Krishnamurti & the Art of Awakening
A Quiet Space | moderated by Clive Elwell

What is the ‘self’?


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Tue, 12 Feb 2019 #61
Thumb_kinfonet_avatar Clive Elwell New Zealand 5198 posts in this forum Offline

Dan McDermott wrote:
"I don't know"...that is the fact.

And facts are like a beacon, a lighthouse, in this great storm in the ocean of confusion, aren't they?

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Tue, 12 Feb 2019 #62
Thumb_avatar Peter Kesting United States 657 posts in this forum Offline

Hello Dan and all,

I just now noticed that confusion is concern for self. I'm not sure if that is the whole of it.

Peter

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Wed, 13 Feb 2019 #63
Thumb_dm Dan McDermott United States 1389 posts in this forum Offline

Peter Kesting wrote:
I just now noticed that confusion is concern for self.

Yes the self being concerned for what happens or what doesn't happen to itself. And the anxiety of not knowing what will or could happen. "Concern" is desire?

This may be all wrong of course

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Wed, 13 Feb 2019 #64
Thumb_kinfonet_avatar Clive Elwell New Zealand 5198 posts in this forum Offline

Peter Kesting wrote:
I just now noticed that confusion is concern for self.

Yes. Confusion is a very real thing, it is not just an idea to play with. It permeates our life. Another word for confusion is contradiction, isn’t it? And seen in this way, isn’t this phenomena damaging to the brain?

If I can be personal for a while, for some time now confusion has been particularly manifest in me because I have been faced with trying to make major decision. The opportunity seemed to arise for me to leave my present home in NZ and live somewhere else. The “pros and cons” started to reveal themselves. The apparent advanges and disadvantages of each option. Sometimes one aspect seems important, and points towards one choice, while sometimes another aspect becomes dominant, and, perhaps points the other way.

Of course it is the self at work, although sometimes it pretends that it isn’t, it pretends it is considering nobler motives. But the self is never noble, it is fragmented, it is many things, not one thing, as was said in an earlier post. And so it is torn, pulled apart. It is greedy for gain, and fearful for loss.

It is strange how “choice” is given such importance in the world, how it is considered to be a good thing, the more the better. Choice, surely, is painful, although it may promise pleasure. Choice implies regret for the paths not taken, for what one might have missed out on.

So what to do, actually, about making this decision? The feeling that I must make a decision is not quite so strong now, but the affair has certainly exposed the depth of confusion in the mind, the nature of that confusion, and what a slave to self the mind is. Perhaps understanding these things becomes more important than which choice one makes. And after all, it is rather illusory, isn’t it, the notion that one set of circumstances will ‘make me happy’. Unless it changes now, the mind, the self, will be just the same whatever the circumstances. But now I begin to doubt that. Is it true?

Although it is really ‘beyond the point’, I am curious how other people meet the challenge of choice, of making decisions that effect one’s life. Generally, is it that people are somehow able to ‘narrow down’ their life to a particular issue, one major thing, and decide on the basis of that issue only?

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Wed, 13 Feb 2019 #65
Thumb_kinfonet_avatar Clive Elwell New Zealand 5198 posts in this forum Offline

The JKrishnamurti Online daily quote is very relevant here:

Intellect corrupts feeling

You know, there is the intellect, and there is pure feeling—the pure feeling of loving something, of having great, generous emotions. The intellect reasons, calculates, weighs, balances. It asks, “Is it worthwhile? Will it give me benefit?” On the other hand, there is pure feeling—the extraordinary feeling for the sky, for your neighbor, for your wife or husband, for your child, for the world, for the beauty of a tree, and so on. When these two come together, there is death. Do you understand? When pure feeling is corrupted by the intellect, there is mediocrity. That is what most of us are doing. Our lives are mediocre because we are always calculating, asking ourselves whether it is worthwhile, what profit we will get, not only in the world of money, but also in the so-called spiritual world—“If I do this, will I get that?”

