Posts Tagged ‘Philosophy’

Being the great change (and the language of grace)

March 23, 2012

Being the great change:

The Great Comet of 2011
The Great Comet of 2011 (Photo credit: lrargerich)

Could you ever be how you should not be?

Many place themselves outside of their world, outside of their life, and in opposition to their life and their world. That way of identifying is conflict and suffering.

Here is how it happens. We learn words. That is when things get confusing.

The confusion or problem is not in life, but in the words. There is no such thing as a problem until someone says so.

A problem is something that (allegedly) should not be how it is. Problems are created by the concept that something should be other than it is.


Confusion (Photo credit: Kaleenxian)

As long as something should be how it is not, that is a problem- not the thing itself, but the perception that it should be how it isn’t. It is how it is. That isn’t a problem in itself, but we can make “it is how it is” into a cause for confusion, conflict, and suffering, simply with the use of words.

“Here is how it should be” is declared by words for a reason. The reason to declare “here is how it should be” is to hide how it is.

When one is operating from the concept of “here is how it should be,” then anything that is not how it should be is how it should not be. The concept of “how it should be” creates the possibility of “how it should not be.”

We may try to ignore how it should not be. We may violently oppose how it should not be. However, as long as there is a way how it should be, how it is may not fit how it should be, and clearly that is how it should not be.

How it should be is the source of how it should not be, such as “that traffic light should be green, not red. The one facing me should be green, not that one facing the other direction. Wait, I cannot tell which traffic signal is facing me. I should be able to tell. I should not be unable to tell. I should not be confused. This is wrong. Something must be wrong. It cannot be me. It must be someone else. Wow, this really should not be so confusing!”

Confusing signal

Confusing signal (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

So, those who worship “how it should be” live in opposition to or even denial of how it simply is, then fear that “how it simply is” may be recognized as “other than how it should be, ” then, upon recognition that how it is may not be how it should be, anger arises. How it should be is how it should be! How it should not be is how it should not be!

Various versions of “how it should (not) be” manifest across the various times and places and language patterns. The frightened anger over the gap between how it is and how it should be is what leads to worry and war. Agruments start over which way it should be and how to fix it.

Frustration and exhaustion and blame all are branches of the concept of how it should be. The question may arise as to “who is to blame for the gap between how it should be and how it obviously is?” The urgent question may arise as to “how can we fix how it is and make how it is conform with the whatever particular version of how it should be?” The desperate question may arise of “how can we save our children from the gap between how it should be (which is allegedly very important) and how it is (which is allegedly only important secondarily)?”

Now, how is it that “how it should be” is used to hide how it is? By promoting “how it should be,” that automatically creates “how it should not be.” When “how it should not be” is worshiped as more important than how it is, how it is must be rejected as confusing. How it is must be experienced as a problem, as the cause of suffering. How it is must be fixed.

However, what if “how it is” is never the cause of suffering? What if suffering is just one way of relating to “how it is,” particularly relating to how it is as less important than a linguistic belief (idolatry) that we label “how it should be?” If it were not for the arrogant, vain worship of “how it should be,” then “how it is” would never have been labeled “how it should not be” as in “the problem” as in “the cause of suffering.” In other words, idolatrous morality (AKA shame) is the cause of suffering.

To the one worshiping the existence of sin and shame and so on, what must be fixed is one’s own self. When one identifies any aspect of one’s own self as how one should not be, that self-rejecting projects a “psychological shadow” at the world (at life).

Since one obviously must not be how one should not be, the world out there must be the domain of how it should not be. Clearly, over here is the domain of how it should be: just ask me! Over there, though, that is the domain of how it should not be: again, just ask ANYONE!

Words have a power all their own

Words have a power all their own (Photo credit: waɪ.tiː)

Then along comes some sages who say RIDICULOUS things like this: “I did not come to judge the world. I came to take away sin…. Do not remove the speck from the other’s perception, but the beam from your own.” Obviously, these folks are asking for trouble!

On the other hand, these folks seem not to be at all troubled- not by their world or anyone in it or their own past or present or future. How come they are not troubled like everyone else? Confusing, wasn’t it?

Be the great change. Do not make great changes to fix the world into how it should be. Simply notice the changing of the world, your world, your life, your self.

