Richard’s Selected Correspondence
On Common Sense
IRENE to Vineeto: When Richard used to come out with a statement that would go totally against my own sense of right, true, correct, I would always do a scientific experiment: I would ask myself to go and find out who of us was ultimately right. To be unbiased (which is the true meaning of scientific) I would allow, for a while, the possibility that I had been wrong so that I could be indeed open to Richard’s statement being right. Often I was convinced by his common sense and logical approach and decided to change my old mind, or I discovered, by giving him the benefit of the doubt, that his opinion was a result of repressed feelings. For a long while I favoured his outlook over my own, but more and more I had to admit that it was not me who was wrong but Richard.
RICHARD: I would question that it is scientifically unbiased to allow something only ‘for a while’ ... as this sounds to me as a conditional – if not grudging – preparedness to examine one’s own borrowed truths. Also, I am surprised to find you being ‘convinced’ only by my approach ... what about seeing a fact for yourself? Then you do not have to ‘decide to change your mind’ because seeing a fact sets you free ... you then stand on your own two feet. Then you are autonomous ... whereas a changed mind can always be changed back again at will. All that you describe above is a far cry from investigating and uncovering ... exploring and discovering ... seeking and finding out for oneself. Actuality is that which is self-evident, obvious, factual ... opinion does not come into an actual freedom and never has done. Indeed, as you say that you would ‘favour his outlook over my own’, then it becomes obvious that you never saw the fact for yourself. Giving some one the benefit of the doubt is but a ploy to keep one’s pre-set feeling subtly in place underneath it all. It is a prime example of the domination that intuition has over actuality.
RESPONDENT: If your answer is the memory of peak experience, then I would say that even in virtual freedom one is discontent with the life as it is, maybe at more subtle level, and then this is no virtual freedom and hence the logical flaw.
RICHARD: Yet ‘virtual’ means ‘almost as good as’ or ‘nearly the same as’ or ‘in effect comparable to’ and so on. Therefore, in regards to what is or is not a virtual freedom, watch out that you do not make it indistinguishable from an actual freedom or else it will result in the ‘all or nothing’ dilemma of spiritual achievement ... and lead to that flagitious ‘cutting the other down to size’ syndrome so prevalent in that loving and compassionate world. I leave it up to the person involved to decide for themselves where they are at along their path – the ‘twenty three hours fifty nine minutes (99%)’ is an arbitrary figure, by the way, and I decline to be a probity policeman for anyone – and if one is not scrupulously honest with oneself then just who is one fooling?
Nevertheless, I cannot recall any discontent whatsoever in 1981 ... yet I wished to go all the way. I would not settle for second-best – having experienced the best on numerous occasions – and there was also the pressing matter of all the suffering of my fellow human beings. All the wars and rapes and murders and tortures and domestic violence and child abuse and sadness and loneliness and grief and depression and suicides had impinged themselves indelibly upon my consciousness and provided the necessary ‘back pressure’ to encourage me to proceed poste-haste. Also, logic has its uses in mathematical and mechanical areas of life – human’s creature comforts are dependent upon it – but I have yet to meet a logician who enjoys and appreciates virtually each moment again and essentially lives in peace and harmony with a person of the other gender, day after day after day, through the application of logic to the problem of the human condition. Sensible reason and naiveté‚ coupled with commonsense – practical, down-to-earth, sensitive rationality – triumphs over logic any day.
RESPONDENT: I see the intuition as the key to the proper integration of the intellect and instincts. And I am very clear and pointing out that I am not talking about the common use of the word. Rather, I relate it to an ‘innate intelligence’ that is already always functioning in each of us and the universe. You then quickly point out that you ‘have no intuition whatsoever ...’.
RICHARD: Indeed ... the intuitive/ imaginative faculty disappeared when the entire psyche became extinct.
RESPONDENT: On exploring your web site it was clear to me that what you call ‘intuition’ is precisely the so called intuition of many new age circles. That was certainly best left behind, but it is not what I am talking about. I suspect what I call ‘intuition’ relates very well to what you call ‘native intelligence’ and we would agree that this sense if mostly distorted as long as the intellect’s capacity to clearly reflect it is diminished by emotional confusions.
