|Recorded date||January 1976. Original date wrong, was 2/16/76. PZ Newsletter of Feb. 1976 says R returned from L.A. on Feb. 16. UPDATE: Dan says year could not have been 1976. Should be 1979 or 1980.|
|Location||Los Angeles, California|
|Number of tapes||2|
|Other recorders audible?|
|Alternate versions exist?|
|No. of MP3 files||3|
|Total time||32 min + 30 min + 30 min = 92 minutes total|
|Transcription status||Done but don't know who or when. SH: "Seems very familiar - maybe me."|
|Link to distribution copy||http://distribution.direct-mind.org/|
|Link to PDF||http://distribution.direct-mind.org/ Or try http://selfdefinition.org/rose/|
|Published in what book?|
|Published on which website?||SearchWithin.Org as Los Angeles, CA Lecture: Richard Rose. Full lecture is published; none is missing|
|Identifiable voices||Intro by Dan Niebauer|
|URL at direct-mind.org||https://www.direct-mind.org/index.php?title=1976-01-New-Age-Bookstore-Los-Angeles-misdated|
|For access, send email to: firstname.lastname@example.org|
DW version = 6+24+30+30+9=99 min
BM version is 6+24+31+31+12 = 104 = 1 hr 24 min
PS version is 6+24+27 = 57 min
MJ version is 32+30+30 = 91 min
Uses the phrase "conciliatory principle". From search, the earliest other known "conciliatory" is in 1979-0403-Psychology-of-the-Observer-Pittsburgh Check this.
Full lecture is published; none is missing
Dan says year could not have been 1976. Should be 1979 or 1980.
SO ALL OF THE CALCULATIONS BELOW ARE WRONG.
SEE INTRODUCTION FOR NOTES ON OTHER TALKS IN L.A.
When this is figured out, move it to Discussion page.
Link at SearchWithin.Org: http://www.searchwithin.org/download/la_lecture.pdf
Notes on Los Angeles group:
Los Angeles, California: The Philosopher's Stone/Meets weekly. Call 559-9452 (Culver City) for information.
File 0 – Introduction
File 0 = 5 min, 57 minutes
Intro by Dan Niebauer
Good afternoon. I’d like to say a few words about the organization that brings Mr. Rose in here, and a few words about Mr. Rose himself. This organization is called the Philosopher’s Stone, and it’s been around the area here for about three years. And it was founded by a number of people, about three people,** who came from the Ohio, West Virginia, Pennsylvania area, who had gotten together as a direct result of having run across Mr. Rose by one way or another.
[** who? Phil Osgood? plus speaker plus somebody named Dave? ]
And the Philosophers Stone meets here in Los Angeles, actually in Culver City on a weekly basis, but the public meetings are going to be about every two weeks or so. The way to find out where the meetings are is to call either of the numbers you see on the poster. And I think we have some extra posters that we can hand out. We also have an information sheet on the Philosopher’s Stone which will give you more detail on the organization.
We will also have two more lectures ** and one will be this Tuesday [so this would be ] and that will be at the new, what is that new bookstore, David?
Chelsea Bookstore, in Long Beach. And on Thursday, the 22nd, which will be at the United California Bank, the Brentwood branch.
Notes: this is the first talk of 3 or 4 in Los Angeles in Jan-Feb 1976
[ We have Zen and Esoteric Christianity – January 1976 ]
[We also have 1976-0216-Los-Angeles but this date doesn’t coincide with the above. Is is it possible that 2/16 was a 4th lecture? Check tape for clues.]
About five-six years ago I had done aa little bit of reading into the subject of Zen and eastern philosophy, and it sparked my interest – but I hadn’t done anything about it for about a year. And finally I saw a little handwritten notice at a university, the University of Pittsburgh, back east. And I didn’t know what to make of it, but some little voice kept telling me, and saying, “You better go to that. You ought to go there. There’s something very important that’s going to happen, as a result of going there.”
So I went, and I walked into the room, and there were about 20 people seated around the room, and they didn’t seem to be doing anything much except talking among themselves. And they were apparently waiting for somebody. About twenty minutes later the door flies open and there’s this Russian guy who walks in, and right behind him is this short fellow, who has a little beard on. And he doesn’t have much hair on top of his head. But there was something – just like a jolt of electricity went through the room at that time. And everyone just hushed up. And this was Mr. Rose. And I said, “Hmm, okay.”
But the first thing he did, is he asked people to just say a little bit about themselves – what they’d been reading, what they’d been into, that sort of thing. And we went around the room one by one. and the first one would say, “Oh, I’ve been reading a little bit of Kapleau.” And another one’s been reading some of the Christian mystics, etc.
Anyway we went around the room, and not much was said by Mr. Rose. But then he pointed to the first guy and said, “Well, you’ve been reading this, but one of the reasons you’re been reading this is such-and-such.”
And he went around the room and he not only remembered – this was very impressionable to me – because he [not only] remembered what each individual had said, but most importantly, he heard what they were saying behind the words, it wasn’t the words he [the person] was saying. He listened to what each individual was saying right here [points to heart, probably].
This was astounding to me. And this is actually the way we ought to approach what he’s going to talk about today. Don’t listen so much to the words, but listen to what’s behind the words. He’s been on a long path himself; he’s been in this field for a long time. He started – it depends on what you want to say – he started at age 12 when he went into a Catholic seminary; or you might say he started when he was 21, when he started doing yoga. Who’s to say? It might have started before he was born.
But he reached a point of conviction as a result of his years of effort. And it’s this conviction that he brings here. He’s fulfilling a promise to himself – that’s his purpose for coming here. And the promise is to maybe just impart a little bit of what he has found, simply because there are so many groups and so many different people, speaking so many different words.
He’s not promoting a theory or a social outlook or a particular kind of politics, but a kind of a conviction. At this point I’d like to give you a little bit of a warning: He’s a man of conviction, and this sometimes arouses a strong response, either positive or negative. I encourage you all to listen carefully for what’s behind the words.
And finally I’d like to thank the New Age Bookstore for providing the facilities, and allowing us to meat here today.
I give you Mr. Rose.
[ file 0 ends at 05:58 ]
Most of you are new to me; we've never met before, and beyond a doubt everybody comes in from a different perspective. I've given quite a few talks all over the country, and have come away after each one with the feeling that I only communicated with a fraction of the people, because of language. Everyone talks a different language.
So I've always been laboriously looking for some way to get around this difference in language. I have a system of thinking on psychology, which I'm very happy to share; I'm very happy to go to whatever strain is necessary to communicate it to you. The general diagram of it is in Figure 1 (see "Jacob's Ladder" in Psychology of the Observer).
I also talked about this the other night to a little group, and again came away with a feeling that unless someone had done similar thinking, similar reading, in an intense desire to understand psychology - not in the way it's written by the so-called authorities...
Authorities are generally political in source. By that I mean that we have a political psychological atmosphere. Our sociology is political. Politics determines; funding sometimes even determines. And when it gets down into what I consider the more sacred sciences, psychology is one of them. It's the mind. This is a sacred territory; we don't need politics with its funding pressures to call the shots. We're interested, I hope, in what the mind is, and not what we should vote it to be by democratic agreement.
I were take you through, to explain me, my conviction, my findings - it's perhaps a rather complex thing; which would take many many hours of bringing our heads together, number one. Because we've got a different interpretation of the word sanity, for instance.
Sanity is a very loose word; I've talked to a lot of psychiatrists, and never found a single one who had defined it. Yet they're shooting people with hypodermics and feeding them pills. To get predictable results, they think, on the surface, but what are the results under the surface, or later on?
But anyhow, in talking to people I prefer a sort of dialogue, because in a situation where you can talk or you can ask questions, I get an idea where you're coming from; I'll possibly intuit a language or choice of words, reference points, if possible, by which I can communicate with you. But for a man to get up in front of a group of people and preach - this can be monotonous and irritating as hell. And yet talk is necessary.
