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Summary by TK
#244 * Jan 22, 1987 * - 1:43
More on power brokers as sponsors/censors of the 'arts'--internally; in Partnership terms. The controlling partner has a real suspicion of your 'arts', your creative urges, the arising of original, disquieting thoughts and emotions. People are not wired to find anything new; rather, to find something to agree with. They can say they search for the new, but always act otherwise. Related to the power of external proverbs and wisdom; the absolute dependence of everybody on external knowledge--the quotes of others for your own knowledge. Relation to audience/entertainer heat transfer; the expected, agreed with; the seeming new, the newly described.]
[Revelation/wrap-up for 1986; important trick: The Few should be willing to be absolutely bound to act on the basis of their erstwhile de facto realization of the Reality of This Thing. Should be bound to act in accordance with This Thing Understanding even when the Partnership can't remember it; should be able to at least remember that you once saw truth/fact of This Thing, and act as if still in possession of such Understanding. For instance, it is a fact that (if you can see it) : when people don't act right they don't feel right. Especially when 'psychological', non-visible dis-ease is the active factor. To see evidence of literal, physical injury or illness releases the victim from accountability; but moodiness is held accountable. But The Few must be able to remember/act that 'psychological' factors are biochemical, physical--and no one is accountable. The Few must be able to know they once knew; unicorn analogy. ]
[Closed systems and hoped-for black hole exits. Example of Zen sports: mastery of self vs. mastery of sport emphasis. But what/who seeks the mastery over 'self' in such study? One part of self seeks to master another part. But both have same antecedent, context. There are no black holes for the entry of devilish, contrary forces in the universe. ]
[People unknowingly, in an affordable way want to: "go off" "and not come back". They want to be able to go off, at no personal expense of effort, and not have to come back. Alcohol example. Without the go-off desire everything would stop. Sure, you can go off, but always have to come back. ]
[More on "feel right —-act right". Note how agreeable 'overkill' is to people when not making anya ttempt to restore balance to their moody funk; "oh well, I'll just kill myself--where's the gun" sarcasm.]
[Admonition to tape watchers that J. is not merely prescribing behavior in This Thing; rather he suggests contexts most conducive to doing of This Thing. Given rule: Be polite (minimally civil) to others; humorously rude to self. These are words to live by. ]
[Mortality. No pessimism intended but you're going to die--perhaps in pathetic or ignominious circumstances. And it can happen at any time. You cannot escape Life in its most primitive possibilities. The inescapability of the 'other world' of negative events which must effect your ultimate demise. The only possibility of real Freedom --of 'going off' and not having to come back --lies in forcing the growth of your own Understanding. ]
[1:40 TASK: find example of one of the most misleading ideas that Life has placed in man.
IF YOU DON'T ACT RIGHT, YOU DON'T FEEL RIGHT
Document: 244, January 22, 1987
Copyright(c) Jan M. Cox, 1987
In the world of politics, whenever someone takes control by force or by electoral process, it is not long before they turn their attention to the arts. You should be able to see that what I am pointing out is absolutely based upon the reality of things. As soon as those in control feel secure in their position, they may leave the prevailing morals untouched; they may show no particular interest in the sporting activities of the people; but you can count on them immediately turning their attention to the arts. I am not talking about censorship of the press. I am talking about the arts: literature, painting, music. People in power find the arts to be a distinct threat to their power. Do you not find that very interesting?
Let's shift from the apparently external world of politics to Your own internal political world. Within the partnership, someone seems to be in control. At least there seems to be "I" and on a bad day, "me", depending on whether you are the subject or the predicate, whether you are the doer or the doee. There appears to be someone in charge; even though in a real sense, there is no one in charge. There is no Fred or Mary inside. Yet everyone accepts the fact that not only is there someone in charge, but there is also an unconscious somebody who may be even more in charge.
