Sunday, January 07, 2007

Truth and How to Avoid it

If truth exists, it seems that it is something that we would want to align ourselves with, no? For truth is what works, isn't it?

Not necessarily. With psychoanalysis, Freud articulated an entire system of thought that essentially comes down to a means for investigating the many ways in which human beings lie to themselves. Thus, in a sense, these lies "work" -- i.e., they have a function -- or they wouldn't have been erected in the first place.

For example, one routinely sees adults who were abused or neglected as children by their parents. This is the truth. But this truth doesn't "work" for an infant, because it would make living intolerably painful -- impossible, really. Therefore, in order to go on living, the child erects the lie, "my parents love me. There is something wrong with me." Interestingly, on some level, one must know the truth in order to erect the lie. Psychoanalytic therapy, in its broadest sense, is simply a search for truth, or what Bion called O.

What is really going on between two people, beneath all the words we use to conceal things? One of Bion's maxims was for the analyst to "suspend memory, desire, and understanding" before each therapy session, in order to try to let the truth emerge of its own accord.

I remember once reading that Bion didn't even want to know if a patient was married or not, for this is something he would determine for himself. For many couples are "married," but not really. This word, "marriage" -- imagine the extraordinary range of situations it covers! My parents were married. I am married. But certain outward formalities aside, there is little commonality between the situations. In other words, to a certain extent, the word conceals more than it reveals. For example, in the case of my parents, to say that they had a longstanding and committed detente would probably be closer to the truth. Or at least not as misleading. In fact, another purpose of psychoanalytic therapy would be to help such people actually become capable of marriage, as opposed to remaining faithful -- 'til death do they part -- to their mind parasites.

Is truth something we are moving toward, or something we possess? Science operates by way of hypothesis and experimentation. It is never complete, so in a sense, it can only regard total truth as a distant possibility, something we hail from afar (nevertheless, a fascinating presumption rich with unarticulated metaphysical implications that converge upon religion).

Religion is the opposite. It presents us with Truth that is said to be a priori, including symbolized metaphysical truths that simply cannot not be. These perennial truths may be inferred from (or more properly "seen" in) the structure of Being itself, at least by some.

And yet, each of these situations may be turned on its head, both in principle and in practice. For science actually begins with certain immutable principles -- its own version of "revelation" -- such as the assumptions that the world is intelligible, that it obeys underlying laws that apply to all of creation, and that all of reality may be reduced to material processes.

For its part, religion has its own version of truth-seeking (as opposed to truth-possessing). It does not proceed along the lines of hypothesis and experimentation, but of purification, illumination, assimilation or interiorization, and union. Whereas the truth-seeking of science is more of a mechanical enterprise (at least superficial "worker bee" type science), religion is more of an organismic, or living process of metabolism and growth.

In religion, truth is increasingly understood and metabolized, which has the practical effect of widening and deepening our being. Thus, to say that this or that person is "religious" is about as useful as saying that they are married. "Religious," like "married," embraces so many diverse states and stations that it is almost futile to use the word. Bin Laden is religious. George Bush is religious. To certain unsophisticates for whom the world of religious truth is a closed book, this amounts to the same thing. It is a lie, but not really -- more a simultaneous confession and confirmation of utter ignorance. For irreligious people to pronounce on religion is exactly analogous to pre-scientific people pronouncing on the structure of subatomic reality.

In an interesting article entitled Two Strategies for Avoiding Truth, Arnold King notes that people typically "highlight information and arguments that support their prior beliefs. When they encounter contrary evidence, they engage in 'motivated skepticism,' seeking to undermine the credibility or minimize the significance of the adverse information." Findings that confirm a hypothesis "are accepted more or less at face value," while those that don't are scrutinized and picked apart.

With regard to politics, King writes that "the great mass of people form their beliefs with little regard for facts or logic.... Most voters lack elementary knowledge of our political system, they hold views that are ideologically jumbled and logically inconsistent, and their opinions change over time in ways that suggest almost random behavior." This is most certainly true, but it simply mirrors the jumbled grab-bag of notions, hunches, ruling ideas, temperamental inclinations, rumors, prejudices, biases, and truth-avoiding mechanisms that constitute the riven mind of the typical person. Truth is not a high priority for most people, much less consistency.

To the contrary: for most people, it is fair to say that lying -- primarily to oneself -- is a matter of the utmost urgency. And one of the best ways to prevent truth from "coalescing" is to remain in a fractured, "two-dimensional" state. In other words, if you think of truth as something that emerges in a third dimension of the mind by coherently bringing together a mass of information, one way to prevent that from occurring is to simply stay down in the world of incoherent particulars, and then convince oneself that that is the real world. For such a person, you can point out their inconsistencies all day long, but it will have no effect.

This is something that all seasoned therapists realize. The truth is there staring you in the face, but it is of no use to the patient, because they don't yet have the mental space where it can be "entertained." It is analogous to watching a color film on a black and white TV. You can broadcast in color, but the set will simply transform it to black and white.

King notes something that leftist intellectuals do not wish to understand, which is that "markets process information more effectively than does the political process." He quotes the economist Tim Harford, who goes so far as to suggest that the market is the "world of truth." For example, King suspects that "it is easier for market forces to drive a bad firm out of business than it is for political forces to extinguish a policy that fails to meet the objectives that purportedly drive its enactment."

Why would that be? Because markets are simply what happens. They are a result of what people actually desire and what they are willing to do to fulfill that desire. There is not much room for a lie to enter the equation -- although that's not quite right, for it is fair to say that most human desires are inextricably linked to the avoidance of some vital truth; most of what people want is a pale substitute for what they actually want. But who am I to force people to want something other than what they want? That is the difference between a leftist and a classical liberal.

At the very least, the market represents the truth about what free individuals choose for themselves, which is certainly preferable to leftist economics, which is a lie about the unvarnished truth of what people actually want, for whatever reason, high or low. In other words, it is foolish to think that you can radically intervene in the market from the top down, in order to try to alter human nature, which is what it is -- at least when when it isn't being even less than that. But that is what politicians end up doing, both Democrats and Republicans, resulting in a "competition to promise the undeliverable," which in turn inevitably tends toward a "greater accretion of government power, giving the elites more to fight over."

