|Recorded date||April 2, 1992|
|Location||NC State at Duquesne|
|No. tapes||2 cassettes|
|Other recorders audible?||No|
|No. of MP3 files||5 files including file #0 - introduction: 14 min; 27 min; 31 min; 40 min; 20 min|
|Total time||133 minutes including intro|
|Published in what book?|
|Published on which website?|
|Audio quality||“White cover” tapes. Left channel only. Quality is good but volume level of questions is very low. Will need headphones. Maybe tracks can be normalized.
End of file 3 and start of file 4 will need work to recover.
|Identifiable voices||Very good intro by Mike Casari|
Article on savant idiots:
A week earlier was 1992-0326-Truth-Lies-Ultimate-Reality-Pitt
Both on a Thursday.
The content is different.
Newspaper article for this lecture: "Zen Philosopher to Speak April 2" in Duquesne Duke March 26, 1992.
14 minute intro by M. Casari (very good)
I think he said it all. We might as well go home. [A reference to introduction by Mike Casari, placed at end – page xx.]
I don’t have much to say tonight; what I’ll try to do is provoke some thinking. And I’ll explain a little bit about Zen. Because as far as this thing itself is concerned, I knew several [?] Zen masters. I studied with one for awhile, mainly to learn transmission. Because I had had an experience but didn’t know how to transmit it. So I contacted a fellow by the name of Pulyan; he worked out of new York City, but lived in Connecticut. , I didn’t stay very long; as soon as I saw how it was done I left.
But I’m going to read some notes that I have here. Mike has covered a tremendous lot, and I don’t want to repeat, but there is a message here, and it’s a little different than you find in other theological directions or religions. And yet in another sense it’s no different.
I don’t know how many of you have heard this, but this is the basis of Zen, the identification of Zen, real Zen 1. A special transmission outside the scriptures. 2. No dependence on words or letters. 3. Directly pointing to the essence of man and mind. 4. Seeing one’s own nature and attaining enlightenment.
- Now we have here a statement, a special transmission outside the scriptures. You take these four directions, given maybe two thousand years ago. They fit into almost any religion. You find that almost any religion has a scripture.
There is writing [are writings] about Buddhism, but not too much writing about method. And the Zen system does not teach, it asks questions. It doesn’t talk for hours on how you save your soul or something like that.
So almost every major religion has scriptures, and they occupy their minds with it. It’s the “holy words”, the repetition of holy words. And this statement her comes own from the – I don’t think that one man set these four statements together and then other people believed him. I think it was more or less a thing that they all, by virtue of the way they arrived at it, through their transmission, they realized that you had to go directly to stuff. You couldn’t study for years and get a degree in it, you had to become it, by some method.
So [but] we are highly dependent on the scriptures. And I know that there are millions of people who think that’s all you have to do – is read the word. The Mohammedan faith is the same; the Christian faith. I think most of them you’ll see appearing on the face of the earth have tthat same quality.
Common sense will tell you that anything written in scriptur[al] fashion, meaning it’s a book, can be twisted to suit someone who’s playing games with the people’s mind or to make a business out of it.
No dependence on words or letters: Where does that leave you? There has to be some instruction somewhere; these four lines you might say are the total instruction in Zen; but still, there’s no dependence on words or letters.
Directly pointing to the essence of mind: How do you point when you can’t see? But yet that line was put there; that’s been read down through the ages. That we’re not going through this thing logically, we’re searching for a better and better definition of the essence of man, or the essence of his mind – it may be the mind and it may not be.
.And the last one, seeing one’s true nature, and attaining enlightenment: Seeing one’s true nature is like a self-directed psychological system, in which you look in the past – I have a little book back there on meditation – the high point of the book, otr the message in it is, don’t look at your trouble today; you’re not going to be fair to it, you’re going to be prejudiced, you’re going to lie to yourself about why you’re angry.
Go back ten years, and you’ll see your true nature [then?] If you’re young it will be [yourself] as a child. If you’re sixty years old it may be when you’re fifty. And I’d like to mention a little item, with respect to that, because you don’t learn by reading in books, you have to learn by having it happen to you.
When I was in grade school, I’d say I was five years old, or six, seven, along in there, there was a boy in the class who was deformed, and he was the ugliest creature I ever saw in my life, and I would smile when I saw him, I would want to laugh. I just smiled. And one day I smiled and he punched me in the nose. I didn’t say a word to him, didn’t call him any names, but he punched me in the nose.
And he followed up on it – I realized I couldn’t fight him; he was all muscle, for a child he was very capable. So I thought, I’m not going to be able to fight this guy with my fists, but some day I’ll kill him. That I’ll just keep it in my head that I’ll kill him, I’m not going to allow anybody to push me around.
I never got the opportunity to kill him, naturally, and he grew up; I think he died when he was about thirty. I think he was badly crippled up.
But I was sitting out on my farm – it’s been ten or twenty years ago – and I happened to think about him. And I thought that [about] this crude body that he had, this odd looking body, and I thought to myself, “I wonder what I would have felt like if I had had that body. I wonder whether I could have laughed and joked, of the other kids [ sentence] took their jibes.” And it dawned on me of course that at the age of six or seven I had been a fathead.
And the kind of illumination that came over me was not one of shame, it was one of happiness, that I was able to see myself for the first time, and going back into the ... so you watch then, look through your life and see how many times you’ve laughed at the wrong fellow, see, somebody who couldn’t help themselves, probably.