Reclaim what you used to call “over there” as you, even the language of “how it should be” which may be used to hide how it is. If you play a little hide and seek with yourself, so be it. If you pretend to be confused, so be it. If you pretend to be something other than the Great Change itself, so be it. If you pretend that there is a gap between how it should be and how it is, that is one way that you could be about how your life may be. A very serious problem, wasn’t it?

Published on: Dec 24, 2009

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spirit of clarity or divisiveness

January 17, 2012

Image by sirwiseowl via Flickr

What color shirt do you have on? Are you absolutely sure?

In other words, would you argue about it? Would you ask someone else’s opinion of it, or can you directly determine it for yourself?
Beware of those who would argue in animosity. Their animosity may reveal that they are not speaking from their heart, from direct experience, from the spirit of clarity. Perhaps they are repeating something from another source without an understanding of the thing they are repeating. Perhaps they are clinging to a particular interpretation without recognizing it as an interpretation. They may be like someone who argues about the color of a shirt rather than looking at the shirt and seeing what color it is.
They may speak of what color the shirt should be or must be or cannot ever be. They are full of talk and may be avoiding looking at the shirt with all of their talking.
Many people may use the word truth, but do they even know what truth means? Truth is not just the word true (as in accurate), but the word truth… as in the actuality distinct from a label in language for the actuality.
Some may repeat the word truth like a little child mimicking a sound, but it is like copying a foreign language to them, like singing a song of sounds that might as well be nonsense. They may use the word, but listen to how they use it and it is obvious whether they know what it means or not.
Now, why would someone argue? Is that a sign of clarity and confidence or of ignorance and defensiveness? From ignorance, one may seek to communicate with others with an attraction to identifying an expert who knows from direct experience, an expert who neither argues nor validates a particular interpretation or label as having some monopoly on the absolute truth.
A label is not the thing that the label is used to label. An interpretation cannot be the absolute truth. Words are all interpretations. Those who are anxious about words have been hypnotized by words and prefer words about truth over truth itself. They may defend ignorance with argumentativeness and accusations, but does the one who knows what color a shirt is have any distress about the issue, any contempt, any anxiety?
Why would someone prefer words about truth over truth itself? Could they fear that they would be ashamed if they were to confront truth? So, they may argue about words as a way of hiding from their shame, their condemnation,
their judgment that they should not be however they are.
If they fear many labels, then they may cling to a particular label. If they fear the absence of labels, they may cling to some label and then worship it. That is idolatry. It is very common. It is a normal developmental stage in relation to an awareness of the functioning of language, of symbolic labels, and of interpretations.
We may have trained in some ways how we should be as well as in several ways that we should not be. That training is not an inherent truth. It is normal and useful to have such training, but the training is specific to a context in which that pattern of training formed and persisted.
We may have been trained in language about how we should be and how we should not be. Some may argue about the language of what should be or should not be. That is in accord with their training.
Others may actively seek the opinions of others about what should be or should not be. That is the stage of experimenting with new ways of thinking and speaking. Soon, one may actively seek the opinion of others about how one should be or should not be. That is the stage of exploring alternatives to any original training about how one should be or should not be, at which time questioning the authority of those speaking was not part of a child’s or subordinate’s process.
Consider a new employee in an old business. It is normal and functional to ask about what should be and what should not be. It is even normal and functional to ask about how should I be and how should I not be.
However, there is also a stage at which one is very clear that labels in language about “should” are all interpretations, not truth. Truth is not the realm of what should be or what should not be, which is just a matter of training. Truth is the realm of what is.
Recall that there is a very simple answer as to the color of a shirt. Recall that there is a very simple process as to determining it’s color.
Further, notice that there could be a very simply answer as to what I am. There could even be a very simple process as to determining what that answer is.
One who knows the answer may not be so interested in words about it. Arguing about it would not interest them. Other people’s interpretations might be, to that one, just the business of those other people.
What would be the fruits or signs of such a clarity? Playfulness might be one, but it may be enough to say that in the presence of that clarity, there is no shaming.
If one who is arguing is actually seeking to identify one who is beyond shaming and arguing, offering to argue would be one way to test for a response of counter-arguing. If who seeks to identify one beyond shame, offering shame would be one way to test for a response of counter-shaming.
Beware of those who would argue in animosity. Beware of those who worship shame.
Do not try to change the color of someone else’s shirt before you know how to determine the color of your own shirt. Do not try to persuade others about truth until direct experience is present of what you are, not as a label in language, but as truth.

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