Given the the profound need for humans to lie to themselves, there is simply no way to eradicate leftism at this time -- perhaps ever. For it is an inevitable reflection of the human state, at least at this point in our evolution. This is why the Republicans, when given power, behave almost as badly as Democrats. After all, both parties must market themselves to the identical human needs, which include the need for illusions. Have you ever thought about the fact that there is almost always a more or less 1:1 relationship between Democrats and Republicans? How can this be? Because both parties are constantly adjusting and adapting their message to the shifting emotional needs of the citizenry at any given time -- needs which are not rooted in reality, to say the least.

It is sometimes said that two persons "do not understand each other" or "are too different to be able to understand each other." Now such a thing does not exist when the two persons involved are normal, good, and think in accordance with the truth.

If two persons "do not understand each other," that means: that one of them is stupid; or that one of them has bad character, or in any case an inferior character; or that one of them is mentally abnormal. Or again, that both persons are in error, but in different ways; or that both of them are stupid or bad, or abnormal; or inferior in some respect....

Temperaments may be as different as can be, but intelligent, virtuous, and mentally sound men will always be able to understand each other; this possibility is in the very nature of man, who by definition is capable of thought since he has the gift of objectivity.
--F. Schuon

83 Comments:

Anonymous Integralist said...

A question, Bob: Do you give any credence to developmental stages? If so, do you see a "hierarchy of religion," so to speak?

For example, in a previous post I cited the Gebserian cultural stages, which have personal correlates: archaic, magic, mythic, rational, relativistic, integral. Do you see those as basically sound? And if so, do you see that each stage has its own form of religion in terms of "deep structure"?

Furthermore, where would you place bin Laden's religion vs. Bush's?

A couple other tings...

But who am I to force people to want something other than what they want? That is the difference between a leftist and a classical liberal.

How is your stance here different than anarchy? (Please understand that I am not rhetorically criticizing you, but honestly curious).

Temperaments may be as different as can be, but intelligent, virtuous, and mentally sound men will always be able to understand each other; this possibility is in the very nature of man, who by definition is capable of thought since he has the gift of objectivity. (Schuon).

Yes, I agree--and especially in the light of developmental stages. Thus two people of a given stage, no matter how tempermentally different, should be able to understand each other (also given adequate "cultural translation").

But again, do you see more differentiation than merely people who are "intelligent, virtuous, and mentally sound" and people who are not? Is not there a wide spectrum?

Let's look at it numerically: for the same of discussion, let's say humans evolve from stages 1 on up, with no cap; and let's say that stage 5, if healthy, equates with Schuon's people of intelligence, virtue, and mental soundness. Now would a stage 5 person be able to understand a stage 6 person? To an extent--they would be able to understand everything up to "stage 5ness," but they wouldn't be able to hear stage 6, because they don't have the corresponding mental space (as you say at some point in your post).

Now the tricky thing is, people at any given stage will generally translate anything "higher" into something "lower." So how does a person at stage 5 begin to recognize when something is stage 6?

I will briefly suggest something, although with the understanding that this is much easier said (realized) than done (actualized): A stage must recognize--and truly understand--the truthful aspects of another stage, to be able to discriminate what is higher or lower, what needs to be let go of and what needs to be embraced, because stages "transcend and include" the previous stages (transcend the limitations and include the core aspects, like a architectural structure being built from the foundation upward).

A final note: Ideologies aren't always bound to a single stage, often having elements of different stages within them. Thus a healthy developmental path isn't necessarily a process of "lily-padding" from one ideology to another (as in conversion), but the evolution--through transcendence and inclusion--of one's own native ideology.

In a similar sense that just about any religion can have "versions of worship" specific to any stage.

1/07/2007 09:01:00 AM  
Anonymous hoarhey said...

"Now the tricky thing is, people at any given stage will generally translate anything "higher" into something "lower."


Sort of like you do here?
It's not about mechanical, robotic caregories and stages but about the ability to discern truth.
Such that someone that you might consider to be a category 1 because he thinks that your machanical way of thinking is a bunch of gibberish, is actually a category 6 due to his ability to discern truth. He may not be able to articulate that truth but he certainly has a step up on you as far as his ability to recognize it.

1/07/2007 09:11:00 AM  
Anonymous Dr. Pepper said...

Bob notes that market forces (in contrast to political forces) produce a comparatively high level of honesty and functionality-- and I wonder if market forces can/should be transported into marriages and relationships so that the illusions, manipulations, and other dishonest chicanery that thrive within them can be reduced.

Should lovers cut a deal, in other words? Quid Pro Quo?

I rather think so. I invite others to opine.

Bob, magnificent work on this post. You are a national treasure.

1/07/2007 09:16:00 AM  
Anonymous Integralist is Orwell's worst nightmare said...

Go back and look at any of Integralists comments since he came here.

Then read the following passages from Orwell's "1984" about doublethink.

"Doublethink is the power of holding two contradictory beliefs in one's mind simultaneously, and accepting both of them. ... To tell deliberate lies while genuinely believing in them, to forget any fact that has become inconvenient, and then, when it becomes necessary again, to draw it back from oblivion for just so long as it is needed, to deny the existence of objective reality and all the while to take account of the reality which one denies—all this is indispensably necessary.

Even in using the word doublethink it is necessary to exercise doublethink. For by using the word one admits that one is tampering with reality; by a fresh act of doublethink one erases this knowledge; and so on indefinitely, with the lie always one leap ahead of the truth."

"His mind slid away into the labyrinthine world of doublethink. To know and not to know, to be conscious of complete truthfulness while telling carefully-constructed lies, to hold simultaneously two opinions which cancelled out, knowing them to be contradictory and believing in both of them; to use logic against logic, to repudiate morality while laying claim to it, to believe that democracy was impossible and that the Party was the guardian of democracy; to forget whatever it was necessary to forget, then to draw it back at the moment when it was needed, and then promptly to forget it again: and above all, to apply the same process to the process itself. That was the ultimate subtlety: consciously to induce unconsciousness, and then, once again, to become unconscious of the art of hypnosis you had just performed. Even to understand the world 'doublethink' involved using doublethink.

1/07/2007 09:25:00 AM  
Anonymous Interlocutor said...

Integralist:

I like your post--it is intelligent and measured, and without any rancor or other emotional taint. I think you have moved up a level, perhaps to one higher than my own. Congratualations.

