Actual Freedom – Mailing List ‘B’ Correspondence

Richard’s Correspondence on Mailing List ‘B’

with Respondent No. 5

Some Of The Topics Covered

cruelty – benevolence – compassion – sorrow – etymology – Mr. Jiddu Krishnamurti moved to tears – compassion is ‘pathos in common’ – Compassion/Karuna – labelling – not really patient – not peddling ideas – not off-topic stuff – a fundamental change by any criteria – discussing and investigating the teachings of Mr. Jiddu Krishnamurti – not a try – indeed distinguishable from ideas – only ever seeing ideas – the only example

September 21 1999:

RESPONDENT No. 35: Richard, you have been diagnosed as psychotic. You are feeling great, wonderful, you’ve overcome all the human limitations, life is bliss to you. You may also know that one of the surest signs of severe mental illness is the inability to see and admit the serious symptoms. The person who is really mentally disturbed is the last to admit it, because he has a strong sense of being right versus everyone else being wrong or just dim. The grandiose feelings, feelings of being super-human give you great comfort in the world where the only certain thing is uncertainty. If/when you come back from your hallucination, you will have a long and painful journey to make. You will have to admit that you are no more or no less than any of us. You will feel pain that is beyond words. I just hope you’ll have help.

RESPONDENT No. 23: In a world of uncertainty, you sound pretty certain here. You are being cruel for its own sake. This is disturbing.

RESPONDENT: Coming from No. 23, this is utterly hilarious. Moreover, if Richard is as egoless as he asserts or psychotic as per No. 35’s remarkable intercontinental diagnosis, where is the cruelty perceived? Surely not in the eyes of an egoless man or of a psychotic who imagines he is an egoless man!

RICHARD: Irregardless of the issue of whether Richard is either egoless or psychotic – or actually free of the human condition as a third alternative – any cruelty, first and foremost, lies in the heart of the ‘giver’ and inevitably turns in on itself as existential sorrow. Thus, in the final analysis, it is the ‘giver’ who suffers the most intimately. As for the ‘receiver’ of any cruelty, it is entirely up to them what they do with it ... apart from physical cruelty, no-one can force their cruelty on another without the other’s acquiescence and compliance.

It is a truly and remarkably free world we live in!

September 23 1999:

RESPONDENT No. 37: By the way, I think questioning the supposedly benevolent intentions of others under the guise of ‘concern’ and ‘sympathy’ is a sign of health, not illness.

RICHARD: Sometimes it is helpful to work from the etymological roots of words ... and as the word ‘concern’ comes from the Latin ‘concernere’ (sift, distinguish) I would endorse it as an apt description of a sign of health, yes. But as ‘sympathy’ comes from the Greek ‘sym’ (together, alike) and ‘pathy’ (suffering, feeling) I am hard-pushed to see ‘suffering together’ or ‘feeling alike’ as a sign of health (similarly with ‘compassion’: the Latin ‘passio’ equals the Greek ‘pathos’ hence ‘together in pathos’). There is a widespread belief that suffering is good for you ... whereas in my experience the only good thing about suffering is when it comes to an end. Permanently.

RESPONDENT: Words evolve in common usage beyond their ‘etymological roots’, of which even the best communicators are seldom aware to the extent typical among pedagogues.

RICHARD: Yes.

RESPONDENT: Moreover, when we use English or other western language to translate from Sanskrit, Farsi, etc. we unavoidably lose much if not most of the sense the original words convey in their original contexts.

RICHARD: Yes, all the more reason to go back to the roots and proceed from there. I make full use of etymology dictionaries whenever I come across a Sanskrit (or whatever) word in a context wherein I am unaccustomed to seeing it used that way. Given that I have intimate experience of English words straying so much that they can come to mean pretty well what the speaker wishes, then the same holds true for other languages. Indeed, the following came in on the Buddha-L Mailing List only today (where scholastic pedagogy reigns supreme):

[quote]: ‘It is also to be remembered that Sanskrit was largely an oral rather than a written tongue, and plays upon words were common. Nobody took much note of accuracy when playing upon words (especially not in the ‘Classical’ era – examples from the Mahabharata can be easily given.) Indeed the same sort of thing is common in India even today. Who knows, in fact, whether the original was ‘Avalokiteshwara’ or ‘Avalokitesvara’ (or even ‘Avalokitasvara’)? I would venture to assert, nobody really knows. And after a while, a word in India is taken to mean whatever the listener wants it to mean, especially in argument. (Witness the transformations in the meaning of the word dharma over the ages, and the difference between the Hindu and Buddhist ways in which it is and was used.)’ [endquote].

The Post-Modernists may fondly think they are breaking new ground ... yet the hoary pundits have been fudging the issue for centuries.

