Category Archives: Feelings

Everyhour in every day we get better and better

A suggestion solemnly repeated many times, particularly after the turn of the century. This might sound like a bit of overly optimistic, though maybe delightful, nonsense. To a degree, however, that suggestion worked for millions of people. It was not a cure-all. It did not help those who believed in the basic untrustworthiness of their own natures. The suggestion was far from a bit of fluff, however, for it could serve — and it did — as a framework about which new beliefs could rally.

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We often have in our society the opposite suggestion, however, given quite regularly: “Everyday, in every way, I am growing worse, and so is the world.” We have meditations for disaster, beliefs that invite private and mass tragedies. They are usually masked by the polite clothing of conventional acceptance. Many thousands may die in a particular battle or war, for example. The deaths are accepted almost as a matter of course. These are victims of war, without question. It seldom occurs to anyone that these are victims of beliefs — since the guns are quite real, and the bombs and the combat.

The enemy is obvious. His intentions are evil. Wars are basically examples of mass suicide — embarked upon, however, with all of the battle’s paraphernalia, carried out through mass suggestion, and through the nation’s greatest resources, by men who are convinced that the universe is unsafe, that the self cannot be trusted, and that strangers are always hostile. We take it for granted that the species is aggressively combative. We must out-think the enemy nation before we ourselves are destroyed. These paranoiac tendencies are largely hidden beneath man’s nationalistic banners.

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“The end justifies the means.” This is another belief, most damaging. Religious wars always have paranoiac tendencies, for the fanatic always fears conflicting beliefs, and systems that embrace them.

We have occasional epidemics that flare up, with victims left dead. Partially, these are also victims of beliefs, for we believe that we have natural body is the natural prey of viruses and diseases over which we have no personal control, except as it is medically provided. In the medical profession, the overall suggestion that operates is one that emphasizes and exaggerates the body’s vulnerability, and plays down its natural healing abilities. People die when they are ready to die, for reasons that are their own. No person dies without a reason. We are not taught that, however, so people do not recognize their own reasons for dying, and are not taught to recognize their own reasons for living — because we are told the life itself is an accident in a cosmic game of chance.

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Therefore, we cannot trust our own intuitions. We think that our purpose in life must be to be something else, or someone else, than we are. In such a situation many people seek out causes, and hope to merge the purposes of the cause with their own unrecognized one.

There have been many great men and women involved in causes, to which they gave their energies, resources, and support. Those people, however, recognized the importance of their own beings, and added that vitality to causes in which they believed. They did not submerge their individuality, and became more themselves. They extended their horizons, pushed beyond the conventional mental landscapes — driven by zest and vitality, by curiosity and love, and not by fear.

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Many people lose their lives in tragedies. People willingly take their lives at the command of their leaders. No armies stand outside. Those people succumb to an epidemic of beliefs, to an environment [that is] closed mentally and physically. The villains consists of the following ideas that the world is unsafe, and growing deadly; that the species itself is tainted by a deadly intent; that the individual has no power over his or her reality; that society or social conditions exist as things in themselves, and their purposes run directly counter to the fulfillment of the individual; and lastly, that the end justifies the means, and that the action of any kind of god is powerless in the world.

The people who kill themselves are idealists — perfectionists of exaggerated quality, whose very desire for the good was tainted and distorted by those beliefs just mentioned. For those beliefs must gradually shut out perception of good from experience.

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Man/Woman is of good intent. When we see evil everywhere in man’s intent — in our own actions and those of others — then we set oneself up against our own existence, and that of our kind. We focus upon the gulf between our ideals and our experience, until the gulf is all that is real. We will not see man’s and woman’s good intent, or we will do so ironically — for in comparison with our ideals, good in the world appears to be so minute as to be a mockery.

To this extent experience becomes closed. Such people are frightened of themselves, and of the nature of their existence. They may be intelligent or stupid, gifted, or mundane, but they are frightened of experiencing themselves as themselves, or of acting according to their own wishes. They help create the dogma or system or cult to which they “fall prey.” They expect their leader to act for them. To a certain extent he/she soaks up their paranoia, until it becomes an unquenchable force in him/her, and he/she is their “victim” as much as his/her followers are his/her “victims.”

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In the Middle East affair, we have “red-blooded Americans” dying on a foreign shore, under a banner of wars, which under certain circumstances have been acceptable. We did not have Americans dying in a bloody revolution, caught among terrorists. We had instead Americans succumbing in a foreign land to some belief that are peculiarly American, and home-grown.

We have American belief that money will solve almost any social problem, that the middle-class way of life is the correct “democratic” one, and that the difficulty between blacks and whites in particular can be erased by applying social bandages, rather than by attacking the basic beliefs behind the problem.

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Many young men and women have come to adulthood in fine ranch houses in good neighborhoods. They would seem to be at the peak of life, the product of the best America has to offer. They never had to work for a living, perhaps. they may have attended colleges — but they are the first to realize that such advantages do not necessarily add to the quality of life, for they are the first to arrive at such an enviable position.

The parents have worked to give their children such advantages, and the parents themselves are sometimes confused by their children’s attitudes. The money and position, however, have often been attained as a result of the belief in man’s and woman’s competitive nature — and that belief itself erodes the very prizes it produces: The fruit is bitter in the mouth. Many of the parents believed, quite simply, that the purpose of life was to make more money. Virtue consisted of the best car, or house or swimming pool — proof that one could survive in a tooth-and-claw world. But the children wondered: What about those other feelings that stirred in their consciousness? What about those purposes they sensed? The hearts of some of them were like vacuums, waiting to be filled. They looked for values, but at the same time they felt that they were themselves sons and daughters of a species tainted, at loose ends, with no clear destinations.

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They tried various religions, and in the light of their opinions of themselves their earlier advantages seemed only to damn them further. They tried social programs, and found a curious sense of belonging with the disadvantaged, for they were also rootless. The disadvantaged and the advantaged alike then join in a bond of hopelessness, endowing a leader with a power they felt they did not possess.

