Richard’s Selected Correspondence
On Actual and Actuality
RESPONDENT: Is there any difference between a realisation and an actualisation?
RICHARD: Generally speaking a realisation is an understanding of something previously not cognised and an actualisation is the putting of that comprehension into action ... as in acting upon that cognisance so that it is experiential and not only intellectual.
Here is another:
RESPONDENT: Richard, when I first came across Actualism I promised myself I would find a reasonable objection to which you would unreasonably reply. All I needed was a fact that would contradict your description of the Actual so I could continue on my way to either pursuing unrequited love – among other addictions – and/or all sorts of therapy. Reading U.G. Krishnamurti even cheered me up for a while, as he reinforced my belief that I wasn’t missing out on much. My life sucked and I knew where I was heading to, where it might have ended, yet I would rather continue suffering – sweet sorrow – than admit to the possibility of change; although I welcomed hope, and that is where the cycle of believing and doubting Actualism began.
I recall at one point I had the option to feel and be convinced that my objections were worthy and sensible and so continue hanging on to my beliefs, completely closing the possibility of a third alternative, and go back to living a normal or spiritual life. I remember how uncomfortable it was for me at the beginning not being able to find something that would contradict your words, I sooo wanted you to be wrong, however my common sense would not allow me to make silly objections; and it was the altruism I felt, my regard for others, which finally made me stick around. I am more than pleased to have taken the time and effort to see what you’re all about … and it has turned out to be the most important and fruitful decision of my life.
RICHARD: On the subject of being convinced that the objections be worthy and sensible ... many years ago, in face-to-face conversations on the topic of being happy and harmless, sometimes, after going round and round the same nonsense to no avail, I would suggest to my fellow human being that we put what is being discussed into the realm of wishful thinking, a fantasy as it were, and suppose a childhood fairy complete with twinkling wand were to drop by, or a genie were to pop out of a bottle, or whatever, and put to them the opportunity to be either happy (never mind being harmless in this exercise as the aim was to make it as uncomplicated as possible) for the remainder of their life or be unhappy – and whichever they were to choose it would be immediately granted with full irrevocable effect – then which would they choose?
Not altogether unsurprisingly the other would invariably say they would choose to be happy, of course (whilst looking at me as if I were some kind of idiot), yet when I would then say that very opportunity is just here, right now, each moment again in actuality, for life itself is indeed a magical wonderland granting happiness and harmlessness by the bucket-load, they would look at me as if I were some kind of trickster (for extracting from them what they really wanted by devious means) and could become quite irked.
Eventually I abandoned such a course of action as being counter-productive.
On the subject of silly objections ... many years ago, in face-to-face conversations on the topic of being happy and harmless, my then companion would oft-times observe, after yet another fellow human being had departed after sitting on my verandah or in my lounge-room for an hour or so, that the more I continued being factual, in the discussion, the more silly the objections had become until, on more than a few occasions she observed, some of the more wilder expostulations were teetering on the edge of being insanity operating.
RESPONDENT: I reflected on the nature of emotions, feelings, sensations, thoughts, and even consciousness attempting to clearly define what set of events or experiences were which. But as I did so, and continued to examine and analyse my definitions and experiences, it became clear that I could not, that such definitions are always fuzzy, the clear bright line moving and wavering upon examination. It seems that all such terms are convenient categories, but are not ‘actual’, while each experience is ‘actual’.
RICHARD: First of all, as you include your affective experiences (as per your ‘emotions, feelings’ phraseology) in amongst those experiences, upon which you are reflecting on the nature of, it is reasonable to assume that you are neither having a pure consciousness experience (PCE) nor actually free from the human condition ... therefore, it is further reasonable to assume that, by putting the word actual in scare quotes, you mean the same thing as what the word real means when it is used in a specific way on The Actual Freedom Trust web site, and its associated forum The Actual Freedom Trust mailing list, so as to draw a sharp distinction between the experiencing of 6.0+ billion peoples and the experiencing of persons either currently having a PCE or actually free from the human condition.
Thus what you are most likely wanting to convey is, in effect, that whilst each experience is real all such terms referring to them are not.
If so, then essentially what you are saying is that the word bread, for example, and any definition of that word is not real but that the very object which both the word and its definitions refer to is.
In other words, all the above is but a variation on that hoary adage ‘the word is not the thing’ (or ‘the map is not the territory’).
Having said that, one can now turn to the experiences themselves, bearing in mind that it is demonstrable both experientially and scientifically that, in the perceptive process, sensory perception is primary; affective perception is secondary; cognitive perception is tertiary.
It is all quite simple: if you were to reach a finger forward and rest its tip against the glass/ plastic which is a scant millimetre or so in front of these pixels that you are reading the very first experience is (cutaneous) sensation ... pure and simple.
That sensation will probably be a sensation of smoothness (as contrasted to touching emery cloth for instance) ... even so it is still sensation.
Furthermore, it may be a warm sensation or it may be a cool one ... even so it is still sensation.
Now, as touching the screen of a computer monitor is not likely to noticeably stir the affections (aka the affective feelings) a more dramatic example, such as touching a hot-plate, would show that there is quite a range of emotional/passional feelings to be evoked in the secondary part of the perceptive process ... and that, because of the dominance of those affective reactions to cutaneous pain, the primary experience (sensory perception) will probably not have been as dispassionately noticed as when touching the screen.
In either example (touching the screen/ touching a hot-plate) cognition may or may not occur ... there might be thought as recognition in the former (that it is glass/ plastic for instance) or there may be thought as remonstration in the latter (that it is silly thing to do for instance) and so on and so forth.