But we have to start with this. The books are no good – that’s the reason he says not to pay any attention to words or letters. We have to start with ourself, and this is the Zen technique. And this is the Zen way. [But] there’s a lot of stuff that goes on in a Zen monastery that leads to – to give you an example: No dependence on words or letters – so the Zen master gives his student a “letter” to solve, a sentence to solve, and he works with it for years and years and comres up with a – maybe he walks up to his teacher one day and says, ‘I don’t think there is any meaning to that.” And the teacher might say, “You’ve got the point. That’s what I was trying to put accros to you.”
We’ve got the vanity we can solve everything just by concentrating on it. Zen is not something that you concentrate. [?] Zen is not necessarily meditation. But it is a relentless struggle to know the function of the human mind and to find out some reason [why] we’re here, where’d we come from.
Now we take then the comparison of Zen to Christian advice, different types of advise [pronounced “z”] The Christian system seems to think we are rational people, able to commit crimes, do things, maybe rise to great heights and discover a new chemical, or win a bettle by virtue of our thinking processes.
And Zen says, “Don’t pay any attention to anything rational. There’s nothing rational, nothing that we see. There’s no sense to it because there’s no answer to it. No one here knows where they came from or where they’re going and when.” So where is the logic? If we had any logic at all, or any ability to think, we should spend some time at least trying to – if we can’t figure out where we came from, delay as long as possible trying to find out where you’re going. Because if you die before that, you’ll not have any assurance at all.
Most religions have a what I call a merit plus demerit system; cookies or good actions, hells for the bad actions. And Zen has none of this. And in the final analysis, when you start thinking – nothing is bad. Nothing is bad. It’s basically things that – there are some rocks that if you stumble over them will injure your toe or something. There are other rocks that are flat and won’t bother you. And this is the same way with people, and this is the same way with incidents.
But the thing is, most religions felt, number one, that if you were good you should be rewarded and if you were bad you should have to do a penance. And this is carried over into our judicial system as well: if you’re a reformed criminal they might make a policeman out of you, where your violence will do some good. Or at least the policeman might want to get into that trade anyhow, because it’s down his line.
But we have this demerit which is prison or purgatory or hell. And I’m curious about, among the theologians, how many of them have studied the origin of the use of the word “hell” for instance in some of our literature. Some people believe of course that hell is right here. If it’s going to be any worse than this, there’s no use moving on.
But it implies that the physical body is doing something wrong, so you have to have a hell to burn the physical body – not only burn it up but burn it for eternity, which is an amazing thing. And of course you have the merit system, which is a haven for hypocrites and possibly politicians that you can’t [?] trust. They get the merits because they’re good boys and they’ve never been caught.
Zen encourages one to find reality by transcending all things physical, especially thoughts of physical reward. No matter what type of life you lead, you have no assurance that there’s going to be somebody waiting with the checkbook or with a little bit of gold, or sainthood – making you a saint.
Now let’s get over to Zen. Where would a person start, with Zen? The inclination of course is to start with a teacher. If he’s going to do that he [the student] should start with an attempt to answer questions. The whole system of Zen is basically questioning yourself, questioning your intelligence. The teacher cooks up little things that will help you see an angle that you probably wouldn’t see if you were just trying to sit and meditate.
For the seeker, all questions are out of vanity. The question, that a person who’s looking for the truth, where he throws questions, half of the questions will be to please himself. Meaning, “Mr. Rose, don’t you agree with me that ... we are getting tramped on? What would you say about that, Mr. Rose? Can you stop these poor people from getting tramped on?” In other words, they’re not concerned with finding who they are.
It doesn’t matter who you are – what your race, what your IQ is – I don’t know whether the IQ would help or not. you get some surprises sometimes out of the savant idiots, that some of the people who aren’t credited with intelligence are much further ahead than those who have worn themselves to a frazzle getting degrees.
The student does not wish to put in the necessary time to find out for himself; he wants it handed to him. He wants to say, “Hey, give me enlightenment, and I’ll give you so much money.” Or, “I’ve got a mental syndrome; can you get me off of it? Can you get me off of this habit?” He doesn’t think there’s a very simple cure for it – and that is, resist. It’s an enemy. The habit’s an enemy, resist. Don’t pay anybody. Don’t pay a psychiatrist to get you off of a habit; you can do it yourself.
And – this is the same thing you have when your ignorance [? - sentence] is no longer tolerated. When you can no longer tolerate your ignorance, you don’t go study, you look at yourself. You look continually at yourself, your thoughts, your ability to think, the possibilities of life, the possibility maybe of eternal oblivion. And this is important; eternal oblivion is a factor just as true as that you might live again.
And this – by being honest with yourself in all things – that’s basically what Zen is. So the teacher may create a koan for someone that [who?] is doing nothing, in the compound of wherever they are. [and as I said earlier] And after maybe a year of wrestling with that he’ll come back and say, “I can’t find any meaning to that.” And the Zen teacher will say something to the effect that, ‘Now you’ve found the truth. A little truth, but you’re getting there now; you’re not believing everything you hear.” The koan didn’t mean anything; it doesn’t mean anything.
So if you have no teacher – let’s put it this way – supposing you have no teacher and you want to find the truth, find the same thing – I didn’t have teacher, from the beginning; I had a lot of things happen to me, but I didn’t have a man who, I didn’t live in a monastery or anything like that.
You can discover reality – and basically, enlightenment is nothing more than reality. And we’re always talking about reality, and everybody, there are books and books written on the psychological realities, and most of them are nonsense. They’re just a twist on different concepts; you twist the concept a little, sign your name to it, and you’re famous.
