I consider I have a responsibility to inquire, to stop living with fear, to get to the very bottom of things. Together is an abstraction, along with all else, and so not so much. What is largely pictured here as dialogue, this method or process which is considered to reveal patterns of thought, can be helpful, but in the end each person inhabits an isolated state, and has to deal with that
**All words are abstractions, but they can be used and not taken literally as “dividing anything.” In what way is anyone isolated? Has anyone or anything vanished? Isolation is fictional. Where do you see isolation?
Where do I see isolation…well where do I not? I see isolation in each and every instance of division, in every expression of conflict, in the violence, social, economic and political that runs throughout the entirety of human discourse. I see it in having friends, which is the same as having enemies, I see it in groups and associations - everything the human is as an evasion and flight from the fact. Why do you think human beings the world over are loosing their heads if they are in touch with anything actual?
But it’s not an actual isolation. More like self pity, fear, no?. The inevitable feeling that is the result of believing oneself to be an ‘individual’. “I’m an individual and now I feel all alone in a cold alien world, etc.” But that’s not the case is it? There isn’t ‘division’ in that actual way. If this is so, then feelings of isolation are to be looked in the same way as fear, anger, jealousy, loneliness etc., as a characteristic of the ‘self’. …Though yes, the ‘self’ will make people “loose their heads”>
We have to believe there are humans who see clearly what the rest of us cannot see due to our conditioning, convictions, and predilections, because we don’t want to be that solitary soul whose responsibility is to awaken others. We want to follow a leader because it’s all we know.
The one who sees never wanted to see - he/she couldn’t help it. It was their nature not to pull the wool over their own eyes…or at least to have realized that they had.
**It seems that using a language which implies duality or separation makes it rather difficult to share ‘observations’, which have no separation. K suggested that having an image of another creates ‘division’. But in a choiceless awareness of what is, are we really divided, or still in relationship? The ‘division’ is imagined. And when the brain mistakes this ‘imagined division’ as “actual,” we behave in accordance to this false thought-construction, and ‘act divisively’.
Isolation basically means separated from. But the actuality is that the Universe is an undivided Whole. And humanity is not isolated from any of it. And that’s observable. We’re creating all of the violence because we’ve been programmed by the culture to believe we’re separate, to mistake dualistic thought images and conceptual identities as truth. But these words, ideas, and images in the head are just abstract imagery. If you dissect a human being and try to locate a me, I, Howard, Christian, Muslim, American, or Russian, you’ll never find any of it outside of the imagination. We are always in relationship to everything. It may qualify as a horrible relationship, but the separation is imaginary. K was using the word ‘relationship’ in an uncommon manner when he said you aren’t in relationship if you have an image of the other. What that really means is we’re caught in an illusion. But we are actually still in relationship, it’s just the we aren’t paying attention to what is, we’re looking at images of each other.
**Concepts are concepts, and seeing is seeing. Some concepts are coherent with what is, and some aren’t. Do we have a goal? Or are we simply interested in observing what is, as clearly as possible? Are we interested in seeing what is true and what is false, with regard to what we’ve been told, and who we are? Are we interested in understanding the root of human conflict? All of that seems urgent to our well-being, as humanity, as the world.
You’re idealizing. There’s always limitation when thought is the instrument of inquiry, and thought is all the conditioned mind has to work with.
I’m not idealising, it’s what i see and i can explain why i say so.
See, ‘inquiry’ means looking at something without any beliefs.
When we inquire within ourselves, but not together, we again and again caught up with the knowledge/beliefs/experiences/memory we have i.e. the past. So, it’s not that easy, and we may come into wrong conclusion. Only by inquiring together, we may come out from own beliefs and reach an ‘agreement’ which may be a ‘fact’.
Thanks for the response Howard, and for the earlier one about dialogue which was very interesting, and which I will get around to answering, as that one may run and run!
I understand what you are saying here throughout this post. The division may be imagined, exist only in or as imagination, but that rightly transfers attention to the whole process of imagination, which brings one back to self, and the death of self, the psychological, imagination. That process has not ceased, and the isolation it is, is a powerfully real thing. The isolation being from that which is immeasurable. To understand isolation I must look at it very deeply in myself, since it is isolation I am, and not non-isolation. But that embodies fear, for which all the forms of joining and seeking comfort are an escape. When the mob at the Capitol gathers as part of something they feel they are all sharing in, which is greater than their self, and which provides them with a great sense of comfort, they are in fact deep in isolation, so its effect, its impact is real. What would it take for each of those brains who are even now contemplating further violence to have an insight into what lies out back of who they are? And yes they are nevertheless in relationship, because they can never not be.
Edit: And I should add I do not see them as different to myself, they are myself. They are my fear, they are my violence.
Those things may seen as constituent elements of it, maintaining it, with isolation as the summation of it all, or isolation is the fact, and those things are bred from that. Can I see isolation, what it actually is, when I am fearful of it, or are concerned to have it transformed into non-isolation, or seek to diminish its reality for the comfort that affords me? The issue of isolation, feeds into the one of being effectively incommunicado, despite all the attempts at communication going on all around, and of the ability to ‘meet’ if that is actually needed, or is real. There is something about isolation that cannot be wished away or kept hidden.
Yes it seems to be at the core. Is it a remnant in the old brain of the inherent terror of being separated from the mother? Of being abandoned? The ‘weaning’ is never total? The unconscious force behind our need for attachments?
What is the original of it, given it does have an origin? When the mother is insecurity, and the whole reality she is exposed to is insecurity, is there something that can prevent the infant’s slide into insecurity too?
Yes, and that’s why we do it. We need to confront our biases, our conditioned responses. Self-knowledge comes through rigorous honesty with oneself. Inquiring with others can be helpful, but ultimately, we have to discover what we are psychologically by being aware of our own thought process and our responses.
**If we get caught up in the knowledge, inquiring within ourselves, then we aren’t looking without beliefs, right? It may be easier to get caught in illusion ‘by oneself’. But being in a group inquiry doesn’t mean we aren’t still caught in belief…to my observation. Being aware of what is, alone or together, can be very revealing. But in looking together, we can all be learning together.
This is an all-or-nothing statement. It’s absolutist. Are you so sure, so certain, or are you open to the possibility that it’s a cognitive distortion?
Have you considered the effect this belief has on you? Convinced that you can’t discover and learn about your own thinking without others makes you helplessly dependent on others.
Furthermore, “an agreement which may be fact” is only an agreement until it is ascertained to be a fact or not a fact. This much you can work out in your own mind once you see the falseness of what you believe to be true.