Actual Freedom – Selected Correspondence by Topic

Richard’s Selected Correspondence

On Sense and Sensible


RESPONDENT No. 78: It is sensible not to be wasteful, you suggest otherwise Richard?

RICHARD: As to not be wasteful is to be frugal, and as to suggest otherwise is to not advocate frugality, your query might be better addressed to a moralist, an ethicist, or a principlist.

RESPONDENT: I think the question was clear enough.

RICHARD: Aye ... and it can also be put another way, can it not? For an obvious example:

• [example only]: ‘It is silly to be wasteful, you suggest otherwise Richard?’ [end example].

Also:

• [example only]: ‘It is silly not to be frugal (or thrifty, parsimonious, or any other word of that ilk), you suggest otherwise Richard?’ [end example].

And:

• [example only]: ‘It is sensible to be frugal (or thrifty, parsimonious, and so forth), you suggest otherwise Richard?’ [end example].

Not that it makes any difference as the end result, no matter which way it is phrased, is that I am being asked to either agree or disagree with an all-embracing/all-encompassing statement/ assertion.

RESPONDENT: The reply is evasive.

RICHARD: My response is direct and to the point ... if (note ‘if’) I were to be drawn into turning the silly/ sensible appraisal, of each and every situation or circumstance, each and every moment again, into an all-inclusive/across-the-board value-laden approach to life – as a matter of principle (or an ethic/a moral) to live life by – I would be doing my fellow human being no favour.

In other words: I clearly and unambiguously decline to be sucked into participating in the corruption of a remarkably simple and effective moment-to moment way of appraising the vagaries of life.

RESPONDENT: I had to read it twice to actually get the grammar straight.

RICHARD: I was given a blanket statement/ assertion and invited to either agree or disagree ... perhaps if I were to use the word ‘since’ and ‘because’ instead of ‘as’ it might be straight for you at first read:

• Since ‘not to be wasteful’ is to be frugal, and because to ‘suggest otherwise’ is to advocate frugality, your query might be better addressed to a moralist, an ethicist, or a principalist.

RESPONDENT: The question, as I understand it, was whether being wasteful is a sensible attitude, given the limitations of natural resources etc.

RICHARD: My co-respondent had prefaced their query with two evaluations I was in no position to assess for myself – that they know many [quote] ‘sensible human beings’ [endquote] who would consider themselves environmentalists and whom are [quote] ‘just acting sensibly’ [endquote] about environmental sustainability – and a sweeping statement/assertion (as in the ‘it is sensible not to be wasteful’ phrasing further above) so I responded to the only reference to sensibility I could meaningfully comment upon.

As for your ‘given the limitations of natural resources’ comment: that is another subject entirely ... and one I was not asked about.

RESPONDENT: He did not ask whether it is ‘ethical’ or ‘good’, etc., just whether it was sensible.

RICHARD: The whole point of the silly/ sensible appraisal of one’s thoughts/ actions is to not fall into the trap of living each moment with pre-digested beliefs/ factoids as values – to be open (to put it into the jargon) each moment again to what is actually the case (to what is factual) in each and every situation – yet I was being asked to do just that.

The problem with values – be they morals, ethics, principles (or cultural standards/mores in general) – is that they can, and do on occasion, make one myopic and if one cannot determine fact from fancy in the ‘outer world’ what then of determining same in the ‘inner world’ whilst on the wide and wondrous path to an actual freedom from the human condition?

What I have found, again and again, is that when one starts sincerely investigating something one soon finds that facts are remarkably thin on the ground.

*

RESPONDENT: The reply is evasive.

RICHARD: My response is direct and to the point ... if (note ‘if’) I were to be drawn into turning the silly/ sensible appraisal, of each and every situation or circumstance, each and every moment again, into an all-inclusive/ across-the-board value-laden approach to life – as a matter of principle (or an ethic/a moral) to live life by – I would be doing my fellow human being no favour. In other words: I clearly and unambiguously decline to be sucked into participating in the corruption of a remarkably simple and effective moment-to moment way of appraising the vagaries of life.

RESPONDENT: Simple, or ... simplistic.

RICHARD: Ahh ... I always like it when someone says something like that as it shows that they are beginning to take notice that when I say naiveté I mean naiveté.

Maybe its very simplicity is why its import escapes the notice of sophisticates?

RESPONDENT: You have a pension, your needs are taken care of. You don’t NEED to be sucked in.

RICHARD: There are, essentially, five basic needs: air, water, food, shelter and clothing (if the weather be inclement) and I ensured that those needs – and those of five others when I was a husband and father – were met all throughout my working life ... just because I am now retired and on a pension has nothing to do with declining to be sucked into participating in the corruption of a remarkably simple and effective moment-to moment way of appraising the vagaries of life.

And I say this because the silly/ sensible appraisal, of each and every situation or circumstance, each and every moment again, was first devised in 1981 when I was a married man, with four children, running my own business, with a house mortgage to pay off and a car on hire purchase, working twelve-fourteen hour days, six-seven days a week, and with a vested interest in no longer maintaining/ perpetuating a social identity (aka a conscience) by living life according to all the beliefs, ideas, theories, concepts, maxims, dictums, truths, factoids, philosophies, values, principles, ideals, standards, credos, doctrines, tenets, canons, morals, ethics, customs, traditions, psittacisms, superstitions, myths, legends, folklores, imaginations, divinations, visions, fantasies, chimeras, illusions, delusions, hallucinations, phantasmagoria and any other of the social schemes and dreams and cultural precepts and mores which constitute the familial/tribal/national conditioning process ... the universal brainwashing technique euphemistically known as socialisation/ acculturation.

RESPONDENT: But people whose habitats are being destroyed because the rich need more oak for their bed stands, ...

RICHARD: As the remainder of your sentence was cut off I am unable to discern where you are going with this/what point it is you are making.

RESPONDENT: (...) The ellipsis in the paragraph which you didn’t get, means the following: For people whose comfort is endangered by the wasteful ways of the rich and powerful, ‘getting sucked in’ or not into the debate about whether being wasteful is sensible or not is not a matter of choice, it is a matter of avoiding actual pain and misery, and hence, unavoidable. That was my statement.

RICHARD: Let me see if I understand what you are wanting to communicate: I was asked whether I suggested otherwise to it being sensible not to be wasteful and, because I decline to be sucked into participating in the corruption of a remarkably simple and effective moment-to moment way of appraising the vagaries of life, you state that people whose comfort is endangered by the wasteful ways of the rich and powerful have no choice about [quote] ‘the debate’ [endquote] whether being wasteful is sensible or not as it is unavoidable (due to it being a matter of avoiding actual pain and misery). Whilst I appreciate you informing me of this I must ask what it has to do with me as I am not, repeat not, having a debate about whether being wasteful is sensible or not ... it is a matter of verifiable fact that I suggested such a topic might be better addressed to a moralist, an ethicist, or a principlist.

RESPONDENT: If you see a debate about wastefulness and frugality to be a corruption of your happy state, then your happy state is quite fragile.

RICHARD: I have used the word ‘corruption’ seven times in the three e-mails preceding this one – all in the same or similar sentence – and here is an example (from one of the two instances further above):

• [Richard]: ‘In other words: I clearly and unambiguously decline to be sucked into participating in the corruption of *a remarkably simple and effective moment-to moment way of appraising the vagaries of life*’. [emphasis added].

How you can even consider for one moment that the corruption of [quote] ‘a way of appraising the vagaries of life’ [endquote] could possibly mean ‘a corruption of your happy state’ has got me beat ... especially as the ‘in other words’ refers that sentence back to my immediately preceding explanation that if (note ‘if’) I were to be drawn into turning the silly/ sensible appraisal, of each and every situation or circumstance, each and every moment again, into an all-inclusive/ across-the-board value-laden approach to life – as a matter of principle (or an ethic/a moral) to live life by – I would be doing my fellow human being no favour.

Incidentally, the happiness and harmlessness – a freedom from malice and sorrow and, thus, their antidotal pacifiers love and compassion – which ensues upon an actual freedom from the human condition is not a ‘state’ as there are no states here in this actual world ... the (affective) ‘being’ who has/is such states is extinct.