RESPONDENT: To rely on etymological analysis in a multi-cultural forum is thus as likely mislead as to clarify, leading to an ilk of precision that amounts to a stilted linguistic fundamentalism.

RICHARD: Okay ... given that what I was saying above was that ‘suffering together’ is not a sign of health, what word or words would you use to convey a dispassionate consideration and care for one’s fellow human being if one is not to understand the affective roots of the commonly used words for such sensible concern ... such as ‘pity’, ‘sympathy’, ‘commiseration’, ‘solicitous’, ‘empathy’ and ‘compassionate’?

RESPONDENT: At their worst, such exercises are nothing more or other than the professor attempting to impress and intimidate the denizens of English 101. Pedantically.

RICHARD: Indeed, but at its best, such matter-of-fact practicalness is eminently worthwhile – it promotes clarity in thinking and communicating – and I am never interested in settling for second-best.

September 25 1999:

RESPONDENT No. 37: By the way, I think questioning the supposedly benevolent intentions of others under the guise of ‘concern’ and ‘sympathy’ is a sign of health, not illness.

RICHARD: Sometimes it is helpful to work from the etymological roots of words ... and as the word ‘concern’ comes from the Latin ‘concernere’ (sift, distinguish) I would endorse it as an apt description of a sign of health, yes. But as ‘sympathy’ comes from the Greek ‘sym’ (together, alike) and ‘pathy’ (suffering, feeling) I am hard-pushed to see ‘suffering together’ or ‘feeling alike’ as a sign of health (similarly with ‘compassion’: the Latin ‘passio’ equals the Greek ‘pathos’ hence ‘together in pathos’). There is a widespread belief that suffering is good for you ... whereas in my experience the only good thing about suffering is when it comes to an end. Permanently.

RESPONDENT: Words evolve in common usage beyond their ‘etymological roots’, of which even the best communicators are seldom aware to the extent typical among pedagogues.

RICHARD: Yes.

RESPONDENT: Moreover, when we use English or other western language to translate from Sanskrit, Farsi, etc. we unavoidably lose much if not most of the sense the original words convey in their original contexts.

RICHARD: Yes, all the more reason to go back to the roots and proceed from there. I make full use of etymology dictionaries whenever I come across a Sanskrit (or whatever) word in a context wherein I am unaccustomed to seeing it used that way. Given that I have intimate experience of English words straying so much that they can come to mean pretty well what the speaker wishes, then the same holds true for other languages. Indeed, the following came in on the Buddha-L Mailing List only today (where scholastic pedagogy reigns supreme):

[quote]: ‘It is also to be remembered that Sanskrit was largely an oral rather than a written tongue, and plays upon words were common. Nobody took much note of accuracy when playing upon words (especially not in the ‘Classical’ era – examples from the Mahabharata can be easily given.) Indeed the same sort of thing is common in India even today. Who knows, in fact, whether the original was ‘Avalokiteshwara’ or ‘Avalokitesvara’ (or even ‘Avalokitasvara’)? I would venture to assert, nobody really knows. And after a while, a word in India is taken to mean whatever the listener wants it to mean, especially in argument. (Witness the transformations in the meaning of the word dharma over the ages, and the difference between the Hindu and Buddhist ways in which it is and was used.)’ [endquote].

The Post-Modernists may fondly think they are breaking new ground ... yet the hoary pundits have been fudging the issue for centuries.

RESPONDENT: To rely on etymological analysis in a multi-cultural forum is thus as likely mislead as to clarify, leading to an ilk of precision that amounts to a stilted linguistic fundamentalism.

RICHARD: Okay ... given that what I was saying (above) was that ‘suffering together’ is not a sign of health, what word or words would you use to convey a dispassionate consideration and care for one’s fellow human being if one is not to understand the affective roots of the commonly used words for such sensible concern ... such as ‘pity’, ‘sympathy’, ‘empathy’, ‘commiseration’, ‘solicitous’ and ‘compassionate’?

RESPONDENT: Since ‘compassion’ in this forum is far more likely to be used in the sense Gautama Buddha (according to his supposed transcribers) used it in another language, if you insist on playing the scholar feel free to analyse the etymology of the original word Buddha (allegedly) uttered. The Greek and/or Latin origins of the translated word are in this case entirely irrelevant, as it is quite clear from context that Buddha had transcended personal suffering and thus was not ‘suffering together’ with anyone.

