Krishnamurti & the Art of Awakening
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Fri, 17 May 2019 #601
Thumb_dm Dan McDermott United States 1393 posts in this forum Offline

Huguette . wrote:
K... but when thought assumes that it can bring about psychological security then it is living in illusion. ... Please use your reason, logic, all your energy to find out.

I see it as obvious that thought can't bring about anything in the psyche except conflict and confusion when it moves without intelligence. And it cannot bring about the "revolution" that K. speaks of as possible, without being 'still'. And as I think that you are saying, this stillness, or non-movement only comes about when thought itself recognizes totally the futility and 'misplacement' of its activity. And it also seems obvious that if it continues to engage in conflict, in confusion, in creating fear and misery, craving and desire, (squandering the energy) and doesn't recognize that it itself is responsible for our 'state of affairs' then it will continue right up until the death of the body. So how does the awareness on the part of thought that it is the 'culprit' here come about? And as a result of that realization, cease to move in the realm of the psyche? Is it through attention and awareness of the self's/thought's own self-centered activities?

This may be all wrong of course

This post was last updated by Dan McDermott Fri, 17 May 2019.

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Fri, 17 May 2019 #602
Thumb_dm Dan McDermott United States 1393 posts in this forum Offline

Huguette . wrote:
It (thought) stops seeking and striving the moment it sees with complete clarity that it is unable to end suffering, desire, fear, attachment, time, self, and so on.

Yes it is certainly "unable"... but does it see that it is "suffering, desire, fear, attachment, time, self, and so on"?

This may be all wrong of course

This post was last updated by Dan McDermott Fri, 17 May 2019.

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Fri, 17 May 2019 #603
Thumb_kinfonet_avatar Clive Elwell New Zealand 5201 posts in this forum Offline

Tom Paine wrote:
If I look at my watch and think, ‘my bus is due in 10 minutes. I better head over to the bus stop.’, this is an example of practical thought. There’s no ‘me’ involved there.

No me involved? But you have used the word "I" twice, and the word "my" :-). What is behind that "I"? Is it a "purely practical matter"? And what does "practical" mean?

Sorry if I am making this too complicated. I see that there is a danger of demonizing the whole of thought, which is an essential tool of mankind - despite the fact it can be a real demon as well, and often is.

I think Dan has it right when he says thought acts in a right manner when it is guided by intelligence (my words). It acts in a wrong manner when it runs on its own program, as Bohm put it. Then of course the question arises, where does this intelligence "come from"?

Is it related to awareness?

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Fri, 17 May 2019 #604
Thumb_kinfonet_avatar Clive Elwell New Zealand 5201 posts in this forum Offline

Tom Paine wrote:
Are you saying that there can be creativity even when using thought....that the two can function together?

I think that creation (and I use that word rather than creativity, which suggests a quality that is mine) only comes from emptiness. From the space when thought is not.

Hmm, I see that in looking at your question I am thinking in terms of what thought MIGHT be, could be. And it feels this is a wrong approach.Only what thought is doing now is important, no?

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Sat, 18 May 2019 #605
Thumb_kinfonet_avatar Clive Elwell New Zealand 5201 posts in this forum Offline

Huguette . wrote:
Thought can understand logic, it can reason, it can see the processes of its sorrow, but it is incapable of doing anything except think and reason, sanely or not. It "refuses" or backs away from the clarity, simplicity and immediacy of the fact that it must do nothing because THERE IS NOTHING THAT IT CAN DO. It refuses it because it is unknown, new, too simple, too immediate. “Doing nothing”, “not deciding what to do” in matters of relationship, IS ACTION. And such action is a completely new approach to life and relationship.

Looking at this these words. In one way it is obvoiusly untrue, there are obviously many things that thought can do, at least with the aid of the hands, the body. It can send a space craft to the far reaches of the solar system, probe intricately into matter, it can start a war, kill, and apparently destroy the planet. Thought enabales me to write on the forum. It can cause intense suffering. It can destroy the health of the body, it can hurt others and be hurt. In fact the world we have created is pretty much the incessant activity of thought, and hence the chaos. You know all this.