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Wed, 13 Feb 2019 #66
Thumb_dm Dan McDermott United States 1389 posts in this forum Offline

Clive Elwell wrote:
The apparent advanges and disadvantages of each option. Sometimes one aspect seems important, and points towards one choice, while sometimes another aspect becomes dominant, and, perhaps points the other way.

Someone I knew Clive put it this way: "See which way the scale tilts".

This may be all wrong of course

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Wed, 13 Feb 2019 #67
Thumb_kinfonet_avatar Clive Elwell New Zealand 5198 posts in this forum Offline

Dan McDermott wrote:
Someone I knew Clive put it this way: "See which way the scale tilts".

This does not seem a satisfactory answer at all, to me.

Firstly, just what is or are "the scale"? is there only one scale? if there was only one, then perhaps there would be no problem, one could weigh the factors against each other, and make a decision. But, for me at least, there are so many scales. Or one could say the scales keep shifting. Because the mind itself keeps shifting, changing. It is ever in flux.

Or perhaps, more importantly, the observer of the scales keeps changing. No, it is not "perhaps", it is so. The observer is the self, but the self is not one entity. It is a whole bundle of memories, each memory bringing its own perspective, its own values.These perspectives and values are in contradiction with each other, and hence the confusion.

Is it not so?

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Wed, 13 Feb 2019 #68
Thumb_dm Dan McDermott United States 1389 posts in this forum Offline

Clive Elwell wrote:
Firstly, just what is or are "the scale"? is there only one scale? if there was only one, then perhaps there would be no problem, one could weigh the factors against each other, and make a decision

One 'scale'. The 'balance' in your/my 'consciousness' at any moment? You do this or you do that, decisions are being constantly made and the 'controller' is always taking the 'credit' (or the blame!) for what is done...but is there a controller? Or is it as you say a bundle of memories interacting in the confusion? So "see what happens", is a reminder that there is no 'me' atop that pile (which seems the hardest thing to realize in the moment, doesn't it?... If 'I' don't make the proper decision who will?) But that 'I' doesn't exist, does it?

But... if things should ever really go south, I suggest a listen to The Four Freshmen on their 1959 'Love Lost' album...hopefully this link will take you there:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9ttTUSxLNmA

This may be all wrong of course

This post was last updated by Dan McDermott Wed, 13 Feb 2019.

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Wed, 13 Feb 2019 #69
Thumb_kinfonet_avatar Clive Elwell New Zealand 5198 posts in this forum Offline

Dan McDermott wrote:

One 'scale'

Dan, I agree that there is only one scale operating at any given moment. But that scale is not an absolute, it is just one fragment among a great many that operate at various times, various moments, in the mind.

Yes, you are right to ask “is there a controller?” I have seen, distantly, that that is a central issue behind this decision making issue. The controller is the self, the “I”, and it is the self that seeks pleasure and security in the future, and also that is fearful of insecurity and suffering in that (imagined) future.

Or as T S Eliot put it more poetically:

"Wavering between the profit and the loss

In this brief transit where the dreams cross

The dream-crossed twilight between birth and dying"

Is there a controller? I think this is the most important question that the mind can ask. It is easy to say “no”, but then why does that controller-controlled movement continue? Because the falseness of it is not completely seen? Because of the enormous momentum the movement has, gathered over thousands of years? Or what?

Thoughts THINKS that there is a controller. Thought BEHAVES like there is a controller – and there is the rub. We can say “but it isn’t really”, but the bahavour continues – continues without ever getting anywhere, no?

Not sure why that Four Freshmen song comes into this! And "go south"?

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Thu, 14 Feb 2019 #70
Thumb_dm Dan McDermott United States 1389 posts in this forum Offline

Clive Elwell wrote:
Not sure why that Four Freshmen song comes into this! And "go south"?

'Going south' is a term for things going badly...The Freshman for the beautiful sound (with a beautiful song) that humans can make when they 'co-operate.'