What we're dealing with is perspectives. I made a few notes on them, on perspectives, in the hope of, because of the knowledge of the differences in perspectives, possibly finding a way of coming together in a single perspective for an hour or so.
I have some questions in regard to that. I put them in question form, because I'm not saying this is, necessarily. It's bad when you say something definitely is, in all instances, because in subjective matters especially, somebody else's opinion might get you to the same point. Even though it seems to be diametrically opposite, you may ultimately come to the same point in thinking.
1. What liabilities are incurred with unavoidable states of mind?
We all come here with a state of mind. And you're not going to change it in five minutes.
2. Are perspectives rooted in valid bases and definitions, or in indefinable feelings which may be as meaningful as definitions?
All of us here are old enough to have developed a philosophy of life. And we like to think that this is highly logical. Then you run into another fellow who has a perspective or conviction strictly from feeling. He doesn't make any pretense of logic. And after you suffer the fellow - if you don't agree with him immediately you might suffer for a while - you find out that you agree with him, or that you're talking the same language. I've had this happen repeatedly.
What is meaning? When we talk, say, about the mind, what are we talking about? Everybody has a slightly different understanding, and there are different understandings for the mind and I think some of them are valid. I see two or three definite minds. So when one person is using the word mind he might be referring to Mary Baker Eddy's "Universal Mind". Another might be referring to the objective psychologist's somatic mind.
The same with our appreciation of things like colors. Or pleasure. What do you mean by the words "high" or "green"? Do we know that all people see the same color green? The only thing we know is that we all do respond, pretty much. But what does the fellow actually see when he sees green?
Why do some perfumes seem to attract some people and irritate others? And a lot of them do irritate you after you've been exposed to them for a while.
3. What is beauty?
Everybody's talking about the ideal parts of life and the aspects of life like the nice things, that everybody's going to get for themselves and for their neighbor. What is beauty? I used to say it's the degree of refraction by which light comes to the eyes. Looking at the outside of the skin it looks pretty good, but if you peel it off and look at it from underneath it might not look so good.
4. What is goodness?
Is goodness recognized by the cat the same as goodness recognized by the mouse?
5. How do perspectives affect science?
I see this in science, which is supposed to be perfect: people come in with different perspectives. On the same day on the radio I heard one man say our temperature was changing; that possibly - I didn't get into all the details - if we had four consecutive cold winters, we'd have an ice age of some sort. That the earth was swinging away from the sun, possibly, or something was happening. Another fellow said the ice cap is going to melt, and in so many years, unless they can stop this smog and air pollution, Atlantic City will be under water, the coastal plateaus will be flooded.
So these are perspectives in science by people who spend their entire lives studying it.
6. What is wisdom?
I presume this is what we're trying to do in this work - to get the best answer. And is wisdom a foolishness? A lot of people after living sixty or seventy years, say everything is foolishness. Your perspective changes. The wisdom of the twenty-year-old boy becomes idiocy to a seventy or eighty-year old man.
7. Is wisdom a wasted achievement unless it is restricted to objective or material values?
We define our wisdom - some people do - in terms of how many millions it will make you, and the idiot is the guy who winds up with nickels. Or is wisdom the man who gets along with his fellowman? Some think that's a form of wisdom.
Now we talk about perspectives on authority. A man quotes, he throws something out at you, and he says, "This is what they say." And everyone shudders and remains silent.
When you get into psychology, I've got a dual path here that I'm talking about. You'll notice in the diagram up at the top is the word Absolute. Down at the bottom (line A-B) we have simple psychology. And I maintain that you can attain or reach an absolute objective by beginning with a simple analysis of a somatic self.
I was talking with one of the fellows here last night, and he said, "I saw that diagram, and I can't see - you've got the word Intuition there and on up it seems even harder to understand, something about Unmanifested Mind." And I said, "Stay off of those upper steps. You're not supposed to be up there at all; this is a diagram of probability or possibility."
But the lower triangle (A-B-C) is very apparent. Our whole life is in a relative dimension (line A-B) and this is where we lay. Not even up into the pyramid. We wallow eternally between the positives and the negatives, between masculinity and femininity, between concepts of goodness or bad, propitiousness or unpropitiousness, light and darkness, and all this sort of thing. So that we never reach a united type of sanity. Which is the thing up at the top (point C).
Now why am I mentioning all of this? Because - where is the perspective that you run into in most of the philosophy, or let's say theology that you encounter? God is postulated before proving him; this is what you run into. And we are hushed into silence. We don't dare say anything, because so many people believe.
And of course this is the difference. When Dan said in the introduction that I'm a rebel, that's my rebellion. I maintain that I'm ignorant. And that's where I started from - ignorance, not wisdom.
You contemplate what's in front of you, not something way up above. That's the reason I say the figure has no meaning, except as something I discovered. It's like the Katzenjammer Kids, it's a cartoon. But maybe something's in it for you too, I don't know. It may have some meaning.
You cannot contemplate God. Much less legislate that you don't dare say anything contrary. Because you get authorities. What's an authority? A man who sweats or wallows through six or eight years of college. He may have been drunk all the time he was in there, but when he comes out he's a theologian and he's an authority. And he says, "God told me to tell you."
And people say, "Ok, whatever you say." You see what's going on over in Iran. You've got rule from possibly a subjective state or a subjective dimension.
So what else do we postulate? We postulate that wisdom is decided by democratic process. We have the best system on earth; all we have to do is vote. And this permeates, unfortunately, the study of psychology. Psychological findings today are the result of the acceptance of the normal curve. And normal is that which is 51 percent or more of the behavior. So that when 51 percent of the people become murderers, or anything else, it is normal.
Consequently psychology has ceased, at least in that degree. Now I'm not saying Carl Jung, for instance, would approve of that, but I'm saying this is a trend. That we have decided that the human collective mind is infallible. Instead of saying that the truth is the truth, in the year 1000, in the year 1500, in the year 2000, the year 3000 or 10,000. Truth is the truth; it doesn't change because it's unpopular at the moment.
What constitutes the human mind is as unchangeable as the protoplasm in that human's body. If you take a chemical analysis of it, you might have a different reading, say, in the year 1800, you might have a different concept of the blood circulation or something, which may have been what I call relative truth at that time. But as you approach it, it becomes closer to absolute truth.
Question: How can you say truth doesn't change?
Rose: Just by virtue of its definition.
Q: So? Some thing's true one day and not true another day...
R: No, no. The conclusion was not true the other day. Truth itself doesn't change.
R: Well, let me put something this way. Maybe I'm crazy. But let me run through this little bit of craziness, and if you don't approve of it and don't get anything from it, I'll apologize. But I don't really intend to try to prove to you a whole lot. I'm going to throw something out. If it looks good to you, Ok. If it doesn't - you've wasted your time. And maybe even I have, to a certain extent.
The same thing has to do with some other of our concepts about attitudes and authority. Our concepts of love. And a lot of our social study of interrelations between people and this sort of thing is not dependent upon a true understanding of people, but something perhaps that we'd prefer to have. We don't particularly want the truth; we want a certain state of things to exist.
8. Does a man love? Or is he even capable of loving? Or does a man desire to be loved?
Who loves more, the lover or the tick? Does a tick love a dog - or the blood? He sticks pretty close. And some people in their human relationships stick very close. But maybe it's parasitical.
9. Is love of every and any kind programmed?
Have we got any choice in this matter? We think we're doing things. Are we doing things?
10. Is there only one dimension?
Now the reason I'm questioning this - in the human effort, whether it's philosophical, religious, or what, there seems to be an effort for action. Now what is the difference in these types of actions? There are differences in perspective, and what's the difference in the type of action?
I maintain that action without definition is foolish. This is what you have - that people are acting and not defining what they're doing. To give you an example, a person says, "We're going to make the world safe for democracy. That's our group. Our little group is going to make the world safe for democracy."
Another group says, "We're going to serve God." They haven't defined what they're going to serve. Another thing that is very important that nobody hardly thinks about - they haven't defined the seeker, or the one who's trying to serve. The potentials and capabilities of that person to do anything, much less to serve a subjective, almost unattainable thing.