Lastly, regarding consciousness: the suffix ‘-ness’ forms a noun expressing a state or condition – as in the smoothness already mentioned above (where the sensation of the smooth glass/ plastic is expressed as a state or condition) – and thus the word consciousness properly refers to the state or condition of a flesh and blood body being conscious ... as in alive, not dead; awake, not asleep; and sensible, not insensible (comatose).
Howsoever, there are more than a few peoples who use that word to refer to identity (the ego-self and/or the soul/spirit-self) – as in the expression ‘consciousness has left the body’ at physical death – and that is possibly what is complicating the matter for you.
RESPONDENT: The way I interpret it, when the observing aspect of the psyche is not treated as different from the observed contents (fear, anger, etc) all conflict ends. The observer IS the content, IS programming.
RICHARD: Okay ... in the context under discussion the ‘observed contents’ of the psyche are the outside (pointed out by Mr. Jiddu Krishnamurti in the instance provided as being ‘the trees’, ‘the yellowing trees’, ‘the tamarind’, ‘the bougainvillea’, ‘the hills’, ‘the shape of the hills’, ‘the quality of their colour’, ‘all the colours’, ‘the shape of the land’, ‘the rocks’ and ‘the shadow’) and when the ‘observing aspect of the psyche’ is not treated as different from these observed contents then ‘all conflict ends’ (aka the outside is the inside) ... ‘the observer IS the content’ (aka the observer is the observed). This is nothing more than a different way of putting what I have been maintaining all along: ‘the inner’ creates its own reality, which it pastes as a veneer over the actual world, and then calls that reality ‘the outer’ ... then the ‘inner’, feeling isolated from ‘the outer’, seeks unity with its own creation (little realising it is its own creation of course) and the rare few who achieve this sleight of hand experience a state of unitive awareness (otherwise known as union or oneness or wholeness). Yet all the while this actual world goes unnoticed ... there is no inner or outer in actuality.
RESPONDENT: If the inner creates its own reality, that is delusion.
RICHARD: No ... that is illusion (such as is experienced by perhaps 6.0 billion people): the delusion is when the inner becomes one with its own reality (such as is experienced by perhaps 1.2 thousand people).
RESPONDENT: And conflict will not end with that because a reality invented by the mind of man is at odds with truth, with what is.
RICHARD: No, the reality invented by the feeling-fed mind of human beings *is* the truth, the what is ... what it is at odds with is the fact, the actual.
RESPONDENT: The observer is the observed means there is no subject split from object.
RICHARD: Which means that the outside is the inside.
RESPONDENT: There is an attention that is not identified, not localized, not structured in thought.
RESPONDENT: Therefore that attention has unlimited space.
RICHARD: If you are saying that the physical space, of the infinitude this material universe actually is, is boundless then I am in full agreement ... however it would seem from what follows that you are not and are describing a metaphysical space instead.
RESPONDENT: And it has its own movement.
RICHARD: Aye ... ‘tis a restless place that metaphysical space (whereas this actual infinitude is utter stillness).
RESPONDENT: You don’t have to be K to realize this is so.
RICHARD: When one walks naked (sans ‘I’ as ego and ‘me’ as soul) in the infinitude of this actual universe there is the direct experiencing that there is something precious in living itself. Something beyond compare. Something more valuable than any ‘King’s Ransom’. It is not rare gemstones; it is not singular works of art; it is not the much-prized bags of money; it is not the treasured loving relationships; it is not the highly esteemed blissful and rapturous ‘States Of Being’ ... it is not any of these things usually considered precious. There is something ultimately precious that makes the ‘sacred’ a mere bauble. It is the essential character of the infinitude of the universe – which is the life-giving foundation of all that is apparent – as a physical actuality. The limpid and lucid purity and perfection of actually being just here at this place in infinite space right now at this moment in eternal time is akin to the crystalline perfection and purity seen in a dew-drop hanging from the tip of a leaf in the early-morning sunshine; the sunrise strikes the transparent bead of moisture with its warming rays, highlighting the flawless correctness of the tear-drop shape with its bellied form. One is left almost breathless with wonder at the immaculate simplicity so exemplified ... and everyone I have spoken with at length has experienced this impeccable integrity and excellence in some way or another at varying stages in their life.
RESPONDENT: Wouldn’t it be much simpler just to refer to all of that simplicity as ‘scared’?
RICHARD: Because, as I already remarked (in the fifth sentence above), I am speaking of something ultimately precious that makes the ‘sacred’ a mere bauble.
RESPONDENT: Is it your palaverous and flowery description of something which makes it ‘more precious’ than ‘sacred’?
RESPONDENT: You yourself give a particular meaning to the word ‘affective’.
RICHARD: No ... I use the dictionary meaning, actually. The only words I give a particular meaning to are ‘actual’ and ‘real’ (because people have made the word ‘real’ mean pretty well anything metaphysical at all) and the words ‘fact’ and ‘true’ (because people have made the word ‘true’ mean pretty well anything at all). When people stop using ‘real’ and ‘true’ to mean metaphysical things I will go back to using them.
RESPONDENT: Here you produce a nice turnaround of facts. The discussion was about the ‘need to see beyond enlightenment’ which you proposed. Which I could not do from the point of view that even you had some enlightenment-process before actuality became clear to you. I found out that no understanding of ‘enlightenment’ as in ‘tried and true’ is needed for the experience of actuality.
RICHARD: Yet you do not seem to understand what I mean by my use of the word ‘actuality’ ... for I do not mean the every-day ‘reality’ as experienced by 5.8 billion human beings. The enlightened sages correctly state that this everyday reality is an illusion ... caused by the presence of a ‘self’ as in ‘I’ as ego. When the ‘I’ as ego dies, they say, a greater reality manifests and everyday reality disappears ... the illusion is dispelled. Now this ‘greater reality’ is a realm beyond time and space ... it is prior to existence itself and endlessly creates and sustains existence. This, they say, is ‘Consciousness’ or ‘The Ground Of Being’ or ‘The Tao’ or ‘Buddha-Nature’ or ‘God’ or some such other name. It is ‘Timeless’ and ‘Spaceless’, they say, ‘Unborn’ and ‘Undying’ ... and they realise that this is who they really are. They say that ‘I am The Absolute’ or ‘I am God’ or ‘I am The Truth’ or ‘I am The Buddha’ and so on. This is still an identity ... and an identity living as a greater reality that exists somehow other than the physical universe.