They finally retreated into isolation from the world they knew, and the voice of their leader at the was magnified merging of their own voices. In death they fulfilled their purposes, merging a mass statement. It would make Americans question the nature of [suicide’s]their society, their religions, their politics, and their beliefs.

Each suicide decided to go along that course.

Paranoia and its manifestations

Paranoia is extremely interesting because it shows the ways in which private beliefs can distort events that connect the individual with other people. The events are “distorted.” yet while the paranoid is convinced that those events are valid, this does not change other people’s perception of the same happenings.

Paranoia is most commonly associated with intoxication and withdrawal symptoms from drugs, including alcohol and cocaine. However, paranoia is seen in a wide range of people for many different reasons. Paranoia can be a feature of another mental illness, like anxiety or depression, but most commonly occurs in psychotic disorders like schizophrenia and paranoid personality disorder. The more severe the mental illness is, the less likely the said person is going to realize that they are experiencing paranoia instead of threat from people, or even the world.

Alternatively, elderly people suffering from illnesses like dementia can experience paranoia as a symptom of their illness. This is due to the way the brain is altered throughout the illness. Paranoia will usually start with suspicious delusions that the person suffering from Alzheimer’s experiences; they may imagine that their family members are stealing from them, or that someone is following them. As family members, it can make it difficult to interact with the person with Alzheimer’s (you can take a look at these tips on Alzheimer’s Communication if you’re struggling with this) and it can be even more difficult to calm the person down than those suffering from mental illness or drug abuse. Unfortunately, treating paranoia in those with Alzheimer’s is hard due to the alterations of the brain constantly.

Whatever the case, paranoia takes many different forms and impacts many different people. Paranoia does not care for whoever it takes a hold on, and it’s not something that is easily fought off.

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What I want to emphasize here is the paranoid’s misinterpretation of innocuous personal or mass events, and to stress the ways in which physical events can be put together symbolically, so that from them a reality can be created that is almost part physical and part dream.

We must of course interpret events in a personal manner. We create them. Yet there is also a meeting ground of more or less shared physical encounters, a sense plateau that offers firm-enough footing for the agreement of a mass-shared world. With most mental aberrations, we are dealing with people whose private symbols are so heavily thrust over prime sense data that even those data sometimes become almost invisible. These individuals often use the physical world in the way that most people use the dream world, so that for them it is difficult to distinguish a private and a publicly-shared reality.

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Many such people are highly creative and imaginative. Often, however, they have less of a solid foundation than others in dealing with a mass-shared reality, and so they attempt to impose their own private symbols upon the world, or to form a completely private world. I am speaking in general terms now, and in those terms such people are leery of human relationships. Each person forms his or her own reality, and yet that personal reality must also be shared with others, and must be affected by the reality of others.

As creatures dwelling in time and space, our senses provide us with highly specific data, and with a cohesive-enough physical reality. Each person may react to the seasons in a very personal manner, and yet we all share those natural events. They provide a framework for experience. It is up to the conscious mind to interpret sense events as clearly and concisely as possible. This allows for the necessary freedom of action for psychological and physical mobility. We are an imaginative species, and so the physical world is colored, charged, by our own imaginative projections, and powered by the great sweep of the emotions. But when we are confused or upset, it is an excellent idea to return our attention to the natural world as it appears at any given moment — to sense its effect upon us as separate from our own projections.

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We form our own reality. Yet if we are in the Northeast in the wintertime, we had better be experiencing a physical winter, or we are far divorced from primary sense data.

The paranoid has certain other beliefs. Let us take a hypothetical individual — one who is convinced he has a healthy body, and is proud of mental stability. Let us call this friend Paul.

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Paul [for his own reasons] may decide that his body is out to get him and punish him, rather than say, the FBI. He may symbolically pick out an organ or a function, and he will misinterpret many body events in the same way that another may misinterpret mass events. Any public service announcements, so-called, publicizing symptoms connected with his sensitive area, will immediately alarm him. He will consciously and unconsciously focus upon that [art of the body,] anticipating its malfunction. Our friend can indeed alter the reality of his body.

Paul will interpret such body events in a negative fashion, and as threatening, so that some quite normal sensations will serve the same functions as a fear of policemen, for example. If he keeps this up long enough, he will indeed strain a portion of the body, and by telling others about it he will gradually begin to affect not only his personal world, but that part of the mass world with which he has contact: It will be known that he has an ulcer, or whatever. In each case we are dealing with a misinterpretation of basic sense data.

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When I say that a person misinterprets sense data, I mean that the fine balance between mind and matter becomes overstrained in one direction. There are, then, certain events that connect the world. Though when everything’s said and done these events come from outside of the world’s order, nevertheless they appear as constants within it. Their reality is the result of the most precise balancing of forces so that certain mental events appear quite real, and others are peripheral. We have dusk and dawn. If in the middle of the night, and fully awake, we believe it is sunrise in physical terms, and cannot differentiate between our personal reality and the physical one, then that balance is disturbed.

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The paranoid organizes the psychological world about his/her obsession, for such it is, and he/she cuts everything out that does not apply, until all conforms to his/her beliefs. An examination of unprejudiced sense data at any point would at any time bring him/her relief.

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The pristine uniqueness of the individual

I strongly state the pristine uniqueness of the individual. I also say that there are no limitations to the self. Many people express themselves through their diamond art, I’ve heard how-to-frame-diamond-paintings framing is a great way to explore yourself through an artistic medium. The initial two statements can appear to be contradictory. When we are children, our sense of identity does not include old age in usual experience. When we are an old person, we do not identify ourselves as a child. Our sense of identity, then, changes physically through the years. In a way it seems that we add on to oneself through experience, becoming “more than we were before.” We move in and out of probable self hoods, while at the same time — usually with the greatest of ease — we maintain an identity of oneself. The mosaics of consciousness are brilliant to behold.

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When I speak of mosaics, one might think of small segments, shining and of different shapes and sizes. Yet the mosaics of consciousness are more like lights, radiating through themselves and through a million spectrums.