Now don't get the idea that I'm negating God. I'm not saying that there is none. I'm saying it's foolish to postulate. Definition should precede action; at least some common sense attempt at it.
11. Does not the possibility of multiple dimensions weaken our significance and our pretended potential for controlling our environment?
Now that may not sound like too much. In other words, we seem to labor under the idea that we're in a restricted environment; that there's only one dimension, the material world. And all we have to do is conquer that material world. And some people go so far as to say there is no mind beyond the body, the somatic mind. So all we have to do is learn to manipulate the somatic mind, and possibly the somatic minds of other people, and we've got everything under control.
But we're not taking into consideration the possibility of multiple dimensions - that the mind itself may be a dimension, number one - it may be something besides the body. But there may be other dimensions besides that. If there are - then we have factors, multiple factors, never taken into consideration.
In other words there might be a God up there, there might be a chief engineer, who draws the blueprint or changes it occasionally or something of that sort. And we're down here saying, "Let's work our pencil on the blueprint."
12. What is God. What are His dimensions?
13. What is a soul?
Everybody has one. You go back to Frazier's Golden Bough, you find out that man endowed himself with a soul rather young, in the early stages. I'm not saying he doesn't have it, but he endows himself. He doesn't wait and define it. Every man has the responsibility of finding his soul.
R: Let me finish, please. I'm doing this for the purpose of questions. Also let me say something else: I've come here to inform and to share; I haven't come here to argue. And I will answer until ten o'clock tonight or until they throw us out of the building, if necessary, any questions. Except pointed questions and loaded questions and egotistically inspired questions.
In other words, I'm not here to deny that other people are smarter than I. They may well be smarter. And I'm not pointing at you; I just wanted to say that while I was saying it. We can't get anyplace if we're going to all of us have a battle of egos.
The point of it is I do want questions. I think the communication here will be questions and I want the dialogue, but I want to run through these, and then if somebody can remember a point we'll go back to that and take it up from there.
14. What is thought?
This is something I'd like to propose to every psychiatrist. I had one fellow tell me he had a drug for every thought. But he didn't know the definition of thought. So he didn't know the definition of sanity.
15. What is mind? What are its limits, its dimensions?
16. What are we implying when we say, "I think"?
17. Is thought a possession, or an obsession?
18. Does a man think, or is he a thought?
Now these are not just idle little koans, thrown out here. It's very possible that we're obsessed with thinking. Especially if you're an alcoholic and you need a drink. You'll become obsessed with thinking. And you'll still think that you are the guy who wants the drink.
19. What is sanity? The normal curve? Somatic healthiness ?
20. Could sanity ever mean that state of mind with perfect understanding of all problems? A state of mind in which the altering lens of ego has been removed from our mental vision or perception?
We see a lot of stuff through our ego. Do we incorporate ego into sanity? Is the egotistical person insane - to a degree? Not really badly insane, but doesn't that somewhat color his thinking processes?
21. Could a state of sanity ever be approached?
That's the next thing. Supposing there is a state whereby we have an ability to more perfectly view all problems. As we would approach engineering problems, with a slide rule. Is there a slide rule called sanity by which we could approach our problems ?
22. Would such a version of sanity imply the need of perfected logic - or perfected intuition?
We're going to do it with logic alone? Well, what is intuition ? We've been discussing this quite a bit lately. One fellow says, "Do you know that you know?"
And I say, "It isn't so much that you know that you know that you know; simply as that you have a direct mind evaluation, instead of a indirect mind evaluation."
23. How would a person who is possessed of this version of sanity find for himself answers to such questions as God definitions and essence definitions?
Supposing we postulated for the time being that there is such a thing. And the reason I say it's possible to postulate this is from what I call a theory of progression. That if there are smarter people, there must be even smarter people. So that you have a progression that arrives somewhere close to the Absolute.
They talk in mathematics of taking a distance, say, two inches from a wall, and cutting it in half, and keep cutting that in half. And they argue mathematically, "Does the man ever reach the wall, or is there always half of something left?"
Well, the same thing with the approach to sanity. If there are people who are more sane than others, is it possible by progression to reach the totality? And with that slide rule to properly evaluate such things as man's own essence.
This has been the effort that has been tried and claimed. That certain people have reached the answer. Not necessarily that they claimed to have perfect logic, or even perfect intuition. They may have had an indescribable accident.
24. How would such sanity-potential effect peace of mind, ideal health patterns, or physical security plans?
file dw1 ends at 24:11
There are several movements that talk about the perfected man. I remember years ago I was looking into the Universal Brotherhood, and they had this talk of the perfected man, who was supposed to wind up doing everything just right and having the proper answers; he was a successful businessman, a happily married man, and everything else. Is it possible, such a sanity, that would bring us to that?
25. What is the relationship between thought and mind? Are they the same? Is thought a mind-extrusion?
We get into some ideas about thought: Is this an extrusion of the mind? Or an emission like a broadcast from an electronic broadcasting tower? Or is it projected something like light from a lamp?
26. Is thought synaptic?
The reason I'm going into this is that this is psychology. This is the basis of psychology.
27. Is thought synaptic reaction to an electrical stimulation? Meaning - is thought something like an electrical impulse?
Now, even more important:
28. Do we willfully think?
And if you think you do, try to stop. Try to stop now. Just say, "I'm going to stop thinking." Or predict that at a certain time tomorrow you're going to wake up and start thinking. See if it's possible.
29. If we cannot start or stop thinking, how can we take so much responsibility for our decisions?
Unless we are able to take something and willfully study it, not being inspired to by some event, which may already be colored, then we do not know from what viewpoint we start the investigation.
30. Is it possible that the people who realize that they cannot make decisions are the ones that eventually may find ways and means to make decisions?
The people who protest that they're able to make decisions always seem to me the people who make the wrong decisions. Where people who say, "I'm not so sure of myself" - because they don't have too much of a platform to stand on, in that they don't have any prejudiced thinking on either scientific side of the coin - may find ways and means later on.
31. If we think about thought, is thought then objective and separate from the thinking self?
This is a serious question. Because this is the process by which this thing we're discussing goes on. It becomes an objective study of the self. Or a study of the objective self, if you want to call it that; whatever you see being objective.
32. Is there is a thinking self, or only an awareness that witnesses thoughts?
What watches thought? Is this a thinking self that watches it, or is it just awareness?
What we're doing here is not studying theology or something, but actually looking inside and saying, "What goes on when I think?"
Is there a thinking, cognitive, logical self that examines our thoughts, or does it just boil back to an awareness of something going on, out front? Something out there, that we can observe.
33. When a man asks himself a question, are there two people or selves involved - one who speaks and one who hears?
Now that may sound strange, but people like Gurdjieff have claimed that there were several I's or egos that were sometimes in communication with each other, sometimes in conflict. But that we aren't a single individual.
This is not a new concept, in other words, of the different voices within man. For instance, the stomach rebels against the sex organs, perhaps, or the head rebels against another part of the body. And there are certain voices representative of those things.
34. If there is such a conglomerate of selves - supposing that we take that, momentarily, the Gurdjieffian principle of the many selves, or whatever they are, the ghosts inside of us - how do we isolate then the real one?
They're all taking turns talking. So which one do we encourage to talk, and to which one do we say, "You're not real, you're a phony; the real one is really me."
It's like the fellow, supposing he's an alcoholic, who says, "I want a drink. That's me." Or: "When I can no longer drink, let somebody shoot me, because that's my real pleasure." Ok - he gets drunk, he gets sick, and as he's got a hangover, and he says, "I hope I never see another bottle of booze."
Now here's an opposite philosophy coming up. And you say, "Well, you said you wished you could spend your last days drinking."
"Oh, hell, I'm crazy. Don't pay any attention to that." Meaning there's another guy who's crazy.
So the thing is to determine of these different voices in the conglomerate, the real self. How do you go about that? What leverage, what tools do you use to pry them apart and keep them apart?
