Sunday, November 4, 2012

it cannot be dispensed with

 It's an old idea to suggest that we are too much in our heads, that we don't have enough of a connection to the body. Everyone has heard this many times by now. One knows it is true; one knows one must work in this direction. Or, if one doesn't, one is not listening too closely; one is not following the practice.

It's enough. If one uses an idea too much, insists on it to exclusively, the idea wears out. It doesn't get questioned anymore; it just gets hammered at, blunting its value. Every idea in the work can become useless in this way, through dogma, habit, and overuse.

So I need a new idea. And maybe that new idea values thinking differently. It's important to think a lot; to think of very great deal. But that thinking has to be thinking of a concise manner, thinking that serves a higher purpose, thinking that is directed inwardly, towards all of the questions that cause a man or a woman to wish to know themselves.

Thinking, in other words, must become actively linked to an inner work, just as the body and the emotions must be actively linked to that same inner work.

The difficulty isn't with thinking itself. The difficulty is that we don't actually think; almost all of our thoughts are random, not centered around the magnetism and inner gravity that is necessary to organize them in a productive direction.

Thinking could be quite different; it might involve a new sense of the self, such as the one Gurdjieff and Ouspensky discussed.

Real "I," you see, thinks, and thinks quite concisely. It thinks quite concisely because it has an aim; it cares about what happens (unlike most of me,) and it understands that thinking must serve Being, not just stagger around in an associative daze. All of the parts must, ultimately, serve Being; and we cannot exclude this one just because we have had a habitual contempt for it formed in us by a well meant, but in the end misguided, emphasis on seeing how it dominates us.

 It's very important to know how to think. Moments also come when it is important not to think; because each moment has its appropriate response and its appropriate action.  Centers were made differently and interact differently for a reason. But this action must arise organically, not from the manipulative orchestration of some presumed director, which is exactly what false personality constructs in order to take control of one's inner work.

Real "I" is an organic entity related to the formation of the kessdjan, or astral, body. It does not need the help of  false personality to function, and is quite definitely distinct from it, which was exactly what Gurdjieff was discussing in the above link. The sensation of real "I" is related to the formation of this body, and sensation itself — in its organic, not willed, form — is indicative of both the presence of the kessdjan body and its growth in the organism.

 In many senses, from our own level, "freedom" (which, according to al 'Arabi, does not actually exist— and he is quite correct in this) consists of the inhabitation of this organic action arising from the connection between the ordinary body and the astral body, which frees a man, when it is present, from the enslavement by his false personality. It is the first stage in the expression of the will of God, in which will is expressed organically and naturally, according to lawful principles, and not according to ego.

 Freedom, in this case, is a relative principle, so it does exist... relative to where we are, even though all action must in the end emanate from God and ultimately belong to God.

We can enter a state where thinking stops, and experience bliss. This is possible, and even necessary.  The practice is not a foreign one; it's intimate.

Yet thinking, in the end, serves a vital purpose; without it, nothing whatsoever could be exchanged, and community — along with of the understanding of every spiritual path, and all human enterprise itself — could not exist.

So let's have a little respect for thinking here. It cannot be dispensed with.

I respectfully hope you will take good care.

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