Contempt: the pinnacle of all mental illness or ill will or sin

Contempt: the pinnacle of all mental illness or ill will or sin

What is the connection between rage, madness, mental illness, contempt, and ill will? First, what is contempt?

English: Photo of Jonathan G. Meath portraying...

English: Photo of Jonathan G. Meath portraying Santa Claus. Date approximate. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Contempt is projected shame. When I am afraid to admit that I did not do something that I say “I should have done,” then there is nothing I can do to change the fact that I did not do whatever I did not do. If I condemn myself with some kind of idea that “I should have done something else,” there is no relief from that idea except for the release of that idea.

When I believe that I should have done something else but then do not want to experience the distress of facing my own self-condemnation, I may respond to any perceived threat by projecting that “should be different” accusation on to others in contempt. It is similar to blaming someone for a result that I experienced, except that blame may be “deserved,” as in “you did not tightly close the door behind you and now look what has happened!”

Contempt, like shame, cannot be easily balanced by future action. The labeling of something as “that should have never happened” is too intense to be balanced by any future action. The labeling itself either will persist or will be questioned and relax.

“Those people systematically use coercion against innocent civilians! It’s an outrage! We cannot stand by and let that happen. We need to seize the associates of those people and hold them hostage and threaten to kill them if those other people do not stop terrorizing innocent civilians.”

It’s ironic, huh? I’m not even condemning or shaming contempt, by the way, but I am noting the dangerous addictiveness of it. It is certainly something to be wary of.

Jiddu Krishnamurti (1895-1986)

I was already exploring subjects like this (see my recent blogs) when someone recently asked me about a famous fellow named Jiddu Krishnamurti. I am familiar with him and yes I do “believe in” the kind of things that he promoted: introspection and personal responsibility as being subjects that are potentially economical (practically valuable, worthy of time and resources).

I also am clear how ridiculously strange it is that a movie like Zeitgeist would take quotes and clips of him talking about inner revolutions in language, psychology, and spirituality and then use that content to promote contempt and hysteria against “the system” or against any society or social tradition. Jiddu Krishnamurti called many social traditions silly, like I might say about literalists worshiping Santa Claus, but that kind of dismissal is not full of contempt and political rage. For a person who clearly spoke out against ill will and contempt and political rage and other mental illness such as shame to be used in the promoting of those same patterns is quite ironic, quite tragic, and yet also quite comic.

He was not saying that Santa must be defeated but that “hey by now we realize that there is no Santa except as a playful myth or game for influencing the behavior of naive children, so lets just move on rather than agonize about Santa and how to save the world from Santa or save the world for Santa.” His passionate dismissal of literalism is to contrast an alternative to literalism, not to start a new Holy Roman Imperial military inquisition crusade to politically and economically destroy the literalists. He had compassion for all people -even those that we might call fanatic literalists – while also having a clear appreciation of the risk of the addictive error or sin of literalism as a practice.

Annie Besant arrives in Charing Cross Station,...

Annie Besant arrives in Charing Cross Station, London with Jiddu Krishnamurti, his younger brother Nityananda, and George Arundale, prominent Theosophist and tutor to the boys. (Picture and caption appear on page 84 of Krishanmurti: The Years of Awakening by Mary Lutyens) (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

He staunchly rebuked fanaticism and contempt. They go together. Contempt is something of personal fanaticism to vilify some perceived threat. Those who are not in a panic of desperately and hysterically clinging to some idolatrous sacred principle will never manifest a personal contempt. The contempt is like a fruit which shows the type of tree, or a symptom that indicates the spiritual momentum or karma of a desperate, panicked, hysterical clinging to some form of innocent sincere but entirely inaccurate fanatical literalism.

Confusion indicates a false presumption. To confuse one thing for something else, but not yet know the source of the interpretative mistake is confusion.

Frustration indicates the same: a mistaken literalism, a hysterical attachment to a particular interpretation or label. Blame and jealousy and contempt are all totally predictable forms of spiritual distress or hysterical sin that arise from an innocent idolatry of fanatical literalism.

What kind of statement indicates confusion? “I think that something is WRONG here.”

Only when “something is wrong” (the indicator of a confusion- typically a frustrating confusion), is there any relevance to project one’s own frightened guilt on to the villain to blame for “making my totally accurate presumptions suddenly no longer consistent with reality.” Well, maybe those presumptions are not totally accurate after all. Maybe my linguistic labeling should not be given priority over reality. Maybe “what should not be” about reality is not reality ruining reality, but just reality revealing an inaccurate expectation or presumption.

In contrast, those who are clear what god is and how god is related to language and all the other branches of god are free of all false beliefs and free of the psychological fruits of those false beliefs for they have the clarity of direct personal revelation which is faith.

Jesus from the Deesis Mosaic

Jesus from the Deesis Mosaic (Photo credit: jakebouma)

Faith does not need other people’s approval. Faith is not frustrated if other people are not interested or not responsive. Faith is not desperately trying to get in to an eternal heaven that is presumed to be elsewhere.

Faith is the fruit of the kingdom of heaven AKA kingdom of god, which are just English translations of ancient metaphors that precede the written recording of the Talmudand Torah and Gitas. One who is clear about the simplicity of the doctrines cannot be confused by imprecise translations or literalists who resist the idea that word are symbols that can be used quite differently over a few hundred or few thousand years.

Biblical Accuracy

Biblical Accuracy (Photo credit: swanksalot)

I was somewhat shocked when I learned what the Hebrew word Israel originally means. I was not shocked to learn that the Hebrew word for divinity (what we translate in to English as god or lord or savior) is the same as the Sanskrit Brahman, as in the inclusive reality which is beyond time (eternal) and locality (omnipresent) and identity (so it is almighty without any conflicting power to threaten it, as in omnipotent).

That many worship a personal savior like Santa Claus is fine. Many Hindus do not know what Brahman means and so anyone who talks to them might conclude that they are all literalist fanatics who all worship a trinity of three gods: the creator father, the sustainer holy spirit, and the destroyer son, plus they have all these different saints and holidays like worshiping Santa Claus and St Patrick and Saint Valentine and yet they claim to be monotheistic. You ask the average Hindu to explain and clearly they are just following some ancient rituals without comprehending the metaphors.

Corcovado jesus

Corcovado jesus (Photo credit: @Doug88888)

It is like trying to learn Christianity from the average Christian who has never studied the Talmud and has no comprehension of Isaiah or Abraham and thus have ridiculous fanaticism about Jesus instead of demonstrating the faith of Jesus and discipline of Jesus and spirit of Jesus. It is all totally predictable. What else could we reasonably expect?

If we experience it over and over and over, then maybe it is a pattern to learn from, rather than just a threat to the desperation and mental ill will that goes with literal fanaticism. Contempt is ill will. Jiddu Krishnamurti spoke about it passionately, but as a warning against it, just like Isaiah and Moses and so many others warned about it passionately.

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