Keep reminding yourself, always, "Yesterday I said that was a negative self; that wasn't the real guy that I want to be in charge of my vehicle."
35. Are spiritual achievement and psychological clarity arrived simultaneously?
You hear of these great spiritual experiences. When people have those - are they psychologically wise? Or can we have a spiritually enlightened person who is manifestly wrong about the things in his head?
I wasn't a student of the Bible until much later in life; after I went through a lot of this stuff I used to go back and read segments of the Bible. I also read other works of enlightened men, or men who seemed to have the answer. And I catch this echo in there; these people were psychologists. They became aware of the outer dimensions, but they also became aware of the inner dimensions, so to speak.
36. And can one bring about the effect from the other?
Can psychological clarity bring spiritual clarity automatically? If so, then that's a path. Can spiritual clarity bring psychological clarity? Then Ok, let's get it down into our psychology majors, if that's what it takes; if that's part of the deal.
We come now to the crux of our questioning. That is:
37. Direct mind cognition in relation to true sanity - is such possible? And spiritual realization - is it possible to realize it by any means?
I think, of course, that what you have to do - again, I draw diagrams and I make noises, but I think each man has to find things for himself.
Maybe when you're going through a jungle, if you can get somebody who knows a particular section of the jungle it may save you losing some time or getting injured. But I don't think there's anything satisfying about piling up a lot of objective knowledge about what somebody else believes. Some conception. Until those conceptions, let's say, had the same substance to them as an irreversible spiritual realization. That the man knows beyond a shadow of a doubt that he's right.
And I don't think we've quite progressed that far. But I still think that the basic psychology starts with the self. And without predetermined definitions.
There are some things that are evident. For instance, I don't think that we have to deny our existence; we don't have to deny we're standing on the ground. And there are certain things we can't deny in that there are two sides of a relative coin. We are relative people in a relative dimension, trying to talk about a non-relative dimension.
I'm talking about the mind. The mind is subjective. But it's based entirely upon a relationship with the relative dimension. The mind is watching the relative earth, or the relative dimension.
I liken this to the camera analogy of Ramana Maharshi. You go back through the eye of the observer. You have to see what the observer's looking at, and you go back through that to get the interpretation. Then you understand or study why the decision of the somatic mind is made. You get a little insight then into your mind.
Then when you become more aware of the somatic mind, it's possible that you're aware of something else, which is an intuitive type of thinking process.
The basis of what I'm getting at is outlined in the drawing. The thing is, you don't go externally for knowledge; you go inside.
Now this is an old saying, "going inside". And there are many methods of going inside. So you can take your pick; whatever appeals to your intuition. It may be concentrating on a nerve center, it may be self-hypnosis; there are different things you can try, for their effect. You can try all of them in fact, if you wish to. But I think that there is a very direct way, and that is by watching your actions.
Now I want to invite any questions that you might have, or any comments.
Q: You mentioned Gurdjieff's theory of the different I's. Then you said, "How are you to know which one you'd like to steer the vehicle?" Well, that's a concept you have about one driving the vehicle. It could be, say, four.
R: That's true. I say this, of course, because most people like to believe that they're not fragmented.
Q: I mention this because it's as if there are different ones, but there aren't; and these have to merge.
R: Well, sure. But we have to start from somewhere. I think when you finally may have a realization, you realize that each individual is only part. Whether he is four, five, or one - even that one is only part of a total mass of something like a universal mind. Or - if you want to call it God....
As for the hunger for the ego of singularity, for instance, we like to believe that we're only one. We have no proof of it - you're right in that.
This incidentally is what Gurdjieff implied. That proper treatment of the egos was not the elimination so much as the fusion. The understanding of all plus the use of all. [Break in tape\
(Rose) ...how can you use some? Or can a man use them all? And I didn't hear that properly explained. I ran into that first in In Search of the Miraculous, I think, by Ouspensky. So I don't know...
But what I am getting at is that basically we look upon ourselves as a single body. So consequently we like to believe that there's a single unit of intelligence or spark of life that is identified with that single body. And sure, we understand that maybe there are forces or energies or parasitical entities, let's say, living within that body. But the individual is not too happy with that. So instinctively he looks for his individuality and his singleness.
And as I said, I do believe that after many years of the pursuit of his singleness, he finds out that he's only a part of a total. You become one with God, they say. That's the idea. You become part of something greater.
Q: Definitions should exist before action - is that what you said?
Q: So taking into account that language produces...
Q: ...meaning, which is not agreed upon the same by any two people - would you concede that?
Q: Then how are we to move towards an Absolute when there is no consensus-reality?
R: Well, one of the first things that you do, of course, is to realize that there is no consensus. As I said, nobody sees the color green the same - we don't know whether they do. And as for about an appreciation of beauty - nobody knows what the other fellow's appreciation is.
But regardless, there is a common definition, it's the dictionary. And there is a science, a psychological science, whether it's true or false. But one of the first things that happens in the pursuit of this definition is the recognition that all wisdom, including definitions in dictionaries, is relative and then circular. It's not going to take you anyplace.
A definition implies that which a thing is, and it also implies that which a thing is not. For instance, an Airedale is a dog but we say it's not only a dog, but it's not a cat, it's not an elephant.
Consequently, all of this incessant welter of going back and through in life, of definitions, is not the type of definition we're going at. But there's a definition spoken or implied, that man will, through the incessant contemplation of the negative and positive...
We discover in the final analysis, that this is only a headache exercise. In Zen they talk about confusing the mind to a point where the mind explodes. And when the mind explodes you have the definition, for the first time.
Q: I understand all the numerous analogies that surround us every day: how a computer functions, light versus darkness, thousands of metaphors we can attribute to this polarization...
R: Right. That's the binary theory of the negative and the positive.
Q: Now I maintain, and only on intuitive grounds, I have no facts for this, that our perception of a polarity is merely our perception. We only view visible life, and we cannot see the whole spectrum of phenomena that surrounds us. We seem to see a negative versus positive, but in actuality it's not a polarity.
R: You're absolutely right; I'm not arguing with you at all. I'm saying that this is the only way we can begin.
For instance, the mind of the child, in my estimation, is very close to being highly intuitive and possible even in touch with an absolute dimension. And we seduce this child and take him into school and teach him the positive and the negative. And we pound that into him for years and years, until he becomes an electronic technician with his binary theory.
But much later, if he's really interested in definition, he's going to get up to a point where he sees that his mind isn't solving the problem. So it's as you said, the intuition coming in here is necessary. And now he thinks, "Oh, I've got it," and he has another plane that he vacillates on.
This goes on until he starts observing what he's doing. And then he becomes in contact with awareness. Now this (point G on Jacob’s Ladder) just looks like a point on a line. But actually this is an experience. When he truly experiences awareness, and is still able to remember all of this other stuff, then the definition is there. He knows for the first time in his life who he is.
Now that's what I meant by definition. Ok, then after you know who you are, go out in life and act. Then go out and do something. But everybody goes out - takes a shot at somebody else, or destroys another man's business, or pretends to sit in judgment on him. And all this sort of thing comes from people who don't know who they are.
Unfortunately, we can't expect them to. But it's a protest with me that people are acting without knowledge of the essence of being.
Of course, you talk to the judge that says, "I'm going to sentence you to hang." He sits in judgment on you. You talk to him and he's going to hit you with some logic, and you'll stagger away thinking, "I can't argue, the guy's right." But basically, intuitively, you can just take a look at him and say, "This guy's snowing himself." Maybe he's got to snow himself in order to get that job done.
But this is everyplace you go. Whether it's in psychology or wherever. I don't care what they do in the courtroom; I don't care how many people shoot and kill each other. Because this may be a necessary part of the vegetable processes. But when they get down into what I consider the sacred sciences, with this same type of thinking, of acting before they define themselves...
A man makes a fortune, teaching people about God. He makes millions. And I'm wondering how much he knows. I'm wondering why he takes this action - when he doesn't have the goods, so to speak.
Q: Pardon me. I agree with you in principle about the man making millions. But doesn't he have the goods? Might he have the goods?