RICHARD: Of course I am free to go chasing about through etymological dictionaries to ‘analyse the etymology of the original word Buddha (allegedly) uttered’ – and I thank you for giving me permission – but I rather fail to see any reason to do so. As any sophomore worthy of their salt should know, this argument you put forward would easily fall under what is generally classified as ‘The Fallacy of Irrelevant Purpose’. If you cast your eagle eye up (to the top of the page) you will find that I was responding to what the writer saw as other posters on this Mailing List ‘questioning the supposedly benevolent intentions of others under the guise of ‘concern’ and ‘sympathy’. If you are now proposing that other posters on this Mailing List have ‘transcended personal suffering and thus are not ‘suffering together’ with anyone’ then you have done an abrupt about-face on your previously posted opinion of other posters’ accomplishments.

Until you can demonstrate this, then I will continue to work on the entirely reasonable assumption that they have not yet ‘transcended personal suffering’ and that therefore they are indeed ‘suffering together’ in their ‘concern’ and ‘sympathy’. And this ‘suffering together’ form of ‘concern’ and ‘sympathy’ is certainly evident in the post that prompted the writer to make this ‘by the way’ comment in the first place.

When I write I keep my response in context.

RESPONDENT: Of course you are far more familiar with English etymology, which you presented because it coincidentally served your rhetorical purpose. There is in my view no better English word than ‘compassion’ to describe ongoing sensitivity to suffering sans personal suffering. Given its evolved consensus meaning and implications it suffices at least as well as any alternative English offers.

RICHARD: Okay ... I will go with you in your irrelevant dissertation: seeing that this is a Mailing List set up under the auspices of the ‘Teachings’ brought into the world by Mr. Jiddu Krishnamurti (who used the word ‘compassion’ frequently and with special emphasis on what he meant by it) then it would serve far better to use his example than speculate about what a long-dead deity such as Mr. Gotama the Sakyan may or may not have said or done (if he lived at all).

As Mr. Jiddu Krishnamurti was sometimes moved to tears, becoming visibly distressed, when giving talks about human relationship (and as this is on tape no one will have to go chasing anywhere through any ancient scrolls) there is no evidence of dispassionate consideration and care. It would appear then that, seeing as at least one enlightened person puts lie to what you say above about the ‘ongoing sensitivity to suffering sans personal suffering’ meaning that you are trying to impose upon the word, it may be quite reasonable to consider that the etymology of ‘compassion’ (‘pathos in common’) still holds true despite your assurances that it has an ‘evolved consensus meaning and implications’ that makes it exempt from the meaning ‘suffering together’.

I am happy to explore any other irrelevancies you fancy to bring forward ... until then: given that what I was saying (further above) was that ‘suffering together’ is not a sign of health, what word or words would you use to convey a dispassionate consideration and care for one’s fellow human being if one is not to understand the affective roots of the commonly used words for such sensible concern ... such as ‘pity’, ‘sympathy’, ‘empathy’, ‘commiseration’, ‘solicitous’ and ‘compassionate’?

*

RESPONDENT: At their worst, such exercises are nothing more or other than the professor attempting to impress and intimidate the denizens of English 101. Pedantically.

RICHARD: Indeed, but at its best, such matter-of-fact practicalness is eminently worthwhile – it promotes clarity in thinking and communicating – and I am never interested in settling for second-best.

RESPONDENT: It is clear that such a hypothetical ‘at its best’ scenario is mere wishful thinking in regard to your rhetorical use of English etymology in this instance.

RICHARD: But it is not clear at all ... if it is clear for you then might I suggest that you revisit your understanding of what sublimation and transcendence means?

RESPONDENT: The result is not even ‘settling for second-best’, it is a third-rate obfuscation of what ‘compassion’ has come to mean in matters of the human psyche and spirit, a pedant’s self-serving side trip that deservedly ended in a cul de sac.

RICHARD: Yet the word compassion ‘has come to mean in matters of the human psyche and spirit’ precisely what its etymology demonstrates ... unless you are proposing that Mr. Jiddu Krishnamurti faked his tears and distress in an elaborate theatrical performance designed to deceive his audience into feeling that he truly cared?

The ‘cul de sac’ would appear to have no existence outside of your dour purview.

RESPONDENT: In your supposed effort to avoid ‘settling’, you have achieved your usual sound and fury – and signified nothing of any relevance.

RICHARD: You may very well be surprised to find just what is relevant and what is not, eh?

September 27 1999:

RESPONDENT: Since Richard’s latest face saving attempt is so weak as to not warrant refutation, it will get none from here.

RICHARD: Quite frankly, I did not expect you to throw in the towel so quickly ... and over such a simple issue, too. So, another shining light of the K-List bites the dust as he scurries for cover. Oh well ... c’est la vie, I guess.

RESPONDENT: One is reminded of nothing so much as ‘The Black Knight’ from ‘Monty Python and The Holy Grail’, limblessly challenging his perceived opponent while obviously unable to mount even a semblance of a pursuit.

