beginning of the ending of ‘me’. The extinction of ‘me’ is the ultimate sacrifice ‘I’ can make to ensure the possibility of peace-on-earth for not only me but for all humankind. Thus, I find myself here, in the world as-it-is. A vast stillness lies all around, abounding with purity. Beneficence, an active kindness, overflows in all directions, imbuing everything with unimaginable fairytale-like quality. For me to be able to be here now at all was a blessing that only ‘I’ could grant, because nobody else could do it for me. I am full of admiration for the ‘me’ that dared to do such a thing. I owe all that I experience now to ‘me’. I salute ‘my’ audacity. And what an adventure it was ... and still is’.
These are the wondrous workings of the exquisite quality of life.
ALAN: Whatever ‘process’ (if it was a process) started last night has continued today and intensified on my walk with the dog this morning. Strange sensations, mainly ‘pressure’ in the head and all the time the question ‘is this an actual process or something ‘I’ am making up’. The realisation that everything which occurs is just something ‘I’ am making up and, though real, it is not actual. At one stage, when very intense, I pick up a stone and clutch it desperately for the knowledge that the stone actually exists. The pain in my hand, when I clutch the stone tightly is an actual pain. Everything else is an illusion. All I have lived for 46 years is an illusion. ‘I’ desperately want a reply from Richard and now I know the reason why – to verify whether the process is actually happening.
RICHARD: Aye ... it sure sounds like the genuine article to me. From your description it would appear that this is indeed the same-same kind of process that went on in me when I had an ‘I’ lurking around within this body ... and being able to recognise a similarity is the only type of ‘verification’ worth anything I can give. A ‘pressure in the head’ I can relate to ... with me it was most intense at the base of the brain (at the top of the brain-stem) but it permeated throughout the head. It could last anywhere from five minutes to two-three hours, and sometimes would move down to the small of my back (between the shoulder blades) as it diminished prior to finishing. I would then get a convulsive jerking of the left leg for up to half an hour, then all would be over ... for that time round. At the time I took heed of the fact that these symptoms are well known among mystics and are called ‘Kriyas’ by the Indians (who have been doing this kind of thing for centuries), as I had nothing else to go by to explain these bizarre happenings.
The stone actually exists ... and the physical pain you get by ‘clutching it desperately’ is actual (the ‘desperately’ part is real, not actual ... but I understand the desperation that is engendered when reality – your entire world-view – breaks down). Rest assured that the flesh and blood fellow human being called Richard that is writing these words is also actual. It is a weird thing to go through ... but then again, war and rape and murder and torture and domestic violence and child abuse and sadness and loneliness and grief and depression and suicide are equally bizarre. The Human Condition is weird, so any dissolution of it is correspondingly weird. Also, your pride can begin to take a hammering, so watch out for the tendency to becoming humble to ameliorate your condition whilst you go through this process ... else you may become enlightened.
You will not have an ounce of pride – or humility – left in you by the time it is all over.
RICHARD: A ‘pressure in the head’ I can relate to ... with me it was most intense at the base of the brain (at the top of the brain-stem) but it permeated throughout the head. It could last anywhere from five minutes to two-three hours, and sometimes would move down to the small of my back (between the shoulder blades) as it diminished prior to finishing. I would then get a convulsive jerking of the left leg for up to half an hour, then all would be over ... for that time round.
ALAN: Yes, definitely most intense at the base of the brain and permeating through the whole head. When I first started to experience this I put it down to a sort of ‘stress’ symptom, caused by questioning ‘my’ existence. I am well acquainted with stress symptoms and, on closer examination the current experience is almost exactly the opposite. I experienced ‘stress’ as a metal headband, gradually getting tighter and tighter. The current experience is of a pressure from within – an exploding, rather than imploding. It seems to almost invariably commence when contemplating ‘this moment of being alive’ or ‘how can I possibly be here’ or ‘I am this universe experiencing itself as a sensate human being’ or similar and lasts, as you say, from minutes to hours.
RICHARD: Is it not incredible that all this can be triggered off by thinking certain thoughts ... contemplation is indeed a tremendous tool to enable such a breakthrough repeatedly. It also serves to answer your previous questions about what is real and what is the result of ‘I’ trying ... this is the very brain cells re-arranging their network by the only means possible: Thought. It is such a shame that the spiritual aspirant is urged to condemn thought and thus allow the feelings to take over. Feelings are so notorious for being unreliable as a means of ascertaining the correct course of action that I am staggered that they be revered so.
It is pertinent to your question inasmuch as the configuration of one’s physical neurones and synapses are formed by the instincts one was born with and the societal conditioning super-imposed over the top of same. Whether it be ‘imploding’ or ‘exploding’, I always experienced the re-configuration as one repairing an engine ... with the vital exception that one had one’s hands in one’s pockets all the while. Of course ‘I’ can re-arrange the brain cells to accord to the facts ... it is the easiest thing in the world once ‘I’ get the knack of so doing.
It does eventually lead to the end of ‘me’, however.
ALAN: It is by no means debilitating (yet at any rate) and I seem to have little physical after-effects – except on Tuesday when, after reading your mail I had numbness and tingling in the right leg – amazing what ‘I’ can achieve, is it not!
RICHARD: Oh yes ... if that is a symptom ‘I’ am supposed to have then ‘I’ will darned well have it! With hindsight it is all a laugh ... ‘I’ was doing it to ‘myself’ all along.