So thought, through the body, can do a great deal. But you are saying thought is futile in a certain field, are you not? That it cannot change its own process? That it cannot change the essence of ‘me’. It cannot stop itself. But thought keeps trying to ‘correct’ itself, and that is really the source of all conflict and misery.

And then you (and K) are saying that when it is seen (leaving aside the issue of what sees) its own futilty, then it stops “trying”. And then a whole new dimension opens up. Which must be so, because thought is time, thought is division.

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Sat, 18 May 2019 #606
Thumb_donna_and_jim_fb_bw Tom Paine United States 2712 posts in this forum Offline

Clive Elwell wrote:
No me involved? But you have used the word "I" twice, and the word "my" :-). What is behind that "I"? Is it a "purely practical matter"? And what does "practical" mean?

The ‘I’ simply refers to the physical body and its needs, as I see it. I am using the word ‘me’ to refer to ambition, greed, attachment, desire, and all that we consider to be the self. If I say, ‘I must head to the bus stop now because the bus is due and I must return home to start dinner’, where is the ‘me’/self in that use of thought? (I’m not implying that one is free of the self, but only that the thoughts of the bus schedule don’t come from the self...nor the practical thoughts that help one to cook dinner) To me this is obvious ...it’s a common type of practical ...not psychological....thought. But you’re of course free to question it. K said that “thought is conflict”....a pretty radical statement...but he was obviously not referring to the thought necessary to find one’s way to the bus stop on time, nor the thought necessary to drive one’s car to the supermarket. Thinking “I should be a good Christian”....this is psychological thought, related to the self image...and we can see that it invariably creates inner and/or outer conflict.

Let it Be

This post was last updated by Tom Paine Sat, 18 May 2019.

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Sat, 18 May 2019 #607
Thumb_donna_and_jim_fb_bw Tom Paine United States 2712 posts in this forum Offline

Clive Elwell wrote:
Tom Paine wrote:

Are you saying that there can be creativity even when using thought....that the two can function together?

C: I think that creation (and I use that word rather than creativity, which suggests a quality that is mine) only comes from emptiness. From the space when thought is not.

True, but in Ks talks intelligence, which is creation, is using thought....the two are working together...or so it seems to me.

Let it Be

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Sat, 18 May 2019 #608
Thumb_dm Dan McDermott United States 1393 posts in this forum Offline

I recall Bohm saying that the two are separate but when intelligence is present thought can move parallel to it

This may be all wrong of course

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Sat, 18 May 2019 #609
Thumb_donna_and_jim_fb_bw Tom Paine United States 2712 posts in this forum Offline

Dan McDermott wrote:
And it cannot bring about the "revolution" that K. speaks of as possible, without being 'still'. And as I think that you are saying, this stillness, or non-movement only comes about when thought itself recognizes totally the futility and 'misplacement' of its activity.

Thought certainly cannot bring about the transformation K spoke of. It can do nothing psychologically but create disorder. The disorder of fragmentation...right vs wrong, me vs you, should vs should not, past and future. Seeing how thought inevitably creates disorder ‘inwardly’...as well as outwardly in the world... this movement stops. So is it possible to observe one’s thinking without trying to correct it or shape it? Leaving this question open for exploration.

Let it Be

This post was last updated by Tom Paine Sat, 18 May 2019.

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Sat, 18 May 2019 #610
Thumb_stringio Huguette . Canada 734 posts in this forum Offline

Tom Paine wrote:
So is it possible to observe one’s thinking without trying to correct it or shape it?

The “trying to correct it or shape it” is also one’s thinking, isn’t it? So this too is observed.

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Sat, 18 May 2019 #611
Thumb_donna_and_jim_fb_bw Tom Paine United States 2712 posts in this forum Offline

Huguette . wrote:
The “trying to correct it or shape it” is also one’s thinking, isn’t it? So this too is observed.