RICHARD: Hmm ... methinks thou doest protest too much. What was that you were saying (above) about ‘saving face’?

RESPONDENT: What a waste of a first-rate vocabulary.

RICHARD: No ... nothing is wasted. From this day forward you will never again be able think of compassion without also thinking ‘pathos in common’ ... for I do have my ways and means of getting a fact established.

Nothing is ever wasted.

September 30 1999:

RESPONDENT: Since Richard’s latest face saving attempt is so weak as to not warrant refutation, it will get none from here.

RICHARD: Quite frankly, I did not expect you to throw in the towel so quickly ... and over such a simple issue, too.

RESPONDENT: On the other hand, this attempt to draw me into wasting more time on the exchange was entirely predictable.

RICHARD: Am I to understand that you think that an investigation into the character, quality, nature or disposition of compassion (touted as a vital component of the spiritual cure-all for all the ills of humankind) is a waste of time?

Why?

*

RICHARD: So, another shining light of the K-List bites the dust as he scurries for cover.

RESPONDENT: Didn’t Nixon say something like this about General Giap as Saigon was being evacuated? The tactic is called ‘declaring victory’ and it’s taught in Face Saving 101.

RICHARD: Am I to understand that when a person who engages me in an irrelevancy to the thread and fails to match their rhetoric with substance, when I agree to digress from the topic, then fancies themselves as being successful ... and some kind of latter-day communist military commander into the bargain?

And not only that ... then attempts to cover their ineptitude with bombast and blather?

*

RICHARD: Oh well ... c’est la vie, I guess.

RESPONDENT: Guess to your heart’s content!

RICHARD: If you will not engage in discussion, on a topic that you introduced, then I have no other choice but to guess. If you will not converse in a reasoned and sensible way, then what do you expect of the other?

Mind reading?

*

RESPONDENT: One is reminded of nothing so much as ‘The Black Knight’ from ‘Monty Python and The Holy Grail’, limblessly challenging his perceived opponent while obviously unable to mount even a semblance of a pursuit.

RICHARD: Hmm ... methinks thou doest protest too much. What was that you were saying (above) about ‘saving face’?

RESPONDENT: See ‘declaring victory’, above.

RICHARD: You do not seem to ‘get it’ do you? This is a Mailing List purportedly set up to investigate the appalling mess that is the human condition ... and when someone presents an opportunity for you to explore (or at least re-examine your assumptions) you not only throw in the towel but seek to convince the other that it is they who are lacking the fortitude to continue and not you.

You are standing on very shaky ground.

*

RESPONDENT: What a waste of a first-rate vocabulary.

RICHARD: No ... nothing is wasted. From this day forward you will never again be able think of compassion without also thinking ‘pathos in common’ ... for I do have my ways and means of getting a fact established.

RESPONDENT: There was no dispute on the etymological fact, only on its relevance.

RICHARD: Yet you will not investigate further ... you are so thoroughly convinced that your declaration is ‘set in concrete correct’ that you attempt to browbeat the other into complying with your conclusion with pathetic attempts at ridicule (attempts like ‘one is reminded of nothing so much as ‘The Black Knight’ from ‘Monty Python and The Holy Grail’, limblessly challenging his perceived opponent while obviously unable to mount even a semblance of a pursuit’) as if god almighty has spoken.

In fact, your entire demeanour in this exchange, so far, reeks of your ‘intrinsic morality’.

*

RICHARD: Nothing is ever wasted.

RESPONDENT: Luckily, hot air is a recyclable resource.

RICHARD: So I noticed.

October 12 1999:

RESPONDENT: Don’t like being mirrored for a glib bag of hot air, for the facile dilettante you are, do you No. 23? The merest correction of fact sends you into paroxysms of clichéd bigotry. The venom of your largely feigned fury is matched only by the vacuousness of your rhetoric. You’re a shorter, yellower edition of Richard with a better feel for the colloquial and sans either the gumption or the eloquence to come out and say just what it is you’re selling. <SNIP>

RICHARD: It would appear that what you have reduced yourself to (since you back away from reasoned dialogue) is impotently sniping away at me from the side-lines. Then again ... maybe this is a classic example of the shortcomings of karuna.

In which case nothing more needs to be said.

October 12 1999:

RESPONDENT: Don’t like being mirrored for a glib bag of hot air, for the facile dilettante you are, do you No. 23? The merest correction of fact sends you into paroxysms of clichéd bigotry. The venom of your largely feigned fury is matched only by the vacuousness of your rhetoric. You’re a shorter, yellower edition of Richard with a better feel for the colloquial and sans either the gumption or the eloquence to come out and say just what it is you’re selling. <SNIP>

RICHARD: It would appear that what you have reduced yourself to (since you back away from reasoned dialogue) ...

