APPLYING WHAT WE KNOW by Eugene Halliday

[Recorded at ‘Parklands’ Altrincham, Cheshire, on 2nd of October, 1983]


1.                  … Because the funny thing about human beings is, that they have been collecting information for thousands of years about correct behaviour to each other, but they have not yet begun to apply that in any considerable degree. In fact, a bishop in London said a few years ago, “After two thousand years of Christian exaltation, precisely no effect is observable.” And I was asked, last night, “Why we do not apply what we know?”


2.                  We all know, if we are all related together - human beings - that we have the same origin. And yet we have a Beirut; we have African quarrels; we have European quarrels; we have Russia, China, America, Britain - all the other countries - busy fighting each other for some material advantage, as they are not going to leave it.


3.                  Now, apart from one or two mystical cases, some of which are mentioned in the Bible, all the people who have come on Earth have died. “To the born, certain is death,” said Buddha.


4.                  Well, we’re in different distances from that death, most of us by age, but not necessarily by car accident. Every year, millions of people are killed by accidents, by wars, by diseases, by starvation and so on. Why have we not yet learned the lesson, when we know the lesson already? And this is the subject matter we’re going to discuss tonight.


5.                  It is fundamentally very, very, simple, and practically the most difficult thing there is in the universe. Why it is difficult, is to do with what we call inertia.


6.                  Now ‘inertia’ is the tendency of a thing, once stationary or moving, to remain in that condition unless acted upon by some external force that will change it. The physical definition of inertia: the tendency of a thing or a body to continue, either at rest or in motion, unless acted upon by some other force. Now this is the big enemy – Inertia. The tendency to do what we are doing, either sitting still or moving.


7.                  And the same thing applies at all levels. Physically there is inertia of the body; if you run fast up to a wall and then decide to stop two inches from it, you don’t. Emotionally there is inertia; you have emotional attitudes of love, or hate, or indifference towards objects, and people, and other creatures. Mentationally you have thoughts all running along: habitual thoughts; daily thoughts; the same old thoughts, day in, day out, week in, week out, every year thinking roughly the same things about the same things. So, the three lower ones, the body, the emotions and the mentations, are very, very, inert.


8.                  Now when we come to the question of the concept (the index finger symbol - the concept) has to do with Eternal Truths, and that also has an inertia, but the inertia of an Eternal Truth is quite different from the inertia of mentation.


9.                  Now the inertia of ‘mentation’ (temporal, time-sequence thinking) is nothing but a habit acquired in time. You think in a certain way because you are brought up in a certain type of society. Human beings condition each other as children, and they condition each other in their social relations, and this mentational inertia is an externally acquired habit; the habit of disliking people who are of a different denomination in the same religion, or of different religions. We have Jews, and Christians, and Muslims, and Hindus, Shintoists - all kinds of beings - simply because they were externally conditioned as children to recite certain ideas as belief. Those are established, like learning to drive a car. Where is the clutch? Where is the brake? (5.00) You learn it, and then after a time, your foot, your hand, automatically goes to those things. And so it is with this mentational process. You acquire ideas, “Are you a Catholic? Are you a Protestant? Are you for Free Ireland, or an Ireland bound with Britain?” And so on, These are all inertias acquired by education from outside - they’re mentational.


10.              But the other kind of inertia - the Conceptual Inertia - has to do with elementary propositions, like a triangle has three sides, forever, and a square has four, and a pentacle has five, and so on.


11.              Now this type of inertia of the conceptual order is totally different from the inertia of the mentational order. In conceptual inertia, what we have is the inertia of eternal truth – ‘The things that are equal to another thing are equal to each other’. In that respect, all eternal truths are inertias, and inertia means, ‘in-work-affirming’. The ert, E-R-T, means work. In-ert-ia. There is work in Cosmos, and that cosmic work is what we call truth, as to its formal aspect. The formal shape of things that are always, invariably, the same shape and always will be; squares will have four, triangles three, sides. Those will remain eternally what they are. Those are conceptual inertias. They are inertias in the mind of the Absolute … So we must distinguish between those.


12.              Now when we come to volition (symbolised by the thumb), when we come to volition, volition fundamentally is ‘initiative’. Now ‘initiative’ has no inertia whatever. If you say that, “I tend to will the same things in the same circumstance,” that is not a true use of the word ‘will’. When you initiate there is no inertia. Where there is inertia you have fallen into identification, either with ‘the eternal concept of truth’ or a mentational trained reaction given to you by your parents and educators, or by an emotional attitude, or by a sheer physical habitual tendency.


13.              Now, we all know that these things are true, that we have inertias. But very, very, seldom do we stand still, and then use initiative. Initiative has no interia. ‘Initiative’ is ‘free’ and always ‘now’. ‘Now-ness’ is an essential quality of initiative.


14.              The problem is, “How do we get to initiative, if we have fallen into a state of inertia?”


15.              Now you all know that most of the major religions have a story about a ‘Fall’. Now ‘The Fall’ is quite a simple proposition. It consists in this - that a free intelligence fabricates a form, and then identifies itself with the form, and forgets that it made the form. You all know the story of a Greek sculptor who made a very beautiful statue of a woman, and then fell in love with it. He forgot that he had made it. In the same way, human beings, individuals, design for themselves a self-image, like Quentin Crisp, and they make this self-image their life’s pattern. They identify with it, and they then live that patterned life as if they were that pattern. And they forget, “I have created the pattern by my Will.”


16.              So the question put to me was, “How are we going to remember, every day, to re-posit to ourselves, that we are not the slaves of inertia, that we are spirits of initiative; that we have the power to change, immediately, at any point of time, our decision.” We don’t have to be over-ridden by education … or by emotional attitude.


