- Luke 17:21
Week 10 Assignments
- Note the following idea and observe: Only as I, the observer, sees some idea of self as an illusion is it free of the tendency to identify with that idea.
- Observe and document how I witness greed and vanity working in the self and how pride defends the greed and vanity.
- Disidentify and observe the operations of the self. Witness (without judgement) the behavior of the Not-I’s and their underlying motives, conflicts, emotional responses, etc.
Week 10 Transcript
There is a Teaching idea that would be very worthwhile to make a note of and to observe for a while. This idea is that only as I, the Observer, sees some idea of the self (of John or Mary) as an illusion, is it free of the tendency to identify with that idea. We will repeat this:
There is a Teaching idea that only as I, the Observer, sees some idea of the self (of John or of Mary) as an illusion is it free of the tendency to identify with that idea.
Now, one may see a given idea now and then, or something that a not-I is doing and not agree with it at that moment, but really doesn’t see that the idea is an illusion. And as we have said, to see an illusion for what it is, is to see the truth and that X operates upon that truth. Once I recognizes that a given idea in the self – a conditioned idea – is an illusion, there is no longer any tendency to identify with that idea.
Now, to start today let’s look at some of the ideas that we have of unpleasant emotions. We have an idea that one cannot prevent having an unpleasant emotion, that one must have these ideas, that people cause us to have these ideas of anger, and fear, and guilt, and resentment, and boredom (if you please) and apathy of “What’s the use? It’s all in vain.” All of these are very unpleasant emotions – such as also of jealousy and envy and a number and number of others.
Now the Teaching says that one has a right not to identify with unpleasant emotions. As we said, a right was something no one can take away from you. And no one can take away from any of us the right not to have or not to identify with unpleasant emotions. The self may have ‘em, but I, the Observer, does not need to identify with them. And nobody can make us. So that is one thing that no one can take away from us. And as we observe this we see that unpleasant emotions do arise in the self. And that unpleasant emotions bring about, of course when they’re identified with, a terrific change in the body chemistry. One does become addicted to these various charges. They give one the feeling of energy or strength or of some other things.
Self-pity is one of the more common unpleasant emotions. Self-pity gives the person a sense of self-love: “I’m so wonderful and so nice and nobody is treatin’ me.” So, one really cuddles the self when one identifies with the idea of self-pity.
Now if we begin to see by observing the self – I, the Observer, observing the self sees that all of this is an illusion, that it does not bring about more consciousness, that it does not put one in a higher State of Being. But actually takes one to a much lower State of Being – down to Apathy, Fear, Self-pity and all these things of the States of Being in the very lowest levels of being, down to a hypnotic state. Now, they offer, of course, from early infancy that all of these are wonderful things and that one cannot prevent them. The infant controls grown-ups with unpleasant emotions. The baby cries pitiful; someone picks it up. It cries angry; someone pays attention to it. It cries hurt and everybody runs. So the self started very early to value unpleasant emotions.
Now as I observes the unpleasant emotions, we will observe what the self is trying to gain with this unpleasant emotion. So let’s start with anger. When I, the Observer, observes the self being angry, let’s see the motive with the anger, what it intends to accomplish. It is not something that can’t be helped. It is that this is the way to get people to get in line. It is an effort to control and one gains that sense of importance, a sense of being able to control people.
Now let’s observe self-pity, being pitiful. Does it not also control people? Being a martyr, “I’ve pleased everybody, and nobody has appreciated it. And I’ve worked my fingers to the bone and nobody pays any attention to me!” is a cry for attention, is it not. And does it usually work? At least the self is paying attention for self…one not-I is feeling sorry for the whole state of the other not-I’s, and a whole crowd is all involved and one is in a very unpleasant state. One might say one is in the slums of one’s inner world, and all in an attempt to control.