This may be all wrong of course

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Thu, 14 Feb 2019 #71
Thumb_dm Dan McDermott United States 1389 posts in this forum Offline

Clive Elwell wrote:
Is there a controller? I think this is the most important question that the mind can ask. It is easy to say “no”, but then why does that controller-controlled movement continue?

I think Peter's suggestion was that it is because of the "concern" of the self...

I would add to that, though it may be all the same 'driver', 'want'. The self is always wanting a situation that is different than 'what is'. It believes that psychological 'peace' is somewhere 'out there' (in time), never here. Isn't that why the self is 'contradiction' itself? It is always in 'opposition' to the unending movement of life, always trying to 'find', always seeing itself as separate from what it is seeking...always chasing its dream of security?

This may be all wrong of course

This post was last updated by Dan McDermott Thu, 14 Feb 2019.

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Thu, 14 Feb 2019 #72
Thumb_dm Dan McDermott United States 1389 posts in this forum Offline

Clive Elwell wrote:
I agree that there is only one scale operating at any given moment. But that scale is not an absolute, it is just one fragment among a great many that operate at various times, various moments, in the mind.

True but I look at it like a basket with all these elements inside and every morning we awaken to see what the 'shaking' during the night has brought to the surface...one morning all is beautiful, next morning I'm depressed or angry or bored etc....but all this is always seen as 'me', my mood, my feeling etc. Always the 'me'... 'I' am always there, right? But is that just the illusion, and the truth is that the 'I'/ me really doesn't exist except as this persistent, usually unquestioned illusion?

Whatever takes place inside or outside is what 'has' to take place (or it would be different). The 'self' is the illusion that it can somehow make things be 'different' psychologically (as is done outwardly)...that it controls what takes place, that it is in charge etc., but 'things' just 'take place' and the 'thinker' thinks that it could have gone some other way and that is false. Isn't that the source of the almost perpetual conflict and contradiction?

This may be all wrong of course

This post was last updated by Dan McDermott Thu, 14 Feb 2019.

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Thu, 14 Feb 2019 #73
Thumb_kinfonet_avatar Clive Elwell New Zealand 5198 posts in this forum Offline

I am asking, can the whole business of scales, of measuring, of weighing the options, the profit and loss considerations, just be dropped? Is there another way altogether – not a ‘way’ - to go about life? Basically I am asking, can one cease trying to take care of oneself? Of course one has to ensure the basic necessities of life, food and shelter. But all the rest that we are so concerned with. If we do not take care of ourselves, will ‘life take care of us’? I believe K has said no, or at least said not to ask that question.

But K has also said yes, life will take care of us:

“Religion is the feeling of goodness that love which is like the river living moving everlastingly. In that state you will find there comes a moment when there is no longer any search at all; and this ending of search is the beginning of something totally different. The search for God, for truth, the feeling of being completely good - not the cultivation of goodness, of humility, but the seeking out of something beyond the inventions and tricks of the mind, which means having a feeling for that something, living in it, being it - that is true religion. But you can do that only when you leave the pool you have dug for yourself and go out into the river of life. Then life has an astonishing way of taking care of you, because then there is no taking care on your part. Life carries you where it will because you are part of itself; then there is no problem of security, of what people say or don't say, and that is the beauty of life.”

Certainly life seemed to care of K – I think he had no real interest in taking care of himself. Except he seemed to take scrupulous care of his body.

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Thu, 14 Feb 2019 #74
Thumb_kinfonet_avatar Clive Elwell New Zealand 5198 posts in this forum Offline

Dan McDermott wrote:

True but I look at it like a basket with all these elements inside and every morning we awaken to see what the 'shaking' during the night has brought to the surface...one morning all is beautiful, next morning I'm depressed or angry or bored etc...

Interesting that you say that, Dan. Yes, that is an accurate description of what goes on here also. But a little while at choiceless awareness seems to transcend those background feelings, to free the mind for a new day, would you say?