The infant sees mental images before birth, before the eyes are open. Our memory, it seems, is our own — yet we have a history of other existences. We remember other faces, even though the mind we call the conscious one may not recognize the images from that deep inner memory. It must often clothe them in fantasy. We are oneself. Each self is secure in its own identity, unique in its characteristics, meeting life and the seasons in a way that has never happened before, and will never happen again — yet still we are a unique version of our greater self. We share in certain overall patterns that are in themselves original.

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It is as we shared, say, a psychological planet, populated by people who had the same roots, the same ground of being — as if we shared the same continents, mountains, and oceans. Instead we share patterns of development, images, memories, and desires. There are reflected in our physical life, and in one way or another elements of our life are shared in the same fashion.

Painting can be a teacher, leading us through and beyond images, and back to them again. Painting was meant to bring out from the recesses of our being the accumulation of our knowledge in the form of images — not or people we might meet now on the street, but portraits of the residents of the mind. The residents of the mind are very real. In a certain fashion, they are our parents more than our parents are, and when we express their realities, they are also expressing ours. All time is simultaneous. Only the illusion of time on each of our parts keeps us from greeting each other. To some extent, when we paint such portraits we are forming psychic bridges between ourselves and those other selves: Our own identity as oneself grows.

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Only in a manner of speaking, there are certain –“power selves,” or personalities; parts of our greater identity who utilized fairly extraordinary amounts of energy in very constructive ways. That energy is also a part of our personality — and as we paint such images we will undoubtedly feel some considerable bursts of ambition, and even exuberance. The feelings will allow us to identify the images of such personalities.

The paint brush can indeed be a key to other worlds, or course. Our own emotional feelings carry over in such paintings. Encourage the dream activity, and there will be a correspondence between our dreams, paintings and writings. Each one encourages the others. Writing gains vitality from painting, our painting from writing — and the dreaming self at one time or another is in contact with all other Aspects of reality.

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If we cannot trust our private self, then we will not trust oneself in our relationships with others or in society.

If we do not trust private self, we will be afraid of power, for we will fear that we are bound to misuse it. We may then purposefully put oneself in a position of weakness, while all of the time claiming that we seek influence. Not understanding oneself, we will be in a quandary, and the mechanics of experience will appear mysterious and capricious.

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There are certain situations, however, in which those mechanics can be clearly seen, and so let us examine some such circumstances. A few that I discuss may be exaggerated, in that they are not “normal” conditions in most people’s lives. Their rather bizarre nature, however, throws a giant spotlight upon intents, purposes, and cross-purposes, that too often appear in the lives of quite normal men and women.

When people are convinced that the self is untrustworthy, for whatever reasons, or that the universe is not safe, then instead of luxuriating in the use of their abilities, exploring the physical and mental environments, they begin to pull in their realities — to contract their abilities, to over-control their environments. They become frightened people — and frightened people do not want freedom, mental or physical. They want shelter, a definite set of rules. They want to be told what is good and bad. They lean toward compulsive behavior patterns. They seek out leaders — political, scientific, or religious — who will order their lives for them.

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I want to discuss about people who are frightened of themselves, and the roles that they seek in private and social behavior. And discuss closed environments, whether mental or physical, in which questioning becomes taboo and dangerous. Such environments may be private, as in the case of persons with what are generally called mental disorders, or they may be shared by many, in — for example — mass paranoia.

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There are religious cults, and there are also scientific ones. These are people who follow a cult that is purely private, with rules and regulations as rigorous as any sent down to a group of frightened followed by a despot of whatever kind. Such conditions exist, and I hope that my blog discussion will lead to great understanding. An introduction of concepts that will privately encourage greater productivity and creativity, and therefore automatically contribute to more healthy and sane social ways.

People die for a “cause” only when they have found no cause to live by

And when it seems that the world is devoid of meaning, then some people will make a certain kind of statement through the circumstances connected with their own deaths.

We will shortly return to a discussion of such “causes,” and their relationship with the person’s feeling that life has or does not have a meaning.

For now, consider a very simple act. You want to walk across the room and pick up a paper, for example. That purpose is simple and direct enough. It automatically propels your body in the proper fashions, even though you are not consciously aware of the inner mechanisms involved. You don’t imagine the existence of blocks or impediments in your way, in the form of additional furniture placed in your path by accident, fate, or design. You make a simple straight path in the proper direction. The act has meaning because it is something you want to do.

There are purposes not nearly as easy to describe, however, intents of psychological nature, yearnings toward satisfactions not so easily categorized. Man and woman experiences ambitions, desires, likes and dislikes of a highly emotional nature — and at the same time he/she has intellectual beliefs about oneself, his/her feelings, and the world. These are the result of training, for we use our mind as we have been taught.

One person may desire fame, and even possess certain abilities that he or she wants to use, and that will indeed lead to that claim. Such a person may also believe that fortune or fame leads to unhappiness, licentiousness, or in some other way brings about disastrous conditions. Here we have a clear purpose to use abilities and receive acclaim. We also have another quite opposing clear purpose: to avoid fame.

There are people who want children and mates, and have those excellent qualities that would serve them well as parents. Some of those same individuals may be convinced that love is wrong, however or that sex is debasing, or that children mean the end of youth. Such persons may then find themselves breaking off good relationships with those of the other sex for no apparent reason, or forcing the other party to break with them. Here again we have two clear purposes, but they oppose each other.

Those who believe in the ultimate meaning of their lives can withstand such pressures, and often such dilemmas, and others like them, are resolved in an adequate-enough fashion. Disappointments, conflicts, and feelings of powerlessness of those who believe that life itself has little meaning. Such people begin to imagine impediments in their paths as surely as anyone would who imagined that physical barriers were suddenly put up between them and a table they wanted to reach at the end of the room.

When we simply want to reach a destination in space, there are maps to explain the nature of the land and waterways. When we are speaking of psychological role of destinations, however, there is more to consider.

Once our body is mobilized when we want to move. It responds to our intent and purpose. It is our private inner environment, psychologically speaking. Our psychological intent instantly mobilize our energies on a psychic level. We have what I will call “a body of thought,” and it is that “body” that constantly springs into action at our intent.

