The text of a talk given by Eugene Halliday in Liverpool (15)
There are a number of questions here. One is related to the Non-dualism we have discussed before:- “Does the idea of the Non-dual deny the existence of God?”
Non-dualism and Monism we will keep in the mind for the moment. I have also been asked to clarify the difference between Ideation. Mentation and Form.
There is another question on architecture and the significance of particular architectural forms.
Finally “An attempt to extend consciousness, the application of general laws, methods from which you can expect good results.”
We will try and telescope all these questions together. We want some general methods of extending consciousness, we want the relationship between Dualism, Non-dualism and Monism, and something to do with the significance of architectural form.
We will start with a circle. When we draw a line closing itself we have apparently created something. The word create, the root KRA (C and K are interchangeable, K is a hard C) and the letter T. This tri-literal root KRA when read Hebraically is ARK. In order to create we have to circumscribe. Without circumscription we cannot create, the two terms are interchangeable. In the process of drawing the circle we have apparently excluded the paper outside the circle and we included the paper within the circle. So we say that the circumscription simultaneously includes and excludes. But if we imagine this paper to extend infinitely, endlessly, then outside the form there is no further form and inside it the paper can be considered to be a zone, internal to which, all formal relation must take place.
We have IDEATION, this is the word the Greeks used for form, and the Latin word FORM and the other word used by Gurdjieff, MENTATION, and we are going to talk about the relation of these three, Ideation, Form and Mentation in relation to this circumscription.
Form essentially refers to the circumscribed. F changes to P, the R is constant, and we remember the Pi-ratio which is at the basis of all circumscription. Form is a Latin word and we have said that the Latins were concerned with dominion. When we talk about Empire then the Pi-Ra or ration function of this circle can be seen as the centre of authority and the limit of empire is the limit of authority and it is the same with the radius of this circle. All form is simply the circumscription of a zone, internal to which, activities are going to take place. Outside the formed we cannot discuss. Dis-Cuss means “strike two together.” Cuss is ‘strike’, causus, ‘to strike, cause’; dis is ‘two.’ Discuss implies duality. If we do not draw anything outside the circle, another circle, we cannot discuss. To discuss we must have two entities and strike them together and get a result.
When we are talking about form, if we say, “Let this circle represent the form that which there is no bigger,” imagine a form, a circle of which there is no bigger, and call it God, as one of the theologians said. The form is the O, the circumscription, the rotation of the radius round. If we imagine that we have a positive charge and a negative charge and the negative rushes rapidly round, as in an Hydrogen atom, if it runs round so quickly that no external entity could get across its orbit before it had time to come round and knock it out, then that zone would be opaque or solid to a being attempting to invade it. Solidity is velocity. The O in the word form is this circle and the F (which is the P) is in the middle. The P propagated is F for force, and as far as that goes (as for as it goes, if you like), up to the limits of the substance that it dominates is FORM. So FORM is ‘posited force ordering a substance.’
The fundamental idea is the ordering of a substance by a positing force.
In the word idea we have a concept, id which is the same as the English word ‘it,’ and ‘ea’ which occurs in earth. This ‘ea’ is the fundamental, substantial aspect of the universe, the goddess, the passive aspect. So the Greek IDEA meant ‘that by which the substance is analysed.’ There is no consideration in the word ‘idea’ for this Pi-ratio function which has to do with the psychological bias of the Romans to dominate up to a certain limit. So the world ‘idea’ is an analytical idea, it is a concept of cutting into things regardless of their shape. It would produce an idea if you took a stick and cut it into bits, the idea of parts of a stick. But when we consider the form of the stick we have to consider it as occupying a certain amount of space. So that, the word ‘idea’ became more naturally limited to mental processes because we can cut thins in the mind without them being three-dimensional and we tend to use the word ‘form’ for external things because of this circumscription, the limiting factor.
Mentation is from the root ma, to measure. You can also see the word ‘men’ in it. Man is so-called because he measures. The T and the second T, symbolise the crossing of forces in the mind, which crossings are what is meant by mentation. One idea cuts across another and in the process, analyses it. If I write down the word DOG and CAT the two interact in a certain way and generate an idea of animal out of them. We begin to understand them when we begin to understand the category higher than both which includes both. If I say, “Knife into a piece of French Bread or something,” that is another mode of analysis and when I am, doing this in the mind I take the idea of knife and put it on the idea of bread and the idea of bread involves it being softer than the idea of the steel blade, so knife into bread goes cut. Bread into knife does not go. This process of lapping ideas over in the mind is called mentation, which simply means evaluating, the counting of the ideas which are forms in the mind. Gurdjieff was fond of using this word, (mentation) although it is an ordinary dictionary word, because it was not very popular and he wanted to impart a little stimulus to the mind to consider things in a different way. If he had merely said, “The thinking process,” people would have thought that they knew what he meant, whereas, using this word, although it was a dictionary word, he was using something that was not so
very, very popular and therefore they knew they had to try to think what mentation was instead of assuming they knew.
The Italian word for city is chitta and that word is derived from and is identical with the Sanskrit word Chitta, which means a city. If you look at a map, at a city, this particular city, every cell in the brain has sent a message, regardless, just radiating from its own centre outwards. Every other cell has sent a message and there is no order in it, no town planning. Consequently the whole thing is confused. We cannot see the structure of that city. It is higgledy-piggledy. There is no order
To make order we must O-R-D. O is a circle, R is the letter which means differentiation, D means division. We must divide according to the natural division, the natural tendency to differentiate If we divide an apple intelligently we do so by taking a knife and cutting it through the middle. If we divide an apple unintelligently we could do it by putting it in a mangle, and if we had only one apple and never opened it before and put it through the mangle we would not know much about the internal structure of the apple. But if we cut the apple through the middle we will see a skin and then a pulpy stuff and then a hard bit and then some seeds. That kind of analysis means that the apple is differentiated. There is a skin, different degree of hardness in that protective part; a soft pulpy stuff, then a hard bit again for the seeds and the differentiation internal to the apple has already been accomplished by nature. So then we begin to divide it according to the natural division. When we take the entity, that O is the apple, we look at the way it has been differentiated by nature and then we divide all the different things carefully on their lines of natural cleavage. Then we have made a natural analysis and we are beginning to introduce order because we area looking at the natural lines of cleavage. You can analyse man’s leg with a chopper very, very quickly but it does not improve your knowledge of how the arteries and things run down. You could not really study nervous physiology with an axe. Schopenhauer did it and it made him pessimistic.
So, in the introduction of order we have to take the entity, see the natural divisions, differentiation of its parts, put them into categories, divide them along the lines of natural cleavage. Then we have another kind of mental pattern. Instead of having it higgledy-piggledy with all the cells broadcasting their own personal messages, we set up a central concept. The central concept that all order depends upon circumscription and that there is a force, active, entering and dividing and there is a substance of the thing itself, passive, being divided. This is our central concept: we put that inside the mind.
Here is a diagram of a man’s skull and we proceed on the basis of this to order, to draw a mark in. First, one at the front, then another in the middle and another one zone in the back. When we put the circle in and quarter it, which is the meaning of the Mandala of the Indians, we are introducing order into what would otherwise be a very confused force relation.
So this concept of IDEA is simply an entity by means of which we cut into things and separate them.
The idea of FORM is a circumscription, a circumscribed zone, substantial, differentiated by force.