17.              Now the ‘how’ begins with an ‘H’. The others (10.00) like: what; where; when; why; who, begin with a ‘W’ - but the ‘how’ begins with an ‘H’.


18.              Now you all know that ‘H’ is the eighth letter of the alphabet and signifies, ‘hierarchy of powers’. That means, that to understand ‘how’, we must understand ‘hierarchy of powers’; and in our own being we have a hierarchy. We think; we feel; we will; we co-ordinate; we embody, and these are arranged in a hierarchy. If we don’t gather ourselves together, then we cannot control ourselves.


19.              We ‘are’ masses of energy. Our body is energy; our emotions are energy; our mentations are energy; our concepts are energy; our volition is immediate energy of initiative. It is all energy, but energy arranges itself in a hierarchy.


20.              The moment you get a point of initiative, a sequence follows. That was illustrated very simply while we were away, when Zero was feeding some seagulls. She threw some bread and it fell onto the sand; and the seagulls immediately perceived it, came down and started gobbled it up. Well. a few feet below us there was a ledge, and some of the bread fell on that ledge. But, the seagulls, seeing the bread falling on the sand, thought, “Bread is on the sand.” So they all flew down there, and they were all eating up the bread on the sand. And when the sand bread had gone, they looked disconsolate, “No more bread.” But the hierarchy of intelligence and power and initiative, in no two individuals, is equal. And at one point, I shouted to the seagulls, “Up here! Up here!” and one seagull looked up, and he flew up onto the ledge, and found the other bread. He was the first one to notice that this signal meant ‘bread on the ledge’. He came up and started eating, and immediately the others saw he’d gone. ‘Gull’ means ‘appetite’. ‘Gullibility’ means ‘exposure to eternal appetite’. So they all followed the first one.


21.              And in the history of the human race there has always been somebody who saw ‘where the bread was on the ledge’, and have gone up to get it, and in history they’re called ‘Great Men’. They’re only great - observe the word eat in great - because they saw something to eat, which the others had not noticed. So, in order to begin to apply what we know, we have to recognise a hierarchy of powers in ourselves, and say, “Top of the list, Will; next, the concept; next the temporal mentational process; next the emotional response; and then the body.” There is a hierarchy.


22.              If you forget the others, and think only of the body, you react - like the physical being. And physical beings collect physical beings. There is a body, and there is a spirit animating that body, and one day - for whatever reason -  the spirit departs, and there is a body. As soon as there is a body there, then ‘body men’ come and start arranging the funeral. Where the body is, there will be somebody dealing with the body who has concentrated on that occupation - of dealing with bodies


23.              Now some other beings deal in trying to make bodies not die, and trying to make bodies healthy, and so on. But, all the time, when you are dealing with a physical body from which spirit has totally departed, you are dealing with an inert mass that will not co-operate. But the moment the being is alive, or feels, it will respond to some kind of helpful act.


24.              Now the rule of the macrocosm-microcosm correspondence is: the macrocosm - that is the big cosmos, the big universe and the little universe – man - are exactly, internally, matched, point for point. So that whatever rule (15.00) we find in the external universe, we can find the same rule inside ourselves, internally. Our body is a little universe, and it has in it a solar plexus like the solar system has the sun; and around it, like planets, go chemicals in the circulatory system.


25.              To get this hierarchy, we must get, first of all, a concept that there is a hierarchy; that the power of initiative is a real power; that I can choose to bend a finger or not. Now, if I can bend my finger, I can wrinkle my nose, I can wiggle my toes, I can wiggle anything I’ve got, with practice - like these two wiggling fingers. That I can wiggle anything whatever, and this is most important to realise. If we can move any part of ourselves, by further practice we can move every part of ourselves. We can move not only the body by muscle contraction, we can move and change emotional attitudes; we can move and change mentational judgements of times and events. We can move concepts which are eternal, but we cannot change those. We cannot change the definition of a square and a triangle. They are called ‘eternal truths’ because we cannot change them. So, when Plato is talking about the noumenal world - the world of these conceptual forms - he says. “This is an unchangeable world, and the time world is a world of changes.” Because in the time we can get a triangle and a saw, and saw out one side of the triangle, and bend the others together and make a tepee. Or you can get a square, and saw a piece out of that and make a triangle. Or you can get any number of any things that exist, materially, and change them. But the ideas do not change. They are eternal truths, which cannot change.


26.              Now, we have all been taught these truths in the major religions of the world, and we have not liked to be taught these truths in part of our being, because these truths are, factually, restraints upon our activity.


27.              When you were a child and you were told funny things like, “Be good, don’t be bad,” you didn’t like that teaching because it imposed on your fundamental spontaneous action, and therefore you set up a guard when you were quite a little baby, against truth which conditions action, if you are identified with it.


28.              So there is a war inside the human being. We have heard truths, we have nodded our heads at the truth, formally, but we have not agreed to obey that truth where it impedes our own action and desire.


29.              Well we’re talking about how to apply what we know. So we have to look at the physical things we do as the most obvious things, and ask ourselves daily, “Have we got a physical habit that we can change?” And if we can, redesign that habit. Make another habit, just for the practice and the proof, that habits in the time world can be changed. But then ask ourselves if we can change the definition of a triangle not to mean ‘three-sided figure’ and the answer is, “No!”


30.              [Members of audience here (…?...) ….. Eugene: You said, “Appears (…?...) There isn’t (…?…) “]


31.              You’re talking about a concept. You cannot take a concept and spin it in time. You can take a piece of wood, make a triangle and spin the wood in time, and you’ll wear the corners off, and it will become a circle – if it’s an existential material, but not a concept. When you spin a concept in your mind, what are you actually doing? You are imagining different positions of a non-existential pattern, aren’t you? So it is not a criticism is it?