But you have to discover that, first of all, this [world] is not a reality in itself. There must be something beyond. And if you even watch the [different] life forms, protoplasm, things like neurotransmitters, and then you get the idea that this is an evolutionary thing – so you hear that, this planet’s evolved, and all these creatures have evolved – you find a complexity and yet a consistency; there’s a consistent complexity that, you can’t conceive that that they happened in six, seven, or fifty thousand years. For instance, how is a neurotransmitter created by evolution?
How did the photons get into existence? Photons are supposed to be very intelligent little particles. You can’t see them with the naked eye, but that what are these lights. And yet they come up with the conclusion that they have an intelligence of their own.
So intelligence is not found in flesh alone. And we have a conceit that only people with flesh will go to heaven, after the flesh rots.
So what it is – there are all sorts of fields; I’m not trying to give you the idea that you’ve got to study physics or anything of that sort; I’m just saying there are all sorts of fields that will tell you things when you start to say, “Let’s get to the bottom of this.” Or, “Why am I here?” And if that’s the guide, or the goad, okay. But “Why am I here?” cannot be used for an argument either. You can’t argue with yourself and say, “Why am I here?” [?] What happens is that you pound your head against the problem until the head stops working. When the head stops working, then nothingness and everythingness more or less is comprehensible to you simultaneously.
How would a person find his essence? Now we presume that a person has an essence; we don’t know that. So this is a big drive a loit of us have, is to find that essence, find the trigger that maybe brings a man into birth, sticks with him until he dies, and then perhaps his body is dropped away and he goes someplace on some adventure. These are the possibilities.
But what goes away? We want to know what survives. And all of our knowledge today is sensory; everything we know we trace it back through the senses, and the senses are dead. So how do we logically see beyond, the body, the human has a human body. His senses are gone.
So what you have left, if it ever returns, is an essence. And oddly enough, possibly, when the essence does return there will be some memory with it. Some memory. but if you’re – for instance, I’m seventy-five years old. And some of my memories – I forget names, for instance. Not that they mean that much, but they mean more than events; I’d like to remember people’s names. I remember a few of them, but I’ve also forgotten quite a few of them. Now if your memory fails you before you die, what are you going to remember afterwards?
How do we find our essence? Are we just a series of voices and egos and appetites? Are we the observer of a person studying a person? Or the essence that is limited to our body?
I’m not saying we are limited to the body. I’m just asking if we are. Or are we just studying ourselves as a person? [?]
Is the real consciousness of man limited to his body? Can he be conscious elsewhere?
You hear once in a while of telepathic events, where someone had communicated, maybe didn’t know he is communicating, with somebody maybe a thousand miles away. And he’ll call the fellow on the phone the next day and say, “Geez, I had a bad dream about you,” and the other guy will say, Hey, I could have sworn you were in my room.”
These are little bits of evidence that we can never answer properly. And I’ll tell you one in history that I read and never forgot, and that was Apollonius of Tyana. He was standing on a street corner in Athens, many years ago, and all at once he stopped talking and said [sentence, still talking] “Hit him again! Kill him!.” And the fellow with him said, “What are you talking about?” and he said, “They just killed the emperor; they stabbed him to death.” Well it took days or weeks to walk, to go from where they were to the scene of the assassination, but it was borne out that he actually witnessed the murder of the emperor.
So this gives us a different idea of the possibility for our consciousness, our so-called consciousness. And in spite of a good bit of space, so it’s not limited to what you see with your eyeball.
I can’t say that we should try to depend on something like that, because if we tried to guess at it, I think we’d be wrong the biggest part of the time.
Are we ...
[side 1 ends at 26:39 (intro is in separate file #0]
... is limited to our body. Now I wrote a little book, also a small book, out there, called The Psychology of the Observer. And in it is the way by which you can find illumination. And it’s by observing yourself, by watching yourself, and tracing them [your thoughts] back, and say – it goes back to where you are watching a previous thought – then analyze why you were thinking the thought, what was behind the thought, and you go on down back until you finally break through, and you realize that you are no longer the subject. You’re no longer the body that you’ve been studying, and the habits. There’s something that realizes that what you are, and never will be any more than that, and that’s the observer. And that’s the wrap-up of the title of the word, he topic on [of] the book.
01:08 Now here’s another question:
Is the real consciousness of a man limited to his body?
What are the boundaries of the self?
Can a person see his self?
What are the limits ?? of an individual who is introspective in order to look at himself? [sentence]
What are the limits? How far can we go? I can give you an idea. You can see what’s upon the mountain after you die, before you die. When I say the mountain I’m speaking poetically. It just happens that when I went across, I was really trying to get to the Cascade Mountains, that was in Seattle.
01:53 start Monday
I had a pain that I thought was fatal; I didn’t think I would survive it, in my head, I thought it was a stroke. Incidentally, I was only thirty years old, but I thought it was a stroke. But I thought – I went out the window when the pain got so severe. I was conscious of looking out the window – it was closed incidentally – and I went through the glass, and looked up at the snow-capped mountains, and I thought, “Boy, that’s where I want to go,” and I did.
But when I got there, there was no snow. But I was on a high spot, a tremendous high spot. But the thing was that I noticed, in hindsight, long afterwards – I remembered at that point earth; I remembered my people, I remembered the place, Seattle, the town, [as well as] my home town. And I got rather concerned about it, and I thought, “I wonder if I can see anything here besides this mountain. I wonder if there are other people I can see.” And of course, people immediately appeared.
Now, what I’m saying is, that regardless of what was up there, [it] had a memory. How do we explain that? And I’m not – I know this happens to a lot of people; we’ve got a tremendous number of people on the operating table who absolutely are pronounced dead and come back. And they’ll tell stories that – I don’t think anybody takes them seriously. Because they’re – you know, we’re saying, “He’s out of his head, because he was sick.”