MENTATION is a serial process of introducing order into the system and if we have a central concept we can introduce a lot of order in a relatively short space of time.
Now we have tie all this up with the idea of development. It is not enough to get a man’s head and put in his forebrain, the central control concept, we have to get it down the spinal column, through the emotional self, yes and no, like and dislike, into the volitional centre and then, if we are lucky, it might make the legs walk. And it might even, at the emotional level, conjure up some executive powers.
The essential thing is, when you have got the control concept, to begin to apply it and the only way to apply an idea is, first, to emote about it. We cannot make and idea, as such, work , unless we feel. We must feel very, very strongly that we are for this idea or that we are against the idea. If we want to build a new building in the town centre we must be against the existing building, otherwise we are not going to build a new one. When we have felt very, very strongly, then we push the energy down into the volitional centre and from there a reaction starts and builds backwards and the eyes and ears and so on will begin to look and listen and get data from outside in the line of the will’s direction. So the application of the governing concept must go through emotion to volition. We cannot do it any other way consciously.
A child, when it is born, starts the other way. When it is extruded from the mother it is a wilful being. William Blake says he came out into the dangerous world, “Hot and piping wild,” and then began to sulk on his mother’s breast because he did not like the passage into this world. He was a volitional being.
That volitional being just wants or goes to sleep. The baby does not have any “noes, not wants,” when it is born. The first stage of the baby is, “I am wanting something to drink,” or “I am sleepy.” And if it were given simply something to drink and allowed to sleep, it would do so and it would not become at a much higher level. But there are various forces acting upon the child. There are forces inherent in the form, in the germ plasm in the child which are already trying to force the child on to another level. And there are forces in the parent acting upon the child, to change its nappy and so on, and these constitute an interruption to the spontaneous volition of the child, and consequently, the child wakes up, has a drink of milk, (that gives pleasure) sends another message down, “Have another drink of milk,” and so on. When there is enough in the belly it is called satisfied and full and it goes to sleep and digests. But there comes a time in the middle of its sleep when a child is wakened up by a well-trained, civilized mother because there has been a theory imposed upon the parent about feeding times. So the spontaneous sleeping process of the child is interrupted and it is made to rise in consciousness. This will is not individually conscious. It is then forced up and because it has been acted upon from outside and its own spontaneous rhythm broken, it passes into screaming, negating. And upon being awakened by this externally derived order, the negation then climbs up into the head and the eyes look round to see what has caused the interruption. The child then finds that it is the mother and the mother then proceeds to feed it. The child’s position is then ambivalent. It has an attitude towards the mother and that mother has interrupted it. “She is a horrible beast,” and also, “mother is now feeding me, she is wonderful. This duality of the child’s attitude to the parents is going to last the rest of its life and it will extend to other beings too. All beings will be categorised according to the number of pleasures they induce and the number of interferences with the spontaneous volition of the child. But, the child is raising itself in consciousness only because it is being interfered with. To raise the child from merely the volitional level through the emotive into the rational requires quite an amount of energy input from outside and from the germ plasm. Now we have two centres.
We call the horizontal line coming in, the tradition of man coming in and imposing the theory of feeding times and coming straight through the germ plasm. Vertically, coming down, are the forces that would have been called astrological once upon a time. We can call them cosmic forces today because we know that they exist: forces of radiation from outside the solar system and from the solar system itself, they are all coming in and influencing by changing the rhythmic pattern inside the child’s body. There are many forces at work on an individual. The most important one at the stage of the child is the ancestral one coming through the germ plasm which makes it eat and sleep. The next one is the parental one which comes from tradition, imposing on it and forcing it through pain into mentation. And, continuously, the cosmic one is coming down and disposing the body through certain rhythms which are not individually determined. We will examine these later on because they are very important.
The important thing to consider here-now is that we have a volitional centre, which is non-individuated, there is no div in it, that belongs to the top, thinking level. Div, the div in division, the dieu, or God, it doesn’t matter how you spell it unless you want to be very specific about the application, is the same as videre, to see. It is the head part that does the seeing and therefore, the volitional level down below is not in – div- idual. It is aware of its purpose but it not aware that it is aware. It is simply a surging towards unverbalised objects. Later, when we come to examine consciousness and awareness we will find that the word awareness is more valuable for us than consciousness because the word awareness is vaguer in significance than consciousness. Consciousness is more precise and belongs to the intellective rather than to the volitional.
Here then, we have a unity which is non-individuated, there is a ‘one-ness’ in it because it is a vehicle. Outside the circle there is an Infinite Ocean of Power which is pressing through the germ plasm and activating it. But, the push is coming from outside and there is no centre of individual reciprocation so it always comes in below and it is positive. It climbs up from the monistic level into a dualism of liking and disliking. The things that it likes are the things it can assimilate and the things it dislikes are the things it cannot assimilate. The things that it likes it calls ‘good’ and the things that it dislikes it calls ‘bad’. That is the meaning of “The Fall,” in the eating of the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil. The fault in man is to think that the pleasant is good and the unpleasant is the bad, whereas, in fact, both these presuppose each other. The very thing that we call bad is an essential of the thing we call good. The front to the body is good, put the hand on the tummy, nice and soft. The head, the skull, is very hard, the spine, down the back, is hard. So all the front part has to do with the good - the goo-letal life is the good, and it is comfortable, whereas the bones in the spine are very uncomfortable. The spine and the bony parts of the body we would say, astrologically, is Saturnine compression and the part that swells out nicely is the Jupiter part of it. But Jupiter and Saturn, or expansion and contraction presuppose each other. So if this Saturnine is called ‘evil’ by dualists and this Jupiter is called ‘good’ by dualists, it simply means that they have eaten of the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil and not been able to digest it. Both of these things are good: everything that exists in the universe is good, Absolutely, and it must be good because it is absolutely assimilable to the being who can assimilate it. Now, the Absolute does assimilate everything and therefore it is all good to it. But, an individual may have difficulty in assimilating certain things and those things they call ‘bad’. They call them bad because that letter B means a house and A is action and D means division. That is B A D that divides your substance, your house. If you could assimilate it the same thing you would call ‘good.’
On the Firth of Forth Bridge a number of years ago, they discovered some microbes were eating the steel. It was good for the microbes but bad for the bridge. They did not know at that time that microbes can chew such things as metals. But they can and they do. There is no material in the universe that is not assimilable by something, - so there is no absolute evil.
We have to get up from the undifferentiated volitional level, through the duality of pleasure and pain, up this Tree of Life, the spine, until we find the centre of reflection in the head which allows us to reaffirm the unity of the will, the duality of pleasure and pain and the whole process of rationalising. Co-ordinate the three and then we have finished the work. The enemy is a three-fold enemy. We have the enemy which is the Absolute Force coming through the sexual centre specifically; the enemy of another force of emotion appearing as loves and hates; and the enemy of ideas derived from our ancestors. So we have three enemies. If we do not understand these levels of enmity we cannot watch ourselves and improve our level.
Now, suppose we were going to build an architecture and we were, in fact, merely volitional beings, and what would we build? A volitional being, as such, could only surge, he could not do anything else. He would have no reflexive power so he would just build one brick on another, infinitely. It is power but it cannot make anything. If we want to represent it we would use the letter ‘U.’ it feels fine in the surging but it does not ‘make.’ In order to ‘make,’ we have to turn. The U will have to turn round. We could represent this by the figure of a U with an O in the bottom of the turn of the U. The U has to turn and in the process makes an O and that O travels round so that there is always in front of that U an O. This transition round creates the circle and from this we get the arc. From this we get the architecture, once we have learned to rotate. So, in fact, the ground of all architecture is geometry. The Compass, the encompassing zone is the essential mark of it.