RICHARD: One’s native intelligence cannot operate and function cleanly and clearly whilst ‘I’ am in there trying to run the show. The nearest thing to what I call native intelligence is known as commonsense in the ‘real world’. Intuition, be it of the NDA variety, or any other variety is affectively-based ... thus you would be relying on the notoriously unreliable feelings to be the arbiter of what is appropriate or inappropriate action.
RESPONDENT: I’m not sure even this distorted ‘filtering through’ is what is normally called ‘common sense’ (the term is so poorly applied these days. It is also this faculty, (‘native intelligence’ to you; ‘intuition’ to me) that I am referring to when I speak of one’s ‘sense of responsibility’.
RICHARD: I use the phrase native intelligence in the meaning of ‘autochthonous acumen’ or ‘indigenous prudence’ or ‘congenital judicity’. I am meaning a down-to-earth and matter-of-fact practicality ... an innate sensibility. Intuition is not sensible.
I have no sense of responsibility whatsoever ... the ‘I’ that was took full responsibility and an action that was not of ‘his’ doing resulted.
RESPONDENT: Finally, while agreeing that this ‘innate intelligence is always already functioning in each of us’ you seem to take exception in regards to the universe. You say ‘there is no intelligence that is running the universe, however. Only the human animal is intelligent’. I demur. First, let’s be clear, I did not say that there is an intelligence ‘running the universe’. Rather, I said there is an innate intelligence ‘functioning in ... the universe’. To clarify, an innate intelligence functioning in and as the universe.
RICHARD: Hokey-dokey ... there is no ‘innate intelligence functioning in and as the universe’. Only the human animal is innately intelligent ... and this universe is much, much more than merely intelligent.
RESPONDENT: If you still want to maintain that only ‘the human animal is intelligent’ I would refer you to your own writings again. You say, ‘Life is intrinsically purposeful, the reason for existence lies openly all around. Being this very air I live in, I am constantly aware of it as I breathe it in and out; I see it, I hear it, I taste it, I smell it, I touch it, all of the time. It never goes away ... nor has it ever been away. ‘I’ was standing in the way of meaning’.
RICHARD: Yes ... this ‘meaning to life’, this ‘purpose of living’, this ‘reason for existence’ is innate to carbon-based life-forms that have evolved intelligence (and ask why): as me the universe can experience it’s infinitude as a sensate and reflective human being. This is an infinite and eternal meaning to life; this is an infinite and eternal purpose of living; this is an infinite and eternal reason for existence.
RESPONDENT: Humility can not be discarded.
RICHARD: It can and it was ... when pride went the antidotal humility also vanished.
RESPONDENT: It is a state of polarity relative to something higher than itself.
RICHARD: Only in someone’s dreams and schemes.
RESPONDENT: What would discard it?
RICHARD: One’s native intelligence in operation (what people call ‘commonsense’ in the ‘real world’).
RESPONDENT: The question should be ‘how do we get it?’
RICHARD: You only can get it by narcissistically desiring to be the next manifestation of the ‘Supreme Intelligence’ ... you do not get to be ‘God On Earth’ unless you are first humble.
RESPONDENT: The problem with these discussions in that we already have arrived at our points of view on these subjects. The details are interesting, but I doubt anyone will change his mind. You write as though there was a higher purpose to man’s intelligence on one hand, but you will have to say there is none in order to be consistent with your other statements.
RICHARD: Not so ... there is the salubrious purpose of bringing to an end, once and for all, all the wars and murders and rapes and tortures and domestic violence and child abuse and sadness and loneliness and grief and depression and suicides and such-like that beset this other-wise fair planet we all live on ... just for starters. The primary purpose, however, is so that one experientially knows, each moment again, what life is all about ... one attains to one’s destiny: I am this infinite and eternal universe experiencing itself as an apperceptive human being; as such the universe is aware of its own infinitude.
The ‘higher purpose’ is to be living the utter peace of the perfection of the purity welling endlessly as the infinitude this eternal and infinite universe actually is.
RESPONDENT: To me, this is not an intellectual pursuit whereby the truth is arrived at through logic and study.
RESPONDENT: We are given to know one thing or another.
RICHARD: To know is one thing ... to live it, each moment again, day after day for the remainder of one’s life, is something else entirely.
RESPONDENT: It is up to us whether we accept what is given to us to know, or reject it.
RESPONDENT: It is like thought casts a one dimensional shadow over the much fuller than 3-D actual universe.
