Tuesday, December 6, 2016

Mind is the Triathlete

Suppose you want to “do” a triathlon.  Where would you begin? A triathlon is an intense aerobic endurance contest, consisting of a 2.4-mile ocean swim, a 112-mile bicycle ride, and a 26.2-mile marathon run.  Triathletes are elite athletes, not mere experts in one sport, but expert in three.  If a triathlon is your goal, your training is guided by it.

Margaret Laird was a world-class metaphysician, acknowledged as such by other elite metaphysicians.  In her writings she presents insights into the Science of Being which she grew for herself reading the works of Mary Baker Eddy, as well as many, many other great thinkers.  These revelations she discovered by practicing her Mind-being for over 70 years.  Her Mind’s Eye she understood as the “discernment of the spiritual fact of whatever the material senses” behold (S&H 585:10).  Her practice was the exercising of this core muscle. 

In her Journal article (Christian Science Journal - February 1938. Vol LV, No. 11,  p. 609) Mrs. Laird states that without the understanding of Love as Principle, human love, no matter how lovely its impression may seem, will produce the impression of love/hate on the level of belief.  She writes:

Christian Science has been appropriately called a religion of love.  But the appropriateness of such a designation has its root far deeper than the tolerance, kindliness, forgiveness, charity and justice which characterize those whom we usually think of as loving.  A man may express all of these attributes in their superficial meaning, which the world accepts, and yet not actually express the Love which is Principle.  In fact, considered humanly, these attributes imply duality and give reality to evil, in assuming that there is actually something to forgive, something undesirable of which to be tolerant.

In training for a big triathlon, everyday becomes a mini-triathlon.  You don’t jump into the big one, you start with a lot of little ones.  You start with a run around the block, a dip in the pool and a bike ride to the grocery store and back. Everyday you work out.  Everyday you try to do more.  And you learn an important insight: energy begets more energy.  The more you spend, the more you have to spend.  You discover an “inexhaustible Source” and its reciprocal functioning as you living.  The unseen Reciprocal action taking place imperceptibly as you practicing, is seen when you stop practicing.  You see it by not seeing it.  A friend once said, “Perfection makes me practice.”  You may take a break; it does not.

The one thing that all aerobic endurance contests, like triathlons and daily living have in common is, well, “aerobics”.  Aerobics means depending on air (spirit, inspiration) and exercises that are aerobic strengthen the heart and the lungs. We may forget that air is substance but it breathes our lungs. Try living today and tomorrow and next week, with all the little upsets and frustrations that offer to sink you, as if they are exercising you and your capacities to live the divine Principle, Love depending on Spirit substance.  All the negatives are making you stronger, just as all the positives are.  They are not two things but two aspects of the same thing, like inhaling and exhaling.

You can learn to “expand in the negative”.  But this is not beginner’s work.  Before you can learn to swim the negatives, you’ve got to learn to swim; and before that you’ve got to learn to float.  And before that you’ve got to get into the pool.  Swimming instructors tells us how hard it is to “teach people to float.”  Having trusted the ground under their feet for so long, they cannot overcome their resistance to trusting water to buoy them up instead.  The problem of course is not the ground or the water, it’s their sense of substance.  But radical reliance on water - the streaming 4th dimensional divine substance or underlying reality of all things- is the beginning of swimming and every experienced metaphysical triathlete who just dives in when others, afraid of sinking, stay in the shallows, had to learn to float, too.  Learning to float means relaxing and letting omnipresent Substance live you consciously, even if momentarily you are unconscious of It.

Here, another Laird insight is most important and that is the “permissiveness of all appearances.”  Science is exact knowledge and its metaphysical science includes no vague general sense of “error” to be destroyed but a pinpoint supposititious “cause” that disappears in the full identification of one’s self with and as infinite divine immortal Mind.  That is why the permissiveness of all appearances principle is a practical rule. Using the principle uncovers the hidden offender which hides in “every affective phenomena”. We learn that they are all but “the interpretive deformation through ignorance, of non-affective phenomena.”  We learn that  “all my affectivity is interpretive delirium resulting from illusory beliefs” and we learn that “my real Self is inaffective.”  (Benoit, Supreme Doctrine, pg. 152 ) This ignorance is not a person, not a thing; but seems to be and this “it” can greatly handicap the one who would be Mind as Mind’s conscious identity self-consciously swimming the great Channel of human daily living when the tide suddenly turns against him.

