Tuesday, November 27, 2012



 We are in an information age that trumps experience. Watching Television (which I call the "pseudo-life machine" because the amygdala and limbric sections of the brain contain no negatives) gives the organism the same sense as if it was living the experience. Therefore, we must exclude much of what we call experience to the realm of the phantasmagoria, as well as reading books especially of fiction, which suffice for the ordinary person as a substitute for actually facing their own life and 'living it'.

Conscious Influence C can only come from direct contact with "one who knows", and must be a direct transmission. Otherwise it becomes influence B (like the exoteric outer trappings of religions) or A (the ordinary 'world and all it would seem to contain) --  where it is said that the "gods are asleep", as in the Kundabuffer, which is the opposite of the Kundalini, according to Gurdjieff's vernacular. 

But let me take Christianity as an example; during the first three centuries (334 YEARS), one had to keep the fact that they were Christian a secret or face a fierce demand to also acknowledge the Emperor as a deity. Failing that could lead to death, period. So the Christians met in the underground catacombs or at each others houses at great bodily risk.

 Now let's move to Mr. Gurdjieff during the second world war. Paris was under strict curfew by the Nazis, and going to visit Mr. Gurdjieff in the evening for the dinners and meetings carried with it the risk of being shot on sight. So the Work enters the world at great peril of turning into it's opposite, as the Enneagram has done, having been turned into a kind of "astrology of types".

 But the real work remains, as in the Lord's Prayer, which starts with these words, (from the Aramaic): "Father/Mother/Breather of ALL, ye ARE Heaven; may your "Name" be kept protected, secret and sacred." Now, who does the Lord's name be protected from and kept secret and sacred? US: You and Me! Otherwise it becomes degraded and becomes influence B and ultimately A. So the question in this information age is "how do we protect the work from ourselves?"

 In the book "Our Life With Mr. Gurdjieff" by the De Hartmann's, there is an interesting passage: Gurdjieff tells his students (and I paraphrase, not having the book in front of me): "I could lift you to Heaven, but you could not stay there; I could raise you to 100 degrees Celsius (boiling point of water which involves a change of state and greater freedom - water vapor is not under the laws that govern liquid water), but you would return to your ordinary state: YOU must learn to raise your own temperature to 100 degrees Celsius". What this implies is that we must undertake INTENTIONAL SUFFERING (Not "Voluntary Suffering", which is another thing altogether) we must OURSELVES create the friction within ourselves to initiate a permanent change of state, which only change of state can place us under higher laws. Ice, Water, Vapor, Plasma. THESE are the equivalent states that we find ourselves in. Opaque, Translucent, Transparent and finally Radiant. But WHO has the WILL power required to place oneself under such intentional pressure? Practically NOBODY. THIS is the reason why one must make direct contact with "One Who Knows", or barring that (we can't ALL have the highest teacher -- we would implode, explode or be burned to a crisp), we must make contact with a group containing SOME who know more than we do, which is at the beginning (and in some cases forever) absolutely essential, because we do not know what a man of higher being even looks like. Gurdjieff told Ouspensky that a conscious man might even look "more mechanical" than the average Joe. We cannot know the being of others before developing higher being bodies in ourselves, which require actual "changes of state", as modern science would put it.

Thursday, March 15, 2012

Of Late

Of late I have been feeling a great weight upon me, to increase my efforts towards the aim of the work and the payment of my own debt for the life that travels through me, having been given me unbidden and yet which by grace, mercy and justice, demands a payment.

This payment can be extracted through accident, illness and ultimately death of the physical body. These sufferings cannot be avoided–and when Great Nature fails to have a quality of work from a certain number of men (when I use the term and I include woman- as man in this terminology means mankind), then She is required to derive these necessary sufferings from quantity, wars, genocides and pestilences.

One might look on these sufferings as mechanical demands or taxes which cannot be avoided. If one does not pay once taxes, one accrues penalties and interest. In just the same manner, if a man pays his taxes voluntarily he can alleviate much of the useless suffering he otherwise accrues in trying to cheat. This in no way implies that a man should pay more than his fair share, but if one is sad or angry one should realize that these are his own energies turned either inward or outward. And of 7 billion people, how many are feeling the same emotions at the same time?