When we want to go downtown, we know that destination exists, though we may be miles away from it. When we want to find a mate we take it for granted that a potential mate exists, though where in space and time we do not know. Our intent to find a mate sends out “strands of consciousness,” however, composed of desire and intent. Like detectives, these search the world, looking in a completely different way than a physical sleuth. The world is probed with our characteristics in mind, seeking for someone else with characteristics that will best suit our own. And whatever our purpose is, the same procedure on a psychic level is involved.

The organization of our feelings, beliefs, and intents directs the focus about which our physical reality is built. This follows with impeccable spontaneously and order. If we believe in the sinfulness of the world, for instance, then we will search out from normal sense data those facts that confirm our belief. But beyond that, at other levels we also organize our mental world in such a way that we attract to oneself events that will confirm our beliefs.

Death is a part of us, even as birth is. Its import varies according to the individual — and in a certain fashion, death is our last chance to make a statement of import in any given life, if we feel we have not done so earlier.

Some people’s deaths are quiet periods. Some others’ are exclamation points, so that later it can be said that the person’s death loomed almost greater in importance that the life itself. Some people die in adolescence, filled with the flush of life’s possibilities, still half-dazzled by the glory of childhood, and ready to step with elation upon the threshold of adulthood — or so it seems. Many such young persons prefer to die at that time, where they feel the possibilities for fulfillment are intricate and endless. They are often idealists, who beneath extraordinary ability — still feel that life could no more than sully those abilities, dampen those spiritual winds, and darken that promise that could never be fulfilled.

This is not the reason for all such deaths by any means, but there is usually an implied statement in them so that the death seems to have an additional meaning that makes parents and contemporaries question. Such individuals usually choose deaths with a high dramatic content, because regardless of appearances they have not been able to express the dramatic contents of their psyches in the world as it seems to be to them. They turn their deaths into lessons for other people, forcing them to ask questions that would not be asked before. There are also mass statements of the same kind for people come together to die, however, to seeks company in death as they do in life People who feel powerless, and who find no cause for living, can come together then and “die for a cause” that did not give them the will or reason to live. They will seek out others of their kind.

The inner mechanics of emotions and beliefs are complicated, but these are individuals who feel that physical life has failed them. They are powerless in society. They think in black and white, and conflicts between their emotions, and their beliefs about their emotions, lead them to seek some kind of shelter in a rigid belief system that will give them rules to go by. Such systems lead to the formation of cults, and the potential members seek out a leader who will serve their purposes as surely as they seem to serve his/her — through an inner mechanics of which each member is at least somewhat aware.

The personality’s innate need to feel that his or her life has purpose and meaning.

Little is said about the personality’s innate desire for drama, the kind of inner spiritual drama in which an individual can feel part of a purpose that is his or her own, and yet is greater than oneself.

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There is a need within man and woman to feel and express heroic impulses. His true instincts lead him or her spontaneously toward the desire to better the quality of his/her own life and that of others. He/she must see oneself as a force in the world.

Animals also dramatize. They possess emotions. They feel a part of the drama of the seasons. They are fully alive, in those terms. Nature in all of its varieties is so richly encountered by the animals that it becomes their equivalent of our structures of culture and civilization. They respond to its rich nuances in ways impossible to describe, so that their “civilizations” are built up through the inter-weavings of sense data that we cannot possibly perceive.

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They know, the animals, in a way that we cannot, that their private existences have a direct impact upon the nature of reality. They are engaged, then. An individual can possess wealth and health, can enjoy satisfying relationships, and even fulfilling work, and yet live a life devoid of the kind of drama of which I speak — for unless we feel that life itself has meaning, then each life must necessarily seem meaningless, and all love and beauty end only in decay.

When we believe in a universe accidentally formed, and when we think we are a member of a species accidentally spawned, then private life seems devoid of meaning, and events can seem chaotic. Disastrous events thought to originate in a god’s wrath could at least be understood in that context, but many of us live in a subjective world in which the events of our lives appear to have no particular reason — or indeed sometimes seem to happen in direct opposition to our wishes.

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What kind of events can people form when they feel powerless, when their lives seem robbed of meaning — and what mechanics lie behind those events?

Organized religion has committed many important blunders

Yet for centuries Christianity provided a context accepted by large portions of the known world, in which experience could be judged against very definite “rules” — experience once focused, chiseled, and yet allowed some rich expression as long it stayed within the boundaries set by religious dogma.

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If a man or woman was sinner, still there was a way of redemption, and the immortality of the soul went largely unquestioned, of course. There were set rules for almost all kinds of social encounters and religious experiences. There were set ceremonies accepted by nearly all for death and birth, and the important stages in between. Church was the authority, and the individual lived out his or her life almost automatically structuring personal experience so that it fit within the accepted norm.

Within those boundaries, certain kinds of experience flourished, and of course others did not. In our society there is no such overall authority. The individual must make his or her own way through a barrage of different value systems, making decisions that were largely un-thought of when a son/daughter followed his or her father’s trade automatically, for example, or when marriages were made largely for economic reasons.

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So our present experience is quite different than that of those forefathers who lived in the medieval world, say, and we cannot appreciate the differences in our [present] subjective attitudes, and in the quality, as well as the kind of, social intercourse that exists now. For all its many errors, at its best Christianity proclaimed the ultimate meaning for each person’s life. There was no question but that life had meaning, whether or not we might agree as to the particular meaning assigned to it.

Men’s and women’s dreams were also different in those times, filled far more with metaphysical images, for example, more alive with saints and demons — but overall one framework of belief existed, and all experience was judged in its light. Now, we have far more decisions to make, and in a world of conflicting beliefs, brought into our living room through internet, newspapers and television, we must try to find the meaning of our life, or the meaning of life.

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We can think in terms of experiments. We may try this or that. We may run from one religion to another, or from religion to science, or vice versa. This is true in a way that was impossible for the masses of the people in medieval times. The improved methods of communication alone mean that we are everywhere surrounded by varying theories, cultures, cults, and schools, In some important areas this means that the mechanics of experience are actually becoming more apparent, for they are no longer hidden beneath one belief system.

