Wednesday, 8 August 2012

Your country needs your ignorance

Of course we were not around in those days when we are asked to lay something on the line to defend our freedoms. It was a long time since we had anything to lose, perhaps the only time that as Englishmen we stood to lose anything was back in 1941 when we really had something to lose – our freedom. Those were the days of the blitz and the impending Nazi invasion that never came. I had always wondered what it was like to fight in world war II it was always a bit of a curiosity for me. 

Whenever I felt a little bit of fear I would always think back to what my granddad's life was like. When I was shoving drugs down my neck and dancing at illegal raves at the age of 22 in forests, barns, abandoned warehouses and the like, my granddad was probably sat in an underground bunker receiving his orders for the next bombing sortie. 

My granddad flew in the RAF over the Polestei oilfields of Romania - the most heavily defended airspace in the whole of Europe during WWII. It was the logistical engine of the Nazi war machine churning out virtually all of the oil that they needed for the war effort. As a result the average number of bombing sorties was four before you were shot down. If my granddad was alive today I would have asked him just one thing. How did you feel when you climbed in to that Wellington bomber knowing that the law of averages told you that you would likely lose your life? On your 12th bombing run how did you feel when you stepped in to the plane knowing the law of averages told you that you would die? How did it actually feel, what was the experience like granddad?

I cannot comprehend what he did because I do not know what it is like to put my life on the line. I have nothing but admiration for what he did, the people he defended, the lives he saved, and the free world he played his part in saving. The fact that he climbed in to the plane knowing that he could die, his bravery leaves me in awe. He probably got back from a bombing run feeling relieved he had made it and then went to the operations room to look at which incoming planes made it home, hoping in the back of his mind that his comrades would return, waiting anxiously, sometimes knowing that after a while he would never see his friends again because they had perished fighting the evil of the fascists, and had laid down their lives so we could enjoy the freedoms we enjoy today. I salute you granddad you really are a hero in my eyes.

To put it in perspective my granddad was just one man. One of many who fought against the twisted evil of the Nazi war machine, so in that respect he is not unique, chances are every one of you is somehow related to someone who put their life on the line so we can enjoy these freedoms we take for granted everyday.

That was then though and this is now, back then some sacrifice from everyone was required as we were at war at the time, it was right that everyone stood up and did their part. Now we are left with the legacy, the absolute paragon of human civilisation through the ages. We live in a free global market economy that, barring certain dictatorships, has the most personal freedom that has ever been known, the greatest amount of prosperity at any time in history, and the greatest democracy that this money can buy us.

Stop for a minute and soak it up. Do you actually think about how bad it could of been, or perhaps how great, and what a wonderful place the world is right now? How we have no problems whatsoever and everything is perfect and right with the world as it is? Do you ever stop and think about this? Stop for a minute and reflect on what you really have. What do you have to show for the fruits of your life? Lets face it, without friends and family we would have nothing of value.

The best things in life are free.

But why is it that we can say this to ourselves like a mantra and it does not really seem to do much apart from divert our attention away from the fact that we are all struggling somehow? Why is that we are never completely content and why is it that there is something we can never quite put our finger on, that bugs us? It need not be all the time or it may even be a preoccupation for you, but all through your life there was something just that slight discontent, that little nagging doubt that you cannot quite put your finger on. Lets just outline it for you with an example. Perhaps you are about to get a new promotion and you get it and life is great. Then after the initial buzz you are left feeling some how a little hollow and empty. Not depressed or miserable, but slightly discontented like you did not feel as though you expected to feel. Like you expected a little more from this situation and now you are slightly dissatisfied again.

Appearances are a funny thing.

Appearances are what we seem to place most of our trust in but I am not talking about our visual capabilities as such, I am talking about the way we construe things, how we see them as in “I can see what he is saying” and “I can see how that would pose a problem”. There is a subset of appearances that we see everyday and this is built on top of a framework of concepts and assumptions. It is funny really, we can turn to look at the appearances of our lives but that is about as far we ever look.