So one may say that Great Nature requires for mankind a certain pound weight of sadness or of anger. One cannot suppress these emotions without turning them into poisons, so, what is to be done?

A man may feel sadness at the same time that he is glad to be paying his fair share of sadness or grief to the general machinery of the cosmos. This is not a non sequitur. A man who feels anger is also among so many equally angry people that if he were to drop his anger or be angry gladly, Great Nature would hardly notice the difference. So in the general framework, one man may escape what the mass of men cannot. But how could one do this–how could one accomplish this and attain to greater degrees of freedom. One must 1st of all learn how to suffer so that that which befalls man involuntarily he accepts  voluntarily, while he studies himself and his untoward manifestations against his brethren–all the rest of humanity.

Then what might come next? Let's take the case of a man who gets angry at his employer, but has to maintain a dignified approach because if he shows anger towards his  employer he will lose his job. Such a man will probably get angry at those who he perceives as those who love him, in other words, those closest to him–his spouse and his children, or his friends. They decide that he is an angry man–prone to anger without cause, not realizing that his anger is simply misplaced and he allows for it to be expressed in what he thinks are safe directions.

Such a man paints a pitiful figure. Going through life affected by every little prod or barrier to his desires for pleasure and a life of ease.  He may wish to change towards what he thinks is a better person, but as he does not know himself in fact but only in his imagined self, he has no inkling of how to go about it, and thus suffers from what Mr. Gurdjieff calls “The Disease of Tomorrow".  He thinks that he can change tomorrow, not realizing that today is tomorrow's yesterday and yesterday is today's tomorrow.

Such a man lives almost entirely according to his animal nature–its instincts, desires and aversions, and I can paint a picture of the disunity of such a man by stating that the man who sets the alarm clock is not the same man who has to wake up to it.

This is the state of mankind at the moment, and is a sad commentary on the workings of the world which we destroyed by seeking pleasure at the cost of suffering correctly. Only great men have found out that the way to bliss is through suffering itself, and the way to heaven requires a descent into hell, as represented by our own unconscious and subconscious drives and urges.

Read slowly. Ponder carefully. Be thankful for every new breath, because it brings with it a new opportunity.

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Money Is a Game

First of all I should tell you what I think of money: it is meaningless. It either has intrinsic value or is an IOU on a paper napkin. Why do you think that people with a lot of money buy art? Because art has more intrinsic value than does a $100 bill, due to scarcity.

Let's trace the history of money a little bit. Before 15,000 years ago, we lived in tribes as hunter gatherers which meant that either we trapped or sought out animals to either kill and eat or allow them to mate inside confines that we would create and eventually turned into what is called domestication. At that time everything was simple barter. If you had something that somebody else needed and they has something that you needed, between the two of you, you worked out relative value, so that perhaps a flint and stone with which to make fire would pretty well be worth learning the secrets of making a compass, by finding a lodestone and chipping off a tiny sliver and floating it upon the cunumbulous of water, a secret that allowed the Chinese to develop seagoing ocean vessels far before the Europeans did.

But somewhere between 15 and 12,000 years ago men began to learn the art of agriculture in earnest. This meant that he had to stay with his plants throughout the year or at least the growing season, and he had to figure out a way to store the extra grain, which the tribe was counting on to get them through tough times and winters. It also meant that locations which had the greatest primary value in terms of freshwater, good soil, animal abundance and plant abundance became places of commerce. Plus, property itself started to sort itself into layers of value. But, back to grain storage. From about 12,000 years ago  until about 9000 years ago, most of the world seem to use something called cowries, which were crafted seashells, and were deemed to have different values depending on size and the craftwork that went into them.