The permissiveness of all appearances in Mrs. Laird’s writings is opposed to the possessiveness attitude of the personal concept.  This personal possessiveness of the conceptual is nothing but the fact of individual divinity ignored.  This ignorance deforms (makes ugly) non-affective phenomena which are just minding their own business.  It makes them seem afflictive.  But the affliction is not in the phenomena appearing, since Mind is the only Presence presenting everything.  It is in the false view and its lone viewer, in the possessiveness attitude.  This attitude is the misinterpretation and the misinterpreter of the fact of God’s allness as individual being.  My own divinity ignored bedevils  me. By the discipline of permissiveness, the personal, false self impression is uncovered and its possessiveness attitude found to be the basic trouble-maker.  Again, permissiveness is no sissy act, it’s triathletic.  It’s intensely aerobic.  It depends absolutely on air.  It takes strong heart and lungs, a strong central Core Principle consciously lived to permit the ugly seeming in myself to appear in order to disappear.

  Metaphysical swimming with the negative results in “Kuhnian paradigm shifts” and the principle of “permissiveness of all appearances,” is one of the insightful keys that sets up this scientific shift since it accesses a 4th dimensional solution to a 3rd dimensional problem.

Thomas Kuhn, 20th century philosopher of science, coined the term "paradigm shift" in 1962. He used the familiar metaphor/image of the duck/rabbit to explain revolutionary science as contrasted with normal science.  As the old normal science paradigm is breaking down under its own anomalies, simultaneously a breakthrough is happening.  This is not just a simple personality adjustment among quirky scientists.  The scale of it is universal.  The Copernican revolution is an example.  A scientific revolution causes not only a radical change in the basic assumptions within the ruling theory of the science, but is a cataclysmic shift in the whole worldview belonging to that science and all of the implications which came with that view. (source: Wikipedia)

Just as you lose sight of the duck in the seeing of the bunny, so you lose sight of the supposititious personal concept and its possessiveness attitude in the seeing of the spiritual fact of being. All of its suppositional characteristics go with it, including its entire world-view and all it implies, leaving nothing appearing but the divine idea, the perfect concept of Mind, which you, including everything, are forever being.  The finite view disappears in the Infinite Vision, the imperfect seeming in the perfect being, and the fear of death vanishes in Life and its demonstration, Love, Principle.
Out of this Scientific shift from a consciousness of human concepts to the consciousness of the God-idea comes new creative power. Daily living becomes a great exercising of one's spiritual capacities. "Depending on air" one lives consciously as the divine Principle, Love, the Heart of all being and finds the power to swim with the negatives.  One discovers that the Principle of air (self) and water (world) is one Substance, Spirit.

Said Mrs. Eddy, "All true thoughts revolve in God's orbits: they come from God and return to Him." (Mis 22:16-18) With this fact, I can imagine the whole stream of thoughts, conscious and unconscious, as I do my heart pumping, blood circulating, lung-breathing Life activities.  My heart-lung system is right now reciprocally supplying the demand for positive full-bodied, red-oxygenated blood to all of my parts without my taking thought for it, and simultaneously right now is also receiving back the negative spent purple carbon-monoxided blood for recharging at its Source, all in one continuous loop.  Transforming its negative "old" into its positive "new" is just simple functioning of my Life Principle.   Just so my life of spiritual awareness, my 4th dimensional divine Selfhood including all thoughts, circulating as the Me that is Spirit, is me as inspired thought from the "source and condition of all existence,"  (SH 181: 2) bright with life-giving energy of Spirit, currenting through me AS me and all of my parts, including all of my universe.   By that one reciprocal Cognitive action of the one egoic Being that propels my consciousness "out" as my world, so by that one Act is my consciousness returned instantly, reflexively back into its infinite Souce for recharging.  This is Soul in its recognitive act.  Cognition and recognition are two aspects of the same thing: Mind-functioning as conscious identity. There are not two kinds of thoughts;  all thought is divine.  But humanly, here's the hang-up.

