Enjoy a New Book, a New Hat, a New Record, a New Car
|copyright 1989 Jan Cox|
|Reminder: The following is a rough transcript of one of Jan's extemporaneous talks, and people do not speak, ad lib, in the same way they write. Thus some sentence fragments, and other linguistic anaomolies can pop up which may have slipped past the transcriber. But the overall tone and intent of his comments still comes through for those wanting to hear something new.|
someone else involved with doing your agenda, as I have previously described
it, is in no way a form of arguing. By arguing, I mean a form of resistance,
the kind of resistance that is necessary for anything to be alive and to
stay alive. You simply cannot get somebody to do your agenda on the
basis of arguing. If the inherent resistance of arguing is there,
what you are going to have is interference, ranging all the way from severe
interference to absolute defeat of them participating in your agenda.
Think about medieval warfare. Arguing is like using the crude, classic, basic sword -- those great two-handed swords like you see in the movies. They were extremely clumsy, to say the least. Arguing amounts to the crudest kind of interplay, with those kinds of swords that you hold in two hands, and it's "Whang! Whang!" back and forth with some other person. That is the nature of all argument, that is the nature of ordinary resistance as it is manifested in the life of man, between peoples.
If you were engaged with some person, attempting to get them to do your agenda, and if you were able to question them about their view of what was at that moment going on, their feeling would be that they were having an argument with you. Even if you were correctly doing what I have been describing and were not, on your part, arguing, the other person would still feel like the two of you were having an argument. It would still come down to a kind of clash between you and that other person; but it cannot be that way to you. You cannot perceive what's going on as that kind of armed conflict that gets down to a crude level of clumsy, two handed swords with the two of you taking turns flailing away at each other. To extend our Hollywood type scenario, you would have to have in your hand a razor sharp rapier and, by using the kind of questioning method I have previously described, you would turn this exchange that seems like an argument to the other person into a very subtle kind of duel. You must become a rapier handler to the point that your attack -- which it is in a sense -- is very light, and so skillful that you can tickle the other person so they believe they are in some sort of combat. But you are not engaged in the conflict, in the dance, and your weapon is not crude, clumsy and simplistic.
You should re-ponder the impact of that story of Socrates. Forget whether it was history or not, if it was a good myth it's better than history because it is the human nervous system talking in ways that humans have yet to actually execute, and if they did it was so excruciating and so fleet they didn't even see it so they make up stories. Consider the Athenian's hostility to Socrates. Did he actually argue with people? This may not be strictly literal, but here is a version closer to the reality of the story. Socrates did not argue with these people, he questioned them. He made them do his agenda, in a certain way. (Though not in the way I would have told him to if this was actual history, and if he was not trying to commit suicide.)
Try to see where I am pointing. The hostility was not caused by argument. Socrates did not go around asking people insulting questions about whatever they happened to be doing. He did not engage in combat on the basis of using a crude sword; that is not what caused the hostility, and I may add, serious hostility at that. Think about it. What caused that kind of rage, was that he was forcing them into his agenda. He was not giving them a good French apache dance, if you know what that is, of him and the other person pushing back and forth on each other. As long as there is that kind of ordinary resistance you will not have the kind of hostility that will cause a whole city, a whole epoch of history to turn on one guy and say, "Hey, enough is enough." Mere arguing will not produce that. Something much more subtle is at work.
When you are dealing just with argument, not only are people not upset to the point of overt hostility, but the resistance of pushing back and forth is demanded by Life. It is necessary for the transmission of certain kinds of energy; it gets down to the heart of, the fundamental necessity of the fact that anything in life, no matter how benign or innocuous it may seem to you, must meet resistance. If there is not resistance, it is going to be still-born and have no lasting impact.
When I say that you should be getting people to do your agenda, or if you prefer, that you should refuse to do anyone else's agenda, this is not limited to any specific example such as returning something to the store where you bought it or getting somebody to agree with you or do something you want them to do. What I mean is that you should step aside in a very special way. It is not really three dimensionally describable and at least physically you cannot step aside -- but you step aside from your intentions, from your interests, from your thought processes, from your actual intelligence. You step aside from the place where everything has resistance. That is what your agenda should be.
It is not simply to make somebody do something you want. It is to
keep from being surprised. It is to keep from being frightened.