But what is that “shaking” that goes on in sleep? Is it inadequate sleep?
I think something has been missing from our recent discussions – they have not included the fact that “we are the world”, that our consciousness is not “ours”, but part of the collective, the old river of human consciousness. Perhaps the point at which we emerge from that, on waking, determines that first “state of being”?

but all this is always seen as 'me', my mood, my feeling etc. Always the 'me'... 'I' am always there, right? But is that just the illusion, and the truth is that the 'I'/ me really doesn't exist except as this persistent, usually unquestioned illusion?

Whatever takes place inside or outside is what 'has' to take place (or it would be different).

Intriguing statement.

The 'self' is the illusion that it can somehow make things be 'different' psychologically (as is done outwardly)...that it controls what takes place, that it is in charge etc.,

Yes, that is so.

but 'things' just 'take place' and the 'thinker' thinks that it could have gone some other way and that is false. Isn't that the source of the almost perpetual conflict and contradiction?

Yes, the notion that the self is somehow in charge. If it WAS in charge, then surely things would be different by now – things including the global situation and the state of each person.

Always the 'me'... 'I' am always there, right? But is that just the illusion, and the truth is that the 'I'/ me really doesn't exist except as this persistent, usually unquestioned illusion?

I wouldn’t say that I am ALWAYS there. There is also looking, for example. And listening. And feelings – before they are named, recognised.

But what is it to be without the self, the controller. As I “experience” it, it is a very very changing horizon. There is no certainty, no security. Nothing static. Everything is passing. And surely this is why thought created the self, to give the illusion there is something that changes not. But there is an enormous cost to that illusion. The whole world of fear, conflict and suffering. It was a very, very, “wrong turn”.

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Fri, 15 Feb 2019 #75
Thumb_dm Dan McDermott United States 1389 posts in this forum Offline

Clive Elwell wrote:
But what is it to be without the self, the controller. As I “experience” it, it is a very very changing horizon. There is no certainty, no security. Nothing static. Everything is passing. And surely this is why thought created the self, to give the illusion there is something that changes not. But there is an enormous cost to that illusion. The whole world of fear, conflict and suffering. It was a very, very, “wrong turn”.

So we don't continue in that 'wrong' direction, yes? We leave it behind. We see what it is like to not travel that road anymore...To not continue in that direction.

From J.R.'s edited forum post yesterday (my bold):

DB: All right. So that is the key point - the direction of movement. When our ( mind's) movement is fixed in a direction, inwardly it will come to conflict. So if we say it has no more fixed direction then what is it doing? Is it moving in all directions?

K: Could one say that when one really comes to that state, that is the ( original) source of all ( life ) energy?

This may be all wrong of course

This post was last updated by Dan McDermott Fri, 15 Feb 2019.

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Fri, 15 Feb 2019 #76
Thumb_donna_and_jim_fb_bw Tom Paine United States 2712 posts in this forum Offline

Perhaps today’s QOTD might touch on the topic of the thread. Just posting here in case there’s any interest:

Public Talk 29th February, 1948 | Mumbai, India

... So, is an ideal necessary to understand what is? Will the ideal of non-violence help me to understand violence? That is, if I am violent and want to transcend violence must I have the ideal of non-violence? Surely, I don't have to have it do I? It is a hindrance, a positive hindrance to my direct understanding of the state in which I am, which is violence. So, the ideal, the opposite, the example, is a hindrance, an avoidance of the direct understanding of what is. Being violent, can I not understand it and transcend it? I can tackle it, I can understand it, only when I am not escaping from it, when I haven't this fantasy of the ideal, when I can look at it, examine it, and act upon it directly. But I don't want to act upon it directly, and therefore I invent this marvellous thing called the opposite, the ideal - a state which I can never achieve, because it is merely a postponement.