RICHARD: Yet when the thinker is not ... much fuller than 3-D thought is free to operate episodically as required by the circumstances.
RESPONDENT: Even then thought is limited, is it not, though there is no division between it and the unlimited fullness of that?
RICHARD: Thought is functional (operating in the domain of making sense of what is happening and in the area of commonsense cause and effect) ... if that is what you mean by ‘limited’? When ‘the unlimited fullness of that’ is allowed free rein thought functions at its optimum ... a much fuller than 3-D thought.
Thoughts are sparkling ... coruscating.
RESPONDENT: Infused/ steeped/ in harmony with – the fullness that is, eh?
RESPONDENT: And I have taken the liberty to snip as I don’t feel much inclined or competent to discuss the theories of the origin of the universe right now. Maybe, after reading more about the current state of the science, I will pick up that thread. The Einstein example was just an illustration of what clarity means to my mind.
RICHARD: Maybe it is indeed an illustration of what clarity means to your mind ... yet that clarity – and the meaning of that clarity to your mind – is not being conveyed successfully by your illustration. May I ask? Am I writing to the same person who wrote: ‘Putting things across logically is the first requirement of any discussion. If that requirement is not met, there is no communication. Then ‘X’ can write any crap and assume no responsibility’?
It is not necessary that you ‘discuss the theories of the origin of the universe’ either now or at any other time ... I was merely presenting a logical follow-through of what is implied and indicated in Mr. Albert Einstein’s statement (which is the statement that you enthusiastically endorsed in the snipped part of the post. Vis.:
I also sketched out a brief resume of what his devout followers have made out of his General Theory of Relativity ... and I indicated where theoretical physics was heading to. But, of course his statement does not have to mean ‘the origins of the universe’ to you at all ... but it does means something to you, does it not? Otherwise why introduce it as an example of clarity? What does it mean to you? Why is it, to your mind, clarity?
I do so look forward to having a logically consistent correspondence with you; a discussion with someone understands and accepts that some people do not have the required training or education to engage in consistent discussions ... like you so aptly pointed out in a previous post. Vis.:
But I also understand, seeing that I am but a lay-person dabbling in the science as presented by the popular press and that I have no formal training or academically acquired knowledge whatsoever whilst you do (before you switched from physics to MIS), that you may feel disinclined to pursue the subject with me. Yet from this undisciplined position I do discern two strands of science:
Where would you place the theoretical physics that is exemplified by such mathematical physicists as ... um ... Mr. Paul Davies, for example? In case you have not heard of him, he was awarded the 1995 ‘Templeton Prize for Progress in Religion’, which carried a monetary award of $1 million, for his efforts to resolve the dichotomy between science and religion. He initially becoming interested in the theory of quantum fields in curved space-time at the University of Cambridge – focussing much of his research in that area – and in the early seventies he joined fellow-physicists Mr. Stephen Hawking and Mr. Roger Penrose, who were researching the thermodynamic properties of black holes at the time. He published ‘The Physics of Time Asymmetry’ (1974), the first of more than 20 books directed to either his professional colleagues or the general public. Mr. Paul Davies’ most recent publications were ‘The Matter Myth’; then one of his most influential works, ‘The Mind of God’; followed by ‘About Time: Einstein’s Unfinished Revolution’ and ‘Are We Alone?’
RESPONDENT: Allow me to substitute another [illustration of what clarity means to my mind]: Richard tells me it is raining outside. I look out of the window and see it rain. Richard’s statement is clear to me.
RICHARD: Hmm ... this illustration is a far cry from ‘General Relativity says – take away matter and space vanishes as well’ would you not say? It falls distinctly into the commonsense category that Mr. Albert Einstein dismissed so cavalierly. Vis.: ‘Common notion is when you take away matter, space remains’ ... and you clearly endorsed his uncommon notion (General Relativity) as being clarity:
A trifle inconsistent, non? You did say, did you not:
Perhaps you could clarify something for me that I find illogical? I will give an example: I have a fruit bowl with one apple in it ... the apple is matter existing in the space delineated by the sides of the bowl. I take the apple (matter) out of the bowl ... and the space (delineated by the sides of the bowl) quite obviously remains. In fact, with the apple removed, there is more space in the bowl than before ... yet Mr. Albert Einstein would have me believe that the space vanishes! Now, as you so clearly understand that, when Richard says ‘it is raining outside’ and you look out of the window and see it rain, you know that Richard’s statement is clear to you. Does Richard’s statement ‘the space in the bowl quite obviously remains’ have the same clarity? I only ask because you enthusiastically endorsed Mr. Albert Einstein’s ‘take away matter and space vanishes as well’ statement by saying: ‘that, to my mind, is clarity’.