This identity is ‘me’ as soul ... a deeper identity at the core of ‘being’. When this identity – ‘me’ as soul – dies as did the ‘I’ as ego ... then an actual world becomes apparent. It is the physical actuality that is only here now at this moment in eternal time and this place in infinite space ... and nowhere or nowhen else. The 5.8 billion people cannot see actuality – and neither can the enlightened beings – because their very presence as a ‘being’ prevents this direct experience of actuality.
RESPONDENT: Originally it did produce schism. Now it doesn’t any more. For there is not any-thing to be found in ‘your’ phrase ‘beyond enlightenment’. For actually there can be no beyond. Please don’t misuse this point again.
RICHARD: There is indeed something beyond enlightenment and I am not ‘misusing’ this point at all ... I am reporting to you from my experience that there is an actuality lying right under your nose, as it were, only for it to become apparent ‘you’ as ‘self’ – both your ‘I’ as ego and your ‘me’ as soul – must cease to exist. As you have not reported to me of any such a happening, then you do not know what you are talking about. And the fact that you say that ‘for actually there can be no beyond’ and yet in your previous two posts you say ‘there are some things wonderful beyond actuality ... but it sure as Hell isn’t the ‘tried and true’ and ‘there are some things wonderful beyond actuality!’ conveys that you are confused into the bargain.
RESPONDENT: There are some things wonderful beyond actuality!
RICHARD: The only thing ‘beyond actuality’ is fantasy. This physical universe – being infinite in space and eternal in time – is all there is ... and it is what is wonderful. You see, you give yourself away with that statement ... this is what the Sages and Gurus have been saying for centuries. They say that there is something beyond time and space ... and that when you die you cast off your body like a suit of old clothes and go into the ‘Greater Beyond’. And here is you saying that there is something ‘beyond actuality’ ... something beyond this physical universe.
This is why I have been saying that you are coming out with a re-hash of the ‘Tried and True’. Do you see it now?
RESPONDENT: The television was beyond this actual world. Flying in aeroplanes was beyond this actual world. Internet mail was beyond this actual world. Abstract thinking made them possible. From your point of view you just use it when you find it. (Like Robinson used Friday at first).
RICHARD: Not so ... I understand and appreciate the big part abstract thinking and higher mathematics play in making all this technological progress possible. Where on earth did you get this notion from that I deny abstract thinking? Konrad has formed this picture of me too, despite what I say to him ... obviously you have not bothered to read the dialogues that I sent to you or you would have known this by now. I learnt algebra and trigonometry at school ... I am not stupid, you know.
RESPONDENT: I do see your point that I am the sensations. But how does this affect the metaphysical construct of an objective physical universe? If you ARE the sensations, and sensations are all you know, upon what basis do you posit an objective physical universe?
RICHARD: Because this brain has memory ... and memory is a record of a series of yesterdays, that were packed full of sensations, going all the way back to one’s earliest memory. Before that one can refer to the reports given by one’s parents (for example) back to one’s birth. Unless one is paranoid – thinking that there is a conspiracy by one’s parents to deceive one – then it is obvious that this universe has been here for all those years. Unless one wishes to be solipsistic and believe that this universe came into being when one was born (complete with 6.0 billion people whose sole aim in life is to convince you that it was here before you were born when it was not) then it is equally obvious that this universe has been here throughout human history.
RESPONDENT: When you dream, you have all those people who believe that that reality is real. Yet it’s just a dream; in a few minutes you’ll pop out of that and maybe wake up, at which time it’ll be just as though it had not happened. How do you know you are not dreaming everything around you right now? I bet you can’t prove it. It could be a dream or a hallucination. In that case, your belief in an objective universe is merely a /decision/ to prefer one model over another. I do not think the belief that the universe is objectively real offers any practical advantage over solipsism – both are merely unnecessary mental constructs. What is happening is what is happening, the patterns in which things occur are the patterns in which things occur, and one can accept these facts and make useful decisions based on them without either believing in an objective universe or being a solipsist. To summarize, please tell me what proof you have that the universe you perceive is not a dream or a hallucination. Remember that evidence that, to be valid, requires an assumption that the universe is not a dream or a hallucination does not count, since it is circular. If you have none, tell me what practical value is offered by an ‘objective universe’ metaphysics. If you have none, then can you grant that the belief in an objective universe is totally unnecessary?
RICHARD: I have no need to ‘grant that the belief in an objective universe is totally unnecessary’ at all; it starts from an obvious facticity. There is no need for ‘a belief’ in an objective universe ... no believing or disbelieving at all is required to determine objectivity’s self-evident factuality. There is a simple experiment that will demonstrate the actuality of objectivity in a way that a thousand words would not:
1. Place a large spring-clip upon your nose.
Now, as you rip the plaster from your mouth and gulp in that oh-so-sweet and objectively actual air, I ask you: Do you still believe that all this is ‘a dream or a hallucination’ ?
• Exit: intellectual masturbation.
RESPONDENT: What is known objectively is but a projection, image, an idea.