R: Well, we don't know.
Q: (Discussion among audience about TV preachers.)
R: Oh, I can't clean up the mess. I'm just throwing it out here. (Laughs) There's nothing I can do about it.
Q: Well, you're saying, "This is the way it is." Or are you saying, "That's the way it is, but it could be different, and here I am, and I'd like to..." Is that what you're saying?
R: What I'm saying is that I discovered. And I don't know how many can discover through the same procedure. But I feel compelled to pass on my discovery, or insanity, to somebody else.
Q: Are you helping them to discover themselves?
R: Yes, yes. Not me. Forget about me. I'm not going to do anything. If I'm a catalyst it's because I said something that awoke a chain reaction in the head or something like that, that got them thinking, got them moving, got them observing.
Q: Maybe you should say something to one of those very rich ones up there...
R: Well - I don't think it would do too much good to the rich ones. Because first of all, the million or ten million that they've got may seem like a divine approbation. "If I had been doing wrong God wouldn't have given me the ten million."
Or twenty million. I don't know how they justify it.
Q: How is it possible to watch your actions and learn from it without deluding yourself?
R: Good. Ok. Now, I maintain that we do delude ourselves. And how we get around it is this: First of all, this whole thing is based upon a premise, if you want to call it that, and I think you can understand it as soon as I state it, that the view is not the viewer.
In other words, whenever you see something or experience something, and this goes clear through to what I call the experience of cosmic consciousness, the experience of ecstasy - this is not you. This is a visit. You're visiting a dimension, like heaven.
For instance, I maintain that the body is external. A lot of people don't like to admit that at first. But you can cut a piece of it off and keep on going. And it's amazing how much of it you can lose, provided you don't lose it all at once. So this body is manifestly not us.
Now, I'm not going to go into the relation - whether we have it or it has us.
But also - we are able to observe our thoughts. And after a prolonged meditational process we are able to observe our mind. Which I as a young man refused to believe. I said, "I am my mind." Now you don't watch it like you'd watch that blue carpet, but after awhile you're able to watch it. And this observer (point E) shows you what's going on.
Now down here (line A-B) is the negative and positive; this is where you have to start, and this is where everybody starts whether they want to or not. It starts with simple little things like the body. You have to make a decision. And at the top of the triangle (point C) is what we call the Umpire.
There was a fellow by the name of Benoit who wrote a book on Zen (The Supreme Doctrine). And in it he had a little diagram, a little triangle, where life was the endless line of polarity, endless negativity, endless positivity, which would never do anything for the human being if there weren't what he called the conciliatory principle.
The conciliatory principle is the ability to judge from a detached state of being. Now if you want to study material, you almost have to look at it from non-material viewpoints. Material does not define material. Same way as a cat doesn't define a dog. The cat is not a dog. So if there were nothing but people, we wouldn't have the same understanding of people, except that we wouldn't be rocks, then.
By the same token, if you define a person as a being on a material planet, in a material galaxy, in a material universe, you still haven't defined that person. Because this entire galaxy, person and all - we don't know what the substance is. But when viewed from a spiritual realm you get an entirely different concept. For the first time you may get a real definition. For instance, my understanding of this physical body, plane, planet, galaxy, is that it's a mental experience.
So after you view it from the mental experience you may discover that it is a projection - from something like an unmanifested type of mind experience.
I don't know how many of you have seen a materialization in a séance. I have seen these, years ago. I described them in my book. Eighteen of these creatures came in, talked to some people, poof, one of them went through the floor, one of them exploded...
Now of course you can always say, "Hey, you're kidding yourself." But let's apply something then more tangible, like an electrical cloud. These electrical clouds that they have in electronic work...
Q: A plasma?
R: Right. If there is a dimension - just say if the entity that came through that materialization, as he protests - he comes from another dimension. He says, "Just by accident you're able to see me." Now if this is true, we know darn well that he doesn't have the same definition of our existence as we have. There's no two ways about it.
This is the protest of all the spiritual systems. That looking at life from death is an entirely different view. It isn't as important - things aren't as important as we make them, and the coloration is different and everything.
And the same thing would apply on a physical basis. That we can't define the earth from another earth, because you're dealing in terms of earths. The only way you can get a clear definition is from something detached entirely from that. Another type of universe, perhaps composed of different materials. Then you would define that in the comparison of these weird materials that we don't have in our nuclear chart.
And say, "That universe is composed of nickel, iron, and so on, whereas this other universe is composed of that genus and species of planets." Or, "That universe is composed of projected thoughts, whereas this universe is composed of essence." Something entirely different.
These possibilities mean that you have to have this conciliatory principle. You have to have something watching the two extremes.
So what happens is that this goes on whether you want it to or not. As I said, you take an instance that goes on within the body. I use the terms sex and hunger. A person gets to be a certain age and they find sex. So they say, "Hurray," and they go out on a picnic. And they lose their job, and they get hungry, and another voice starts talking. And says, "You were wrong. You're going to die, unless you stop playing and start working, start getting some food."
So this fellow up at the top (point C), this conciliatory principle, is the Umpire. We notice, if we observe our self, that something up there is saying, "Yesterday you were wrong, today you're right." There's an observing process going on inside the mind; a decision making process that has to do with the perpetuation of that body. That's all it is; it's a somatic mind.
Now as a result of that little operation laws are created. For example, laws that relate to sexual activity. Which they may chop the head off for in Arabia; I heard that the other day - they chopped the guy's head off.
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So the head says, so to speak, "Hey!" to the rest of the body. "Behave yourself or I'll get chopped off."
This is all somatic mind. But once you step up there and observe this process, of the mind umpiring an act, you're immediately behind it. It's automatic. As long as you can see nothing but positive and negative, you don't know there's an umpire. But just by accident, perhaps, you happen to see this process. You say, "Hey, I'm thinking about this judgment situation; I'm thinking about this decision." Then immediately you're behind it. You're observing.
That becomes an anterior observer. You're watching yourself doing something; it's objective and it's outside and it's not you, and you know it's not you. So the umpire is not you.
And so then you say, "Well, I'm beyond that, but I don't know just where I am."
What you're on is another line (line C-D). You're operating now from a kind of logic - that your body is governed by logic that says, "This is life and this is death," in the decision making of balancing things so that you neither live forever nor die too soon - and you identify possibly something as intuition, that helps you pick this up.
This is the opposite: the logical mind on one hand, the intuitive mind on the other. And then in all decisions, all thinking processes - there's something in between that plane of recognition.
All experiences - you decide definitely that you're going quit eating meat or start eating macrobiotics because it's logical - or you're going to get an inspiration that you should go down to a certain church and be saved - whatever it is, this is going to be your plane of reference.
That is, until you observe that, that you're doing. And as soon as you observe it you're immediately elevated above it in the point of that conciliatory principle again. You're judging.
You're judging now your logic - just like the fellow said, the logic is imperfect - then you judge the intuition. The intuition is limited and impure at times; you have to perfect it, check it out. So there's another guy doing that. There's another self.
Now it doesn't go on forever, because that's the last; the person that's watching the processes. There is something behind the last ego, and that's awareness. And the combination - the process observer in combination with awareness, means the guy's not giving up yet. He still has some questions, he's still fighting for answers, he's still wanting to know who he is. "Is there anybody behind, watching me? Is there another anterior self behind that, or is there nothing else but pure awareness?"
And because you don't have any answer - nobody knows who they are, maybe at that point never expects to find out who they are - but by the persistent sticking that problem into the computer, on that binary system: "What is the relation between pure awareness, which I may be, I seem to be aware, and the pointed observer/awareness?" - you continue to analyze all of them. And all at once the thing pops.
Now this is the path to Sahaja Samadhi. There's no reason or rhyme to it. But at a given time this awareness pops and you are one with Oneness. And that's the end of the trip.
Q: I sort of embarked upon this process myself. I suppose you could say I was all the way up to the process-observer point for a while. Never satisfied, always evaluating many different types of feelings, including intuitive feelings that negated all of the empirical data I had accumulated.