RESPONDENT: Whenever the limitations of ‘reasoned dialogue’ become apparent that is the only reasonable thing to do.

RICHARD: A reasoned dialogue has no limitations ... unless you are of that school of thought that says, with finality: ‘The Truth cannot be known’. Thus you shut the door on investigation and uncovering; upon exploration and discovery. And a closed door perpetuates all the wars and murders and rapes and tortures and domestic violence and child abuse and suicides forever and a day.

*

RICHARD: ... [what you have reduced yourself to] is impotently sniping away at me from the side-lines.

RESPONDENT: Actually, by comparison you are quite forthright and my comment amounted to praise, albeit faint. I’m sorry you took it as ‘sniping’.

RICHARD: Seeing that you were stating loud and clear that the person you were corresponding with was a ‘shorter, yellower edition of Richard’ because, in your opinion, he was a ‘facile dilettante’ and ‘a glib bag of hot air’ full of ‘clichéd bigotry’ and ‘vacuousness of rhetoric’ then in no way can I see it as ‘amounting to praise’ ... albeit ‘faint praise’. And as you purport to be an editor, who must have some idea how a sentence is structured within a paragraph, you do not fool me with this dissimulation ... given that, according to you in past monologues, what I am ‘quite forthright’ with is ‘sophomoric palaver’ and ‘pompous prose’ and so on.

You simply make yourself look more and more silly with each post.

*

RICHARD: Then again ... maybe this is a classic example of the shortcomings of karuna.

RESPONDENT: Speculate to your heart’s content.

RICHARD: Yet it was yourself who lectured me not so long ago upon the ‘irrelevance’ of Latin and Greek based taxonomy – and insisted that your ‘compassion’ was of the Buddhist model – so I am not ‘speculating to my heart’s content’ but following your instructions. Be that as it may, seeing as how you will not engage in reasoned discussion about your assumptions, you leave me with no alternative but to work out what motivates you from the evidence of your modus operandi.

And it is chock-full of shortcomings.

*

RICHARD: In which case nothing more needs to be said.

RESPONDENT: On this I can agree, regardless of ‘which case’ is involved.

RICHARD: But you did say more ... so your ‘agreement’ is worthless as well.

October 13 1999:

RESPONDENT: Don’t like being mirrored for a glib bag of hot air, for the facile dilettante you are, do you No. 23? The merest correction of fact sends you into paroxysms of clichéd bigotry. The venom of your largely feigned fury is matched only by the vacuousness of your rhetoric. You’re a shorter, yellower edition of Richard with a better feel for the colloquial and sans either the gumption or the eloquence to come out and say just what it is you’re selling. <SNIP>

RICHARD: It would appear that what you have reduced yourself to (since you back away from reasoned dialogue) ...

RESPONDENT: Whenever the limitations of ‘reasoned dialogue’ become apparent that is the only reasonable thing to do.

RICHARD: A reasoned dialogue has no limitations ... unless you are of that school of thought that says, with finality: ‘The Truth cannot be known’.

RESPONDENT: I am of no ‘school’ whatsoever.

RICHARD: I used the ‘school of thought’ phrase as an expression and was not implying that you subscribed to a particular ‘school’ at all. I meant mysticism in general ... a libertarian ‘all paths lead to the same ‘Ineffable Unknowable Truth’’ approach.

RESPONDENT: The truth can be perceived and embodied, but a million years of ‘reasoned dialogue’ will not bring it to you or you to it.

RICHARD: Then why are you (and others for that matter) on this Mailing List? Whenever anyone comes close to actually discussing something of import ... out comes this ‘cannot be known; cannot be spoken’ put-down.

RESPONDENT: That which cannot be expressed cannot be remembered and thus does not qualify as knowledge, which is merely stored data

RICHARD: If I may point out? Whether you belong to any school or not is now beside the point, for you are clearly saying that it cannot be known and it cannot be spoken either. Which is pretty well what all the ‘schools’ say anyway.

RESPONDENT: No ‘school’ can teach this, one has to take ‘reasoned dialogue’ (or whatever ilk of thought one has fashioned into an idol) out to the end of its tether and observe its inevitable and utter failure.

RICHARD: In other words: ‘thought must stop for the Other to be’ or ‘a Transmission outside of the Scriptures’ and so on. Hence your dogmatic refusal to investigate and uncover; to explore and discover.

Yet a reasoned dialogue has no limitations ... except when you are saying, with finality: ‘The Truth cannot be known: cannot be spoken’.

*

RICHARD: Thus you shut the door on investigation and uncovering; upon exploration and discovery.

RESPONDENT: Been there, done that.

