Actual Freedom – Mailing List ‘B’ Correspondence

Richard’s Correspondence on Mailing List ‘B’

with Respondent No. 22

Some Of The Topics Covered

meaning of life – the challenge of not ‘being’ – Pure Consciousness Experience – apperception – one must die to find out the actuality of what is – the meaning of ‘the observer is the observed’ – what does the soul look like – avoid facing facts and actuality – belief – assumption and misconception – fiddling while Rome burns – belief – grass grows; middle age arrives – confusing Mr. Uppaluri Krishnamurti and Mr. Jiddu Krishnamurti

February 14 1998:

RICHARD (to Respondent No. 24): One can effectively ‘go beyond’ non-duality just as one went beyond duality ... but this time vanishing in ‘my’ entirety. Just as the ego can dissolve, so too can the soul disappear (the second ‘I’ of Mr. Venkataraman Aiyer (aka Ramana) fame). ‘I’ cease to be, period. Then what I am (what, not ‘who’) is this flesh and blood body as an actuality. No sense of identity, no feeling of being whatsoever ... no psychological or psychic entity anywhere at all within or without the body to wreak its havoc. Needless to say, one has no need of aspiring to become a ‘healthy ego’ ... or a healthy soul.

RESPONDENT: Yes. This is close to what I was pointing to. Even though we may have had many insights and experiences and realised this and that, there may be more room for inquiry.

RICHARD: There is most definitely more room for inquiry. To seek and to find; to explore and uncover; to investigate and discover ... these actions are the very stuff of life!

It is the most stimulating adventure of a lifetime to embark upon a voyage into one’s own psyche. Discovering the source of the Nile or climbing Mount Everest – or whatever physical venture – pales into insignificance when compared to the thrill of finding out about life, the universe, and what it is to be a human being.

I am having so much fun ... those middle-aged or elderly people who bemoan their ‘lost youth’ and wish to be twenty-one again leave me astonished. Back then I was – basically – lost, lonely, frightened and confused. Accordingly, I set out on what was to become the most marvellous escapade possible. As soon as I realised that there was nobody stopping me but myself, that realisation became an actualisation and I was free to inquire, to seek, to investigate and to explore. As soon as I realised nobody had to give me permission but myself, that realisation became an actualisation and I was free to encounter, to uncover, to discover and to find the ‘Secret to life’. (Or the ‘Meaning of life’ or the ‘Riddle of existence’, or the ‘Purpose of the universe’ or whatever one’s quest may be called.)

To dare to be me, to be what-I-am as an actuality, rather than the who ‘I’ was, or the who ‘I’ am, or the who ‘I’ will be, calls for an audacity unparalleled in the annals of history ... or one’s personal history, at least.

I would not wish to be twenty-one again, with the orthodox mind-set I had then.

RESPONDENT: It seems there are many subtle misconceptions concerning a ‘me’ or the dualism between those that see versus those that don’t that can be exposed and dropped without adding a new sense of ‘me’ or any other image to replace it.

RICHARD: I would be appreciative if you would care to expand upon the middle part of this paragraph. I have no difficulty in relating to what you mean if it read like this: ‘It seems there are many subtle misconceptions concerning a ‘me’ that can be exposed and dropped without adding a new sense of ‘me’ or any other image to replace it’.

Could you write more on: ‘the dualism between those that see versus those that don’t’?

It is a subject that I, for one, would be interested in pursuing.

February 14 1998:

RESPONDENT: It seems there are many subtle misconceptions concerning a ‘me’ or the dualism between those that see versus those that don’t that can be exposed and dropped without adding a new sense of ‘me’ or any other image to replace it.

RICHARD: Could you write more on: ‘the dualism between those that see versus those that don’t’? It is a subject that I, for one, would be interested in pursuing.

RESPONDENT: The dualism of those who see versus those who don’t seems to rely on the same discriminating activity of thought as that of the division between ‘me’ and not ‘me’.

RICHARD: Okay, I think I get the picture now. One has, at various moments throughout one’s life, experiences wherein ‘I’ temporarily cease to be. We can call this experience being: not ‘me’. Then the moment is over and one reverts to being ‘me’ again, only now with a memory of being not ‘me’. Thus there is a division (separation?) between ‘me’ (which is how one is now) and not ‘me’ (which is how one was then). Is this correct so far? You then say there is the same division (separation?) between those who see and those who do not see. Then you say that this dualism seems to rely upon the same discriminating activity of thought as operates between ‘me’ and the memory of the experience of not ‘me’. If I have misunderstood you, then what follows is probably not applicable.

Is it actually the discriminating activity of thought that is at fault ... or is it the judgemental and condemning nature of the ‘thinker’, which is ‘me’? I ask this question sincerely, because the activity of thought itself is getting such a bad press. Thought is necessary – one can not operate and function in the world of people, things and events without thinking. And to think is to appraise – which is to discriminate, distinguish and differentiate. This is simply a fact, and anyone who proposes otherwise is believing a myth that has somehow been propagated down through the centuries about enlightened persons.

For sure one can stop thought – through meditation techniques; through profound contemplation; through pondering a koan; through fervent worship of a revered object; through following a thought right through to its end or even, spontaneously, at the viewing of a vista of great beauty. Without thought, one is in a state of wordless wonder ... and there is no discrimination. However, the object of stopping thought is not to produce a permanent thoughtless state of wordless wonder – it is aimed at stopping the ‘thinker’, at dissolving ‘me’. (The logic being: If thought stops then the ‘thinker’ also stops). Any such stoppage of thought is temporary, for thought invariably recommences ... as it must. Thus, when one reverts back to being ‘me’, thought cops the blame for being discriminating. This condemnation is based upon the above misunderstanding.

In a permanent condition of being able to live life without ‘me’, the ‘thinker’, there is no on-going state of wordless wonder (that is but a side-effect of thought stopping). One lives in a condition of perfection and purity wherein thought operates of its own accord ... and without ‘me’ to do the thinking, there is no judgemental condemning. Then, is there a division between the one who sees and the one who does not see? There is not ... there is no dualism and there can never be, for there is no ‘me’ in the one who does see to be dualistic. For sure, there is a division, a dualism, between the one who does not see and the one who does ... but that is the same as the division between ‘me’ and the memory of not ‘me’. In the temporary experience of not ‘me’, there was no dualism, no division, between not ‘me’ and ‘me’ ... for the same reason: ‘me’ did not exist then.

Is it not obvious that it is the ‘thinker’ that is the spanner in the works ... and not thought? Matter-of-fact thought (seeing the obvious) is an essential precursor to being able to be free enough to activate any realisation.

RESPONDENT: We can glimpse or think about how the ‘me’ is but a dualistic notion, but still see a distinction between a ‘me’ that knows this as opposed to a ‘me’ that doesn’t. This is a manifestation of the very misconception that was supposedly realised.

RICHARD: ‘Supposedly’? I think not. Let us try this for size: The ‘me’ that knows that ‘me’ is but a dualistic notion (as opposed to a ‘me’ that does not) is still a ‘me’, nevertheless. Maybe a knowledgeable ‘me’ but still a ‘me’. When ‘I’ think about ‘me’ being a dualistic notion, ‘I’ am the ‘me’ that is doing this thinking about ‘me’ being a dualistic notion. It is like trying to imagine not being ... it is impossible. ‘I’ can never know the condition of not ‘me’ ... and ‘I’ am well advised to give up on trying to know it and start living it! One can glimpse it as an actuality in an insight, but to think about it (conceptualise) in a non-conceptualising way is doomed from the start, for the ‘thinker’, the ‘me’, is in there doing the thinking. So, although it is ‘a manifestation of the very misconception that was [deleted] realised’ , it is inevitable. Please, do not give yourself stick for conceptualising the realisation by saying ‘supposedly’ . Such conceptualising is unavoidable, given the nature of ‘me’.