At the zero point of Infinity's cognitive movement, where its direction reverses itself back into Itself, lies the negative aspect of the infinite divine Reality, the "beginning" of the re-cognitive act of Soul.  Some of Mrs. Eddy's greatest insights into the nature of divine Mind deal with this point of return and of the scientifically correct method of humanly interpreting (living) it.  The whole of metaphysical science practice, the application of divine truth to human experience, hinges on "the knowledge of error which must precede,"  (S & H 252:8-10) the action of Truth which disposes of it.  Disposing doesn't mean destroying, it means putting it back in proper order.   Like my heart/lung in living, my "bad" blood is not destroyed, it is recycled!  It is redeemed and reconstituted. Hence Mrs. Laird's principle of the permissiveness of whatever the appearance; since Mind is the only appearing, let everything be, let everything flow.

But right at this point, the point where the divinity of humanity turns to return to its Source, the whole of human thinking gets hung up and the hang-up becomes a great handicap.  Humanlly, we intuitively feel this infinitesimal zero point (our Infinity) and misinterpret it as something.  We call it "nothing", "non-existence", no-sense, no-mind, as a gap in our awareness, as a defect, as a great lack, etc. and by misinterpretation, this no-mind infinitesimal point, becomes entifyied instead of understood . For the human mind, zero is as inconceivable as Infinity.  Infinity gets conceived of as many positive ones and zero as many negative ones.  Understood scientifically it is simply the negative aspect of Infinity, Mind at the point of its turn to return, Mind in its own Self-recognitive act (cognition/recognition like inhale exhale- two aspects one thing). 

But human thinking having entifyied it, given it all kinds of names, has educated itself in attaching great fear to it, and in blaming it for everything humanly undesirable.  We try to segregate it.  We try to destroy it.  And by this dualizing of nothing, the natural inaffective phenomena of the real Self, Soul, become the seeming afflictive phenomena of human experience, by this "interpretive delirium based on illusory beliefs."

"Permissiveness of all appearances" is a rule and it means letting all "negative" thoughts flow free. Do not try to hinder them and they will flow back into Mind, naturally, since Mind is the source and condition of all thought- even the thoughts that humans call "negative".  Depending on air, depending on water, this discipline sets up the shift of impressions currenting against us to energies currenting with us.  It is as if our daily swim suddenly was lifted by a super-charged energetic wave buoying us up and moving us forward toward our goal.  Living this fact of the negative aspect of my divinity unconsciously as the old paradigmatic fable of devil, "evil," and "error", "sin, sickness, death" etc. et al, I am misinterpreting the very equilpollence of God, of my own Mind.  I am resisting the flow of my own Mind's streaming thought. I am refusing to set up the radical shift, the scientific revolution, that the evolution of consciousness requires of me and that would fulfill my Life.  Without Science, what is there for me then, but suffering?  It is my own divinity mistinterpreted that bedevils me.

So how does swimming consciously this positive/negative identity of infinite Mind start?  You learn to float, then to swim, then to swim whatever the circumstances.  "Depending on Air" buoyed up by water you learn little by little that IT, Principle, will be there for you consciously, when you return your awareness to It as Its Self-awareness, its Self-recognitive act.  This is practice: living and learning, step by step, to live from the standpoint of your now divinity - no matter what.  Practice is your now divinity.    You have to be willing to let go of your present vision for a greater vision. It starts with practice, its stays with practice and only practice gains the "ear and right hand of omnipotence" (SH 15:28) the great Wave, Love as Principle. 