Yes, it’s thinking, of course. And we react to this by thinking, ‘I should not try to control’, which is just another attempt to control. So, why is there this constant battle of observer reacting to observed? Why the constant need to shape and control or condemn or correct? The immediate answer that comes to mind is that our parents and teachers taught us right vs wrong, good vs bad, etc. So it’s fear of punishment and hope for reward. But where did it all begin? In consciousness with its fragmentation, obviously.

Let it Be

This post was last updated by Tom Paine Sat, 18 May 2019.

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Sat, 18 May 2019 #612
Thumb_kinfonet_avatar Clive Elwell New Zealand 5201 posts in this forum Offline

Tom Paine wrote:
But you’re of course free to question it.

Thank you. I was going to drop it as it was appearing personal to you, Tom. It's not of course.

Although an action may appear purely practical, what might lie at the root of it? What motives of pleasure, or fear? K said "The self may lie underneath every stone". And I quote from "Tradition and Revolution":

I do not know the cause of my action. They may be obvious causes and other causes which are undiscoverable by the conscious mind. I can see the superficial causes for action, but these superficial causes have very deep roots in the recesses of one's own being.

This is from the chapter "What is it to explore?"

More and more I have a sense that the subconscious mind is always there, acting beneath the surface, directing my actions.

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Sat, 18 May 2019 #613
Thumb_kinfonet_avatar Clive Elwell New Zealand 5201 posts in this forum Offline

Tom Paine wrote:
So is it possible to observe one’s thinking without trying to correct it or shape it? Leaving this question open for exploration.

I feel this is certainly a right question to ask. Any trace, as you say, of trying to correct or shape thought is in antithesis to pure observation. And yet this is our conditioning, to criticise, correct - very strong conditioning indeed.

How we observe is everything.

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Sat, 18 May 2019 #614
Thumb_kinfonet_avatar Clive Elwell New Zealand 5201 posts in this forum Offline

Tom Paine wrote:
So, why is there this constant battle of observer reacting to observed? Why the constant need to shape and control or condemn or correct?

Again, a crucial question.Perhaps we should not attempt to provide an answer, certainly not from the intellect alone. Just observe the process. But as you say, isn't it at least a factor that thought is always fragmented, which means each thought is incomplete? By trying to correct itself, isn't thought trying to achieve wholeness?

This post was last updated by Clive Elwell Sat, 18 May 2019.

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Sat, 18 May 2019 #615
Thumb_donna_and_jim_fb_bw Tom Paine United States 2712 posts in this forum Offline

Clive Elwell wrote:
What motives of pleasure, or fear?

I may be mistaken, but I think you’re not understanding my point. Probably it’s not important to pursue, since the thought that tells me, as I’m driving, that my gas gauge is almost on empty and I need to find a filling station is not a problem. In fact such practical thoughts are a necessity unless we are mentally deficient and have someone to care for us. My point here is that it’s the psychological disorder that needs to be understood, and practical thinking is not a contributing factor to this disorder. So perhaps we can drop this issue of practical vs psychological and keep to the point of the disorder in consciousness.

Let it Be

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Sat, 18 May 2019 #616
Thumb_kinfonet_avatar Clive Elwell New Zealand 5201 posts in this forum Offline

Huguette . wrote: #583
The only thing of importance that I see is “to see that anything that thought touches is not the real”.

I am going back a few days here, Hugette, but this is an issue that is always with me.

I am not basically doubting that thought is not real, not true, but are not some thoughts 'closer to reality' than others? but no, that is not a good way to put it though. Better ask: thought is always a description, but are not some descriptions more accurate than others?

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Sat, 18 May 2019 #617
Thumb_donna_and_jim_fb_bw Tom Paine United States 2712 posts in this forum Offline

Clive Elwell wrote:
Better ask: thought is always a description, but are not some descriptions more accurate than others?