Between 15 and 12,000 years ago, agriculture began to take off in a big way. Of course we think this is good, because it caused communities to stabilize and to have adequate food supplies for tough times. But grain requires storage, and grain storage creates wealth. At this period of time "cowrie" shells were used as instruments of value, and incidence of these instruments of value can be found worldwide. As we domesticated the animals a funny thing happened about 10,000 years ago. It is called the Holocaust, which translates as “burnt offering.” Here's how it came about:

As a child you probably had chickenpox. Where do you think chickenpox comes from, bananas? No. Obviously chickenpox is a disease that once confined itself to chickens and somewhere along the line made the leap into humans. first, an animal would get sick, and this would spread throughout the herd. Somebody who was very clever and sly took notice of this and as soon as he saw a sick animal he would separate it from the herd and throw it on a bonfire. If you get results, which clearly they did, all the sick animals would be thrown on the “Holocaust”, saving many human beings from the hazards of these diseases. Pigs were another example: they often contain almost invisible worms called trichinosis, and if the meat were not cooked thoroughly, the human beings would come down with trichinosis–not a pretty sight, so let's look up at the chain of command. There are probably heads of households, there is likely to be a tribal chief, but the buck stops somewhere and laws and taboos aren't going to get very far if they come from somebody I know– thus the necessity of the creation of deities–gods, and there were plenty of gods for every occasion.  Gods for success in war, a good harvest, healthy children, good luck, plenty of food, and every other thing you can possibly imagine.

Now let's say you had sold the riddle of illness, that is to say that you had figured out that if you burned a sick animal you probably saved your village a great deal of distress, and  if you forbid the eating of something, you can also save lives. So what's our best approach to say that I thought it up is to end up with a lot of people laughing at you, but going up the mountain, which were considered portals to heaven,  you could come back with some pretty hefty rules that people would follow. So man created God in something of his own image–that is to say, anthropomorphically similar but with far greater powers than anyone of us.

In our quest for the domestication of animals the largest were bulls and cows, which became instruments of value at around 9,000 BCE. A good healthy cow which could give milk and meat, or a virile Bull is worth an awful lot of sea shells, and worth a good healthy portion of salt,  which has a distinct value of its own–not only necessary nutritionally but excellent for preserving meats for long periods of time. So animals became mediums of exchange, for several thousands of years–long enough for the cow to become sacred in India,  the pig to become taboo in the Middle East, and so on and so on.

This lasted until somebody thought of making coins, eventually out of what are called the precious metals, silver and gold– but,  silver might tarnish with gold is very stable.  Throw a bar of gold in the ocean and hundreds or thousands of years later it will be exactly the same bar of gold.  So gold coins became the medium of exchange because they were easier to carry around than cattle.  Paper money didn't really come into existence until several hundred years ago, with the invention or rediscovery of the printing press.  Now here are some interesting historical facts:

We're going to look at the Crusades, which cost a lot of money to fund, so they simply raised
taxes. It is easier to  demand money from people who already have it  then to demand work instead of money. The Crusades almost broke England' and other nations banks, then called treasuries. Now what happens when you need more money than you actually have?  And this is where we begin to see our problem. Countries themselves started borrowing money to fund their wars.

This is where things get tricky, so please bear with me. Usury is the word for unfair interest.
In the Middle Ages,  Christians could not lend to other Christians at interest, so if I lent you 100 "Thalers" Father of the word Dollar), or "Crowns", when you paid me back it was still 100 and we were even. Muslims were not allowed to lend at interest either, and lend only to other Muslims. The Jewish were forbidden to lend to other Jews at interest, but they COULD lend to other peoples (Gentiles, Goyim) at interest. That's where this whole shit-storm got started.

You might be able to borrow from your friends, but they trusted you and if it was for War, who knows if they would ever see their money again. Sooner or later you had to go to the Jewish Bankers, who were the loansharks of the day. They might loan you $100 but they expected $110 back, or they came and took away your livestock and your land. Soon the Christians caved and started allowed loaning at interest and EVERYBODY GOT STUCK in spirals of debt, except that the Jews had a head start. One of the smartest guys changed his name to Rothchild (which means "red shield") and soon became the richest guy in the neighborhood of the entire world.