But what I’m trying to get across is that – we can rest assured that possibly [?] memory survives death. The memory of ourself survives death, and that means that the observer – us – has memory and survives. The body isn’t there; [but] the observer is there.
And of course when I cam back I could also remember the details of what I had seen when I was under the influence of [or] the spell of the experience. So the memory went both ways.
So where’s the memory? This is one of the complaints I have with our scientists; they talk so glibly of the faculties of the human being, and maybe know so little about them.
We have two or three different types of memories. We’ve got cellular – well, I shouldn’t say – DNA memory. We’ve got what we presume is the brain memory, the things that are making impressions, some incoming things that are making little indentations on some nerve in the brain.
There’s another form of memory too, besides the DNA – well, actually the visual memory that we have of everything – we don’t know where, we haven’t put our finger on where we’re keeping it; it seems like a storehouse, [but] we don’t know where it’s being kept.
There’s another faculty in the body – and – I didn’t make a note of it. [see p. of o.]
Can a doctor see a disease, or does he only see the symptoms of the disease? Can a psychologist see sanity? Insanity? Or the physical roots of all aberrations, desires, hopes or frustrations? Does the layman ever see the real psychologist, the real priest, or the real
We’re actors, they say; actors on the stage.
What is a real psychologist?
Can a person who is mentally distressed or ignorant identify another person’s incompleteness?
In other words, we’ve got a nut studying a nut. Perhaps, who knows? But this is a possibility, when you get to thinking these things out.
Could an ignorant person cure people if he has no knowledge of all [?] possible mental procedures that are needed for the cure of the psyche and for the undefined mind?
Let’s find where this mind is before we brag about curing it. I say that for all of our wisdom we do not know what a thought is and we do not know the capacity of the mind or where the mind is.
[possible move this] I’ve got a – in this business of Zen there’s a – I told you before there’s a thing called a koan. Now, I don’t say that the – I have a few koans for you and I’m not going to say that they’’re going to bring you any enlightenment. But I want to see whether they bring any desire for an answer. then we can discuss these later. These are considered koans; some of them are not too complicated
[the following is the “traditional” list of questions]
What do you know for sure?
Does a man own a house or does the house own him?
Does a man have power, or is he overpowered?
Talk to any married man and see if he’s overpowered.
Is man a predator or a victim, or both?
Does a person enjoy or is he consumed?
Does a man really reason, or is he so programmed?
These little tricks – the mind is going around, contemplating this, dreaming of that, and he thinks, “Oh, boy, I’m doing this.” Maybe he’s programmed. Maybe he has no alternative.
Can a man learn that which he really wishes to, by himself alone?
Can a man become?
How shall he know what he should become?
A lot of people talk about becoming. How do you know what you’re going to become? I’m talking about a spiritual level, not a level, or, a, say, a psychological level. [?]
Why build ant hills before knowing what an ant is?
Why do we build conceptual towers of Babel about human thinking before we know what thought is?
There are all sorts of efforts, much running to and fro over the face of this plane, by people who pretend to know what thought is. But no one has defined thought yet.
How could we dare to define thought before knowing the source and cause of all thought, or the essence of thought?
How does it break down in a chemical vial, in analysis. Can we dare to define thought before knowing the source and cause?
When we describe bouncing do we describe the striking object or that which is struck?
Now I use this because – in other words, you throw a rubber ball against a wall, and you say the ball bounced away. But we forget all about the wall. The wall also bounces. So I’m using tthat just to indicate that when we try to name a category that we’re thinking, and that [?] we do not have full knowledge of the terms. [sentence] We do not have full knowledge of how to think; how to think properly.
Can you start thinking?
[Can you stop thinking?]
For instance, can I tell you right now, for everybody just for ten seconds to stop [?] thinking? Can you do it? Try it. Nobody can stop thinking for ten seconds, unless he wants to hit himself in the head or drop a pill that’s going to knock him out – that will stop thinking. But I’m talking about with [from] your own volition. We think that we’re thinking. We’re only [?] thinking because we’re not unconscious.
Is thought something perceived or something projected [on us]?
Meaning all thoughts; and we get into this thing of telepathy. Regardless, it seems like we’re trying to define every little thing. Descartes was supposed to have said, “I think, therefore I am.” But in the Zen interpretation of that, he thinks and consequently he doesn’t exist. He’s nothing. In other words he is not, because he hasn’t proven it, that’s what I mean. He thinks, but that doesn’t mean he proved his existence.
Is thought a sort of ...
I’m trying to get down now to the idea of what is this? Is it something electrical that goes through the body. Is this something that perhaps is limited clear to the brain?
Is thought a sort of somatic emanation?
Is this something that glows from the brain when it gets stirred up with the blood circulation?
Do we think, or is everything we think about caused?
That we have no choice. That let’s say that 99 44/100 percent of the stuff we think about, we didn’t ask to think about; it came upon us. As soon as you wake up in the morning. You don’t choose your thoughts.
Sometimes it helps to have something on your mind the night before; you might remember it then. But that doesn’t mean that we’re doing the thinking. When it happens then is [?] one of our business endeavors is endangered or something like that so we’re forced to think. We can’t get it out of our head; it might keep us awake all night. But that doesn’t mean that we’re doing the thinking consciously. We’re just reacting.
Is so-called negative thinking [criticism of things people do] negative to man or negative to nature?
In other words, you take the things we described as negative thiking – nine chances out of ten you’re thinking about something that maybe if you carried it out, the neighbor wouldn’t like it.