RICHARD: Surely not ... one sits in front of the computer monitor reading this sentence; the eyes see these words and the hand may reach for the words and touch the glass that is but a scant few millimetres to the front of them. It is obvious that the physical eye-balls and the physical hand are this flesh and blood body ... and that the computer monitor is a glass and plastic object that stays on the desk when the body gets up and walks away. I am not speaking of ‘a projection, image, an idea’ when I say that these fingertips, as an object (form), touching the glass of this computer monitor, touch another object (form). Knowing what the words ‘computer monitor’ and ‘glass’ and ‘eye-balls’ and ‘hand’ refer to does require recognition from thoughts’ memory – this is not under dispute – which could lead to ‘a projection, image, an idea’, but the fingertips touching form require no ‘projection, image, idea’ – any conceptualisation – to verify that form exists as an actuality. No thought is required at all in this verification ... touch is immediate and direct and factual.
RESPONDENT: Obviously, the actuality is not that.
RICHARD: What is the actuality (for you), then? That all these objects as form (the form pointed to by the words ‘computer monitor’ and ‘glass’ and ‘eye-balls’ and ‘hand’) are but a dream? Is the actuality that this body and that body and the mountains and streams and planets and stars are all non-existent outside of ‘No. 12-as-Consciousness’ perceiving? Is the actuality (for you) that nothing substantial, tangible, palpable, concrete, material, corporeal, physical and objective genuinely exists? If so, this is solipsism and it is pointless having a correspondence with you, because for a solipsist, the flesh and blood body called ‘Richard’ does not exist.
Speaking personally, I prefer to have a dialogue with someone who will acknowledge, by the fact of these words appearing on a screen with a traceable E-Mail address, that ‘Richard’ is a living, breathing flesh and blood human being.
RESPONDENT: However, for now it would be more helpful to me if you would please demonstrate the difference between the ‘direct experience of the actual’ and the actual that you imply is being experienced. Most simply, please show me the actual as other than ‘direct experience of the actual’. Thank you.
RICHARD: Shall I put it this way ... one sits in front of the computer monitor reading this sentence; the eyes see these words and the hand may reach for the words and touch the glass that is but a scant few millimetres to the front of them. It is obvious that the physical eye-balls and the physical hand are this flesh and blood body ... and that the computer monitor is a glass and plastic object that stays on the desk when the body gets up and walks away. This indicates that there is a distinct physical difference betwixt one and the other.
For a normal person (approximately 6.0 billion peoples currently alive on this planet) the experience just described is as if ‘I’ am inside this flesh and blood body looking out through ‘my’ eyes (as if looking out through a window to the world outside a house) ... and ‘I’ see an object called a computer monitor. Just to be sure that it is really there, ‘I’ reach out and feel that it is there through ‘my’ finger-tips ... thus ‘I’ am inside this flesh and blood body and ‘I’ experience the world of people, things and events ‘outside’ the body indirectly (through ‘my’ eyes, through ‘my’ ears, through ‘my’ nostrils, through ‘my’ mouth and through ‘my’ skin).
Are we together thus far? I will wait until I receive your response before proceeding to explore the difference between this indirect experiencing (as just detailed) and a ‘direct experience of the actual’ as in my initial article (quoted at the top of this post). Until the workings of this indirect activity is grasped ... it is no use to proceed further.
KONRAD: Hi, Richard. Still fooling around with us? Every time when I look at your writings, you remind me of the Borg from Star Trek, but then exactly the other way around. With them it was: ‘Resistance is futile’. And with you it is ‘argument is futile’. You have in common with them to have ended all emotions. But, contrary to them, with you all is just immense pleasure and joy, while with them it was all seriousness. I cannot help it. Every time I see your mailings I enjoy them immensely, just because of this. I have tried to prove to you, that nothing in existence is infinite. However, looking at your mails, I am almost convinced of making an error. At least your guts is infinite.
RICHARD: Actually you have not proved that ‘nothing in existence is infinite’ for you have been hung up on seeing infinity to be just a concept. As a concept, of course, it does not exist as an actuality. This is what logic does to you ... everything becomes conceptual. When you see – one of these days – that infinity and eternity are as actual as your toothache then life will become all of a sudden so much sweeter that you may very well pass out from the shock of so much pleasure rippling throughout this flesh and blood body.
RESPONDENT: Is there something you can say that Krishnamurti didn’t say that can relieve one of the human condition?
RICHARD: As about ninety-nine per cent of what I write was never said by Mr. Jiddu Krishnamurti, I rather fail to grasp the point you are making.
RESPONDENT: I fail to grasp the point you are making.
RICHARD: Mr. Jiddu Krishnamurti was talking about the metaphysical world whereas I write about the actual world. To become enlightened is to find a solution to the ills of humankind in a metaphysical dimension, and like all solutions found there, it does not work here on earth in this physical dimension. The Masters and Messiahs, the Saints and the Sages, the Avatars and the Saviours have had thousands of years to demonstrate the efficacy of their ‘Message’, their ‘Teachings’. There is still as much suffering now as there was then. The ‘Tried and True’ is the ‘Tried and Failed’. Unless this fact is thoroughly grasped, you will read anything I write in the same context as spiritual enlightenment and it will be seen as merely more of the same old stuff.
It is not enlightenment that I am speaking of ... it is all about going beyond enlightenment into the actuality of being here on this very physical planet that is meandering about in a very actual universe. Not only must the ego dissolve (like his did) but the soul must die as well (which his did not).
Then one is here in this actual world – not the real world that five point eight billion people are living in – but the actual world that is accessible only when ‘I’ as ego and ‘me’ as soul become extinct.
RICHARD: Mr. Jiddu Krishnamurti was talking about the metaphysical world whereas I write about the actual world.
RESPONDENT: J. Krishnamurti talked about the actual world, otherwise, I would not have been interested in reading him at all.
RICHARD: If I may point out? Mr. Jiddu Krishnamurti was talking about the real world ... but with rose-coloured glasses on. He saw the real world through the eyes of beauty and love, and thus never noticed the actual world that under-pins the reality that an identity pastes over the top of it.