RESPONDENT: But I think you don’t need those illustrations as your writing is clear to me.
RICHARD: May I ask? Is my writing clear to you in the same way as Mr. Albert Einstein’s ‘take away matter and space vanishes as well’ statement is clear to you? Because, if it is then I doubt that you will comprehend such a simple question as this one: is it possible to be free of the human condition, here on earth, in this life-time, as this flesh and blood body?
RESPONDENT: So, back to your question – can one live peacefully with malice and sorrow in one’s heart – the answer is ‘no’.
RICHARD: Indeed not. And to think that all this while that Mr. Albert Einstein’s theories have been holding the public’s attention, Mr. Joseph LeDoux (www.cns.nyu.edu/home/ledoux/ ) has been hot on the trail of empirically finding the genetically inherited cause of all the wars and murders and rapes and tortures and domestic violence and child abuse and sadness and loneliness and grief and depression and suicides.
RICHARD: The psychiatric assessment was for the official record (I find it cute that an actual freedom from the human condition is classified as a severe psychotic disorder) and I wanted that fact on record.
RESPONDENT: Why did you want the fact on record?
RICHARD: Amongst other reasons: so that peoples with some remnants of commonsense left would be able to see the absurdity of the whole mental health profession ... to a certain extent the psychiatric/ psychological profession has become as powerful as the fundamentalist clergy of yore. To put it simply, a person who is said to be ‘egotistical’ is considered to be ... well ... not a nice person, and power-hungry egotist (megalomaniacs) who become dictators can plunge whole nations into bloody war. Ergo: eliminate the ego and the entire problem is dissolved. However, such a person is officially classified as ‘depersonalised’ and is diagnosed psychotic. Now I ask you: is it not the dictator who is psychotic?
I could go on through the other symptoms but I said I would put it simply ... I am only too happy to elaborate.
RESPONDENT: What part of you wanted it?
RICHARD: The intelligent ‘part’ that wants all the wars and murders and rapes and tortures and domestic violence and child abuse and sadness and loneliness and grief and depression and suicides to stop.
RESPONDENT: I was under the impression that these tests were taken after you had rid yourself of ego, and perhaps soul as well. Do I err here?
RICHARD: No, you do not err, the on-going assessment was after the identity in its totality became extinct.
RESPONDENT: So you are saying that it was done merely as an expose of the psychiatric/psychological profession and their conventional wisdom?
RICHARD: Not only that, no ... I covered many angles in my study of what other humans have made of weird and/or wonderful experience ... psychiatry and psychology were as equally valid an avenue to explore as physics or metaphysics, palaeontology or cosmogony, archaeology or sociology, philosophy or theology and so on. And I discovered that psychiatric medication and psychological counselling are designed to bring those who are suffering from any of three main psychotic categories (Bi-polar Disorder, Schizophrenia and Clinical Depression) and any neurotic sub-categories, back to a state of as near-normal functioning as possible (and ‘normal’ is categorised by Mr. Sigmund Freud as ‘common human unhappiness’). Therefore, I know for a fact that no psychiatric or psychological treatment would meet what any ‘I’ is wanting – peace and harmony and satisfaction and fulfilment and so on – because I found out, experientially (as I did in other fields) what was the extent and range of other human’s experience and solutions.
Psychology and psychiatry has failed just as dismally as philosophy and spirituality.
RESPONDENT: Just what does your examination accomplish?
RICHARD: It demonstrates that psychiatry and psychology do not have the answer to the problem of the human condition. And worse ... it actively works against anybody becoming free of the human condition with its attitude of helping to bring the ‘sick’ client back to a state of as near-normal functioning as possible.
RESPONDENT: ‘The human problem lies in the fact that we are both instinctual and intellectual by nature’.