RESPONDENT: d) my sense organs are picking up on something with is fundamentally fraudulent in you.

RICHARD: Ah, now you get to the nitty-gritty of what all this inefficient-confusing-unpleasing-cheesy-corny business is really about, eh?

RESPONDENT: I am very willing to accept any of these options are true because they have all been true in the past.

RICHARD: Surely you do not go about determining whether each and every person is fundamentally fraudulent or not by their taste in graphic design and electronic tones? If so, since when has your taste in same been adjudged to be sterling (and by whom and under what criteria)?

RESPONDENT: However here, as yet, I have no idea what the answer might be and would appreciate (and investigate) any assistance you have.

RICHARD: Hmm ... how could assistance from somebody so fundamentally fraudulent as to have an inefficient/confusing/unpleasing/cheesy/corny website layout, and the most appalling middle-of-the-road and jarringly crudely recorded cheesy and corny (according to the dictionaries) music on same, possibly be to your benefit?

RESPONDENT: I tried to explain that I am not certain that you are fraudulent (I gave it as one of four options –

RICHARD: Here are your other three options:

• [Respondent]: ‘Either this [that a few pages on your site are accompanied by *the* most appalling cheesy and corny (according to the dictionary) jarringly crudely recorded versions of middle-of-the-road songs I quite like themselves] is because a) my taste is irrelevant, b) my taste is wrong c) you have chosen this poor music (and the poor layout mentioned last time) for some devilishly subtle reason’. [emphasis added].

As (a) your taste is indeed irrelevant in terms of forming that objective judgement which your usage of that (now highlighted) definite article/determiner indicates and (b) as what is aesthetically appealing to one person is as equally aesthetically appalling to another you are on a hiding to nowhere pursuing that line of reasoning and (c) as that particular music (and a specific layout) was chosen for an entirely prosaic reason then the only option left standing is option (d) ... to wit:

• [Respondent]: ‘my sense organs are picking up on something with is fundamentally fraudulent in you’. [endquote].

RESPONDENT: ... [I gave it as one of four options –] and given my pleasure at the actual written content – which I might not have adequately expressed – an option no more important than the others ...

RICHARD: As the others – (a), (b) and (c) – are demonstrably options without substance your follow-up comments add nothing to a sensible discussion. Furthermore, as you have elsewhere fleshed out just how much your particular taste plays a big part in your life it is disingenuous, to say the least, to now claim that you tried to explain you are not certain whether I am fundamentally fraudulent because of my choice of particular electronic tones (and a specific layout).

Just by the way ... are you aware of the difference betwixt electronic tones and instrumental notes?

RESPONDENT: ... and that I am not certain of my tastes.

RICHARD: It has nothing to do with being certain of your tastes ... aesthetic appreciation, varying as it does from person to person, cannot ever be objective.

RESPONDENT: Perhaps I don’t really feel that, or I didn’t express myself accurately enough.

RICHARD: Oh, you express yourself quite accurately ... are you familiar with the word ‘fastidious’? Vis.:

• ‘fastidious: scrupulous or overscrupulous in matters of taste, cleanliness, propriety, etc.; squeamish [excessively fastidious or scrupulous in questions of propriety, honesty, etc.]’. (Oxford Dictionary).

RESPONDENT: Either way I am sure that I don’t understand what taste is or why it seems so pleasurable (a well-made salad dressing; not too this, not too that ...) and informative (the subtle manifest tip of the ice-burg of psyche), yet superficial (my taste is always changing) and deceptive (I still make extremely poor taste judgements; poor to who? To me a bit later). Where does taste come from?

RICHARD: From perception (sentience) itself ... the word ‘aesthetics’ is derived from the Greek ‘aisthētikos’, from ‘aisthēta’ (meaning ‘things perceptible by the senses’), which comes from ‘aisthesthai’ (meaning ‘perceive’).

Aesthetics are, fundamentally, based upon the human body and its relationship with the environment at large: this flesh and blood body, for instance, is of the male gender; has a heterosexual orientation; is of Caucasian stock; and is 6’ 2" high and weighs 12.5 stone ... change any of those bodily characteristics and aesthetic appreciation alters accordingly.

Further to that point, the quality, quantity and disposition of photosensitive receptors called rods (about 130 million cells which detect size, shape, brightness and movement) and cones (about 7 million cells which detect fine detail and colour) in the retinas varies from body to body and affects visual appreciation ... colour blindness being the most obvious instance. Similarly for auditory appreciation the range of frequency (hertz), or pitch, and intensity of tone (decibels), or loudness, can vary from person-to-person ... the phrase ‘tone-deaf’ bespeaks of the most extreme example. Also gastronomic appreciation (flavour) depends not only upon the quality, quantity and disposition of the taste buds (papillae) on the tongue, palate and throat/larynx but upon the olfactory and tactile receptors as well – flavour is actually a combination of texture, temperature, taste and smell (the coolness of peppermint, the ‘bite’ of mustard or pepper, the warmth of cloves, and the astringency of spinach are all tactile, or touch, sensations of the lips, tongue and mouth in general) – and a surprisingly large number of people have some degree of ‘taste-blindness’.

Consequently, just as I do not even attempt to adjudge anybody according to my tastes (the aesthetic appreciation which this flesh and blood body enjoys), when someone seeks to impose their tastes on me – which also includes instinctual drives and, most likely, unexamined cultural aesthetics/fashionable vogues as well – it all slides off me like water off a duck’s back.


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 veranda 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.

And all because what I was saying was actual.


RESPONDENT: PCE = pure consciousness experience. Pure consciousness means that does not exist self right?

RICHARD: Yes, neither ‘I’ (as ego) nor ‘me’ (as soul) are present where consciousness – the condition of being conscious – is a pure consciousness ... the word ‘pure’ in this context means the unadulterated condition of being conscious and the word ‘conscious’ means being alive, not dead, awake, not asleep, and sensible, not insensible (comatose).

RESPONDENT: Now by adding the word experience, the question that arises is who has the experience?

RICHARD: Why does that question arise? To be conscious is to be experiencing (perceiving) as perceiving (experiencing) is what the very word means at is most basic. For example:

• [Respondent]: ‘You always are covering behind the word ‘apperceptively aware’. How you know you are alive? Do you have any other mean except thought to know it?
• [Richard]: ‘Yes ... you will see, upon re-reading my response (above) regarding proprioception, that I clearly say the sense of being here, in space, as a body is not just because of sight (visual perception), sound (auditory perception), touch (cutaneous perception), smell (olfactory perception), and taste (gustatory perception) but proprioception as well.
And sensory perception is what consciousness is at its most basic ... perception means consciousness (aka awareness). Vis.:
• ‘perception: the state of being or process of becoming aware or conscious of a thing, spec. through any of the senses; the faculty of perceiving; an ability to perceive; [synonyms: (...) awareness, consciousness]. (Oxford Dictionary).
And consciousness means sentience. Vis.:
• ‘sentience: the condition or quality of being sentient; consciousness, susceptibility to sensation’. (Oxford Dictionary).
And sentience is direct, immediate (sensate perception is primary; affective perception is secondary; cognitive perception is tertiary). (July 17 2003).

RESPONDENT: [... who has the experience?] The body?

RICHARD: The body is not ‘who’ has the experience... the body is *what* has the experience (of being unadulteratedly conscious) as the condition of being conscious is a bodily condition.

RESPONDENT: The body works with the senses.

RICHARD: That is one way of putting it but as sentience means being sensorial it would be more helpful for comprehension of what experiencing means to say that the body works as the senses: for instance, of all the senses – cutaneous, ocular, aural, olfactory, gustatory, and proprioceptive – the cutaneal sense, being by far the largest of all senses (the skin covers the entire body) is what defines/delineates where the body stops and the rest of the world begins/where the rest of the world stops and the body begins ... the skin is the main demarcation line, so to speak, thus cutaneous experiencing is major experiencing by any definition.

RESPONDENT: If we must attach to the body even the consciousness, then we can go very far.