RICHARD: Also, your pride can begin to take a hammering.
ALAN: Well, not yet – there was a definite sense of pride when reading your messages. Which only goes to illustrate how absurd it all is – ‘I’ am proud of doing well in succeeding in ‘my’ demise!!!
RICHARD: That is okay ... one makes use of whatever tools one has to hand. If pride is there then make full use of it instead of suppressing it. Human beings are so good at telling themselves off for failing that patting oneself on the back for achieving something is healthy. So what if ‘I’ am proud of doing well ... it can only hasten ‘my’ inevitable end. ‘I’ might as well go out in a blaze of glory ... after all, it is a once in a life-time experience.
And what an experience it is!
ALAN: No idea [who else is on the list] other than those who have posted recently – and that does not include Richard – maybe he has unsubscribed from his own list?
RICHARD: I can easily take hint as broad as this, Alan ... perhaps we can further our discussion on the difference between a pure consciousness experience and an altered state of consciousness? Thus far we had looked at the change in description in your own written experience of some time ago – as posted on your Web page – wherein the PCE (‘no worries about the past, no worries about the future ... it is seeing the absolute perfection of the universe’ ) devolved into an ASC (‘it is feeling an overwhelming LOVE, or rather, BEING an overwhelming LOVE ... each time you breath in feel the Life Force rushing in ... when you breathe out – send it back to Him’ ). Vis.:
In order for a PCE to happen one’s identity (‘I’ as ego and ‘me’ as soul) go into abeyance and perception becomes apperception (which is the mind’s awareness of itself being conscious as distinct from ‘I’ being aware of ‘me’ being conscious). Apperception is an unmediated awareness ... a pure and clean consciousness unpolluted and uncorrupted by any identity whatsoever. However, it is very common for the feeling of ‘being’ (identity as ‘me’ as soul) to re-establish itself whilst the sense of ‘doing’ (identity as ‘I’ as ego) permits an interregnum. This is where the PCE devolves into an ASC. This happened to me in 1980 (as described in the second paragraph of ‘Appendix One’ in my ‘A Brief personal History’) and – Lo! and Behold! – a year later I was to become enlightened for the next eleven years. It is the instinctual feelings coming rushing in to take over the experience that does the damage ... and self-aggrandisement reigns supreme. I have located some written descriptions to illustrate just how common this is. Vis.:
The ASC is epitomised by a feeling of Oneness ... human love becomes Divine Love – what I call Love Agapé‚ – wherein love ceases being a feeling and becomes a state of being ... ‘Pure Being’. This feeling of Union with The Divine – Unitary Awareness – is an Oceanic experience that assures immortality ... and is thus selfishness to its very core. Peace-on-earth is readily sacrificed for residing in this Deathless State. The means of attaining this is exemplified in the following quotes.
Now to clarify what is meant by ‘to be in god’ the following throws some light ... ‘Brahma’ is the Hindu word for ‘God’ and ‘Brahman’ is the Hindu word for the ‘Supreme’ or the ‘Absolute’. This is what Mr. Stanislav Grof referred to with the term ‘Cosmic Creator’ ... it being deemed impersonal.
The give-away is in the words ‘whatever you can feel, you become’ . Thus the ‘I am Brahma’ (‘I am God’) is a feeling and not a fact. This is evidenced in the next quotes.
The essence of his ‘Teachings’ is that you are to love god. Now, where is this god? One can find out – in his words – who he is. Vis.:
We know already that he uses the word ‘life’ to mean ‘god’, so what he is clearly saying is: ‘I am everything, since I am god’. He drives this point home. Vis.:
From all this one can easily see that Mr. Jiddu Krishnamurti basically said: ‘I am life ... life is god ... I am god made manifest’ ... because he did say ‘I am everything, since I am life (god)’. To drive the point home he says: ‘Truth, the real God – the real God, not the God that man has made’. Therefore, ‘life’, ‘god’ and ‘truth’ are one and the same thing. Mr. Jiddu Krishnamurti basically said: ‘I am god made manifest ... god is truth ... I am truth’. And because he urges his listeners to ‘drink the pure water which I have’ – and it is a water that ‘purifies and heals wonderfully’ – then some considerable light is thrown on his oft-repeated statement about not being a teacher. Because he says: ‘The real thing (‘life’, ‘god’ and ‘truth’) wants a total, complete human being whose heart is full, rich, clear, capable of intense feeling, capable of seeing the beauty’. Love, for him, is an ‘intense feeling’ – which is clearly affective – in the ‘full, rich, clear heart’. By being in his presence and experiencing his love (god’s love) then whatever ails you will be cured ... especially if you know how to ‘listen’.
So, what does he mean by ‘listening’ ? Two years before his death, when asked to reflect upon the importance of his own life, he replied: ‘Does it matter if the world says of K, ‘What a wonderful person he is. ... Who cares? ... The vase contains water; you have to drink the water, not worship the vase. Humanity worships the vase, forgets the water’. He said: ‘The speaker doesn’t have anything he could teach you ... The speaker is only a mirror where you can see yourself. Then, when you recognise yourself clearly, you can put aside the mirror’.