RICHARD: Being ‘intellectual by nature’ is what sets the human animal apart from other animals ... the intellect is our most valuable asset in considering and communicating and is perhaps the most useful tool ever to emerge on this planet. It is an amazing thing that not only are we humans able to be here experiencing this business of being alive ... on top of that we can think about and reflect upon what is entailed in words. In addition to this ability, we can communicate our discoveries to one another – comparing notes as it were – and further our understanding with this communal input. One does not have to rely only upon one’s own findings; it is possible, as one man famous in history put it, to reach beyond the current knowledge by standing upon the shoulders of those that went before.
Without being ‘intellectual by nature’ there would never be peace-on-earth.
RESPONDENT: ‘This would not present a problem except that the intellect is ill equipped (inherently divisive) for the proper integration of the instinctual nature’.
RICHARD: I do demur ... the intellect is not ‘ill equipped (inherently divisive)’ at all. It is the feelings (emotions, passions and calentures) that infiltrate the intellect and cripple its clarity.
The Gurus and God-Men advocate sublimation and transcendence of ‘the instinctual nature’ (being divine) ... and it has failed. Psychiatrists and psychologists have proposed ‘the proper integration of the instinctual nature’ as being the way to go (being human) ... and it has failed.
There is a third alternative.
RESPONDENT: ‘Thus, instinctual drives are misinterpreted and misapplied by the intellect giving rise to the illusions that cloud our perception. And setting in motion the psychological dynamics that have evolved into the dominant human condition’.
RICHARD: Yes, the study of the ‘instinctual drives’ is largely over-looked and any information on the subject is surprisingly scant. The ‘Tabula Rasa’ doctrine still holds sway in many circles and other schools of thought cannot agree among themselves as to what is instinctual and what is not ... as epitomised in the ‘nature versus nurture’ debate. However, in all of my ad hoc reading on the subject over many years, there is some basic agreement as in regards the ‘freeze or flight or fight’ instincts (what I call ‘fear and aggression), the ‘propagation of the species’ instincts as epitomised by the sexual impulse (what I call ‘desire’) and the ‘protecting and nurturing’ instincts as epitomised by bonding (what I call ‘nurture). There are others like ‘territoriality’, ‘gregariousness’, ‘homing’ and so on, but for purposes of focussing on the nub of the issue I consistently keep to the four basic passions: fear and aggression (savage) and nurture and desire (tender).
And yes, ‘the illusions that cloud our perception’ reign supreme ... yet I am constantly amazed at what has been achieved despite the ‘Human Condition’, sometimes more sardonically referred to as the ‘Human Folly’. It is always a joy to go shopping, for example, so prolific is the supply of food available to all and sundry, at a reasonable cost. The shelves are stacked, from end to end, with a staggering array of viands from everywhere throughout the country ... indeed, from all over the world. Food-stuffs virtually tumble into my basket, so loaded are the shelves, and I am always extremely happy to be here, partaking of the goods that are the result of human endeavour. Now I fully realise that I, personally, live in a western society – a consumer society it is belittlingly called – but even the developing countries, with assistance from the west, are usually able to feed themselves these days ... when they are not at war, that is. With this proviso in mind, it is heartening to reflect upon the great strides humankind has made this century in terms of material well-being, compared with what transpired over the tens of thousands of years that humans have been inhabiting this planet.
Long gone are the days of the hunter-gatherer; days wherein the human race was at the mercy of the elements for their physical survival. Long gone are the times when humans had to eke out an animal-like existence; full bellies in a time of plenty, and starvation in a famine. Nowadays, when famine strikes one part of the world, aid in the form of basic provisions comes in from other areas experiencing plenty. In terms of the supply of goodies, I find that I am literally living in a veritable ‘Garden of Eden’. My every physical need is met with a bewildering array of abundance; it is a time of cornucopia, of which I am pleased to take full benefit as is my due.
I am astonished at the lack of appreciation displayed so vehemently by peoples I meet and articles I read about in the press. Why do the peoples of this country not realise that they are well-off, luxuriating in the freedom from want? Why are there looks of dissatisfaction on the faces of my fellow shoppers? Why do they have the temerity to complain when they are living in the land of plenty? Is there no way of pleasing these people? Fancy complaining about ‘having to do the shopping’ when it is such a delight to share in the benefits of human inventiveness; ingenuity in the face of the vagaries of the natural world. I am immensely appreciative of being alive now and not at some other age in which I would have had to struggle for my ‘daily bread’... those dreadful times one reads about in the history books and literary works. It is amazing what has been achieved despite the ‘Human Folly’.