32.              You see it’s so very, very, easy to confound (20.00) the mentational level, which has to do with time and matter; with the eternal formal factors, which are unchangeable. Because at one moment we are thinking about time, “I’ve got an appointment, I’ve got to see so and so, he is my friend, I will go and see him.” And then the principle comes, “It is raining, I haven’t got my hat with me ... Should I go out in the rain to see him … Only he is my friend?” That’s a concept. Am I going to get wet for the sake of the concept, or am I going to re-adjust myself for the sake of keeping dry?


33.              Now the failure of people with religious beliefs to apply their beliefs, has been the clash between temporal mentation and eternal verity. We know what eternal verity is: in principle we are all nice people when we are not annoyed, and we are all brothers under the skin, aren’t we? Negroes have the same numbers of chromosomes as white people. They can cross-breed. But mentationally, some people (say the Afrikaans people in general) have been taught that these people are not breed-able. Have they not? They made a ‘hate-apart’, an ‘apartheid’. But that is a temporal invention of convenience denying the validity of an eternal truth.


34.              Now we’re talking again, and we have to remind ourselves continuously what we are talking about, and we have to do this every day and all day. Some people do what they call, “Taking a meditation course.” They go to a meditation class and they learn a mantra, and they are told, “Say this for one quarter of an hour a day and the rest of the time talk drivel.” … True! …. “Hare Krishna, Hare Rama.” … “A quarter of an hour will save your soul.” … It won’t! … It’ll give you a concept that you are saving your soul!


35.              Krishnamurti said,for fifty years he had been lecturing people, “There are no spiritual teachers. ‘Guru’ means ‘spiritual teacher’. There are none. Why do you keep coming?” And a voice from the audience said, ”To be reminded.” … “Too bad, quite wrong, ‘To be reminded!’” … Because everyday, time (mentation) attacks us and destroys the memory of our reality.


36.              Now we’ve said that this reality, fundamentally, is very, very, simple. In a mantra like ‘ram’, ‘ra-ma’, the meaning of ‘rama’ is very simple. ‘Ra’ means discriminative activity and ‘ma’ means appetival activity. ‘Ra-ma’ means both together.


37.              Now it is said that if you recite the mantra “Rama,” you should swallow the ‘M’. You don’t say ‘ra-ma’, you say ‘rhamm’ and swallow the other one. You say ‘ra’ coming out, and ‘mma’ going in.


38.              Because the fundamental of ‘ma’ is appetite … ‘maw’, M-A-W. When you say ‘ra’ you are discriminative; when you say ‘ma’ you are indiscriminative appetite. And if you become aware of that fact, you can know when you are conscious that you are an appetite. And when you are not conscious that you are an appetite (you are an appetite with no consciousness) you will eat anything, like babies eat their own excrement and lumps of coal and things.


39.              I was once at a zoo with David and Zero and there was a gorilla there, there were lots of gorillas. Wonderful things gorillas, so spontaneous and natural. A couple of these climbed up a tree. One excreted, looked at a nice delectable piece about so large, and proceeded to eat it. And at that moment Zero said, “Oh, I didn’t know gorillas did that.” … Now the tendency to want to kiss gorillas vanished at that moment!


40.              Now the gorilla was not ‘ra’, it was just ‘ma’. If you said to that gorilla, "Are you aware that is a discarded material from the body, called excrement, not edible?" If it had received the gift of speech (25.00) at that moment, it would have said, "Don’t talk rubbish, I can smell the unused protein that has got through. And I’m going to get the best out of it I can before I finally give it up. How would you like to do the same?”


41.              Now we are still talking about ‘How to apply what we know’. We are all nice people. We’re all blood-brothers. We are all of one origin, and that origin is spirit - intelligent power. That’s all we are. So we don’t need to fight, we merely need to remember that we are all the same being. Does the right hand fight the nose often? Not with most people?


42.              Chaliapin once knocked himself out for singing a top note flat, and he had a good reason for that. He was trying to teach his nervous system, by aversion therapy, not to sing flat.


43.              Now we have to fight. It is called the ‘Good Fight’. To fight to remember that we are already Absolute. There is no question here of having to realise one’s relation with the Absolute. The relation of yourself with the Absolute is self-relation. You are the Absolute, disguised.


44.              How do you feel if you believe that’s true? We are all modalities of Infinite Sentient Power. That’s what we are. But if we are, does our behaviour coincide with it? … Why not? Because we forget.


45.              We forget our absoluteness because we get caught in mentation. Why do we get caught in that? Because of pleasures and pains. Why do we get those? Because we have got focussed on a body.


46.              How are we going to remember?


47.              Now we have things called ‘symbols’ and the word ‘symbol’ is ‘sym’-‘bol’, ‘seed’-‘will’, the ‘seed of will’. Every ‘symbol’ is ‘a seed of a will’. That means it can grow and become free volition - if you think about it. S-y-m, reverse it, m-y-s – that’s the ground of ‘mystery’. Because in the ‘seed’, is the ‘sym’, there is a mystery. You can’t see an oak tree in an acorn can you? … No.


48.              I was sitting one August in a garden in the country, and flying about were seeds all over the place. You could not see what they would become. And some pods were turning inside out and throwing them about and they were cracking. It was very hot. And each one could, potentially, become a tall plant and make flowers and throw them about. But you could not see that in the seeds. When you get hold of a seed and take it to pieces with a little knife, looking for the mysterious flower, it is not there. No amount of cutting of seeds or human brains will disclose the ‘see-cret’; the ‘mist-ery’ of the ‘sym’, of the ‘seed’. There is a will hidden in every seed.