So, ‘listen’ to him does not mean listen with your ears ... it means ‘drink me’ (just like in the Christian’s Holy scriptures). Mr. Jiddu Krishnamurti basically said: ‘Listen to me (drink me in) ... just for two minutes, drink me and recognise yourself as being me: I am life. Love life. Life is truth. Love truth. Truth is God. Love God. I am God made manifest’. And if ‘god’ and ‘life’ and ‘truth’ and ‘love’ all being synonymous for him is not enough evidence, he goes on to elaborate on this theme and includes ‘reality’ and ‘bliss’ and ‘beauty’ into what constitutes ‘god’. Vis.:
He was an enlightened man living in a state of wholeness ... a state of Oneness and Union. Which means there was no longer a separation betwixt him and what he variously called ‘the other’, ‘the absolute’, ‘the supreme’, ‘that which is eternal, timeless and nameless’, ‘that which is sacred, holy’ and so on. For him, intelligence is affective, not cognitive. Vis.:
He makes it quite clear that intelligence does not arise from thought.
He drives this point home consistently.
And he describes how to access this intelligence.
It is all so familiar ... Gurus and God-men have been saying and doing and being and urging this religious or spiritual or mystical or metaphysical solution for millennia. All the Masters and Messiahs; all the Saints and the Sages; all the Saviours and the Avatars have failed to bring about their much-touted Peace On Earth. Mr. Mohan ‘Rajneesh’ Jain and Mr. Jiddu Krishnamurti were simply the latest in a long line of failures.
It would appear that Mr. Stanislav Grof hasn’t started to fail, yet.
ALAN: You consider that the PCE devolves into the ASC when ‘me’ re-establishes itself as ‘Being’, thus leading to Divine Love and Compassion.
RICHARD: Yes, and one of the contributing factors is gratitude – instead of appreciation – with which comes ‘beholden’, ‘indebted’ and ‘obliged’. First there is relief – for no longer being deprived – and the ensuing thankfulness re-establishes ‘me’ at the core of ‘being’ ... a humble ‘me’. It has all to do with ‘not deserving’ such splendour and this uncalled-for perfection – which is, of course, one’s birthright – is felt to be a gratuity bestowed upon one who is specially chosen. As humility is but pride standing upon its head ... away races self-importance and one eventually realises that one is really the ‘Self’. It is all self-aggrandisement; a vainglorious deification of one’s inadequate earthly state of ‘being’. All of a sudden one is someone special and people will finally pay homage to one’s true worth ... for which one has long yearned due recognition. After all, one has been incessantly mortified and forced to be unassuming – ‘don’t get uppity’ or ‘who do you think you are?’ or ‘know your place in life’ – and one has always secretly felt in one’s heart of hearts that one is foreordained for greatness. Narcissism reigns supreme!
ALAN: From memory (and my own description, which you posted), I certainly radiated this love and compassion and felt (took on) all the pain of humanity at large. What I had no sense of was that this was ‘me’ re-establishing ‘myself’, but perhaps this is unavoidable, if you are correct, as there is no way for ‘me’ to see ‘myself’ ‘being’ – such can only be ‘seen’ (or, rather, realised) in a PCE.
RICHARD: Such is the Glamour and Glory and Glitz – plus being ‘chosen’ – there is no way ‘me’ wishes to see ‘myself’ as ‘being’ ... one is ‘Pure Being’. Speaking personally, I did see this but I chose to ignore it or overlook it ... as I wrote in ‘Appendix One’:
ALAN: Certainly in my recent PCE’s I have had no sense of Divine Love and Compassion ‘coming rushing in’ (though their seductive nature has been obvious on occasion), but whether this was because of ‘me’ not being, or not, I am not sure. There is obviously a difference in degree of an ASC – as you know, my suggestion is that it is dependant on one’s ‘terms of reference’ at the time – as is demonstrated by the accounts you sent and others I have read. Franklin Jones being one of the current more extreme examples.
RICHARD: Yes, the ‘terms of reference’ are of utmost importance ... which is why I write so profusely about this matter. I would wish no one to have to travel the route I travelled ... there was too much anguish and angst. Plus there is no need once the allure of the almighty is exposed as being nothing but the introversion it is.
ALAN: I was about to write ‘When I was feeling Divine Love and Compassion, I had no sense of being ‘God’ personified’. This caused me to give this statement careful consideration and, on reflection, I was indeed God personified, though not to the extreme evinced by Franklin Jones, Jesus, Buddha etc. Perhaps, had I remained in that condition, I too would have reached the same extremes. Do you consider such extreme conditions to be an inevitable result?
RICHARD: Once again this is dependent upon the cultural ‘terms of reference’. The Western Mystical tradition does not allow for this extreme (as exemplified by Mr. Francis of Assisi) ... and some Eastern mysticism also (as evidenced by Mr. Abhay Charan De of ‘Hare Krishna’ fame) wherein one remains a ‘Servant of God’. Mostly, however, the Eastern mystical ‘terms of reference’ allow for full realisation of one’s Divine identity.
ALAN: It would be interesting to read a description of an ASC by someone subjected to neither Eastern spiritualism nor Western religion. Do you know of any?
RICHARD: The nearest example that springs to mind is Ms. Suzanne Segal (‘Collisions With The Infinite’) who, despite a background of association with Mr. Maharishi Yogi, describes her years of attempting to come to an understanding of her state via Western psychiatry and psychology. She eventually succumbed to Eastern mysticism and realised her divinity with the aid of people like Mr. Andrew Cohen. It is an interesting read, though. But there is no one that I know of that has no mystical background ... and I have scoured hundreds and hundreds of books during the last eighteen years. This is all very new in human history.