Once we have got the circle we have got the principle of unity. If we look at the historical periods when the DOME, St Paul’s, St Peter’s and so on, wherever there is a dome it means ‘to dome.’ Wherever there is a dome made gross material on earth, you can spell it dom if you want and leave it at that. If you put a G in that dome you get a ‘dogma.’ The putting of G into it is the ground, the gross material ideology which justifies the dome. MA is the appetite and ground of the potential measurement, G is the earth, DO is the analysis of the circle. DoG-Ma rests on the first doming.
So, in architecture wherever we see a dome we know that there is dogma there. The church that puts a dome on it has a dogma, some sort of formulation which in effect, aims at circumscribing the believers and, in the act of circumscribing, to segregate the believers from what is outside. So you cannot have a church with a dome, you cannot have an assembly of intelligences choosing a dome unless they intend to enclose it in the believers and in the act of doing so, to exclude, to commit to the everlasting fires those not included in the dome.
Now some architectures show the dome well out of the ground or above the straight line which represents the horizontal. In the symbology where the circle is cut in half and the bottom half is shaded, the bottom half represents the earth and the top is the heaven, intelligence. When we find a dome half out of the horizontal part of it we know that the ‘Heaven Light’ is the idea. In certain architectures, if we get a dome in which the mass of it is sunk well below the horizontal, we know that the whole being is more immersed in matter. So in those architectures where the dome is manifestly sunk into the body of the building, it shows a materialistic being. If we consider intelligence to be rising out of the earth, evolving, then the buildings where the dome is low, just sticking out, as you can see in some oriental buildings, we would say that they were Hamitic, they are materialistic peoples who have just managed to raise the top of their head or intelligence above the earth level. If we find the dome well above the horizontal with a lot of it sticking out, we would say that their intelligence has risen considerably over the earth line. If, on the other hand, we found a dome nearly wholly over the horizontal we would say there is a danger already in such a church, of the intelligence rolling off its base. That would be dangerous. We do not want the intelligence to be completely severed from the body, because then there is a going to be a real separation between intelligence and gross material action.
If then, we remember this, we can begin to look at different architectures, different periods, different nations and realise how much of this integrated, unific being is climbing out of the square, the earth, how much the intelligence of that people has risen above material considerations. The dome itself is really that circumscription. If we shade it in completely black, it is then a dogma, we just put the hard G in the middle.
We have another very, very common form in architecture, the Pyramid. The pyramid symbolises the fact that whoever built it has recognised that the universe is an hierarchical structure, that there degrees in it and that they have based their society on this fact, that every part is dependent on every other part; that there must be more bricks at the bottom and as you go further up the bricks become less and less until, finally, at the very top there is only room for one brick. In the case of the Great Pyramid, the only really significant one, the others are copies, no brick was ever put on the top. The top brick not being put on represented the Infinite Absolute, not to be represented and to remind the Priest-King that there was something to which he was subordinated, as an individual being. He was in a family and above him was the Absolute Force, which manifested itself in the cosmos, in the sidereal, the solar and planetary systems, and he has to remind himself of that fact. He is based on the earth; he is based on the ‘base’ people and the people, in the mass, are called ‘base’ because on them all hierarchies are raised.
When the Pyramid shape is equilateral it is representative of balance and stability. When the pyramid shape is tall, as in the spire, it is a flame emblem and appears in the Gothic. The taller the spire went, the more it meant to say that people were aspiring, trying to get up from the earth line. This aspiration or rising of the breath (pire is also Greek for the fire, for heat,) because the breath is the heating principle of the body and the body is represented in the spires of buildings and you notice when the aspiration of man for matters spiritual begins to decline then the gentlemen in the church below, they think about it. Now, if the spire needs repairing, perhaps the wind has been at it and the death-watch beetle has been at it, they look at it and say, “We don’t care about the Absolute in any case, so instead of repairing it we will just cut it off.” So you see some spires cut down. Then, after a while they think, “Why should it bother to slope at all. Next time it needs repairing we will cut it down and next time, if we can ever finally afford to build a new Church, we will build it like a warehouse.”
Now every architecture represents a psychology of the people who build it and the flat, like the warehouse, represents equality. It represents democracy. So wherever you find a flat roofed church you know that there the people are all God equally. In the non-conformist, they do not have form and the result is formlessness, a lack of hierarchy and then finally, disintegration. You have a committee instead of an hierarchy and then the Absolute is crossed out as a practical proposition and the whole thing falls down into a Sunday tea fight. The meaning of the ‘binding back, ’ the religion, to its source, ceases and the end result is, of course, that the church gets wider and wider, lower and lower until finally nobody bothers to build it.
We have now got the main types: the dome, which signifies the circumscribing, the enclosing and excluding, simultaneously. We have got the triangle which signifies stability and the elongated triangle which signifies aspiration, and the flat roof or equality concept. If we look through the systems of architecture we will find these governing things appearing at different historical periods, and the period at which they appear is significant and always is simply, an extension of the prime architectural sign. So, if you take a given form, look at the meaning of it symbolically, you could then sit down and write the major beliefs of that period from no other data, because it is simply the expression of the zeitgeist. The people are needing something acceptable to them and then the result is a return to a primary geometrical structure. So once again in this matter of architecture, the building by the ‘arc,’ we come to fundamental geometrical symbols. The more we can understand these symbols, the better for our control.
If we write the vowels down, I, E, A, O, U. (ee, eh, ah, ow, oo), ‘ee’ is solid, ‘eh’ is liquid, ‘ah’ is heat. The five are going to appear in our organism. There must be a body (solid) to make life. There must be some circulation (eh) in it, there must be an animating principle, (ah), the heat in it. There must be a form of comprehension (ow) in it. There must be a force ‘going’ in it, nourishing it (oo). There must also be a general principle of differentiation in it (R) and it must have a boundary, (B).
You have now got seven symbols and if we look in certain mystical literatures we would find a lot of mystical writers juggling these symbols.
I = Solid, material.
E = Liquid.
A = Heat, energy.
O = Comprehension.
U = Nourishment.
R = Differentiation.
B = Boundary.
Every Be-ing is a being, circumscribed. The original form of the letter B was a circle. Later this was squared off and then divided into two half circles as we now know it. The R, ar-r-r-r, the rattling of the tongue, is a differentiation of this being. Every being must have a boundary and must be internally differentiated organically. There must also be a comprehensive something in it that causes all the differentiating functions not to disintegrate. It must differentiate but not disintegrate. There must be a liquid to circulate, to wash away the by-products of actions. There must be an energy or heat to make it work. It must partake of this material world and there must be something in this liquid, some principles of nourishment. You could amuse yourself by compounding some magical names out of these letters. And you would be surprised to find those magical names occurring in certain manuscripts.