GREED – MORE, BETTER, AND DIFFERENT
Much of this begins with Greed. One has a certain amount of pleasure. One has a certain amount of comfort. One has a certain amount of attention. One has approval. One has a certain ability to control others (especially if they’re smaller or younger or something) or one is the boss. But then that’s not enough. Greed says there should be more. And it begins to put up pictures. It begins to offer suggestions: “Well, after all, at that time they didn’t appreciate it. Here I gave all the employees a Christmas bonus and not a one of ‘em has come around and really said thank you for it. I bought the family a new station wagon and all they do is want more money to drive it with. I fixed his dinner every night when he came in, but he really has never appreciated what I do for him.” So Greed with its basis of the Four Dual Basic Urges and always wanting more, better, and different for any amount that it gets, begins to be a great “suggester.”
So one of the more unpleasant emotions that is seldom observed until it is brought very definitely to one’s attention is to observe the urge for more, better and different. So in our first practical thing to keep records on this week, we’re going to write down when self wants more, better and different. And we’re going to observe the self offering suggestions that one should have more and better and different.
And we will write down, “Self says it should have more attention. It should have more appreciation. It should have more attention, it should have more approval.” Now, you hear things like comin’ up out of the self trying to suggest to I that, “After all, all he is interested in is his business or his profession. And he really hasn’t given me any attention hardly at all – so little that we may as well forget it.” So, the next statement is: “He has given none at all. He’s totally interested in his business or profession. That’s what he really loves. He doesn’t care a thing about me.” And, vice versa: “She doesn’t care any thing about me. All she wants is the money I bring home and as long as I bring her lots of money, she’s all right. But, she’s always hollerin’ for more.”
So, one observes Greed. And we will write down all the times we see the self, John or Mary, wanting more, better, and different. And we will write down how it wants more. We will see then, possibly, that this is an illusion. And when one sees an idea of the self as an illusion, it no longer has the power to suggest identity or suggest one identify with it. One is freed of the urge to identify with this not-I because one sees it as an illusion. Now as we observe Greed and its many ways of functioning, of course the Vanity says, “I don’t have Greed. I only try to have what is essential and I look after everbody else.” So, we will observe carefully to see Greed. Then we will see Vanity. So we’re going to put all three of these down: Vanity and Pride, and of course starting with Greed, which is the parent of Vanity and Pride.
Now, Vanity paints a very composite picture that’s only allowed to the surface of, “What a wonderful person I am! I’m better than other people. I can see where they go wrong. I can see where they have faults. And of course I can recognize I have a fault or two but they’re all caused by circumstances. And other people make me angry… sure, I get angry, but it’s due to other people’s misbehavior. In other words, my anger is really “righteous indignation”; but other people are just plain short-tempered – they have short fuses.”
So we paint a very beautiful composite picture of self (which is called Vanity) of the ability to judge others; of the ability to see how I’m better than others; of the ability to see where others have short-comings that I wouldn’t stoop to; to see how I’ve always tried to do the right thing – against great odds, of course. So, we will paint this picture. This is enough to give you a start. And each of us must discover for self what one’s false picture of self really is.
And then Pride is the defense of that false picture. So, we will write down all the times that we feel on the defensive.
Now, there’s only really one thing to defend unless someone has a gun or a knife after you. And I’m quite sure that that’s very infrequently, if at all. But one is on the defensive. In order to expand this picture a bit, let’s go back and think of all the times that can be recalled that one has been on the defensive for the past several months. Now we are eliminating the times that one was threatened with a gun or a knife or a madman or physical violence of any sort. We’re talking about we were on the defense of our psychological motives of our opinion of self. Someone comes in and says, “You’re forgetful,” and of course, here comes the defense. Someone says, “You’re always late.” Here comes the defense of all the things I had to do and the car wouldn’t start or a hundred and one other things to defend the fact of being late. And, “It’s not really I that’s late. It’s other things that forced me. Circumstances made me late, if I really was late. But I was only late once or twice this whole year and they said I was late every time.” And many more of the same general idea.
We’re going to keep records of Greed, Vanity and Pride. We’re not trying to change them. We’re not having some self-improving not-I say we’ve got to get over this. We are looking at the propositions produced by Greed, by Vanity, and by Pride.