ALAN: The next question to be answered is whether the ASC is a worthwhile goal to pursue. The ASC surely beats the shit out of being ‘normal’ and I certainly felt happy and harmless, to use your expression.
RICHARD: Hmm ... ‘felt’ happy and harmless is the operative word here! There is nothing harmless about divinity ... this is a very selfish and self-centred approach to life on earth ... something that all metaphysical peoples are guilty of. The quest to secure one’s Immortality is unambiguously selfish ... peace-on-earth is readily sacrificed for the supposed continuation of the imagined soul after physical death. So much for their humanitarian ideals of peace, goodness, altruism, philanthropy and humaneness. All Religious and Spiritual and Mystical Quests amount to nothing more than a self-centred urge to perpetuate oneself for ever and a day. All Religious and Spiritual and Mystical Leaders fall foul of this existential dilemma. They pay lip-service to the notion of self-sacrifice – weeping crocodile tears at noble martyrdom – whilst selfishly pursuing the Eternal After-Life. The root cause of all the ills of humankind can be sheeted home to this single, basic fact: the overriding importance of the survival of ‘self’. As for being happy ... the manifestation of love – the antidote for malice – and the manifestation of compassion – the antidote for sorrow – self-evidently bespeaks the spurious basis for their contingent happiness.
ALAN: One point you made in Article 13 of your Journal, I found inescapable – ‘For Love Agapé‚ and Divine Compassion to be effective a lonely and resentful victim is required in order to receive them and feel healed’. This, for me at least, is a very telling point and was something I experienced recently, when exploring sorrow. Without someone experiencing sorrow, compassion, be it human or Divine, cannot exist. So, if Divine Love and Compassion requires a victim, it is not harmless.
RICHARD: Aye ... you understand it well. This is common-sense operating – one’s native intelligence – yet there are those that condemn thought.
ALAN: This is also evinced by the religious wars, which have raged through the ages and continue to embroil a large percentage of the world’s population in pain, sorrow and misery. And also the cult followings of recent ‘gurus’ who, rather than practice love and compassion, end up with intolerance, anger and hatred (as excellently documented in Peter’s journal).
RICHARD: To me, this is all so obvious to anyone with the eyes to see. However, the exposé‚ of the much-revered Holy Being’s diabolical under-pinning does not make one popular ... for some peculiar reason.
ALAN: So, the evidence shows that the ASC does not produce the desired result (being happy and harmless) or, at least, the harmless part. However, this is an intellectual argument and is unlikely to deter ‘me’ from pursuing the Glamour and the Glory and the Glitz, as you so aptly put it.
RICHARD: Could you expand upon this? I am always interested to hear other people’s views ... the ‘I’ that I was had no experience of discussing these matters with a person like me before-hand. Where you say ‘intellectual’, do you mean ‘not actually seen’ ... as in experientially understood?
ALAN: Digressing for one moment, my own experience confirms your suggestion that ‘I’ is who I think I am and ‘me’ is who I feel I am.
RICHARD: I am pleased to hear this ... it is excellent that an accurate description of these matters can be both conveyed and corroborated by any discerning person. Especially with you, Alan, as you are responding only to words – having not met me personally – and I am very pleased by this because it means that I am not required for the process of understanding (as in a ‘personality cult’ that can grow around a ‘charismatic leader’). Common-sense can be conveyed by the written word. This means that the third alternative can be accessed by anyone discriminating enough long after I am physically dead.
ALAN: When in an ASC, I had no thought or sense of me, as an individual, but certainly felt I was ‘me’, or rather ‘Me’, with a capital letter – undivided from creation (and the Creator). Having said that, in some recent PCE’s, I have ‘seen’ the attraction of Divine Love and Compassion (and mightily seductive and beautiful it looks too!) and chosen not to pursue that path – but who does the choosing?
RICHARD: A good question ... my suggestion would be that it is one’s native intelligence that does the choosing and not a ‘who’. I say this because it is my experience during eleven years of swanning along in a state of Love Agapé‚ and Divine Compassion, that common-sense would not let the ‘Me’ that I was get away with this solipsistic ‘Timeless and Spaceless’ experience that ‘Me’ was living ... the clock ticked the hours and the sun moved through the sky, for example. I find it so hilarious these days, when reading some master’s discourse on ‘Timelessness’, where they look at their diamond-studded watch and say: ‘Enough for now ... Evening Darshan will be at 6.00 PM’.
ALAN: Writing this, I am having more and more difficulty in differentiating between the two – if I am in an ASC (assuming it to be ‘me’ as ‘being’) how do I know – as stated above, there is no way for ‘me’ to see myself ‘being’. The only yardstick, for me, appears to be whether I am experiencing Divine Love and Compassion – is that the only difference?