We never scratch beneath the surface and on the level of appearances we are happy to ponder over superficial things, take moral postures on issues, criticise peoples actions, lay down our insights, or have a bit of banter and make light of things. However, something is always lost here and whilst we can be accused of taking life too seriously the truth of the matter is that we seem to be more engaged in this level of appearances rather than the actual substance that underpins these appearances. 

Style over substance every time.

The way you view everything is inside a predetermined conceptual framework, every facet of your life is within a framework of right and wrong, should do and should not do, have to , must nots and various other constraints which can take many different forms. There are social expectations imposed by your friends, there are different social constraints imposed by your family, your grandparents etc... Your work place behaviour is different again, you probably feel that you hold back at work and some of you may even feel like you live a double life as such.

From this we can already see that we, at least to some varying degrees, conform to other peoples expectations of us and in a sense there is a societal code that we are obeying. We restrict our behaviour in that respect and this is one of the things that is just below the surface of our lives that does not get a look unless it is bought to your attention. This is trivial though and you could find it in any sociology text book, this really is not a new level of insight in life, however, it does represent a glimpse of the white rabbit scurrying towards the hole. Only, you never dared to follow it you always turned a blind eye.

There are certain patterns at play in your life.

We all know someone who is struggling to get by and forgive me for being so forward, but I know that you are probably not particularly happy either. Lets have a look at your life, all we have to do is scratch beneath the surface and we can see how shallow it really is. So here goes, this is what you do with your life and it is pretty obvious to anyone looking in from the outside. You believe that by buying certain products or waiting for certain events to happen, whatever they maybe, they will make you somehow complete and happy.

This is a simple as we can boil it down this is pretty much the core pattern of your life.

You actually have the beliefs deep down that you actually need these things and your happiness depends on them. Deep down underneath it all, you are bouncing from one thing to the next expecting to find happiness but instead you are finding fleeting feelings of happiness. Then you become disgruntled and try to find the next big thing that is going to make you happy. 

Then you simply rinse and repeat.

You cannot win and the fact that you tell yourself I can't wait until X, or I'll be better when Y happens is self evident. If you are stuck in the same space you become unhappy, if you keep moving you are trying hard to find the next thing that will make you happy and when you get it - be it a new promotion, a relationship, a car, whatever your focus is on, you find that once you get it the buzz wears off and you are left yearning for more. You are trying to fill a gaping void with material goods and validation and you do not even know why.

If you can drop your jumped up pretentious little ego for a minute this is actually your life isn't it?

Even when you look back as a child you used to bug your parents for the latest toy and then a few weeks later you would be bored of it and cast it aside, once you were sucked in to the next advertising campaign for the next hot product. This pattern was started when you were younger and the tragic thing is you did not choose to do this you were simply manipulated in to it. Fast forward a few years and you probably think to yourself that you are above this mentality and likely some of you are even conscious of this but just stop for a minute.

Just stop and look at your life for a minute. 

I want you to be honest here not with me, but with yourself. Just look at your life right now and look at the goals you want to achieve. Try to visualise them and ask yourself will I be perfectly contented once I achieve these goals? If this is the case then what is stopping you from being contented right now? 

How do you expect to be contented then in the future if you cannot be contented right now? Do you think you can just flick a switch?

You are still going to be the same flawed person with more more trivial goods. You have the mind set of a consumer because even though you are above yearning for mummy to buy you the latest thing, you still have this goal orientated attitude to life. Even now you are following the same predictable pattern but you have just lied to yourself and replaced the toys with something more tangible. Really, you are just clinging to hope blindly aren't you?

You actually think everything is going to work out for you eventually don't you?

You actually believe that once things calm down you will just be able to chill out in a few years, be comfortable, life will be calm and relaxed, you will have more time to do those things you wanted to do and more time to spend with your family. You keep clinging to this blind bit of hope like a lifeboat instead of facing up to the reality you live in now, right at this moment. You do everything you can to avoid facing up to this reality right this second. It is never going to work out any differently for you, even if it does you will be the same flawed person you always have been.

I know what you really want, deep down, lurking inside that disturbing little mind of yours.