Everybody gets frightened at times, and if you were frightened you were
surprised. Everybody gets sad or depressed at times, although you
should not admit it, which means you were frightened, which means you
were surprised. Once you have accepted somebody else's agenda, everything
that is human is then possible. Everything that everybody, including
you at the old level, thinks and feels is now possible one more time.
As long as you argue with yourself, there is no danger of any part of
your dialogue buying the farm. There is no danger of anything radical
occurring. If you did not argue with yourself, did not resist and
fight with what seems to be yourself, you would not have any desire to
change anything. Because whenever you desired to change, you would
have done so. You would now be, as the religious philosophers like
to say, perfect.
See if you can follow something really tricky. Selling somebody something is a form of getting them to deal with your agenda. First, selling something to somebody requires that they resist it. There are two specific levels of people resisting. It is not simply that the salesman has to overcome resistance to buying his products (which, by the way, are not limited to vacuum cleaners). Listen fast now. They resist it already, or you would not attempt to sell them something.
Consider a level of the human nervous system that is just below the level of civilized, intellectual man:
Now recall that I have previously pointed out to you that everything can be seen as having a primary purpose and then as having a sub-purpose, that people could use it as a hobby. At that lower level of primary purposes, where people are just barely literate, almost noncivilized, what do people have to be sold on?
Such people cannot exist, but I am going to describe them anyway and you will be able to hear it, which ought to strike you as extremely interesting, if not outright odd. I am making up an archetypical example here, but people at that primary level would still be scrounging each day just to feed themselves. They would not have to be sold on something to eat. If you were to open a cave man restaurant, you would not have to advertise to get people to come and eat. There would be no resistance to eating. Imagine now that you have moved above that line, to the level where secondary purposes can exist, the hobby level. Food can then become a hobby, which in fact is very common now. Lots of people have the hobby of being amateur gourmets. Now a restaurant must go to considerable expense just to get you to eat there; not just to eat, which you must do to live, but to eat at that particular place. You have resistance. The agenda to be sold on the secondary level meets a different kind of resistance.
My purpose here is not to talk about restaurants or about arguing, but to talk about the way energy moves in Life, and ways in which it is misconstrued, and ways in which it seems to be inexplicable, though it is very "splicable," to those that can see the "splicable." Think about what hobbies are. Think about what takes up a civilized person's time, what they think about. You do not think about eating to stay alive, or wearing clothes just to protect you from the elements, or having sex to make babies. You may think about these things but not on the primary, elemental level.
Think about your own dialogue on the primary level, the level where there is no resistance to doing that which is necessary. Now move up to where the main purpose, of those doing something, is not what would seem to be the primary purpose. The internal resistance that seems to occur in your own dialogue is now of a different form. Look at it this way: for a Real Revolutionist the resistance is unwarranted, and it interferes with your enjoyment of things. There are all kinds of things that you seem to have and interest in, and even try to pursue as a hobby, but then you suffer over them in some way. You argue with yourself about it. If you followed any of this, try to see that what Life needs done, gets done without resistance, and so you have people walking around moaning things like, "Oh, why did I do that? I have got to change!"
Somebody involved with This should be seeking out new, at least intellectual food, new experiences. You should enjoy finding a new book, a new hat, a new record, a new car -- anything new. That is not being surprised in the way I am using the word. I mean that you should not be surprised at that which should be known and expected. It is not that in some way you should become even more blase than you already are. In the City, of course, everybody is always surprised by that which should be known and expected. In the City everybody has to have a hobby and to have a hobby, to use things at a secondary level, you must have a certain kind of resistance and this kind of resistance ends up with you doing other peoples agenda, and doing other peoples agenda requires that you continually apparently be surprised.
Down at the primary level things are also known and expected, but people continually say otherwise. Part of Life's agenda for humanity is to have everybody on the defensive. That is not true, but at the 3-D level that is the only way to talk about it. Life's agenda is quite simple, it is the dominant force. At the primary level everybody knows "We are not in charge," but at the secondary level you can apparently be in charge. When you get down to the level of people standing in the que, they can apparently push each other around, but when you look at everybody as being one organism, everybody knows that they are dancing backwards, they are doing somebody else's agenda. They just hope it is somebody benevolent. Which of course gives rise to the idea of a god.
At the level of ordinary intelligence everything is known and expected because you have already thought it. How can you be surprised at anything you have thought, oh, at least twice... At that level you cannot think anything new, unless you consider flying pigs to be a new thought.