Herein lies the clue to the lack of appreciation. Nothing can satisfy the discontent of a hubristic soul ... and all souls suffer from insolent contemptuousness towards the universe. People resent having to be here; they could be given whatever they demanded and they would still be not satisfied. Nothing, but nothing, can assuage the troubled identity, the psychological or psychic entity that has taken up a parasitical residence within the body of all the peoples inhabiting this planet. This alien entity – sometimes known as the ego and the soul – will spoil any enterprise, sabotage every endeavour and breed discontent and misery throughout its domain. It is the single reason for the ‘Human Condition’. Everyone I meet, every printed word I read, states that ‘you can’t change human nature’ and set about fiddling with the levers and controls in an ultimately useless attempt to ameliorate the human situation within the ‘Human Condition’ ... with less than perfect results.
Any action within ‘humanity’ as it is, is doomed to failure. Unless this fact can be grasped with both hands and taken on board to such an extent that it hits home deeply, nothing will change, radically. There will be changes around the edges; variations upon a familiar theme, but nothing structurally new, nothing even approaching the mutation-like change that is essential for the human race to fully appreciate the fullness and prosperity of being alive on this earth, in this era. To remain ‘human’ is to be a failure ... and to become ‘divine’ is to be a massive failure.
There is a third alternative.
RESPONDENT: ‘The propositions that we must rid ourselves or either instincts or the intellect are laughable. Neither one is possible nor desirable and are only attempts to escape the reality of our being. This only continues the current battle on another front and the violence continues, internally and externally’.
RICHARD: I can easily agree about the intellect ... but I obviously differ as in regards your view on instincts.
RESPONDENT: ‘The solution lies not in struggle, a propensity of both instinct and intellect, but in an unmoving awareness that allows our full nature to come into view and a third source of understanding to come into play, the intuition’.
RICHARD: Speaking personally, I have no intuition whatsoever ... that faculty disappeared in 1992 and I mourn not its departure. Nor have I the imaginative faculty ... I could not form an image if my life depended upon it.
RESPONDENT: ‘Please note, I am not talking about the confused notion of intuition that is rampant in new age circles, which is most often a mistaken attempt to return to a dependence on instincts. I am speaking about accessing an innate ‘intelligence’ that is already always functioning in the each of us and the universe as a whole’.
RICHARD: There is indeed an ‘innate ‘intelligence’ that is already always functioning in the each of us’ which I consistently call ‘native intelligence’. Its sagacity filters through despite the best attempts of the passions to swamp it with feeling-fed notions of ‘right’ and ‘wrong’ ... and is known in the ‘real world’ as ‘commonsense’. Thus ‘commonsense’, when freed of the grip of the instinctual passions, is what I call ‘native intelligence’.
RICHARD: Given that the population inhabiting this otherwise fair planet we all live on has reached an unprecedented and staggering 6,000,000,000 instinctually driven malicious and sorrowful and loving and compassionate human beings; given that technological expertise has multiplied exponentially in the last 100 years in a manner unprecedented in human history; given that 160,000,000 sane people were killed by their sane fellow human beings in wars alone in the last 100 years; given that 40,000,000 people committed suicide in the last 100 years; given that three weapons with an unprecedented mass destruction capacity – chemical, biological and nuclear – were developed in the last 100 years; given that the world-wide mass media and communication networks provide unprecedented access to information never before available to the average person; given that an unprecedented opportunity to carry out scholarly comparative religious studies has scotched the ‘wisdom’ myth ascribed to all the world’s scriptures; given that the Gurus and the God-Men, the Masters and the Messiahs, the Avatars and the Saviours and the Saints and the Sages have had at least 3,000 to 5,000 years to demonstrate the efficacy of their solution to all the ills of humankind ... and given that the internet has the capability of bypassing both official censorship and the self-censorship of commercial publishers and reaching instantaneously into savvy individual’s homes via the rapid copying and distribution capacity of mailing lists with their multiple feed-back facility, it was a timely discussion.
RESPONDENT: Perhaps, but who will benefit from it?