Instead, one can thank the lucky stars for having had a glimpse of (an insight into) the condition of not ‘me’, and get on with the business of unravelling one’s ‘self’ by applying matter-of-fact thought to the challenge of not ‘being’. For one has a definite goal, born out of one’s own experiential seeing of it, to aim for. It is not a theoretical goal; it is not something one has read about in a book; it is not something someone else has told one about. It is the goal of one’s own insight.

The insight is a benefaction.

February 15 1998:

RESPONDENT: It seems there are many subtle misconceptions concerning a ‘me’ or the dualism between those that see versus those that don’t that can be exposed and dropped without adding a new sense of ‘me’ or any other image to replace it.

RICHARD: Could you write more on: ‘the dualism between those that see versus those that don’t’? It is a subject that I, for one, would be interested in pursuing.

RESPONDENT: The dualism of those who see versus those who don’t seems to rely on the same discriminating activity of thought as that of the division between ‘me’ and not ‘me’. Life is divided into self/other, me/not me, seers/non-seers by thought. We cannot experience being ‘not me’. Thought imputes a ‘me’ to have an experience. By discrimination we create the notion of a ‘thinker’ or a ‘me’. There is no fault or judgement. There is apparent division and seers/non-seers and selves/others by virtue of thought, but ultimately they have no inherently real existence. When thought or discrimination stops and it is observed that the ‘me’ ends, there is no need to hold on to a state of non-thought, but to see that the ‘me’ is merely an appearance imputed by thought. If that is clear, there is no need to make thought wrong or to stop it. Seeing the dependence of a ‘me’ on thought it is clear that it never has really existed other than as an appearance. Thought imputes the notion of a ‘thinker’, so a ‘thinker’ cannot be responsible for anything. I don’t see this ‘me’ that gets ‘on with the business of unravelling one’s self or a ‘me’ that ‘knows the a ‘me’ is a dualistic notion’. That sense of a ‘me’ seems to be imputed by thought. Who is it that glimpses a condition of not me and has a goal?

RICHARD: Where you say ‘we cannot experience being ‘not me’, I wonder what you mean. There are many, many instances of people experiencing being ‘not me’. They are called ‘Pure Consciousness Experiences’ (PCE’s) and occur in what is known as a ‘Peak Experience’. What stands out in a PCE is that there is, in fact, no ‘me’ anywhere at all – either inside the body or out of it – to be having the experience. It is this sensate body experiencing itself ... and the term ‘this body’ includes this physical brain perceiving. There is even a name for this ‘me-less’ thought: Apperception. With apperception, the brain is able to perceive itself ... not ‘I’ perceiving ‘my’ brain thinking, as is normal, but awareness happening of its own accord. All this is well-documented.

You ask: ‘who is it that glimpses a condition of ‘not me’ and has a goal?’ It is me as I actually am – this flesh and blood body just brimming with sense organs. When one glimpses what one is (‘what’ not ‘who’) it is these sense organs in operation that does the glimpsing: this seeing is me, this hearing is me, this tasting is me, this touching is me, this smelling is me, and this thinking is me. Whereas ‘I’, the identity, am inside the body: looking out through ‘my’ eyes as if looking out through a window, listening through ‘my’ ears as if they were microphones, tasting through ‘my’ tongue, touching through ‘my’ skin, smelling through ‘my’ nose, and thinking through ‘my’ brain. Of course ‘I’ must feel isolated, alienated, alone and lonely, for ‘I’ am cut off from the magnificence of the world as-it-is (the actual world) by ‘my’ very presence.

All this can be ascertained from a PCE (which everybody has had at least once in their life but, generally speaking, have forgotten about). After the PCE is over, and one reverts back to normal, it is ‘I’ who has the goal. Then one embarks upon the adventure of a life-time.

It seems that you are saying that thought, imputing a ‘me’, creates division, duality. So, what is the nature of this thought? You say it is the discriminating activity of thought, yet to discriminate – which is to appraise, distinguish and differentiate – is to think correctly. How else would one operate and function in the world of people, things and events without discrimination? Therefore, it can not be by discriminating thought that the ‘thinker’ or a ‘me’ is created.

Is it the believing activity of thought that creates the ‘me’? The action of believing is to emotionally imagine something to be real that is not actual. A belief is an emotion-backed thought, which would explain why there is not only a ‘thinker’, but a ‘feeler’ as well, in this ‘me’.

February 15 1998:

RICHARD: It seems that you are saying that thought, imputing a ‘me’, creates division, duality. So, what is the nature of this thought? You say it is the discriminating activity of thought, yet to discriminate – which is to appraise, distinguish and differentiate – is to think correctly. How else would one operate and function in the world of people, things and events without discrimination? Therefore, it can not be by discriminating thought that the ‘thinker’ or a ‘me’ is created. Is it the believing activity of thought that creates the ‘me’? The action of believing is to emotionally imagine something to be real that is not actual. A belief is an emotion-backed thought, which would explain why there is not only a ‘thinker’, but a ‘feeler’ as well, in this ‘me’.

RESPONDENT: I did not say we should not discriminate.

RICHARD: You may not have explicitly said that we should not discriminate, yet it is implied in your inculpation of the discriminating activity of thought. Vis.:

• [Respondent] The dualism of those who see versus those who don’t seems to rely on the same discriminating activity of thought as that of the division between ‘me’ and not ‘me’.
• [Respondent] When ... discrimination stops ... it is observed that the ‘me’ ends.
• [Respondent] By discrimination we create the notion of a ‘thinker’ or a ‘me’.

However, are we in agreement now that it is not the discriminating activity of thought that creates the ‘me’ ... or not?

RESPONDENT: If a ‘thinker’ or a ‘me’ is not a product of thought, then what is it?

RICHARD: Is it the believing activity of thought that creates the ‘me’? The action of believing is to emotionally imagine something to be real that is not actual. A belief is an emotion-backed thought, which would explain why there is not only a ‘thinker’, but a ‘feeler’ as well, in this ‘me’.

RESPONDENT: Is it observable? How do know of its existence?

RICHARD: Yes, it is observable. We know of its existence in several ways ... we all see it, albeit superficially, when we say: ‘What an egotistical person!’.

However, to observe its fundamental existence, it is essential to recall a PCE (which we have all had at least once in our life but, generally speaking, have forgotten about) wherein it is patently obvious that there has been a ‘me’ trying to run the show all along.

RESPONDENT: I was interested in clarifying if there really is a ‘me’ that has glimpses or is that just another concept added. Do body sensations glimpse or are they merely part of the passing scenery?

RICHARD: No, it is not ‘me’ who has glimpses. It is this flesh and blood body that consciously experiences the absence of the insidious and pernicious ‘me’ during the PCE.

RESPONDENT: Out of a context of experiencer separate from the experience it appears that we can experience ‘not me’. But, as you seem to agree, there is no way for us to experience it.

RICHARD: No, I am not agreeing that there is ‘no way for us to experience it’ . We can – and we do – experience ‘not me’ ... as in a PCE, which was explained above and in previous posts.

RESPONDENT: There is no experiencer separate from experience.

RICHARD: The experiencer is indeed separate from experience ... that is the whole problem. This is the cause of the perception that one is separate ... causing all kinds of frenetic activity like seeking union with some imagined god to end the pain of separation. Or wanting love. Love is a bridge betwixt this ‘I’ and that ‘I’, creating an illusion of intimacy and appearing to end separation. Love does not end separation. The two ‘I’s’ are still in existence ... albeit in emotional or passionate union.

RESPONDENT: Although there appears to be many arising forms, feelings, thoughts and sensations, do you believe there is some real thinker or me to experience them?

RICHARD: Speaking personally, I can not believe anything. The ability to believe – believing in itself – has vanished out of me. Which brings this discussion back to the believing activity of thought and feelings. You are asking, in effect: Is there some real ‘me’ to experience? Am ‘I’ real?

When one observes oneself in action, ‘I’ seem to be real – very real at times – but am ‘I’ actual? No? Then why do ‘I’ appear to be real? Is it the activity of believing? The action of believing is to emotionally imagine something to be real that is not actual.

Shall we examine the subject of believing?

February 20 1998:

RESPONDENT: There is no implication that we should not discriminate, just seeing the nature of what takes place.