So, the problem is: how to transcend, how to go beyond what is, which is violence, and not how to achieve the opposite. There is no opposite. There are the opposites of man and woman, a biological fact; but the opposite that the mind has created is non-existent. It is a convenient ruse, a trick of the mind to avoid acting directly upon what is. Can I transcend that which is, and not transform it, not make it into something else? I am greedy, violent; and can that violence, greed, come to an end? Obviously, it comes to an end when I can examine it and be completely aware of its whole social and psychological significance; but I can examine it only when there is no escape from what is - which none of us want to do, and that is the difficulty. None of us are honest enough to acknowledge that we are what we are, and then do something about it. To know that I am a liar, to know that I am greedy, is already the beginning of freedom from greed, from falsehood. But to acknowledge it requires a certain honesty, and as we are so dishonest in our thinking, in our relationships, in almost everything that we do, we are incapable of facing what is. So, in this question is involved seeing the truth in the false, that is seeing the truth of the falseness of the ideal; and the moment one is capable of seeing the truth in the false, one is also able to see that which is true as being true. It is that truthfulness, the acknowledgment that you are greedy, that you are violent, seeing the fact - of what you are without any pretence, that brings about liberation from it, and not the pursuit of the opposite.

Let it Be

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Fri, 15 Feb 2019 #77
Thumb_kinfonet_avatar Clive Elwell New Zealand 5198 posts in this forum Offline

I had raised the question "what does it mean to understand?", but it faded away, as many things do. But I recently came upon K's response to this question:

Question: You often use the term `understanding' in connection with the dissolution of problems. What exactly do you mean by understanding?

Krishnamurti: If I want to understand a child, what must I do? I must watch him, must I not? I must watch him when he sleeps, when he plays, when he cries, when he is mischievous, and not condemn him or compare him with his elder brother. I must not have a pattern of what he should be. Is that not so? In the same way, if I have a problem, I must watch it, and I cannot watch it if I want a particular solution of that problem, or if I condemn or fear it. Fear, comparison, judgment, condemnation, prevent me from understanding the problem. That is, if I condemn, judge, compare, or identify myself with the problem, I don't understand the problem. But if I don't do any of these things, then does the problem exist? Do you understand? The problem exists as long as I am separate from the problem, does it not? I wonder if you are getting this?

Look, take the problem of violence, envy, greed, or what you will. If I am violent and say, "I must not be violent", I have already condemned my violence. That very word `violence' contains condemnation. Is that not so? If I want to understand the whole process of violence, I must not judge it, I must not compare it with what I should be, and there must be no fear. When I remove fear, when there is no condemnation, no comparison, then is there violence and all the problems connected with it?

Do you understand, sirs? You are s waiting for me to answer. Please don't. Experiment with yourself, don't wait for me to answer, because I have nothing to answer. You see, what we consider to be positive thinking is a process of being told what to do; and is that thinking? Or is there only one form of thinking, the highest, which is to push, to probe, to inquire and never to accept? And you cannot inquire if you are caught in a so-called positive form of thinking. I wonder if you are following this, sirs?

We are trying to find out what it means to understand a problem, and we are examining the word `understanding'. I see that I cannot understand the problem of envy, for example, if I condemn, judge, identify, compare, and all the rest of it; and I am asking myself, when the mind ceases to do these things, does the problem exist? The problem exists as long as I am comparing, judging, evaluating, accepting or denying it, struggling against it. But the moment there is no comparison in the profound sense of the word, the moment I cease comparing myself with my guru, my ideal, or with the man above me in my job, does not the problem of envy disappear? So, to understand a problem and dissolve it totally there must be no form of condemnation, judgment, comparison, which only increase and do not resolve the problem.

(Delhi 1956 Talk 3)

I find relevance to the question I raised recently about the confusion that arises when trying to make a decision about one's life

I note that there is no reference in K's reply to DESCRIBING the problem, or ANALYSING the problem. There are no pro's and con's. In fact there is no reference to the past whatsoever. And there is no trying to resolve the problem, only understanding the problem - by observing it.