RESPONDENT: He talked a whole lot more ‘actuality’ than you do with your ‘fairy tale world’. The descriptions you give of a world without the self ‘rings’ truth with me.
RICHARD: He also saw the real world through the eyes of compassion and truth ... and again missed the actual. The actual is pristine, pure, unadulterated, unimpeachable, undefiled, virginal, unsullied, innocent, guileless ... in a word: Perfect. In the press of everyday business, normal people do not notice this ... to keep with the analogy of glasses it is as if everybody has grey-coloured glasses on. Somebody becomes enlightened and puts rose-coloured glasses on over the top of the grey-coloured one’s.
I have taken off the grey-coloured glasses ... and no longer need the rose-coloured glasses of beauty, truth, love and compassion to make reality palatable. Normal reality and mystical Reality have both vanished along with the last trace of identity.
The words and phrases that I use, like ‘magical’ and ‘fairy-tale-like’ and ‘arcadian’ and ‘ambrosial’ are but descriptive phrases intended to convey a flavour. I am not, most definitely not, ‘off with the fairies’. That is too childish to contemplate.
RICHARD: Actual means ‘things’ ascertained sensately ... divinity (being heavenly as opposed to earthly) can never be apprehended by the senses. Thus the divine is not actual.
RESPONDENT: The term ‘actual’ seems to be key in describing your present ongoing state of mind: ‘actual’ existing in act and not merely potentially; not false or apparent; existing or occurring at the time. Would you say that ‘things’ ascertained sensately really exist and are not apparent?
RICHARD: Yes. No deep thought or penetrating insight at all is required to determine any ‘things’ self-evident factuality. There is a simple three-step experiment that will demonstrate the actuality of objective reality in a way that a thousand words would not:
Now, as you rip the plaster from your mouth and gulp in that oh-so-sweet and actual air, I ask you: Do you still believe that it is thought merely imputing a reality to ‘things’?
Seeing this fact will set you free to live in actuality.
RESPONDENT: Would the actual be things that are impermanent, permanent or neither ?
RICHARD: The form ‘things’ take is impermanent ... the matter they are made of is permanent. Things are material ... matter itself arranges and re-arranges itself endlessly into differing forms. This planet we all live on is matter that had a beginning as this particular form called ‘The Earth’; this form grows; this form ages and this form ends ... but only as this particular form (somewhat like this physical body). This planet’s matter re-arranges itself into another form when this solar system, as its particular form, implodes or explodes or whatever it does. This goes on for galaxy after uncountable galaxy ... this material universe’s space is infinite and its time is eternal. This physical universe endlessly re-arranges itself into multitudinous different forms ... just like the particular physical matter of the body does after physical death and did before physical birth. Because the universe is eternal – the universe is here now and it always has been and it always will be – it is therefore permanent. This universe never began and will never finish. It is truly the ‘Unborn and Undying’ ... I see no need to invent a metaphysical god to have these characteristics.
Except, of course, that ‘I’ wish to be Immortal.
RESPONDENT: What truly existing ‘thing’ was your example supposed to illustrate ?
RICHARD: Air ... as I wrote above ‘that oh-so-sweet and actual air’. Air is mixture of gases comprising the Earth’s atmosphere. The mixture contains a group of gases of nearly constant concentrations and a group with concentrations that are variable in both space and time. The atmospheric gases of steady concentration (and their proportions in percentage by volume) are as follows:
Of the gases present in variable concentrations, water vapour, ozone, carbon dioxide, sulphur dioxide, and nitrogen dioxide are of principal importance. The typical concentration ranges of these gases (in percentage by volume) are as follows:
Although present in relatively small amounts, these variable constituents are very important for maintaining life on Earth’s surface. Water vapour is the source for all forms of precipitation and is an important absorber and emitter of infrared radiation. Carbon dioxide, besides being involved in the process of photosynthesis, is also an important absorber and emitter of infrared radiation. Ozone, which is present mainly in the atmospheric region 10 to 50 km (6 to 30 miles) above the Earth’s surface, is an effective absorber of ultraviolet radiation from the Sun and effectively shields the Earth from all radiation of wavelengths less than 3,000 angstroms.
RESPONDENT: Would the actual be things that are impermanent, permanent or neither ?
RICHARD: Because the universe is eternal – the universe is here now and it always has been and it always will be – it is therefore permanent. This universe never began and will never finish. It is truly the ‘Unborn and Undying’ ... I see no need to invent a metaphysical god to have these characteristics.
RESPONDENT: Now you are suggesting some permanent, unborn and undying thing called ‘this universe’ or ‘matter’?
RICHARD: Yes. Most scientists like to say that the universe started twelve to fifteen billion years ago (Big Bang) and has about another ten to fifteen to go before it ends (Big Crunch). They say it came out of nothing and will go back into nothing. This is not scientific talk ... it is metaphysical talk. Spiritual people say that the we came out of nothingness and will go back into nothingness. Virtually nobody is willing to see that this physical universe is already ‘it’ ... because to do so is the ending of not only ‘I’ as ego, but ‘me’ as soul. Blind nature’s survival instinct persuades them to seek immortality ... and deny physical death’s oblivion.
RESPONDENT: How is a permanent, unborn nature of all forms any different from the essential nature of all forms?
RICHARD: It is an enormous – and vital – difference. In actuality, physical nature – ‘things’ – is the ultimate ... and is in no way metaphysical. Your ultimate ‘essential nature’ is nothingness ... no ‘things’.
RICHARD: Without the ‘I’ as ego and the ‘me’ as soul there is apperceptive awareness. As this apperceptive flesh and blood body, which is made of the same ‘stuff’ as the universe, I am this material universe being able to consciously experience itself as a sensate and reflective human being. Thus infinitude experiences itself as me here and now. It sure beats any spurious ‘Immortality’ in a specious ‘After-Life’.