RICHARD: Not only Love Agapé‚ and Divine Compassion – they are the obvious yardsticks – but, more importantly: identity. This is why I sent you that description by the young Mr. Jiddu Krishnamurti some time ago. Vis.:
I had numerous experiences of a similar nature myself ... and spent eleven years in an altered state of consciousness. I also had other experiences that I overlooked in favour of these ‘I am everything and Everything is Me’ experiences. If I had not been taken in by delusions of grandeur I would have paid particular notice of experiences like this one:
Without any identity (‘I’ as ego and ‘me’ as soul) the distance or separation between ‘me’ and ‘my’ senses – and thus the external world – disappears. To be the senses as a bare awareness is apperception, a pure consciousness experience of the world as-it-is. Because there is no ‘I’ as an observer – a little person inside one’s head – to have sensations, I am the sensations. There is nothing except the series of sensations which happen ... not to ‘me’ but just happening ... moment by moment ... one after another. To be these sensations, as distinct from having them, engenders the most astonishing sense of freedom and release. Consequently, I am living in peace and tranquillity; a meaningful peace and tranquillity. Life is intrinsically purposeful, the reason for existence lies openly all around. Being in this very air I live in, I am constantly aware of it; I breathe it in and out; I see it, I hear it, I taste it, I smell it, I touch it, all of the time. It never goes away ... nor has it ever been away. ‘I’ and/or ‘me’ was standing in the way of meaning.
When narcissism packs its bags and slinks out of the door ... then I am this physical universe experiencing itself as a sensate and reflective human being. As me, this universe can be intelligent ... there is no ‘Intelligence’ behind this universe creating and running the whole show.
ALAN: From what I have read it appears others experience anger, while in an ASC. When I was in what I called an ASC, I could not possibly have experienced annoyance, never mind anger, and I think you said you had not experienced anger since your enlightenment in 1980?
RICHARD: That is correct – inasmuch that full-blown anger never arose – however minor annoyance did ... which is another area where native intelligence made me question enlightenment. I have located the following exchange: [Richard]: ‘Just look at all the recorded instances of anger in the many Masters that have paraded their stuff throughout history. Just look at all the religious wars that follow the emergence of any charismatic saviour. Why do you think they all have to advocate pacifism, if they can actually trust their precious state of ‘being’ so much, eh? [Konrad]: ‘Right! And that is why I do not follow that course. I am angry at times, and I do not deny it. I deny, however, that enlightenment is a way to end all anger once and for all. I consider that nonsense. [Richard]: ‘So do I ... the altered state of consciousness called spiritual enlightenment does not end anger. An actual freedom does, however, which is one of the many reason why it is superior to enlightenment. I may be a lot of things, but I am not silly. I lived enlightenment for eleven years and irritation came up in me four times (once peeved and three time annoyed). These days I do not even get peeved ... and have not done so since 1992. [endquote].
Now, four times in eleven years may not sound like much ... but it was enough to make me question. Also, there were three or four ‘bleed-throughs’ of fear from the sublimated passions in that period ... the evidence indicating the transcendent nature of the ASC became too much to ignore. I owe a lot to my companion at the time for her persistence in endeavouring to ‘unmask the guru’ (this is her verbatim – and very apt – terminology at the time).
ALAN: Also I did not have any urges to stop doing anything – from eating meat to enjoying sex – on the contrary, all such things became a pure delight. What caused you to became vegetarian, vegan and, ultimately, fruitarian?
RICHARD: That was all in an effort to ‘purify myself’ according to the wisdom of the ages that I was busily studying at the time. Once again, there was something ‘amiss’ about the state of being I was living. I called it ‘Absolute Freedom’ – and denied being enlightened – because there was something different about it that did not quite fit what I was reading. Consequently, I initially reasoned that I was doing something wrong ... and set out to correct the fault by whatever means the Saints and Sages advocated. Eventually I wound up on an uninhabited island ... I was homeless and itinerant; single and celibate; no worldly possessions other than what I could carry; no family ties; no drugs whatsoever including tea, coffee, sugar or salt; no ambitions or desires ... in other words: whatever was traditionally seen as an impediment to freedom I discarded. It was on that island that I first experienced the ‘Greater Beyond’ (as I called actual freedom then). It was then I discovered that it was Spiritual Enlightenment that was at fault ... and that I could ‘purify’ myself via these ‘Tried and True’ means until the moon turned blue to no avail.
ALAN: What it seems to boil down to, is that my experience of the ASC was that it was identical to what you describe as Actual Freedom – with Divine Love and Compassion thrown in.
RICHARD: I would suggest that you look with interest at identity ... particularly in relation to what I wrote (above) about being the experience of the sensations. I will re-post a quote of yours from your Web Page as it is worth considering again. Vis.:
This ‘I was them and they were me’ phrase – to me – comes close to the ‘I am everything and Everything is Me’ experience of the ASC. I am only going by the words you write, however, and may be mistaken. I know that we have discussed this paragraph of yours before ... but I consider it well worthwhile re-visiting in light of your honest queries in this post.
ALAN: Fascinating isn’t it. I look forward to when I have more time to read and research further – which leads to another point, but I will cover that in my reply to Vineeto on ‘stuckness’.
RICHARD: It is all very fascinating indeed ... and I am well-pleased that we can easily discuss these matters. It is high time that an intimate and honest appraisal of human experience be frankly aired. Have I missed your mail on ‘stuckness’ ... or is it still in the pipeline?
To get out of ‘stuckness’ one gets off one’s backside and does whatever one knows best to activate delight. Delight is what is humanly possible, given sufficient pure intent obtained from the felicity/ innocuity born of the pure consciousness experience, and from the position of delight, one can vitalise one’s joie de vivre by the amazement at the fun of it all ... and then one can – with sufficient abandon – become over-joyed and move into marvelling at being here and doing this business called being alive now. Then one is no longer intuitively making sense of life ... the delicious wonder of it all drives any such instinctive meaning away. Such luscious wonder fosters the innate condition of naiveté – the nourishing of which is essential if fascination in it all is to occur – and the charm of life itself easily engages dedication to peace-on-earth. Then, as one gazes intently at the world about by glancing lightly with sensuously caressing eyes, out of the corner of one’s eye comes – sweetly – the magical fairy-tale-like paradise that this verdant earth actually is ... and one is the experiencing of what is happening.