I know that what you really want is to have the admiration of your peers. Yes, you even fantasise about people standing in awe of you, you even fantasise about your boss congratulating you on your latest project, your friends telling you that your ace, I bet you even compare how many people turn up to your birthday party so people don't think your a loser don't you? Yes, I am talking to you. You are floating around in the endless cesspool of failure you call your life, which is lived in the service of what you revere as the absolute paragon of human accomplishment; vanity.

'Vanity of vanities, and all is vanity.' (Ecclesiastes)

In fact, you even give people the power to have this opinion of you and enslave you in to the social hierarchy. Yes, you care so much about what people think of you and your life is based around this game of vanity. Every time you get dressed you look in the mirror and wonder what people will think of you. You walk around the street looking at everyone else or averting their gaze wondering what they think of you. You spend all your life wondering how people perceive you, and trying to impress them, and this is pretty much the primary focus of your life. Oh what? You have other interests as well? Sure you do, but just try and notice how many times you think about other peoples opinion of you. If you actually tried to notice consciously, you would find that this represents one of the driving forces of your life. Why? Because you have been socially engineered this way.

What is it like at work for you?

How many people do you see with a smile on their face? How many people look glum on your way to work, those empty grey faces staring down the road, how many times do you curse the car in front of you just because they miss a two second gap in the traffic and it threatens that you will be a minute late for work. Yes, I am talking to you. Would you choose to do it if you had to? Would you choose your shitty £10 an hour job if you didn't have to? And what about those of you who earn good money and don't enjoy your job? What excuse do you tell yourself? Do you tell yourself that your family needs this money, do you set yourself little goals to work towards and think I'll be happy then, like it is something you can just decide to be at the flick of a switch? You actually do this don't you?

You see friend, the problem is that we have lost sight of what really matters. We actually believe money is the ends in which we have to work towards, when in actual fact it is merely the vehicle that we are supposed to work with. You have not thought long or hard about this have you? Either you are enslaved wishing you had more money or you are enslaved to the thought of having more money for its own sake. You get more and you just spend more, you are never any better off you are just treading water doing the same thing following the same pattern you have been programmed to follow.

The thing is, if you take a step back out of it for a moment you actually think this is a hard earned freedom the really ironic thing is that you actually believe this is a fundamental freedom that you have been afforded. I cannot begin to tell you how naïve and brainwashed you are. You think that if you pay out some money for the latest product then everything will be better, you even turn a blind eye when it is pretty obvious that the world is not going to be able to sustain this level of consumption for too much longer. No, you would rather spend your life working a job you hate to buy things you do not need, to fight each other over scrambling up a ladder that leads to a mountain of bull shit with a bunch of feckless morons who you secretly despise, and all for a boss who you wish you could tell him to shove his job right up his arse.

This, incredibly, is the very thing that you hold as a sacred freedom and as something of value.

This vacuous routine that you never once stopped to question whether it was a worthwhile pursuit, you just went along with it because you followed the rest of the sheep. John Keynes, the guy who you know as the Keynesian father of economics stated 'The market was made for human beings - not human beings to serve the market'. This is where you have failed to see what is happening but don't worry it is not your fault, we were all sold this lie. You see, we are blind to this unless we take a step back, the adherence to this system is indoctrinated in to you at school, many of you (although I believe a few of you will have done) have never even stopped to question this framework that structures our lives to a large degree.

So, I will ask you what happened when the Iraq war kicked off, where were you and what did you do about it? Did you go to work and ignore the protest, or did you jump on a moral grandstand and try to tell everyone about the lies the government told. I mean lets face it, the government clearly lied about weapons of mass destruction whichever way you look at it and then in order to justify their lie they focussed on the morality of freeing the Iraqi people from the evil tyrant Saddam Hussein. True, he was an evil man but the government does not have a track record for doing nice things. We need only look at the times when we have stood aside while genocides happen to see that humanitarian aims are superfluous next to the goals of the big oil companies. Lets look at who won in this war, the arms companies and the oil companies, all at the expense of you, yes you the British taxpayer.

What is striking is that you did nothing, you just shrugged your shoulders and carried on going to work. You did not even flinch when Tony Blair's grinning, conniving face appeared on your TV screen telling you one of the biggest lies to your face. You just went to work and wondered which new thing you were going to buy. Or failing that you cared about how people would think about you if you jumped on a moral grandstand and started talking about it.

