True and False “Urges”: The Essence of Human Life

December 26, 2016

This is the essence of human life:

Urges rise up from within us, and these urges are of three types:

–NEEDS: impulses of the outer being (the body) to survive, reproduce, and perpetuate the body (breathing, eating, sex, sleep, etc.)

–DESIRES: expressions of the inner being (the True Self) to bring forth one’s true, deepest nature or character (which is always “positive”)

–GREEDS: destructive inflations by the ego (the false self) of either legitimate NEEDS or genuine DESIRES

——–

NEEDS and DESIRES are natural, normal, and necessary urges that guide correct and proper function in human life.

GREEDS are natural urges inflated by the false self–like cancers. In time, this egoic inflation itself becomes GREED’s urge.

This is the realm of cravings, addictions, attachments, obsessions, and Narcissism…and the dysfunctional human behavior that results from them.

——–

The True Self has these two aspects:

–HEAD, or Reasoning-sense: thoughts, ideas, images, concepts, etc.

–HEART, or Feeling-sense: feelings, impressions, hunches, etc.

HEAD is connected to the deeper SPIRIT, and HEART is connected to the deeper SOUL.

The True Self is like an axle with two wheels, HEAD and HEART, which properly function in balance together. The human Male-Female relationship dynamic reflects these inner “wheels”.

——–

The ego/false self is composed of these two corruptions of the True Self:

–false or incorrect BELIEFS about life, reality, self, and others

–unexpressed negative EMOTIONAL PAIN “left over” from past harmful experiences

BELIEFS are corruptions of the HEAD. EMOTIONAL PAIN is corruption of the HEART.

The ego/false self is like a collection of ropes–each one made with strands of BELIEFS that are cemented together by EMOTIONAL PAIN.  (These “ropes” are all attached to FEAR.)

BELIEFS hold error in place and error holds EMOTIONAL PAIN in place.

The presence of the ego/false self blocks inner guidance from the True Self…and produces ERROR and NEGATIVITY in outer relationships.

——–

The goal and purpose of human life is to realize (become!) one’s True Self. This is done by reducing one’s own error and negativity.

To reduce ERROR, incorrect BELIEFS must be removed.

To reduce NEGATIVITY, unexpressed EMOTIONAL PAIN must be released.

This process reduces the size and power of the ego/false self, which is the source of inner GREEDS–and, therefore, also reduces the outer dysfunctions of ERROR and NEGATIVITY, which perpetuate the ego/false self in others.

Everything in human life is part of the process of reaching the goal.

(Written on August 21, 2012 and freshly edited on December 26, 2016)

 

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Gnosis and the Entanglement of Soul in the Flesh

December 24, 2016

Entanglement. That’s a good way to describe the human soul’s brief yet seemingly long stay on this warm, wet rock we call “Earth.”

Entanglement by choice, I would say, though I have no proof of this to offer. Just my own experience.

Without a body, the soul is light and free, attached to nothing–at least not in the way that we in the flesh become “attached” during our stay in this physical world. How do I know this? Because I experience it when I dream: living without a (physical) body.

The soul may well be a “body,” but not physical in its substance. The flesh we occupy here on Earth may be an imitation of that wispy form that leaves when we die, or when we dream at night, and which sometimes haunts dark corners and empty houses in the wee hours.

The soul is the cookie cutter and the body is the cookie.

It’s hard to put chains on something that isn’t physical, like the soul. That’s why Thoreau said that even though he was jailed for not paying his poll tax, he was nevertheless free. He identified with his soul more than his body.

This means, by the way, that Thoreau had the “gnosis” for which many have suffered and died at the hands of religious authorities. Luckily for him, he lived in the USA, product of the Enlightenment, under laws that came from that enlightened viewpoint.

Enlightenment and gnosis are the same thing: realization that one is not one’s body, and that life is therefore much grander and at the same time less stressful and serious than one previously thought. It is the realization of the soul.

That soul is you, and me, and the religious authorities, and the dog that gave my cats fleas, and my cats, and the fleas, and the grass in which they live now. It is each one, and every one, depending on how you look at it.

That soul, here on Earth, is wrapped up–entangled–in energy that we can detect as waves and particles, atoms and molecules, cells and fluid. And bone.