Our subjective options are far greater, and yet so of course is the necessity to place that subjective experience into meaningful terms. If we believe that we do indeed form our own reality, then we instantly come up against a whole new group of questions. If we actually construct our own experience, individually and en-masse, why does so much of it seem negative? We create our own reality, or it is created for us. It is an accidental universe, or it is not.

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Now in medieval times organized religion, or organized Christianity, presented each individual with a screen of beliefs through which the personal self was perceived. Portions of the self that were not perceivable through that screen were almost invisible to the private person. Problems were sent by God as punishment or warning. The mechanics of experience were hidden behind that screen.

The belief of [Charles] Darwin and of [Sigmund] Freud alike have formed together to give us a different screen. Experience is accepted and perceived only as it is sieved through that screen. If Christendom saw man and woman as blighted by original sin, Darwinian and Freudian views see them as part of a flawed species in which individual life rests precariously, ever at the beck and call of the species’ needs, and with survival as the prime goal — a survival, however, without meaning. The psyche’s grandeur is ignored, the individual’s sense of belonging with nature eroded, for it is at nature’s expense, it seems, that he or she must survive. One’s greatest dreams and worst fears alike become the result of glandular imbalance, or of neuroses from childhood traumas.

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Yet in the midst of these beliefs each individual seeks to find a context in which his or her life has meaning, a purpose which will rouse the self to action, a drama in whose theme private actions will have significance.

There are intellectual values and emotional ones, and sometimes there are needs of an emotional nature that must be met regardless of intellectual judgments. The church provided a cosmic drama in which even the life of the sinner had value, even if only to show God’s compassion. In our society, however, the sterile psychic environment often leads to rebellion: People take steps to bring meaning and drama into their lives, even if intellectually they refuse to make the connection.

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When God went out the window for large masses of people, fate took His(or her) place, and volition also became eroded.

A person could neither be proud of personal achievement nor blamed for failure, since in large measure his or her characteristics, potentials, and lacks were seen as the result of chance, heredity, and of unconscious mechanisms over which the or she seemingly had little control. The devil went underground, figuratively speaking, so that many of his or her mischievous qualities and devious characteristics were assigned to the unconscious. Man and woman was seen as divided against oneself — a conscious figurehead, resting uneasily above the mighty haunches of unconscious beastliness. He or she believed oneself to be programmed by his or her heredity and early environment, so that it seemed he must be forever unaware of his own true motives.

Not only was he or she set against oneself, but he or she saw oneself as a part of an uncaring mechanistic universe, devoid of purpose, intent, and certainly a universe that cared not a whit for the individual, but only for the species. Indeed, a strange world.

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It was in many respects a new world, for it was the first one in which large portions of humanity believed that they were isolated from nature and God, and in which no grandeur was acknowledged as a characteristic of the soul. Indeed, for many people the idea of the soul itself became unfashionable, embarrassing, and out of date. Here I use the words “soul” and “psyche” synonymously That psyche has been emerging more and more in whatever guise it is allowed to as it seeks its vitality, its purpose and exuberance, and as it seeks out new contexts in which to express a subjective reality that finally spills over the edges of sterile beliefs.

The psyche expresses itself through action, of course, but it carries behind it the individual — and it automatically attempts to produce a social climate or civilization that is productive and creative. It projects its desires outward onto the physical world, seeking through private experience and social contact to actualize its potentials, and in such a way that the potentials of others are also encouraged. It seeks to flesh out its dreams, and when these find no response in social life, it will nevertheless take personal expression in a kind of private religion of its own.

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Basically, religion is an activity through which man and woman attempts to see the meaning of his or her life. It is a construction based on deep psychic knowledge. No matter what the name it might go by, it represents man’s and woman’s connection with the universe.

Mechanics of Experience

Our world and everything in it exists first in the imagination. We have been taught to focus all of our attention upon physical events, so that they carry the authenticity of reality for us. Thoughts, feelings, or beliefs appear to be secondary, subjective — or somehow not real — and they seem to rise in response to an already established field of physical data.

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We usually think, for example, that our feelings about a given event are primarily reactions to the events itself. It seldom occurs to us that the feelings themselves might be primary, and that the particular event was somehow a response to our emotions, rather than the other way around. The all-important matter of our focus is largely responsible for our interpretation of any event.

For an exercise, imagine for awhile that the subjective world of our thoughts, feelings, inner images and fantasies represent the “rock-bed reality” from which individual physical events emerge. Look at the world for a change from the inside out, so to speak. Imagine that physical experience is somehow the materialization of our own subjective reality. Forget what we have learned about reactions and stimuli. Ignore for a time everything we have believed and see our thoughts as the real events. Try to view normal physical occurrences as the concrete physical reactions in space and time to our own feelings and beliefs. For indeed our subjective world causes our physical experience.

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In titling this discussion I used the word “mechanics,” because mechanisms suggest smooth technological workings. While the world is not a machine — its inner workings are such that no technology could ever copy them — this involves a natural mechanics in which the inner dimensions of consciousness everywhere emerge to form a materialized, cohesive, physical existence. Again, our interpretation of identity teach us to focus awareness in such a way that we cannot follow the strands of consciousness that connect us with all portions of nature. In a way, the world is like a multidimensional, exotic plant growing in space and time, each thought, dream, imaginative encounter, hope or fear, growing naturally into its own bloom — a plant of incredible variety, never for a moment the same, in which each smallest root, leaf, stem, or flower has a part to play and is connected with the whole.

Even those of us who intellectually agree that we form our own reality find it difficult to accept emotionally in certain areas. We are, of course, literally hypnotized into believing that our feelings arise in response to events. Our feelings, however, cause the events we perceive. Secondarily, we do of course then react to those events.

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We have been taught that our feelings must necessarily be tied to specific physical happenings. We may be sad because a relative has died, for example, or because we have lost a job, or because we have been rebuffed by a lover, or for any number of other accepted reasons. We are told that our feelings must be in response to events that are happening, or have happened. Often, of course, our feelings “happen ahead of time,” because those feelings are the initial realities from which events flow.

A relative might be ready to die, though no exterior sign has been given. The relative’s feelings might well be mixed, containing portions of relief and sadness, which we might then perceive — but the primary events are subjective.