Does the brain generate thought like a radio generates a message coming from its speaker?
Is thought limited to the brain?
Where is this thing we’re so quick to identify?
When the tree bends over ...
Now here’s where this – is the koan related to this ...
When a tree bends over, does it create wind by waving its branches?
What are you doing for certain, and what is done to you? That’s the meaning. To all appearances, it looks like the trees are whipping up a wind. And that’s the same with our thought; that we think we’re doing it. But it’s always done to us. At least it originated in something coming to us
What is telepathy?
Does thought travel through the head?
Does only the head think?
What is this vehicle for thought-travel?
I’ve belabored myself with this for a long time. You get these instances where two people think of the same thing. I was driving one time with my wife, and we knew some people in the town we were approaching. And I thought to myself, “It would be nice if we stopped at the Jones’ house.” And my wife says, [?] “I was just going to say that.” [Who spoke it?] Now that is maybe a coincidence; not too important of a coincidence, because both of us knew the party. But why did both of us think of it at the same time? That possibly – there is a possibility that there is a little telepathy there.
Well, you get a lot of this. For instance, Mike was talking about this woman who had the hypothyroidism. And I thought, when I saw that mark on the neck I thought, “This can’t be real. I’m not going to say anything.” [?] And so I asked her. I said, “Do you have a hyperthyroid condition?” And she said, “Yes, how did you know that?”
But this was something I saw – there was no paper? there but I just saw it when I was going around with a piece of paper. Well, she was iin fairly bad shape from it. She was having trouble [?] with the doctors and that sort of thing.
There was a boy sitting next to her. And she spoke to him; she said, “How does he do that?” And of course he didn’t answer. And I happened to look over to him, and I said, “Yours [condition] is much worse.” I didn’t know what it was but I knew that his life was threatened. He just nodded his head when I said that. A fellow came up to me later and said, “Do you know what’s wrong with him? He’s got multiple sclerosis. There’s not much hope for him.”
So where do these thoughts come from? This is the benefit of introspection; it’s good to try to find where this stuff comes from. I don’t know, possibly from the head, the hypothyroidism, maybe she was thinking about it. But why would I think about it? I don’t have the answer for it. And I do a lot of this public guessing and I’m just amazed every time it happens, because the mechanisms of it I’m not familiar with. Like Mike says, I’ve even taken a few pains from people, and was amazed as much as they were..
Does the body manufacture thoughts?
Do we have a generator in there that manufactures electricity, and the thoughts ride the wave of the electricity? It has to come from somewhere. I think that it’s tremendously important that we realize that we have never really defined thought, in order to have a better understanding of it.
Do chemicals such as serotonin and other neurotransmitters create thought?
Or do they merely facilitate the penetration into our consciousness, things of ??? sensory data?
Where will the answer to this question lead us? To multidimensional contacts? Multidimensional gimmicks all through the body?
How many full hours do we spend analyzing our thought process?
I’m giving you – this sounds like plain English, a person talking to himself about things you’d like to hear, but basically this is the path that answers the koan. This is the relentless pounding on, “Hey, here I am, I don’t know myself, let’s start analyzing what’s visible.” The thoughts aren’t visible, but the pictures the thoughts leave behind are visible, in our mind, so to speak. We know we’re thinking. So this is through which you attack. [sentence] “What happens down the road?” Everything breaks. Everything breaks. And, you know, about everything. [?]
But it’s not verbalizable, it’s not something you write about. I/f you write something about it you’ll be off to the left or off to the right. Or [?] be poetic – a lot of it’s poetic, you know. If you’re happy it’s poetic, and if there’s been a lot of suffering connected with it, it will be more of a complaint, perhaps.
I’m also trying to point out the idea that, ?? looking at the body. Some people want to believe that, this is quite a doctrine being put out by what I consider inept people who don’t have the answer. And of course, very few people do have the answer – but who are taking a simplified method, saying that there’s nothing but the body, there’s absolutely nothing but the body.
This allows us to do a lot of things we wouldn’t have wanted to do before; just relax and do whatever the body wants to do. Now of course it’s also an excuse for people who pass laws to say, “We’re not going to kill you; we’re going to kill your body, because that’s the one that did the damage.” Because if we’re nothing but a body, we’re sure responsible for – that body ?? responsible, more so than if we were an ignorant person struggling in ignorance, committing a few errors now and then, but not really to blame for them. It may go clear back to whoever created the first man; that person might be to blame for it. Where did the first man hatch out?
Is man only a blob of protoplasm which is programmed to react according to a schedule, or is he a free agent?
When we hear all these things and get to thinking about it – I don’t like ?? don’t answer the question, but I think it’s worth thinking about it, this business that we’re a free agent. It’s [there’s] also the thing to think we’re something besides a blob – or study to see if we are [might be] something other than a blob.
Can we observe our thoughts?
This is the big thing; this is the necessary one. If you’re going to know yourself, you have to know your thoughts. That’s part of you. Outside of – if you didn’t have thoughts you’d be like a piece of dead meat. If you didn’t have thoughts you couldn’t talk, you couldn’t express yourself.
Who programmed us?
Where were we programmed?
Who stimulated? us?
What is thought? Again, can we observe them? [?]
If we observe our thoughts, are we not thinking about thinking?
This is very important too. We must think about thinking. And this is something you cant bypass. If there’s evidence that there’s thinking, so you got to look at the, to study thinking about thinking.
Is such a thinker someone who dreams of yesterday, thinking that he watches a dreamer?
Or is he a detached watcher of past and present thoughts, who is awake and aware of the mechanical man?