RICHARD: It will benefit anyone sufficiently motivated to explore, in an empirically-based way rather than a belief-based way, just what constitutes the ‘Human Condition’; it will benefit anyone already suspicious of what passes for wisdom in both the ‘real world’ and the ‘Greater Reality’ due to the absence of peace on earth after 3,000 to 5,000 years of recorded history; it will benefit anyone who still has some remnants of commonsense left and can think for themselves rather than allow themselves to be brow-beaten by vainglorious identities demanding unconditional surrender; it will benefit anyone who wishes to further their search into the area that lies beyond spiritual enlightenment (and any other form of an altered state of consciousness) because spiritual enlightenment has been demonstrated to suck badly; it will benefit anyone with sufficient acumen to discern, thanks to this modern era’s rapid and comprehensive publication and communications network, that the ‘Enlightened Beings’ have squandered their heyday as none of their gaffes and improprieties elude notice anymore; it will benefit anyone who has thus noticed that the ‘Enlightened Beings’ have fallen short of their own standards and who wants to know why they can continue to strut the world stage with apparent immunity to a sensible and valid critique; it will benefit anyone who has noticed that the ‘Enlightened Beings’ have failed to deliver the goods so readily pledged to a credulous humanity yet still command respect, loyalty, devotion, worship and total surrender of the integrity of otherwise intelligent people; it will benefit anyone astute enough to question the value of a promised peace obtained via a selfish desire for immortality in some dubious after-life at the cost of peace-on-earth ... and so on and so on.
To put it in a nut-shell ... it will benefit anyone who comprehends that the ending of malice and sorrow involves getting one’s head out of the clouds – and beyond – and coming down-to-earth where the flesh and blood bodies called human beings actually live; it will benefit anyone who sees that it is obvious that the solution to all the ills of humankind can only be found here in space and now in time as this physical body living in the world as-it-is with people as-they-are; it will benefit anyone who then sees that the fundamental question is whether it is actually possible to be free of the human condition, here on earth, in this life-time, as this flesh and blood body ... and it will benefit anyone who then asks themselves:
RESPONDENT: I would be very interested in your unique and valuable perspective on General Semantics, which, according to Korzybski, is ‘not any ‘philosophy’, or ‘psychology’, or ‘logic’, in the ordinary sense. It is a new extensional discipline which explains and trains us how to use our nervous systems most efficiently’.
RICHARD: I am all in favour of clarity in expression ... is there some aspect of ‘General Semantics’ which attracted your attention?
RESPONDENT: Yes; in particular it was one of the given definitions of General Semantics that caught my attention. ‘General semantics is the study of the relationship between words and people ...’. Robert Wanderer: www.generalsemantics.org/Education/gsdef.htm. It would seem to me that this email list is in essence an environment that relates words and people. As are all email lists.
RICHARD: Words are, of course, mutually agreed upon sounds referring to or a description of people, things and events for the purpose of communication. An E-Mail list such as this one, then, is an avenue wherein people can communicate with each other globally and, by sharing their experience of life, the universe and what it is to be a human being living in the world as-it-is with people as-they-are, thus further human knowledge and expertise. This knowledge and expertise may then be put to good use (as in ushering in peace-on-earth, in this life-time, as this flesh and blood body) ... which is what The Actual Freedom Mailing List is expressly set-up for.
Those people who wish to study the relationship between these words and the people who read them may come to notice that there is at least three possible outcomes in the dynamics of the connection: a reactive effect, a responsive effect ... and action.
I choose my words carefully and they are consciously designed for a specific effect: nothing I say is intended to produce a reactive effect ... all my words are sufficiently challenging to stimulate, motivate and initiate active investigation and responsive discussion. If someone reads them as being the reflection of a reactive personality – an identity – then the result they effect in themselves is a foregone conclusion: a reactive effect. This attitude (so well described by the respondent further above as ‘my disbelief of you or anyone claiming to be enlightened, or beyond, seems to have clouded my perception’), if held to their bosom tendentiously will preclude them from ever actually comprehending.
I do recall writing to you before that my writing is not intended to stand literary scrutiny for scholarly style and form and content and so on – the academics would have a field-day with it – rather it is an active catalyst which will catapult the reader, who reads with all their being, into this magical wonder-land that this verdant planet is.