RICHARD: That just does not make sense: consciousness – the condition of a body being conscious – is indistinguishable from what a body is (when it is alive, awake, and sensible) ... to say that consciousness is something attached to the body is to imply that consciousness (the condition of being conscious) is a clip-on, a removable accessory, as it were.

RESPONDENT: We may have any illusion and blame the body for that.

RICHARD: Yea verily ... anything but put the ‘blame’ onto where it really lies (on the ‘being’ within the body), eh?


RICHARD: Which means: what is preventing the PCE from happening ... right now?

RESPONDENT: It is almost like the question is assuming that it is not happening ...

RICHARD: The question is not ‘assuming that it is not happening’ ... the question is only because it is indeed not happening.

RESPONDENT: Why do you make reference to what is not, then?

RICHARD: Because it is indeed not happening, it is not an assumption, it is a fact ... and a seminal fact at that.

RESPONDENT: Silly!

RICHARD: Indeed ... 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 are happening only because peoples would rather be silly than sensible. And to be in a state of denial about ‘my’ culpability is not only individually silly (personally insalubrious), but communally silly (socially reprehensible) as well.

RESPONDENT: What is happening now? (And don’t begin by assuming it’s not a PCE, please).

RICHARD: It is not an assumption ... and it has a global occurrence as well. I having been discussing these matters with many, many people for nineteen years now – and have been scouring the books to no avail – and, until I come across evidence to the opposite, what is happening now is that each and every person is being run by the instinctual passions (the origin of ‘self’) genetically endowed by blind nature at conception. Thus each and every person is missing out on the peace-on-earth that is already always right here at this place in infinite space right now at this moment in eternal time ... as is evidenced in a PCE (and the PCE has a global occurrence also).


RESPONDENT: So you say everything is fate, correct?

RICHARD: No ... there is scope for action which affects events.

RESPONDENT: You would not judge me if I bomb the world, because ‘killing’ for feeding oneself is the ‘law of nature’. It’s what there is.

RICHARD: The human animal, being able to think, reflect, plan, can implement considered action for benevolent reasons ... no other animal can do this. Thus human beings, over countless years, have formulated agreements as in regards common goals and behaviour for mutual benefit. Thus it is sensible to comply with the legal laws and observe the social protocols. So, of course I would judge you for not acting in a mutually beneficial way – I am not silly – although I am more interested in pointing the finger at a person feeling – and thus thinking – in a non-mutually beneficial way.

There are already enough people censuring behaviour.


RESPONDENT: To ask and stay aware of what I am experiencing now is mindfulness.

RICHARD: The word ‘mindfulness’ is an English word that means ‘taking heed or care; being conscious or aware; paying attention to, being heedful of, being watchful of, being regardful of, being cognizant of, being aware of, being conscious of, taking into account, being alert to, being alive to, being sensible of, being careful of, being wary of, being chary of’ and may be used, more or less, the same as ‘watchfulness’, ‘heedfulness’, ‘regardfulness’, ‘attentiveness’, and to a lesser extent ‘carefulness’, ‘sensibleness’, ‘wariness’. However, the word ‘mindfulness’ has taken-on the Buddhist meaning of the word for most seekers (the same as the word ‘meditation’ which used to mean ‘think over; ponder’), and no longer has the every-day meaning as per the dictionary. The Buddhist connotations come from the Pali ‘Bhavana’ (the English translation of the Pali ‘Vipassana Bhavana’ is ‘Insight Meditation’). ‘Bhavana’ comes from the root ‘Bhu’, which means ‘to grow’ or ‘to become’. There fore, ‘Bhavana’ means ‘to cultivate’, and, as the word is always used in reference to the mind, ‘Bhavana’ means ‘mental cultivation’. ‘Vipassana’ is derived from two roots: ‘Passana’, which means ‘seeing’ or ‘perceiving’ and ‘Vi’ (which is a prefix with the complex set of connotations) basically means ‘in a special way’ but there also is the connotation of both ‘into’ and ‘through’. The whole meaning of the word ‘Vipassana’, then, is looking into something with meticulousness discernment, seeing each component as distinct and separate, and piercing all the way through so as to perceive the most fundamental reality of that thing. This process leads to intuition into the basic reality of whatever is being inspected. Put it all together and ‘Vipassana Bhavana’ means the cultivation of the mind, aimed at seeing in a special way that leads to intuitive discernment and to full understanding of Mr. Gotama the Sakyan’s basic precepts. In ‘Vipassana Bhavana’, Buddhists cultivate this special way of seeing life. They train themselves to see reality exactly as it is described by Mr. Gotama the Sakyan, and in the English-speaking world they call this special mode of perception: ‘mindfulness’.

Which is why I have never advocated ‘using mindfulness as a methodical approach to awakening’ because ‘mindfulness’ is clearly a Buddhist term and involves a total withdrawal from the sensate world so as to realise the ‘timeless’ (which is another term I never use), apart from which, to awake from a dream is but to be lucidly dreaming ... the ‘dreamer’ must become extinct. And how to bring about extinction? By asking oneself, each moment again, how one is experiencing this moment of being alive. Given that this is one’s only moment of being alive, if one is not experiencing the peace-on-earth that is already always here now, then one is wasting this moment of being alive by settling for second-best ... it means that the long evolutionary process that produced this flesh and blood human being has come to naught. But, here is another moment, another opportunity, to actually be here now – where one’s destiny is – and how is one experiencing this moment? More often than not one is experiencing this moment through a feeling – standing back and feeling it out like putting a toe into the water – instead of jumping-in boots and all. Thus one can find out what brought about this feeling that is preventing me from being here now and through this ‘hands-on’ examination have it vanish ... and the reward is immediate and direct.

This actualist method is a far cry from the Buddhist carefully cultivated ‘mindfulness’ ... which is a further withdrawal from this actual world.

RESPONDENT: If it is a technique to bring about a desired result such as self-immolation or freedom from conditioned reaction, it is effort at self-mastery in which the old me is gone and the desired state only remains, i.e.: attainment.

RICHARD: Goodness me, no ... ‘self-mastery’ is all about imposing discipline, order, regulation, control, restraint, obedience and so on. Psychological and psychic self-immolation is self-sacrifice ... how can it be seen by you as ‘self-mastery’?

You are stretching a long bow, here.


RESPONDENT: That calls for projecting and labelling.

RICHARD: Why? What about seeing, insight, realisation? Why can one not have a direct perception into the nature of the self that does not ‘lend itself to dis-ease’ or is not ‘subject to change’?

RESPONDENT: If the false is seen as false, there is only what is.

RICHARD: Aye ... and ‘what is’ is the unchanging and incorruptible ... the ‘Timeless Self’.

RESPONDENT: And there is no one that stands apart to observe and name.

RICHARD: There is no ‘standing apart’, true ... but the less coy mystics call this holistic identity by its given name: ‘I am God’ or ‘I am That’. The more coy mystics say: ‘There is only That’ ... and look towards physical death’s release into completion. Vis.:

• [quote]: ‘disenchanted with the body, disenchanted with feeling, disenchanted with perception, disenchanted with fabrications, disenchanted with consciousness. Disenchanted, he becomes dispassionate. Through dispassion, he is fully released. With full release, there is the knowledge, ‘Fully released’. He discerns that ‘Birth is depleted, the holy life fulfilled, the task done. There is nothing further for this world’.’ [endquote].

Note well it says ‘there is nothing further for this world’ ... if that is not a clear indication of a total withdrawal from this sensible material world into the senseless immaterial world I would like to know what is. So, the multitudinous scriptures consistently point to a total withdrawal from this sensate physical world. Mr. Gotama the Sakyan’s advice is for a total disassociation from the world of people, things and events. Mr. Gotama the Sakyan expressly states that the self is not to be found anywhere in phenomenal existence ... so it is up to you substantiate your ‘observation’ that:

• [Respondent]: ‘no, that is a misunderstanding’. [endquote].

Can you address the question directly without throwing in this smoke-screen of side issues?


RESPONDENT: Now, you say the instincts must and can be removed. I say this is impossible. You say you have done it. I say what you have done is to unravel the intertwined drives/thoughts that resulted in a confused feeling and mental capacity. It is the emotional confusion that has been cleared away, not the instincts.