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Fri, 15 Feb 2019 #78
Thumb_kinfonet_avatar Clive Elwell New Zealand 5198 posts in this forum Offline

Dan McDermott wrote:
The 'self' is the illusion that it can somehow make things be 'different' psychologically (as is done outwardly)...that it controls what takes place, that it is in charge etc., but 'things' just 'take place' and the 'thinker' thinks that it could have gone some other way and that is false. Isn't that the source of the almost perpetual conflict and contradiction?

Embedded in the quote I posted immediately above is this:

The problem exists as long as I am separate from the problem, does it not?

As the thinker comes in, in reaction, that is the very essence of separation, is it not?

As I am seeing it, two things are created simultaneously, but pretending to be one thing. The thinker, and what is thought about. The controller, and what is to be controlled. Etc. Separation is the very essence of the self. And so there is always a problem for the self to solve - apparently.

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Fri, 15 Feb 2019 #79
Thumb_donna_and_jim_fb_bw Tom Paine United States 2712 posts in this forum Offline

Peter Kesting wrote:
I just now noticed that confusion is concern for self. I'm not sure if that is the whole of it

I was going to say that the self is always confused and in conflict but I reconsidered. The self that knows what it wants and pursues his/its goal ruthlessly is not at all confused. I want to be the world's best golfer, for example. No confusion about that .

Let it Be

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Sat, 16 Feb 2019 #80
Thumb_kinfonet_avatar Clive Elwell New Zealand 5198 posts in this forum Offline

Tom Paine wrote:
I want to be the world's best golfer, for example. No confusion about that .

Not sure about that, Tom, in two ways.

One could say that a person who is pursuing his ambition to be successful in the world has the wrong values, and so is confused. Confused about what are right values. He may not CALL himself confused, being so caught up in his single minded pursuit, but nevertheless he is.

And secondly, aren't even the most "successful" people also ordinary people? Experiencing the same fears, doubts, uncertainties, insecurities? In fact to maintain a position in the world must bring about greater trepidation about loosing it than an "ordinary person", no?

i would certainly agree that confusion implies concern for the self, and the "greatest" of men in this world undoubtedly have selves.

This post was last updated by Clive Elwell Sat, 16 Feb 2019.

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Sat, 16 Feb 2019 #81
Thumb_dm Dan McDermott United States 1389 posts in this forum Offline

Tom Paine wrote:
The self that knows what it wants and pursues his/its goal ruthlessly is not at all confused. I want to be the world's best golfer, for example. No confusion about that .

Using your example, if I want to be a great golfer (forgetting about greatest), I have to have a degree of talent and then through training, discipline, I can hone my game. But all of that is done by the body: hand-eye coordination, suppleness, strength, knowledge of the equipment, kinesthetic sense, etc. It's very possible for the body to do all this on its own just for the joy of perfecting its skills...this takes 'time'. No confusion...Now the other thing you brought to this is the 'selfs' desire to be the 'greatest', this is where the 'confusion' takes place, as I see it, the self has adopted an 'ideal' (to be the greatest) and that desire introduces 'time' into the psychological where it has no place, where it is the source of conflict and contradiction: "I am not the greatest yet, but in time I will be and then I will have all the 'perks' that go along with fame", etc,etc.... But along with the time/ideal, I bring in the fear of all the things that can go wrong with my goal: my health, my muscles can fail, I can 'choke up', I can make mistakes...So where the body is perfecting itself for the pleasure of doing so, the self 'confuses' the issue by having a goal of being the 'greatest'. And introducing 'time' into the psychological where it doesn't belong. K has said that the "I is time".

This may be all wrong of course

This post was last updated by Dan McDermott Sun, 17 Feb 2019.

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Sat, 16 Feb 2019 #82
Thumb_kinfonet_avatar Clive Elwell New Zealand 5198 posts in this forum Offline

Dan McDermott wrote:
The 'self' is the illusion that it can somehow make things be 'different' psychologically (as is done outwardly)...that it controls what takes place, that it is in charge etc., but 'things' just 'take place' and the 'thinker' thinks that it could have gone some other way and that is false. Isn't that the source of the almost perpetual conflict and contradiction?