Q: But then, all of these things started to overload. I started to not be able to function on an everyday, practical...
R: Right. That's right.
Q: In fact, the ability of my mind to function in an empirical, linear fashion in a way that the University requires, began to break down. So again, instead of being able to keep going, I had to...
Q: Right. I had to retreat. And so I find myself slightly frustrated. Because at times I dip right back down to the bottom again.
R: Sure, sure. And if you reach the top you'd go back down to the bottom again. You can't live without eating at the table and going to the toilet and your body functioning the same as it did before. And you're going to have to retreat to that set of values, and daily compare the positive and the negative again. Until the day you die.
Q: (A different person.) I think you kind of reach another dimension. But you'll still be in the same place you were, and you'll still have to cope. But as for what he said about adding to the computer and things getting harder, I don't see that. As you get the thing working things become easier, not harder. And the mind doesn't overload, because you were working against yourself in the first place, but now it's working with ideas that make it easier.
But it should become easier. And the intuition mixes with the logic. And I don't believe in positive/negative. Because if you believe it then you're going to look for it.
R: Let me say something to the other fellow, because he posed a problem. I don't know how much you're acquainted with Zen, but this process was demonstrated in the lives of people who reached the maximum enlightenment, or Sahaja Nirvikalpa Samadhi.
The thing happened to each person pretty much as you described. In that they saw the foolishness of life, they intuited a path but it didn't work, they approached a point in which their head, everything, all the stuff hit the fan - and they were overcome and they couldn't continue. It was either trust yourself to accident or death, or get back and grab a hold of something tangible.
R: Now strangely enough, in the Zen path, so many scholars having described this to the three or six thousand students in some of the monasteries in China, they devised a system of deliberately bombing the head. And it was the exercise of attaining no-mind, which I don't approve of. I don't approve of trying to make your mind go blank.
The understanding is that when you reach the point of no mind, the All-Mind invades it, and you know everything. But you can't go about it just by simulating, taking a symptom. You have to do it as you did it, but have faith in it and in yourself, regardless of whether you go insane, drop dead, get thrown out of college, whatever. Persist. Keep that computer going.
And what happens is the head explodes. Not the physical head, but the comprehensiveness.
Q: Are you implying that self-esteem, if I could use that category, is related to intuition? That the malfunction of intuition...
R: Your intuition wasn't perfected; or possibly your time hadn't come. I made a decision when I was twenty-one years of age - looking ahead and reading books about people who had gotten into raja yoga and that sort of thing, and people who had gotten into Christian mysticism and were written off as nuts - that I very possibly could be written off as a nut. That I could get into prostate cancer or something and die. And I said, "So what? I don't want to live undefined. I'll take the chance."
You walk right up to the edge and you say, "Hey, my head's coming apart." And you get frightened. But that total lonesomeness takes you away from all of your contact with relativity. That lonesomeness is, that your essence is separated for all time from this relative thing, including your dear relatives, your dear children that may come or may have been here already, your possessions, everything. So you may lose all that, including your degree in the university.
But once you return - just like he says, he's coming in from a point which is very valid too - that once you get there you realize there is no positive and negative. And that's part of the new definition that you have.
Do you understand what I'm talking about, then? That when a person says there is no positive and negative, he's transcended the positive and negative. Which we know in chemistry is there; in mathematics it's there. But in a spiritual realization, once you reach that, there are no positives and negatives.
For instance, I'll say that a guy who shortchanges me is a thief, maybe. But there are no bad people; I know that implicitly. There are no bad people and there are no good people. But we've still got to live in this good/bad world.
Q: Do you think that we're sort of fooling ourselves, coming to these lectures and reading books and trying to work on ourselves? I have a feeling that if I got to that point, where my mind was threatened, I'd be frightened too, and set back.
R: Sure. Now that's the reason for the so-called monastery and ashrams. A lot of people sensed this, that they'd want to be alone at that time. So they had somebody standing close to them, so when the guy said, "I'm scared stiff," why he says, "Well, if you die I'll bury you." (Laughter.)
It's just like a guy taking another person through an acid trip. You say, "Now you're going to encounter such-and-such a little bug along the road, and don't jump through the window, because you'll come back, and everything will be all right."
Q: The whole issue of the realm of emotions versus cognitive thought, or empirical thought - versus the meditative state, which is neither - the thing that throws me is the flooding of emotions, actually, that causes downfall. It stopped my cognitive, empirical powers of mind from functioning.
R: Well, of course, that stops you anyhow. That's what they call the death. See, I always say - you have to do a lot of this so-called empirical or logical thinking - that you have to fatten up the head before the head is cut off. The head has to be fattened up for some reason before you chop it off.
You can't just say. "Well, I'm going to be zero." You can't just go out and dissipate, and blow all your energy and say, "It doesn't matter what happens to me, whether a guy chops off my hand or chops off part of my mentality, or a drug blows part of my brains away." No, no. You have to concentrate.
Buddha made a remark - supposedly, I don't know whether he did or not, but it's in his books. He said, "First you have to learn to think of one thing; then you have to learn to think of everything; then you have to learn to think of nothing."
Now that's translated. I have another explanation for it. It's first you have to be one-pointed; you have to be determined and you have to have a single objective. In the pursuit of that single objective you have to study the universe. You can't leave a stone unturned or a book unread, if that's what it takes, or a exercise unexperimented with.
But then he says you've got to think of nothing. You can't think of nothing. What happens - after you bombard yourself with possibilities you blow the head. And nothing is there. Your thinking becomes nothing.
But you don't think of nothing. So this is the difference between what I call choosing the symptom, trying to imitate the symptom - in some of the Zen practices of exercising no-mind, or trying to have no-mind - as opposed to just attacking the problem and attacking the problem, until the head just blows.
Q: The idea of meditation - I've gone through TM. I firmly believe that TM was not necessary, that I could have used any mantra I wanted to use - but the process of initiation I went through was helpful.
Q: I occasionally reached a state in meditation in which there was no thought, no mantra, and even no space and time. And that also became frightening, because in terms of being a biological organism, there are certain things that we must do. And I don't want to be in a Zen monastery for the rest of my life.
R: I never spent any time in one. I don't think it affects you that much.
I studied under a Zen teacher for a while. In fact, there's a saying, that during the experience the hills cease to be hills and the valleys cease to be valleys, but after the experience the hills are once more hills and the valleys are once more valleys.
You can't stay in that non-dimension. The body can't function, the mind can't function, in a non-dimension. You return; there's no doubt about it.
Q: Ok, in that non-dimension, during that period, there was no thought.
Q: And it wasn't a dream state either. Well, I can't say that because...
R: The trouble of it is though that you didn't hang on long enough, or you wouldn't have had the thought of urgency to get back and save your hide.
Q: This drawing you've given, which to me is very useful, is a very intellectual process. You're saying we watch our actions through this intellectual yoga. How in your system of watching your actions do you deal with the emotions? Which often are the drivers, and prevent the intellect from working.
R: Well - you're kind of throwing me on the dichotomy between intellect and emotions, because - sure, I don't think we do too much of anything unless we're emotionally impelled. I think sometimes the emotions impel us in a direction, and then they impel us so for that we question our motives, and try to work diametrically opposite, or despite them. And that in turn is only emotional in origin.
Q: I'm speaking about emotions in the sense of that constantly changing pattern which comes as the sensory impulses come into the human being, and associate with patterns of desire and so forth. And therefore continually changing, and preventing the mind from working. How does your system deal with that?
R: You watch it. What I'm talking about, just simple positives and negatives, this is the whole spectrum of action. For instance, you go through such things as knowing, as I said, that what looks good to you today may be different tomorrow. And you look at, say, this cup I'm holding - in the eyeball it's upside-down, and the mind adjusts it.
And the same way with emotions. Emotions are like kaleidoscopic views. And you have to sort that, and keep sorting it, until you get a true perspective.
Q: Do you propose, at least at first, using sitting process meditating?
