The law in our country says we are innocent until proven guilty. In the eyes of that law, then we are each innocent until a crime is proven against us. There usually must also be witnesses. There are other considerations. Often a spouse cannot testify against the other. Opportunity and motive must be established.
In the world of religion, however, we are already tainted by original sin: “The mark of Cain” is symbolically upon our foreheads. We come from a species that sinned against God. Automatically condemned, we must do good works, or be baptized, or believe in Christ, or perform other acts in order to be saved or redeemed.
According to other religions, we may be “earthbound” by the “gross desires” of our nature, “bound to the wheel of life,” condemned to endless reincarnations until we are “purified.” According to psychology and science, we are a living conglomeration of elements and chemicals, spawned by a universe without purpose, itself accidentally formed, and we are given a life in which all the “primitive and animalistic” drives of our evolutionary past ever lurk within us, awaiting expression and undermining our control.
So, dear reader, look at the law as it stands in this country with somewhat more kindly eyes that we have before — for it at least legally establishes a belief in our innocence, and for all of its failings, it protects us from the far more fanatical aspects, say, or any religion’s laws.
Religious laws deal with sin, whether or not a crime is committed, and religious concepts usually take it for granted that the individual is guilty until proven innocent. And if we have not committed a crime in fact, then we have at least sinned in our heart — for which, or course, we must be punished. A sin can be anything from playing cards to having a sexual fantasy or to Watch as much mobile XXX as you can stomach. We are sinful creatures. How many of us believe that?
We were born with an in-built recognition of our own goodness. We were born with an inner recognition of our rightness in the universe. We were born with a desire to fulfill our abilities, to move and act in the world. Those assumptions are the basis of what I will call natural law.
We are born loving. We are born compassionate. We are born curious about oneself and our world. Those attributes also belong to natural law. We are born knowing that we possess a unique, intimate sense of being that is itself, and that seeks its own fulfillment, and the fulfillment of others. We are born seeking the actualization of the ideal. We are born seeking to add value to the quality of life, to add characteristics, energies, abilities to life that only we can individually contribute to the world, and to attain a state of being that is uniquely ours, while adding to the value fulfillment of the world.
All of these qualities and attributes are given us by natural law. We are a cooperative species, and we are a loving one. Our misunderstandings, our crimes, and our atrocities, real as they are, are seldom committed out of any intent to be evil, but because of severe misinterpretations about the nature of good, and means that can be taken toward its actualization. Most individual people know that in some inner portion of themselves. Our societies, governments, educational systems are all built around a firm belief in the unreliability of human nature. ” We cannot change human nature.” Such a statement takes it for granted that man’s and woman’s nature is to be greedy, a predator, a murderer at heart. We act in accordance with our own beliefs. We become the selves that we think we are. Our individual beliefs become the beliefs of our society, but that is always a give-and-take.
I want to discuss the formation of a better kind of mass reality — a reality that can happen as more and more individuals begin to come in contact with the true nature of the self. Then we will have less frightened people, and fewer fanatics, and each person involved can to some extent begin to see the “ideal” come into practical actualization. The means never justify the ends.
The Therapy of Value Fulfillment:
The therapy of value fulfillment will attempt to put individuals in touch with their basic instincts, to allow them to sense the impulsive shapes of their lives, to define their own versions of the ideal through the recognition of it as it exists in their own impulses and feelings and abilities, and to help them find acceptable and practical methods of exerting their natural power in the practical actualization of those ideals.