Thursday, August 1, 2013

The Pragmatic I....Maybe

“Don’t be a victim” said the commercial. Then it showed some woman who was laying her hand against her head, apparently she was supposed to look like a swindled elderly person. To me she looked like a well formed woman. This probably has something to do with my age rather than the quality of casting. That being aside I got to thinking about the idea of victimhood. When does one pass into this realm where we are a victim?

When I started observing for this phenomena in my life I found that it was so prevalent as both an exclaimed statement, “I will not be a victim!” as said by my gun totting, confederate flag wielding woman friend that I had a secret liberal crush on fifteen or so years ago, and as a phenomenal practice: giving shit away and then saying, “I wish I didn't have to give that away” as my friend who is really into saying stuff like that. I have seen many permutations of this both in those that I know and those that I have heard of or read. A long list of victimhood.

What is it that is so horrific about this? It is a state of lack. Of complete lack, it seems to me, and that this lack of creates a psychological rift of incompleteness. Then when the incompleteness is added to, or seemingly, by either an unwanted, but unrefuted request for a thing, or a confrontation of physical power, the individual in this state becomes incensed or morose. Their illusory I, the one that cannot be found, is sparked by a culmination of imputed conditions and their emotional state is rendered fucked. When this state is habitual victimhood is attained and the various manifestations of this arise.

How this is combated, or at least in this culture, is, for lack of a better term-therapy. This therapy is not negative, exactly, but it is arising another I-one that is deeply selfish in the sense that it must be served. “I cannot do that because I need to have a break”, which is a valid statement in some cases but what I have seen is that this too becomes habitual and we move from victimhood to self serving...prick.

It forgets the idea that we aren’t here for ourselves. Even in the mundane sense of, lets say, parenthood. We don’t, or at least, I didn’t get into parenthood to think that this was something that I need a break from. It is a lifestyle choice, to us a modern title for it. That sometimes I go out with just my wife is not a break from my children but time with my spouse. That I cannot sing and swallow at the same time (I am not a Mongolian throat singer despite the similar geography of my people) is not saying I am taking a break from singing or swallowing. Both wonderful activities.

But on a non-mundane level we realize that the reification of the self to such a degree is not reasonable. The I cannot be found. Where is it? Does it reside in the body? Then what if we took apart the body, one by one. Is it in the arm? no. Is it in the leg? No. At some point the delimbing process would get us, most likely, to a place that we would say that it no longer me. Then you put it together again one by one until there is a ‘you’. Then take that final piece away and you reach a ‘no’. Then both the blob and the part are not the self. Then how is it possible that when I put it together it becomes the “I”? If both parts are not the I putting them together cannot produce the I. We can do this with parts of the brain too. It comes to the same conclusion. You can’t put two things together that are not the thing and make them the thing. It is like clanging two rocks together and expecting it to be a tree. So what is it?

When we delineate the space in a jar and the space outside the jar it is an imputation. When we break the jar the space within the jar and outside of the jar are inseparable. The actual space was not changed at all just our frame of reference. Space was neither made more full or less full by the reference point. It was, to use a concept, always full and complete.

This is the ultimate state of all things. Of the Human Being of whom is blessed because it can cognize this reality. One is always full. There is nothing that the Being lacks. That it needs food and shelter does not detract from the fullness of being. In fact, from a fullness of being space the needs of food, shelter, etc. become mightily decreased (even in my tainted and weak self I did a ten day fast and found it amazing how little I needed to participate in the biological aspects of my life. I did 3 of these in a year and each session was increasingly more powerful in how little I actually needed).

As we get closer to this fact we enter a third stage from that of victimhood, selfhood, and into transcendent Self. The characteristics of this is generosity of life, materials, etc. It may even seem to be similar, the same as, the material affect of that of the victim e.g. that they have their belongings taken/given away. The difference being the mind state of the transcendent self. From a place of plenty, the transcendent understands the fallacy of ownership-what can be stolen that is already given? I know of a nun that was raped who, I believe, knew this. Her statement after the fact, through a battered face, was luminous. She said, “I pray to God that it alleviated his lust and that he is not afflicted with it anymore.” My God! That is a Nun! I will follow you dear one.

The role of the self is to pull one out of the passive victim. I have seen this mentality work. With the secular methodology to reifying the I in order to have a space created by this effort to contemplate the next step up. Both victimhood and selfhood are selfish with selfhood being able to have a chance at being pragmatic in its arising. The victim is inert, impotent, forever damned. The self is active, potent, and traveling the path. However, if the path becomes samsaric in the sense that it cyclical it comes only back the I and reifies this position more. This then becomes a negative state instead of pragmatic. It becomes a place of lack because the I is in constant need of being fed, it becomes negatively consumerist, a materialist endeavor where love is tit for tat.

Transcendence becomes also a state, a stage of the remnants of the Self becomes active in its actual demise. Reasoning becomes paramount in that activities illuminate the Truth of the absence of an I. This state is often encountered with a great deal of resistance if not outright hostility. However, it is also, usually, engendered with a great deal of respect for its efforts are still seen as noble if not foolish e.g. the way that Gandhi was often portrayed by the British press. The hostility is the inertia of systems, concepts, unable to deal with a drive that is conceptless. Systems wish to live and those that have been subsumed by these systems e.g. bureaucrats  (nihilists in the modern form) will be the minions that work against these efforts.

I believe the effort of the transcendent, once at this stage, are very hard to be lead off. I think that this stage the realization of the nature of things are so strong that the body is not clung to with enough vigor to be ransomed. That is what the systems use-”You need to make a living” in its softer if not more insidious manifestation or, “I will stick this red hot rod up your ass unless you confess to being a ____________” it its more overt manner if less insidious. It is why, I think, the journeys of many of the religious traditions, or one of the many reasons, they believe in celibacy. I do not think that it is because of a hate of sex, as it is sometimes manifested, but to be able to place individuals within a system who have only their bodies to be ransomed. If one has lead this life correctly, the life of a renunciate, then the body, or the loss of it, is not much to be worked up over.

Use the I pragmatically. Use it until it is no longer useful. Give up this methodology before it becomes instead of a stairway to a higher state, a weight around your neck dragging you deeper.