49.              Now once upon a time, long, long, ago, there was none of what we call ‘organised language’, as we now know it. That is, language made workable between people, and within the individual, for self-analysis. There was none. You simply grunted. You met another fellow going through the forest, “Grrr, grrr … Uh! …arg.” … Now, it’s very difficult to produce a metaphysical proposition, like that. But there is an urge, an appetival urge, to create ever more and more efficiency.


50.              [Question from audience: How is that for? (…?...) encapsulated in what is potentially (…?...) Why is it ..)]


51.              You said ‘How’, now you said ‘Why’, Which do you want answering?


52.              [How.]


53.              How. Well ‘how’ means the manner thereby, doesn’t it? And the answer is by self-precipitation of the field of the Infinite. Now let us define the field. A field is a zone of influence of a force. Right? …Have you got that? A field is a zone of influence of a force.


54.              Now imagine an infinitely extended field (30.00), a zone of influence of which is infinite. Now - How is it going to encapsulate? There is only one possibility, it must move inwards. ... Mustn’t it? … If it goes out it won’t encapsulate, will it? … No. …


55.              So we have two functions, one called gathering, and the other called scattering. If you go outwards, disseminating - you throw your seeds that way - you lose them. If you focus; bring them to a point; you gather them, they can begin, by your inner concentration, to germinate.


56.              Germination.  When you see … you do your Mung beans and other things. … When you get some dry beans and put them in water and wait a bit, a little shoot comes out. Where does it come from, outside or inside? It comes from inside. But does it? Because in fact, what you are calling ‘inside’ is the centre of an infinite field, transcending absolutely that little seed. It’s ‘inside-out’; ‘outside-in’.


57.              The Field itself has no inner or outer. The concepts ‘inner’ and ‘outer’ belongs in the ‘time-matter thinking process’. You must encapsulate: that is, draw a circle or a sphere, before you can talk about ‘inner’ or ‘outer’. If there is no encapsulation, there is no ‘inner’ and no ‘outer. So before encapsulation, ‘inner-outer’ must be used simultaneously, or not at all.


58.              Now we’ve been carried away by mentation, by desire, by body conditions, and we are to remind ourselves that these are not the causative forces, they are inferior forces. The causative force is in the will.


59.              Now we go back. ‘How?’ ‘How’ means ‘by what manner of procedure’. ‘Why’ means ‘for what psychological inherent reason’. But  ‘how’ means ‘what mechanical procedure shall be used to retain this condition’. The answer is, by remembering – ‘re-member’. We are members of an infinite continuum of sentient power. Philosophers call it the Absolute; in India they call it Brahman; the infinitely extended sentient power. We have to remember that. We are’It’. Aham - I, Brahman. That extended power is here, intended - this is intention – that is extension. We are all points of ‘in-tention’ in an ‘ex-tension’. But extension posits intention, and intention fulfils the purpose of extension.


60.              To those who drive in, there is a tendency to drive outwards. To drive inwards to individuation is simultaneously to drive outwards to transcendence of the limitation. Individuation is limitation. We individuate to be different, and then we express ourselves to join in with the other differences.


61.              Now, by means of a symbol we can remind ourselves more efficiently and more conveniently than by any other way.


62.              I was talking to a masonic friend of mine last week. But he wasn’t very well, so I said to him, “Do you do your Ashlar exercise?” And he looked at me as if he had never heard of it, so I reminded him. Think of yourself as a cube. Now sit inside the cube and put a dot there. Call that dot your essential individuation. “Oh that is a good idea.” Now think there is a surface above me, call it ‘powers superior’; there is a surface below me, ‘powers inferior’. There are to my right, my developed talents; and to the left, my undeveloped talents; and in front of me my future; and behind me my past. I am sitting in the middle of this cube with six faces. The word ‘six’ is from the same base as the word ‘existence’. ‘To exist’ is ‘to stand out’; and ‘to stand out’ is ‘to be six faced’. You do have powers above you; you do have powers below you; (35.00) you do have talents developed; and you have deficiencies not yet developed; and you have future; and past. And you are right in the middle of these six - so you’re the Seventh! God rested on the Seventh Day. You rest on the point of your individuation, not on the point of your empirical, ego because that is not in the centre.


63.              Now you know when you draw the circle to represent your being - your skin surface - and a stimulus comes from outside, a response comes from centre, and joins the external stimulus, and there is a little rotation, and that is the ground of your egotism. That thing is peripheral - your ego is a construct from outside. It’s half way between the innermost true self, and the outer world. When the innermost true self and the outer world impinge, they spin, and make an ego. That egoic structure is: empirical; mentational; temporal; and on the way to materialisation. It has no power whatever of itself. All the power that appears to be in it is from centre. It is the interaction. It is like the Freudian ‘Self ‘between the Id power (sexual) and the Super Ego (moral power), and here is myself in the middle, jammed. But I have got no egoic self except the interaction of a world precipitated from infinity, reacting with infinity at centre.


64.              Now by means of this cube … I can sit inside it all day, or I can simplify it like you would empirically. And make the cube, and then spin it, and wait long enough and all the corners will wear off, and you’ll have a sphere. So, to represent this sphere, just draw a circle on your paper, and put a dot in the middle. On the dot in the middle write ‘I’, and do a little drawing of an eye - an observer - in the middle. And that is ‘I’, that is the letter ‘I’.