We now have a short way of considering particulars in relation to what we have been talking about. That letter ‘I’ or ‘i’ which in English is the dot over the letter, the line has been put below it to indicate the dot. In Hebrew it is a Yod י, it is the jotta ‘I’ of the Greeks. It is the smallest letter and all solids are made of particles, the tiniest particles gathered together in groups So a body of material is made of particles , but a particle is an icle-part. Icle is a termination meaning ‘little, small.’ The part is the Pi-ra –t again, the rotation, and all rotations within the big rotation are ‘parts.’ You can see this in the used of this term in the partial in music. The diameter of a sphere is its fundamental. The sphere vibrates, the lowest note it utters is the one from its diameter. There would be an octave on the half diameter, the radius, and then subsequently, all the other partials, harmonics would appear on this fundamental. The fact that the whole being is vibrating means that all the parts are vibrating and the fact that the whole being has its fundamental or lowest note as its diameter means the partials have higher frequencies in them. This means, that if you react at the level of your perimeter, your physical body the resonance of the whole spine would give you a certain beat. Let the circle now represent your physical body and the diameter of the circle represent your spinal column. If we cut that into a certain number of steps, which symbolically have been set at 33, although there is an anatomical way of looking at it which produces a little difference, the partials along the spine would cause the resonances, making the body resound in different ways. If you cause the whole organism to vibrate, you cause all the parts to vibrate. When the whole organism vibrates in a being as simple as an amoeba, the stimulus comes from outside and hits it and the stimulus goes through the whole being and the reaction goes back to the point of stimulation, and because the whole of it is involved, we call it a protopathic reaction. It is feeling, in the most primordial manner, without differentiation. In a sense, we can say that an amoeba has no partials. There are no subsidiary vibrations in it, no centres in it. We put the nucleus in because we have got to for hereditary reasons but the protoplasm in it responds totally and therefore, the amoeba can only say, “Yes,” or “No.” It cannot consider complex relations because it has got no parts. The moment we begin to ‘part’ a being, as we may part a being into three, and set up walls inside him, then we can make the dominant. You know that the third of a string is called the dominant and it allows certain changes, musically, from key to key.
In man, these changes are from ideation, affection and conation.
So, if we are playing with the dominant, if we play C and then we play G, we can very, very quickly change from the key of C into the key of G. The fifth note, so called, in the diatonic scale, the dominant, is really a third of the string. In the same way, ideation is a third of the whole man and the whole man can change key on the dominant. From the way he looks at it he can make any one of these, ideation, affection and conation, into his dominant.
Supposing we take the key of C, A fifth above it is G and a fifth below C is F. Every time we go up a fifth we can add a sharp. Every time we go down a fifth we can add a flat and so we can go through all the scales, up and down
Now, in the case of ourselves, if we want to change from our primary feelings to volition, we will have to compress, we will have to flatten ourselves: whereas, if we want to extend our ideas we will have to expand and become sharp. These references in the language are not accidental, they are real significances. The sub-divisions of the spine of man and of the nervous system and so on are all partials of the primary egg from which he developed.
Man was an egg. That egg set up a division. That was then its fundamental vibration. Then it divided itself and got two octaves. Then it goes on dividing a number of times until, after a certain number of divisions, it can make three centres. The Three-centre being is simply the partialising of the whole being by setting up walls of reaction. These walls of reaction are the same thing biologically as signified by buffers, intellectually. That is, by a method of stopping a stimulus going through the whole being, we pass from a very primitive, protopathic level, the level of total reaction, to the level where we can act partially, and, like all good things, it is dangerous.
Dialectics say if a thing is good, it is bad to exactly the same measure. You have to become conscious, volition is very, very good, it is a power, it goes along, but if it goes through the whole being, -…….. We could actually, very, very simply, catch one of these primitive little animals of the protopathic type, we just put a little pleasant stimulus near it and it begins to flow towards it. We put another one a little further away and it keeps on going. After a time it gets a bit of inertia, then we put something horrible there and it rushes on before it has time to recover itself from its inertia. If we can introduce partition into it and in so doing, isolate the stimulus, that is, set a wall up inside, the stimulus now comes, goes so far and then reacts. The stimulated part now wants to react to the stimulus, the other part has been protected from the full force of the stimulus and therefore it does not have to follow that part. Therefore the being, which is now a two-brained being can argue with itself about whether to go that way or not. If we placed two stimuli by the being, equal and opposite and increase their intensity, we could cause a drift and a split. This is the kind of thing that happens when an egg splits. The forces that come in and split it actually come from food. The being has a maximum size and after absorbing a certain amount of food it has absorbed a certain amount of motion. It then splits to keep itself down to a workable size. But this partition is the possibility of it saving itself from a stimulus situation. It is quite obvious that, if instead of two divisions we put four, we have reduced the stimulus strength to a quarter because the stimulus can now be confined to one part and three parts can say, “We are not going.” If we go on and make it partitioned into a few hundred thousand cells and put the stimulus in one place then it will be confined to that corner. Consequently, the more confining internally, the more prisoning there is, the more grilling on that being, the more freedom from the external stimulus. So the question of substantialising our intellectual knowledge is the question of taking our control idea of division and partition and deliberately acting upon it physically so that we can set up these divisions inside ourselves so that when a stimulus comes, it is isolated.
In the Bible, in the 49th Chapter of Genesis, “Simeon and Levi digged a wall and slew a man to their own hurt.” The man is that Cosmic Man or egg of a human being, and Simeon and Levi signify emotions and ideas and they cut the body with these partitions and they made that body into little bits and in the process, they themselves lost their unity. They were cut into little bits – “Instruments of cruelty are in their habitations. Go not into them, Oh my soul.”
The analytical working of the emotions and the ideas in the body cut it to bits and then the man is no good. But it is only for a time, for then it says, “Joseph is a vine growing over the walls.” This is your nervous system. After all the partition of the cells, Joseph starts growing over the walls and little streams run through them, and so on, this is the blood system. So, the vines are like the nervous system and the blood is watering these little gardens which have been made by the cruelty of Simeon and Levi.
To equate ideas and emotions with cruelty is not difficult if you remember that an idea is going to analyse and an e-motion is an out-springing motion of the feeling. It is really a reaction and if you do not get rid of this protopathic reaction, an emotion could commit you totally into a situation from which there could be no escape, and the form of the reverberation from the stimulus is the idea. So there is your idea and the emotion or reaction to the idea and it would commit you totally into a situation and you might get lost utterly. Therefore, the emotions are cut into bits, and ideas, which are simply the formal activity of the substance, are likewise. So, Simeon and Levi, “Slew a man to their own hurt,” but Joseph throws his vines over the walls and the nervous system grows and links together all the separate cells of all the organs and integrates them in the body. So the whole of the organism of man, his totality, his field, is cut into sections and then the vine grows over the sections to link them.
The linkage system in the body is done with gaps. There is a cell growing down and another one below. There is no continuous line from the brain to a muscle because if there were then energy would leak perpetually down that nerve and make the body act all the time. By means of a system of little gaps, the synapses, a resistance exists so that when, from the brain centre, a force goes down, it cannot jump that gap and therefore the body cannot respond. If you want to make it jump the gap you have to make an effort of will and the act of making an effort of will forces more energy down the nerve, piles up, and then it jumps the gap and in the process, it lights up. You see funny little ideas in these synapses when you have done a bit of practice, even visually. The more you use a certain nerve, the lower that resistance gets. When you are using these nerve lines and their resistance is becoming less and less, they may become so low in resistance that, in effect, it does not require your conscious willing to cause the energy to flow down. Then you have a permanent habit.