So all of humanity is wired up to believe that within each individual there is somebody in charge, whether you like them or not, whether you regard them as a benign ruler or a tyrant. And this one in charge has a great suspicion of the arts within you, and thus, attempts to control, sponsor and/or censor the creative urges within you. This has nothing to do with the apparent quality of your artistic endeavors. It can simply be the attempt to have an original thought, to think of something non-sequentially. If you have a thought that conflicts with the partnership and its mandate, you feel the censorship of the partnership quite strongly. Everyone's partnership has a plan about what it's doing. Anything original, anything slightly unusual arising from your organism threatens its plan and it seeks to suppress it or censor it. And at times it apparently seeks to sponsor it. And the following internal monologue might arise: "I'm not sure I can talk like this. I am not sure I can act like this. That is not me. This is not my partnership plan. That is simply not me."
Now let me elaborate on this and point out that at line level, people are not wired up to discover anything new. People are wired up to find something to agree with. This may sound too simplistic to some of you, but you should be able to hear a piece of what I am saying. You and everyone else at the ordinary level, are not created to truly try to discover anything new. Instead, you are created to find something to agree with. This is related to the curious reality behind the great power of externally fueled thoughts. Here's an example: a prisoner of war tells the press that the only thing that sustained him during captivity was repeating something a colonel once told him, "It would be better to die like a hero than to live like a dirty cowardly dog." Or someone will say, "The only thing that has carried me through life is remembering what my dear sainted grandmother always told me, 'Don't be too quick to judge until you walk a mile in the other guy's shoes.'"
Now you can listen to these examples in a certain way and wonder, "How could someone say that THAT has changed their lives?" I have just given you the basis for this behavior. Although people say that they are actively trying to discover new information, new revelations, if you look closely you will see that in actuality, people are not. It is not a shortcoming; It's just not what people are made for. Another aspect of this is Man's reliance on quotes rather than his own knowledge. People are dependent on external sources. For example, if you run across someone who is considered an expert in some field of study, the more credentials a person has, the more his speech will be littered with quotations from other "authorities on the subject". He will say, "As dear Dr. so and so said..."; "As Hobbes pointed out..."; "As Freud noted..." You are quite accustomed to listening to this kind of referencing. If you can really hear what is actually going on, you will see that it does not demonstrate how well-read a person is. This kind of dependence on external sources of information is just another example of how people are not constructed to look for anything new. They want something to agree with. You are surrounded by it in the movies, television, newspapers. It is part of what creates the situation of the "audience" and the "entertainer".
People seek entertainers. And entertainers have to seek out other entertainers. It is the transfer of ideas; it's part of the process of energy transfer within the body of Life. But if you look at everyone in the audience, you find that no one is there to discover anything new; they are there to find something to agree with. They will even take notes or try to remember what is being said so that the next time they are the "entertainer" instead of the "audience", they can produce a whole new batch of quotes that aren't even in the books yet. Now they have something new to agree with. They don't have to "dig it up" or "figure it out". It was served to them.
Now I ask you, if you really want to be Somebody, why do you have to go and find out what someone else has discovered? You should have discovered it yourself. If it is discoverable in our day and time, you should stay home and work on it yourself. But that is not the way things work. Instead, you feel that you have discovered something when you are the audience listening to an entertainer say, "Well, here's what I think..." or, "Here's what I have discovered..." So you hear it and agree with it. You feel as though you have learned something new, but all you've heard is something to agree with. If you did not agree with it, you'd be saying, "That was a real waste of time," or, "I went there expecting to learn something and the man was an idiot." What you are really saying is that, "I did not hear anything I could agree with." This is no reflection on a person's IQ. It's simply the way it is.
I suggest you try to remember this as you listen to me talk. You have agreed with me plenty. You have agreed with yourself that you are glad to have found me and This Activity. But most of what is happening is that you agree that you have never heard information quite like this. You go, "WOW!", write it down, and try to remember it. You agreed to it. I hate to tell you this, but big deal. "Agreeing" won't help.
On the other hand, if something I say strikes you beyond any possibility of human debate, as being absolute fact, then you should feel bound to ACT as though you know that all the time. The partnership, however, will not remember it all the time. So in the midst of the partnership falling apart, you can suddenly remember, "I realized that this was a fact." And then you act like you fully understand it. You simply do it.