RICHARD: Do you mean just seeing as in a PCE? Otherwise, it is ‘I’ who is doing the ‘just seeing’.

RESPONDENT: That ‘thinker’ or ‘feeler’ is imputed by thought on the basis of ever-changing thoughts and feelings. If there is a belief in a real ‘thinker’ or ‘feeler’ or some real ‘me’, that just another passing thought. Watching thoughts, feelings, and beliefs all come and go as they do, what can be pointed to as some real ‘thinker’?

RICHARD: The ‘I’ who is doing the ‘watching’ ... that is who can be pointed to as some real ‘thinker’. The belief in a real ‘thinker’ and ‘feeler’ is not ‘just another passing thought’. It is emotion-backed imagination at work. ‘I’ passionately believe in ‘my’ existence ... and will defend ‘myself’ to the death if it is deemed necessary. All of ‘my’ instincts – the instinctive drive for biological survival – will come to the fore then, for ‘I’ am confused about ‘my’ presence, linking ‘my’ survival with the body’s physical continuation. Nothing could be further from the truth for ‘I’ play no part in perpetuating physical existence: ‘I’ am not necessary at all. In fact, ‘I’ am a hindrance. With all of ‘my’ beliefs, values, creeds, ethics and other doctrinaire disabilities, ‘I’ am a menace to the body. ‘I’ am ready to die for a cause – and ‘I’ will willingly sacrifice physical existence for a ‘Noble Ideal’.

RESPONDENT: The perception of ‘egotistical persons’ seems to involve the labelling process of thought that imputes a ‘person’ on to the observable activities of an ever-changing body/mind.

RICHARD: It is not merely a labelling process; thought does not just ‘impute a ‘person’ on the observable activities’ ... there is indeed an ego – and a soul – operating in that ‘egotistical person’. Hence the egotistical behaviour ... or whatever another displays.

RESPONDENT: Even those PCE experiences involve thought that imputes a ‘me’ when, in fact, there has been no such thing from the first. That is why action, as if there were such a real ‘me’ always leads to suffering.

RICHARD: No way does thought impute anything in a PCE. Apperception is what operates then, and apperception is patently incapable of imputing anything. In apperception, the ‘imputer’ is noticeably absent. And what a relief that is!

RESPONDENT: Does the body glimpse or are the various body feelings, perceptions, sensations glimpsed? Is the body aware or is the body part of the passing scenery of awareness?

RICHARD: Obviously it is this flesh and blood body glimpsing itself ... if the ‘various body feelings, perceptions and sensations’ are glimpsed, then there is a ‘someone’ in the body to do this glimpsing. The body is indeed aware – aware on its own accord. This ‘me-less’ awareness is called apperception. (The word awareness has become corrupted by spiritual seekers who fondly imagine that by ‘getting out of the head and into the heart’ there is a ‘pure awareness’ happening. There is not. ‘I’ am still in existence – in the heart now – but being quite humble about it all in the hope that no one will notice that an ‘I’ is still there.)

RESPONDENT: The notion of a separate ‘experiencer’ is imputed by thought and never was. That is the problem. Even in brief glimpses of life without thought created division, they are quickly interpreted from a dualistic self/other context. Life prior to thought imputing that separate experiencer, thinker or feeler is undivided. The problem is that thought imputes separation when there is none.

RICHARD: (I want to check on this word ‘impute’. I looked it up in the dictionary just to make sure that I did know its meaning: ‘Falsely attribute’. Is this what you mean by the use of the word?)

The creation of such a persistent and enduring ‘I’ in every single human being born into this world cannot be merely a product of thought alone falsely attributing an ‘I’ where there is none. The roots of this ‘I’ must go deeper than thought’s imputations. What about feelings? The emotions and passions, I mean.

And, after that, what about the instincts?

RESPONDENT: I thought you were saying that you believed in some real thinker or feeler or experiencer. The appearance of a thinker or an experiencer seems to be imputed by thought and is useful perhaps in communication in daily life.

RICHARD: I do not believe in anything ... I see that other people are run by an ‘I’, a ‘me’ ... a self. This ‘self’ is very real to them – and it drives some to the most monstrous behaviour. So, although one knows intellectually that ‘I’, whilst seeming to be real, am not actual, nevertheless this knowledge does not dislodge this supposedly non-existent ‘I’. What to do? It is to no avail to keep repeating something like: ‘‘I’ am not real’, because that ‘I’ persists in ‘being’ here in this body anyway.

And ... the first-person pronoun is useful in communication ... just so long as it refers only to this flesh and blood body being conscious without any psychological or psychic entity lurking about within.

RESPONDENT: Yes. Explore believing.

RICHARD: It seems that we have made a start on exploring the action of believing already (see above). As this post is getting too long, perhaps we can go into it some more in your next post?

February 23 1998:

RESPONDENT: There is no implication that we should not discriminate, just seeing the nature of what takes place.

RICHARD: Do you mean just seeing as in a PCE? Otherwise, it is ‘I’ who is doing the ‘just seeing’.

RESPONDENT: Yes. Seeing has nothing to do with an ‘I’.

RICHARD: Okay, I want to go into this very, very carefully, for it is oh-so-easy for the mind to befool itself. Remember what you said towards the beginning of this thread: ‘The dualism of those who see versus those who don’t seems to rely on the same discriminating activity of thought as that of the division between ‘me’ and not ‘me’’?

Now you are saying: ‘seeing has nothing to do with a ‘me’. Could it be that one has fallen foul of that common spiritual trap of the mind splitting off a segment of itself to form a non-judging watcher? Because then one can rightly say that there is ‘just seeing the nature of what takes place’. If this is so, then one is in a state of detachment ... not freed of the ‘me’. This is an impersonal ‘I’ who simply sees thoughts come and go; who simply sees feelings come and go; who simply sees psychic phenomena come and go ... and does not interfere. From this detached position, an ‘I’ is nowhere to be found ... it is ever-elusive. A detached self is still a self, nevertheless.

I say this because you also said towards the beginning of this thread: ‘We can glimpse or think about how the ‘me’ is but a dualistic notion, but still see a distinction between a ‘me’ that knows this as opposed to a ‘me’ that doesn’t. This is a manifestation of the very misconception that was supposedly realised’.

This is an apt description of ‘The Watcher’.

RESPONDENT: The notion that there is some real ‘I’, or thinker or feeler seems like a belief and if the body/mind is observed carefully cannot be found.

RICHARD: Years ago, as an aid in understanding myself, I would look very carefully at little things I said or wrote – like that ‘slip of the tongue’ phrase – because little things could be very revealing to me of something I was overlooking. What I see above is that where you say ‘[the] thinker or feeler seems like a belief’, you follow it with ‘body/mind’ and not ‘heart/mind’. If, as you say, the ‘I’ ‘seems like a belief’ to you, then the heart must come into the picture. This is because a belief is an emotion-backed thought. Believing itself – the very action of believing – is passionate imagination.

Maybe – just maybe – if you look into your heart you may find ‘me’ lurking there.

RESPONDENT: The notion of an ego and soul also seem to be beliefs that cannot be found if life is carefully observed.

RICHARD: They can not be found if life is merely observed carefully ... if one is that calm, detached observer on the hilltop. Yet when one looks deeply into one’s psyche; when one plumbs the depths of one’s being; when there is profound and sincere intent ... then the ego and soul can be located. They can be seen ... and at that moment of seeing, one is no longer them.

Then what one is – what not ‘who’ – is this flesh and blood body being aware. This awareness – not that spiritual awareness – is called apperception.

(Apperception is the mind’s perception of itself – Oxford Dictionary).

RESPONDENT: You said a PCE reveals a ‘me’ that can end. That is an experience of thought temporarily going into abeyance. I suggested that the whole notion of there being a ‘me’ is false, which does not depend on the absence of thought but on observing thought.