RICHARD: Hmm ... the emotional confusion comes, of course, primarily from the emotions; the emotions come from the instinctual passions all sentient beings are born with. Ergo: eliminate the instinctual passions and there are no emotions to cause confusion. As it is impossible to be a ‘stripped-down’ self – divested of emotions – for ‘I’ am ‘my’ emotions and ‘my’ emotions are ‘me’, then anyone who attempts this absurdity would wind up being somewhat like what is known in psychiatric terminology as a ‘sociopathic personality’ (popularly know as ‘psychopath’). Such a person still has emotions – ‘cold’, ‘callous’, ‘indifferent’ – and has repressed the others. My whole point is to cease ‘being’ – psychologically and psychically self-immolate – which means that the entire psyche itself is extirpated. That is, the biological instinctual package handed out by blind nature is deleted like a computer software programme (but with no ‘Recycle Bin’ to retrieve it from) so that the affective faculty is no more. Then – and only then – are there no emotions ... just as in a pure consciousness experience (PCE) where, with the self in abeyance, the emotions play no part at all.

Unless you are proposing that emotions can be ‘clean’ and ‘pure’ and ‘clear’?

RESPONDENT: I expect you still eat when you are hungry.

RICHARD: Yes.

RESPONDENT: You seek shelter or other safety in physically threatening conditions.

RICHARD: Yes.

RESPONDENT: Do you still have sexual relations?

RICHARD: Yes.

RESPONDENT: You certainly seem to have the capacity to care for others.

RICHARD: Yes.

RESPONDENT: Do you take actions to protect your property from theft?

RICHARD: Yes.

RESPONDENT: Have you a copy right on your published materials?

RICHARD: Yes.

RESPONDENT: Would you knowingly walk into a life threatening situation for no good cause?

RICHARD: No ... and probably not for a ‘good cause’ either.

RESPONDENT: You may call these the actions of ‘native intelligence’ and I would agree ... but they are actions that stem from the instincts as they have been properly integrated through understanding.

RICHARD: How on earth can one ‘properly integrate’ fear and aggression (savage) and nurture and desire (tender)?

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 in this very air I live in, I am constantly aware of it; 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.

It don’t come bigger that that!


RESPONDENT No. 20: Would you say that belief systems are always muddled?

RESPONDENT: This would be rather self-defeating would it not? If all belief systems are muddled, then of course the belief system claiming this would be muddled and therefore of limited value in determining the ‘muddledness’ of every belief system.

RICHARD: This paragraph evinced two replies, viz.:

• [Respondent No. 31]: ‘Good point. Even the ‘muddledness’ may be a belief’.
• [Respondent No. 20]: ‘Yes, quite so’.

Are you so sure, No. 31, that this is a ‘good point’? No. 20, is this actually ‘quite so’? No. 14 has been getting away this ploy in many posts ... when pressed to justify his belief about something he counters with the presumption that the other person’s question – be it factual or not – is nothing but their belief. This is so similar to that clever under-graduate sophistry so prevalent in Universities when students start ‘thinking for themselves’ that I am astounded that someone would contemplate using it on this List (where the participants are purportedly conducting an honest and genuine discussion about an investigation into life, the universe and what it is to be a human being living in this world as it is with people as they are). To wit:

• Student No. 1. ‘There is no absolute truth’.
• Student No. 2. ‘But that statement is an absolute truth’.

So, perhaps it is worthwhile pursuing the question: ‘are all belief systems muddled?’ after all. For No. 14’s position vis a vis the Human Condition reminds of a discussion I once had with a man who made a living running one of those New-Age ‘Avatar’ courses for gullible sophisticates whose current belief system is not working for them and are desirous of substituting another which might work better. When I asked him the value of swapping one belief for another – and would people not be better served by seeing through any belief for the delusion that it was and being here in actuality – he replied that everything was a belief. So I pointed out the sun in the sky ... he said he believed it was there. When I indicated a tree ... one could only believe it existed. And when I referred to the grass of the lawn we were standing on he forestalled my further questioning ... all is believed to be existing. When I asked him about himself as a flesh and blood male standing talking with me – as another flesh and blood male – this he also dismissed as ‘I believe I am a man’. When I invited him to drop his trousers and examine some irrefutable evidence of maleness he declined ... the conversation deteriorated somewhat about here. Especially when I managed to stop rolling around on the imputed grass and gathered the strength to ask him to redefine the words ‘Factual’ and ‘Actual’ ... along with ‘Tangible’, ‘Sensible’, ‘Palpable’, ‘Obvious’, Apparent, ‘Manifest’, ‘Unmistakable’, ‘Tactile’, ‘Sensual’, ‘Sensation’ and a few dozen others of a like nature.

Now, No. 14 is a self-confessed solipsist and therefore everything he says about anything at all is intrinsically consistent with whatever there is ... within his ‘I Am It’ philosophy. (Mr. Leo Tolstoy went through a period of solipsism and wrote at length about his experience which I personally found edifying when I experienced a period of extreme subjectivity whilst living in the Himalayas in 1984).Thus, one wonders who it is that he thinks that he writes to on this List ... because the recipients do not actually exist in solipsism. This post you are now reading has no facticity and No. 31 and No. 20 and Richard are nothing but fragments of his imagination ... we have no inherent existence. Therefore, what is he doing by – in effect – talking to himself (and this he is, be there no doubt about that, because he often says that he is ‘glad to be around as you’)? The faintest of clues may very well be emerging in that he has just recently allowed that schizophrenia is actual ... although ‘possibly not internally consistent’.

I guess we will never know and I have communicated in the past and whenever the going gets rigorous he answers with either a ‘Be well Richard’ or a ‘I love you dearly Richard’ and packs up his notebooks and goes home. A pity in a way ... maybe he could have helped by explaining away those (shudder) sensate words.

Etymologically, belief means: ‘fervently wish to be true’, and actual means: ‘already occurring; existing as factually true’.


RESPONDENT: That which is alive can hardly breath without bringing harm or destruction to some aspect of the environment, yes? The whole exercise of personal existence must be a heavy measure on the side of silliness when a larger view is taken toward its effect. Does it not seem silly that this body should eat while another starves?

RICHARD: The very fact that one is alive means consuming nutrients ... and staying alive means that something, somewhere, must die in order to supply these nutrients. This is a fact of life ... and the marvellous thing about a fact is that one can not argue with it. One can argue about a belief, an opinion, a theory, an ideal and so on ... but a fact: never. One can deny a fact – pretend that it is not there – but once seen, a fact brings freedom from choice and decision. Most people think and feel that choice implies freedom – having the freedom to choose – but this is not the case. Freedom lies in seeing the obvious, and in seeing the obvious there is no choice, no deliberation, no agonising over the ‘Right’ and ‘Wrong’ judgement. In the freedom of seeing the fact there is only action.

When it comes to the consumption of nutrients there are many and various beliefs one can hold dearly to. There are people who will not eat red meat at all ... only white meat and fish. Then there are people who will not eat any flesh of warm-blooded animals at all ... only fish and reptiles. Then there are people (vegetarians) who will not eat any meat at all, but will consume eggs and dairy products. Then there are people (vegans) who will eat only vegetables, grain and seed. Then there are people (fruitarians) who will only eat fruit. Then – as we go into myth and fantasy – there are those who live on water and air ... and finally those who live on air only.

Some vegetarians maintain that as a carrot (for example) does not scream audibly when it is pulled from the ground there is no distress caused by the consumption of vegetables. Yet the carrot indubitably dies slowly by being extracted from its life-support system – the ground is its home – and is this not distressing on some level of a living, growing organism? It all depends upon the level, or degree, of ‘aliveness’ that one ascribes to things. Vegans, for instance, will not consume eggs as this prevents an incipient life from being born. Fruitarians go one step further and say that, as the consumption of carrots prevents them from going to seed and sprouting new life, vegetables are to be eschewed entirely. Then, as the eating of grain and seeds also prevent potential life-forms from growing, they will eat only the flesh of the fruit that surrounds the kernel and plant out the embryo plant-form. (I have been a fruitarian so I know full well what I am speaking of.)

