Friday, April 10, 2015

The wrong in myself

This essay is illustrated with a 
photograph of an Apsara from Angkor Wat, Cambodia.

Only to the extent that I know the wrong in myself can I stand against any wrong in the world.

 In the imagination, I know what is wrong; and I know what ought to be done about it. But this is always a selfish view, and it is about what I think is wrong, and what I think ought be done. I don't see that I'm not always right about some things, even if my track record is a good one; and it is only through examining myself and the way that I am that I can begin to see any of this more clearly.

Just thinking about myself is not enough. I need to examine myself with all of my conscious faculties, that is to say, I need to examine myself through the sensation of my body, and the experience/sensation of my feeling. Only when these two parts begin to participate with my intelligence is there a real, tripartite intelligence active in me.

It's only then that I can begin to discriminate; and even then, there is much work to be done, because wrong hides itself quite well. That is one of its characteristic abilities, the ability to be sly.

In the end, if I see what is sly and wrong and myself, then I know what sly things and wrong things look like. I can only understand them personally, from within, intimately; when I try to understand them through outside people first, I am continually deceived and mistaken, and my judgment is bad. I have to develop an inner capacity for knowing the wrong in myself in order to be more sensitive to where it lies in anyone else.

The same thing goes for situations. If I can see myself in situations, and I understand what is wrong about my Being—and only then my action, my behavior, which both emanate from Being alone — then I begin to understand what is wrong about external situations.

The likelihood is that I can't fix anything. But at least I can see what things are. And if it stays one harmful action in me, that is for the good.

Even one harmful action stayed is better than none; and if that's the best I can achieve in a single day, at least it is something, no matter how small and pathetic it may seem to be.


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