R: No. In fact, I can't think sitting, so I don't advise anybody else. I can think walking.
Of course, I think that people who are highly agitated possibly should train themselves to sit. I'm hypothyroid; if I sat I'd go to sleep. So I keep moving.
Q: Do you advocate this for all your students?
R: No, no. I don't advocate. I say, "In your judgment, you have to start and look things over." And I don't say anything about diet; I don't even say anything about what books to read.
I just say, though, that no matter what books you read you're going to be faced with this same thing, of the relative world, the empirical, umpire type of judgment, the understanding of an umpire mind. This will come to you. And you'll eventually evolve in the same way, into a logical opposed to an intuitional type of thinking.
Now as for how you go about that - I don't believe that any two people are the same. I knew a man one time - one of the most outstanding cases of enlightenment I encountered in my entire life (Paul Woods). And I studied under a Zen master whom I know was enlightened.
He's unknown (the Zen master). His name is Pulyan, out of Kent, Connecticut, right next to New York. But he didn't care, particularly; he wasn't selling anything, so he didn't care to be advertised too highly. While a lot of the people with the rubber stamp - they had the authority, by virtue of the rubber stamp, and they taught words. Which anybody can get out of ancient books.
But anyhow, this one fellow, his name was Paul Woods - out of Dallas, Texas, or San Antonio, Texas, one of the two - was basically a Christian. And he never was interested too much in anything except the Christian religion. Devout, believed in the Church - and they made an aviator out of him. And they sent him over to bomb Japan.
So he bombed Japan. And when he landed his plane, why, he started thinking. "What happened?" He said, "The Bible says that God observes the fall of the sparrow. If God observes the fall of the sparrow, was he watching that bomb and how many people it killed?"
So he went nuts, so to speak, in the eyes of his fellow officers, and they furloughed him back to the States. Where he continued to wrestle with these ideas. "What's going on? My thinking has been erroneous. I depended on the fundamentalist approach, and it isn't working out."
So he just belabored himself. His wife says, "You'd better shake yourself out of that and go back to work, or we're going to starve to death. He didn't. She divorced him. His kids wouldn't have anything to do with him. He went down and tried to get a job - he went to work as a salesman for some car agency, and he told me he was in there and everything was hitting the fan. Just like this fellow was talking about.
Everything went wrong. He was praying. He said the only thing he knew how to do that he learned from the church was to pray. And that was the Lord's Prayer. So he said he took the Lord's Prayer and he took it apart and he prayed it forwards, backwards, he analyzed it, he studied it, and he kept on praying. But he said it wasn't getting him anyplace, he wasn't doing anything.
So one day, he said it was an especially bad day, he was sitting at his desk and a couple of customers came in. He had sold them a car, and they were preaching at him, bitching. And he said he just right in front of them laid his head down on the desk and prayed for God to kill him. He found a new prayer.
And he just passed out. He said when he woke up, he was in the hospital. But he said he had been for about ten days on a journey, in which he saw the space/time picture. He had been in space/time. He had traveled, he had seen history.
He'd be walking down the street with you, and he could describe, if he happened to be in that place, he could describe say the battle of Gettysburg. He'd be watching it, telling you what was happening.
But he had come to the answer beyond all trouble. He knew what the answer was and he had still returned.
But this man didn't have anything except this persistent determination. With what little tools he had in hand, his Lord's Prayer, his Christian education, his sense of logic, his sense of justice, his sense of injustice. And these things battled back and forth until his head popped.
When I discovered this, I found that it isn't limited to any system. Anybody can do it. You don't have to have a teacher even. It's good to have somebody - if you don't want to catch leprosy, well, consult a leper. Or if you want to be a mountain climber, talk to a mountain climber; he might save you breaking your neck.
Or, if you're going into something and there's somebody standing beside you, and your head flips out - and he gets a hold of you and says, "Ok, I'll stick here with you until the thing's through," - maybe that helps.
But I maintain that there's no - it doesn't matter whether you eat meat, or eat grain, or stand on your head, or sit in a position. I think these are all external things that belong to an external world.
Q: How do you go about developing your intuition?
R: Yes. I think there are ways that you can perfect your intuition. This is one of the big things. Of course, there are ways of testing it. I think even ESP experimentation and that sort of thing tests your intuition. Because intuition is something more of a direct mind experience.
They say the yogis, centuries ago, used to study astronomy by not using charts or stuff, but they would look at a planet, say, until they became one with it.
If you want to be a real psychologist, there's a simple formula; you step inside the man's shoes and walk in his thoughts. And you know. You don't have many words to describe what goes on. But this is possible; you can step inside.
Lots of times you know this. All of you here have met somebody, that you bumped up to, and all at once you stopped and you looked - you never saw that man before in your life, but you knew him, and beyond a shadow of a doubt knew what to expect out of him.
This is intuition. Ok. So - if that guy comes along later and borrows five hundred dollars from you, and doesn't come back - you know you were wrong. So that's the test.
Q: Would it be safe to make the assumption that there's a circle or blob in every one of us that's all of the same stuff?
R: I do.
[Break in tape]
(Rose)...making capital and small "s". Of course, most of us begin by thinking that the self is the capital-S self. But after we see it from an anterior viewpoint, we discover that we were misjudging, and it was a small-s self. Or a mundane self, or an ego, or one of these I's.
So then immediately we are displaced from that small-s self to a degree, toward a capital-S Self. And when you reach the maximum, capital-S self, you are one with.
Q: Is there sort of an unformed blob there that is acted upon, or does it act, or is it beyond action...?
R: I know what you're getting at, and I don't...maybe if I knew I wouldn't even tell you. Because I think it's impossible that everybody act as though they can't act. And if you thought that it would happen whether you acted or not, nobody would act. I'm a believer that you have to believe that you can act.
Q: As this other gentleman was saying, from a certain perspective most of the things we do are, after reaching that point, really kind of absurd...
R: Oh, yeah. That's the process of life.
Q: For instance, if you're dying, or if you come very close to death, from the perspective of your dying, everything else is sort of trivial.
R: That's right. Some hate to come back. As I said, there's a lot of stuff written now that wasn't written before. Like Raymond Moody's books (Life After Life). Elisabeth Kubler-Ross (On Death and Dying) also writes on the death experiences. In very few of these cases is there scratching the wallpaper off the wall. Very seldom. They generally say, "Oh, well - Ok."
I remember one case back home. An old man, a doctor, about eighty years of age was dying. And naturally everybody in the hospital knew him. And they tried to revive him, they threw him down on the floor and pounded his chest. And he came back - and proceeded to curse them all out.
Q: What can you say about death in relation to the ego?
R: Well, this is really what death is. Most of our comprehension of death is the death of the ego. So if all of the egos collapse, then we go through what we really believe is a physical death.
This is what happens at death. You have the ego, say, of importance. That you're important enough to live forever or something. Or maybe you hope; hope is a kind of an ego too.
But when a person is told by the doctor, "You have two or three hours to live," he realizes that in a short while, what he conceived of as being him - unless he's had an experience of something of a philosophic type - his concept, if it's somatic, will be that his totality is going to be decayed, just within a very short period of time. He may die within an hour and be nothing but a decayed body.
So in the process - he gives up. He knows better. And I maintain that quite a few people, possibly, go through before they die a realization that results from dropping all of those egos. And then they know - they know the answer. Now if they die, of course, they can't tell you. But some come back.
Now this is this process. The process of dropping egos is death. We die a little, as Saint Paul said I think - he died a little every day. Because he was getting rid of his egos every day.
Q: You have to encounter risk to the ego, and disruptions and displacements?
R: Yes. There's a little thing that you have to watch. You can drop your vanity - or it will be just like me, the hair falls out and you're not quite as vain. So that's no problem; some of the vanity leaves.
Then you have an intellectual vanity, an intellectual ego. That can leave.
But you have to hang onto the vanity of the importance of yourself as a living creature. Most people think, "Oh, those other people out there, those poor devils, aren't as important as I am. I'm really important." Almost everybody has that. And he has to maintain that, that I call pride, because if he doesn't he's liable to let his body organism deteriorate.