The obvious fact is clearly demonstrated by taking all this to its ultimate consideration. What will one do – as a fruitarian causing no pain or the taking of life of anyone or anything – about those pesky things like mosquitoes, sand-flies, cockroaches, rats, mice and other ‘vermin’ that invade my house? Put up screens? What about outside? Will I slap them dead ... or just shoo them away? What will one do if attacked by a snake, a crocodile, a shark, a lion and so on? Do as the Revered Scriptures say and turn the other cheek? Will I humbly submit to my fate and be mauled severely myself – or even killed – simply because of a religious injunction, a moral scruple, a noble ideal, a virtuous belief, a passionate opinion, a deeply held ethical theory? In other words, have animals and insects been given the right, by some inscrutable god, to do with me whatsoever they wish? Is my survival dependent upon the non-existent benevolence of all those sentient beings that I am not going to cause distress to?

What then about germs, bacteria, bacillus, microbes, pathogens, phages, viruses and so on? Are they not entitled to remain alive and pain free? If one takes medication for disease, one is – possibly painfully – killing off the microscopic creatures that one’s body is the host too. Some religions – the Jain religion in India, for example – has its devout members wearing gauze over their nose and mouths to prevent insects from flying in and they even carry small brooms to sweep the path as they walk so that they will not accidentally step on some creature. It can really get out of hand. For instance, small-pox has been eradicated from the world by scientists as a means of saving countless human lives ... is this somehow ‘Wrong’? What is ‘Right’ in regards to what I do in order to stay alive? If I do none of these things then I will be causing pain and suffering to myself – and I am a sentient being too. It is an impossible scenario, when pursued to its ultimate conclusion.

And then there is the matter of one’s fellow human beings. Some of them – in fact at times a lot of them – are desirous of invading the country that one is living peacefully in, with the avowed intent of killing, torturing, raping, pillaging and subjugating oneself and one’s fellow citizens. If one holds a strong and passionate belief in not causing any pain and suffering to other sentient beings then one must be more than a fruitarian ... one must be a pacifist as well. This amounts to hanging out a sign – if everybody else in the country one lives in adopts this specific belief – which says, in effect: ‘Please feel free to invade us, we will not fight back, for we hold firmly to the principle of not causing pain and suffering to any sentient being whatsoever’ (the Tibetan situation is a particular case in point.) Thus anarchy would rule the world – all because of a belief system handed down by the Saints and the Sages, the Messiahs and the Avatars, the Redeemers and the Saviours, the Prophets and the Priests, century after century.

All this is predicated upon there being an enduring ‘I’ that is going to survive the death of the body and go on into the paradisiacal After-Life that is ‘my’ post-mortem reward for being a ‘good’ person during ‘my’ sojourn on this planet earth. It is ‘I’ who is the ‘believer’, it is ‘I’ who will cause this flesh-and-blood body to go into all manner of contorted and convoluted emotion-backed thoughts as to what is ‘Right’ and what is ‘Wrong’, what is ‘Good’ and what is ‘Bad’. If it were not for the serious consequences of all this passionate dreaming it would be immensely humorous, for ‘I’ am not actual ... ‘I’ am an illusion. And any grand ‘I’ that supposedly survives death by being ‘Timeless and Spaceless’, ‘Unborn and Undying’, ‘Immortal and Eternal’ am but a delusion born out of that illusion. Thus any After-Life is a fantasy spun out of a delusion born out of an illusion ... as I am so fond of saying.

When ‘I’ am no longer extant there is no ‘believer’ inside the mind and heart to have any beliefs or disbeliefs. As there is no ‘believer’, there is no ‘I’ to be harmful ... and one is harmless only when one has eliminated malice – what is commonly called evil – from oneself in its entirety. That is, the ‘dark side’ of human nature which requires the maintenance of a ‘good side’ to eternally combat it. By doing the ‘impossible’ – everybody tells me that you can’t change human nature – then one is automatically harmless ... which does not mean abstaining from killing. It means that no act is malicious, spiteful, hateful, revengeful and so on. It is a most estimable condition to be in. One is then free to kill or not kill something or someone, as the circumstances require. Eating meat, for example, is an act of freedom, based upon purely practical considerations such as the taste bud’s predilection, or the body’s ability to digest the food eaten, or meeting the standards of hygiene necessary for the preservation of decaying flesh, or the availability of sufficient resources on this planet to provide the acreage necessary to support the conversion of vegetation into animal protein. It has nothing whatsoever with sparing sentient beings any distress.

Thus ‘Right and Wrong’ is nothing but a socially-conditioned affective and cognitive conscience instilled by well-meaning adults through reward and punishment (love and hate) in a fatally-flawed attempt to control the wayward self that all sentient beings are born with. The feeling of ‘Right and Wrong’ is born out of holding on to a belief system that is impossible to live ... as all belief systems are. I am not trying to persuade anyone to eat meat or not eat meat ... I leave it entirely up to the individual as to what they do regarding what they eat. It is the belief about being ‘Right or Wrong’ that is insidious, for this is how you are manipulated by those who seek to control you ... they are effectively beating you with a psychological stick. And the particularly crafty way they go about it is that they get you to do the beating to yourself. Such self-abasement is the hall-mark of any religious humility ... a brow-beaten soul earns its way into some god’s good graces by self-castigating acts of redemption. Holding fervently to any belief is a sure sign that there is a wayward ‘I’ that needs to be controlled.

Give me ‘silly’ and ‘sensible’ any day.

*

RESPONDENT: Which act is sillier, to risk limb by driving against the tradition or putting that child on a bike around the next blind corner at risk by driving at all?

RICHARD: Being alive is a risk ... that is what makes it thrilling. As for cycling ... knowing that there are some drivers who hate cyclists, and consider that they should not even be on ‘their’ road, I look out on blind corners. I passed this kind of information onto my children – and anyone else who wants to listen – so I would recommend that this child that you refer to be advised likewise. Somewhere along the line, each person takes amenability for their own life and actions.

Do you see how you have taken a straight-forward matter-of-fact way of appraising a situation and attempted to turn it into morality? It is not a matter of merely substituting ‘silly’ and ‘sensible’ for ‘Right’ and ‘Wrong’ ... it requires a paradigm shift born out of the sincere endeavour to enable the already always perfect moment apparent via elimination of identity in its totality. As you are busy trying to foolishly prove that it does not work by fudging the issue – rather than seeing how it does work in delivering the goods – then you obviously have no interest in playing a part in bringing about peace-on-earth.

But what solipsist would, eh?

*

RICHARD: It is not a matter of merely substituting ‘silly’ and ‘sensible’ for ‘Right’ and ‘Wrong’ ... it requires a paradigm shift born out of the sincere endeavour to enable the already always perfect moment apparent via elimination of identity in its totality.

RESPONDENT: If I may, if it is an ‘already always perfect moment’, what sense is there to be made out of endeavouring to make it so?

RICHARD: Try reading with both eyes before dashing to the keyboard and tapping out your latest bit of ignorance. I never said ‘make it so’. Have a look.

RESPONDENT: I am in agreement with the claim ‘already always perfect moment’, more, I would see the endeavour to make it so an ‘already always perfect moment’, but this does not seem to be your intent here.

RICHARD: This is but further verbiage based upon a false premise born out of not bothering to read what I write. In fact your entire post smells of cheap point-scoring and reflects your character well.


KONRAD: To give an example that makes the difference between consciousness and awareness clear, if you are sleeping and dreaming, you are aware of your dream. But in the dream-state there is no principle reacting to this awareness.

RICHARD: Are you sure that you are not confusing the word ‘principle’ with ‘principal’ ... because principles still operate in the sleeping dream-state. For normal people in the sleeping dream-state, the awake dream-state ‘I’ (the principal) who interprets the extrinsic world – the sensible environment – and guides the body to undertake the chosen course of action according to the demands of the intrinsic world – one’s desires, urges, impulses, beliefs, truths, values, morals, ethics, principles and etcetera – has been replaced by a sleeping dream-state ‘I’ who is largely incompetent due to the pseudo-extrinsic world – the dream-environment – being but pseudo-sensible events drawn by random association from the brain’s affectively-corrupted memory banks. Without a sensible base to operate from, dreams are nonsensical ... but the sleeping dream-state ‘I’ still tries to apply the principles inherited from the awake dream-state ‘I’.