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It is somewhat of a psychological trick, in our day and age, to come to the realization that we do in fact form our experience and our world, simply because the weight of evidence seems to be so loaded at the other end, because of our habits or perception. The realization is like one that comes at one time or another to many people in the dream state, when suddenly they “awaken” while still in the dream, realizing first of all that they are dreaming, and secondarily that they are themselves creating the experienced drama.

To understand that we create our own reality requires that same kind of “awakening” from the normal awake state — at least for many people. Some of course have this knack more than others. The realization itself does indeed change “the rules of the game” as far as we are concerned to a rather considerable degree.

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As long as we believe that either good events or bad ones are meted out by a personified God as the reward or punishment for our actions, or on the other hand that events are largely meaningless, chaotic, subjective knots in the tangled web of an accidental Darwinian world, then we cannot consciously understand our own creativity, or play the role in the universe that we are capable of playing as individuals or as a species. We will instead live in a world where events happen to us, in which we must do sacrifice to the gods of one kind or another, or see ourselves as victims of an uncaring nature.

While still preserving the integrity of physical events as we understand them, [each of] us must alter the focus of our attention to some extent, so that we begin to perceive the connections between our subjective reality at any given time, and those events that we perceive at any given time. We are the initiator of those events.

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This recognition does indeed involve a new performance on the part of our own consciousness, a mental and imaginative leap that gives us control and direction over achievements that we have always performed, though without our conscious awareness.

Early man had such an identification of subjective and objective realities. As a species, however, we have developed what can almost be called a secondary nature — a world of technology in which we also now have our existence, and complicated social structures have emerged from it. To develop that kind of structure necessitated a division between subjective and objective worlds. Now, however, it is important that we realize our position, and accomplish the manipulation of consciousness that will allow us to take true conscious responsibility for our actions and our experience.

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We can “come awake” from our normal waking state, and that is the natural next step for consciousness to follow — one for which our biology has already equipped us. Indeed, each person does attain that recognition now and then. It brings triumphs and challenges as well. In those areas where we are not, remind ourselves that we are involved in a learning process; we are daring enough to accept the responsibility for our actions.

Look clearly, at the ways in which our private world causes our daily experience, and how it merges with the experience of others.

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Because of our individual and joint intuitive understanding and intellectual discrimination, we were able from an early age to clearly perceive the difficulties of our fellows. This helped incite stimuli that made us question the entire framework of our civilization. We are able to do something few people can: leap intuitively and mentally above our own period — to discard intellectually and mentally, and sometimes emotionally, the short-sighted, unfortunate religious scientific, and social beliefs of our fellows.

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Many of those old beliefs still have an emotional hold, however, and some helpful beliefs have also been overdone, or carried on too long. Because we can see so clearly the failings of our age, we each have a tendency to exaggerate them, or rather to concentrate upon them, so that we do not have an emotional feeling of safety. We react by setting up defenses.

We are looking for a state of higher consciousness

A state of higher consciousness that represent a unique and yet universal source of information and revelation. Such a source does exist for each individual, regardless of how it is interpreted. White light is characteristically a symbol in such cases. The vastness.

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In our terms, speaking more or less historically, early man and woman were in a more conscious relationship with Conscious-mind-2 than we are now.

There are many gradations of consciousness, and early man and woman used his or her consciousness in other ways than those we are familiar with. He often perceived what we would call the products of the imagination as sense data, for example, more or less objectified in the physical world.

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The imagination has always dealt with creativity, and as man and woman began to settle upon a kind of consciousness that dealt with cause and effect, he no longer physically perceived the products of his or her imagination directly in the old manner. He realized in those earlier times that illness, for instance, was initially as much the result of the imagination as health was, for he experienced far more directly the brilliant character of his own imagination. The lines between imaginative and physical experience have blurred for us, and of course they have also become tempered by other beliefs and the experiences that those beliefs the engender.

Very simply here. It is far more complicated — and yet early man, for example, became aware of the fact that no man or woman was injured without that event first being imagined to one extent or another. Therefore, imagined healings were utilized, in which a physical illness was imaginatively cured — and in those days the cures worked.

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Regardless of our histories, those early men and women were quite healthy. They had strong teeth and bones. They dealt with the physical world through the purposeful use of the imagination, however, in a way now most difficult to understand. They realized they were mortal, and must die, but their greater awareness of Conscious-mind-2 allowed them a larger identification, so they understood that death was not only a natural necessity, but also an opportunity for other kinds of experience and development.

They felt their relationship with nature acutely, experiencing it in a far different fashion than we do ours. The felt that it was the larger expression of their own moods and temperament, the materialization of self-events that were too vast to be contained within the flesh of any one individual or any group of individuals. They wondered where their thoughts went after they had them, and they imagined that in one way or another those thoughts turned into the birds and rocks, the animals and trees that were themselves ever-changing.

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They also felt that they were themselves, however; that as humans [they were] the manifestation of the larger expression of nature that was too splendid to be contained alone within nature’s framework, that nature needed them — that is, men and women — to give it another kind of voice. When men and women spoke they spoke for themselves; yet because they felt so a part of the natural environment they spoke for nature also, and for all of its creatures.

Much is not understood in our interpretations. In that world men and women knew that nature was balanced. Both animals and men and women must die. If a man or woman was caught and eaten by animals, as sometimes happened, [his or her fellows] did not begrudge that animal its prey — at least, not in the deepest of terms. And when they slayed other animals themselves and ate the heart, for example, it was not only to obtain the animals’ “stout hearts,” or fearlessness; but also the intent was to preserve those characteristics so that through men’s and women’s experiences each animal would continue to live to some extent.

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Men and women in those times protected themselves against storms, and yet in the same way they did not begrudge the storm its victims. They simply changed the alliances of their consciousnesses from the identification of self-within-the-flesh to self-within-the-storm. Man’s and woman’s and nature’s intents were largely the same, and understood as such. Man and woman did not fear the elements in those early times, as is now supposed.

