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Transcript by DC
Jan Cox Talk 2561 : August 7, 2000
Copyright Jan Cox, Jan's Legacy 2014
These notes prepared by DC 04/06/09 from audio file.
Suggested title : Chaos and Characteristics
Here's what I wrote for this auspicious occasion.
00:13 [Reads] Some men have said that the hunger for enlightenment is, in truth, the desire to bring the chaos of the mind under control. But I say, look around; chaos is the natural state of things -- but chaos that has orderly results. Now, look at the way your mind works, then reflect on what it gets done, in spite of that.
00:46 [Reads] And one chap says, "To me, being asleep is not as bad as it once seemed -- well, back before I understood what being asleep really is."
Play soccer and entertain your feet; play the violin and entertain your fingers; play with trying to wake up and God only knows what you'll come up with.
01:13 [Reads] And one more thing concerning chaos: If you check with your hands, feet and other vital organs you'll find that they have no knowledge of the word. Just look at how your mind works and ask yourself, "Could it be any other way?"
01:35 [Reads] Definitions Onward:
Mystic: A philosopher who insists on tangible results for his efforts.
A man with most serious intentions to awaken finally abandoned the noise of everyday life and lived instead for many years in seclusion, then one day realized, "During all of the time that I spoke not a word, still I did not achieve silence."
Fish gotta swim and birds gotta sing,
And fish aren't able to tell birds that
they hear them singing.
Fish gotta swim and birds gotta sing,
And birds can't understand why fish
Brain stem gotta act, cortex gotta think about it,
And having no knowledge of the situation,
birds and fishes go on their merry way --
which was once the private mantra of one mystic, "That's all I want: I just want to go on my merry way."
02:59 [Reads] When one guy agreed to teach this other guy everything he knew about trying to wake up he first asked him, "Do you want me to tell it to you as simply as possible or do you want me to make it interesting to your mind?" And this question so startled the second guy in a way totally new to him that it came damn close to making any further comment unnecessary.
A man asked a guy who seemed to know, "After a lifetime of struggling to awaken with its many ups and downs, how can I tell now whether I am any longer making progress or not?" And the apparent hip one replied, "By this point in your life you should be no longer interested in just achieving enlightenment but rather in understanding where the desire for enlightenment comes from and what the struggle itself actually is."
03:56 [Reads] More Definitions: Mysticism: Man's most serious hobby. (Hell. Truth is, it's the only such.)
Having the mind attempt to figure itself out, called seeking enlightenment by some, is, for a few, absolutely the most fun possible you can have without losing your mind. The comment is serenely humorous in that unless you lose your instinctive attachment to your mind you'll never achieve enlightenment anyway.
04:58 [Reads] None but the unenlightened feel accomplishment at finding hypocrisy in the affairs of men, for the very realm in which the affairs of men take place is constructed of what men call hypocrisy. The unique cultural world of man is built entirely of lies, misrepresentations and misleading mental ornamentations. Forget the fable. It is not some mischievous boy constantly giving the needless cry of "Wolf!" It is unenlightened humanity itself forever warning itself about its faults, faults that are in fact an essential part of its nature. It is only a normal, deceived mind that attributes any separate substantiality to the ideas of truth, lies, faults and other qualitative characteristics of things nonphysical.
Once the mind's doppelganger is up and walking, it moves on the twin feet of hypocrisy and irony: self deception combined with feigned surprise at its results.
06:34 [Reads] And completely off of serious matters, there's this one man who says he now thinks of his mind in terms of what it actually does as being a drag queen.
Crickets love to click,
Bees love to buzz,
Frogs love to croak,
Birds love to sing
And Man loves to talk.
He, like other creatures makes sounds foremost to convey information. But beyond that his talk now is for the mere enjoyment of it.
In places where Life has caused life to appear, it seems that there it abhors silence. The sound of all mental chatter is no less than the sound of mystical 'sleep' itself.
And Buddha said, "When I was first enlightened I felt an overwhelming desire to talk about it, but after realizing what enlightenment actually is I feel overcome with the desire not to. Weird, huh?"
08:55 [Reads] To be human is, above all, to think. And to think is, above all, to think that you are special which observably has no basis in fact. So, taken as a whole do you see what this means? And if not, perhaps you're so special that it doesn't apply to you.
