Friday, March 8, 2013

Active work

I'm on the train from Hangzhou to Shanghai, after a day trip to a factory, and have had the opportunity to study a few specific questions regarding impressions today.

It may be that one thinks conscious labor and intentional suffering are different things, or actions separated both by character and movement through time, but this isn't the case.

Conscious labor and intentional suffering are actually simultaneous actions. They take place together and in exactly the same moment. Any sequential understanding is ultimately mistaken.

This may be difficult to grasp, and the detailed explanation for it involves technical questions that would take some time to explain. Perhaps one can get the gist of it, however, if one understands that action within the enneagram, the octave, is simultaneous at all points; that is, although the diagram describes what appears to be a progressive function, the functions at every note all take place at once. One of the meanings of the circle is to bind all the action together not only as a single system, but also as a single moment in time. All of the interactions of the notes and their consequent iterated properties take place at once. An ocatve is thus an instant; all of it takes place now. Ibn Arabi (you knew I'd bring him up, didn't you?) explains this at depth in his work, which is far too complex to go into here. I'm simply saying that there are both scientific and metaphysical proofs of the proposition.

This matter can hence be understood technically; or perhaps you might want to understand it practically, using your organic sensation, which is a higher level of proof, and can produce a much deeper level of comprehension. The idea can indeed be comprehended with the mind alone, taken as a philosophical proposition- and it certainly is one, since its implications touch on the nature of the Reality itself, and its manner of expression.

Yet the organic sensation of this work iterates not only the idea, but the living nature of its properties and the manner in which the dharma is perpetually expressed, forever arising and flowing back into itself. This is why Gurdjieff found the two actions, which support one another, so vital- if you want to "know ever more and more about the laws of world-creation and world-maintenance," these two active properties of conscious work, taken together, become a complete instruction unto themselves.

The two actions are a direct function of the conscious experience of impressions, which must take place together as the attention meets the world through all three being-functions (intellect, sensation, and feeling.)

Taking in impressions involves a certain definite effort; feeling this action, a second one. But they are not apart; one begets the other, and the organism creates a self-reinforcing feedback loop that participates, such that feeling is the driving force.

In this case one understands the concept of the horse, the driver, and the carriage quite differently, since one is now the horse, the driver, and the carriage, all of whom represent a vehicle whose destination is now, this instant of life, in which the necessary intelligence, force, and feeling are present enough to suffer the work of living-

That is, to live in such a way that feeling does the work it was supposed to, but generally cannot.

This idea of suffering the work of living through feeling ought to be more actively contemplated.

May your soul be filled with light.

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