RICHARD: A PCE is not ‘an experience of thought temporarily going into abeyance’ , it is ‘I’ that temporarily abdicates the throne in a PCE. Thought still operates in a PCE ... clear and pure thought, undefiled by a ‘thinker’ and a ‘feeler’. This is one’s native intelligence in operation, and this intelligence is the intelligence of this universe. It is unlimited in its scope; it knows no boundaries; it is infinitude personified.

Whilst the whole notion of there being a ‘me’ is indeed false, nevertheless, this ‘false’ me’s effects are actually experienced in the real world of people, things and events. It is really of no use to merely state that the ‘me’ is false, because its presence shows up in behaviour and moods and so on.

I say that one must acknowledge the obvious ... or else one can not proceed with the dissolution of this pernicious and insidious ‘I’.

RESPONDENT: I don’t think it [this flesh and blood body being self-lessly aware of itself in a PCE] is obvious at all. How can sensation glimpse itself or a form glimpse itself or an eye see the eye? I am not familiar with the term apperception, but that seems true. Awareness of forms, sensations and feelings coming and going without a ‘me’ seems like just what is occurring.

RICHARD: Sensation does not glimpse itself in a PCE; a form does not glimpse itself in a PCE; an eye does not see the eye in a PCE. In a PCE, bodily consciousness is awareness happening of its own accord – there is effortless awareness. There is no longer an ‘I’ inside the body looking out through the eyes as if out of windows. The eyes see for themselves; the ears hear for themselves ... and so on.

The eyes are not separate from the brain ... the eyes are the brain. Think about it: physically, the eyes are the brain protruding itself on stalks!

RESPONDENT: The notion of an ‘I’ that is here seems to be added by thought and cannot be found with close observation.

RICHARD: But not just thought. What about feelings? We are supposedly discussing believing, and believing is passionate imagination ... which is thought and feeling. Maybe this is why you can not find ‘I’ via ‘close observation’?

RESPONDENT: Thought falsely attributes the true existence of a ‘me’.

RICHARD: Once again: what about your feelings?

RESPONDENT: Thought falsely attributes the true existence of separate things, when, in fact, life is basically undivided.

RICHARD: Is life, basically, actually undivided? One must be careful not to fall into that religious and spiritual solution to separation: unity, union, oneness, etcetera. A self, being separate, desires closeness, then togetherness, then oneness. The ultimate game-plan of this oh-so-cunning ‘me’ is to be in a state of union with something metaphysical. This is called ‘Pure Being’, and one experiences oneself – and thus life – as being undivided.

Remember, the whole notion of an undivided life existing somewhere arises from a divided mind and heart. Any state hypothesised from an illusion can only be a delusion.

One must die to find out the actuality of what is.

*

RICHARD: Although one knows intellectually that, whilst seeming to be real ‘I’ am not actual, nevertheless this knowledge does not dislodge this supposedly non-existent ‘I’. What to do? It is to no avail to keep repeating something like: ‘‘I’ am not real’, because that ‘I’ persists in ‘being’ here in this body anyway.

RESPONDENT: That is just another belief. It is trading a belief in a ‘me’ to a not ‘me’. So, instead of encouraging a belief in no ego or no soul, I would ask what makes you believe there is a real ego or soul?

RICHARD: I do not have to believe there is a real or unreal ego and soul – I see proof of their presence in action in the world of people, things and events. All the wars, murders, tortures, rapes and destruction attests to a malicious entity residing in this flesh and blood body. All the sadness, loneliness, grief, depression and suicide gives its mute testimony to the very apparent occupancy of this body by an extremely sorrowful ‘I’.

I appreciate being able to have these discussions.

February 25 1998:

RESPONDENT: There is no implication that we should not discriminate, just seeing the nature of what takes place.

RICHARD: Do you mean just seeing as in a PCE? Otherwise, it is ‘I’ who is doing the ‘just seeing’.

RESPONDENT: Yes. Seeing has nothing to do with an ‘I’.

RICHARD: Okay, I want to go into this very, very carefully, for it is oh-so-easy for the mind to befool itself. Remember what you said towards the beginning of this thread: ‘The dualism of those who see versus those who don’t seems to rely on the same discriminating activity of thought as that of the division between ‘me’ and not ‘me’’? Now you are saying: ‘seeing has nothing to do with a ‘me’. Could it be that one has fallen foul of that common spiritual trap of the mind splitting off a segment of itself to form a non-judging watcher? Because then one can rightly say that there is ‘just seeing the nature of what takes place’. If this is so, then one is in a state of detachment ... not freed of the ‘me’. This is an impersonal ‘I’ who simply sees thoughts come and go; who simply sees feelings come and go; who simply sees psychic phenomena come and go ... and does not interfere. From this detached position, an ‘I’ is nowhere to be found ... it is ever-elusive. A detached self is still a self, nevertheless.

RESPONDENT: Thought creates the notion of a ‘me’ and a ‘not’ me. A ‘me’, a watcher, a detached something could never see this since it is what thought creates. The existence of a ‘me’ or an idea of some detached position is merely imputed by thought, so it can never see or observe anything. That is the meaning of ‘the observer is the observed’.

RICHARD: Is that, in fact, the meaning of ‘the observer is the observed’? This was a very popular topic for many years and became quite a catch phrase during the middle of this century ... and it appears to still carry some weight today. ‘The observer is the observed’ doesn’t actually refer to anything sensible whatsoever, although it is an apparently recondite statement. It can perhaps be taken as a ‘Koan’ to bring one to the limit of dualistic thought, but other than that metaphysical mediation it is of no practical use, as it has no basis in actuality.

It does, however, particularly point to Mr. Jiddu Krishnamurti’s propensity for the popular Eastern esoteric delusion that ‘I am everything and everything is Me’ ... no matter how much he endeavoured to distance himself from it. I would assume – and this is merely an opinion for I am privy to only one person’s every private thought – that this was in order to gain credibility as being somewhere betwixt this Eastern esoteric delusion and the accepted Western exoteric illusion that ‘I am a random, chance event in a mindless universe’.

It may seem that thought, creating the notion of a ‘me’ and a ‘not me’, has divided itself into two parts. The thoughts that are the ‘observer’ or ‘me’ and all the other thoughts which are the ‘observed’ or ‘not me’. This is called being ‘fragmented’ or being ‘divided.

Although it seems that way, thought hasn’t actually divided itself into two parts. The physical body is encumbered with an instinctual entity called ‘I’ which assumes that it is the feeler of feelings and the thinker of thoughts. It is possible to have a ‘pure consciousness experience’ (PCE) in which ‘I’ am not present, temporarily at least. In such an experience it is easily seen that ‘I’ have been standing in the way of a perfect freedom from ‘self’ happening for this bodily organism all along. During the PCE it is a case that thinking happens of its own accord ... and much, much better than when ‘I’ am present. This clear thinking – called apperception – has no problem in discerning the physical distinction between this body and that body or a tree. All the while there is a keen awareness that there is no instinctual ‘I’ as an observer inside the head ... or the heart or anywhere else either inside the body or out of it. This apperceptive awareness happens of itself, effortlessly. Feelings disappear entirely as the absence of the instinctual ‘I’ makes them and their ‘feeler’ redundant. Thus, although there are people, things and events happening, there is no ‘observer’. There is simply an utter freedom to be participating in all that is magically occurring ... and a delightful and sensual participation at that.

So, is there a ‘me’ that thinks or is at the centre of thought, or is there just thought imputing a ‘me’? Is the ‘me’ just an illusion created by the thinking process?

(This is a seminal question and could be at the core of a breakthrough into apperceptive awareness.)

In a normal person in the real world there is indeed a ‘me’ that arrogates the thinking process ... but it arises from the feelings because ‘me’ is, in fact, not an illusion created by the thinking process. It is an illusion created – at root – by the instincts that one is born with. In all sentient beings these instincts have created a sense of ‘self’ and ‘other’. These instincts manifest themselves as emotions, and all the myriad feelings stem from approximately four basic passions, situated in the ‘reptilian brain’, such as fear and aggression and nurture and desire.