BTW- I'm glad you decided to come back. I've advocated for you. Did you read that post? You have a good purpose here--never doubt it.

Now, to address your question of how people might evolve upwards from level to level:

The destruction of the level that a person inhabits is one possible catalyst for an upward movement.
The ground is literally blown up from underneath a person's feet. They must leap upward.

Suppose a level 5 man is to move to a level 6? First, God must systematically undermine and destroy his security--he must be visited by vexations, privations and losses in order to make him uncomfortable.

If I may quote:

"Suffering is the dark loam from which sprouts the beautiful flower of soul realization."

Discomfort can take many forms. Cherished ideas might be punctured on a blog site like this one, for instance. The ground gets muddier the longer you struggle--you are no longer so sure about things...

God moves people upward, I think. They aspire, and then a Hand takes hold of them, and up they go...

1/07/2007 09:31:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Interlocuter absurdly said:

"The destruction of the level that a person inhabits is one possible catalyst for an upward movement.
The ground is literally blown up from underneath a person's feet. They must leap upward."

Higher levels can only be built on a strong foundation of lower ones. To think otherwise is a metaphysical absurdity.

Go preach your bs elsewhere.

1/07/2007 09:35:00 AM  
Blogger Gagdad Bob said...

Integralist: your question about developmental stages is too simplitic for me to answer, and betrays a Wilberian bias. If they exist, they cannot be understood until they have been undergone, so stop asking about them. When you're in one, you'll know it -- or be it, more precisely. We, on the other hand, will know it by a change in your fruitiness.

1/07/2007 09:40:00 AM  
Anonymous hoarhey said...

Bob,
You said;

"Have you ever thought about the fact that there is almost always a more or less 1:1 relationship between Democrats and Republicans? How can this be? Because both parties are constantly adjusting and adapting their message to the emotional needs of the citizenry at any given time -- needs which are not rooted in reality, to say the least."


Do you think that if this country were able to produce say 300 national politicians scattered evenly throughout the country who grasped the vision of the founders and were able to articulate that vision in their own way as effectively as Ronald Reagan, that the 1 to 1 ratio might shift?
It seems that politicians these days are increasingly more nihilistic and earth bound calling it sophistication and nuance rather than inspiring the populace to something higher.

1/07/2007 09:44:00 AM  
Blogger Van said...

George Orwell said "Doublethink is the power of holding two contradictory beliefs in one's mind simultaneously, and accepting both of them. ... To tell deliberate lies while genuinely believing in them, to forget any fact that has become inconvenient, and then, when it becomes necessary again, to draw it back from oblivion for just so long as it is needed, to deny the existence of objective reality and all the while to take account of the reality which one denies—all this is indispensably necessary. "

Yep, again, to assert big 'T' and little 't' truth is to kill & gut the entire concept of Truth altogether, that being done, words are just playthings to while away the time with. Once people who believe that words are more than playthings catch on to your childish games, you become nothing but an annoyance.

integralist, your questions are meaningless, your assertions are foolish, your intent is disreputable and unclean. Why not find a nice busy street and play there. Or is that what you think you've found here? Raccoons’, lay off the horns, don't bother with the brakes, just run 'im down.

1/07/2007 09:55:00 AM  
Anonymous hoarhey said...

"The destruction of the level that a person inhabits is one possible catalyst for an upward movement.
The ground is literally blown up from underneath a person's feet. They must leap upward."

Interlocutor,

Yes, the ground is literally blown out from underneath a persons feet if they have been blind enough to let it get to this stage. But rather than a leap upward, the blindness causes a person to fall into the hole that the explosion made. This process will continue throughout a persons life until they get a clue as to what they are doing to cause the explosions. This usually entails a good hard look at oneself and ones motivations.

1/07/2007 09:58:00 AM  
Anonymous Puddleglum said...

Regarding the constant thrumming of Integralist's inane questions:

"'You see [said the witch]? When you try to think out clearly what this sun must be, you cannot tell me. You can only tell me it is like the lamp. Your sun is a dream;and there is nothing in that dream that was not copied from the lamp. The lamp is the real thing; the sun is but a tale, a children's story.'

...But Puddleglum, desperately gathering all his strength, walked over to the fire. Then he did a very brave thing. He knew it wouldn't hurt him quite as much as it would hurt a human;...but he knew it would hurt him badly enough; and so it did. With his bare foot he stamped on the fire...though the whole fire had not been put out, a good bit of it had, and what remaind smelled very largely of burnt Marsh-wiggle, which is not at all an enchanting smell. This instantly made everyone's brain far clearer. The prince and the children held up their heads again and opened their eyes.

There is nothing like a good shock of pain for dissolving certain kinds of magic.

‘One word, Ma'am. One word. All you’ve been saying is quite right, I shouldn’t wonder. I’m a chap who always liked to know the worst and then put the best face I can on it. So I won’t deny any of what you said. But there’s one thing more to be said, even so. Suppose we have only dreamed, or made up, all those things—trees and grass and sun and moon and stars and Aslan [Absolute Truth]himself. Suppose we have. Then all I can say is that, in that case, the made-up things seem a good deal more important than the real ones. Suppose this black pit of a kingdom of yours is the only world. Well, it strikes me as a pretty poor one.

…I’m on Aslan’s side even if there isn’t any Aslan to lead it. I’m going to live as like a Narnian as I can even if there isn’t any Narnia. …We’re leaving your court and setting out in the dark to spend our lives looking for Overland. Not that our lives will be very long, I should think; but that’s small loss if the world’s as dull a place as you say.’”

--The Silver Chair

1/07/2007 09:59:00 AM  
Blogger Van said...

Interlocuter said "...The ground is literally blown up from underneath a person's feet. They must leap upward."

The heart and soul of determimysticism and leftism is the quest for the hidden action that will cause the uncaused action to occur without individual effort or that most fearful phantom of all, Free Will.

Say hello to Ponce for me, for that is where you (found) will find it, in the fountain of youth and immaturity.

1/07/2007 10:07:00 AM  
Blogger Gagdad Bob said...

"Do you think that if this country were able to produce say 300 national politicians scattered evenly throughout the country who grasped the vision of the founders and were able to articulate that vision in their own way as effectively as Ronald Reagan, that the 1 to 1 ratio might shift?"

Yes, and no, for it wasn't just Reagan's truthful message, but that he was such a pleasant and genial messenger. He told hard truths which, if they come out of another mouth, do not appeal to most people.