It is easier to make a habit than to undo it because you can make it from conscious effort of will, the energy derived from food plus a governing concept forcing it down and you have a resistance to overcome. But when the thing has grown and the resistance is very, very low, so that it is below conscious level, you cannot even begin to find out where to undo the effort and therefore you need a system of contra-efforts. This is the guiding idea behind Gurdjieff’s dance movements, to break the natural flow of habitual nervous energy running down across very, very low resistances.
When we come back to the three part man we can see that the isolation of the five senses in the head causes the isolation of sense data in the head, so the data can then be rotated in the head before they are let down into the emotional centre. But again, dialectically, there is always a danger for rotating every virtue you may acquire. Once you have got the sense data rotating in your head, if you are not careful, they will go on rotating in the head and you may know many things but if you do not know that they must be translated into action through emotion you will just become an intellectual.
We have to take all the good ideas, the ideas to which we give our will; good does not mean anything else, we must not have any erroneous moral ideas about the will; that is good to which the will commits itself in any individual. So we have to take all the ‘good ideas to which we give our will, that if a man commits himself to the ideas ‘it is good,’ and if it is that man committing himself to pure intellectualism, ‘it is good,’ he has already made a judgement that this will subserve his life in some way. At certain historical periods, we won’t go back to the architecture, but you can see the evidences, when the dome is there, which is the O, comprehension rules, so there will be an intellectual comprehendingness and a stress upon this cleverness of the head, the dome (head). Then you will find the scholastics waving themselves merrily in the breeze with their learning and yet it will not get down to the emotive and activity levels, and therefore there must arise a reaction from the rest of the body. The historical reactions, the revolutions and the radical movements that occur are only reactions to partial activities which have been torn out of the context of the fundamental. It is just as if, in the same way, we took a string from a musical instrument and said, we are not going to play the open string, the fundamental, we are going to play an octave higher, but we do not want the whole string so we will cut it off. Necessarily, something would happen to the quality of the tone.
So, in the same way, if you cut the head off and play your partial, the intellect, something happens to the tone. Tone is T – one, it is the unity principle. Your unity is destroyed. To make your unity be restored you must take your sense data and have the courage to emote about them. Actually it is taboo today to emote about anything. Scientific objectivity, the most comic of recent myths, is the rule and it induces the most dreadful intellectualism. We must learn to emote about the idea, that is, to feel so strongly our ‘yes’ and our ‘no’ to each idea that we have got, that we feel it building up in us and trying to express itself, either to build it up or knock it down, it must say ‘yes’ or ‘no.’ When it has started that feeling it will move into the generative department and it will either make children, to embody that idea, or it will make works of art or will build large buildings or something. The important point is that once Simeon and Levi have divided us, and that we exist now proves that they have, we have got to get Joseph throwing his vines over the wall, which is making these connections through the spinal nerves, intellectually, to see the reasons why we must integrate. When we seen the reasons why we must integrate, then we must go on to the feeling centre because the whole being is the Field-Being and the parts are the modalities of the Field. The intellect and volition are both parts of feeling. Feeling mobilised is volition; feeling formulated is idea. The whole man is simply a field of operation.
Power is operating in the uni-field of the Absolute and wherever it operates it makes a finite being and that finite being is the authority for his own field and his own field is defined by how far he can extend his influence. So he talks about, “The field of his activity.” It may be that a man has not got enough initiative and authority over his own physical body for him to have much control over his field. If he has not, then some other being, stronger, will invade his territory with his authority and, like a surgeon, will come along and cut pieces off him. In so doing he is actually justified by success, there is no other justification. When he operates from his superior power, he defines and the passive one, whatever he does, is not justified by the stronger. If he complains, if he has that much energy, he is justified to complain, but he would need more energy than complaint energy to stop the process and assert his positivity right up to the edge of his field.
When we draw the circle and cut it non-arbitrarily, it always cuts into six. This diagram is the origin of the word ‘existence,’ it means, “made out of six.” Every being actually has six other beings contending with it for the authority of its zone. It means, in effect, if a man is not in his own centre, giving out the energies to control his own field he will be subjected, in fact, to the fields of other beings. If we extended this six-fold diagram, infinitely in all directions, we would have a plane diagram of reality. Reality is simply points of impulsion throughout infinity and each point is beating and asserting its own authority. All points are equally points and nevertheless there is no reason why any given point shall beat its own message. It is an act of will to do that and will is prior to intellection. If one beats hard very, very hard he an strengthen his own perimeter and all the other forms within him, (the six), which do not belong to him because they are the perimeters of six other beings he incorporates in his being, and he makes five senses and a mind.
You see the doctrine of subsidiary entities here, why we have entities other than ourselves in us because they do not belong to us. This is why we have to order them about because if we do not, then they will order us about. Another being, seeing our perimeter going very, very strong, is thrown into disequilibrium. The line of the perimeter of one of the outer circles, is weak, the centre circle is very, very strong. The latter being may beat very, very loud and make his perimeter become very strong. The two beings are fighting for the dominion of this as far as they can get. If one being elevates itself to the point of obscuring the other, then it is right, it is the author, - the author, ‘the energy going to establish a law.’ The author is the primary energy going to establish a law of its own. The law is exactly as far as its own perimeter and no further. So there is a real fight going on throughout the whole infinite space between all entities.
A long time ago one entity won a colossal battle, the result of which is the universe and all subsidiary beings in it. All the subsidiary beings are inscribed in the big universe. Supposing I am identified with one of these particular beings. I am a lenticular being, one of six in a seventh. If I accept it, I affirm it and in the act of accepting and affirming that being, I have limited my consciousness to it and I have imposed upon myself. I am the arbiter of my destiny when I accept a concept that limits me.
Supposing I start doing a bit of geometry, as Pythagoras did, and Plato and one or two other fellows. I would say that is funny, you know, if I try to take that curve of mine and try to find out its source, where did it come from? It goes round and round and round. It is mine. (Central circle with six lenticular partitions) So if this one is mine, I am not a lenticular being I am a nice big circular being and inside this circular being there are some other beings. In other words, I was not even a lenticular being at all, I was really a seven-being, a S – even Being, a Spiritual-even Being and I have got six lenticular beings inside me by changing my concept.
This is exactly what happens inside human societies where one man with a governing concept like that defines some other men without the concept as ‘the people,’ and he puts a crown on himself. (A) Nobody else did it. By imposing on them a certain idea called the ‘bal lot’, he persuades them that they had voted him in. He was a cunning man, and because they believed that this was an essential part of their well-being as lenticular beings, they support him. He does not allow them to know that the curve of the lenticular being really belongs to the being centre of another circle. He keeps the lenticular being inside his own boundary as only a little ‘sixer’ or sex-being. Six and sex are the same. He puts them in sections and deprives them of their wholeness. If he could become himself, aware, by extending that he is not really a king, he says, “I think I will capture that king and call him a little king and I will call myself an Emperor, and I am going to extend my dominion to include a colossal zone.” If he conquered to infinity, which is impossible, he would be an infinite emperor. Actually, he conquers so far until he is too far away from base and then another centre, (B) far away, is nearer to itself than he and is stronger, and that is the limit of his empire. But it is an act of will and an act of deliberate integration round a concept that determines.