So, first there are the passionate instincts that ‘blind nature’ endows us with as a start to life ... and a rather clumsy start at that. These express themselves as emotions inside the heart which give rise to the feeling that there is a ‘feeler’ in there. This feeling creates the illusion that there is a ‘thinker’ inside the brain. The ‘thinker’ then attempts the impossible: To eliminate the ‘I’ by stopping thought, permanently. Of course, thinking recommences as it must. When practiced assiduously, and a rare success ensues, the ‘thinker’ disappears from the head. ‘I’ then identify solely as the ‘feeler’ in the heart. The resultant oceanic feeling of ‘Oneness’ and ‘Unity’ gives rise to the misconception that the separate self has been eliminated.

It has not. ‘I’ still survive, self-satisfied. Now that ‘I’ have made a connection with the ‘other’ via love, ‘I’ feel that there is nothing further to be done – yet it is only that the separation has been bridged. Having made a quantum leap from the head to the heart, there is nothing to stop egomania turning into megalomania. The ‘self’ now manifests itself as ‘The Deathless Self’ existing for all ‘Eternity’. ‘I’ am ‘Unborn and Undying’; ‘Spaceless and Timeless’; ‘Never Beginning and Never Ending’ ... and so on.

It is not thought that imputes a thinker.

It is the passion engendered by the instinctual self in the reptilian brain that remains the real culprit.

February 26 1998:

RICHARD: It is not thought that imputes a thinker. It is the passion engendered by the instinctual self in the reptilian brain that remains the real culprit.

RESPONDENT: Well I guess that simplifies things. What does this instinctual self look like?

RICHARD: You have asked me a similar question before and I let it pass by. [Respondent]: ‘What does the soul look like?’ I might as well respond to both questions now ... as well as what the ego looks like, just to complete the description.

1. The instinctual self looks like fear and aggression and nurture and desire ... which are the only four instincts that researchers are generally able to agree on as being inborn in all sentient creatures. There are other impulses and urges and drives, but their inclusion in the list depends upon which school one subscribes to.
2. The soul looks like Universal Compassion, Love Agapé, Rapturous Bliss, Ineffable Ecstasy, Exalted Euphoria, The Truth, Timelessness, Spacelessness, Immortality, Aloneness, Oneness, Centre-less Being, Unitary Awareness ... and any other phantasmagoria one may care to add to the list ... also dependent upon which discipline one subscribes to.
3. The ego looks like vanity, avarice, arrogance, rapacity, cupidity, pretension, contumeliousness, narcissism, vainglory, haughtiness, contumaciousness ... and a host of other pejorative characteristics that anyone may care to add to the list.

RESPONDENT: By what signs would this self be known to be existing as more than passing phenomenon?

RICHARD: Oh dear ... such a list would be too long for this E-Mail. It literally runs into the tens of thousands. What if we were to start with the 160,000,000 human beings killed in wars in this century alone? You see, we would have to include all the wars, the murders, the tortures, the rapes, the domestic violence, the corruptions, the sadness, the loneliness, the sorrows, the depressions and the suicides ... and all because of a ‘self’ that you say is merely ‘passing phenomenon’.

RESPONDENT: It seems that passions or feelings are just changing phenomenon that seemingly arise and pass away in awareness just as thoughts.

RICHARD: You have used the words ‘seems’ and ‘seemingly’ ... and both in the one sentence. What is conveyed is this: ‘manifest to the senses or mind as real or true on the basis of evidence that may or may not be factually valid; external appearance as distinguished from true character; having an often deceptive or delusive appearance on superficial examination; meaning not actually being what appearance indicates; suggesting appearance to unaided senses that is not or may not be borne out by more rigorous examination or greater knowledge; implying a false impression based on deceptive resemblance or faulty observation, or influenced by emotions that prevent a clear view; implying a character in the thing observed that gives it the appearance, sometimes through intent, of something else and suggesting a discrepancy between an openly declared or naturally implied aim or reason and the true one’.

Are you trying to tell everyone that you do not actually know anything? Because you did the same only recently in a post. [Respondent]: ‘It seems that what arises out of nothingness is only apparently real’. But, I did predict some little while ago that next someone will come trotting out with that tired old maxim about being truly wise only when one can say that one does not know any more.

RESPONDENT: To label that ever-changing phenomenon as an instinctual self seems to be the addition of thought.

RICHARD: I am beginning to consider that there is not only a touch of Mr. Ludwig Wittgenstein’s influence happening here ... there is an indication of something else operating. I did not just ‘label’ mindlessly ... my words accurately describe a reality that the ‘I’ that used to be in this body saw that I needed to be free from. Words in themselves are not a problem, for words are a description of something ... and it is that something that is being lived which is trapping you ... not the words. I know that some people (Post-Modernists, for example) re-arrange words and definitions to suit themselves, but the underlying reality remains the problem. Semantics is only a superficial problem, in spite of those who write profound tomes about it as if it were the problem in itself.

Maybe another person’s post from another Mailing List last year may be able to explicate this syndrome for you:

• [Richard]: All creatures are born with the instinct for survival, which manifests itself as fear and aggression.
• [Respondent]: Wrong. Fear and aggression is a human interpretation of value free behaviour. A lion does his lion thing and we call it aggression.
• [Richard]: Animal behaviour is not ‘value free’. When a lion does its lion thing humans do not just call it aggression ... it is aggression. (Oxford Dictionary: Aggression: ‘The act of beginning a quarrel or war; behaviour intended to injure a person or an animal’). I am sure that you will find that numerous studies have been done that clearly demonstrate that animals are subject to both fear and aggression. I have watched many, many television nature documentaries for this very purpose and have always made sure that I was not being misled by anthropomorphism.
• [Respondent]: Oh, yes. I forgot. Lions write dictionaries. We label behaviour (hence our compulsive need to cite dictionaries). Animals behave. What animals experience when they appear to manifest fear and aggression, humans don’t know. We don’t know what it feels like to be a lion. Whatever behaviour they manifest, however, has served through years and years of evolutionary processes to preserve a specific species. I would venture to guess that the ‘meaning of life’ is to make more life, or to preserve life; so when a lion exhibits ‘fear’ or ‘aggression’ that’s the life force showing through.

People will go to extraordinary lengths to avoid facing facts and actuality.

February 28 1998:

RESPONDENT: 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.

RICHARD: I did not just ‘label’ mindlessly ... my words accurately describe a reality that the ‘I’ that used to be in this body saw that I needed to be free from. Words in themselves are not a problem, for words are a description of something ... and it is that something that is being lived which is trapping you ... not the words. I know that some people (Post-Modernists, for example) re-arrange words and definitions to suit themselves, but the underlying reality remains the problem. Semantics is only a superficial problem, in spite of those who write profound tomes about it as if it were the problem in itself. People will go to extraordinary lengths to avoid facing facts and actuality.

RESPONDENT: You point to the affects of action based on the belief in some real self. That action (under the assumption of a separate self) is always in conflict. Pointing to the affects of misconception does not prove the existence of a real ongoing self.

RICHARD: Okay, you have used three very descriptive words here ... belief, assumption and misconception. I would be the last person to ascribe an actuality to the self; the belief in the real existence of an ego and soul is just that ... a belief. It is indeed a misconception; it is indeed an assumption; it is indeed these things (and there a lot more descriptions we can use ... a notion, an idea, an illusion, a mirage, an image and so on) but describing the cause of the existence of self does not end the self’s continued existence now, does it? We know it is still in existence because of the effects it has in the ‘outside’ world ... like all the wars, the murders, the tortures, the rapes, the domestic violence and the corruptions. And we know it is still in existence because of the effects it has in the ‘inner’ world ... like all the sadness, the loneliness, the sorrows, the depressions and the suicides. Although only appearing to be real, its effect is very, very actual.