In her book,  Christian Science Re-explored, page 230, Mrs Laird demonstrates her keen understanding of Principle, Love, the oneness of Being in her courageous chapter 15 insightfully identifying Sex with God, the Love that is Principle.  She writes:

The chief characteristic of the unselfed-love that is Love is permissiveness.  In this Love there is  no taking thought for appearances, good and bad, right and wrong, life and death, sick and well.  Hubert Benoit in The Supreme Doctrine uses this illustration of permissiveness: "The caterpillar has to immobilize itself as a chrysalis in order to become a butterfly."  In other words, if we should live humanly without the neurosis of a split personality to bedevil us, we must die to ourselves as person.  This we do by living as Principle. We must become unmindful before we can become Mindful.  We must discover that we live, move, breathe humanly because we are divine.

Stephen Levine in the introduction to his book, Healing into Life and Death, writes:

There are many ways this work can be used.  It can be read like a book, not unlike
 passively sitting on a river bank listening to the rippling waters, or, one can go
swimming in it, actively participating in it as a healing process.  Indeed there is
a story about an intellectual youth who felt he could learn everything from books.
He read about the stars and became an astronomer, he read about history
and became a historian, he read about swimming and drowned.

Some things we can only learn by wading in slowly, from the direct experience
 of the ocean of being...To enter this process directly is to participate in the
healing we took birth for, is to become fully alive.

Such are the writings of Margaret Laird, world-class Mind triathlete.  Wade in.  Float.  Let the current of Awareness take you where it will.  Practice, practice, practice.

Friday, October 7, 2016

Wean Thyself

Dr. John M. Dorsey, in his later writings, develops his idea of emotional continence.  In his book Illness or Allness, he had not yet coined this image.  He shows awareness of the distinction between infantile narcissism and adult self-love throughout his writings, noting that the latter depends on an individual’s conceiving of self as comprehensively one all-inclusive meaning (life).  “Every individual is an all.”  Emotional continence – neither over-reaction nor under-reaction – is an indicator of the well-integrated self.  Understanding that I am one, neither less than one nor more than one as my imagination may momentarily tell me, is self-continence: self-contained, self aware, self-renewing individual being. In several of his works he uses the metaphor of a little child for the well-integrated self-conscious adult living his/her all as his/her self within, and he uses the word “God” for such a one.  He explores these themes in his 1971 book Psychology of Emotion: Self-discipline through Conscious Emotional Continence.

At the Laird seminar in Evanston, 1966, where Dr. Dorsey was invited to speak, he tells of his roll-calling at the beginning of his classes addressing each student of self, as “God,” “Mr. Jones-God”, “Ms. Smith-God,” etc. In a quick exchange between Dr. Dorsey and Mrs. Laird, he is about to pay verbal homage to Mrs. Laird and her pioneer spirit and asks her not to listen.  “There’s many a wonderful person (will you close your ears for a moment please Margaret).  She has a darling sturdiness in her devotion to the divinity of her world of self, which everyone who lives as Margaret Laird can…” She responds with unabashed childlikeness: “…go ahead. I don’t have to close my ears.  I know I’m divine.  Can God be flattered?”

Now emotional continence such as the above has nothing to do with blocking emotion.  That’s why I like his use of the word “continence.”  It tells me not to try to hold my feelings, breath or urine indefinitely which would be growingly painful to me.  It tells me that I need to learn how to express my emotions consciously through sublime-ating them and outgrow the habit of denying them.  That’s my word for it.  “We feel the energy of Spirit and rise into newness of Life because Spirit is what we are.” (WATW, pg.  xx) Through Science, I can learn how to move with the energies of my Spirit and rise myself into newness of life, if I can understand that each emotional event is all and only about itself.  It is always now and always new.  And this awareness of my Self-allness is “childlike.”

“I consciously am.  A little child accepts this fact naturally.  It had nothing to do with being Self-conscious and takes no thought about it.  Self-consciousness Is; I am.  I am I by being conscious identity and not-I as someone or something to take thought about.  Self-consciousness is Mind and the existence of all that Is or seems to be.  When there is no I-taking-thought, then there is I-being-thought.  This is the meaning of the statement, “Except ye become as a little child, ye cannot enter the Kingdom of Heaven.”   (L.L. Jan./Fe. 1976, pg. 1)

D.T. Suzuki, the renowned Zen master describes what happens in archery when the “thought-taking” no-mind takes control:
“As soon as we reflect, deliberate, and conceptualize, the original unconsciousness is lost and a thought interferes…The arrow is off the string but does not fly straight to the target, nor does the target stand where it is.  Calculation, which is miscalculation, sets in…Man is a thinking reed but his great works are done when he is not calculating and thinking.  “Childlikeness” has to be restored with long years of training in self-forgetfulness.