This is all the work of the Four Dual Basic Urges, the Master called mammon, the one which the self serves, the one which when “I” was identified with the self because it did not see it as an illusion, was identified in serving. Now I, the Observer, sees something as an illusion, reports that to X, and henceforth I is no longer tempted to identify with that idea of the self that it has seen as an illusion. So, we hope that by making very complete observations and recording them so that they can be read and reviewed, and by writing them down that we begin to see the ramifications of the Four Dual Basic Urges as expressed in Greed, Vanity, and Pride. Because if one should see clearly the illusion of the Four Dual Basic Urges, one would cease to identify with it and all the others are associated and based upon this Four Dual Basic Urges and its work of Greed, Vanity, and Pride. So if one should see it, one has produced information for X that greatly enhances the possibility of the Awareness being cleansed, of being made pure.
Now, to observe some of the ways that the not-I’s, the self, justifies itself into a state of having the unpleasant emotions: First will be that the self is observed by I, the Observer, to be replaying past happenings, as they’re powerful influences to bring about the state of the unpleasant emotions. Because it generally either compares the present state as being not as good as the good ole days. Or it feels sorry for itself because it had such an unhappy childhood, such an unhappy last year, or such a terrible state of illness three years ago, “That they didn’t think I would pull through. But, I finally made it.” And it can replay it and replay it and gather all manner of self-pity as to, “Oh how sick I was three years ago, how terrible I felt.” This is due to recalling these to, obviously, the unconscious associations, which we started on a few days ago to make the associations conscious.
SIX FAMILIES OF NOT-I’S
It may be observed that each of the not-I’s in the whole self is always considering its being. “How does this affect me?” Everything that happens and there is six major families of them. And each one sees everything that is happening as being opposed to it. The one that’s determined to have its way by complaining feels that “Nobody really pays any attention to me,” which really that not-I is saying, “I’ve complained and nobody did anything about it.” The one that sticks up for its rights – sticks up for its rights is very belligerent and nobody gives it its rights as it thinks they are. The pleaser tries to please and people don’t appreciate it. It tries to believe and do as told by authority and there is no rewards.
You see, the self is always lookin’ for a reward. “What’s in it for me?”
I is looking for no reward and not interested in escaping anything because it is a function of X.
It is not subject to reward or punishment.
Its only difficulty is when it identifies with the self and then is involved in the turmoil of the self, the name, the false personality, the bit of all the conflict and confusion serving mammon, manipulated and controlled by mammon. But it is not subject to punishment. It sometimes goes to sleep and gets it in a bad place. So each of these false “I’s” is always considering self. Here’s the one that has been different for two weeks – it’s put on a good front. It’s pleased everybody. It’s been polite, it’s smiled a lot and has not started any arguments and here, “I’m not any happier than I was before because the other people are still going on and misbehaving like they’ve always been.” And then, of course, the blamer always blames and thinks that everyone should apologize: ““So I blamed and nobody apologized and I should have been entitled to an apology.” So you see that all the not-I’s are continually building the Accounts Receivable that you have your records of and are observing.
When we begin to see that the whole idea of Accounts Receivables due the self are illusions, that nothing is due, then one is further freed from the ideas of having something due one. One no longer identifies with these ideas that they owe “me,” that they have done terrible things to “me” and they should do something about it.
Each “I” has a very high opinion of its worth. The one that complains will brag about how it got something done by complaining. “I cried and he went out and bought me flowers. I cried and he went and bought me a new car. I cried and he got me some jewelry or he quit going out at nights.” Or the man says he sat and pouted all evening and Mama begin to really notice that he wasn’t just puttin’ up with everything and, “She begin to be awful sweet to me. I just walked out of the house and slammed the door and when I came back in she was kind of in line a little bit.” So, each “I” has a very high opinion of itself. It will tell how it pleased people and did very good, one will. One will tell how loyal it’s been to the institution that it accepts as an authority, how it’s always believed and done everything that the institution asked for. But it’s feelin’ a little sorry for itself because the institution hasn’t really taken the proper notice of it. In fact the self has not yet been made the head of the whole institution – it’s still an underling. But it is very well, has a very high opinion of itself. And the one that is always putting on a front and behaving differently will tell you how wonderfully they behaved under such adverse circumstances.