RESPONDENT: Now you suggest what I have previously said about the already always essential nature being obscured by notions of a ‘me’.
RICHARD: Except, as I have said above, your ‘essential nature’ is a metaphysical nature and not an actual nature. You are talking about an altered state of consciousness called Spiritual Enlightenment (wherein half of the identity dies) whereas I am describing an actual freedom (wherein the other half of the identity dies) ... thus this is beyond enlightenment.
RESPONDENT: Also now you suggest that an ‘I’ is an illusion (i.e. something that does not have any substantial true existence), which is different than: [Richard to No. 19]: ‘But I do not deny ‘self, soul, etc.’ ... you must be confusing me with No. 22. I fully acknowledge their very real existence and clearly state that the ‘I’ as ego and ‘me’ as soul are the source of all human problems. I have said this over and over again to the point of tedious repetition ... do you not read what I write?’ [endquote]. It sounds as if your point of view is evolving.
RICHARD: My ‘point of view’ is not evolving at all. I have always maintained, in all my posts, that whilst the ‘I’ is real – sometimes very real – it is not actual. I have also made clear – to the point of almost tedious repetition for some people – that I draw a sharp distinction between the those two words, as any dictionary gives ‘real’ and ‘actual’ the same meaning. As various peoples over the years tried to tell me that their god was real, I abandoned the word and settled upon ‘actual’, for no one has been able to tell me that their god was actual. If people stop using the word ‘real’ in the way they do, then I am quite happy to go back to using it. Its etymological meaning is as the word ‘actual’: truly existing.
So therefore, if god is real ... then the ‘I’ is real. However, just as any god is an illusion, similarly the ‘I’ is an illusion. Now, everybody’s experience of everyday life – called reality – is also an illusion. Therefore I talk about an actuality that this everyday reality – as a veneer pasted over – is obscuring. In order to escape from this reality – which is grim and glum – people seek a greater reality (what you call ‘essential nature’ other people call ‘greater reality’). As this is self-aggrandisement, I call it a delusion ... a delusion born out of the illusion.
RICHARD: Any ‘me’ – any psychological or psychic identity – is an emotional-mental construct. This flesh and blood body is not such a construct ... this is actual.
RESPONDENT: Actual in what sense?
RICHARD: Actual in the sense that anybody can see it, hear it, touch it, smell it and even taste it. Are you for real in this question? Are you on the same planet ... this one I am on is called ‘Planet Earth’?
RESPONDENT: This body seem quite impermanent and quite dependent on many factors outside of it for its existence.
RICHARD: It is indeed impermanent ... you are but a missed heart-beat or two away from physical death each moment again. It is possible to actually experience what all these ‘many factors’ are. I describe this on-going experiencing as ‘I am this very material universe experiencing itself in all its magnificence as a sensate and reflective human being’.
RESPONDENT: How can you make any kind of actual division between this body and the sun or the air in order to define its actual existence?
RICHARD: I do not just sit around defining things away ... I live what I write about. In this particular flesh and blood body called Richard, ‘I’ as ego and ‘me’ as soul self-immolated some years ago. That was when the already always existing peace-on-earth became apparent for the twenty four hours of every day ... each moment again.
It is yours for the choosing.
RESPONDENT: I have only brought attention to the divisions that you have expressed as someone who has attained, someone who lives this way or that, some real separate body, some ‘me’ that is born or dies, or some one that has qualities. Those presently occurring concepts are an expression of life that are being questioned. Viewing from this peace-on-earth state of mind, what part of a body actually exists if at every moment every aspect of that body is impermanent? What, other than a label (body), has any continuity that can be a basis of any thing being actual?
RICHARD: May I suggest a practical example instead of more words?
Does this ‘mirage’ ego feel foolish for being so stupid all this while?
RESPONDENT: Stinging is just stinging. It does not mean there is some real face that is stinging or some actual body that is stinging. I would suggest that the apparent suffering of this apparent body lacks any true independent existence. The face of one moment is not the same as the face of another. There is no ongoing thing behind the label face. The body of one moment is not the same as the body of another. There is no ongoing thing behind the label body. In this way there is no truly actual face or body that has any ongoing independent existence.
RICHARD: Your use of sophistry (what I call ducking and weaving and slipping and slithering) to avoid having the apt description ‘pacifist’ applied to your modus operandi has already been covered in our previous conversation.
RESPONDENT: If I may interject, truth is like that is it not?
RICHARD: Aye ... the day-to-day ‘truth’ is pretty well whatever anyone wants to make it be – and if the other buys that truth it is mutual masturbation – and the eternal ‘Truth’, being ineffable, is but ‘my will be done in heaven as here on earth’.
RESPONDENT: Descriptions do not apply to the actual, actual world like they do to the actual conceived (by thought) world – do they?
RICHARD: May I suggest? Publish this rewrite of the dictionaries, that you are busy with, as soon as possible so that others can know what you mean? In the meanwhile, the word ‘actual’ means: ‘already occurring; existing as factually true; as in act; deed’ ... which means physically existing here on earth, visible to the senses.
Whereas the word ‘fantasy’, being derived from ‘phantasy’ means: ‘phantom made visible by imagination’ . ... and etymologically, the word ‘believe’ means: ‘fervently wishing to be factually true’ . I only mention this because a world ‘conceived (by thought)’ can never be actual.
RESPONDENT: Perhaps No. 14 is a little too immersed in the actual, actual world for your classification net(s)?
RICHARD: If I may point out? A word’s meaning, as per dictionary definition, foreordains that any word I use cannot be my ‘classification net(s)’ . It is just that common usage has blurred the distinction betwixt fact and belief so much so that anyone using sufficient sophistry can get away with anything at all and still be considered wise these days.