65.              Now the ‘O’ around that ‘I’, is the peripheral interest of the ‘I’. It is as far as that ‘I’ has bothered to interest itself. Your interests go out from you, into infinity, to a distance determined by your self-definitions. You define yourself, and you define how far your definition will become effective. Other people are doing the same thing.


66.              Now you are precipitating your world without knowing it. You think there is a world and you go about, looking, “I must understand the world.” That is exactly the opposite of what you ought to be doing. What you have to do is understand ‘You’. Why, for what reason, are you precipitating precisely this kind of world? This kind of world which you precipitate, is an egoic world. Why are you making it this shape, and not that shape? You have a motive in you. There’s a great non-dualistic rule, ‘If you get into trouble, don’t bother about the trouble, bother about you’. Say, “What am I doing? What is my appetite in this situation that has led me, unthinkingly, into the position where I have to think?” The ‘ma’ has led ‘ra’. ‘Mara’ means ‘death’; ‘rama’ means ‘wake up and live’. When the ancients made mantras like that, they made them on purpose, quite deliberately.


67.              The whole of non-dualism is in four words. Those words are, ‘deha’ – d-e-h-a; n-a-m-a - ‘nama’; k-o-h-a-m - ‘koham’. So we have put an ‘H’ in the ‘nama’ (the hierarchy) – ‘naham’, and we have named ourself. ‘Nama’ means ‘name’; ‘aham’ means ‘I’. ‘Resi naham’, ‘I have named myself’. Before that, I divided myself - ‘deham’ (40.00) - from the Infinite to give myself a little elbowroom. I must have elbowroom if I am going to do something. So the first word said by the Absolute in the Hindu system of thought was ‘Bhu’ - ‘Let there be space’ - ‘B-H-U’ - make space, elbowroom. ‘Deham’ - divide from the Infinite and posit myself. Then ‘Naham’- name myself. Then ‘Koham’ - gather myself. Then ‘Soham’ - after all it was only myself. I divided myself from my Absoluteness; I named myself as separate; I gathered myself together to the best of my ability. And then, if I complete my self-gathering together what do I find? Nothing, except myself - the divider; the namer; the gatherer – myself!


68.              So, the whole of the highest philosophy that’s ever been written on earth is contained in four words, and those words are based on one word ‘Aham’ – ‘I’.


69.              Now imagine, that you never, ever, in the whole of your existence, have, or ever will know, anything other than ‘you modalising you’. Can you see the truth of that? Never have you ever known anything other than you, and the modalities that you, with your appetite, have imposed on you. Now why should I go looking for enlightenment elsewhere? It is inside. That is what Krishnamurti meant when he said, “There aren’t any gurus. You are the hidden guru. Find it. It’s on the inside. It’s you.” You are the self-determinate. You are the naughty little boy that stole the ice-cream. You did it. But who called it stealing, except somebody else who wanted the ice-cream.


70.              We are living in a world where definition – division - has been made by interested appetites. And then these interested appetites have defined situations, and have put ‘Trespassers Will Be Prosecuted’, or ‘Private - Keep Out!’ ‘Beware of the Guard Dog’. I know a guard dog with only three legs. … I think Ken knows the same dog actually.


71.              Now, we have to remember, and we cannot remember without a symbol. Why?


72.              Now a symbol condenses fantastical histories of thought. Look at the word ‘God’, three little letters, G-O-D. It’s meaning is ‘consolidated potential, self-delivering’. First it consolidates itself - the Absolute - and in so doing makes itself into a closure, a seed. That’s why the Hebrew ‘samech’ takes the place of a letter ‘O’ in English. It’s really a hidden secret hierarchy in a seed, and then if you divide it, it will become an oak tree - or anything else you care to mention.


73.              A God is a being who is totally self-precipitating, totally self-concealing; totally self-developing. Anyone that can do that is worthy of the name ‘God’. That’s why Jesus said, “You’re all Gods.” The trouble is you are what is called, ‘dumb, clottish type Gods’! You don’t know that you’re Gods. Why not? Because you haven’t been told. You’ve been told that you are not. “Keep that God-fellow away over there, and don’t you get the idea you’re God, that’s a heresy.” But you are God. Because absolutely, there isn’t anything else but God. Where you are, as you are, you are God being you. Does that mean you can do anything stupid you like? No it does not, because you can’t even think of all the stupidities that you might do because of inertia. Inertia is a terrible enemy.


74.              Now, by understanding the nature of the symbol, (45.00) you can remind yourself economically, daily.


75.              The cross in the circle is called the Master Symbol of all symbols. In all religions we find it appearing and re-appearing, over and over again. In Buddhism it appears as a wheel, and you just cross it like that, and then you say, “Well, this way is the George Cross, and it means ‘balanced power’. But if I turn it like that I make an ‘X’ in the circle and that means ‘rotatory powers’. And the George Cross means ‘eternal, noumenal truth’, that cannot be changed; and the one with the Andrew Cross, like an ‘X’ in it, means the same truth, now spinning, creating time. So the two crosses together, one above the other - the George there and the Andrew there - symbolise ‘eternity and time’.


76.              Now when we get a cross in a circle and understand its meaning, we have saved many, many, many fat volumes of philosophy and reduced it to one simple symbol.


77.              Now the circle meant ‘Woman’, and I do not mean terrestrial female on earth. I mean the principle, absolute, of total receptivity. That is called ‘The Woman’, ‘Sophia’. ‘Absolute wisdom’ is there - total receptivity. You draw a circle on the paper and you think, “This is woman.” But not merely the woman on earth, but ‘the cosmic principle of receptivity’. And then we draw the cross and say, ”This means Man.”