Here is something that I have never put into words: when people don't act right, they don't feel right. That is as secret to ordinary consciousness as is the unseen world of subatomic physics. Nobody knows this. When suddenly someone doesn't act as you expect them to act, you are wired up to hold it personally against them. And you classify it, verbally or otherwise, as an assumed fact that there is something psychologically wrong with them. The closer the molecular, chemical relationship between you and someone else (lovers, family) the more likely it is that you will react to the other's behavior as if it were a personal affront, and as if he were responsible for his behavior. "Why are you acting this way in front of me? What's wrong with you? You must be feeling jealous or guilty." From a Line level view, it is a psychological problem. But that's not a fact unless you live at Line level. If you are attempting to live above the Line, then I just explained it to you: If people don't act right, they don't feel right. That's it. But to be able to understand that, you have got to be able to get beyond your own partnership's belief that there is a difference between one's physical self and one's consciousness.
If someone is physically ill, you find it easier to excuse their behavior, ordinarily. But let's say you simply come home one night and your lover doesn't act right. Or you go to see your brother, sister or mother, and you greet them and they act funny or peculiar. We are not talking about broken bones, damaged eyes or missing schnozzels. You just look at them and they look like they are just going about their business, except that something is not right about the way they are responding to you. You go off to the bathroom and think, "What is going on here?" The answer is simple: if they are acting peculiar, they feel peculiar. And yet ordinary consciousness cannot conceive of this possibility. When I first said this a few minutes ago, I did not hear gasps of great recognition. I saw no one faint. But I am telling you that if you hear that this piece of Real information is a fact, you should be bound to operate on that basis. There is no way that I can convince you that this is the way it should be. There is no way that I can win you over or logically prove my position. I don't even try. However, it should begin to strike you that it is simply a fact. There is nothing else to say. For me to say it's a fact is a gross understatement. If something strikes you in this way as an absolute fact, you will simultaneously realize that, "I've never seen that before; nobody else sees that; and Life is not arranged for people to see it." From then on you should be absolutely bound to act in accordance with that fact. It is almost impossible to describe, but here is another example of how it operates. You go into a store and ask for a pack of cigarettes. The man behind the counter looks at you as if you have just ruined his day and explodes, "What? Not another twenty! Don't you have anything smaller?" Now this person didn't physically hit you, and he doesn't appear to be bleeding himself, so his reaction to your request seems inexplicable. It just is not right for you to walk into a store, ask for something and have the person behind the counter look at you as if you were a piece of dirt. At Line level, you could take it personally. At that moment what you cannot recognize is that if people are not acting right, they're not feeling right.
Their correct chemical/hormonal balance is out of balance. It has nothing to do with you psychologically. It's got nothing to do with them psychologically because there is no psychologically. They don't feel right. Since I cannot prove this, I'll go beyond proof. When you don't act right, and you make a curt comment or a smart response to a friend or a stranger, do you do it on purpose? If someone jumped out at you just after you acted this way and said, "I thought you aspired to be a superior person. Why did you talk to that person that way?" Then you'd tell the truth and say, "You're right, I didn't mean it. I didn't even know the guy." Or you would say, "This is my best friend, my lover. How could I have said that? I'll tell you the truth. I just haven't felt right today." Now that's beyond proof.
If you don't act right there is always a very good reason. Each and every time, though you might not be able to diagnose it. When you do not act right and you do not talk right, there is a simple reason. You don't feel right. A bone might not be sticking out through the flesh. You may not be bleeding from a visible sore or injury, but there is only one reason you don't act right. To friend and stranger alike, one reason and one reason only: at that moment you don't feel right. That's it. There is nothing else to say. It is the same kind of chemical imbalance as a gunshot wound. You are bleeding. All it takes is a slight chemical imbalance. In a sense, Life is regaining its balance through this process on a very simple level. If you could just remember that one time you heard the undeniable fact that if people don't act right, they don't feel right, then you CANNOT treat them like you always do. It is almost, as close as it can be, a straight line arrow that points to a big old word, that spells: f-r-e-e-d-o-m.