But refrain from possessing it and making it your own ... or else ‘twill vanish as softly as it appeared.
RICHARD: After all, one has been incessantly mortified and forced to be unassuming – ‘don’t get uppity’ or ‘who do you think you are?’ or ‘know your place in life’ – and one has always secretly felt in one’s heart of hearts that one is foreordained for greatness. Narcissism reigns supreme!
ALAN: Interesting this feeling that ‘one is foreordained for greatness’ – I suspect it is pretty universal. But, where does this tie in with ‘there must be something more to life than this?’, which is the memory of the PCE. Perhaps the difference is that even in the ‘enlightened state’, the ‘foreordained greatness’, which you used to be in, you still experienced ‘there must be something more to life than this?’
RICHARD: No, not ‘something more to life than this’ ... the prevailing feeling was that Life was completed and Death contained the next. The over-riding flavour of the ASC is being charged to carry out the ‘Sacred Mission’ commission ... and I often pondered: ‘Then what?’ (given that ‘Me’ would succeed where all others had failed ... when vanity meets conceit the resultant exaltation supplants sensibility). The pervasive impression was that not only the earth but the entire cosmos would pass away when the last person ‘came through’ ... it was all but a set-up so that we humans could realise who we really were. The next obvious question was again: ‘Then what?’ This is where there was no answer ... it was ‘Unknowable’ and would not become obvious/be revealed until after physical death. There was this whole question of ‘The Absolute’ ... even in the Enlightenment State there is still an unqualified and irreducible ‘Otherness’ – an unbridgeable gulf because of the body – even in Union and Oneness. It is this inviolate distance that preserves ‘The Sacred’ as being ‘Unknowable’ ... because there is the body.
RICHARD: As all this was happening [while the grand ‘Me’ was supplanting the social ‘me’], a passing thought occurred to me, which was briefly contemplated ... then banished: Who or what was it that was observing these two ‘me’s ... the social ‘me’ and the grand ‘Me’? This trifling question was to be of immense benefit years later when I realised that I was living in a delusion and that there was an actual freedom lying beyond’.
ALAN: There is undoubtedly (i.e. by experience) a ‘common-sense’, which can operate, without this ‘common-sense’, necessarily ‘being’ something. It is an experiential matter – with ‘common-sense’ everything is self evidentially obvious and perhaps that is all one can say. One question which occurs, from what you say, is what has happened to others’ common-sense, when in a state of enlightenment? Assuming ‘common-sense’ to be something which exists, others experiencing an ASC choose to ignore their common-sense, that nagging question, which the grand ‘You’ could not ignore. Having seen the attraction of the Glamour and the Glory and the Glitz, as you put it, I can understand how easy it is to ignore ‘common-sense’. Can you expand further on why ‘You’ chose not to ignore it – why you?
RICHARD: Why Richard? It stems from wanting to know, once and for all, just what was going on ... wanting to find out just what this entire business called living was. That question (‘Who or what was it that was observing these two ‘me’s ... the social ‘me’ and the grand ‘Me’?’) was the basis for my investigation ... it was the bedrock from which I roamed abroad. Why would I have this rigour and not the others? An congenital integrity – not being susceptible to blandishment and flattery – and dignity. There was a certain quandary in my dealings with others when it came time to reveal my status so as to effect the desired result ... self-deception did not sit too well with me when it came to the nitty-gritty of interaction. I just knew in my heart of hearts that I had intentionally chosen for apotheosis – cunningly disguised as being chosen – over the actual. I was living out the fantasy of greatness partly out of curiosity. I discovered that it was humanity’s fantasy ... and I have always had a strong sense of individualism.
RICHARD: Mostly, however, the Eastern mystical ‘terms of reference’ allow for full realisation of one’s Divine identity.
ALAN: This still does not explain why some become such extremes. What do you think differs Franklin Jones from a Buddha or a Barry Long, or any others? Is it just ‘terms of reference’?
RICHARD: If the only examples of massive self-delusion were the likes of Mr. Mervin Irani (aka Meher Baba), for instance, then it could be put down to ‘terms of reference’ in that he and his brethren are immersed in a culture that supports that purview. Mr. Franklin Jones, however, being born and raised in a milieu that does not/did not allow for deification demonstrates that the motivation lies deeper ... deep within the Human Condition. I refer to the psychic realm, of course ... an area that you have some demurral about.
RICHARD: There is no one that I know of that has no mystical background ... and I have scoured hundreds and hundreds of books during the last eighteen years. This is all very new in human history.
ALAN: It is difficult to believe (that word) that there has been no other such experience in human history. I am aware of your extensive reading and am sure that you would have discovered anything obvious.
RICHARD: It has more than a little to do with technological progress ... less than 100 years ago I would have been insulated from the exposé that comparative experience reveals. The mass communication network of radio, television, books, newspapers, magazines – and now the Internet – not only allows for collation and analysis but an exponential expansion of the accepted mind-set. Also, the invention this century of weapons of mass-destruction – chemical, biological and nuclear warfare – has a salutary effect upon complacency. Warfare has reached its zenith as being even remotely a viable way to settle differences ... the MAD policy (Mutually Assured Destruction) of the Cold War was aptly named. I got the message.