RESPONDENT No. 4: What do you mean by a ‘perfect day’?
RICHARD: I mean a faultless day; a flawless day; a spotless day; an impeccable day; an immaculate day; an unflawed day; an unblemished day; an unimpeachable day; an unsullied day; an unfaultable day; an untarnished day; a pure day; a salubrious day; a blameless day; an irreproachable day; an unassailable day; an unadulterated day; an uncontaminated day; an unpolluted day; a clean day; a wholesome day; an innocent day; a guiltless day; an irreprehensible day; an untouched day; an unmodified day; a fresh day; a clear day; a sparkling day; an unsoiled day; a bright day; a new, lucid day; a scintillating day; an original day; a brilliant day; an excellent day; a novel day; a superb day; a wonderful day; a terrific day; a splendid day; a fabulous day; a fantastic day; a marvellous day; an amazing day; a thrilling day and so on. In other words: a magical day.
RESPONDENT No. 4: Richard, if that [‘an uncontaminated day; an unpolluted day’] really is your definition of a ‘perfect day’ then I can only conclude that have not been living on this planet where there clearly is contamination and pollution.
RESPONDENT: You have to realize that Richard lives in his own world.
RICHARD: Not so ... Richard lives in the actual world of this body and that body; the actual world of the mountains and the streams; the actual world of the trees and the flowers; the actual world of the clouds by day and the stars at night.
It is no more my world than it is your world or his world or her world and so on.
RESPONDENT: He doesn’t live in the same one you and I do.
RICHARD: Indeed not ... I was born into the ‘real world’ and found it to be the pits. Consequently I abandoned ‘humanity’ and all of their bickering and squabbling and whinging and bewailing and landed in this pristine actual world ... I left the tear-soaked ‘Land Of Lament’ behind forever.
RESPONDENT: Ego can never be salubrious ...
RICHARD: I never said it was or could be ... this is what is called a ‘straw-man argument’ (wherein you invent something I did not say then criticise your own invention as if you are commenting on what I actually wrote).
RESPONDENT: Richard said: ‘detrimental to both individual and communal salubrity’. Both ‘self’ and ‘other selfs’ are illusions of separation. Ego can never be salubrious.
RICHARD: There does seem to be a misunderstanding ... unlike you I do not deny the actuality of people, things and events (as in your ‘there are no objects’ statement). Therefore, there are indeed 6.0 billion individual flesh and blood human bodies currently walking and talking, eating and drinking, urinating and defecating, waking and sleeping all over this verdant and azure planet. These individual flesh and blood bodies are not ‘illusions of separation’ here in this actual world. Thus 6.0 billion individual flesh and blood human bodies interact with each other in a way that is called communal ... and I was describing to another co-respondent that not only is enlightenment a totally unnecessary step towards an actual freedom from the human condition, but that it is detrimental to both individual and communal salubrity into the bargain.
If your understanding (as in your ‘there are no objects’ statement) makes you read this as me saying ‘detrimental to both individual ego and communal ego salubrity’ then so be it ... I cannot take your understanding (as in your ‘there are no objects’ statement) into account each and every time I write to any other co-respondent and considerately phrase my words in a way that suits your understanding (as in your ‘there are no objects’ statement).
RESPONDENT: But you are damaging my brain when you say that ‘the content of the words is what is important’.
RICHARD: In what way is your brain being damaged?
RESPONDENT: The only ‘actual’ thing contained in a word is letters.
RICHARD: In what way will the spoken word be any different ... words are words whether they are transmitted as pixels on a screen to be read by the eyes or transmitted as sound bytes to be heard by the ears.
RESPONDENT: The word ‘bread’ doesn’t contain it.
RICHARD: This psittacism is so trite it is a wonder it travels around so much ... of course the word itself, the letters which it is comprised of, are not what the word refers to.
RESPONDENT: The meaning is not just the common usage of the dictionary that we have to agree upon, but the depth, the quality, the feeling of it. Sorry, ‘feeling’ is a devil word for you, but I can’t find a replacement.
RICHARD: And therein lies the rub: to be looking for quality as a feeling is to be missing quality as a fact ... a felt quality is not an actual quality (just as a feeling of caring is not actually caring, for example).
Incidentally, ‘feeling’ is not a ‘devil’ word for me ... it simply has no application here in this actual world.
RESPONDENT: The word, the phrase, the explanation are not the actuality, they are only one mean of communication.
RICHARD: Yet even if you were to meet me in person you would still not be able to get the other means of communication you are wanting (the transmission of affective feelings/psychic currents) as there is no such thing here in this actual world.
RESPONDENT: The actual never conditions the brain ...
RICHARD: In order to know what ‘the actual’ does or does not do there must be the direct experience of it – else this is just theorising – and if there is the direct experiencing of the actual then why are you, not only dismissing my report of life here in this actual world, but feeling for meaning in my words?
And I mention this because anybody that I have been with whilst they were having a pure consciousness experience (PCE) have tended to say things such as they now see what I have been saying all along for themselves; that everything I have ever said is accurate; that they can finally understand what I have been getting at; that they now know why it is difficult for others to comprehend; that they can talk on an equal footing with me here; that life is indeed grand ... amazing, marvellous, and truly wondrous.
RESPONDENT: ... but the theory, the conclusion, the description, the abstraction, do condition it.
RICHARD: Are you saying that the [quote] ‘damaging’ [endquote] being done to your brain is the conditioning it gets upon reading my words? If so, how will hearing this voice box utter the words not damage your brain in a like manner?
RESPONDENT: The chair never conditions the brain but AF do condition.
RICHARD: It would be handy to write this out in full (instead of just using the acronym) so as to see more clearly just what it is you are saying here:
If you could satisfactorily explain to me how an actual freedom from the human condition conditions the brain I will be most surprised.