ALL thoughts are an infinite distance from truth, as I see it. No thought can touch the reality/truth of a flower or a tree or a sunset....or a human problem like fear or suffering. Or do you disagree?

Let it Be

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Sat, 18 May 2019 #618
Thumb_stringio Huguette . Canada 734 posts in this forum Offline

Clive Elwell wrote at 612:
More and more I have a sense that the subconscious mind is always there, acting beneath the surface, directing my actions.

I see it that way too, Clive. In observing thought, some thoughts are perfectly clear either as images or as words. And there are many other thoughts which are barely audible to the mind’s “ear” or visible to the mind’s “eye”. Then there are “thoughts” which the mind can barely perceive, vague disturbances or sensations. I understand all of this to be psychological movement at various depths of consciousness. So sometimes, there is or seems to be a clear link between thought and action and at other times, not.

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Sun, 19 May 2019 #619
Thumb_stringio Huguette . Canada 734 posts in this forum Offline

Clive Elwell wrote at 616:
...are not some descriptions more accurate than others?

When we talk about the real, aren’t we are talking about the reality that is beyond conclusion, confusion, opinion, idea, theory, belief, beyond every form of thought, beyond consciousness, beyond sorrow and time, beyond desire and self? Aren’t we talking about God, intelligence, love, the uncreated or the ground? That is my understanding of the word "reality" in this context.

So thought has the ability to describe our psychological processes or mechanisms; the mind can understand its own disorder. But that is as accurate as thought can be with descriptions, isn’t it? This does not end sorrow, does it? This doesn't free the mind from the confines of consciousness. Isn’t “reality” beyond consciousness and thought?

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Sun, 19 May 2019 #620
Thumb_donna_and_jim_fb_bw Tom Paine United States 2712 posts in this forum Offline

Clive Elwell wrote:
Better ask: thought is always a description, but are not some descriptions more accurate than others?

Some photographs of a tree are sharper...more accurate than others....but none are the tree, no matter how accurate. It’s impossible to understand the truth of something living (a bird, a flower, a child, myself) with thought, so no thought can really be called ‘accurate’. That’s how I see it, for what it’s worth.

Let it Be

This post was last updated by Tom Paine Sun, 19 May 2019.

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Sun, 19 May 2019 #621
Thumb_stringio Huguette . Canada 734 posts in this forum Offline

Tom Paine wrote:
Some photographs of a tree are sharper...more accurate than others....but none are the tree, no matter how accurate. It’s impossible to understand the truth of something living (a bird, a flower, a child, myself) with thought, so no thought can really be called ‘accurate’.

You make a good point, Tom. Still I think there’s more to this question of whether descriptions can be more or less accurate.

There are descriptions through which it is impossible for the listener to understand at all what lies beneath the words. It is understood that the description is never the thing, but the description must be an intelligible pointer. Where speaker and listener both understand the actuality that is being described, then there is communication or communion as K called it.

But there can be no description of “reality” as I understand it to be used by K when he says that “that anything that thought touches is not the real”. Description is thought. It is “something that thought touches”, isn’t it? And the real cannot be described, neither accurately nor inaccurately. That is thought’s limitation, isn’t it?

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Sun, 19 May 2019 #622
Thumb_donna_and_jim_fb_bw Tom Paine United States 2712 posts in this forum Offline

Clive Elwell wrote:
Tom Paine wrote:

So, why is there this constant battle of observer reacting to observed? Why the constant need to shape and control or condemn or correct?

C: isn't it at least a factor that thought is always fragmented, which means each thought is incomplete? By trying to correct itself, isn't thought trying to achieve wholeness?

Not sure about that, Clive. By trying to correct or control itself, thought is protecting one from imagined punishment or pain...loss...or is seeking some kind of psychological security or homeostasis. Thought is memory/past trying to take control...to steer the ship we feel we’re piloting...me and my life. But memory is never whole. Memory is always divided from the present moment...’the real’...truth. My memory of you is not the real you, though many of us consider them to be the same. I may be mistaken with some of this ...I’ll have to look further at your question.