You will hear the “I’s” within and the “I’s” without in the environment all tellin’ how wonderful they performed. But they always imply that they wasn’t given quite enough for it. And the blamer will be busy tellin’ how he determined the cause of a situation and how it could be corrected if everybody could just see what he sees as cause. If so-and-so could just be eliminated or locked up or in some way disposed of… if they’d just go away, everything would be all right. But, still it feels it’s been cheated because everybody wasn’t converted by its discovery of what was to blame. Everybody hasn’t changed their way. So it was mistreatment that people didn’t get with it and do what they ought to have done.
Now we will observe how each of these supplies Greed by what it reports and that each of the not-I’s is greedy for more attention, more approval, more sense of power, more appreciation. It has a false picture that it is a very wonderful, unusual, well developed, highly conscious, and unusually pious state of affairs – a composite picture of self. But it also, along with how pious and wonderful it is, is also very aware that others do not appreciate this great and wonderful thing. So, it wants more appreciation. So this is what we will write after our three headings of how I see Greed working in the self, in John or in Mary. “How I see Vanity.” And we might write out that picture.
And you won’t be able to do it all at one time – you will write a few lines of description and then a little later you will add some more to it until you get the picture pretty well completed. And you might see the whole idea is an illusion. And then we will see the feeling of the necessity to defend this picture, this false picture, this illusion of “John or Mary,” of self. After all, they’re ever changeable, ever flitting; first one runs, then another. So no description could be accurate. But as we put the means of defense, all the time the self is on the defensive – all the time “John” is on the defense, all the time “Mary” is on the defense – putting up the defense to prove that the false picture is correct, that the accusation is all wrong and that anything anyone said about the self is in error. We might begin to see quite an illusion.
THE PURPOSE OF WRITING
Now, there is more than one reason for asking the person, each of us, to write down what we observe – what I, the Observer, observes. Write it down and keep a record of it. Every time that we do anything, you have more than one entry for it to be into the inner man. If I hear something or see something, that is one entrance in – one is through hearing, the other one is through seeing. And if I don’t act upon it, nothing happens. It is just a bit of trivia in the trivia box. But if I write it down, now it is put in the “action center” of the person as well. And if I’ve really looked it over after I’ve written it down, have seen it and heard it, I will value what I have discovered. Now we have another center involved.
And when two or more centers are involved in any given bit of observation, anything that one is aware of, and acted upon, and valued, and seen or heard, that is really seeing. That is being conscious of it. One is only taking notice of it if one only seen it or heard it. One has only taken notice; one has not understood it. One has not brought it truly within the being. It is only in the trivia box. But when it is seen or heard, written and valued, then it is truly one, and it cannot be taken away. So there is a very definite reason for writing it down, keeping a record of it. And as one keeps this record, one sees the value of it.
So, two or more are gathered together.
Two or more of man’s inner centers of activity are gathered together in one activity, then something really happens.
X operates upon it.
Now, as we keep our records we will observe that the self is an illusion, that its whole ideas are all based upon suggestion. It’s based on the ideal that the whole purpose of living is to be non-disturbed, which is an illusion. Now, you cannot force seeing something as an illusion. You can see that it is not valid and as you observe it in action, you can begin to observe that it is an illusion. In other words, really seeing something in a new way is something one experiences again. Report, observe, write, and review, which is to value it. And see the value in what one has done.
Now about this time it might be well to remind us that we’re working on the tenth week. And if we’re somewheres out beyond that and we’re working with discussion numbers 32 or 27 or some other number, Vanity has said, “You don’t need to bother with this.” Greed has said, “Let’s go on and get it over with.” And Pride will now defend your position. But if we may suggest that if these aspects of mammon – Greed, Vanity, and Pride – have one beyond the tenth discussion on the tenth week, that we go back and start over again. Because otherwise these three aspects of the Four Dual Basic Urges, of mammon, will make your entire efforts useless.