LIke Lincoln before him, I regard Reagan as more of a nationalistic mystic who sensed the true meaning of America and was able to literally embody and transmit it in a way that both included and bypassed the intellect, going straight to the heart -- which is how he converted all those Democrats to our side. I believe that many polls showed that the majority of people were against most of his individual policies, and yet, for him. His "being" embodied truth, not just his mind.

Unlike the American left, the Soviets recognized his power right away.

1/07/2007 10:07:00 AM  
Anonymous hoarhey said...

Van,

After spending so much time and effort with integralist over on your own blog you haven't been able to discern his high moral values and commitment to truth? I'm shocked! ;)

1/07/2007 10:22:00 AM  
Blogger Van said...

Hoarhey,

Ooouuchh! That's gonna leave a mark! Fortunately I'm working from home today, so no one else is gonna see it (wife & kids are used to seeing such marks & don't take notice anymore).

Being a flogger has it's up's and down's, but still... a Racoon's gotta do what a Racoon's gotta do!

(note - tonights usb powered bow launched to the northwest may have a little extra electrical charge to it. Might give the northern lights a bit more color.)

1/07/2007 10:59:00 AM  
Anonymous walt said...

I have sensed for some time now, that the so-called "anger" and "vitriol", and even more recently-accused "hatred" that folks respond with, to trolls and purveyors of double-think, is a result of genuine fatigue: that form of "tiredness" that comes from being lied to. As Bob alluded, at some point in this life, you check the earth beneath your feet, and choose what actually works, and stand for it. After that clarity arises, double-think just grates.

1/07/2007 11:31:00 AM  
Anonymous will said...

>>I regard Reagan as more of a nationalistic mystic who sensed the true meaning of America and was able to literally embody and transmit it in a way that both included and bypassed the intellect, going straight to the heart<<

Likewise in terms of mystic embodiments,Thatcher in the UK and pope JP2.

1/07/2007 11:33:00 AM  
Anonymous Joan of Argghh1 said...

Scroll down for some great Thatcher moments, "Let Thatcher be Thatcher":

http://sharpknife.blogspot.com/

Actually, it's all good.

1/07/2007 11:42:00 AM  
Anonymous will said...

>>In religion, truth is increasingly understood and metabolized, which has the practical effect of widening and deepening our being<<

Makes me reflect on art and its "purpose". The hoary description of "art for art's sake" has a certain resonance, but I think as an all-purpose labeling, it goes nowhere, and in fact has led to the perverse garbage that we're subjected to today.

I think the "purpose" of art - art in the very ancient sense, perhaps - is to "dis-illusion" in the best sense, to enable one to see through untruth so that the deeper levels of being might unfold.

That of course would be where religion and art interface, become one. Certain forms of sacred art, eg., Gregorian chant, transcend the merely sensory/aesthetic and actually impact on the higher centers of the human organism - this is where art, religion, and science interface.

1/07/2007 12:01:00 PM  
Anonymous Jacob C. said...

Walt: I think you nailed it. Even the Man Himself had a very low bullshit tolerance (Matthew 23, Luke 6:41-42, Matthew 7:1-6)

1/07/2007 12:06:00 PM  
Anonymous will said...

Joan, thanks - I knew about that conversation between RR and maggie, but to read the actual words . . heh, gives me a frisson to behold maggie's righteousness.

1/07/2007 12:17:00 PM  
Anonymous Jimmy J. said...

Speaking of Reagan, I just received the book, "The Crusader, Ronald Reagan and the Fall of Communism." I have long been an admirer of Reagan, but this book has put me in awe of the man.

Bob said, "LIke Lincoln before him, I regard Reagan as more of a nationalistic mystic who sensed the true meaning of America...."
Just so.

1/07/2007 12:44:00 PM  
Anonymous Joan of Argghh! said...

You're most welcome. SharpKnife is such an unassuming little blog. It just sits there, reminding folks of Important Stuff.

Other quotes by Reagan are there, too. The power of remembering is so lightly regarded nowadays that finding a site that simply, "remembers" is quite a treat.

1/07/2007 12:44:00 PM  
Anonymous Integralist said...

Interlocutor, thanks for your kind words. Unfortunately I see little reason to stick around here--no matter what tone I take, I get the same nasty (and immature) response.

As you said, there was no rancor in my post--but that is all I received in kind. Not to mention that I was honestly trying to get a deeper understanding of Bob's view--which he refused on a very flimsy basis. All of which only points to the lack of self-awareness of this board as a whole. There are a few bright sparks, but they are far and few between.

I've continued posting because I've really tried to give the folks here the benefit of the doubt, that there was some inkling of openness and integral consciousness. But after this recent spell of ridiculous thrashings and a continued lack of understanding of anything I say, it is pretty hard for me to refute the conclusion that this is truly a hostile and regressive environment, a "closed system" of groupthink that is completely antagonist to ANY kind of differing views.

I mean look at "Gagdad": he won't even enter dialogue with any who approach him from a different enough perspective, yet at the same time he turns around and writes posts about them! I'm rather disappointed with Bob, especially considering he is a psychotherapist and should have more self-awareness (but of course there are doctors who smoke, and obviously supposedly moral Christians who do not follow the Golden Rule).

Or to put it another way, the emperor truly has no clothes.

1/07/2007 01:07:00 PM  
Anonymous cousin dupree said...

FINALLY you have consciously said what all of us here already knew you unconsciously believe.

It's about time. We told you you had no reason to be here.

1/07/2007 01:28:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Please, Integralist, don't come back this time.

Don't even lurk.

1/07/2007 02:09:00 PM  
Anonymous PrincessSpirit said...

One of my notoriously Narcissistic clients, after failing to manipulate me yet again for the umpteenth time, in foiled frustration yelled, "You're the G****mned Iron Lady! You're Margaret Thatcher's freakin sister!" To which I smoothly replied, "Why, Thank You! I take that as a compliment of the highest order." He just sat there glaring, arms crossed, hatin.

Now, 10 months & 175+ hours of hard therapy later, he sings a very different tune, is humble and blushes at times when we quip of when he called me GenlPatton & Iron Lady.

Thank the Lord he IS growing, due to the careful patiently laid foundation we labor weekly to construct within him.