ALAN: It remains possible that others’ experiences have been ‘translated and interpreted’, or that they simply ‘kept quiet’, because of the existing mores (and danger!).
RICHARD: I think not. The courage required to effect extinction of identity is enormous ... the perceived danger from the zealots amongst the denizens of the ‘Land of Lament’ is small beer compared to that experience. Anyone too craven to face the opprobrium of their peers would be too pusillanimous to go all the way in the first place.
ALAN: I know from my own experiences that I was very reluctant to discuss them (complicated by ‘my’ not admitting they had happened) until I discovered someone else who had experienced the same.
RICHARD: In all fairness (and to soften what I wrote above) it was not too long ago that people were being burnt at the stake for hereticism. Thus this atavistic memory is buried in the human psyche ... Mr. Carl Jung’s ‘Collective Unconscious’. There is still at least one religion that is currently pursuing the draconian ways of suppressing dissent ... so the communal psychic memory is freshened.
ALAN: So, of course, it was ‘natural’ for people to say they had a ‘vision of god’, or some such – and back we are to ‘terms of reference’. The point I am making is that when someone had a PCE, even if it did not degenerate into an ASC, both their report, and that of others, would be of a religious, or spiritual experience. However, that does not, at least wholly, explain the fact that you appear to be the only living example of what you call ‘actual freedom’.
RICHARD: Once again: Why Richard? One reason lies in my personal history where, being in a war, my life became a living nightmare ... literally. I was trapped in an horrific world of dread and foreboding and in order to escape from the savage barbarity of the situation my mind somehow created a new ‘reality’ built out of the extremities of fear, which hallucination I would call ‘unreality’. Thus I escaped into a place where all is calm and peaceful that was not unlike being in the centre of a cyclone – all about rages fear and hatred, anger and aggression – but in there all was apparently calm and peaceful.
Thus I knew from experience that it is possible to create an ‘unreality’ in order to escape the grim and glum real-world reality. 26 years later I came to realise that the ‘Greater Reality’ was nothing but an escape – the mystical realm is a culturally revered hallucination – and that completion was already here ... and had always been. (There are three world’s altogether ... the natural reality that 6.0 billion people live in and the super-natural Reality that .000001 of the population live in ... and this actual world. I call it actual because it is the world of this body and its sense organs only ... and nary a god or goddess to be found. This is because I left my ‘self’ behind in the ‘real world’ ... where it belongs). I would not – and could not – live a lie.
ALAN: Now that we have this marvellous means of communication, which will undoubtedly develop further, who knows what pearls will be uncovered, like me, on the opposite side of the world.
RICHARD: Aye ... the Internet is my chosen means of dissemination for the obvious reason of being interactive and rapid. The electronic copying and distribution capacity of a mailing list service – with it’s multiple feed-back capability – is second to none.
ALAN: I appreciate that words are all we have, however it is unlikely that words alone will be enough to dissuade one from the ASC. This is where it gets fascinating because the question then arises, what do words appeal to? Having set out in 1997 to discover the meaning of my experiences, I could all too easily have become enlightened. However, with your story as a ‘warning’, I think I have managed to avoid this and have turned aside on at least two occasions from their attractions (and examined them once). So, are we back to common sense? I shy away a bit from using ‘native intelligence’ as it tends to convey something like ‘Cosmic Intelligence’ to me.
RICHARD: I use the phrase ‘native intelligence’ in the meaning of ‘autochthonous acumen’ or ‘indigenous prudence’ or ‘congenital judicity’. I am meaning a down-to-earth and matter-of-fact practicality ... an innate sensibility. The term ‘Cosmic Intelligence’ is anthropomorphic and reveals a dearth of sensible reason ... intelligence exists only in the human brain.
ALAN: By reading your words, the necessary paradigm is in place and one is prepared for the pitfalls, so maybe that is all one can say, but the question still lingers – what is prepared? It is obviously not ‘me’ and even using the expression ‘common-sense’ conveys a sense of something ‘being’. After writing the above, I got a bit stuck on where to go next, so was attempting to recall what happened at the times I ‘saw’ the attraction of the ASC and decided not to pursue it. And perhaps there lies the answer, because there was no ‘decision’ – it was more like a recognition, an observation.
RICHARD: An observation ... then recognition ... then action. It is quite simple: the human brain likes to think – just as the eyes like to see and the ears like to hear and so on – and problem-solving is what it is very good at. (When ‘I’ am no longer ‘in there’ with ‘my’ needs and shoulds and wants and desires and morals and ethics and values and principles it all happens of its own accord with remarkable sagacity). Thus in a PCE, when the ASC becomes attractive, a clouding of sensible reason can be observed and this dimming of intelligence will trigger alarm bells.
ALAN: Perhaps it is simply memory which does the job – something like (without forming the words) ‘Oh yes, this is the enlightenment one has read about and been warned about, how interesting’. This also ties in with the next point: [Richard]: ‘I also had other experiences that I overlooked in favour of these ‘I am everything and Everything is Me’ experiences. If I had not been taken in by delusions of grandeur I would have paid particular notice of experiences like the first time I experienced being the senses only during a PCE’ ..[endquote]. Yes, while identity is operating it is not possible to be ‘here’. But what is it that can take ‘particular notice of experiences like this’, when ‘me’ or ‘Me’ is going to do all it can to ignore or forget them?