Yes, I would say so. It appears that way.

I remember, I think, somewhere in "The Ending of Time", someone says "But the self is an illusion" And K replies, approximately, "Illusion, reality, call it what you will, it is THERE".

A quick internet search reveals that many people have said "The self is an illusion". And it certainly seems to me that it is created by thought, projected by the mind. Do this perception "help"?

Have to rush out of the house, will take this up later.

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Sun, 17 Feb 2019 #83
Thumb_donna_and_jim_fb_bw Tom Paine United States 2712 posts in this forum Offline

Tom Paine wrote:

I want to be the world's best golfer, for example. No confusion about that .
Not sure about that, Tom, in two ways.

Clive: One could say that a person who is pursuing his ambition to be successful in the world has the wrong values, and so is confused.

Tom: I simply meant that he’s not confused about what he wants. But that want is of the self. In a moment of strong desire there’s no confusion, right? I know I want...I feel that I must have ....that woman or man for my partner or mate. I knew quite a few kids growing up who were very skilled athletes. They seemed to have no confusion or conflict about their desire to succeed....to make the football team....to be the star quarterback....to single mindedly pursue this as the center of their whole life. Long hours of practice even in sweltering heat or bitter cold. Sports was their world. For some reason, I don’t see them as being confused about the direction they chose for their life. I think Dan was saying that this pursuit need not be of the self if they pursue excellence in sports out of the joy of doing it. I’d say there’s some reward for the self lurking behind their dedication and long hours of practice whether it’s conscious or not. I visited a local university last summer during a brutal hot spell and the football team was out on the field practicing in near 100 degree weather with high humidity. It was exhausting to be out in that heat for my girlfriend and myself for even a few minutes. Only self centered ambition would lead one to be playing football in that heat.

Let it Be

This post was last updated by Tom Paine Sun, 17 Feb 2019.

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Sun, 17 Feb 2019 #84
Thumb_avatar Peter Kesting United States 657 posts in this forum Offline

There was confusion here in this one yesterday and this morning. Now it's gone. Looking into what happened there. The confusion was that perhaps I said something wrong. Self image was involved. One was seeing that what was necessary there was to put away the past. To become innocent again. But confusion cannot put away the past. Just now I read a K quote that Wm had posted on "right question" thread. Then there was an interest in what was being said there. Not to get anything but just to see, to examine the issue being considered there. In that careful looking at what was being said, out of complete interest only, the past of the confusion was gone. Automatically the past was gone. Innocence again.

Watching now what might arise perhaps confusion again but not yet.

This post was last updated by Peter Kesting Sun, 17 Feb 2019.

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Sun, 17 Feb 2019 #85
Thumb_kinfonet_avatar Clive Elwell New Zealand 5198 posts in this forum Offline

Tom Paine wrote:
I simply meant that he’s not confused about what he wants.

Yes, I understand, Tom. Perhaps by focusing on one, overwhelming desire, one can, for a while, cover up, escape from, the myriad 'small' desires that plague one. Although such a person may not FEEL confused (although I am not sure about that), one still might say he IS confused. The actual quality of his mind has not changed, fundamentally, has it?

Tom Paine wrote:
Only self centered ambition would lead one

ALL ambition is self-centered, is it not? Even for what might be described as the most "spiritual" objectives.

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Sun, 17 Feb 2019 #86
Thumb_kinfonet_avatar Clive Elwell New Zealand 5198 posts in this forum Offline

Peter Kesting wrote:
Then there was an interest in what was being said there. Not to get anything but just to see, to examine the issue being considered there. In that carefull seeing into what was being said the past of the confusion was gone.

Yes Peter, I went through the same thing, discovered the same thing in a small discussion group yesterday. We were examining a question that had been put to K, and I could see that only when there was a desire for an answer did confusion come in. In simply exploring the question, opening it up, staying with the further questions that arose, there was no confusion.