RICHARD: Oh, how quickly you say that. Okay ... where have you been and what have you done?

RESPONDENT: If there is to be ‘exploration and discovery’ in dialogue, it will be with someone who demonstrates the requisite insight into the human condition.

RICHARD: As the ‘requisite insight’ amounts dutifully believing that ‘The Truth cannot be known’ and ‘The Truth cannot be spoken’ then no wonder you will not enter into a reasoned discussion with me. And this makes it abundantly clear why you have reduced yourself to impotently sniping away at me from the side-lines.

You have nothing else to say.

*

RICHARD: And a closed door perpetuates all the wars and murders and rapes and tortures and domestic violence and child abuse and suicides forever and a day.

RESPONDENT: The door is utterly open, even to hot air, there is simply no compulsion to add to it.

RICHARD: Good ... will you explain to me, then, this outstanding difference you claim lies between the affective experience that the Latin and/or Greek based word for the sublimated and transcended personal sorrow (Compassion) refers to and the affective experience that the Sanskrit and/or Pali word for the sublimated and transcended personal sorrow (Karuna) refers to?

*

RICHARD: ... [what you have reduced yourself to] is impotently sniping away at me from the side-lines.

RESPONDENT: Actually, by comparison you are quite forthright and my comment amounted to praise, albeit faint. I’m sorry you took it as ‘sniping’.

RICHARD: Seeing that you were stating loud and clear that the person you were corresponding with was a ‘shorter, yellower edition of Richard’ because, in your opinion, he was a ‘facile dilettante’ and ‘a glib bag of hot air’ full of ‘clichéd bigotry’ and ‘vacuousness of rhetoric’ then in no way can I see it as ‘amounting to praise’ ... albeit ‘faint praise’. And as you purport to be an editor, who must have some idea how a sentence is structured within a paragraph, you do not fool me with this dissimulation ... given that, according to you in past monologues, what I am ‘quite forthright’ with is ‘sophomoric palaver’ and ‘pompous prose’ and so on.

RESPONDENT: Although neither of you have anything of substance or interest to say, I find you more respectable in that you come out and state your case ...

RICHARD: Why are you so glibly avoiding the issue? You stated, loud and clear that the person you were corresponding with was a ‘shorter, yellower edition of Richard’ because, in your opinion, he was a ‘facile dilettante’ and ‘a glib bag of hot air’ full of ‘clichéd bigotry’ and ‘vacuousness of rhetoric’ and I bring it to your attention that in no way can I see it as ‘amounting to praise’ – albeit ‘faint praise’ – and what do you do? You still suffer from the delusion that you are honouring me. Why not just look at what you write for this once – actually read your own writing – and see for yourself what you are doing.

RESPONDENT: ... you actually claim to have the key to peace for our species in the form of your personal perceptual state.

RICHARD: Yep ... I provide substance to the words that I write, and can back any statement I make with a reasoned, sensible and practical discussion. I can (and do) provide quotes to demonstrate the validity of my observations in the context of current and past human experience ... and can even point to the empirical evidence being provided by today’s neuro-science that makes the ‘ancient wisdom’ that you (and others) espouse redundant.

You see, I opened the door to further investigation and exploration.

RESPONDENT: No. 23 is one of the more skilled posters on this list and as far as I’m concerned you ought to be honoured to be considered in the same sentence with him.

RICHARD: How on earth is it that I ‘ought to be honoured’ by comparison with someone who, in your opinion, is a ‘facile dilettante’ and ‘a glib bag of hot air’ full of ‘clichéd bigotry’ and ‘vacuousness of rhetoric’? Are you for real?

RESPONDENT: If you actually take umbrage at any of this ...

RICHARD: As I do not ‘take umbrage at any of this’ I will treat it as the red-herring that it is ... and also dispense with your erroneous conclusions that follow – drawn from this false premise – in a like manner.

RESPONDENT: ... that says a good deal more about your purported transcendence of the notions of ‘ego’ and/or ‘soul’ than it does of my observations concerning your prose.

RICHARD: As I have never, ever said that I have ‘transcended’ anything (and repeatedly point to transcendence as being a band-aid solution applied from within the human condition) then for all of your huff and puff (further above) about having ‘been there; done that’ it is patently clear that you have not.

This is what I meant by ‘shutting the door’.

RESPONDENT: Why is my view of you of any concern at all, given your supposedly thoroughly transcendent consciousness?

RICHARD: You see? Again you show your limitations by your use of ‘thoroughly transcendent consciousness’ ... which shows that all your ridicule of me is based on ignorance. It would appear that you have not read what I write as this issue of transcendence is central to what I have to say. Therefore, all your fulminations (such as ‘empty rhetoric’ and ‘sophomoric palaver’ and ‘pompous prose’ and so on) are based on not actually reading what Richard has to say.