RESPONDENT: The tiger eats a man. It just is. The tiger is not bad.

RICHARD: This is a classic ‘straw man’ argument ... nowhere have I ever said that a ‘tiger is bad’ (just as nowhere have I ever said the human animal is ‘bad’). I long ago abandoned ‘good’ and ‘bad’ because far too many of my fellow human beings have been killed because of what is ‘good’... or savagely punished because they were ‘bad’. Look, when a human kills another human it is doing what comes natural (what you call ‘it just is’) and, like the tiger, is not ‘bad’ for doing so. However, unlike tigers, the human animal can think, reflect and plan for an orderly society wherein one can live safely with one’s fellow human beings ... hence the entirely sensible agreements called ‘laws’. Under these agreements, if you continue to do what comes natural like the tiger does, you will languish behind bars for 25 years to life. If you use your human intelligence (instead of your animal passions like the tiger does) you will find that doing what comes natural is silly.

It is far better – and much more understandable – to appraise one’s actions being either ‘silly’ or ‘sensible’. It is simply silly to drive on the wrong side of the road, for example, because of the obvious danger to one’s own life and limb and others ... not ‘bad’ with all its judgmental condemnations of one’s implicit wickedness and wrongness. It is sensible to find out why one is driven to perform socially unacceptable acts, for instance, rather than to refrain from committing these deeds because such restraint is the ‘good’ thing to do. Because ‘good’ and ‘bad’ are emotive words loaded with reward and punishment connotations ... which is poor motivation for salubrious action anyway.

Then one has dignity for the first time in one’s life.

RESPONDENT: You are in a deep hole of your own mind’s making.

RICHARD: Not so ... it is you who are ‘in a deep hole of your own mind’s making’ and not me. I faced up to ‘my’ animal nature and discovered that it was a software package and not hardware. ‘I’ pressed the ‘delete’ button and – as there is no ‘recycle bin’ – ‘I’ became extinct. Both ‘Heaven’ and ‘Hell’ disappeared along with ‘Good’ and ‘Bad’ ... the ‘Good’ exists only to combat the ‘Bad’.

There is a third alternative.


RICHARD: Neither man nor woman has got it right. Male logic is as useless as female intuition. Reflection needs to be neither logical nor intuitive in order to be reflective.

RESPONDENT: But does it need to be affective in someway? Is there pure rationality outside of some mechanical calculus?

RICHARD: Neither affective nor rational ... if by ‘pure rationality’ you mean logic. I take ‘rational’ to mean ‘matter-of-fact’ or ‘common-sense’. Neither logic nor intuition fit this category. (Just because something is logical, it does not make it sensible. The same applies to intuition).

*

RESPONDENT: But the state [of vivid experiencing] deteriorates, the mind grows weary, and the vividness is lost. This has something to do with the way in which the mind distances itself from the experiencing. This involves thinking about the experience, but it also involves the way in which memory and accumulating experiences dulls.

RICHARD: Yes, the temporary experience does ‘deteriorate’ ... but this state shows the genuine aspirant what is possible. One then makes the living of this condition, twenty four hours a day, one’s number one priority in life. It is called being here at this moment in eternal time and at this place now in infinite space ... one is then this physical universe experiencing itself as a sensate and reflective human being. For this to happen, not only ‘I’ as ego must dissolve, but ‘me’ as soul must disappear as well. Then, when there is no identity ‘being’ whatsoever, the clean and clear and pure perfection of the infinitude of this self-same universe becomes apparent. Peace-on-earth was here all the time.

Is the deterioration because ‘the mind distances itself’? Is it because of ‘memory accumulating experiences’? When I recall what happened back in 1981 when activating the PCE on a daily basis in order to make the condition permanent, thought and memory operated easily and without causing the state to deteriorate. It was feelings that precipitated re-entry into everyday reality ... the reassertion of ‘me’ being. The mind’s activities – like thought remembering and planning – cops a lot of blame, whilst feelings get off scot-free. Emotions and passions – especially passion itself – are the real spanners in the works. The only way I would point the finger at the mind’s actions would be in believing and imagining ... which are emotional and passionate actions of thought, anyway. Logical and intuitional thought – being both irrational – fall into this calenture-based category.

Whereas rational thought – sensible thought – is a pleasure ... a delight and a joy to behold.

*

RICHARD: ‘This moment does not exist in the ‘real world’, it exists in the actual world. Only the present can exist in reality. Reality is not actuality. Reality is the world that is perceived through the senses by ‘me’, the psychological entity that resides inside the body. Actuality is the world that is apperceived at the senses by me as this body-consciousness’.

RESPONDENT: Can you explain this difference between ‘apperceived at the senses by me’ and ‘perceived through the senses by ‘me’’?

RICHARD: The ‘I’ in the head and ‘me’ in the heart are aliens having a parasitical existence in the psyche itself ... it is as if everybody has a couple of ‘walk-ins’ living inside of them. They, as ‘I’ or ‘me’, look out through the eyes as if looking out of a window onto the outside world. In a PCE they temporarily abdicate the throne and everyday perception becomes apperception ... which is the eyes seeing, the ears hearing and so on. Then one is this flesh and blood body only being aware of its own accord. I use the first person pronoun in reference to what I am – not who I am – and what I am is this body only. But I am not an identity ... just as one can shift one’s identity from the mind to the heart to imitate enlightenment, so too can one shift one’s identity from the mind to the heart and then to the body in order to imitate an actual freedom. This virtual freedom thus engendered I call actualism.

But one must go dangerously through the heart first ... it is a risk well worth taking.

*

RICHARD: ‘When ‘I’ cease to exist as a psychic entity, so too does the diabolical disappear. To put it bluntly: ‘I’ am a mixture of Good and Evil ... both are psychic forces which have waged their insidious battle in the human psyche for aeons. ‘I’ try heroically, but vainly, to attain to ‘The Good’, hoping thereby to conquer ‘The Bad’, for so have humans been taught, been mesmerised, with precept and example, by the Saints and the Sages throughout the ages. All this is a futile drama played out in the realm of reality. In actuality, neither Good nor Evil have any substance whatsoever. With utter purity prevailing everywhere, virtue has become an outmoded concept. It is vital only in reality, in order to curtail the savage instincts that generate the alien entity’.

RESPONDENT: Yes, the moral obligation does bring with it suppression and inner conflict.

RICHARD: There is no need for morality where there is no sorrow and malice. One still complies with the legal laws and observes the social protocols ... this being exceedingly sensible given that people are as they are.

*

RICHARD: ‘Life was meant to be easy’.

RESPONDENT: Is that a form of escapism? A should be when we are confronted by this world wide crises? Is this a relationship of disassociating from the problems and disorder of this world?

RICHARD: I am not suffering from disassociation ... I watch the news of the world and speak with people on a daily basis and I see all the unnecessary suffering going on because its reality is taken to be actual. Life in the actual world is what is genuine and authentic ... to escape from a grim and glum illusion and not become seduced into the loving and compassionate delusion of mysticism is an eminently sensible thing to do. You may call it ‘escapism’ and be probably correct ... but it sure beats the masochism and sadism of everyday reality. The only good thing about suffering is when it ends. Yet it can end for anybody ... and when it ends for everybody, there is global peace. This ‘escapism’ sounds pretty good to me!

I may be a lot of things ... but I am not silly.

RESPONDENT: Does responsibility and seriousness come with being carefree?

RICHARD: No, the utter reliability of being always happy and harmless replaces the onerous burden of being responsible ... and actuality’s blithe sincerity dispenses with the gloomy seriousness that epitomises adulthood.