Genuinely, I desire the day I will be able to compliment him "You're So much like Reagan!"

That will be a Great Day for us both, and we'll celebrate his Graduation into full-on sanity, Truth & Spirituality.

- PrincessSpirit -

1/07/2007 02:11:00 PM  
Anonymous will said...

. . . was thinking it was going to take a silver bullet and a stake through the heart . .

1/07/2007 02:25:00 PM  
Anonymous PrincessSpirit said...

"There's A Hole In My Sidewalk"

I. I walk down the street. Theres a deep hole in the sidewalk. I see it but I fall in. I'm helpless! I'm lost! It isn't my fault! Someone rescue me! Takes forever to find my way out. Not fair!

II. I walk down same street. Theres a deep hole n the sidewalk. I pretend I don't see it. I fall in again. Can't believe I'm in the bleepin hole again. It isn't my fault, I swear! Still takes a long time to find my way out.

III. I walk down same street. Theres a deep hole in the sidewalk. I see its there. I remember I already fell in. Somehow I still fall in again! *#@%-it! Its a habit now. My eyes are open. I know where I am. It really IS my fault. I struggle to climb out.

IV. I walk down same street. Theres a big hole in the sidewalk. I walk around it.

V. I'm about to take the same street. Instead, I Choose another street to walk down.

-Claudia Black

- PrincessSpirit -

1/07/2007 02:28:00 PM  
Anonymous PrincessSpirit said...

The Dwarf accused the Emperor of having no clothes. But the Dwarf has no Eyes with which to see Truth. How can he accuse the Emperor when the Dwarf is blind and refuses to See?

Lies accuse Truth, not the other way around. Truth stands alone and refutes all Lies. And Dwarves.

"But the dwarves are for the dwarves."
-CS Lewis.

- PrincessSpirit -
(LOL Will! Was wondering same thing!)

1/07/2007 02:41:00 PM  
Anonymous hoarhey said...

Walt,

When a person has tried to help and explain with EXACTING language, and has eventually seen through the BS doubletalk, insincerity, bloviating to sound intelligent, and egotistical, holier than thou posturing, what's left but mockery?
The BS probably works to some advantage in circles of shallow pontification but it ain't flyin' here. Too many cold trailin' coondogs to get away with it.

P.S.
Integralist, we understand you all too well and are unwilling to cram consciousness into your limited, categorical world.
Once again, this post was all about you only this time Bob left out your name. (Thanks Bob, for that I am forever grateful). Some people are just too thick to get it. Sadly, the truth shows up backwards looking through your mirror, everything you see is you.

P.P.S.
Like the trolls of old, he ain't goin' nowhere.

1/07/2007 02:50:00 PM  
Anonymous hoarhey said...

"I mean look at "Gagdad": he won't even enter dialogue with any who approach him from a different enough perspective, yet at the same time he turns around and writes posts about them! "

Why would any sane person attempt to teach integral calculus to a kindergartener?

1/07/2007 02:56:00 PM  
Anonymous Dick Clark said...

As swan songs go, it's got a nice beat, and you can dance to it. I give it a 10!

1/07/2007 03:05:00 PM  
Anonymous hoarhey said...

You are gravely mistaken as to your level of development.

1/07/2007 03:06:00 PM  
Anonymous PrincessSpirit said...

G-BOB: Very detailed and wonderful post today. Another absolute gem for my personal archive. It strengthens me. Can't thank you enough, Fearless Leader! :D

HOARHEY said: "This process will continue throughout a person's life until they get a clue as to what they are doing to cause the explosions. This usually entails a good hard look at oneself and ones motivation."

It's called Recovery. Therapy. Marriage Therapy. Recovery-from-Divorce Therapy. Sanity. Truth. Spirituality. Integralism.

Also Anon: "Higher levels can only be built on a strong foundation of lower ones." Amen!

Hoarhey, you definitely ate your fortified Wheaties this morning! I so treasure your uncommon "common sense!" :D

Ok, back to work with dwarves and others now. I am Refreshed, Renewed. Ready. Thanks all for Blessing me!

- PrincessSpirit -

1/07/2007 03:06:00 PM  
Anonymous Dick Clark's smarter little bro said...

It is an AMAZING swan song. It's got it all: sniffly umbrage, a long-awaited telling of his real opinion, a Nixonesque sense of being misunderstood, and a made-up friend with whom to commismerate.

The only lowpoint: he sings according to the "spots". No imaginative obligatos or scats, just a rote execution of the expected notes. Still, it's everything I want in a Swan Song.

Gonna miss the old boy. You know, in that weird way that you miss the hiccups when they finally go away...

1/07/2007 03:18:00 PM  
Blogger Lisa said...

I just happen to drive around the parking lot of the Reagan Library today. It is very beautiful. Unfortunately, I did not get to go inside because the mission was putting a 2 1/2 year old to sleep for a nap. It worked! The views are stunning looking into the Conejo Valley. Standing on a high point on the earth looking into whatever landscape always seems to deepen the connection with God.

1/07/2007 03:55:00 PM  
Anonymous Uncle Carbunkle said...

Further comments on the "rule" of Beavis Butthead.
If you read the "news" you will see that there are terrible events "in the works" everywhere on earth--including the pandemic of negative global competitiveness, dissociative warrior-nationalisms,the "sport" of strategic war-making, the everywhere aggressive search for global dominance by corporations and traditional institutions, and all the over-whelming changes now progressing in the natural domain, including global warming and climate change, the global epidemics of disease and poverty, the global depletion of natural resources, the global pervasiveness of toxic wastes, the global dependence on archaic practical and political and social and human-resource technologies and methods, and so on, and on.

The humankind-culture of this time is the global drama of dis-united nations--or the competitive nations of the world. Such is a kind of absurd gladiatorial contest.

When prior DIS-unity is presumed, everybody has a false face and is playing a faker's role, everybody is wearing a deceiptful costume, everybody is getting their "15 minutes of fame" on TV, by playing on the latest possibility of the "daily news".

All of that "TV of Narcissus" is utterly obnoxious and PASSE---and the signs in the world all prove it is far too late in the human course for humankind to be going on with that nonsense anymore. All of that must simply MUST stop.