Amazing that most of you just stood aside and allowed this to happen and you did not even bat an eye lid. You just shrugged your shoulders and pretended it was not happening. You lied to yourself and started to believe something else to divert your attention away from the fact that you had just been lied to and you swallowed it straight down without the slightest bit of resistance.

Or you just shrugged your shoulders even though you knew it was a lie.

What you did not realise is that this is not the only time you have been lied to. As a result of you turning a blind eye every time you have been shafted you have simply got in to a pattern of repeating this behaviour. It really does boil down to elementary psychological techniques, you are just being manipulated like a pawn. You will never achieve anything of value because it is all based on lies. This system forms the fundamental basis for your life and it is a vacuous, empty lie therefore, a life in servitude of this is worth nothing. I am not judging you, the point is you have spent your whole life looking at appearances when underneath it all underpinning it, is a toxic and foul bunch of lies that have never been challenged. These lies are the worm that is eating its way in to the very fabric of our society and the trouble is some of you even know this is happening.

You need to look at the substance of what your life is based on because appearances are deceptive. Look at that TOWIE program for all that is wrong with our society for instance. The tragic thing is people hold this up as a shining example of the absolute paragon of human accomplishment. A bunch of retarded fucks who would lose a battle of the wits with a cheese sandwich, yet people actually aspire to be like them and (god help us) even try to imitate them. I am not here to bag these people in particular but in many other areas of our society we have other lies such as religion, propaganda news broadcasts (admittedly not as bad as America), companies feeding us with sugar laden chemical crap, need I go on? Start to look at your life and you will see the lies you blissfully ignore or actively pedal to yourself everyday but it takes a shred of courage to face up to the truth.

'The opposite of the truth is not a lie the opposite of truth is cowardice' (Stepvhen)

How do we change it? We change it from within, we move to a new paradigm where capital and its influence is rendered inert. Money is not the problem and neither is capitalism. It is simply our greed and vanity that has been socially engineered in to us. We spend our lives working for a market that was originally supposed to distribute goods among us. The power of the market has simply become too great and we are subservient to the very mechanism that is supposed to work for us as human beings. That is where we went wrong. 

What we need is to be the change we wish to see in the world. Now this is a big ask but it is not impossible any more. How do we just change to a paradigm of no greed?

Instead of making our world a better place for all of its inhabitants, all your hard work currently goes to things like this

Maybe we will never get it perfect and there will be some disparities but when we see this kind of thing, it shows you that this is what we have really achieved. This is the sum total of all of our hard work, to support the lifestyles of leeches who have never contributed anything. That is exactly what you are achieving now, whilst blindly clinging on to the hope that everything will work out for you eventually. You have just been duped your whole life but the thing is it is all based on a single lie that underpins this society, which once challenged, means you can step out from the machine and live freely. We can create a world in which we are truly free and we can live without being in service of a lie.

You can walk away in denial but why change the habit of a lifetime? Once a failure, always a a failure and for the rest of your days you will live a life blind to possibility and carry on the self serving greed and hopeless vanity as you have always done. Is that the shallow endeavours of your life, did you ever want anything better for yourself and the human race?

If all you ever do is live in servitude of a lie how do you expect to achieve anything of value?

You are achieving nothing with your life but perpetuating the problems as they are currently. Maybe my harsh critique was unfair on you but the fact remains you live your life in service to a lie, that requires your active participation to maintain the façade. You are the problem truth be told, you let it happen willingly.

What can one person do? Well imagine if my granddad and all his comrades thought like you. We would be eating sourkraut and speaking German by now. I know he and his comrades would probably turn in their graves knowing what a legacy of putrid, dishonest weaklings who let themselves become enslaved by their vanity and greed thinking they were free.

'None are more hopelessly enslaved than those who falsely believe they are free' (Goethe)

If he knew that he was going to put his life on the line and endured all that hell just so you could live your vain life, I would not expect him to step within 10 miles of an airfield. Is there a shred of humanity left in you? More to the point, do you even fucking care?

The new paradigm is a life without self image:


Simo Kovanen said...

Hmm. Thank you for this post, very provocative.