Some of the experience known by early man and woman would seem quite foreign to us now. Yet in certain forms they come down through the centuries. Early man and woman, perceived himself or herself as oneself, and individual. He or she felt that nature expressed for him or her the vast power of his or her own emotions. He or she projected oneself out into nature, into the heavens, and imagined there were great personified forms that late turned into the gods of Olympus, for example. He or she was also aware of the life-force within nature’s smallest parts, however, and before sense data became so standardized he or she perceived his or her own version of those individualized consciousnesses which must later became the elements, or small spirits. But above all he or she was aware of nature’s source.

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He or she was filled with wonder as his or her own consciousness ever-newly came into being. He or she had not yet covered over that process with the kind of smooth continuity that our own consciousness has now achieved — so when he or she thought a thought he or she was filled with curiosity: Where had it come from? His or her own consciousness, then, was forever a source of delight, it changing qualities as noticeable and apparent as the changing sky. The relative smoothness of our own consciousness — in those terms, a least — was gained at the expense of certain other experiences, therefore, that were possible otherwise. We could not live in our present world of time if our consciousness was as playful, curious, and creative as it was, for [then] time was also experienced far differently.

It may be difficult for us to understand, but the events that we now recognize are as much the result of the realm of the imagination, as those experiences by early man and woman when he or she perceived as real happenings that now we would consider hallucinatory, or purely imaginative.

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It seems quite clear to us that the mass events of nature are completely outside of our domain. We feel we have no part in nature except as we exert control over it through technology, or harm it, again through technology. We grant that the weather has an effect upon our moods, but any deeper psychic or psychological connections between us and the elements strikes most of us as quite impossible.

We use terms like “being flooded by emotion.” However, and other very intuitive statements showing our own deeper recognition of events that quite escape us when we examine them through reason alone. Man and woman actually court’s storms. He or she seeks them out, for emotionally he or she understands quite well their part in his or her own private life, and their necessity of a physical level. Through nature’s manifestations, particularly through its power, man and woman senses nature’s source and his or her own, and knows that the power can carry him or her to emotional realizations that are required for his or her own greater spiritual and psychic development.

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Death is not an end; but a transformation of consciousness. Nature, with its changing seasons, constantly brings us that message. In that light, and with that understanding, nature’s disasters do not claim victims: Nature and man and woman together act out their necessary parts in the larger framework of reality.

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Our concepts about death and nature, however, force us to see man and woman and nature as adversaries, and also program our experience of such events so that they seem to only confirm what we already believe. Each person caught in either an epidemic of a natural disaster will have private reasons for choosing those circumstances. Such conditions also often involve events in which the individual senses a larger identification, however — even sometimes a renewed sense of purpose that makes no sense in ordinary terms.

Getting acquainted with other living members of the family, who are still in time

Many individuals do this, psychologically becoming aware of relatives still living, even though in life they may never meet.

We may feel alone in life if all of our relatives are dead, for example. In the same way, entering life, we often assure ourselves that past friends or relatives are there before us.

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A potpourri. Heredity plays far less a part in the so-called formation of character than is generally supposed

For that matter,[the same is true of] environment, as it is usually understood. Our cultural beliefs predispose us to interpret experience in terms of heredity and environment, however, so that we focus primarily upon them as prime causes of behavior. We do not concentrate upon the exceptions — the children who do not seem to fit the patterns of their families or environments, so of course no attempts are made to view those kinds of unofficial behavior.

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Because of this, large organized patterns behind human activity often escape our notice almost completely. We read constantly of people who seem to have been most affected by fictional characters, for example, or by personalities from the past, or by complete strangers, more than they have been affected by their own families. Such situations are considered oddities.

The human personality is far more open to all kinds of stimuli than is supposed. If information is thought to come to the self only through physical means, then of course heredity and environment must be seen behind human motivation. When we realize that the personality can and does have access to other kinds of information than physical, then you must begin to wonder what effects those data have on the formation of character at birth, and the entire probable intent of their lives exists then as surely as does the probable plan for the adult body they will alter possess.

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Consciousness forms the genes, and not the other way around, and the about-to-be-born infant is the agency that adds new material through the chromosomal structure. The child is from birth far more aware of all kinds of physical events than is realized also. But beside that, the child uses the early years to explore — particularly in the dream state — other kinds of material that suit its own fancies and intents, and it constantly receives a stream of information that is not at all dependent upon its heredity or environment.

On these other levels the child knows, for example, of its contemporaries born at about the same time. Each person’s “individual” life plan fits in somewhere with that of his or her contemporaries. Those plans are communicated one to the other, and probabilities instantly are set into motion in Conscious-mind-2. To some degree or another calculations are made so that, for instance, individual A will meet individual B at a marketplace 30 years later — if this fits with the intents of both parties. There will be certain cornerstone encounters in each person’s life that are set up as strong probabilities, or as plans to be grown into.

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There are bodies of events, then, that in a certain fashion we will materialize almost in the same way that we will materialize our own adult body from the structure of the fetus. In those terms the body works with physical properties — though again these properties, as discussed often, have their own consciousness and realities.

Our mental life deals with psychological events, obviously, but beneath so-called normal awareness the child grows toward the mental body of events that will compose his or her life. Those unique intents that characterize each individual exist in Conscious-mind-2, then — and with birth, those intents immediately begin to impress the physical world of Conscious-mind-1.

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Each child’s birth changes the world, obviously, for it sets up an instant psychological momentum that begins to affect action in Conscious-mind-1 and Conscious-mind-2 alike.

A child many be born with a strong talent for music, for example. Say the child is unusually gifted. Before he or she is old enough to begin any kind of training, he will know on other levels the probable direction that music will take during his lifetime. He or she will be acquainted in the dream state with other young budding musicians, though they are infants also. Again, probabilities will be set into motion, so that each child’s intent reaches out. There is great flexibility, however, and according to individual purposes many such children will also be acquainted with music of the past. To one extent or another this applies to every field of endeavor as each person adds to the world scene, and as the intents of each individual, added to those of each other person alive, multiply — so that the fulfillment of the individual results in the accomplishments of our world. And the lack of fulfillment of course produces those lacks that are also so apparent.