The national and institutional and otherwise corporate leaderships all over the world are, at this present time, merely playing on the "objectified"-self-"culture" of "Everyman", and playing off one another like adolescent goons--as if the world is all a meaningless game of gross consumption and excessive waste, and as if it is all made especially for THEIR own glamour to be seen, and made "Narcissistic object" of all eyes.
To play such absurd games with the human and natural world is, now and forever hereafter, simply not acceptable. Time is up. Such nonsense must be given no more space and time.

1/07/2007 04:01:00 PM  
Anonymous uss ben said...

Uncle Carbuncle-
Lighten up Unc.
It can be depressing to focus too much on all the evil in the world.

It's healthy to also focus on the good that is in the world, and of course beyond, through truth.

Otherwise despair sets in, and you can make no difference when you are bogged down in despair.

1/07/2007 04:15:00 PM  
Anonymous whom do you serve? said...

Inty's back! (over on the Dodging Dupree's question post) and trying to make points again. I'll do him a final favor and ignore him.

1/07/2007 04:27:00 PM  
Anonymous Dick Clark said...

Of course we'll miss Integralist.

I'm moved to recite a pome meself, a little ditty from Lynyrd Cohynrd--

For Inty.

Now that you're gone,
Whose arse to roast so we can feel holy?

Not that we felt all that holy,

But we do, now that you're gone.



Stay gone, inty. You really don't belong here.
Did I say that with enough compassion for you?

1/07/2007 04:42:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Whom do you serve, now being served:

Then why did you even post? Looks like you got kicked around a bit. How does it feel to be on the receiving end?

1/07/2007 04:47:00 PM  
Anonymous will said...

Lisa - let me get this straight. . . when it's time for your 2 & 1/2 year old to take a nap, you put him/her in a car and drive around the parking lot of the Reagan Library?

1/07/2007 05:15:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Inty, you mentally inept Gila monster you..

1/07/2007 05:24:00 PM  
Blogger dicentra63 said...

I'm going to go out on a limb and share a sermon I heard about the rigors of discipleship. Please don't freak out if you happen to hate this man's church, just evaluate the content for what it's worth.

It explains in rather graphic detail why it is that more people don't seek out and adhere to the Truth: the price is, when all is said and done, everything.

The Bitter Cup and the Bloody Baptism

1/07/2007 05:41:00 PM  
Anonymous Uncle Carbunkle said...

USS Ben.

Why do you necessarily presume that I am being depressing?
And that I am communicating the politics of despair?
You have no idea whatsoever re who I am or of my sources for writing such "depressing" comments.

I think that everybody who contributes to this blog would agree that the body politic is stressed and fractured. And that something needs to be done both individually and collectively to change things.

The necessary key to real change (both individual & collective) is to be radically honest about where we are really at. To really see the on the ground Truth of our current "concrete" situation.
The content and context of the "daily news"!

The title of Bob's post is Truth and How to Avoid it.

Perhaps my last 2 posts have been a very clear eyed statement re the TRUTH of the current state of the collective world body politic. And of the necessary steps that need to be taken to righten the world body politic!

1/07/2007 06:12:00 PM  
Anonymous truth in hand worth two in bush said...

Orwell's worst nightmare:

You have uncovered the fact that Integralist is actually a code name for the ENTIRE Bush Administration!

Astute. AND True.

1/07/2007 06:24:00 PM  
Blogger GeorgeD said...

Thank you DiCentra

1/07/2007 06:31:00 PM  
Anonymous coondog said...

Dude,
Why get your 14 year old nephew involved?

1/07/2007 06:35:00 PM  
Blogger Lisa said...

Will- Heh, I love the irony of the whole thing too! I was in that part of the valley with my best friend and her daughter. I have known this woman since 4th grade and we went to camp together for many years. She is a complete lefty who works for the social security office. Her sister married a Republican and they named their daughter Reagan! Their initial shock and horror of the whole situation was beyond hilarious. I love her and her family dearly. We can really not discuss anything remotely close to politics. We both put it aside and enjoy our friendship. But sometimes I just have to snicker to myself when silly inconsistent leftist line of thinking is actually (not)put into reality. They only buy organic and recycle but do drive around to get her daughter to sleep! I don't have any kids except for my chihuahua Pinky so I keep my mouth shut. I can imagine it is beyond trying at times. She is a lovely child so they must be doing something right!

1/07/2007 06:47:00 PM  
Anonymous whom do you serve? said...

Watson,

Anonymous the Donkey insists being the Horse's Arse as well by trying to imitate my own inimitable style. Cheeky fellow! Suggest he get one of his own instead of being dodgy, nicking others personaes, which he did rather poorly today, if I do say so myself. Apparently, the git serves "no one" as he only imitates others. Pity the pillock, we say.

Such a strange, insufferable disagreeable little man is this "dwarf gila monster" named Integralist, who posts as anonymous, windblown and so forth. I fear we shan't be rid of him so easily. The fellow is obviously quite barmy and daft. Cracked in the head, as Americans say. Fruitloops. Yes. Quite.

Sincerest condolences to my American friends. Chin up, Yanks! He'll eventually bugger off. All roaches do when the environment turns inhospitable.

-Whom Do You Serve?
aka Sherlock

1/07/2007 06:55:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Whom/Sherlock:

Go on back over to your previous posts and reap the fruit of your "inimitable style"! Funny stuff!

1/07/2007 07:03:00 PM  
Blogger NoMo said...

Integralist - So, you just keep coming 'round because you like to see the emporer naked?

1/07/2007 07:14:00 PM  
Anonymous whom do you serve? said...

A thoroughly grotty ole chap, isn't he?

-Whom Do You Serve?
aka Sherlock

1/07/2007 07:26:00 PM  
Anonymous hoarhey said...

The naked emperor fetish has become the new obsession - uhh, I mean integration.
It's all good!

1/07/2007 08:06:00 PM  
Blogger Lisa said...

As long as the emporer is hot, I guess it's OK with me!

1/07/2007 08:17:00 PM  
Blogger USS Ben USN (Ret) said...

What happens in the One Cosmos stays in the One Cosmos.

1/07/2007 08:43:00 PM  
Blogger ximeze said...

Told Beaky the news & she feels compelled to say:

AAAHRRRUUUUUUUP!!!

1/07/2007 09:00:00 PM  
Anonymous interlocutor said...

Integralist:

I feel your pain. Nevertheless, this post and its abusive denizens are the field of my work; I cannot turn away so easily.