I like to think of myself as someone who sees more to our social functioning than most others, in that why I do what I do is quite heavily influenced by my need for acceptance.

But what I personally find even more disheartening is, that while knowing as much as I know, I still fail to act, I still convince myself that the same failing algorithm will one day produce different results.

I've been looking into a life without self image now, but I find it hard to as honest as required. There just seem to be these blockades that just turn attempts in honesty to confusion.

Anonymous said...

i'm not sure of the character of this text, is it not too aggressive so that these so called ignorants actually read the text?
or is it though love that the text is portraying?

Gh0$T V1Ru$ said...

Hi Simo, thanks for your comment.

>>>>I like to think of myself as someone who sees more to our social functioning than most others, in that why I do what I do is quite heavily influenced by my need for acceptance.>>>>

At the end of the day we are human beings and we all want acceptance in various ways, what struck me was the degree to which I used to orientate my life to get this acceptance.

>>>>But what I personally find even more disheartening is, that while knowing as much as I know, I still fail to act, I still convince myself that the same failing algorithm will one day produce different results.>>>>

It is like the computer analogy, if you leave the same algorithm on there that is programmed it will output the same results for all eternity. The hardware is the product of evolution, so that is rarely what goes wrong, however, our operating system is derived from a rule governed database that acquires preset responses (sometimes they are very law like relations think of fear of spiders for example) to certain situations, and very often instills default behavioural roles in to us.

You make the excellent point that you want the same algortihm to produce different results and we see this manifested in hope for the future. The trouble with the false self is it denies you the ability to be honest. Rather than face up to your shortcomings it tends to project the blame on others and sends you looking for excuses. How is one of the ways the false self hides your shortcomings? By telling you everything will be alright in the future. That saves you from the responsibility to facing up to your life as it is, since by fantasy projecting about owning your own house, getting your dream job to replace the shit one you have and having a better life in future is deferring the responsibility to address the problems in your life, hence it is just a repeat pattern.

My point is, there is nothing wrong with wanting better things, desire is a healthy part of life but when we pin our hopes on to our desires, then we are just clinging and craving for things to improve our situation and this often means we become identified with it.

>>>>I've been looking into a life without self image now, but I find it hard to as honest as required. There just seem to be these blockades that just turn attempts in honesty to confusion.>>>>

Have you tried TS or LU? That is what we are there for, to help you see through the fog. The block to your honesty is simply the beliefs that you hold.

Gh0$T V1Ru$ said...

I wanted this to be very hard hitting, where did I get the inspiration for this post from?
Well, many examples were from my life and I was drunk when I wrote it so that was why it has the intensity. Don't forget, I was more ignorant than most and I have followed many of these patterns, so I am speaking from experience and being honest. What struck me particularly was one time I was out for a curry on my birthday many years ago and I remember being aware that I was relieved that I had a good turn out. It struck me as odd that I would be worried about it but that is the kind of doubts that we can have as human beings when our lives revolve around what people think of us.

Also, my granddad died before I was born but he survived the war and as I got older and had all these “supposed worries” that were a major theme in my life. I used to wonder a lot about how brave he was and really I had nothing to worry about but far from putting things in perspective, it made no difference comparing the hell he went through and my comparative walk in the park. I had made myself to be a victim of an “unfair and unjust” world. Rather than face up to the reality I was faced with I clung to hope and blamed circumstance, my parents, everything except for myself. Now I don't blame anyone, my life was simply the product of a warped fantasy where I was indulged in a vain life. If I can share my puddled delusion back then so others don't suffer like I did then that is all I really can do.

There are two kinds of people, those who it resonates with somewhat and those who shrug their shoulders and walk away. I hope that this hits hard but the point is not to make people feel bad about themselves, but to be penetrating through to the core patterns in their life and illuminate them. We are all bozos on the bus mate, and we are all ignorant to some degree, if some people can see that these patterns permeate their lives then maybe they can address them rather than shrugging their shoulders clinging to the blind hope that one day everything is going to magically better for them. Some of this is uncomfortable but facing up to reality requires courage.

Simo Kovanen said...