By choice? Some say so. I think so, but I have no proof. That’s okay, because in things of the soul proof is moot. You know, or you don’t know. Knowing is gnosis. Not knowing is agnosis, no matter what the agnostic person chooses to think or say about the matter.

Agnosis can appear to be atheism, or secularism, or religious fundamentalism. Agnosis is “not knowing,” which is the state of most of us here in this tangled world of flesh. Agnosis is being tangled and not knowing it. Gnosis is knowing one’s entanglement, and (maybe) becoming untangled.

This is why monks came about. Untanglement.

Monkishness, though, is an attempt to escape from the world, if it’s pursued beyond its initial intention of separating oneself from the entanglement of others (who are also without gnosis) in order to gain gnosis. If pursued in itself, monkishness becomes a cocoon, like playing video games or snorting meth or reading fiction–a way to try to forget one’s own entanglement here.

Trying to forget one’s entanglement is the opposite of gnosis. Gnosis is awareness, not forgetting.

The point, then, is not to be untangled, but to know one’s entanglement, to see it clearly. This is not pleasant. But it means becoming aware of both of our natures: the body and the soul. The eidolon and the daemon, as some early Christians called them, respectively.

What one chooses to do with that gnosis is up to that person, which means that it’s up to the soul, the “Higher Self,” the Real You. One sign of gnosis is obedience to that inner Self, whose directions are not always pleasant.

After all, gnosis or agnosis, we’re all still entangled here in the flesh.

(Written on August 16, 2011 and freshly edited on December 24, 2016)


On the Importance of Consideration

December 17, 2016

There is a dividing line between two quite different ways of thinking and living, and everyone seems to rest on one side or the other.

Two Sides of a Fence

Children exemplify both sides more equally than adults, who have lived experiences that have shaped their thoughts behavior in one direction or the other. Adults seem to be more on one side or the other than children are.

The dividing line is: those who consider the viewpoints of others and those who do not consider the viewpoints of others.

It’s not my intention here to divide people, but to point out an existing division and examine it. By observing humans (most importantly myself), I’ve determined that some are basically considerate of others and some are basically not. It’s not a black-and-white thing, but rather a continuum of blacker or whiter grayness.

Consideration of others can also be called empathy. Inconsideration of others can also be called narcissism.

Some people seem to force consideration in ourselves at crucial moments, or to be compelled by some inner voice to “do the right thing” when we have the opportunity to show consideration…or not. Some of us deliberate, mulling over moral duties or imagining what God or Grandma would think of our choice in that moment. After such decision-making, many of us then act in consideration rather than blatant or obvious inconsideration.

Indeed, this deliberation, compulsion, and even forcing are themselves “consideration” for others–at least to the degree that they aren’t merely calculated or fearful acts of self-preservation. The outward, visible consequence (such as saying, “Thank you”) comes after the “consideration” itself.

A Window to Inner Values

Most inconsideration appears in mundane daily interactions like driving, shopping, or talking to our kids. (One’s parenting, and its results in the character of one’s grown children, can tell others a lot about one’s side of the narcissistic/empathetic “consideration line” that I’m describing here. Where do you suppose kids learn to be considerate–or not–and whose behavior gave them a daily example?)

I drive a lot, so I have lots of opportunities to show either consideration or inconsideration, and I also see a lot of both attitudes in others when they drive in my vicinity. I often feel that I have a glimpse into another person’s psyche when these encounters happen, either between myself and another, or as an observer when other people interact in traffic.

I see driving as a microcosm of human behavior because I believe that the values one shows through driving reflect the values they have at all times. This belief has merit so far in my own experience–although anyone can have a bad day and speed or cut someone off in traffic.

The same can be true of one’s shopping habits, parenting practices, and in many other ways: talking to telemarketers on the phone; returning an item at the store; working in sales or customer service; selling one’s used car; and sharing or not sharing what one has with others in need.

Although a lot of ways that we can show either our narcissism or our empathy might seem trivial, one’s “small” actions show clearly one’s overall attitude. If a person is inconsiderate to the checkout lady, why would he or she act differently toward other people, in other situations?

A duck will quack, either loud or soft. But it will not bock like a chicken–especially in a crisis.

On the inconsiderate side of the fence, people seem most interested in causing their own will to negate or override the will of others, rather than sharing with others or seeking consensual mutual agreement. It seems that, in their fear–and all fears are ultimately fears of death, pain, or not existing–they are blind to the equally valid needs of others.