Let it Be

This post was last updated by Tom Paine Sun, 19 May 2019.

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Sun, 19 May 2019 #623
Thumb_donna_and_jim_fb_bw Tom Paine United States 2712 posts in this forum Offline

Huguette . wrote:
There are descriptions through which it is impossible for the listener to understand at all what lies beneath the words. It is understood that the description is never the thing, but the description must be an intelligible pointer.

Is this what you’re getting at, Huguette? Let’s say that I ask the question, ‘why do we suffer?’. A Christian may say that it’s simply because we’ve sinned...or we’re sinners. Buddha would give a different answer, as would a Hindu, as would K.

Let it Be

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Sun, 19 May 2019 #624
Thumb_stringio Huguette . Canada 734 posts in this forum Offline

No that’s not what I meant, Tom. Let’s take (if I may) your example of photographs at #620. To me, your words clarify what lies beneath the example. It makes something clear about thought, I think - not only that words can be used accurately to convey a fact, but that both the speaker and listener can understand each other beyond words. What makes the pointer intelligible to both speaker and listener is attention.

Similarly, a child who feels that his parents are favouring a sibling can understand through the Jesus parable of the shepherd and the lost sheep (for example) that “the lost sheep”, the sibling, needs special help. The child can understand if he is attentive.

What I meant is that there is an actuality, a fact, a fundamental truth or reality that can in no way be conveyed through words, even if there is attention. What reveals that truth can only be direct perception, not religious canon, not sermons, not authority.

Love and compassion too cannot be revealed or made intelligible through words. It must be experienced directly.

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Sun, 19 May 2019 #625
Thumb_donna_and_jim_fb_bw Tom Paine United States 2712 posts in this forum Offline

Huguette . wrote:
What I meant is that there is an actuality, a fact, a fundamental truth or reality that can in no way be conveyed through words, even if there is attention. What reveals that truth can only be direct perception, not religious canon, not sermons, not authority.

Yes...truth...the timeless...’the real’ cannot be described. And it’s pointless to think about that which is beyond thought...or discuss it. But we can talk about the mess mankind finds itself in. And look into the causes of that mess.

Let it Be

This post was last updated by Tom Paine Sun, 19 May 2019.

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Sun, 19 May 2019 #626
Thumb_kinfonet_avatar Clive Elwell New Zealand 5201 posts in this forum Offline

Huguette . wrote:

What I meant is that there is an actuality, a fact, a fundamental truth or reality that can in no way be conveyed through words, even if there is attention.

When I said

I am not basically doubting that thought is not real, not true, but are not some thoughts 'closer to reality' than others? but no, that is not a good way to put it though. Better ask: thought is always a description, but are not some descriptions more accurate than others?

I was using the word "reality" in a particular way,in a way quite different from how you are using it here, Huguette. Sorry, but such is the word. I was meaning 'how things actually are', and in particular how the mind is, its structure, its conditioning, how it behaves. We spend a lot of time on this forum discussing this, and we find a certain amount of common ground, because the mind does behave in particular ways, in predictable ways, and each of us can observe this in ourselves.

The mind, thought, is like a machine, it is mechanical, and so it can be described, like any machine; one can attempt to describe how it works, in terms of cause and effect. But some descriptions can be 'better', more accurate, more refined, than others. Some descriptions may be downright false (as those involving concepts of god, religious beliefs).

Do these descriptions, this 'model making', serve a useful purpose? As you say, Huguette, they play a part in communicating with each other, discussing together. And including perhaps communicating to oneself. But descriptions, all descriptions, are not direct observation, although they may stem from direct observation, no? We all see, I think, they are not 'the real thing'.

Do descriptions, concepts, help in 'understanding' the mind? I think this is doubtful. The mind IS a mass of concepts, of ideas, of descriptions, is it not? As you say, Huguette, concepts do not free the mind. - in fact don't they add to the mind?

There is a feeling that the more one proceeds with descriptions, the more lost one becomes.