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Some readers have brothers or sisters, or both. Others are only children. Our Ideas of individuality hamper us to a large extent. To one extent or another, again, each portion of consciousness, while itself, contains [the] potentials of all consciousness. Our private information about the world is not nearly as private as we suppose, therefore, for behind the experience of any one event, each of us possesses information pertaining to other dimensions of that event that we do not ordinarily perceive.

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If we are involved in any kind of mass happening, from a concert to an avalanche, we are aware on other levels of all of the actions leading to that specific participation. If buildings are constructed of bricks quite visible, so mass events are formed by many small invisible happenings — each, however, fitting together quite precisely in a kind of psychological masonry in which each of us has a mental hand. This applies to mass conversions and to natural disasters alike.

 

The unconscious is an invisible version of the physical universe

On the other hand, however, it is far more than that, for it contains within it probable variations of that universe — from the most cosmic scale, say, down to probable versions of the most minute events of any given physical day.

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In simple terms, our body has an invisible counterpart in Conscious-mind-2. During life that counterpart is to connected with our own physical tissues, however, that it can be misleading to say that the two — the visible and invisible bodies — are separate. In the same way that our thoughts have a reality in Conscious-mind-2, and only for the sake of a meaningful analogy, thoughts could be said to be equivalent, now, of objects; for in Conscious-mind-2 thoughts and feelings are far more important even than objects are in physical reality.

In Conacious-mind-2 thoughts instantly form patterns. They are the “natural elements” in that psychological environment that mix, merge, and combine to form, if we will, the psychological cells, atoms, and molecules that compose events. In those terms, the physical events that we perceive or experience can be compared to “psychological objects” that appear to exist with a physical concreteness in space and time. Such events usually seem to begin somewhere in space and time, and clearly end there as well.

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We can look at an object like a table and see its definitions in space. To some extent we are too close to psychological events to perceive them in the same fashion, of course, yet usual experience seems to have a starting point and a conclusion. Instead, experienced events usually involve only surface perceptions. We observe a table’s surface as smooth and solid, even though we realize it is composed of atoms and molecules full of motion.

In the same way we experience a birthday party, an automobile accident, a bridge game, or any psychological event as psychologically solid, with a smooth experienced surface that holds together in space and time. Such events, however, consist of indivisible “particles” and faster-than-light perceptions that never show. In other words, they contain psychic components that flow from Conscious-mind-2 into Conscious-mind-1.

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Any event, therefore, has an invisible thickness, a multidimensional basis. Our skies are filled with breezes, currents, clouds, sunlight, dust particles and so forth. The sky vaults above the entire planet. The invisible [vault of] Conscious-mind-2 contains endless patterns that change as, say, clouds do — that mix and merge to form our psychological climate. Thoughts have what we will for now term electromagnetic properties. In those terms our thoughts mix match with others in Conascious-mind-2, creating mass patterns that form the overall psychological basis behind world events. Again, however, Conscious-mind-2 is not neutral, but automatically inclined toward what we will here term good or constructive developments. It is a growth medium: Constructive or “positive” feelings or thoughts are more easily materialized than “negative” ones, because they are in keeping with Conscious-mind-2’s characteristics.

If that were not the case, our own species would not have existed as long as it has. Nor would the constructs of civilization — art, commerce, or even technology — have been possible. Conscious-mind-2 combines order and spontaneity, but its order is of another kind. It is a circular, associative, “naturally ordering process,” in which spontaneity automatically exists in the overall order that will best fulfill the potentials of consciousness.

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At birth, each person is automatically equipped with the capacity toward natural growth that will most completely satisfy its own abilities — not at the expense of others, but in an overall context in which the fulfillment of each individual assures the fulfillment of each other individual.

In those terms there is “an ideal” psychological pattern to which we are oneself intimately connected. The inner ego constantly moves us in that direction. On the other hand, that pattern is not rigid, but flexible enough to take advantage of changing circumstances, even as a plant will turn toward the sun though we move it from room to room while the sunlight varies its directions. The inner ego does not exist in time as we do, however, so it relies upon our assessment of situations with which our reasoning is equipped to cope.

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Obviously there are objects of all sizes, durability, and weight. There are private objects and public ones. There are also “vast psychological objects,” then, sweeping mass events, for example, in which whole countries might be involved. There are also mass natural events of varying degrees, as say, the flooding of large areas. Such events involve psychological configurations on the part of all those involved, so that the inner individual patterns of those lives touched by each such event have in one way of another a common purpose that at the same time serves the overall reality on a natural planetary basis. In order to endure, the planet itself must be involved in constant change and instability. I know it is difficult to comprehend, but every object that we perceive — grass or rock or stone — even ocean waves or clouds — any physical phenomenon — has its own invisible consciousness, its own intent and emotional coloration. Each is also endowed with pattern toward growth and fulfillment — not at the expense of the rest of nature, but to the contrary, so that every other element of nature may also be completed.

At certain levels these intents of man and woman and nature may merge. I am speaking in very simple terms now, and yet those involved in a flood, for example, want the past washed away, or want to be flooded by bursts of vital emotions such as disasters often brings. They want to feel a renewed sense of nature’s power, and often, though devastated, they use the experience to start a new life.

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Those with other intents will find excuses to leave such areas. There will be, perhaps, a chance meeting that will result in a hasty trip. On a hunch someone else might suddenly leave the area to find a new job, or decide to visit a friend in another state. Those whose experiences do not merge with nature’s in that regard will not be part of that mass event. They will act on information that comes to them from Conscious-mind-2. Those who stay also act on the same information, by choosing to participate.

When we enter time and physical life, we are already aware of its conditions. We are biologically and psychologically predisposed to grow within that rich environment, to contribute on all levels to the fulfillment of our species — but more than this, to add our own unique viewpoint and experience to the greater patterns of consciousness of which we are part.

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We are beginning to understand the intimate connections that exist in our physical environment. The psychological connections, however, are far more complicated, so that each individual’s dreams and thoughts interweave with every other person’s, forming ever-changing patterns of desire and intent. Some of these emerge as physical events, and some do not.