78.              You know, ‘cross’ and ‘crutch’ and ‘the genital organ’ of the time-matter man are all symbolised in that little cross. But it doesn’t simply mean ‘the appendage of flesh on a time-matter body’. It means ‘the principle of initiative’. When you make that cross, you draw a horizontal and drive a vertical through it. The horizontal is the principle of passivity, and the vertical is the principle of activity; initiative; decision. And they come into being simultaneously. And that means that the male symbol - a vertical laid on a horizontal coming to be simultaneously - is a hermaphrodite. Now that’s is a very cunning piece of thought. You find it in the Hebrew name of God, for which Jews would substitute ‘Adonai’ – ‘Lord’. Four letters which mean ‘he-hu - he-she’. The vertical is male and the horizontal is female - but they’re inside the circle, which is female. So it means that the cross symbolises ‘infinite absolute true form’, and it’s posited itself as a world with a limit - the circle round it. Now that is called the ‘Divine Hermaphrodite’; the ‘Heavenly Sophia’; the ‘Messiah’; the ‘Double-Poled Will-Thought’. The appetival drive is the circle, and the cross is the form.


79.              Now how many fat books could we write, using nothing except that cross in a circle? Actually, an infinity of books, we could write. And all the books that have ever been written on philosophy, are commentaries on that one symbol. Now we can say, ”Oh! Well, don’t let on. We’ll disguise it, take the cross out of the circle and put it underneath, and that makes the sign of Venus. And let’s pretend that the meaning is different, and then we can fool some other people into thinking that we don’t know the thing they know.”


80.              So we are all going about concealing our intent. Do you know what our intent is? Fulfilment of self-appetite. And we are all going about secretly doing it and feeling horrible, and amazingly, thinking other people are not doing it! Everybody else is decent; I’m the only criminal.


81.              How do you feel about that? We are all going about, shot through and through with fundamental, appetival, sentient power, absolute, and we have a formal way of disguising it. “I’m not a circle; I’m not a void; I’m not pure receptivity. I have a form - a cross, an identity - which you must recognise.” (50.00)


82.              Peter, haven’t you got a business? Is it you that goes there to see if it is O.K. or another fellow of another name? And, if another fellow went, not of your name and started ordering the girls about, how would you feel? … Pleased? …..Why not? It is just another modality of the Absolute.


83.              […?...]


84.              Supposing the man was afflicted with a terrible disease called ‘Absolute Honesty”! And he came and went there before you did and he started working very, very hard, and got all the girls working far more efficiently than you do.


85.              Peter: That would be O.K.


86.              That would be O.K. … And give you the money and you would forgive him. Such forgiveness!


87.              I am saying there is no other kind of forgiveness in the whole universe. People pretend there is but there isn’t.


88.              Now by means of this symbol, we can remind ourselves - just a little line, right there. You can put it on your forehead if you like, there. And whenever you look at anybody, look through your symbol. They can feel you know, and say, “What is he up to? He is doing something unusual, and he is looking at me through a symbol.”


89.              But I tell you this, there was never a great man on earth, from Hercules or anybody else that was not doing precisely that, and it was that what made him what was called ‘Great’. He never forgot his symbol.


90.              Now, what we need is a super-symbol. We have got one, a cross in a circle. And then we need some other symbols which are derived from it. Shall I draw some?


91.              Somebody’s stolen all my lovely pens! Who is it? Which criminal is it? … Maybe it was an absent-minded helper who stole my packet of pens. I am left with only one. What colour is it? …


92.              Now, Heraclitus said, “All is fire.” Red symbolises fire. There is a primary symbol. It means all and nothing – ‘Zero’. But, inside it, where I haven’t yet drawn, is the same as the outside where I haven’t yet drawn. So the inside and the outside are identical.


93.              Now supposing that is precipitated, by an act of will, at right angles to this screen. And we have to account, “How did it get there?” Some being willed to do it.


94.              Now, the original circle that encapsulated the universe was produced in exactly the same way. Some ‘sentient power’ willed to make a circle – like that - a sphere. This is two-dimensional, so it’s a circle; and there, is a primary symbol of encapsulation. When you look at it, you can’t help feeling that it means ‘inside-outside’, ‘inclusion-exclusion’. There is something inside there, and there is an Infinite beyond. What is enclosed is finite, and what is excluded from the enclosure is Infinite. Now, we want to make this into a super symbol. So, let’s think about it.


95.              Funnily enough, before I drew it, do you know I drew it around an imaginary dot in the middle? Didn’t I control the circle, by having a dot there, and keeping the same distance, away, roughly?


96.              The ‘I’, the Observer, posited himself first and then ran round himself.


97.              Now I am going to put a dot there in the middle and that’s the ‘I’. Now when I put the dot in there, can you immediately see that your mind begins to change? You have a symbol there, and the symbol says there is exclusion of infinity, inclusion of finity; and there is a point of reference in the centre; and between that centre and that perivity, That ‘perivity’ I said - the ‘V’ means to develop. (55.00) There is going to be developed a relationship between the central point of my precipitate individuality and the environing circle.


98.              So that circle now indicates the limits of my environment, but that dot symbolises me. That is used in astronomy for the symbol of the sun. Because there is the sun, and there is the orbit of attendant planet. And it says hierarchy: it says wherever there is a centre, something is going round it. And the centre precipitated the circle. Because that was in my mind before I drew the circle.


99.              Now, I want to represent activity and passivity, so I draw a vertical through through there, and a horizontal. And I draw my primordial wheel. That’s the great Wheel of Fortune. Would you believe there’s a ‘wheel of fortune’? Doesn’t ‘fortune’ mean ‘strength in unity’? ‘Fort’-‘une’ -  ‘strength in unity’.