And Rothchild built a kingdom out of money itself. And he became Europe's first real slumlord. BINGO - Anti-semitism (lots of my friends have been Jewish down to the bone marrow).


But here is where the trickery exists, the sly man's method of fleecing the sheep: HE LOANED TO BOTH SIDES OF WARS, knowing that one side would win and pay him back with the interest, and the losing side would owe him money they didn't have; in other words, they would default, and he could legally take their land and whatever valuables they had, after the winning army looted, pillaged and raped all they could.

Monday, January 2, 2012

Solasishock: Degrees of Freedom = Money

Solasishock: Degrees of Freedom = Money

Degrees of Freedom = Money

Well,  here it is, 2012, the year where everything ends on 12/21. Well we better get ready, because anything that ends postulates something beginning, and I think it's beginning now. I know I was born in what I thought was America, but lately I  have begun to think that I live in Amerika,  with a spiraling down of personal freedoms as the famous saying goes, “the rich get richer and the poor get poorer.”

The only problem with that scenario is the ratio between the rich and the poor, and how you define each of those terms. Personally, I don't enter thoughts of UFOs or Mayan calendars, except in the sense that the Mayans get to celebrate New Year's early.

I suggest that the term rich and poor have to do with degrees of freedom. America is said to be the land of the free and the home of the brave, but by percentage, less and less of us have less and less freedom. Most of us are counting our pennies while the rich count their millions. I don't care much for things, because anything I own also owns me–otherwise why would I go searching for it when I can't find it? I am then it's servant, it's slave–for as long as it takes for me to either find it were to declare it lost.

The term “degrees of freedom” is a term from physics having to do with symmetry, with the symmetry of the sphere being greatest, because no matter how you roll it, it looks the same. Not so with a rectangle, in a square you would have 90° of symmetry or 6 different positions which would look the same. With a rectangle if you have a strange grouping where one group of symmetry are the 4 ways you could turn it, and 2 additional but completely different degrees of freedom when you stand it on its end.

What has that got to do with me, you will probably ask? Well, although money has no intrinsic value of its own (it used to be tied to the gold standard and the silver standard but now it is tied to nothing), still has as much value as you pretend it does (or society at large). We will be talking about the Federal Reserve later, but right now we just want to associate money with degrees of freedom. If you are homeless and are begging for change you have almost no degrees of freedom–you must do the same thing day after day with no respite. With more money you may rent an apartment–with more you can buy a house etc.

The rich can go skiing and live their lives on vacation. If they have enough money they can play at it–the money game. When I used to tour through Europe it drove me crazy because every time we crossed a border we had to change our money into a different currency, and the money changers always charged you to exchange currencies. This of course, depletes in a small amount your degrees of freedom and establishes borders. If I can use the Euro in quite a few countries I save money because the money changers have been put out of business, but if I go to a country such as Great Britain, who do not use the Euro, where am I? At one of the thousands of money changing establishments, with them scraping off a little off the top every time I change my money.

This, by the way, is the only act of violence that Jesus ever performed during his ministry–on Wednesday, he overturned the money changers at the Temple, because you had to buy sanctified animals from the priests, and they used Shekels, whereas the common people used Roman coins, because they were under the yoke of Roman Rule. Let's run a little timeline, Jesus knocked over the money tables (and you can just imagine the scramble of people to grab the Shekels),  on Thursday evening he was arrested in on Friday morning he was crucified. Wednesday Thursday Friday. No slow-motion justice there. He acted on Wednesday and was dead and thought of as out of the way by Friday afternoon.

Many people when they get rich buy summer homes, boats, yachts, 4 or 5 cars and every other luxury you can imagine. What do I do?  I hope that my next royalty check has a good number on it. That's right, I get royalty checks, which means that I am Royal. That doesn't mean shit.  I have played and performed with my heart and soul and I have given it everything I've got every time, but I have less degrees of freedom than the man who owns the building I live in. What do you think of that?