There’s a word for this blind and fearful inconsiderate negation of the will of other people by an adult human being: Narcissism, with a capital “N”.

“Do Unto Others”…How?

In a Christian society, there would be no destitute, homeless people (except by their own preference) and no extremely wealthy people, either (except perhaps by mutual social agreement). Consideration does not allow others to suffer when one has the ability to alleviate it.

In our own supposedly Christian society, even those of us who don’t accept the teachings of the Church in all its versions generally regard Jesus as a teacher and wise man. It’s from Jesus (and, yes, others) that we learn to be considerate:

“In all things, to unto others as you would have them do unto you.”

If people in our society are following this “Golden” Rule, then it seems from their behavior that many folks would have others be inconsiderate to them. Perhaps they expect others to treat them that way, and so they treat others inconsiderately in kind, in advance, out of habit or programming.

This idea–that inconsiderateness is a pre-emptive defense mechanism–suggests that it is a product of the “ego” that I identify as the immediate source of mental and emotional suffering in self and others. Out of fear, the ego seeks only to preserve itself, in the belief that not doing so (such as being considerate of others) is suicide.

This, again, is Narcissism.

Ego and Spirit

So, then, inconsideration (or narcissism) is a fear-based egoic thought pattern–as opposed to consideration (or empathy), which in my personal scheme of things is a trust-based spiritual thought pattern. We are always under the influence of one or the other, being led in our thoughts and actions by one or the other.

Consideration is certainly a spiritual quality or “value”–that is, it comes from the Spirit, from the deepest inner being, the truest Self which is one’s most genuine expression, without the contamination of the wrong ideas of the ego.

That same Spirit exists in others as their deepest inner being, and those who perceive Spirit in themselves also recognize Spirit in others.

This recognition of Self-in-others is the essence of consideration (empathy). It is the essence of spirituality and the Golden Rule. It is also the essence of a healthy and functional society, particularly a society whose members claim to follow the teachings of Jesus.

Written on January 29, 2011, and freshly edited on December 17, 2016.


On Function and Dysfunction in Human Beings

December 14, 2016

A human being has an inner guidance system.  These are a person’s SPIRIT and SOUL.

SPIRIT guides through inspired MIND.  SOUL guides through intuitive HEART.

Inspired MIND provides intelligent THOUGHT.  Intuitive HEART provides instinctive FEELING.

Intelligent THOUGHT leads to TRUTH.  Instinctive FEELING be leads to LOVE.

TRUTH brings ORDER.  LOVE brings HARMONY.

This is proper FUNCTION in a human being.

FUNCTION is HAPPINESS.

——–

LIES and HARM come from without.

LIES cause (false) BELIEFS in MIND.  HARM causes (emotional) PAIN in HEART.

BELIEFS replace THOUGHT and TRUTH.  PAIN replaces FEELING and LOVE.

BELIEFS block INSPIRATION from SPIRIT.  PAIN blocks INTUITION from SOUL.

FALSE BELIEFS in MIND cause ERROR.  EMOTIONAL PAIN in HEART causes NEGATIVITY.

ERROR spreads LIES to MIND in others.  NEGATIVITY spreads HARM to HEART in others.

This is DYSFUNCTION in human beings.

DYSFUNCTION is SUFFERING.

——–

TRUTH and LOVE are REALITY.  SUFFERING is a corruption of REALITY.

SUFFERING brings CRISIS.  CRISIS brings SURRENDER to REALITY.

SURRENDER brings HONESTY.  HONESTY leads to TRUTH.

TRUTH destroys LIES and BELIEFS in MIND.  MIND receives INSPIRATION from SPIRIT.

Inspired MIND focuses on PAINFUL HEART.  HEART OPENS and releases EMOTIONAL PAIN.

HEART receives INTUITION from SOUL.  LOVE from SOUL heals HARM in HEART.

SPIRIT unites with SOUL in the person.  ORDER and HARMONY destroy DYSFUNCTION.

As DYSFUNCTION ends, SUFFERING ends.

Proper FUNCTION returns.

HAPPINESS returns.

REALITY returns.

——–

TRUTH and LOVE are the most powerful defense against LIES and HARM.

HONESTY is the most powerful antidote.


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