It is funny – in a peculiar way – for I often gain the impression when I speak to others, that I am spoiling their game-plan. It seems as if they wish to search forever ... they consider arriving to be boring. How can unconditional peace and happiness, twenty-four-hours-a-day, possibly be boring? Is a carefree life all that difficult to comprehend? Why persist in a sick game ... and defend one’s right to do so? Why insist on suffering when blitheness is freely available here and now? Is a life of perennial gaiety something to be scorned? I have even had people say, accusingly, that I could not possibly be happy when there is so much suffering going on in the world. The logic of this defies credibility: Am I to wait until everybody else is happy before I am? If I was to wait, I would be waiting forever ... for under this twisted rationale, no one would dare to be the first to be happy. Their peculiar reasoning allows only for a mass happiness to occur globally; overnight success, as it were. Someone has to be intrepid enough to be first, to show what is possible to a benighted humanity.

One has to face the opprobrium of one’s ill-informed peers.


RESPONDENT: I should like to tell you, that the moment you are speaking about consciousness, PCE, etc., and that you perceive the infinity of the universe through apperceptive awareness, then you have already entered the field of metaphysics.

RICHARD: No, the unmediated experience of infinitude – the apperceptive awareness of boundless space, unlimited time, and perpetual matter (mass/energy) – is not a metaphysical experience ... the metaphysical experience, during the eleven years of spiritual enlightenment and called by some as being ‘choiceless awareness’, was of a timeless and spaceless and formless ‘infinitude’ known as god or truth or ground of being or implicate order and so on.

When I am speaking about consciousness I am referring to the condition of a flesh and blood body being conscious (the suffix ‘-ness’ forms a noun meaning a state or condition) as in being alive, not dead, awake, not asleep, and sensible, not insensible (comatose), and when I am talking about pure consciousness I am referring to the condition of a flesh and blood body being conscious sans identity in toto – both ego-self (the thinker) and the feeling-self (the feeler) – which means that perception is bare perception (unmediated perception) ... the term ‘apperceptive awareness’ is but another way of referring to this simple perception (aka naïve perception) and being thus direct it is non-separative (not separated from the physical).

Thus there is nothing metaphysical about being apperceptive ... indeed, if anything the normal way of perception – a mediated, or indirect and thus separative, perception – being once-removed from the physical, is arguably already well on the way to being beyond time and space and form.

RESPONDENT: I define metaphysics as ‘meta ta physsika’, a Greek word meaning beyond nature and physics.

RICHARD: As the word ‘physics’ – plural of ‘physic’ from the Latin ‘physica’ from the Greek ‘ta phusika’ (‘the natural’ understood as ‘things’) – is derived from the Greek ‘phusis’ (‘nature’) it properly refers to the science of the natural world (as in knowledge of the physical world of animal, vegetable and mineral) ... thus to say nature *and* physics is to separate it from the physical.

And I am not just nit-picking over the meaning of words here as it is glaringly obvious that the late nineteenth-century/early twentieth-century physics departed from being a study of the natural world (the physical world) and entered into the realm of the mathematical world ... an abstract world which does not exist in nature.

Indeed the word ‘metaphysical’ also refers to that which is ‘based on abstract general reasoning or a priori principles’ (Oxford Dictionary) as well as the more common meaning of that which transcends matter or the physical (as in immaterial, incorporeal, supersensible, supernatural and so on).

And quantum theory, for an instance of this, is most definitely based on a mathematical device (Mr. Max Planck’s ‘quanta’) initially designed to solve the hypothetical problem of infinite ultra-violet radiation from a non-existent perfect ‘black-box’ radiator and never intended to be taken as being real (until Mr. Albert Einstein took it up for his own purposes).

RESPONDENT: You have entered in a field beyond science.

RICHARD: As science is the state or fact of knowing – knowledge or cognisance of something physical – based upon observed facts, and/or with demonstrated truths, in that it is both an intellectual and practical activity encompassing those branches of study which apply objective observation (the scientific method) to the phenomena of the physical universe (the natural sciences), in what way is determining that the universe has boundless space, unlimited time, and perpetual matter (mass/energy), by both intellectual reasoning and direct observation entering into a field beyond science?

As you cannot be saying that all those people with the scientific training sufficient to qualify for the title ‘scientist’, who also say the universe is infinite, eternal, and perpetual, are not operating in the field of science (and only those people with the scientific training sufficient to qualify for the title ‘scientist’ who say that the universe is finite, temporary, and depletable are operating in the field of science) it would appear that, according to your rationale, only non-apperceptive observation (a mediated, or indirect and thus separative, perception) is within the field of science and apperceptive observation (an unmediated, or direct and thus non-separative, perception) is not.

In other words, for it to be scientific, observation must be done by an entity within the flesh and blood body, eh?

RESPONDENT: You are perceiving something with other means than body senses.

RICHARD: First of all, as I am ‘body senses’ I am unable to perceive ‘with’ them – I perceive *as* them – and as there is no identity in situ inside this flesh and blood body I would be most interested to hear your theory as to what ‘other means’ you say I perceive with.

Meaning that as there is no affective faculty whatsoever operating in this flesh and blood body – thus no epiphenomenal imaginative/psychic facility – there are no other means than sensorially (and reasoning therehence).

And sensible reasoning at that.

*

RESPONDENT: We create our world as much as it is created by our senses, there is a point where this two worlds interconnect, the reticular activating system, maybe?

RICHARD: No, the identity within creates an inner reality which it pastes as a veneer over this actual world and calls it an outer reality – which gives the feeling that its outer world is created by the senses – thus there is no point where reality and actuality interconnect.

This actual world – which the identity is totally oblivious to and forever locked-out of – is not created by the senses ... it exists in its own right.

RESPONDENT: Having no identity and no inner world to be created by it, seems that the flux from your brain has ceased, remaining only the flux coming from the senses.

RICHARD: As there is no inner world being created by an identity there is nowhere for any ‘flux’ coming from the senses to go to – indeed there is no ‘coming from the senses’ – and it is not helpful to try to comprehend by using a there and here (be it either coming or going) model as there is only here.

I am the senses – I am these eyes seeing, I am these ears hearing, I am this nose smelling, I am this tongue tasting, I am this skin touching – thus there is no separation from what is happening (hence no coming or going).


RESPONDENT: You say that Ugliness as well as Beauty disappeared out of your life. But if you were to travel to India and live for a few days on a ‘suburban’ huts-made street in Bombay, would that not be an ugly experience for your senses?

RICHARD: As both ugliness and beautifulness are affective experiences, and not sensate experiences, it is not possible for sense organs to experience anything as being either ugly or beautiful.

RESPONDENT: Ugliness was not the best chosen word for what I intended to convey. These sense organs can experience something as being ‘hideous’ or is it only a memory from your past travels to India and not an actuality?

RICHARD: You are presumably referring to this:

• [Richard]: ‘I have been to India to see for myself the results of what they claim are tens of thousands of years of devotional spiritual living ... and *it is hideous*. If it were not for the appalling suffering engendered it would all be highly amusing ... but it is practically and demonstrably deleterious to both individual and communal well-being. That is why one only needs to look at where this devotional spiritual living has been practiced for thousands of years to see how badly it has failed to live up to its implied promise of peace and harmony and prosperity for all. Thus both the spiritual and the secular methods of producing peace on earth have each failed miserably ... it is high time for a third alternative to hove into view; something new that has never been lived before in human history. Why repeat the mistakes of the past when the results of doing so are plain to view in all cultures? [emphasis added].

It would have been better to have written it as ‘it was hideous’ as that is more how it was experienced at the time ... perhaps it would be more helpful to say it is grotesque (as in its ‘ludicrous from incongruity; fantastically absurd, bizarre’ meaning).

RESPONDENT: For as far as I can ascertain there are pleasant and unpleasant sensations for one’s body (as in a bad smell, chill, very loud sounds, air & water pollution, filthy environment).

RICHARD: There is physical pleasure and pain (bodily pain is essential else one could be sitting on a hot-plate, for example, and not know that one’s bum was on fire until one saw the smoke rising) ... it is the affective pleasure and pain which has no existence here in this actual world.

RESPONDENT: How would you experience now the lifestyle of India?

RICHARD: The lifestyle of the Indian culture is more or less the same as the lifestyle of any culture ... only, perhaps, more obviously weird.