What are we, an animated body in a suppressed, stagnated soul?
Do we have a mind? Are we mind-stuff? Or are we a programmed body and mind?
Do we actually know that which we are doing?
If so, why do we repeatedly regret things that we do?
Does a metazoan, insect, animal or man know why it reproduces?
He might give you a lot of answers, but does he really know why? He knows why he likes to reproduce.
Does a person seduce another, or are both seduced?
They never stop to think about this; that there is possibly something not quite tangible that puts thoughts in people’s heads.
What do we do on this earth besides fertilize?
Are you a hero or a victim?
Are you loved or are you consumed?
Do you have possessions, or are you possessed by them?
What is more evidential and apparent to you, your divinity or your animal appearance?
If we wish to plan our lives, do we not need to consider while planning that it may [already] be all planned and we have no choice?
How do we plan around that possibility?
I’ll try to answer that later on. That I found – I think Mike was talking [saying] a little bit about it. I found that you can – you can cause things to happen. Somebody remind me later on.
Must we not also define our limitations as well as our faculties, or better faculties? And in doing so ten, aren’t we headed toward defining the self?
Is our Reality (capital “R”) merely a collective belief, a paradigm?
Chilton-Pearce had that idea, that this whole life was just a collective belief. He had a wife who was dying of cancer, was sick of cancer or something, and he claimed that if we could change the paradigm we could heal people.
Now behind these questions there is always a that that somebody’s – an angle that somebody looks at reality – or looks at what we see; we’re not reality until we prove ourselves real
What is life and what is death?
Way down the road we’ve got to face that one. And the definition of one hangs on the definition of another.
Can theological facts be established by voting?
If five hundred thousand people believe that there’s a God, then there’s a God. Unless they’re outvoted. If six hundred thousand believe that there’s another [different] God, then we’ve got to believe that there’s another God. But that’s the way a lot of our theological facts are determined. And ethical facts too, ways of living.
Is Mary the mother of God, or is humanity the mother of God? Or neither?
I remember reading where Mary was taken into heaven, physically. And my father was aa plumber. I asked him how did they ever get the plumbing up there, if she went up there physically. She’d have to exist with the physical body. But without any hesitation, they voted that that was the truth. And these are people who teach the truth. So everybody who teaches the truth somehow gets hooked on a sensational delivery.
Is God determined by victorious armies?
Is virtue established by psychological edict?
I wrote these quite a while ago. Now I should read the opposite: Is our lack of virtue today established by psychological edict? I find that things which were frowned upon years ago are now considered psychologically “in”. You’re allowed to do things today that grandpa wouldn’t have been allowed to do. It’s all – God approves of it.
What is sin? An offense against yourself? An offense against your fellow man? Or an offense against God?
Now these are important items. They might seem a little sarcastic, but these are important items. For instance, my sin against the ugly little boy was seemingly against him, but it was basically against myself. It caused me to be hung up for years and years, believing I was superior. So eventually it caused me, way down the line after much suffering, or waiting, to find out that that’s what I was burnt up about.
Of course, an offense against God – you hear this in literature a lot – how can you offend something you don’t know? What’s God’s reaction, earthquakes? In some primitive countries they thought that. It used to be, every time an earthquake erupted [?] over in Hawaii it was because one of the Gods was angry.
Now here’s a very commonplace koan:
Is it a sin to eat meat?
Are the animals our brothers?
There are a lot of people rallying for the protection of animals – because they’ve got such a small field of things they can direct their energy to.
But are the animals our brothers?
Are they possessed of intelligence and soul?
Do animals sin when they eat other animals?
Why should they be better than us?
Or are such sinning animals pardoned because they keep ecology in balance?
Is it wrong to kill except for food?
If so, why do we do wrong by not eating the people we kill?
Now I’ve got to break here for respect of Mr. Dahmer from Wisconsin. He tried at least.
Who is knowledgeable about good?
Is goodness that which we desire, or that which is in itself good?
What iis the condition of being “good in itself”?
Is evil the child of good, or is it a twin?
If a man drives a horse through a plate glass window, should the man be prosecuted or the horse?
If a man steals to feed his children, should we prosecute the man or that which drove him?
If a man rapes a girl should we prosecute a) the man; b) the girl who tempted him; c) his ancestors for genetic inheritance or glandular inclinations; or d) the forces that designed mankind?
What is equality?
You should stop and think about this, this business of equality.
Is Sampson equal to Delilah?
Is a baby equal to a dying man?
These type of – when we get that down the road, certain people have certain things that are good for humanity, or humanity is seemingly pleased that they do it [?] and then suddenly they become superior, not equal.
Well, I’m going to break off here. I’d like to ask you some [?] questions if its alright.
Has anybody here read anything on Zen? [show of hands] Not too many, okay.
Is anyone here interested – are you interested. I’m not saying any “one” of you ?? we don’t have to hold this down to one or two people. But are you basically interested in defining yourself?
The next thing is, how do you expect to go about finding yourself? We talk here a bit, but your circumstances, everybody’s got different circumstances. Of course, everybody’s got different ideas perhaps about finding themselves. Or, not wanting to find out maybe negative things about yourselves. How do you plan to get around that?
If there’s a system, first of all you have to believe that there is a possibility. Do you think many people find themselves? Did you ever think about the percentages? I mean, I think everybody finds out little things about themselves – I’m not talking about things about yourself, I mean finding yourself, knowing yourself for the first time.