RESPONDENT: Another definition also seems significant: ‘General semantics deals with our reactions to words, symbols, and to whatever happens to us; as distinguished from semantics, which deals with words and their meanings’. J. Samuel Bois. It is easy to overlook the fact that all we have in the space between us is an email list composed of words and that at each inbox there is a human sitting who reacts to the words.
RICHARD: Speaking personally, I never, ever overlook the fact that the words are written by a flesh and blood human being ... irregardless of whatever name, gender, age, place of birth or any other details which may or may not be factual. I only ever talk or write in order to communicate ... I do not talk because ‘I like the sound of my own voice’, as the saying goes (I never have an internal dialogue going on, for example, as I take perfection for granted).
KONRAD: Just another personal thing. I have been thinking a lot lately about the e-mail medium, and the difficulty to discover who or what is at the other end. The book told about so called split brain people. People, in whom the corpus callosum had been cut because of epilepsy. One of the phenomena was very remarkable, and threw light on my own misunderstanding of others. Whenever the right hemisphere, the silent one, performed an action, the left hemisphere just invented an explanation for this, so that it could pretend that it was still in command. The book went even so far as demonstrating, that maybe every conviction we have, even from persons who do not have a split brain is erected in that way. Or, to put it differently, whenever the right hemisphere performs an action that contradicts the convictions of the left hemisphere, this left hemisphere tries to ‘own’ these actions by adapting his convictions. If this is indeed so, it explains something I was also puzzled about. I have written to Vineeto, and explained to her that science is far more than common sense. And therefore its products are also far more than the application of common sense. To keep it simple for her I told her that it is common sense corrected by extensive and thorough logical analysis, and heavy mathematics.
RICHARD: Apart from the self-important over-tones in the assumption that any person other than a logician lacks the ability to understand straight-forward concepts, perhaps it would be of better use if you kept things simple for yourself, Konrad. Instead, you unnecessarily complicated what was an otherwise lucid E-Mail correspondence about human relationship and the utter failure of abstract logic to produce total peace and harmony, with involved, complex and convoluted cerebalisation. Indeed, fancy having to dress-up one’s native intelligence – commonsense is epitomised by sensible rationality and sensitive reason – with ‘extensive and thorough logical analysis and heavy mathematics’ in order to justify the way you avoided answering Vineeto’s very intelligible original question.
You have been trying this stunt with me for ages now ... and you just do not address the issue of the Human Condition and logic’s arrant failure in the area of human relationship. Vineeto did try again:
And your enlightened reply was:
Vineeto tried again ... I considered these sentences of hers to you very reasonable:
Oh well ... one can but try again, eh?
KONRAD: But if I am more precise I would say even this is not true. The products of science are the result of a fusion of the experiment principle, logic and mathematics.
RICHARD: I cannot resist ... it is your use of the word ‘fusion’ that prompts me to say that one of the ‘products of science’ is the nuclear bomb.
KONRAD: No common sense is even present in it.
RICHARD: In regard to the nuclear bomb ... no commonsense whatsoever.
KONRAD: On the contrary, one of the first things you learn as a science student is to distrust common sense.
RICHARD: Hmm ... are you so sure about that? Perhaps I can demonstrate something for you with the following process of logical deduction. Vis.:
Now, this is a simplistic syllogism, I know ... but it illustrates that even scientists have to use commonsense when it comes time to move from pure science to applied science (perhaps Vineeto was asking you about ‘applied science’ when she wrote: ‘how do your concepts translate into action in your daily life?’).
KONRAD: For the results of experiment, logic and mathematics are very, very often counterintuitive.
RICHARD: Maybe you need a definition for ‘common sense’ ... so that you may stop using only a ‘fusion of the experiment principle, logic and mathematics’ ... and add a very large dash of very essential commonsense.
KONRAD: I have received, since then, no answer from her. And I now understand why. For obviously my demonstration was irrefutable. Therefore it went against her feelings. The most simple thing to save her erroneous convictions is, of course, simply to ignore my argument. This is then probably done in the obvious way, by discrediting my person in her mind, and denying that my explanation deserves an answer.
RICHARD: Perhaps you may be beginning to realise, by now, just how difficult it is to break the long-standing habits ... in this case: fantasising. Or, to put it another way: methinks that you have jumped to a conclusion here and formed a picture about Vineeto based upon assumptions. You will have noticed by now that she did write back ... this E-Mail of yours and her latest to you crossed each other in transit.
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.