I wish to be personal here, in order to elucidate this extremely pertinent point. Do you ever get sad? Do you ever get lonely? Do you ever get sorrowful? Do you ever get depressed? Do you ever get angry? Do you ever get spiteful? Do you ever get envious? Do you ever get hateful? Do you ever get bored? Do you ever get peeved? Do you ever get irritable? Do you ever get anxious? Do you ever get afraid? Do you ever get guilty? Do you ever get resentful? Do you ever get ashamed? Do you ever get apprehensive? Do you ever get embarrassed? Do you ever get distressed? Do you ever get jealous? Do you ever get self-conscious? Do you ever get fearful? Do you ever get aggressive? Do you ever get ... I could go on and on, but do you get the point?

And to make it absolutely clear, I will stress just what the point is: that unless all these effects – and many more – have vanished out of your life forever, then knowing that the self is a belief, an assumption, a misconception has done nothing to dislodge this product of belief, assumption and misconception called a self.

RESPONDENT: You say that there used to be an ‘I’ in this body, but somehow it is gone. Yes?

RICHARD: Yes, it is gone ... and not just ‘somehow’, but with full intent and knowledge of what to do and what was happening. Consequently, I know how to get rid of this very persistent self which you quite rightly say is not real (actual).

RESPONDENT: If, in fact, there was some real self in your body, where did it go and how did it end? Real things don’t just disappear.

RICHARD: How did it end? It was due to my intense conviction that it was imperative that someone evince a final and complete condition that would ‘deliver the goods’ so longed for by humanity for millennia. ‘I’ paid exclusive attention to being alive right here and now only. This type of attention is best known as fascination. Fascination leads to reflective contemplation. This potent combination produces apperception, which happens when the mind becomes aware of itself.

Apperception is an awareness of consciousness. It is not ‘I’ being aware of ‘me’ being conscious; it is the mind’s awareness of itself.

Apperception – a way of seeing that is arrived at by contemplative thought – is when ‘I’ cease thinking ... and thinking takes place of its own accord. Such a mind, being free of the thinker and the feeler – ‘I’ as ego and soul – is capable of immense clarity and purity. All this is born out of pure intent. Pure intent is derived from the PCE experienced during a peak experience, which all humans have had at some stage in their life. A peak experience is when ‘I’ spontaneously cease to ‘be’, temporarily, and this moment is. Everything is seen to be perfect as-it-is. Diligent attentiveness paid to the peak experience gives rise to pure intent. With pure intent running as a ‘golden thread’ through one’s life, contemplation rapidly becomes pure. Pure contemplation is bare awareness – bare of ‘me’ being aware. Apperception happens of itself.

With apperception operating more or less continuously in ‘my’ day-to-day life, ‘I’ find it harder and harder to maintain credibility. ‘I’ am increasingly seen as the usurper, an alien entity inhabiting this body and taking on an identity of its own. Mercilessly exposed in the bright light of awareness – apperception casts no shadows – ‘I’ can no longer find ‘my’ position tenable. ‘I’ can only live in obscuration, where ‘I’ lurk about, creating all sorts of mischief. ‘My’ time is speedily coming to an end, ‘I’ can barely maintain ‘myself’ any longer.

The day finally dawns where the definitive moment of being here, right now, conclusively arrives; something irrevocable takes place and every thing and every body and every event is different, somehow, although the same physically; something immutable occurs and every thing and every body and every event is all-of-a-sudden undeniably actual, in and of itself, as a fact; something irreversible happens and an immaculate perfection and a pristine purity permeates every thing and every body and every event; something has changed forever, although it is as if nothing has happened, except that the entire world is a magical fairytale-like playground full of incredible gladness and a delight which is never-ending.

What a marvellous difference this makes to being alive!

RESPONDENT: If I see a real lake and look closer and closer, there is still a lake. If however, I see a mirage of a lake, the closer I get, its lack of existence is clarified. Likewise, the existence of a real self would be clarified with close exposure. What happens, though, is that no substantial self can ever be found.

RICHARD: This is because you, as self, are the very self that is trying to see the self. Of course you will only find an ever-receding mirage. To put it into language you will be familiar with: You, the seer, are what is wished to be seen. You, the seeker, are that which is being sought.

RESPONDENT: Since there has never been a real ongoing self from the first (only action based on the assumption or belief in one) there is an appearance of something ending when in fact it is exposing and dropping of the beliefs and misconceptions concerning an ongoing self.

RICHARD: Unfortunately it is not such a simple matter as merely exposing and dropping beliefs and misconceptions. I would suggest asking who is doing the exposing and dropping. I would enquire into just who is holding the beliefs and misconceptions concerning an on-going self. ‘I’ cannot drop the belief that ‘I’ exist because ‘I’, the would-be ‘dropper’, am what is to be dropped. Like-wise, ‘I’ the would-be ‘exposer’, am what is to be exposed.

Only apperceptive awareness will do the trick.

March 02 1998:

RICHARD: You have used three very descriptive words here ... belief, assumption and misconception. I would be the last person to ascribe an actuality to the self; the belief in the real existence of an ego and soul is just that ... a belief. It is indeed a misconception; it is indeed an assumption; it is indeed these things (and there a lot more descriptions we can use ... a notion, an idea, an illusion, a mirage, an image and so on) but describing the cause of the existence of self does not end the self’s continued existence now, does it? We know it is still in existence because of the effects it has in the ‘outside’ world ... like all the wars, the murders, the tortures, the rapes, the domestic violence and the corruptions. And we know it is still in existence because of the effects it has in the ‘inner’ world ... like all the sadness, the loneliness, the sorrows, the depressions and the suicides. Although only appearing to be real, its effect is very, very actual.

RESPONDENT: We can see the affects of action from misconception. Unless that misconception is observed as it occurs, suffering continues, as you suggest.

RICHARD: No, I did not suggest that ‘unless that misconception is observed as it occurs, suffering continues’ ... you are the one who is suggesting that. I am saying that it is possible – and it is essential – that the ‘misconceiver’ ends ... and permanently. Why spend the rest of your life having to constantly go about ‘observing that misconception as it occurs’? Is that not only silly, but socially irresponsible into the bargain? For whilst the ‘misconceiver’ lurks within your very human breast, sorrow and malice continue to wreak their havoc. It does no good whatsoever to ‘observe’.

I understand the meaning of that expression: ‘Fiddling while Rome burns’. Do you?

*

RICHARD: I wish to be personal here, in order to elucidate this extremely pertinent point. Do you ever get sad? Do you ever get lonely? Do you ever get sorrowful? Do you ever get depressed? Do you ever get angry? Do you ever get spiteful? Do you ever get envious? Do you ever get hateful? Do you ever get bored? Do you ever get peeved? Do you ever get irritable? Do you ever get anxious? Do you ever get afraid? Do you ever get guilty? Do you ever get resentful? Do you ever get ashamed? Do you ever get apprehensive? Do you ever get embarrassed? Do you ever get distressed? Do you ever get jealous? Do you ever get self-conscious? Do you ever get fearful? Do you ever get aggressive? Do you ever get ... I could go on and on, but do you get the point?

RESPONDENT: The point seems to be that life is viewed through a belief in a ‘you’ that can get angry etc.

RICHARD: No, the point is not that it ‘seems’ (there is that word again) that life is viewed through a belief ... you are that belief. That belief is you. You are not separate from that belief. To paraphrase or plagiarise: ‘The believer is the believed’ ... that is the problem.

*

RICHARD: And to make it absolutely clear, I will stress just what the point is: that unless all these effects – and many more – have vanished out of your life forever, then knowing that the self is a belief, an assumption, a misconception has done nothing to dislodge this product of belief, assumption and misconception called a self.

RESPONDENT: Again this seems to point to a belief in a ‘you’ to which those are occurring. From the first there is no self to get angry or to have anger vanish. The assumption or misconception is that there is such a one. Until that misconception is observed as it occurs in daily life, not just thought about or described, the appearance of egocentric activities goes on.

RICHARD: No, the point is that do you, No. 22, ever experience any of the above list of feelings, emotions and passions? (And the list is by no means exhaustive). Because if you do not, and you can unequivocally declare that you will never, ever experience them again ... then you are free from the Human Condition.

But if you do, and you cannot unequivocally declare that you will never, ever experience them again ... then all your prose is intellectual masturbation.