For instance, no matter what you thought of yourself last year, if you had a conception of yourself, this year it’s not quite the same. And the barometer is your friends and neighbors. If you’ve got friends, maybe one of them will tell you, “You’re deviating from the character I used to know.” And I think too there’s certain amount in society a need for acting; so we’re inclined to do a lot of acting.
So I’m curious whether you have any – for instance, let’s take some of the people who put up their hands – do you think that people have time for it? Do you really think people have more time to put attention to themselves? Is that necessary?
For instance, if you graduate from college does it matter who you were or who you might change to be, or had changed going to college?
Q. It seems like ??
R. Yes, what I’m getting at, when I see people going to school, somewhere along the line they drop something [that is] very valuable. The person who went to school isn’t the person who graduates. Now I’m wondering, why does this have to be?
Why do we have to get surprised four years later, or for some, eight years later? [?]
And I think the reason is that we never, we take our existence for granted and we take our mentality for granted. And our mentality doesn’t lie to us, it just fails to throw up signs that say, “Hey, you’re changing.”
I’ll give you an example, pleasure ??, it’s like alcohol or dope; that’s something visible, you can see that – if you take dope and then get away from it for a few days, you’ll see what has happened to you. And I’m not speaking about dope alone, I’d say, “Yeah, we all know that, that it changes you.” I’m talking about basically just the change in lifestyle, the restricted [?] lifestyle, whatever it is, the accelerated lifestyle if it’s an accelerated lifestyle – that we are changed, and don’t seem to, the majority of people don’t see to care about itt.
Now I’m also saying that the majority of people consequently will not go near a – it’s very difficult, you can get near a session of self-observation in the line that Zen responds to, the Zen procedure. I think if a person would just spend a little of that in meditation every day – not the idea of becoming a, you know, super-human. But if a person observed himself a little every day he would look back – all you have to do is, not look ahead or at today – look back. Take pictures of yourself every year; every year take a picture of yourself. [like] when you have children, you take pictures of them every year. And you’ll get an evaluation that, things may not be changing ?? always for the best.
So with that in mind, you can alter – if you never dream that something’s happening, you’ve never done any self-observation, things will happen; you’ll be tremendously different, and maybe a person that you’re ?? looking back in your childhood perhaps, see things you don’t like.
And I’m wondering of course how much of life is, extracts too great a payment for the type of education you go through; the education could be in college, it could be working in a coal mine, you always learn something. We change as we go.
R. Well, you don’t remain the same; you’ve got to grow older. That part’s there. But what I’m talking about is ...
R. That’s, well, because you’ll have to reach a point – you will reach a point where everything stops. Everything stops. And the answer breaks through – your whole life-pattern will stop because of the simple fact that there’s no reason for going any further. And the idea is, then, if you do progress further, you will not have the same shenanigans, you’ll not have ...
[ file 2 ends at 41:06
total time 39:55
... Self-observation will stop a lot of that. now, what’s up ahead, the great payoff is when your head really stops. I mean we’re, there is polarity in thinking. We get to conceiving things as being goo, or pleasant, or the opposite pole, unpleasant. You’ve got things that will make you sick, there are things that will put you in a fatal condition, to where you’ll be dying, and possibly if you can realize what’s killing you, you can stop, that’s all. You can change your direction.
Now this is just common sense. But what I’m saying is, people don’t take stock. They don’t go back and look at what has happened in the last ten years, and how much they could have changed it. And if they could have, then it’s possible that right now they need to change.
Now, there’s no great, you can’t chart, just draw pictures of it, and let’s write down the change that happens, all the symptoms, diagnoses and all that sort of thing. But you just know down the line that you either change for the better or change for the worse. We don’t stand still. By change for the worse [?] I mean, got interested in finding out who’s suffering, and not just, because lots of times the people who are suffering are those who are enjoying themselves the most [?]
If you’re puzzled, ask me. yes, back there ...
R. Well, they’re constantly attracted. I mean we’re, what do you call it? Things get in front of you, things that attract your attention, from the time you’re a child. First, a child doesn’t seem to see much, but after awhile he sees a bright piece of glass, and the next thing, maybe he identifies toys and that sort of thing. And that’s down through life.
R. Well, sure, when you find the pretty marbles then you want to create more marbles, your ?? but what I’m getting at is – if you’re going to try to identify yourself, you have to somehow realize number one where you’re at, you have to realize that you’re slipping backwards, as far as progress, mental progress or something of that sort. You have to stop for a moment aand take inventory – basically what’s slipping – and you have to keep digging.
Now again I say, who writes the code for this digging? For every person it’s different. For every person the spiritual life is different. Because we don’t all have the same, at this point in time we don’t all have the same hangup. Or we don’t all have the same laziness; this could be laziness.
Consequently there has to be some observation of this now. To get back into the Zen part of it, there’s no solution. There is no solution. But the constant study of that, for a solution, brings you to a point where nothing matters, nothing really matters. And it doesn’t matter because you’ve transcended the whole plane.
Sometimes it’s a very momentary thing, but it starts right down with basic observation of conduct, observations of thoughts. You’ll think of something and say, “Why did I think of that?”
And of course what happens is the, ultimately a trauma will occur. If it doesn’t generate out of that type of thinking, there will be a traumatic thing occur. And this happens with everybody who breaks through. They break through, and generally it’s very painful, but very beautiful after the trauma is, you know, you surpass it. Then it’s very beautiful, very unusual [?]
R. Well, we can’t stop. You can’t stop. If we could, I wouldn’t be here today. I mean, I don’t have, in other words, my motions, the motions I make, are the results of, the only thing I know to do is convey or teach what I discovered. Consequently [?] I can’t throw everything out of my head, to sit on it, there would be no point in it. There would be no point of me sitting in one spot. Because I’m not going to bo back; I’m not going to experience this again. I know what I experienced, so [I know ] I’m safe. But in the meantime what do you do? You do something that you want to do.
