Richard’s Correspondence on Mailing List ‘B’
with Respondent No. 7
RESPONDENT No. 22: It seems that passions or feelings are just changing phenomenon that seemingly arise and pass away in awareness just as thoughts. To label that ever-changing phenomenon as an instinctual self seems to be the addition of thought.
RESPONDENT: Richard, I agree with the above. To me you are very clear until you get to this instinct part – to me it’s fuzzy. Can you clarify?
RICHARD: I most certainly can ... it is rather simple, actually. But what is required is that one first acknowledges that this physical body and this physical world and this physical universe are actual. Actual as in tangible, corporeal, material, substantial, palpable. It requires that one comes to one’s senses – both figuratively and literally – and cease trying to understand life, the universe and what it is to be a human being through religious or spiritual eyes. This is not a metaphysical matter ... it is very, very earthy.
Those people, who have dedicated large parts of their waking hours devoted to the particular type of physical research that painstakingly looks into these matters, have located at least four basic emotions in what is variously called the ‘primitive brain’ or the ‘lizard brain’ or the ‘reptilian brain’, which is located at the top of the brain-stem of all sentient creatures. This is regardless of whether the creature has a developed ‘bigger brain’ – like the human cerebral cortex – over the top of it or not. These basic passions are fear and aggression and nurture and desire ... there are more but scientists tend to disagree about matters scientific according to what school or discipline they are working in. After all, they are fallible, ego-ridden and soul-bound human beings trapped in the human condition like everybody else, and are seeking to find a way through all this mess that we humans are born into via the scientific method.
Experiments with electronic probes on either reptiles – not having a bigger brain – or mammals – having a bigger brain – have demonstrated repeatedly that by touching various locatable areas of this ‘reptilian brain’, these emotions can be triggered at command. Thus the hapless animal will switch from trembling fear to rabid desire in the twinkling of an eye ... merely by applying the electrode to another area. Similarly, nurturing can be abruptly replaced by aggression ... again by moving the electrode. This has been demonstrated again and again with predictable results. Thus it is a fact.
So, beginning with a fact and not a premise, we can reliably ascertain that these instincts are what we are born with. Consequently, all sentient beings have, at the very least, a rudimentary sense of ‘self’ and ‘other’ ... and I am not suggesting for a moment that any reptile or mammal has an ‘I’ or a ‘me’. I mean it in the sense that an animal displays behaviour that indicates that there is an awareness of its physical form as being separate from the form of the world about ... which a tree, for example, does not display. This has been tested with apes, for instance, where a mirror is placed in the cage and the ape first looks behind the mirror to find the – apparently there – ‘other’ ape. After a while, an understanding that is observable dawns upon the luckless creature ... and it starts pulling faces at itself and otherwise enjoying the clearly demonstrable fun that comes as a result of the ape knowing that it is its own reflection it is looking at. In other words: a sense of self.
With the hormonal power of the feelings engendered, one feels that a ‘me’ exists ... generally felt to be somewhere in the region of the heart. This is the ‘me’ that I consistently call the soul ... for convenience. This feeling – and feelings are so powerful that they can override intelligence – makes one think that an ‘I’ exists ... generally located in the head. This ‘I’, which for convenience I consistently call the ego, comes to realise that it is the spanner in the works when it comes to the ever-pressing matter of peaceful co-existence with other members of its species. ‘I’, realising (thinking) that ‘I’ am but an illusion in the mind, realise (feel) that ‘my’ true identity is to be found in those prior existent feelings (Zen Buddhism’s ‘Original Face’) and can, by dint of great endeavour, dissolve and become ‘Me’.
This ‘Me’ – usually capitalised to indicate divinity – experiences an oceanic feeling of oneness and unity with all of creation. This gives rise to the popular notion in the East: ‘I am everything and everything is Me’. The West has something similar: ‘I am That I am’ ... but this appellation is reserved for ‘God Men’ who are conveniently long-dead. Prior to the recent influx of Eastern Philosophy, if one realised that ‘I am God’, one would have been institutionalised ... and, to some degree, rightly so. One has stepped out of an illusion, only to wind up living in a delusion. However, the trouble with people who discard the god of Christianity is that they do not realise that by turning to the Eastern spirituality they have effectively jumped out of the frying pan into the fire. Eastern spirituality is religion ... merely in a different form to what people in the West have been raised to believe in. Eastern philosophy sounds so convincing to the Western mind that is desperately looking for answers. The Christian conditioning actually sets up the situation for a thinking person to be susceptible to the esoteric doctrines of the East.
It is sobering to realise that the intelligentsia of the West are eagerly following the East down the slippery slope of striving to attain to a self-seeking Divine Immortality ... to the detriment of life on earth. ‘Centre-less Being’, for example, is simply the Eastern term for ‘God’; thus any wisdom designated ‘Unitary Awareness’ translates easily as ‘God’s Word’ ... in Western terminology. At the end of the line there is always a god of some description, lurking in disguise, wreaking its havoc with its ‘Teachings’. Have you ever been to India to see for yourself the results of what they claim are tens of thousands of years of devotional spiritual living? I have, and it is hideous. If it were not for the appalling suffering engendered it would all be highly amusing.
Of course, it is possible to be actually free of the human condition ... but it is 180 degrees in the opposite direction to the ‘tried and true’.
RESPONDENT No. 20: In that Krishnamurti was presenting not a philosophy but a commentary on living, notes that are helpful and insightful in terms of the way we live, looking at the way Krishnamurti lived is a valid and legitimate approach to understanding what he was saying. But this must be qualified. For this is valid so long as we also understand that there may be a difference between the man Krishnamurti and what was said, that is, the truth or falsity of what is said is independent of whether the man Krishnamurti lived it.
RESPONDENT: For me it sure takes away from the validity of what he said if he didn’t live it.
RICHARD: Indeed. What is the point of listening to ‘Teachings’ if they cannot be lived? Is it not a case of ‘listening’ and ‘listening’ ... and never being able to be living fully because the ‘Teachings’ get in the way of an actual freedom? Can the ‘Teachings’, in fact, be ever lived by anyone? If Mr. Jiddu Krishnamurti cannot live the ‘Teachings’, then who can? Who on earth is living the ‘Teachings’?
It is so great to be living in modern times with the technology of mass communication ... the printed word; the audio-taped word and the video-taped word. People have been getting away with dissimulation for centuries with the inaccuracies of the ‘sacred scriptures’ – being not verbatim transcripts – never being able to be questioned. I am so pleased to be born in this era where we can compare the experience of all peoples from all cultures and all philosophies and from all traditions ... and put the ‘seers’ under public scrutiny. After all, they profess to know the answer.
As far as I am concerned it is a case of ‘put up or shut up’.
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.
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