100.          Now, I now have a circle quartered; when we’ve quartered a circle we call it a mandala.


101.          Now, I said we can start with this master symbol, and draw other symbols out of it. So I will do that – I’ll take the circle, and I’ll take the cross and put it underneath, and that’s ‘Venus’. And I’ll take the same circle and I’ll put the lines above it, like that. But remember that when I drew this on a clay tablet thousands of years ago, and then dropped my tablet and it broke, and there was on one bit that, and on the other bit that, I didn’t know whether it wasn’t the same symbol. So I modified this one … like that … and called it ‘Mars’. That’s merely a differentiator from the’Venus’. The ‘Mars’ means ‘war’, and the ‘Venus’ means ‘love’. Now I now have, out of my original thing, two other things - one meaning ‘love’, and the other meaning ‘war’. And they are derived from my original symbol.


102.          So I now want two other symbols. I will take the same thing and I will put a cross above it … like that … But this time I will divide the circle in half, and then I’ll make what is called the cursive - that is, rapidly written form of the same thing - and I will say, “Here is my cross, and here is my half circle.” And then I will pair this off with another one. Here is my half circle and there is my cross. We’ve now written ‘Saturn’ and ‘Jupiter’ haven’t we? And we’ve derived them from the master symbol. … So we are not doing too badly, are we? All we are doing is breaking down the Mandala into its constituent implications.


103.          And now we are going to go further. We’ve got the circle, which we had, and the dot, and that is the ‘Sun’. Then we will take the circle, and shadow it like this. It has now become the ‘Moon’. And then, for economy’s sake, don’t bother wasting your time drawing the shady part, just draw the crescent. We have now got a pair; a pair; and another pair - three pairs. So what we want now is the symbol to mix these together, and this symbol is a half circle (that’s this one), and a cross (like that), and we can either put the ‘O’ down there, or, what is more convenient for cursive work, we can do that. … That’s ‘Mercury’. … Now ‘Mercury’ is the only unpaired one.


104.          We have now a Master symbol that tells us exactly how to conduct our lives. The first symbol says,  “Remember this, this is a Master Symbol. All beings have periphery, all beings are bound.” ‘To be’ is ‘to be bound’. The letter Beth, the second letter of the Hebrew Alphabet means a house; a dwelling; an encapsulation. You are bound-in if you exist (60.00). All beings have a certain amount of initiative, free energy - the vertical. And all beings are passive, or receptive, to blows from other beings, similarly constituted. And therefore we abstract those and say we will have the sign for lovingness; and the sign for anti-love - making war; a sign for possessive greed; and a sign for open-handed generosity; and a sign for radiant giving of light and information to people – ‘constant’; and a sign for variability or phasicity; and a sign for all of them together.


105.          Now we can arrange these … by drawing ourselves a circle like this … and cut the circle … … like this. Then we’ll have Jupiter up there; Saturn there; we’ll have the Sun there; the Moon there; and we’ll have Venus there; and Mars there. …. And we’ll put, to remind us, that the whole thing is Mercury.


106.          We have now extended our Master Symbol. And it says that, if there is war, it’s because somebody loves something, and is trying to get hold of it. And if there is love, the person who is doing the loving, will fight to defend the thing it loves. And if there is radiant shinings, constant uniform illumination, there will be periodicity, because people can’t stand being in the light all the time. And if there is open-handed generosity, everything will disperse to infinity, so there must be a possessive Saturnine grab, to stop total dispersal. And if there is grabbing and greed, that greed is in order to be open-handedly generous. Like the multi-millionaire said recently, when questioned about, “Why he got so much money gathered together by such methods?”, And he said, “In order to be able to create charitable institutions, and be generous thereto.”


107.          Now we cannot do anything without doing both of the opposites, and all of them are mixed up continuously by this Mercurial spin. So when we look at our Master symbol, is it not obvious that we can remind ourselves, of anything whatever that we may do? Can you see that? There is nothing that we haven’t covered in those symbols.


108.          If you take the half circle, and then reflex it the other way, that’s the letter ‘S’ – ‘Serpent’. And the serpent goes this way, and then that way, this way and that way. It means it will go one way, and then reflex and go another way, to fool you. There is no thought, no feeling, no will, no love, no hate - that is not contained in that Master Symbol.


109.          If you go to Jersey for your holidays you find it chiselled all over the paving stones. Every step you take you’re treading on it. I never found anybody there who could tell me who did it, but they are there. Somebody spent an awful lot of time chiselling crosses and circles. It is simply a mnemonic.


110.          Now if you don’t remind yourself, you cannot control yourself.


111.          [Question: ….. (?)……….]


112.          You are … you are furnished with the concepts that you acquired before you died. Those ideas that you embraced before you died are your ‘Heaven or Hell’, according to their nature. (65.00) You furnish yourself in life with the ideas to which you adhere. That’s your mental furniture.


113.          [Remark from audience: …..(?)……]


114.          Matter is only energy. Ideas are energy. A formed idea is a symbol. If you have an idea in your head at the point of death and you hang on to that idea; you are the embodied idea and your wisdom is the wisdom of the thing to which you have brought yourself into identification.


115.          {Eugene talks with member of audience, the subject of which appears to be, “How does one remember at death?” – BH}


116.          …. Can you remember? …. … How? … The method is – ‘present yourself with the symbol’. How? means, ‘By what method’. The method is, you present yourself with the symbol. Why do you think they give extreme unction to a dying person? It’s to remind him he is a dying person, and give him a symbol to hang onto. What is ‘The Tibetan Book of the Dead’ about; or ‘The Egyptian Book of the Dead’? It is nothing but symbols to remind you, at the point of death, what we have to do is find the Master Concept and work on that One, so from that One, we can draw all the others, like rabbits out of hat. And then, if you’ve got only one concept, you are saved ‘Absolutely’. What is that supreme concept that guarantees ‘Absolute Salvation’? - The concept that you are the mysterious ‘Self’ that you are looking for.