I don’t choose to be a speaker because of money or, you know, meeting people. Most of the people I meet, you don’t see too much of them, because I go around over the country and it’s a long time between visits. I was speaking down in North Carolina at Chapel Hill and Raleigh, that ain’t the name of the university [could it be Duke?] iyt’s in North Carolina, the university.
And so, I meet a lot of people. I don’t remember too many of them, except a few individuals.
R. Prayer? Yes. If a man prays and answers himself, he can acquire. You pray only to yourself. Prayer will change you. Meaning, you change yourself with prayer. But we don’t have, in other words, what I’m trying to say, don’t – if you’ve got a belief and I’m tramping on it, I’m sorry. I don’t want anybody to – if you’ve got of, you know, that everything’s a happy little scenario in which everybody comes out beautiful and all that sort of thing.
But the only person who can answer you is yourself; and I’m talking about the Self that you would become if you were enlightened. It’s inside of you. It’s inside of you. But the reaching for that may on a smaller scale, it may not give you a total rendition of everything that’s going to happen to you. In fact it won’t; it wouldn’t give you that anyhow. But regardless, after awhile you know you’re doing it.
And again, I want to tell you, if I could give you a way to go through life – you don’t have to practice it all the time; but ...
I used to play cards. I got very ill one time and in fact the doctor thought I had a stroke. And I was just 35 or 40 years of age at the time. And to get away from it – I noticed that the longer I stayed in the house, the more, the weaker I got. So I decided to get out and start walking. And I’d walk down about a block, a thousand or two thousand feet to a beer joint. That was as far as I could walk; believe me, that’s the way I felt.
Well, they tolerated me; I went in and would sit down a while and then I’d walk back out. Then after awhile some brought over a deck of cards and they wanted to play euchre. So I played euchre with them. And they they brought out some nickels and they wanted to play poker. So I played poker with them. And I lost a few dollars, but I thought I’m kind of taking my mind off the pains [so it was worth it]. Well, they raised the ante and it got up to where in an evening I could lose five hundred or a thousand dollars.
And I knew that I had no experience in playing poker; when I picked up my cards and looked at them, they knew from the look on my face whether I had a good hand or a bad hand, and that’s the reason I was losing the game. So I decided there had to be a – I was going to change the routine. And I couldn’t change my personality so they may be reading [able to read] my face, but I would call every deal unless they had me beat showing. For example if they had two aces and I only had one I wouldn’t stay in and bet, I’d drop out.
Well, I found there was something strange, because I got so I didn’t care. I was sick for a little bit too. But what brought it on [?] but at the same time I thought, “Geez, what do I care about this? But I’m not going to let them trample all over me.”
So I followed that procedure. And then they’d start – I don’t know how many they had playing poker. But they had what they’d call dealer’s choice – they had a bunch of different games and you had to learn them. And this one was where they would pass you five cards, deal five cards out. And if you had two of a kind you could throw the other three away and bet on your pair. Where if somebody else threw two away, he might have three of a kind, so that might cause ou to think twice.
And what I did, lots of times, I’d keep an odd assortment of cards; I remember one time I had two queens and a jack, and the others were small cards; no gambler would keep that jack. But I kept the jack. Because if I paired up with it I’d have some power. If you had a pair of deuces or fours it’s no good against a pair of queens. But anyhow, I just said to the dealer, “Give me a queen and a jack.” The name of the game was “low card wild”, your low card was wild. meaning if I kept above [?] that jack I’d have three queens. If I had a jack and a queen I’d have five queens because my jacks would be low. This went on. I’d call, actually truthfully; they’d think I was bluffing, or kidding. But no, I’d call exactly what I wanted – and got it. That’s how it happened.
And I remember in cases where the issue was aces. This was, you know, a guy bets fifty dollars. And I had two aces and had one card coming. And I said to the dealer, “I need an ace,” and I got the ace, and saved my fifty bucks.
But what I’m getting at is – you can do things with your mind if you take aa notion. Of course if you’re too tired or too sick, you’ll have to just do as I did, go for a walk and get the sickness off your mind,
But regardless, this thing was very valuable to me, because I found out that there’s a way of living, that if you follow it, everything works out. And that is: don’t desire. But if nobody else needs the money, give me a queen and a jack. You don’t want to – I’d go, in the evening I be a thousand or fifteen hundred dollars ahead, and it’s twelve or one o’clock in the morning, we’d go across the Ohio River into Ohio, and I’d buy them a steak dinner at two o’clock in the morning.
Because I really didn’t want their money. But I did want to get back what I lost, and I didn’t want to sit there and lose more. But I learned that your mind can do tremendous things, your mind or some other factor. But don’t sell yourself short.
FIRST PASS IN PROCESS ENDS HERE
Fields questions about changing oneself and happiness. It’s not wrong to desire. Put yourself in a position where you can allow things to happen. If you want you find truth you should study your ignorance.
More anecdotes re experience in Seattle, When you have an experience you have to find a way to describe intangibles, if you want to tell the truth.
[Last few questions walks away from microphone, audio level extremely low.]
First 6 1/2 minutes of side 4 are blank.
File 4 = 21 minutes.
Continues away from microphone, audio volume extremely low. (8 minutes)
Returns to microphone. Gives contact information, etc. Mentions rapport sittings. Mentions some phenomena. Walks away from microphone again. Mentions the Chautauquas.