I will ask you once more: Where have you been? What have you done?

*

RICHARD: You simply make yourself look more and more silly with each post.

RESPONDENT: Opinion noted.

RICHARD: Your notebook must be bulging by now ... seeing that this is your stock-standard non-response whenever someone comes close to correctly questioning your ‘(ass)umptions[tm]’ about yourself.

*

RICHARD: Then again ... maybe this is a classic example of the shortcomings of karuna.

RESPONDENT: Speculate to your heart’s content.

RICHARD: Yet it was yourself who lectured me not so long ago upon the ‘irrelevance’ of Latin and Greek based taxonomy – and insisted that your ‘compassion’ was of the Buddhist model – so I am not ‘speculating to my heart’s content’ but following your instructions. Be that as it may, seeing as how you will not engage in reasoned discussion about your assumptions, you leave me with no alternative but to work out what motivates you from the evidence of your modus operandi. And it is chock-full of shortcomings.

RESPONDENT: As I stated previously, speculate to your heart’s content.

RICHARD: Do you see? Although you say ‘the door is utterly open’ it is not. What makes you dismiss something so pertinent in such a cavalier manner?

*

RICHARD: In which case nothing more needs to be said.

RESPONDENT: On this I can agree, regardless of ‘which case’ is involved.

RICHARD: But you did say more ... so your ‘agreement’ is worthless as well.

RESPONDENT: I’ll let this puddle-shallow one-upmanship speak for itself.

RICHARD: I can assure you that I am not interested in anything so pathetic as ‘one-upmanship’ ... I am vitally interested in peace on earth. I actually meant what I said: I was pointing out the shortcomings of what you fondly imagine to be a valuable contribution to what this Mailing List is purportedly set up for. To wit: to investigate into the mess that is the human condition. You bought into a discussion I was having with another correspondent to give me a lecture on compassion ... and steadfastly refuse to discuss whether what you say is valid. Vis.: [Respondent]: ‘My only objective was to point out the utter and equally self-serving irrelevance of the English etymology of the word ‘compassion’. Beyond that I no interest in further correspondence’. [endquote]. Yet, as I said (above) you did say more ... and more of the same ‘I ain’t gunna discuss it with you’ attitude that you take. And why do you have this attitude? Simple: Richard does not believe in what you believe. Vis.: [Respondent]: ‘If there is to be ‘exploration and discovery’ in dialogue, it will be with someone who demonstrates the requisite insight into the human condition’. [endquote].

Consequently, instead of exploring and uncovering, investigating and discovering you have reduced yourself to impotently sniping away at me from the sidelines.

RESPONDENT: You can do anything you please with my agreement, including labelling it as ‘worthless’ or flushing it down the loo.

RICHARD: I did not merely ‘label’ it as worthless for it was (and still is) worthless ... as an easily observable fact. And it is such a cheap undergraduate shot (to classify someone’s observations as mere ‘labelling’) that I wonder at you falling for it ... what with you being such a self-appointed expert on what ‘empty rhetoric’ looks like and all. Let me put it simply: for all of your faith in the ‘intrinsic embodied law’ your precious Buddhist model of compassion has not brought about peace on earth for all of its (supposed) 2,500 year existence.

Do you wish to find out why?

June 15 2001:

RESPONDENT No. 19: K’s use of the phrase ‘emptying the content of consciousness’ means emptying that vessel which will again be awareness – ‘awareness’ being that ‘which is’, which is a perceptual (living) state – meditation. K used words in an attempt to depict a state of being – a moving thing. That in itself is extremely difficult, but he did it in hundreds of different ways; so that if one didn’t understand it one way, perhaps one could understand it in another way. That has been a cause for many to see contradiction in his teaching. Oh, the patience he had: infinite.

RESPONDENT: Let’s not fawn quite so eagerly over the old man. As per several who had personal contact with him, he really wasn’t all that patient a fellow and was known to complain in private about people he treated collegially in public. The phrase ‘emptying the content of consciousness’ is also somewhat of a conundrum what taken in the context of ‘the observer is the observed,’ which points toward ‘consciousness’ and its ‘content’ as one and the same. What then remains of ‘consciousness’ given the proposed ‘emptying?’

RICHARD: What then remains is ‘a fellow’ who ‘really wasn’t all that patient and was known to complain in private about people he treated collegially in public’.

October 19 2001:

RESPONDENT No. 19: Surely, you jest. LOL.

RESPONDENT No. 33: No jest grandma. Please stop peddling Transformation-whore-house ware on this forum.