RESPONDENT: Okay, it’s not ugly or beautiful, but then how is it in actuality?

RICHARD: As you initially asked about the sensate experience of a ‘huts-made street in Bombay’ then essentially every thing on the Indian subcontinent is pristine – pure and perfect – as it is anywhere. Vis.:

• [Co-Respondent]: ‘... do you have the discriminative ability still intact, the ability to see something as being of greater value then some other similar object/person (a value scale of some sort)?
• [Richard]: ‘Perhaps if I were to put it this way: if, upon ordering buttered toast at a café the waiter/waitress brings hot, golden-brown toast covered with butter just beginning to melt and drip, in contrast to bringing cold, charred-black toast covered with butter long-ago melted and now congealed, I would rate the former as being 10, on a scale of 1-10 and the latter as being 1 on the same scale ... howsoever that is a relative scale as the very stuff of both the former and the latter, being the very stuff of infinitude itself, is incomparable (peerless).
Thus, in the ultimate sense, everything is perfect here in this actual world.

RESPONDENT: I’ve never been to India and I don’t intend to but I’ve heard reports from those who went ... and they were shocked by the appalling poverty, misery, pollution and hardships endured by the majority of people there. And these reports came from people who are citizens of a ‘second world’ or developing country and are used to much lower standards of living compared to the West.

RICHARD: Obviously I cannot speak for everyone – and ‘poverty, misery, pollution and hardships’ are not peculiar to India – yet I would not be going too far out on a limb to hazard a guess that at least some of the shock of the Indian culture reported by many peoples visiting there lies in the propaganda about it being a great spiritual culture ... for it is indeed shocking to view first-hand the results of what they claim are ‘tens of thousands of years’ of devotional spiritual living.

*

RESPONDENT: There are both pleasant and unpleasant qualities for the senses which arise out of the properties of some-thing, some person or some event. Actualism is about being as happy & harmless as one can be, enjoying one’s life here on Earth as much as it is possible, appraising these actual qualities, dismissing the fictional or ‘self’ generated ones and making sensible choices in regard to these qualities. One’s life here consists of meetings with people, partaking in the available pleasures offered by one’s environment and participating in various activities and events. But what if one’s environment is as polluted, as filthy, as ‘hideous’ as one can imagine? Should one get used to it and ‘make the best of a bad situation’ or just leave?

RICHARD: The following may be of assistance:

• [Co-Respondent]: ‘I should like to see you in the middle of Manhattan working till the night and then I should like to see you philosophising about life.
• [Richard]: ‘When I read through the discussion (as delineated further above) I do not see any ‘philosophising about life’ ... what I see is an exchange of practical information, reminders, tips, hints, suggestions, clues, and so on, regarding what works and what does not.
As for ‘the middle of Manhattan working till the night’ ... I could be in solitary confinement in some insalubrious penitentiary living on bread and water and still be happy and harmless (free from malice and sorrow and their antidotal pacifiers love and compassion) as that is the target which the identity within all those years ago set as a criterion of success.
Of course I would have to be pretty silly to behave in such a manner as to occasion that life-style ... yet the validation-benchmark remains cogent to this very day.
It is all so simple here.

And:

• [Co-Respondent]: ‘Because there is no ‘I’ in you, there is nobody to worry about anything or correct, improve anything?
• [Richard]: ‘There is no worry, no, but I am not too sure that this is because there is no ‘I’ ... it is simply silly to worry as worrying does nothing whatsoever to get an event changed. I correct – and thus improve – what can be corrected ... according to a preference for creature comforts and ease of life-style. For example: if I can sit upon a cushion instead of the brick pavers of the patio I will ... that is a preference. But if a cushion is not available it does not matter ... I thoroughly enjoy being alive at this moment in eternal time and this place in infinite space irregardless of what is happening. I could be just as happy and harmless on bread and water in solitary confinement in some insalubrious penitentiary ... but I would be pretty silly to act or behave in such a way as to occasion that outcome!
The ‘I’ that used to inhabit this body did everything possible that ‘I’ could do to blatantly imitate the actual in that ‘I’ endeavoured to be happy and harmless for as much as is humanly possible. This was achieved by putting everything on a ‘it doesn’t really matter’ basis. That is, ‘I’ would prefer people, things and events to be a particular way, but if it did not turn out like that ... it did not really matter for it was only a preference. ‘I’ chose to no longer give other people – or the weather – the power to make ‘me’ angry ... or irritated ... or even peeved, if that was possible. It was great fun and very, very rewarding along the way. ‘My’ life became cleaner and clearer and more and more pure as each habitual way of living life was consciously eliminated through constant exposure.
Finally ‘I’ invited the actual by letting go of the controls and letting this moment live ‘me’. ‘I’ became the experience of the doing of this business of being alive ... no longer the ‘do-er’. Thus ‘my’ days were numbered ... ‘I’ could hardly maintain ‘myself’ ... soon ‘my’ time would come to an end. An inevitability set in and a thrilling momentum took over ... ‘my’ demise became imminent.
The moment of the death of ‘me’ was so real that it was experienced as being that one was going into the grave physically ... that is how real ‘I’ am.
• [Co-Respondent]: ‘So, the world is perfect.
• [Richard]: ‘The clean and clear and pure perfection of peace-on-earth never goes away despite all the wars and rapes and murders and tortures and domestic violence and child abuse and suicide. There is the preference for the creature-comforts and ease of life-style, of course, but one takes the world of people, things and events as it is. Even if every single human being was happy and harmless, there would still be cyclones and earthquakes and tidal waves and fires and crocodiles and sharks and mosquitoes and so forth.
Life is an adventure, after all.
The physical world cannot ever be perfect, in the sense that nothing uncomfortable would happen, due to the finite nature of all spatial/temporal things – animal, vegetable and mineral – and events happen which some people welcome but others not (a farmer may want rain to germinate the crop whilst a builder may want clear skies to get the roof on). I cannot consider for a moment that people would want a nearby volcano to explode and engulf their village or town or city ... yet it happens. And there are the trivial matters of daily life – I spilt hot coffee only a couple of days ago – yet in the final analysis none of these events matter. Ultimately nothing is of utter importance because we are all going to die, some day.
Things are only as important as one makes them be.

And:

• [Richard]: ‘As a child, a youth and a young man ‘day-dreaming’ was a common occurrence ... it was a way of having time pass, for example, whilst working for wages in any job that required only mindless repetitive movements to achieve the desired result. Then one day I caught myself looking at the clock and thinking ‘damn, only 2.00 PM; three more hours to go’ and it dawned on me, with upsetting intelligibility, that I was wishing large parts of my life away. Many years were to pass spent in finding better jobs, better locations to live in, better lifestyles and so on before I finally faced the fact that, while changing the physical situation is not to be sneezed at, it was how I experienced this moment that was vital ... only this moment is actual.
The question I asked was this: could I be in solitary confinement, in some hypothetical penitentiary, and be so delighted with being just here right now that ‘day-dreaming’ never need occur?

RESPONDENT: I ask this as the central point of spirituality is ‘acceptance’ and separation. To be more precise, acceptance in the sense of dissociation: whatever happens ‘I’ cannot be affected by and if I am affected then it is not the real ‘me’ who suffers/enjoys. So, whatever happens with the world around doesn’t matter to ‘me’, it cannot have a real impact, ‘I’ can only ‘at best’ use it as a ‘shock’ for my spiritual development but I’m not interested in improving or developing my earthly life ... and on the other hand I must not try to change the circumstances as they are given to ‘me’ by God. No wonder these are unliveable teachings.

What I want to point out is that actualism is not ‘practice-able’ for a vast majority of people, especially in third world countries, where even the basic body requirements are not met. And even if these requirements are met, the lifestyle of that particular place makes it almost impossible for someone to actually start and do something about their condition.

RICHARD: Hmm ... actualism is ‘practice-able’ by anyone, anywhere, anytime, no matter the situation and circumstances (as expressed in the ‘living happily and harmlessly in the world as-it-is with people as-they-are’ phrase you quoted in your previous e-mail).


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