RESPONDENT: The formula, the image, conditions the brain, not that which is actually happening, taking place.
RICHARD: Are you saying that the [quote] ‘damaging’ [endquote] being done to your brain is the conditioning it gets upon reading my words as being a formula, an image? If so, how will hearing this voice box utter the words not have your brain form images and see formulae?
RESPONDENT: If you have difficulty in understanding what is ‘the actual’, ask someone to hit you on the head with a wooden stick.
RICHARD: I have no difficulty whatsoever in understanding what the actual is ... so much so that I can assure you that, even if someone were to hit you on the head with a wooden stick, you still would not be any the wiser.
RESPONDENT: I am sure you’ll get an instant ‘sensation’.
RICHARD: As I have no intention of applying your method for understanding what the actual is you will just have to be content with your surety about what I would get.
RESPONDENT: But be careful not so strong or you might become unconscious.
RICHARD: As I have no need of your (useless) method such a thing will never happen.
RESPONDENT: If the word is all that matters ...
RICHARD: Where did I say that ‘the word’ is all that matters?
RESPONDENT: ... then we [the audience] should also – together with our feelings – get rid of our ears and our eyes and just use Braille!
RICHARD: In what way will dispensing with both auditory perception and visual perception, and using cutaneous perception instead, enable your brain to not be damaged by the conditioning it gets upon receiving my words as images and formulae via Braille?
As for getting rid of your feelings: as ‘I’ am ‘my’ feelings and ‘my’ feelings are ‘me’ the getting rid of the one is the getting rid of the other – they are one and the same thing – so what you are proposing here is to be some kind of stripped-down identity, wherein the feelings are so suppressed/repressed as to give the appearance of having got rid of them, that you may very well wind up being what is known in the psychiatric profession as a sociopathic personality (popularly known as a psychopath).
May I ask how you consider that a sociopathic cutaneous perception of my words is not going damage your brain?
RESPONDENT: What a wonderful new world is ahead of us words ... words …words ... please give us more words!
RICHARD: It is fascinating just how much mileage you are getting out of misrepresenting what I said ... in case you have forgotten by now this is what I actually wrote:
RESPONDENT: You and I are writing to the wind if we don’t think and share together the thing that lies behind the words, behind the descriptions, the explanations.
RICHARD: Indeed ... which is why I referred you to the content of the words and not to the way they are delivered. Now, your solution to the difficulty you are having, due to focussing on the words themselves rather than being attentive to the content of the words, is to have me change my modus operandi so that you can hear this voice box utter the words – preferably in concert with a moving picture of the body itself – in the expectation that me doing so would somehow enable you to break through this fixation you have on the words themselves.
Could you explain to me how this solution of yours is likely to do the trick?
RESPONDENT: The word is a symbol and not the actual.
RICHARD: Aye, I got it that the word ‘bread’ itself was not what the word referred to when I was about 4 years old.
RESPONDENT: Understanding isn’t merely an intellectual or theoretical affair about which we can talk/write endlessly, adding more ideas to it thereby thinking we are growing?
RICHARD: As I am not presenting ideas but facts and actuality then any intellectual/ theoretical adding of ideas to them that you do is bound to be short-lived as the very silliness of doing so will make sure that such a course of inaction cannot possibly go on endlessly.
RESPONDENT: Haven’t you guys figured it out yet? You are Richard’s fall guys. He’s having a ball batting you around with his convoluted replies. He doesn’t give a brass razoo how befuddled you get trying to work them out, just as long as you keep at it, ‘cause without you he’s literally dead. You’re being used as fodder to show off his literal [sic] prowess and snare you into the web he weaves to cement his cyber immortality. Don’t waste your time feeding this wolf. He’s a word junky, let him starve.
RICHARD: By my count there are at least ten porkies in those six sentences.
RESPONDENT: Upon reflection I should have said ‘I thank actuality for this’.
RICHARD: Ha ... would that be Mr. or Ms. Actuality you are thanking?
RESPONDENT: Because the marvel of life has nothing to do with AF or actualism, they are just more concepts.
RICHARD: How on earth can either an actual freedom from the human condition (aka ‘AF’) or the direct experience that matter is not merely passive (aka ‘actualism’) be concepts?
RESPONDENT: There is no alternative, there is only actuality. Go live it.
RICHARD: Now here is a truly remarkable thing: nowhere in any of the 211 e-mails you have written to this mailing list have you ever mentioned having recalled/ having had a pure consciousness experience (PCE) – on the contrary you expressly deny such total purity is possible and air your ignorance of what pure sensation really entails in public – and yet you speak as if intimately knowledgeable about actuality ... the world of the senses. In short: that actuality you advocate living is a conceptual actuality.
RESPONDENT: Dream on.
RICHARD: This is what that phrase can mean:
Here is your first assertion:
Here is your second assertion:
Here is your third assertion:
Here is your fourth assertion:
Here is your fifth assertion:
Here is your sixth assertion:
Here is your seventh assertion:
Here is your eighth assertion:
Here is your ninth assertion:
Here is your tenth assertion:
There is no way it be improbable or unrealistic that all the above be porkies ... your mendacity knows no bounds.
Furthermore, there is also no way it be improbable or unrealistic that neither an actual freedom from the human condition (aka ‘AF’) nor the direct experience that matter is not merely passive (aka ‘actualism’) are concepts.
Moreover, there again is no way it be improbable or unrealistic that the ‘actuality’ you advocate living is not a conceptual actuality ... not only you have both expressly denied that the total purity of a pure consciousness experience (PCE) is possible and publicly aired your ignorance of what pure sensation really entails but you have had the following to report as well:
Which was followed by this the next day:
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.
Richard’s Text ©The Actual Freedom Trust: 1997-. All Rights Reserved.