The invectives are just words--others have had to absorb punches or even bullets. We can hang, and don't you dare try to tell me otherwise.

This type of work demands a thick skin and a resilient (or absent) ego.

Now, Integralist, a new campaign?

I reintroduce a point I made earlier built upon your question about levels of spirituality, and how an upward ascent is made.

I opined that a climb from one level from the next often involves pain and the destruction of the place where one came from before. That is not to say one doesn't remember where one has been, but it is nevertheless untenable to return to.

Think about death-row conversions, 12-step programs, etc. These are fertile ground for upward spirituality, because these are places where the desparate and the crushed are found.

The raccoons hooted at my idea on the first round, but I'll wager there's not a man-jack (or jill) upon them who hasn't felt the weight of God's bootheel on them at one time or another. Eh, my pretties?

They'll hoot again, but they will have just a brief flash of recognition in my words. There it is; that's the work.

This is how God moves people up sometimes; he destroys their complacency and their comfort, and they must leave their burrows and move.

'tis the truth.

1/07/2007 09:00:00 PM  
Anonymous coondog said...

"Think about death-row conversions, 12-step programs, etc. These are fertile ground for upward spirituality, because these are places where the desparate and the crushed are found."

Been there, done that, now were trying to help God crush your dumb asses. :)

1/07/2007 09:20:00 PM  
Blogger NoMo said...

interlocgralist - God doesn't wear boots, and if you could see some of us, I doubt you'd call us pretty --at least on the outside. The inside, you have little knowledge of -- nor your own I'll wager. What is it exactly you are after, little gollum? Its the light that attracts, is it not? The shimmer from the ring of Truth. You bend to it against your will, don't you. You want to leave for darker places, but your soul cries out for just a glimmer. Let your heart lead you on. Truth, lies, Truth, lies, its therein the Truth lies.

1/07/2007 09:27:00 PM  
Anonymous interlocutor said...

Now to drive the wedge in a little further:
Huge amounts of pain are needed to get people up the first few rungs of the ladder.

Higher up, like where these raccons are, the mechanism is subtler.

God tends to give them the carrot rather than the stick. They try something new, and they are rewarded by feeling a whiff of the ineffable, the magnificent, the arcane. So then they try something else new. Meditate, read various things, walk in nature.

Or, more usually, they give something up. One desire that is conquered brings more bliss than a thousand desires satiated.

The raccoons know exactly what I'm talking about.

These 'coons are experimenting, there's no doubt about it. They are evolving.

But that's enough for tonight; I look forward to more acion on the morrow.

1/07/2007 09:33:00 PM  
Anonymous bandit said...

We don't go to your websites or blogs as you don't have anything we coons want. We don't hang with skunks.

1/07/2007 09:42:00 PM  
Anonymous coondog said...

And I'm hot on them coons heels, headin' up.

1/07/2007 09:47:00 PM  
Anonymous GLASR said...

Well, uh, um, yes, the pencils that came with the scorecards DID have erasers. Honestly, I DID NOT touch my card with the eraser. Really. Truth be told. No kidding. Seriously. Lead part only.

1/07/2007 10:03:00 PM  
Anonymous Integralist said...

Well interlocutor, I'll leave you to the nursery...good luck!

p.s. Nice point about the "brief flash of recognition"--that is what I hope to offer AND find, that sweet scent of the leading edge of evolutionary awareness just beyond the bounds of the Known.

Who knows, I may be back--in this guise or another. It might be fun to pretend I'm a raccoon, get everyone to like me, and then pull the carpet out from under them...

Or would that just be cruel? ;)

1/07/2007 11:31:00 PM  
Anonymous bubba said...

No matter who you pretend to be, you'll still be who you are. You will be known by your fruitiness.

When you no longer pretend, understanding becomes possible.

1/08/2007 01:11:00 AM  
Anonymous will said...

interlocutor -

>>I opined that a climb from one level from the next often involves pain and the destruction of the place where one came from before . . . The raccoons hooted at my idea on the first round<<

Who here hooted at this idea? I've been hanging in OC for a while now, and the concept of the Dark Night, of the scourging spiritual Initiation process, is virtually a given here, in fact, it's spirituality 101 stuff, has been referenced many times here.

Anyway, I take it that you believe Inty (and yourself) to be pain-inducing spiritual catalysts that we refuse to accept cuz we just can't stand to have our narrow little paradigm overturned.

Actually, Inty did play his spiritual role in OC in the following manner: Gurdjieff used to hire a series of guys with an array of really really annoying habits and mannerisms just to hang with his students. The Annoying Guys shared the habit of always presenting meaningless challenges and questions, of never knowing when to gracefully fade away, of never being able to comprehend the program but always insisting that they did, of always popping up where they weren't wanted or needed and pontificating away endlessly, etc.

Gurdjieff's purpose in hiring these bozos was obvious - it was to test, to deepen his students forbearance, their spiritual sangfroid.

No, I don't think Bob hired Inty, heh. Maybe God did, who knows? But as far as Inty's role as "spiritual catalyst" - no. He's only the Really Annoying Guy.

And here's a scoop for you, Inter - the higher on the path, the more severe, not less severe, the testing involved in the initiation process.

1/08/2007 02:52:00 AM  
Blogger USS Ben USN (Ret) said...

Amen to that Will!
If it gets easier, that only means they are going downhill, to put it in a material way they understand.

1/08/2007 03:01:00 AM  
Anonymous if this is right, I must be left said...

To summarize:
This crowd, for the most part, reminds me of a bunch of Larson's cows staring at a book.

"What is it?"
"Dunno. On the top it says "The Truth".
"Yeah. I tried it."
"And?"
"It doesn't taste like grass."
"Hey girls, here comes the dumb human to give us more food!"
"Ha Ha Ha! He sure is stoopid. But you ClaraBell, you are so funny, you are amooosing!"
"Ha Ha! Jenny called ClaraBell amooosing! Ooops! I laughed so hard I pooped!"
"Hey. Will someone Mooove "The Truth"? It's blocking the grass.


One desire conquered brings more bliss than a thousand desires satiated." Someone's learned to read...


Bob, Van, Hoarhey, Lisa, Thanks for the lessons. It has been a good time since I signed on back when. May your future bring all you Bobbleheads that which you seek. It's a new year. Yesterday was the first Sunday, and my Teacher officially took you off my "required reading" list.