So, in the same way that we avoid the protopathic reaction by departmentalising the egg so in this diagram we avoid the protopathic reaction by seeing the segments inside ourselves. We learn to distinguish between the five senses and the common sense, which is the mind. We see the great gaps between the senses, between hearing and seeing, which are two difference frequencies. There is a blank full of frequencies that we do not respond to normally. If we responded totally to all frequencies, we would be blinded completely. The whole organism would then be confused.
By means of introducing gaps between the different frequency bands we liberate ourselves from the Absolute. If, theologically, the Absolute had been satisfied to have been Absolute, it would not have created. The fact that it has created shows a virtue in gaps. It is a virtue in ‘not-knowing’ certain things. There are untold fantasies between the five senses. We do not want to know about those until we have completely understood the meaning of the five senses. Only when we have substantialised ourselves in these five senses and their co-ordinator, the mind are we ready to turn it a little and find out what is inside the centre. Then we will build up the twelve-fold system which we see symbolised in the Zodiac. We can build it up to the Thousand-Petalled Lotus. It simply means that as we become more and more conscious of the real meaning of the limitations of the senses we already have, so we can gain the one thing we need, courage, to dare to face what is in between the senses. It needs courage because the unknown is in between there. It could be damaging, it could be frightening, it could be disintegrating.
When we know thoroughly the five senses and the co-ordinating mind, then we can begin to realise what must be the nature of the vibrations between seeing and hearing, tasting and touching and tasting and smelling. There are other levels of awareness that are between these five separate senses and when we have grounded ourselves in the significance of the senses then we can turn the wheel a bit and generate organs for perceiving the inter-spaces. In the same way that a room is full of radio waves, and by means of a radio set we can abstract them, if that same device had been invented too early it would have frightened people tremendously. Today we can understand it because of certain electrical and mechanical concepts that we have which make it safe to do such things. The more we understand, the more we can afford to know about the gaps in reality. In order to do it we must cut ourselves: and just as we must cut ourselves into three parts, making the ideation, the affection and the conation so we must divide ourselves down the middle into the right and left. On the left side we put ideas in general and on the right side, will in general. The right side of the body and the left side receive nervous impulses in a different way. In a right-handed man, volition tends to express itself in the right hand. In the left-handed man, volition has been diverted into ideation, so left-handed means cunning. If you look at the “Laws of Manu,” you will find that the casteless Chandalas were forbidden to write with the right hand because it was the will side. The rule is that they shall not write from the left to the right, nor with the right hand, because if they do, they will become more wilful. It is a Brahmin rule for controlling the Chandala. So you see these physical facts have been known for a long time and they are still useful for us to realise that the body is unequal. When Jacob fights with an angel, one of his hip joints is put out because he is fighting with will and ideas. There is one eye in the head, volitional, and one eye, ideational. Gurdjieff says, on one occasion, “ Thou shalt not look into the left eye of a woman.” Now if you consider the nature of woman as volitional and therefore the suppression of the ideational in her and when you look into the ideational eye you are looking into nothing. If you meditate upon the meaning of that you will find that it has a very definite relation to the dynamics of the will in a woman, because, in the left eye, she is unprotected because she has not got an idea. If you look into her right eye you look into her will and she can respond at the will level. But if you look into the other eye, when you expect, unconsciously to see ideation, you are in danger of the abyss. You are in danger of the unformulated. You could become passive by thinking you were active. Really it is the orientation of ideas to will I the being that causes this attraction of the sexes and of the two poles of the same being.
So when we look at the head as intellective, we can see the head considering volition and the head considering form. Feeling, feeling about volition and feeling, feeling about ideas. Volition, volition, volition, ideas.
The spinal column itself divides the body in half, not quite symmetrically, because of the inequality, because we are more volitional than we are rational. A being that was entirely rational would have only a left side. A being that is more rational than wilful is left-handed. The Levites, from whom the Priests are taken, are left-handed and because they were left-handed, or idea-men, - the will had been played into the idea, they are tricky, and the rule was, that as they are naturally tricky, “We had better give them a job for tricky men and we will know where they are. They will be in the Church and then we will be able to keep an eye on them.”
There is a four-caste system in India, the Brahmins or priests, the Kshatriyas or warriors, the businessmen and the servants. This four-fold division corresponds with the four parts of man and the Brahmins, who were the sons of Abrahmin, and many who were left-handed, imposed upon the others, an idea. But, after a time, the strong men, the warriors, discovered that any time there was any trouble, the Brahmins called them. So they began to think. They said, “If we can fight the enemies of the Brahmins, we can fight the Brahmins.” So, they rose against them and slew them. Then we find the great period of the Karma-Yogi, the King. The activist takes over the ideas of the Brahmin and restores the will to its primacy. The Brahmins put the idea over the will, like the Dominicans put the idea over the will: St Francis put the will over the idea. Thomas Aquinas put the idea over the will. There is a real battle between the intellectualists and volitional men. The intellectualists, because their will was not very strong, put it into ideas and tried to think of a technique to overcome volitional men.
This process is called the murdering of Abel by Cain. The canny man, the man of ideas, did not like the success that manifestly attended volition so he began to think about how to destroy will. His first act was to kill will, suddenly, in the Field. Because will unfortunately, had procreated and was already in Cain on the volitional side, even in Cain’s children, some of them were volitional and they argued with Daddy. So the next thing to do was for Daddy to set up a system so that all new wills coming into the world should be put through the strainer (s-trainer) and therefore the will would become strained, (sieved). They would come out in little bits which are called ideas. This is the conditioning of the will which would have been unific but then became disintegrated, and, in the conditioning of its reflexes, entirely subject to its educators.
So we see this battle goes on eternally. The Will is the Father, the idea is the Son. The battle between the two produces life, - the Holy Spirit.
The idea is the limitation of the will because an idea is only generated when the will compresses itself onto a centre. An idea is the compressed centre of the Field when the will has turned inwards to that centre, and therefore, the idea is a restriction of the will. Nevertheless, we have to work through ideas because they are forms, a screwdriver is better for a screw than a hammer, so the idea has a certain amount of significance that must not be ignored, and the will has no significance at all but it is the power that drives the significance. Significance is in the form and in the volition is the power that actuates the significance of the idea.
So, inside every individual man there is a Cain, the idea side: there is an Abel, the volitional side: and the idea is always tending to kill the will. But if you understand that the will cries for vengeance from the blood (centred in the heart) which is the feeling life, and that God forgave Cain, and that there is a process called ‘Raising Cain’ going on in the universe. So that when we finally understand the real split between will and idea, Cain has been raised and Abel has been avenged, because the idea raised is Abel (ability.) Ability comes out of the idea raised, elevated, and the ability compressed is the idea.
These two processes are going on continuously in the universe as Power and Form. They have produced, as idea, the separation into the three parts and as will are unifying the three parts. The feeling awareness, the field consciousness, is that through which we gain the power consciously to will.