Let's look at Zen Sports, Zen archery in particular. There are people who have studied this sport with a teacher for say, ten years. During this time they have been told that the object of studying zen archery is not to master the sport of archery, but to "master oneself". That sounds like strong medicine, but now I've got even stronger medicine, in the form of an inquiry. Who or what caused the would-be master in this example to seek domination over the so-called self? This is an area that Line-level consciousness cannot even think about, much less ask about. What is the source of this desire to become master of oneself?
The first thing you're faced with -- the thing that baffles Yellow Circuit consciousness -- is the possibility that there is a common source: the part of oneself that is striving to be master and the other part of oneself that must be mastered spring from the same well. What Line-level consciousness cannot deal with is that there are apparently two conflicting factors within one person. And if these two factors do indeed have a common source, then how can this source produce two things which seem to be in conflict? You are faced with the reality that the gods and the anti-gods have the same parents. You are faced with the reality that what seems to be the unruly, undisciplined part of you is the brother or the sister to the part of you that agrees when it hears: "Man should master himself."
Humanity is wired up to want to "go off", although ordinary consciousness cannot recognize it. By "go off" I mean that humanity seeks out a state of effortless bliss. That is why you are here; that is why people are in night clubs; that is why people are preparing for the CPA exam; that is why people are saving for a new car; that is why there are liquor stores; that is why there are pushers; and that is why people have the ability to hallucinate, and if you get good I think they call it "go nuts". It varies from person to person, of course. Some people like to drink, some can't drink; some people don't like to be nuts, some people can't stand to be sane. But everyone is wired up to want to "go off" in an affordable, agreeable way. This is directly tied into the fact that people are not constructed to want to discover something new. They are constructed to find something that they can agree with. And this is one step from the desire to "go off" in an affordable fashion: i.e., you always come back.
Life, in its magnanimous and thoughtful manner, has made the majority of the world's population able to tolerate alcohol. Thus, in a very small, temporary and ultimately unprofitable way, booze provides a way to "go off". A person could describe his happy hour martini like this, "Well, it relieves the tension of the office. There is a lot of stress in today's work place. After a few drinks, it just kind of eases up. I feel like I'm a little more attractive, and I don't worry about my looks or whether I'm going to get promoted." One drop of alcohol in the blood system chemically changes the balance, and provides an affordable way to "go off". But you cannot stay there indefinitely; the way you feel after two cold beers on a hot day when suddenly Life is just...alright -- won't last long. There is a very thin line. It only lasts a few minutes, and then the next beer, the next martini is too many. You always have to come back.
Although it varies from person to person, everyone is familiar with the feeling of "going off". You just finished your first, or second drink, and you sit down and just glow. You turn around to waitresses and strangers and you smile. But that feeling doesn't last very long. Everyone has to come back. There is only one exception to this, which I'm not going into.
You should find it strange and curious how easily people engage in overkill. This is related to the fact that people who don't act right, don't feel right. Given a situation in which your mate didn't act as you expected, you can see even within yourself how easy it is to become engaged in verbal overkill like, "Well, I guess I hadn't been very attentive for the past few days. So, I'll tell you what. I'm just going to pack my bags and leave and you'll never see me again." Or, "So you don't want to talk to me any more. I guess I'll leave and kill myself. Where is the gun?" You should find it curious that people so readily engage in this sort of overkill without making the simple effort to make themselves feel better. All of you do this. Women do it more overtly verbally, but men have their own version of it. They clam up, storm out of the house and go off to a bar for a few days. I remind you that I'm not simply making an interesting psychological observation here. I don't make psychological observations. I made an observation that no one else observes: this is a molecular transfer of energy in Life's body.