I feel sadness leaving, as I have become familiar with so many of your projections. True, or not. Honest, or not. Essential, or not.

Sign me "if this is right, I must be left." (No. I never was inty.) Namaste, and a very good bye.

1/08/2007 03:42:00 AM  
Blogger River Cocytus said...

Resist the devil, and he will flee from you.

9 words to live by.

I love the accusation, which is often leveled, trying to abuse the Golden Rule against those who follow it. You're basically saying, "If you are so moral, then you have to accept my lies!"

Lies are always lies. They can not be transformed into truth by some form of mental gymnastics.

To put it to you this way, there is no 'Absolute' and 'Relative' Truth. Because Truth === Reality. What you are actually saying, without directly saying it is, there are absolute and relative Realities.

All that really does is elevate perspectives to the level of realities, which they are not.

Also, if you're going to 'plot to befriend us' it would be better to do so... in private? Or is tact entirely lost on you?

As for 'lovers cutting a deal' it does not work. The world of the family, which is what lovers begin, does not operate on the principles of the free market. The world of the market and labor does. To understand why this is, one has to consider the difference in the goals, number of people involved, relationships between those people, etc.

Rules that work well in one situation are rendered useless in the other.

Comparing Bush's religion to bin Laden's is simple:

One is an Islamic maniac, the other is a born-again Christian.

as for their internal relationship with God, nobody knows it but they and God.

It is easy to know the 'horizontal' component of someone's religion (although horizontal people are decidedly ignorant of even this) but the vertical part, one must know the other's heart a bit to understand it.

Integralist, as long as you deny the Christ, I feel no sympathy for you. Here is a good rule:

"The person who will not be helped shall not be cared for."

Just as there is an unforgivable sin. Did you know this? Yes, there is a sin which is Unto Death.

What it is? It is self-evident.

Good morning, Americoons!

1/08/2007 05:02:00 AM  
Anonymous Sal said...

walt said:
"that form of "tiredness" that comes from being lied to."

I call that "Da Vinci Code tired".

1/08/2007 05:50:00 AM  
Anonymous the village idgit said said...

Interlocutor, the village idgit said, "a resilient (or absent ego)"...An absent ego makes one a serial killer. An absent brain makes one an idgit. Blessed with both, I see.

"Eh, pretties?" you wrote reveals the possessive jealous wicked witch in you exposes your evil desire to conquer us.

Green skinned cackling wicked witch serial killer wants to dominate Oz with his flying monkey and foul dogma. Mad at God, are you? Or just Mad?

1/08/2007 06:39:00 AM  
Blogger Lisa said...

Oh Nags!!! You know you can't leave now and just because you changed your name, we still know it's you!!! I am not quite sure why I should be thanked but well no problem! This site is like a Lay's Potato Chip, you know you can't eat just one.

I have a strange feeling this will not be your last goodbye! ;0) MOOOO!

1/08/2007 08:06:00 AM  
Anonymous w.v. said...

UnMan's still here?

Ransom had to apply the Rock to the head routine to quiet UnMan down in the end. He's not smart enough to realize he's on the losing side despite all the pummeling. Agent Smith dogged Neo repeatedly even after Neo learned to fly. It just replicates itself, as if might makes right. History tells a different tale. A virus is a virus is a virus. It doesn't change, just clones and stalks, seeks to infect. Still a microparasitic life form whatever form it shows up in.

"Now blow this thing out the Airlock!" said Roslyn.

w.v.

1/08/2007 08:41:00 AM  
Anonymous hoarhey said...

"Yesterday was the first Sunday, and my Teacher officially took you off my "required reading" list."

Maybe time for a newer/smarter teacher?
Lisa, I think you may be right but namaste boy has left here many times.
Like all the trolls of old, he ain't goin' nowhere.

1/08/2007 09:36:00 AM  
Blogger Lisa said...

I have to say that Nags has been my favorite troll so far. He has actually made me laugh in some responses. Most trolls just make me sigh and feel pity for about a half a second. Then I move on and be grateful I am no longer in that stage!!

I think Bob should dedicate a post to our favorite trolls thoughout OC History and we could vote on who is the best one! That would be fun. We could then scientifically analyze the poll and come to many meaningful conclusions just like the MSM does! :0)

1/08/2007 09:55:00 AM  
Blogger Van said...

integralist said "It might be fun to pretend I'm a raccoon, get everyone to like me, and then pull the carpet out from under them...Or would that just be cruel?"

Nah, just as consistently honest as straightforward as you've always been.

1/08/2007 04:25:00 PM  
Blogger Van said...

pasta namaste

1/08/2007 04:25:00 PM  
Anonymous hoarhey said...

Lisa,

The three thickest skulled trolls who have visited during my time here would have to be Nags, Dig Dug (remember him?) and Integralist. Not necessarily in that order. Those three caught on to absolutely nothing during their time here. The rest have been easily swatted away like mosquitoes.

1/08/2007 05:53:00 PM  
Blogger Van said...

River Cocytus said... A slight quibble with your comment "Resist the devil, and he will flee from you.".

Though true, resisting, pushing away, involves maintaining contact - which afterall is his goal.

Dismiss him with higher thoughts (turn the other cheek perhaps?), and you are free of him.

Perhaps a bit treacle-y, but there's something there. Especially for a flogger like me.

1/08/2007 06:54:00 PM  
Blogger Lisa said...

Hoarhey,

I couldn't agree more with you! Someone should find the best quote from each troll and we could vote on the all time best troll comment! You do have some official title in OC, do you think you can organize this? It could be an annual event!

1/08/2007 07:29:00 PM  
Anonymous hoarhey said...

Lisa,

Unfortunately the search function on this blog retricts itself to Bob's posts and so it is difficult to find certain Troll quotes. Believe me I've tried. (try wading through even one week of psychoprincess posts to locate troll quotes and you'll see what I mean) There is just too much text to deal with especially since the responses have topped 100.
If such a competition were begun we'd almost have to have a start date and then each person could save their favorite to trot out at the competition.
Hmmm, Emcee and organizer of the Thickest Skulled Troll Competition just might secure you a position on the Gagdad walk of fame.
I can see it now;

Lisa said:

Now don't forget this years troll competition people. Lots of material to work with today. ;)

1/09/2007 07:54:00 PM  

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