RICHARD: What it is that takes ‘particular notice’ is the native intelligence which is me as-this-body. There are three I’s altogether ... but only one is actual. I have been here for 51 years (behind the scenes for 34 plus 11 years) and have my own memory. The ‘walk-in’ that dominated for the 34 plus 11 years – complete with ‘his’ affective memory has vanished entirely – leaving me here where I have always been ... ‘he’ had no chance whatsoever to be here. Thus when ‘he’ realised that ‘he’ was an alien entity ‘he’ self-immolated so that I would become evident ... and in order for the already existing peace-on-earth to be apparent.
RICHARD: Now, four times irritated in eleven years may not sound like much ... but it was enough to make me question. Also, there were three or four ‘bleed-throughs’ of fear from the sublimated passions in that period ... the evidence indicating the transcendent nature of the ASC became too much to ignore.
ALAN: Again this raises the question, too much for who or what to ignore?
RICHARD: Too much for salubrity, sobriety, lucidity, benignity, serendipity, propriety, dignity, gentility, congruity, nobility, magnanimity, integrity, generosity and so on. This is where native intelligence and communal sensitivity coincide.
ALAN: So perhaps this was a large contributing factor, without which you would have continued to swan along, ignoring the evidence of your senses?
RICHARD: Without a doubt ... I could not be where I am today without her invaluable assistance. I could not have done it on my own ... the task was too great to ‘crack the code’ alone and unaided. For far too long has a benighted ‘humanity’ imposed its values and beliefs upon its children – the newest recruits to the human race – to easily shake them off single-handed. It required an enterprising partnership to break free of the centuries of conditioning that overlaid the Human Condition ... and her tenacity of purpose left no room for further deception and continued procrastination.
RICHARD: That was all in an effort to ‘purify myself’ according to the wisdom of the ages that I was busily studying at the time. Once again, there was something ‘amiss’ about the state of being I was living. I called it’ Absolute Freedom’ – and denied being enlightened – because there was something different about it that did not quite fit what I was reading.
ALAN: This fits well with my own experience – I attempted following (at least, reading) a few spiritual ‘masters’ and found it wanting – often a load of codswallop. So there again is this difference in degree, or is it back to our ‘terms of reference’?
RICHARD: To me, it is all not much more complicated than it being the times we live in. The twentieth century has been a century of exponential technological growth, leaving little room to continue to ignore the obvious. Just look at the medical discoveries going on regarding the brain for just one example. Peoples like Mr. Gotama the Sakyan and Mr. Rinzai and so on, not know anything about the seat of emotions being located in what is popularly called the ‘lizard brain’, looked elsewhere for solutions.
ALAN: Digressing for a moment, my searching (and dismissing) shows me the pernicious hold which the ‘gurus’ have on their followers. I was several times tempted by the seduction of ‘if you do it correctly, then you will get it, then you will understand’. Fortunately something always said ‘no, this is actually a load of crap!’. The only problem I have with actual freedom has been ‘me’ saying ‘shit, this isn’t a load of crap – run like hell, quick’.
RICHARD: Interestingly enough my companion for eleven years liked to quote Mr. Oscar Wilde: ‘In this world there are two tragedies. One is not getting what one wants, and the other is getting it. The last is much the worst’. (Mr. George Bernard Shaw expressed a similar idea: ‘There are two tragedies in life. One is to lose your heart’s desire. The other is to gain it’). To this day I cannot understand this kind of thinking.
RICHARD: I would suggest that you look with interest at identity ... This ‘I was them and they were me’ phrase – to me – comes close to the ‘I am everything and Everything is Me’ experience of the ASC. I am only going by the words you write, however, and may be mistaken. I know that we have discussed this paragraph of yours before ... but I consider it well worthwhile re-visiting in light of your honest queries in this post.
ALAN: I think you are absolutely correct. I only had the experience that once, though I can recall similar experiences in the past – mainly of the variety that everything was Love, I was Love, so everything was in me and I was in everything, indivisible.
RICHARD: I cannot resist putting in a quote from Mr. Mohan ‘Rajneesh’ Jain: ‘The only basic right is to become God. And unless you have found God within yourself, everything else is mundane’. (From: ‘Osho: On Basic Human Rights’).
ALAN: I even have a bit of conversation on tape, which is quite a hoot and would be extremely embarrassing, if I retained that faculty. I will transcribe a bit sometime.
RICHARD: I look forward to it, Alan – the more that is written the better – because I liked this description of the value of dissemination:
What a relief indeed ... if it were not for death’s oblivion I could not be happy and harmless.
The Third Alternative
(Peace On Earth In This Life Time As This Flesh And Blood Body)
Here is an actual freedom from the Human Condition, surpassing Spiritual Enlightenment and any other Altered State Of Consciousness, and challenging all philosophy, psychiatry, metaphysics (including quantum physics with its mystic cosmogony), anthropology, sociology ... and any religion along with its paranormal theology. Discarding all of the beliefs that have held humankind in thralldom for aeons, the way has now been discovered that cuts through the ‘Tried and True’ and enables anyone to be, for the first time, a fully free and autonomous individual living in utter peace and tranquillity, beholden to no-one.