Although some beings press harder than others, there is no reason whatever why they should, no reason whatever why one should press harder than another but the observed fact in the universe is that some do press harder than others. The ones who press harder are called ‘activists and the ones they act upon are called ‘pacifists’ and there is nothing to distinguish between them in any ethical or moral sense. This is entirely beyond moral or ethical concepts. This is beyond the ‘good or evil’ of Nietzsche. It is beyond the ‘black or white’ of the yogis. It is simply a statement a statement of fundamental dynamics. The Absolute, represented by the white paper, is able to vibrate when shaken. It does so throughout itself, absolutely. At every point of impulsion, there is generated a travelling motion of expulsion. Around it there are always more points of impulsion/expulsion. The pattern can only come by the interlapping of all these forces. The original state called Heaven is where all these forces are vibrating at the same intensity so there is absolutely no hierarchy whatever. That is the state to which, ultimately, it returns when it says, “No man shall teach God to other men because all shall know Him.” Meanwhile, we are in the position where some beings of great strength have imposed upon us a concept of our finity, of our partiality, of our inferiority (Which means, ‘in-doing’ within their definition.) If we work within their definition we are practically, inferior to them and if we work outside their definition we are superior to them. It is only in this definition, in the acceptance or rejection of the definition, that there is any freedom for us.
Is there any question about this primary diagram that is obscure?
Remember every man is imposing upon every other man already. The question is, to what end?
Question: Mind is the common sense?
E.H.: Common to the other five, yes. It simply means that separate messages have been fed in from five of the points and used the centre for overlapping them, comparing. It is common sense. It is a sense like the protopathic reaction of an amoeba, so that all separated vibrations have a zone wherein they overlap so we can actually think how a sound may look. We can think what a smell or touch signifies to us. We can try to find out the meaning of the emotions in relation to sound stimuli because we have a protoplasmic part, apart that has not been spoiled, a part that has not been Simeoned and Levied, and we use it as a mixing bowl for the separated messages of the other parts.
Question: What is the significance of part of the universe imposing itself upon others? Why? Is it because the forces are coming unequally?
E.H.: “Why” is a psychological question. You have already implied ‘intelligent being’ there in “Why.” We use “why?” for psychological questions. “How?” is a mechanical question. The ‘how’ is perfectly simple.
Somewhere there is a beat stronger than anywhere else. That is the ‘how’ of it. To say ‘why’ is to postulate a relational being and here we come to the concept of the Monistic God. The ‘six’ diagram could be extended infinitely and it is this diagram and all its significances, infinitely extended that Christ refers to as God when he says, “My Father,” but when he says, “I” he is referring to a circle. When he says, “I Judge correctly,” he is referring to the biggest circle there is, the Macrocosmic one. When he says, “When I judge, I judge correctly,” he has made a shift of reference. When he says, “I have not come to judge,” he is referring to his finite, terrestrial being but when he says, “My Father works and I work,” he is talking about the Macrocosmic one, the individual and the common energy running through both, and he shifts his reference all the time. This is what Parable does.
Parable is specially made to release you from misconceptions of grooved thinkings. Parable jolts you, it makes you think another way. A lot of parables have become platitudes and are now grooved thinkings, but if you work on them, like the parable of the Sower and so on, in relation to the body, - that some seed falls on good ground, some falls on stony ground, somewhere there is not much earth, and so on, - all this refers to the four-fold being. Therefore there is a certain good ground in you. “Good,” refers to your will department. It will do all right. There is also “shallow ground.” It falls in there and springs up very quickly, - the “bright remark’” – and is gone. These parables can be re-charged with their original significance by work and by activation upon them by actually testing them in action.
Question: Can this be known in degrees? Say, the imposition of somebody else’s emotion? Figuratively speaking, you could see through that emotion, see the cause of it and not allow it to influence you.
E.H.: Yes, that is right.
Question: As I see that, the time you stop it, that is beyond the perimeter somewhere. That must be a degree on a different level. I mean to say, that if I am going to meet an imposition of some one, that is the limit. But, say for instance, I see through it……
E.H.: If you have seen through it you must have penetrated it.
Reply: But it still keeps on in that direction.
E.H.: But it cannot influence you.
Reply: But it can influence somebody else.
E.H.: That is all right, that is their business. Many are called and few chosen. Everybody would like power but few are chosen to get it. And, you have to think about who does the choosing. There is a great mystery in “Who does the choosing?”
Question: It is possible, then, to thread your way through that and not be touched.
E.H.: Oh yes, not to be touched at all. It is entirely a question of what concept you will. A man gives you an idea, if you accept that idea from him then, in effect, you are his instrument. For instance, school teachers, in general, who are trained to teach the three Rs to children and do so for the whole of their lives, are just as if they were mechanisms belonging to the government. A few men who constitute the government have appropriated these bodies and used these bodies to impose upon the children coming up. With a handful of educators Hitler turned the Jewish children into Jew haters, into little Nazis. First he got a handful of educators and imposed upon them an idea. They were really like Pavlov’s dogs, they responded in a conditioned reflex manner. Then they are put into schools and in one generation, suddenly, there is a total change of mood. And one man has imposed, and this danger is going on all the time. Either individual centres are self-determinant, able to resist it, or they are not. If they are not then they are going to be imposed upon. If we, in this room are working now, it is to stop other beings imposing on us.
Question: Do the centres in the diagram lead on down…?( Are they three dimensional?)
E.H.: They are other beings. Each of these centres as far as we are concerned, is another intelligence.
Question: It seems that the centre is a point, a non-existent point. Surely it must be seen in depth too?
E.H.: It is not a non-existent because no point could be non-existent at all. If you are talking about Euclid’s abstract points, which have location without dimension, that is meaningless. All you have to do is to look at your physical body as a condensation of certain forces modalised in the manner you call material. When you say, “My body,” Y-o-u in that place refers to the modalities in that place. But when you are referring to the “I” in you, you are referring to the same “I” as I am referring to, you are referring to consciousness. If you refer to a conceptual being, the one your educators taught you to be and you call that, “I,” that is a mis-statement, it is a false identification. It is a group concept that has been put into your body from outside and had been imposed upon the consciousness where your body is. Your body is one of these points, a three-dimensional one. The other bodies in this room are other points.
Question: This is still like the figure of the “Long Body,” and this is the depth I am trying to get at, from birth to death.
E.H.: What you are talking about now are certain organic changes in the reference point in consciousness. A body coheres for a purpose, for a time. When the purpose and the time have expired, they are released and the elements that were held together at that time, by a will, disintegrate. The elements do, but the consciousness does not disintegrate. The vehicle disintegrates because its time has been fulfilled. Every body is a volitional vehicle.
Question: It seems that all my ideas and the perimeter of the unknown keep changing.
E.H.: It must do because there are no other beings.
Question: That is what I mean by depth….
E.H.: But there are other beings, I am one, every one else in the room is one, there are some more outside, all beating their own centres and propagating concepts. Somewhere, in a certain school in England, recently formed there, is a small group of men determined to dominate the world and to subdue all scientific brains for their own end. They think they are going to succeed, and unless there is a counterstroke to them, they will. But there are many counterstrokes to their activities all over the world already, because when a stimulus comes in one point, the ripple goes to all other points and those other points can say, it is within their power, “I will now initiate a counter ripple.” Those who do not, will be jammed between these two. It is essential to be very realistic about this. I can work. A decision can be made here by this I. I work on me. I say, “Me” because that is substantial, the M is substance. The I refers to the Observer. “I work on me,” is the Observer works on body substance. Wherever there is a body, there is consciousness working on it. Wherever the form in the body is such that the consciousness can use it in a certain way, it will do so, but that depends on the organisation of the body. So, if the body has a very simple organisation, like an amoeba, it won’t join in the conversation; but, if the body is sufficiently organised, it can see what it means to get a governing concept, to emote it, to volitionalise it, to put is into the material world so that another centre with a similar purpose cannot reduce it to inferiority, that is, to an internal element in his definition, this being.