117.          People say, “Lo here!” and, “Lo there!” and the ‘Kingdom of Heaven’ is you! What are you looking for? You are looking for you! And you are being misdirected by mis-education. You are looking outside for something. But you are looking for you: to know all power is inside you, to precipitate anything whatever that you will to do – but it’s inside. If you go off to Chimborazo, Cotopaxi, or somewhere else, to consult a solicitor about what to do, he won’t tell you to look at you. He will rush off to the law books, and the precedents, and it’ll involve you in a long, long expense. A total waste, because the real solution of power and intelligence is ‘You knowing You’. There is no other guru, only you on the inside looking at ‘you’; about your motives. You are ‘Rama’. You know, ‘Rama’ is ‘God Incarnate’.


118.          You are ‘ra’ - you are discriminative intelligence: you are ‘ma’ - you are appetite. You know that your appetite could be exactly co-incident with your discriminative intelligence; or do you sometimes think that your appetite is a nuisance; or do you sometimes think that your intelligence is a nuisance for interfering with your membership of the Diner’s Club. These two are always ‘at war in time’, but they are not ‘at war in eternity’.


119.          Now we have to use that Master Symbol in order to remember. And if we put it on a post card; and put it on the desk; or in a handbag, where we can see it, and bother to look at it - and this is the hard bit - and when you have looked at it, recognise it, and say, “Oh! That’s that symbol that is supposed to remind me. Important wasn’t it? Why did I put that in my bag?” So you turn to the blessed wife, who is embodied Sophia, and say, “What is the card in my wallet? Did you put it there to remind you dear, of your intelligence symbol? … Oh! That’s it! … Thank you darling!”


120.          The fact is that we are surrounded by symbols that mean ‘absolute salvation’ and we know it, but we don’t say it, but we don’t repeat it. We don’t repeat the mantra: you don’t say, “This sign means me. I am the encapsulated one. I am the one of initiative and receptivity.” A very good way of keeping vampires out is like that. Because you know vampires can’t get you, unless you invite them in. You know your midnight horror films, don’t you? No vampire ever seduced a maiden (70.00) without her thinking, “I wonder what it would be like?” That opens the door.


121.          [Question: “What happens to compassion?”]


122.          Compassion? … For the vampire? … Do you mean, don’t stick stakes in their heart?


123.          [Audience comment: “Just give them a pint.”]


124.          A pint of what? What deadly concoction have you got at the back of your mind? You’re trying to drag vampires into not being vampires aren’t you? You’re an undisguised ‘do-gooder’ when you say that. That is one of the biggest poisons in the world, because it is ‘not fair on vampires’.


125.          You know there are fishes that go for a ride by sticking themselves on sharks and so on? And they go for rides, thousands of miles. If you said to them, you know, “Don’t do that! You are imposing on brother shark.” You say, “Does he know?” “Of course he does because when he gets near a shallow place with a rock he tries to scrape me off.” And the suckerfish says, “Yes, well I leave then, until he’s finished, and then I will go back.”


126.          Now would you believe this? It is said in the very highest philosophies, “There is no good and there is no evil but relativeness to somebody making a definition.”


127.          Do you like to think you are a nice fellow who would do good to a vampire? But really you are trying to drag that vampire into not sucking your blood. You will give him a pint of tetanus, and hope he won’t gulp your blood. I can assure you all the vampires I’ve ever met know the difference between beer and blood; and money and ‘baccy’; and women and song, otherwise they’re not fit to be proper vampires.


128.          This is a terrible heresy, this attempt to identify with the do-gooder who simply want to reform all the enemies and make them into friends, so he can have his own way, and remove conflict. That is Nirvana; that is Pralaya; that’s absolute quiescence; that is non-existence; that is no world.


129.          How do you feel about that? Do you still want to give the vampire a drink, or would you rather wake up, and don’t fall for ‘vampire’s propaganda’? What do you think? You are nodding. but are you agreeing? … You think so? …Which one, mentationally or conjectionally? …


130.          Right, we’ve got a Master Symbol. We have to use it, and not just ten minutes a day, but all day. All the time we are awake, and if possible, extend it into sleep. We are to remember that we are ‘The Absolute’ ourselves, modalised in a specific way of our existence.


131.          Every good is an evil in another place. Every evil is a good. The idea that ‘goods’ have to kill ‘evils’ and get rid of them is utter rubbish.


132.          We have to go back. We are talking about how to turn theoretical, intelligent knowledge into activity, so that we don’t behave stupidly. We are not one minute greedy and grabbing, and the next minute sloppily generous to compensate, and quieten our conscience. We are not one minute making love, and the next making war. We are not one-minute shining lights, and the next obscuring them. We are doing all simultaneously, in perfect balance, and the sign of that perfect balance is Mercury. And Mercury (the Roman) is the Greek Hermes, which is the Tehuti of the Egyptians, which is the Messiah of the Hebrews. The perfect balance of all powers simultaneously co-held together.


133.          Does it sound like hard work to get it? Only for one reason – ‘Inertia’. You have got habits: habits of body; habits of emotional attitude; habits of time thinking (mentation); habits of conceptual adherence like “I’m a dualist.” “I’m a non-dualist.” But no habits of free initiative, because you can’t have a habit of that. For that one, you have to gather yourself together and decide. … …


134.          How does it feel? … …


135.          I’ll let you go away and think about it. (75.20)