RESPONDENT: Why would she do that? Other people – e.g. Richard – are peddling their own ideas of what comprises transformation here without any advice to ‘stop’ from No. 33, why pick on ‘grandma?’

RICHARD: If I may point out? I am not peddling my own ‘ideas’ of what comprises ‘transformation’ ... I can and do provide annotated quotes from accredited sources when discussing such a topic. And, generally speaking, I quote the words of acknowledged enlightened beings (Mr. Jiddu Krishnamurti, Mr. Gotama the Sakyan and so on) so the words are drawn from their own experience and are not necessarily their ‘ideas’ either.

Plus I draw upon eleven years of a then daily experiencing of such a ‘transformation’ ... again not ‘ideas’.

RESPONDENT: Why concern yourself with it at all, given that this is an unmoderated forum where all manner of outright off-topic stuff is posted virtually every day?

RICHARD: I would be interested to see how you could demonstrate and thus substantiate that I post ‘outright off-topic stuff’ ... here is the topic according to the List Owner:

• [quote]: Welcome! ... Purpose Of The List: Listening-l is a forum for people to discuss and investigate the teachings of Jiddu Krishnamurti in relation to their daily problems and their understanding of life. Krishnamurti (1895-1986) is known as a world teacher who rejected organizations, religions and beliefs. He held numerous talks and conversations the world over and wrote many books, investigating what meaning being human has, the nature of the self, delving into love, religion, belief, relationship, death, thought, time, fear, envy, meditation, beauty etc. Everybody is welcome to the list who has a serious interest in deeply questioning him/herself and the world we live in. It is not necessary to be familiar with Krishnamurti’s teachings, although these teachings will probably prove of interest to anyone who is open to fundamental change and ready to investigate the fundamental questions, as well as their own selves. This list is unmoderated. (Listening-L Mailing List Introduction [V2.0.2/27 Jan 97]).

I do not see the word ‘transformation’ anywhere at all in the clearly articulated ‘Purpose Of The List’ which I received when I subscribed ... only ‘fundamental change’. And the on-going experiencing that I peddle virtually ever day on this Mailing List, which I call an actual freedom from the human condition, is the direct result of a fundamental change by any criteria.

And I certainly [quote] ‘discuss and investigate the teachings of Jiddu Krishnamurti’ [endquote] quite consistently.

October 19 2001:

RESPONDENT No. 19: Surely, you jest. LOL.

RESPONDENT No. 33: No jest grandma. Please stop peddling Transformation-whore-house ware on this forum.

RESPONDENT: Why would she do that? Other people – e.g. Richard – are peddling their own ideas of what comprises transformation here without any advice to ‘stop’ from No. 33, why pick on ‘grandma?’

RICHARD: If I may point out? I am not peddling my own ‘ideas’ of what comprises ‘transformation’ ... I can and do provide annotated quotes from accredited sources when discussing such a topic. And, generally speaking, I quote the words of acknowledged enlightened beings (Mr. Jiddu Krishnamurti, Mr. Gotama the Sakyan and so on) so the words are drawn from their own experience and are not necessarily their ‘ideas’ either. Plus I draw upon eleven years of a then daily experiencing of such a ‘transformation’ ... again not ‘ideas’.

RESPONDENT: Nicely worded try, Richard ...

RICHARD: It is not a ‘try’ (be it ‘nicely worded’ or not) ... I am entirely sincere and what I wrote above is factual.

RESPONDENT: ... but as long as we are communicating in words, what we express is indistinguishable from ideas ...

RICHARD: You would be better off speaking for yourself ... what I communicate in words is indeed distinguishable from ‘ideas’ (for those who read with both eyes open).

RESPONDENT: ... unless/until there is corroborating experience on the part of the reader indicating otherwise.

RICHARD: Not necessarily. I present a reasoned argument, substantiated by accredited quotes, that can be grasped intelligently without any corresponding experience – which comprehension can certainly clear the way for a corroborating experience – and all done by words (there is no transmission outside of the scriptures needed for an actual freedom from the human condition). Of course those who approach my writing with the pre-conceived conclusion that all words are of necessity ‘ideas’ will only ever see ‘ideas’ ... thus they close the door on any intelligent comprehension and a possible corroborating experience.

Incidentally ... the moment there is a corroborating experience that person is summarily dismissed as a follower.

*

RESPONDENT: I’m sorry you got the impression that I see your posts as off-topic, that was not my intent. I was simply wondering why No. 33 saw fit to admonish No. 19 but was utterly silent about material that was egregiously off-topic.

RICHARD: Yet the only example you gratuitously provided in your preamble was ‘e.g. Richard’.

RESPONDENT: You are not among the culprits in that regard in my opinion.

RICHARD: I am glad that matter has been cleared up then.


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