An angel came to William Blake on one occasion and said, “Do you know that you are worshipping the most horrible, stinking kind of Heaven that look like Hell?” He took Blake and showed him a most horrible place. So Blake said, “All right, let us now go to Heaven.” And when they went up to Heaven Blake said, “Now look at that.” And the angel saw some horrible things, monkeys picking each others’ tails and terrible smells and so on, and the angel said, “You are imposing on me.” Blake said, “We impose on each other.”
That was a psychological statement by a psychologist, far superior to any psychologist since. Nietzsche’s psychology is a baby compared with Blake’s. Blake was a very powerful man and he said, “ If I do not make a system of my own, I will be enslaved by the system of somebody else.” But, a system is only ‘a saviour for a time’. At the end of it you have to do something else because your concept must be pushed out to infinity because at infinity there are other beings conceptualising, and it is ‘either – or.’ Their concept includes us. A world ruler includes us in his idea as pawns. The question is, are we going to accept the definition?
Some friends of mine, at present in gaol in Germany, did not accept the definition. They went to gaol. They are better off. They have got quite good literature to read and they will be out eventually after they have done their token service. Meanwhile, they have been ‘contaminating’ the other prisoners. The whole thing depends upon this development of a Master Concept and pushing it because somebody else is pushing at the other end.
This is the meaning of the opposition of Christ and the Devil. God is no respecter of persons. He gives energy to Christ and He gave energy to the devil too, “Because,” He said, “if I am going to develop my muscle, I must have something to pick up.” You cannot develop without opposition. Blake said, “Opposition is true friendship,” and therefore, a thinker like Nietzsche said, “ I am absolutely against the Church and therefore I must do everything I can to keep it inexistence because I must have something to attack.”
It is a very, very bad policy if a government were to eliminate its enemies completely, it would have to introvert and attack itself. So, what it has to do is make skirmishes against the enemy, make a token war and then stop it. “Germany shall not rise again!” Oh no? But, in the end, they have kept it in being. It is fundamental psychology if you once eliminate your enemy, you will die because life is opposition, and therefore, in order to develop, you must find your opposition. In a city where everyone is trained to be polite it is not easy to find it.
Comment: You must find that opposition and then ‘hit it.’
E.H.: You must hit it on the right level. If you have gone past the bludgeon level you do not hit it with a bludgeon. Hit it at the level at which you get most benefit.
Comment: I should think that words help you there. With some people it takes more than a blow.
E.H.: You are fighting on an intellectual level.
Comment: Sometimes it might be necessary for the blow.
E.H.: It may be, but only sensitivity could say that.
Question: You know this third eye and the balance of the two? I am interested in that and what is seen in the balance of things. Say for instance, you are puzzling over something, say there is a mix up everywhere, jumping from one crisis to another. You are trying to reason things out as much as possible, then you get certain moments of clarity and you get pictures. What relation are these pictures to things? I have my own interpretation.
E.H.: The pictures are visual ideas.
Comment: But, there is no relation to ordinary existence, at least, there is no thing in the outside world that they are like.
E.H.: That does not mean much. The outside world contains a very, very minute portion of your total form and your total form stretches back to the germ plasm to all your ancestors and right back to the first bit of protoplasm that ever occurred, into the universe and beyond that to Cosmic Force. We are only claiming our own when we are claiming the Absolute, because every single one of those points is as valid as all the others. No one has a right to impose upon us if we have the right to stop them. Fundamentally, “Might is right.” Have you got the will power? Have you got the clarity to know at what to aim?
QUESTION: In these pictures is it necessary to put them into words?
E.H.; If you do not, you will not order them and the person who puts them into words will impose upon you. In the history of the development of ethical and moral theory, the first thing that happened was the setting up of a series of definitions: teaching people to recite, “boundary, rites, obligations”, and such words. When they have been engrammed upon them then other names are appended. Gradually the mind was furnished with definitions. The men who made these definitions wrote their names upon certain territories, which they had defined, and then everybody else kept off them because it said, “Up to this mark is mine.” That is exactly what happened historically, so Nietzsche, in writing, “The Genealogy of Morals,” could say, “Some men, once upon a time, imposed words on the world, and then imposed fact through the word, on people.” He divides the world into men that are consciously defining and men that are suffering their definitions. What he demands, his Superman, is a man who throws away all the concepts that other men have imposed upon him and finds his unique nature and develops it.
Question: In words?
E.H.: He cannot do it any other way. Change the word and you change the idea. In Indian Philosophy you will find Namarupa, ‘name-form, is one concept. Change the name, you change the form and you change the function. If you have not got the word, you have not really got the clear form and if you have not got that then you have not got the function.
Comment: This is like coming under influences that you think will be beneficial for you?
E.H.: That is right. Choose your influence. Choose your concept which you will serve. I serve a concept. “His worship is perfect freedom.” That is what it says in the Bible. That is a nice concept
Question: When you are under the influence of some men, does this mean to say that this is resistance? That from clarification emerges the resistance to say, “Well, these things will pass, I will wait for the other.” At such times you must be passive?
E.H.: You would have to be actively passive if you waited deliberately, not passively passive. Christ is talking about active passivity when he talks about deliberately getting crucified instead of accidentally. That is converting the passive into an active by deliberately doing it. That is the transvaluation of values. Previously everybody had suffered because men were stronger than they were, and they did not like it. Christ said to them, the only reply to the men who dominate you is not to run away but is to say, “Right, bang the nail in Samuel, you have not touched me. You have not touched my soul, I still disagree with you.” Once that had been done people saw it was possible to annoy their rulers by the way they took their punishment and suddenly, a new cult came, - martyrdom. They were delighted! You throw them to the lions. Instead of cowering down and giving enjoyment to the wicked rulers, they just looked at them and said, “There is something in me that your lions cannot bite.” The rulers recognised it and said, “That is how we rule.”
So, when the fishers were fishing on one side of the boat and got no fish, Christ said, “Throw the net on the right side,” that is, the rulers, not the left wing. Then all the rulers, the kings, were converted because they had recognised the Spirit. When Constantine saw the sign of the Cross, “In this sign shall ye triumph.” Because the deliberate affirmation of negation posits the negation and inverts its nature and deprives the enemy of the sole satisfaction he got, namely, that from seeing you as inferior to his purpose.
Turn the whole thing upside down. It is very easy to do upon somebody. He thinks you are in an inferior position. A friend of mine is an actor and he thinks that the Producer is a fool. He has got the totally wrong idea and is in a great rage about it, he is not going to take it. I said, “ Let us pretend that the Absolute is the Producer. When you say this, think,- ‘The Absolute is the Producer, the producer is always right. But, you must think of the Absolute. Now I want you to go to the producer and when he says this silly thing again, say, looking up, “The Producer is always right.” You will then be referring to the Absolute, he will think you are referring to him, and then see what happens.”
The result was that the producer did not know what to do. Suddenly he felt that his authority was being accepted without resentment. But he loves resentment, it is his only evidence of power. So he took my friend out to dinner afterwards and said, “Is something wrong?” My friend said, “No.” The producer tried all through dinner to find out what was the matter with him, and it cost him, at least, a dinner. Because, you have no satisfaction unless you can annoy somebody who will resent you when you impose on them.