I'm actually in LU, just started with a guide. I'm just worried... I saw a thread where you were trying to help a guy to look at reality, and yes, the guy was being analogous and poetic to a point where I had no idea what was being said, but I couldn't help thinking, am I like this, too?

Many times, when honestly inquiring into my thoughts or belief systems, my mind so eloquently interrupts the looking by starting to faff about whatever I'm doing. In my spare time (~when I'm alone) I tend to fantasize and tell stories in my head, have conversations in preparation to situation that will probably never happen.

You said that in the end you had to force yourself to look, could you explain this? How do you force yourself to look? How do you put effort into something that, at least for me, doesn't seem like it would benefit from extra effort?

Gh0$T V1Ru$ said...

>>>I'm actually in LU, just started with a guide. I'm just worried... I saw a thread where you were trying to help a guy to look at reality, and yes, the guy was being analogous and poetic to a point where I had no idea what was being said, but I couldn't help thinking, am I like this, too?>>>

We start off from a position of delusion in any enquiry, so to start with we speak in metaphors and analogies, since we cannot describe what it really is we are trying say. So, we start to distill these down and see that they are generic descriptions with no content and this seems to be a first step. Don't worry, you just need to investigate how these things have no relevance to reality initially.

>>>Many times, when honestly inquiring into my thoughts or belief systems, my mind so eloquently interrupts the looking by starting to faff about whatever I'm doing. In my spare time (~when I'm alone) I tend to fantasize and tell stories in my head, have conversations in preparation to situation that will probably never happen.>>>

That makes you a normal human being just like everyone else my friend! We all do this and we tie ourselves in conceptual knots when trying to look, so know that this is just something we all do.

>>>You said that in the end you had to force yourself to look, could you explain this? How do you force yourself to look? How do you put effort into something that, at least for me, doesn't seem like it would benefit from extra effort?>>>

How did I force myself to look? Well that is the golden question that I wish I could answer but when I was LOOKING I eventually realised that I had not even looked. All I had done had thought so hard about it I had developed a headache that lasted a few weeks. When it dawned on me that I had not really LOOKED then the mind seemed to throw up a lot of resistance to doing so and I felt a lot of mental tension but I took the plunge and looked at reality for a few seconds and that was it. Look at the table, then turn your awareness inside and look for the self. It is that simple, really it is like eye of the needle simple it is just that we cannot muster the honesty to even look at reality without colouring it and this is what seems to cause the problems hence why we spend time breaking down beliefs that colour our perception.

The best metaphor for looking is imagine being in a Welsh valley where it is foggy and you cannot see your hand in front of your face. You are searching around in the fog for what the valley looks like but wherever you turn there is fog that is preventing you from seeing the valley. Eventually as you climb the sides, the fog begins to thin and then when you get near the top you can see over the fog and the edges of the valley, then you see what is really there. The fog is not the valley, it is part of the landscape but it is not the valley itself. Sorry for being metaphorical but really it is not complex, it is the simplest of things it is JUST honest looking at reality.

Simo Kovanen said...

One more thing if you don't mind:

What is your current experience on how thought is experienced?

What I noticed to day (and it feels like I've never been able to been this honest before even though it's probably BS) is that when a thought happens, there's no awareness of it beginning. No me there. If, however, I try to be aware of the next thought that arises, what happens is the thought that comes is intercepted by a second thought that says "you just had a thought there!"

There doesn't seem to be any direct awareness for thoughts, just

thought -> stored into memory -> awareness of memory -> new thought saying you just had a thought

Gh0$T V1Ru$ said...

Hi Simo, you are very welcome to post enquiries in TS, I want to keep the blog focussed on aspects of non duality.

So, you have started looking and you see that there is no awareness at the beginning of the thought. OK this is a little cloudy here, are you trying to say that there is awareness of reality and then suddenly thoughts just pop up unannounced?

Then the interception happens where the mind tries to claim ownership of the things that happen. You need to investigate this fully Simo, you need to look at all the ways in which the mind claims ownership over experience. Try the old "who am I" enquiry and try to find out all the ways in which you identify with things. What you will discover is that this is just a complex web of identity but is not grounded in anything apart from various assumptions that there is an owner of this identity.

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