I am not engaged in being Miss Manners or Ann Landers for you. That is not my business. Based upon the job classification Life has given me, it is not my approach to simply direct your behavior. We do not have stated codes of conduct. Instead, we have the few little rules that I have given you for your own good, for the good of your Aim. You would have come upon these rules yourself, given enough time. I was just trying to expedite the process. You do not have to act like me; you don't have to act like each other; you don't have to act like anybody. But I have given you new ideas, and new information that you would have never heard verbally. And due to the way Life is wired up, none of you would have ever thought of these things on your own. It may seem simple when I put it into words, and that should be part of the fun. You realize that, "This information is so simple, and yet I would have never thought of it." There is one of the great lessons. You are right. You would have never ever ever ever have thought of it. And it was just a simple few words that everybody knew.
This new information, along with my suggestions, provides a kind of conducive background that makes all of this much more readily possible. What I present to you is not horizontal information, and it is not simply suggestions on ways to act which would be good for you spiritually, or socially. Actually I don't think any of you suspect that the things I mention are good for you socially. If you do, you need serious remedial help. You need to be adopted by Ann Landers, I guess. You don't need me.
I am going to give you another one of these little rules. I am suggesting to you that it is not simply related to behavior. And it is the kind of thing that you would have naturally, organically expanded into yourself if you persevered with This long enough. Alright, here it is: Minimally civil (polite) to others, humorously rude to self. I can assure you that for some terminal length of time, those are words to live by. Any of you who are still minimally civil to yourself (the partnership) have got a lot to learn. You are like the guy following the elephant around with a broom and bucket. You ask him why he doesn't get a better job and he says, "Well, I can't give up show business." You should only be civil and polite to others. If you are still polite, if you still give credence to what you apparently think and feel, then you are an idiot.
Here is my last verbal encounter for the night, the last hit and run. So listen real quick. This should not give you the blues, and it has nothing to do with pessimism. I periodically want to point this out because all of you have experienced it. Some of you rebel against it; some of you feel sad about it, some of you try to ignore it. However, there is a way in which you need a constant reminder. It is out there in Life, so I'm just going to put words on it for you again. There is a reality that you experience here at these meetings and in your own consciousness as you try to expand it yourself. This reality becomes a kind of transcendental reality. As temporary and capricious as it is for you to hold on to, it seems real enough. And it seems to be the reality in which you would continually like to be a part. You feel that if what I see is indeed my constant reality, then you would like to have a reality like that all the time. That is what This Thing is all about; that is why Life brings it about; that is why Life produces it within itself. We are a hormonal reaction inside of Life's body. We are a chemical change taking place in Life's own nervous system. And simultaneously you are still faced with a more basic reality, a kind of bottom line Red Circuit reality. For a man, a beer can thrown out of a pickup truck at your head, could serve as a reminder of this ever present reality. For a woman, the threat of rape would serve the same purpose.
What I'm pointing out to you is that some day you're going to die. You and me both. You could die from a disease or you could be standing in a bar. What I'm going to say becomes increasingly less likely, just through the magic of your involvement in This. But that doesn't mean that you couldn't end up in a bar, minding your own business, and someone hits you for no apparent reason, you fall down and hit your head, and that's the end of it. You could die in a bar that fast. You can certainly die on the highway just like that.
Everyone fears death. The organism itself fears what the Yellow Circuit tells us is demise. I want you to be aware of the fact that it touches everybody. It goes on in Life and in one sense it is Real. At the same time This Activity seems to be the Ultimate reality. Yet no one has ever escaped the Red Circuit reality. In one way or the other it is going to spell your death and mine. Whether it be a shot from a Saturday Night Special in a bar, a car wreck, or simply dying from old age, it is a reality. It is not a matter of feeling sad or complaining or suffering about it because it gets us all. It got all the heroes you've ever heard about. It will get us all. It's not a matter of choosing between This or that. It's a matter of whether you can change your Understanding, whether you can grow to the point that your natural reactions to that reality is not what they now are. THAT is freedom. It's not the freedom from death at this level; but that is The Freedom. That is what you're after. That is the ultimate "going off" at this level, and not having to come back. And you don't even have to drink.