This post was last updated by Clive Elwell Sun, 19 May 2019.

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Sun, 19 May 2019 #627
Thumb_kinfonet_avatar Clive Elwell New Zealand 5201 posts in this forum Offline

Tom Paine wrote:
Not sure about that, Clive. By trying to correct or control itself, thought is protecting one from imagined punishment or pain...loss...or is seeking some kind of psychological security or homeostasis.

Yes. I was not suggesting that the mind can ever be successful in its attempt at wholeness. And the mind has many motives for its actions. Mostly it is trying to defend something that is not even real.

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Mon, 20 May 2019 #628
Thumb_donna_and_jim_fb_bw Tom Paine United States 2712 posts in this forum Offline

Clive Elwell wrote:
Yes. I was not suggesting that the mind can ever be successful in its attempt at wholeness.

I was questioning whether it is even interested is doing that...or is only interested in a particular fragment....IS a particular fragment?

And the mind has many motives for its actions. Mostly it is trying to defend something that is not even real.

Can you elaborate, Clive? Defense of the self image....is that what you mean? Someone calls me an idiot or says Jews are inferior. If I’m Jewish that’s an insult to my self image. Is that what you’re pointing to?

Let it Be

This post was last updated by Tom Paine Mon, 20 May 2019.

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Mon, 20 May 2019 #629
Thumb_donna_and_jim_fb_bw Tom Paine United States 2712 posts in this forum Offline

Clive Elwell wrote:
Do descriptions, concepts, help in 'understanding' the mind? I think this is doubtful. The mind IS a mass of concepts, of ideas, of descriptions, is it not? As you say, Huguette, concepts do not free the mind. - in fact don't they add to the mind?

Since we’ve been discussing this issue of the accuracy or inaccuracy of descriptions I’ll share this one from K that appeared under the QOTD today. I think it might help clarify this issue. At least I hope so...

Public Talk 21st December, 1947 | Madras, India

K: What is thinking, what is the process of thinking? As we know it, it is a response to memory, is it not? You have certain memories and they leave certain marks and to this residue you respond. Memory thus is accumulation of the residue of experience. So, thinking, which is the response to memory, is always conditioned and as we know, that is the actual fact, our daily existence. That is, you have an experience and you translate that experience according to previous memories and so the experience, which has been translated, is gathered as memory and according to that memory you respond and this is called thinking. Surely such thinking only strengthens conditioning, which only produces more conflict, more pain and more sorrow.

That is, memory is constantly responding to the residue of experience which we call memory. It is responding to a challenge and this challenge and response to memory we call thinking, because life is a series of challenges and responses and the response is always conditioned by memory and that response to memory we call thinking. But the challenge is always new, it is never the old and our thinking is always old because it is the response of the past. So, believing is not thinking, believing is only conditioned thinking and conditioned experience - I am using the ordinary word conditioning and not the technical one. If you believe in something, you experience it and your experience is conditioned because it is based on a belief which is also conditioned. So belief is not thinking at all, it is only a response to a memory. So, that is what we are doing in our daily life if we examine ourselves. You have the experience which leaves a residue which is memory and according to that memory you think, and that response which we call thinking is always conditioned because belief is always conditioned memory.

Let it Be

This post was last updated by Tom Paine Mon, 20 May 2019.

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Mon, 20 May 2019 #630
Thumb_kinfonet_avatar Clive Elwell New Zealand 5201 posts in this forum Offline

Tom Paine wrote:
I was questioning whether it is even interested is doing that...or is only interested in a particular fragment....IS a particular fragment?

it is always a fragment, yes. Never complete, never whole. I am always a fragment, never whole. If this was seen throughout the world, it would be a different world, would it not?

Clive: And the mind has many motives for its actions. Mostly it is trying to defend something that is not even real.

Can you elaborate, Clive? Defense of the self image....is that what you mean?

I must confess the words are K's originally. But surely that is what is meant, as you say. Defense of an image, of a belief, of a conclusion, assumption.

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