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Sun, 17 Feb 2019 #87
Thumb_kinfonet_avatar Clive Elwell New Zealand 5198 posts in this forum Offline

Dan McDermott wrote:
Whatever takes place inside or outside is what 'has' to take place (or it would be different). The 'self' is the illusion that it can somehow make things be 'different' psychologically (as is done outwardly)...that it controls what takes place, that it is in charge etc., but 'things' just 'take place' and the 'thinker' thinks that it could have gone some other way and that is false. Isn't that the source of the almost perpetual conflict and contradiction?

I had last written, yesterday:

Have to rush out of the house, will take this up later.

One deceives oneself when one tells oneself "I will take this up later". That MAY happen, but generally the mind moves on, new things, different questions, interest it, new influences arise, and there is no guarantee that that same 'spark', the same interest that was there, will be there in the future.

But the observer/observed issue is ALWAYS there in the mind, is it not? Actually, having said that, I am not sure that it is so. At this moment, being on the forum, there is no sense of the division in the mind that is characteristic of the thinker/thought separation.

I do rememberthat I wanted to take up an excerpt from the K posted in #77

The problem exists as long as I am separate from the problem, does it not? I wonder if you are getting this?

I will leave it there to ponder

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Sun, 17 Feb 2019 #88
Thumb_kinfonet_avatar Clive Elwell New Zealand 5198 posts in this forum Offline

Dan McDermott wrote:
Whatever takes place inside or outside is what 'has' to take place (or it would be different). The 'self' is the illusion that it can somehow make things be 'different' psychologically (as is done outwardly)...that it controls what takes place, that it is in charge etc., but 'things' just 'take place' and the 'thinker' thinks that it could have gone some other way and that is false. Isn't that the source of the almost perpetual conflict and contradiction?

I had last written, yesterday:

Have to rush out of the house, will take this up later.

One deceives oneself when one tells oneself "I will take this up later". That MAY happen, but generally the mind moves on, new things, different questions, interest it, new influences arise, and there is no guarantee that that same 'spark', the same interest that was there, will be there in the future.

But the observer/observed issue is ALWAYS there in the mind, is it not? Actually, having said that, I am not sure that it is so. At this moment, being on the forum, there is no sense of the division in the mind that is characteristic of the thinker/thought separation.

I do rememberthat I wanted to take up an excerpt from the K posted in #77

The problem exists as long as I am separate from the problem, does it not? I wonder if you are getting this?

I will leave it there to ponder

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Mon, 18 Feb 2019 #89
Thumb_donna_and_jim_fb_bw Tom Paine United States 2712 posts in this forum Offline

Clive Elwell wrote:
Yes, I understand, Tom. Perhaps by focusing on one, overwhelming desire, one can, for a while, cover up, escape from, the myriad 'small' desires that plague one. Although such a person may not FEEL confused (although I am not sure about that), one still might say he IS confused. The actual quality of his mind has not changed, fundamentally, has it?

I'd say that my friends were certainly confused in their everyday living. They escaped from that by making one desire the center of their life. The focus of their existence. In that there was no confusion. Everywhere else they had the usual confusion and contradiction that we all grow up with. But in that one area there was a feeling of security.....maybe even sense of certainty. Everywhere else was uncertainty....anxiety....at least on the unconscious level. I read some of Springsteen's biography, and in the midst of a totally chaotic life, music became his island of 'certainty'....his anchor in terribly stormy seas.

Let it Be

This post was last updated by Tom Paine Mon, 18 Feb 2019.

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Mon, 18 Feb 2019 #90
Thumb_donna_and_jim_fb_bw Tom Paine United States 2712 posts in this forum Offline

Clive Elwell wrote:
nly self centered ambition would lead one

ALL ambition is self-centered, is it not?

I think that's correct. It's certainly devisive....my ambition is more important than you.

Let it Be

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