09:29 [Reads] Headline: Additional Definitions and Clarifications of Commonly Used Mystical Terms (This Time Forgetting Politeness).
Being asleep is the condition wherein your mind thinks about whatever it is that it naturally wants to think about.
Although not being asleep cannot be defined, it is obviously the reverse of the above.
09:59 [Reads] After certain aspects of the human mind are pointed out to the would-be mystic, he immediately begins to look at ordinary, sleeping people (as he now calls them) as unbelievably stupid in not realizing what he now so plainly sees. But if he continues to try to awaken from this sleep without ever coming to personally understand what it's actually all about, HE becomes the stupidest of the stupid, the one most lost amongst the only slightly confused.
Even the most sincere hunger for enlightenment will do you no ultimate good until you successfully investigate the conditions in you from which the hunger originates and realize what is actually going on in your seeming struggle to change them.
10:58 [Reads] Even if we expediently accept the goal of the struggle is to 'know the truth' you can never know the truth unless you finally realize the truth about what the struggle for the truth is actually all about.
And so as to keep the coin of the mystical realm forever spinning in the exhilarating air and not laying inertly on the boring ground, I recommend to you again that you consider the question of whether the final, the big bang enlightenment will come to you in the form of some new knowledge you suddenly realize or in the form of something new that you suddenly realize that you can DO. Additional hint: Since the entire struggle and search for enlightenment take place entirely in your brain might success in the endeavor be in any way connected to where in your brain you stand as you pursue the goal?
12:15 [Reads] Let's be done with it and let me tell you plainly, for best results, here is how it should go: In the beginning you struggle to awaken, then ultimately you struggle to understand what the struggle to awaken is actually about. But wait. Let me be even more direct. This is not the way for best results -- this is the only way for any results.
12:47 [Reads] Perhaps the most dangerous -- if I may use the word -- lies -- if I may use the word -- that the mind can tell is it saying that it understands what being asleep and wanting to awaken is all about. The mind does not and never will understand. Doesn't it make you wonder why it's like this? Doesn't this cause you to think, "Clue! Clue!"? There's got to be a significant clue in this...
14:27 [Reads] Experience the exhilaration and joyful release of confronting directly that most bedeviling of deceptions wherein your mind in essence says that there is a discrete, identifiable 'you' in you and that this you has distinctive characteristics, often unwanted. But just consider: the mind speaks of the matter as though there is a you apart from your characteristics. The mind, what a little rascal. What a little stupid incoherent rascal. Well, yeah, but still, you gotta love 'im.
15:41 It's a variation...on the conscious part of the mind seeing itself as being both a noun and a verb, that is a thing, a mind, that is capable of doing something, of acting, that is, thinking. Whereas I say the two are the same thing...To want to awaken is...for you to believe the fact...that there are characteristics about you that are undesirable...the foolishness of it has to do with the fact that the mind judges that there is a 'you'...and that this you HAS characteristics, speaking as though there is a you apart from characteristics...a person has no you other than your characteristics. They're the same thing...
19:04 No ordinary, sane person is satisfied with himself, satisfied with life...That is...the unrecognized, the never-stated true definition...of sanity...that you are in the middle of the Bell curve in your neighborhood. But still, if you're sane, you're dissatisfied...
23:41 ...you see something and it's defined by what it does, or else it's of no interest to man...[but] the mind [believes] that it is a separate entity from what it does...the mind also sees itself as 'having characteristics'...in the same way the mind says, "I have thoughts."
29:04 How could you describe you or anyone else...if you do not describe characteristics[?]...You dispense with characteristics and nobody's anybody.
30:36 Everybody believes -- remember -- that they HAVE characteristics...
36:51 If you take away...the non-physical characteristics of a man, a human being, a 'you,' a 'self,' an 'I,' I ask you what's left? And I'll answer it: There is nothing.
44:00 Would you not say that the successful completion of all of This would be to have a mind free...of all the undesirable...characteristics...except, take away all the characteristics and what's left?
47:15 A final comment: I stick by one of my other urgings and suggestions, that you cannot do better...than just constantly trying to ask yourself, "What is it...right this second in me that's driving me?" What's making me about to say, "Okay, that's enough," take off the mike and leave?