You have to have that basic pride. You can't dump all your egos.
So when a guy goes through this experience of Sahaja Samadhi it's a synthetic thing, in which he really goes through it, loses his body pride, loses his importance in relation to the cosmos: "In the next few minutes I may be zero, obliviated for ever." And when he does that he drops all of his ego and boom, the light goes on.
Now - I'm telling you something I can't prove. I'm just telling you an experience.
So then when he comes back, if he wants to live, he better get his ego back and start scrubbing his teeth. And watching the diseases he catches, and be proud of his appearance and his stamina and everything - or he's going to rot while he's on his feet.
Q: From my limited experience and from reading Moody's books and other accounts, it seems that you do bring back something - you may see the hills and the valleys as they were, but you relate to them in a different way.
R: Right, right.
Q: So there is some goal, something you want to do, some kind of a contribution, some way of operating from a higher place...
R: Well - for instance, I don't know how much of a contribution I make. I often wonder. Sometimes I think it's all ego. But I do feel this, that I don't look at things the same. I don't see things in the same importance. The death of my relatives, for instance. I don't say now, "Oh, this is terrible." Because the previous conception was they were gone forever. Now I say they might be a hell of a sight better off. It's over. See what I mean? And there's no extinction.
Another thing is the idea of competition. I can't get competitive. I can't see the sense in what's important, whether you have three apples and I've only got two. This to me becomes ridiculous.
The same thing in relation to the appetites. Some of these boys have known me for several years, and they joke about the way I eat; I'm not conscious of what I eat. I could care less what I eat. I just hope they've taken the feathers off it before it gets to me, that's all. And the same way with sex; I can't get identified, I can't get steamed up over something else which I know is a body, that's all, with a hell of a lot of problems.
So sure, I'm not saying I didn't. I got married and raised a family after this happened. But - it wasn't anything romantic for my wife, I'm afraid.
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John Kent: When you're watching all of these relative egos, and slowly getting rid of the ones that you see are not very real, or misleading and so on - do you ever get to something that might be called a genuine relative self?
R: Yeah, you've got it right now. Everybody's got a genuine relative self.
Q: What I mean - that you get rid of falseness, but there's something like a real ego, before you get rid of the real one. Or even does that last one fall too, then?
R: Well, no, I don't see - they're only real in relation to their function. They're all real.
Q: Well, like the Christian notion that there's an individual soul, that you've been molded...
R: The thing is - I'm convinced that I am an individual soul, and I'm convinced that I am not in any ways individual, from the total absolute essence. Now that's what you find out. I am nothing. And yet I am everything.
Q: There's nothing like individuality, where one soul is different?
R: Oh yes, it's like a drop of water, in the ocean, trying to break loose and vote. He might be there, and he's conscious, but he's one - the ocean is one big drop. This is the paradox. You have to be prepared in philosophy for the paradox. And not that we want to, or want to throw one in there every time, no. But this is what you discover.
When you get there, too, possibly, you might have more separateness than what you feel. You'll be separate. But you'll be one, because you're still observing. The drop of water is still observing the surrounding ocean. But it's boundaries might not be the same.
Q: I know you don't want to push any system of religion, and you just want to be effective - so do you have any advice, or any catalysts...?
R: Well, I wouldn't say that I don't do anything, because I did write a book, and that's provocative. I like to shake people' s heads up and say, "Hey, start thinking." (I don't say that everything in there is really kosher, that you need to have it.)
By the same token I've dedicated the rest of my life to whatever I could do to help people. I have a tract of ground back home, and I turned it over to some people to use as an ashram, so that they'd have a place to come and think.
Because it's very difficult to think, and it's good if you live in town to at least once a year shake your head loose from the squirrel cage. You can't stop your thoughts and start new ones. You have to get completely away from the job. So I felt that this was necessary.
I felt it was necessary when I was younger - and I didn't have it. So when I got some land I turned a section of it over for that use. So that people could. And I think that it's important.
I think there's a number of steps, sure. I don't say that there isn't advice. For instance, I believe the first thing that you have to do is to establish a priority on what you want in life. Regardless - if it's a million dollars, go out whole hog for it. And if it's a spiritual thing - I use the word spiritual, but you can redefine that to suit yourself, you can be philosophical if you wish to call it that.
But don't do it halfway. Because you're only going to get halfway. And halfway to eternity is nowhere. You can go halfway to a million and get five hundred thousand, but halfway to eternity is nowhere. That's still ignorance. Because you know nothing until you know everything.
That's what I meant about definition. I said, "Define yourself," and immediately the man's right; he says, "You can't." That's right; but you keep belaboring with it. But then once you find anything you know everything. Once you really define it then you know everything.
But to do that requires a relative setting. Possibly to have somebody irritate you a bit now and then. And if a lecture or a book or a little ashram someplace where people peck at you and ask you questions - if that helps, Ok, that's good.
But I don't interfere; I don't try to say, "You are now a thirty-second degree so-and-so." No. I don't gauge. Because - I'll tell you something else: I don't believe I'm doing anything. I believe it would be facetious if I were to try to take over somebody's life.
Any experience - my experience was spontaneous. If you could predict, if you could take a system by which you would reach enlightenment step by step, and write it down in a book, it would not be enlightenment. Because of the risk that you would have to take into account that this would be created by the mind, under conditions. Predicted conditions.
To be scientific in esoteric matters you have to divert diametrically opposite to scientific prediction and result. Prediction and result are the basis of science. And a spiritual experience has to be unpredicted. Spontaneous.
Because if you go about it in such a way that you say, "Now I'm getting two degrees hotter, three degrees closer, now such and such will occur, and then tomorrow I'll have so many degrees of enlightenment..." Nonsense. You'll be kidding yourself. It has to pop on you like a lightening bolt.
Ok - anybody that tries to take a systematic approach to a lightening bolt - is going to be lying to you, I think. Or maybe killing your time for you.
But I do believe you can do certain mundane things. Collective economy - you can go in there and cook on the same stove and chop firewood together, and protect yourselves by your numbers, so that people will let you think a little while. You get a thirty-day vacation - Ok, go think. That gives you at least a new perspective. You're not going to be thinking the same treadmill thoughts 365 days out of the year.
And that's the reason there's a group here in Los Angeles. That some fellows here decided that they would meet, once a week or so, just to say, "Hey, what are you thinking? Are you still on the treadmill? Get off the treadmill."
Q: What is your way of reaching the mind of a spiritual seeker who comes to you?
R: Mostly attack. I ask people what they believe. And you'd be surprised. A lot of them I don't say anything to, because - if they're creating themselves a heaven out of faith and belief and fear, you leave them alone. You can only help people who have ears.
Only people can hear who have ears. Meaning, I might talk to you and you might hear me. You may talk to somebody else and they may hear you. But I talk to that person and they won't hear me. It's a strange situation there. You waste your time if you reach what I call too far down on the ladder.
I look upon this student-teacher business as a ladder. We are restricted to the understanding of three rungs on the ladder. We can see the man who teaches us, and vaguely maybe understand him. The man on the rung below - we can see him, he can see us, and we can help him. And this is the law; we have to help him. We're supposed to.
We're supposed to learn something from somebody else. You can't learn too much from people on your own rung. You have to work with those on your own rung; that's the relationship there. The brotherhood - on your own rung.
Now if you look up too far, if you reach up too far, you won't understand that man. This is where the language comes in and the ears. You'll write him off as being crazy. You'll reject his theories or whatever. And that's a safety valve; you're not ready, you don't have the capacity. If you reach down two rungs or more to help somebody - crucifixion is the result. That's what happened to Christ. He reached down too many rungs. They pulled him down by the hair of the head. You only can talk to those who have an understanding.
Q. Excuse me, I have to leave. I enjoyed coming. ?It was definitely worth my while, but I do have another appointment.
Q. We have refreshments over here, and keep in touch if you’re interested.
bm4 ends at 12:39
footnotes, only one
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