*

RICHARD: Unfortunately it is not such a simple matter as merely exposing and dropping beliefs and misconceptions. I would suggest asking who is doing the exposing and dropping. I would enquire into just who is holding the beliefs and misconceptions concerning an on-going self. ‘I’ cannot drop the belief that ‘I’ exist because ‘I’, the would-be ‘dropper’, am what is to be dropped. Like-wise, ‘I’ the would-be ‘exposer’, am what is to be exposed. Only apperceptive awareness will do the trick.

RESPONDENT: I did not say dropping was the simple matter that you suggest. I did not suggest an ‘I’ that can hold or drop beliefs. Exposing is giving attention to the concepts as they occur. For example we can give attention to the notion of a ‘you’ that can be angry, an ‘I’ that can drop or hold beliefs. Awareness of those concepts as they arise, clarifies their conceptual nature and allows them to drop on their own.

RICHARD: But would you not wish to live a life wherein these concepts never arise? Therefore you never have to go about ‘clarifying their conceptual nature’ all the time? A life where all these things do not have to be constantly observed and clarified? And when they drop, they only drop until next time, anyway. What a laborious task it is to have to be ever-vigilant.

And all this while the perfect purity of being alive at this moment in time and this place in space is just sitting here – right under your nose – freely available for anyone with the gumption to proceed on into their destiny.

March 10 1998:

RICHARD: The point is not that it ‘seems’ (there is that word again) that life is viewed through a belief ... you are that belief. That belief is you. You are not separate from that belief. To paraphrase or plagiarise: ‘The believer is the believed’ ... that is the problem.

RESPONDENT: A belief is just a belief. A belief doesn’t get angry. Anger arises out of a conflict in beliefs, not ‘you’ that is angry.

RICHARD: Okay, let us say that I will buy the explanation that ‘anger arises out of a conflict in beliefs’ for now. My immediate question is: Who is getting angry?

*

RICHARD: To make it absolutely clear, I will stress just what the point is: that unless all these effects – and many more – have vanished out of your life forever, then knowing that the self is a belief, an assumption, a misconception has done nothing to dislodge this product of belief, assumption and misconception called a self.

RESPONDENT: Again this seems to point to a belief in a ‘you’ to which those are occurring. From the first there is no self to get angry or to have anger vanish. The assumption or misconception is that there is such a one. Until that misconception is observed as it occurs in daily life, not just thought about or described, the appearance of egocentric activities goes on.

RICHARD: No, the point is that do you, No. 22, ever experience any of the above list of feelings, emotions and passions? (And the list is by no means exhaustive). Because if you do not, and you can unequivocally declare that you will never, ever experience them again ... then you are free from the Human Condition. But if you do, and you cannot unequivocally declare that you will never, ever experience them again ... then all your prose is intellectual masturbation.

RESPONDENT: Your belief that there is someone that experiences feelings is a misconception. You have already agreed that such an experiencer is imaginary. The issue is not the scenery, but the context in which it is viewed. If there is a projection of a ‘you’ that is angry as you suggest above, that is a belief in a ‘you’ that can be angry that is being expressed this moment.

RICHARD: Do you ever get angry?

RESPONDENT: Exposing is giving attention to the concepts as they occur. For example we can give attention to the notion of a ‘you’ that can be angry, an ‘I’ that can drop or hold beliefs. Awareness of those concepts as they arise, clarifies their conceptual nature and allows them to drop on their own.

RICHARD: Would you not wish to live a life wherein these concepts never arise? Therefore you never have to go about ‘clarifying their conceptual nature’ all the time? A life where all these things do not have to be constantly observed and clarified? And when they drop, they only drop until next time, anyway. What a laborious task it is to have to be ever-vigilant. And all this while the perfect purity of being alive at this moment in time and this place in space is just sitting here – right under your nose – freely available for anyone with the gumption to proceed on into their destiny.

RESPONDENT: There is no thought of a wish or all the time or next time or laborious task or of a someone that can proceed anywhere. It is just observing what comes up. It is not a goal, path or method. It is just what occurs naturally.

RICHARD: Okay, I give up. It is your life, after all is said and done. May I propose something before I go? It is only a suggestion?

Look up the word ‘alexithymia’.

March 14 1998:

RICHARD (to Respondent No. 19): Spiritual Enlightenment has been around for some thousands of years ... and there is still no peace on earth.

RESPONDENT: Although teachers pointing to the truth have been around, not many are interested in hearing what they say. This lack of interest is not the fault of teachers. We have no interest in exposing our misconceptions to the light of truth and escape in any way possible.

RICHARD: No way do I buy this ... millions of well-meaning followers have diligently put their Teachings into practice, prostrating and belittling themselves like all get-out in a hopeful attempt to live the unliveable. Yet no-one, it seems, dares to question the Teachings themselves; instead the humiliated penitents obligingly blame themselves for failing to achieve release from the human condition. The blame for the continuation of human misery lies squarely in the lap of those inspired people who, although having sufficient courage to proceed into the ‘Unknown’, stopped short of the final goal – the ‘Unknowable’. Bewitched and beguiled by the promise of majesty and mystery, they have led humankind astray. Preaching submission or supplication they keep a benighted humanity in appalling tribulation and distress. The death of the ego is not sufficient: the extinction of the self in its entirety is the essential ingredient for peace and prosperity to reign over all and everyone.

The Divine Beings have been peddling their snake oil for centuries to no avail. Their time has come to either put up or shut up ... how much longer than these thousands of years do peoples need to further test the efficaciousness of their failed Divine Message?

*

RICHARD (to Respondent No. 19): I entered into an ongoing Altered State Of Consciousness on Sunday, the 6th of September 1981, becoming ‘Enlightened’ in the Eastern spiritual sense of the term. I spent the next eleven years endeavouring to discover why it did not work ... why it did not deliver the Peace On Earth it seemed to promise ... and why it was not for everyone. Accordingly I sought to go beyond Spiritual Enlightenment into a condition I had glimpsed on many an occasion during those eleven years. On Friday, the 30th of October 1992, I succeeded and landed in actuality ... as distinct from either ‘reality’ or the ‘Greater Reality’.

RESPONDENT: The notion of an ‘I’ that enters Altered States, becomes enlightened, glimpses or can land in actuality seems like an expression of the same old egocentric framework based on the misconception of some real self that can do those things.

RICHARD: It is simply a matter of convenience to use the first person pronoun: I, my, me ... or even more impersonally ... one. Otherwise the above paragraph would wind up looking like this: ‘This flesh and blood body entered into an ongoing Altered State Of Consciousness on Sunday, the 6th of September 1981, becoming ‘Enlightened’ in the Eastern spiritual sense of the term. This flesh and blood body spent the next eleven years endeavouring to discover why it did not work ... why it did not deliver the Peace On Earth it seemed to promise ... and why it was not for everyone. Accordingly this flesh and blood body sought to go beyond Spiritual Enlightenment into a condition this flesh and blood body had glimpsed on many an occasion during those eleven years. On Friday, the 30th Of October 1992, this flesh and blood body succeeded and landed in actuality ... as distinct from either ‘reality’ or the ‘Greater Reality’.

RESPONDENT: It sounds like there have been a few glimpses beyond the framework of a ‘me’, but those experiences were quickly added to the structure of misconceptions that now obscure life.

RICHARD: It may sound like that to you, I realise, given the way that you experience your own life ... but not everyone thinks like you do. I, for one, do not. When I glimpse something, I go for it – boots and all – and actualise the glimpse so that I am living it in my daily life. I do not make the mistake of imagining that all this appalling animosity and anguish that grips every single human being on this planet is the result of the mind merely imputing an apparently real but seeming self ... and fondly considering that anger, for example, can be overlooked as a ‘misconception’, or part of a ‘structure that can be quickly added to’. Wake up and smell the coffee.

RESPONDENT: Glimpsing from a structure is different than dropping the structure.

RICHARD: The immediate question that springs to mind is who is dropping the structure? And please ... do not tell me that it is the mind merely imputing a ‘me’ ... we have flogged that subject to death. It is male bovine faecal matter and you know it is.

RESPONDENT: No position to view from. No one to enter or leave. No one to land anywhere. Nothing to do and nowhere to go. Yet it is time to go make breakfast.

RICHARD: Ah, yes ... the ancient Japanese art of the Tanka (sort of). Not being a poet myself, I will build upon an associate’s lampooning, for how else can I respond in kind?

Sitting quietly
(Prevaricating)
Doing nothing
(Procrastinating)
Spring comes
(Middle age arrives)
And the grass grows of itself
(The mid-life crisis unfolds)
The delicate sound of lawn-mowers
(The suburban dawning)
Hanging on in quiet desperation ... .

March 15 1998:

RICHARD (to Respondent No. 19): I entered into an on-going Altered State Of Consciousness on Sunday, the 6th of September 1981, becoming ‘Enlightened’ in the Eastern spiritual sense of the term. Spiritual Enlightenment has been around for some thousands of years ... and there is still no peace on earth. I spent the next eleven years endeavouring to discover why it did not work ... why it did not deliver the global Peace On Earth it seemed to promise ... and why it was not for everyone. Accordingly I sought to go beyond Spiritual Enlightenment into a condition I had glimpsed on many an occasion during those eleven years. On Friday, the 30th of October 1992, I succeeded and landed in actuality ... as distinct from either ‘reality’ or the ‘Greater Reality’.

RESPONDENT: How about this: I thought I was enlightened on 6/8/81. Still seeking for peace, I chased after various transcendental experiences for the next 11 years. On 30/10/92 I finally landed in what I call actuality (not to be confused with reality).

RICHARD: Or even better ... how about this: The imputed ‘I’ had a misconception that there was such an ascribed state as enlightenment and apparently seemed to attain to it on 6/8/81. Seemingly under the assumption of a seeking for a separate peace that does not exist, the same old ego-centric framework presumed after various transcendental falsely attributed experiences for the next 11 apparently real years. On 30/10/92, the habitual thought construction finally landed in what the structure labels an actual unreality which, if the body/ mind is observed carefully, cannot be found. It is not to be glimpsed with a confused reality which believes like a seems and ... .

RESPONDENT: Glimpsing from a structure is different than dropping the structure.

RICHARD: The immediate question that springs to mind is who is dropping the structure? And please ... do not tell me that it is the mind merely imputing a ‘me’ ... we have flogged that subject to death. It is male bovine faecal matter and you know it is.

RESPONDENT: Just as there is no ‘who’ to glimpse or land in altered states or be enlightened, there is no ‘who’ to drop anything. The structure is all the habitual thought constructions that tend to view life as if there indeed is some real ‘who’ that can drop, land, glimpse or be enlightened.

RICHARD: Yes ... and, of course, there is no enlightenment because for enlightenment to exist there has to be un-enlightenment. As un-enlightenment is imputed by a ‘me’ that is a thought construction, therefore one falsely attributes such a state as enlightenment where there really isn’t one.

I get the drift, now.

RESPONDENT: No position to view from. No one to enter or leave. No one to land anywhere. Nothing to do and nowhere to go. Yet it is time to go make breakfast.

RICHARD: Ah, yes ... the ancient Japanese art of the Tanka (sort of). Not being a poet myself, I will build upon an associate’s lampooning, for how else can I respond in kind? Sitting quietly (Prevaricating) Doing nothing (Procrastinating) Spring comes (Middle age arrives) And the grass grows of itself (The mid-life crisis unfolds) The delicate sound of lawn-mowers (The suburban dawning) Hanging on in quiet desperation ... .

RESPONDENT: Nice.

RICHARD: Nice? Nice?? Nice??? No, it’s not nice ... it’s everyday reality for millions of people.

RESPONDENT: Speaking of long words, what is the meaning of alexithymia?

RICHARD: Look, I was just being rude in as polite a manner as I could ... it doesn’t matter ... do not think any more about it at all as it is no longer relevant. Because I must say this – in all sincerity – that you have found an amazingly effective way of living with all the conflicting demands of life that would drive other people to drink or drugs. It was this bit about the torn face that you wrote elsewhere that made me realise that you tacitly acknowledge feelings: [Respondent]: ‘Here is another: Cat sleeping. Tall tree, bird’s nest. Planting tomatoes. Rabbit death, torn face. Weeds and more weeds. Chopping, digging’.

You are sensitive, after all.

March 26 1998:

RICHARD: The observer, having vanished – being extinct if it is a permanent condition – cannot possibly be the observed because there is no observer here to be ‘the observed’. Nor can there be ‘no separation’ here, because there is no observer to have ‘no separation’.

RESPONDENT: Yes. K’s ‘observer is the observed’ could be taken to suggest there is an observer that somehow unifies with the observed.

RICHARD: Not ‘could be taken’ but is indeed to be taken this way ... that is what unitary perception is (not to be confused with identifying with the observed).

RESPONDENT: It seems there was never some real observer to vanish or to unite with the observed. There is only a concept or a thought construction or an image of such a one that can be observed to come and go as it does.

RICHARD: Of course ... silly me, eh?

April 13 1998:

RICHARD (to Respondent No. 5): Some people appear to be quite ready to explain anything at all about what Mr. Jiddu Krishnamurti – who some maintain is not their mentor – meant by anything at all he said. This includes the ability to insist that he did not say he was god made manifest where he did say just that. What was written above is indicative of the approach of virtually everyone on this List who – while professing to be conducting a genuine inquiry – actually do not budge one iota from their adopted position. Perhaps the following dialogue might throw some light on the relevance of the quote that started this thread for anyone who would like to begin a genuine discussion – a discussion free of Mr. Jiddu Krishnamurti’s influence – for the very first time.

• [quote] Q: That thing that has to be discovered each by himself is God or enlightenment, is it not?
• [quote] U.G.: No. God is the ultimate pleasure, uninterrupted happiness. No such thing exists. Your wanting something that does not exist is the root of your problem. Transformation, Moksha, Liberation, and all that stuff are just variations on the same theme: permanent happiness. The body cannot take that. The pleasure of sex, for instance, is by nature temporary. The body can’t take uninterrupted pleasure for long, it would be destroyed. Wanting to impose a fictitious, permanent state of happiness on the body is a serious neurological problem. [endquote].

RESPONDENT: The object of wanting (i.e. God or enlightenment) is not the problem. Any wanting is manifestation of resistance/grasping based on the misconception of some ongoing truly existing ‘me’. The effort to grasp for enlightenment is but the avoidance of what is by chasing images. I can avoid this moment by stuffing my mouth with sweets or coffee or by trying to attain some happy state by meditation or by watching an action packed movie. Allowing those wants to come and go as they do without the slightest resistance/grasping we could label enlightenment or choiceless awareness and No. 14 can be happy without the slightest effort.

RICHARD: Of course ... silly me, eh?

*

RICHARD: [quote] Q: But the religions warn against pleasure-seeking. Through prayer, meditation, and various practices one is encouraged to transcend mere pleasure. [quote] U.G.: They sell you spiritual pathedrins, spiritual morphine. You take that drug and go to sleep. Now the scientists have perfected pleasure drugs, it is much easier to take. It never strikes you that the enlightenment and God you are after is just the ultimate pleasure, a pleasure moreover, which you have invented to be free from the painful state you are always in. Your painful, neurotic state is caused by wanting two contradictory things at the same time. [endquote]. (‘Mind is a Myth’. Disquieting Conversations with the Man called U.G. Edited talks between U.G. Krishnamurti and various questioners in India, Switzerland and California in 1983 and 1984).

RESPONDENT: Any wanting is a conflict between what is and what isn’t. Grasping God is a way of avoiding pain and not two contradictory things.

RICHARD: Yes, I am sure you are quite right ... your way of dealing with the dilemmas of life in the real world are remarkably efficacious. By the way ... did you notice that all those other people thought it was Mr. Jiddu Krishnamurti who made that quote?

But you did not make that silly mistake now, did you?


CORRESPONDENT No. 22 (Part Two)

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