Newness and nowness are coordinates in Scientific metaphysics which Descartes did not imagine.  Keeping thenness and thereness in their place, the back and forth of human ruminating thought is left behind, as one rises in the scale of being – the vertical veridical –UP.   Dr. Dorsey in his writings states over and over that all human defensiveness including disguising one’s feelings as not-I (“my body is sick”) are necessary self-help for an individual who feels overwhelmed by living and trying not to sink down in to the abyss of unhappiness.  Every human is treading water, trying to keep head above water, staying afloat.  This is the human condition.

In working this article up, I reminded myself of a phrase I picked up about aging which correlates with the statement of Mrs. Eddy (Overcoming age is not renewing our youth but is thought going into new channels which history has not yet recorded), and the phrase I remembered was “hardening of the categories.”   A play on the phrase “hardening of the arteries,” I like the description of it given in Yahoo Answers describing how we remember things:

“Memory process tends to work with generalized categories.  If people do not have an appropriate category for something, they are unlikely to perceive it, store it in memory, or be able to retrieve it from memory later.  If categories are drawn incorrectly, people are likely to perceive and remember things inaccurately.  When information about phenomena that are different in important respects nonetheless get stored in memory under a single concept, errors of analysis may result.” 

After first drafting this article, I realized that the above description is a good one for “point of view” or attitude.  Not the altitude attitude that Science provides, but the basic human, trying not to sink into abysmal unhappiness manic attitude.

Mrs. Laird is quite clear on the fact that a Scientist who is the Science will lose his/her vision of divine/human Selfhood if that one refuses to wean him/her self from Oldness - “organization” mentality (memory-basing) - when the signals come to do so.  Ignoring the signals of impaired spiritual growth and progress “incontinence” and indicates a long-standing habit of refusing to sublime-ate all of one’s emotions, that is identify all emotion with Love, the awareness of perfection.   It also indicates a lack of spiritual self-understanding. 

Mrs. Laird has much to say in her works about the false human emotions: gratitude and humility, which represent not a fully matured spiritually conscious self, but a leveling off at a developmental impasse.  Again, trying to not sink in one’s own downerness.

In my research these past few months, I came across this wonderful statement of Mrs. Eddy’s written to the New York Herald on May 15, 1908, following the report of her demise.  The same message was repeated in stronger language for her followers on the next day, when this notice appeared in the Christian Science Sentinel:

Since Mrs. Eddy is watched, as one watches a criminal or a sick person, she begs to say, in her own behalf, that she is neither; therefore to be criticized or judged by either a daily drive or a dignified stay at home, is superfluous.  When accumulating work requires it, or because of a preference to remain indoors she omits her drive, do not strain at gnats or swallow camels over it, but try to be composed and resigned to the shocking fact that she is minding her own business, and recommends this surprising privilege to all her dear friends and enemies.
(Source: Mary Baker Eddy, Gillian Gill, pg. 529)

Sarcasm, a cousin of wit, indicates growing emotional continence.  Today, I might advise my self: “Don’t have a cow.”  But I find the important point of minding my own business is to feel the energy of Spirit and rise into NEWNESS now!  This is the demand of Truth pressuring me to be Love, the energy of Spirit, the male and female of Mind, functioning as newness and freshness of life. (WATW, pg. 204)  If  I have not minded my business (my back and forth thinking) into the integration of my maleness and my femaleness in my one/allness, I lack the regenerating force of my own Soul – Self-recognition as absolute Good-being – which acknowledgment opens the way to rise UP.  The human coordinates of now/then, here/there, must be put in the framework of Science: omnipresence, omniscience, omnipotence to stop the ruminating human mind and open the way for new self-insight.

I find my 95-year-old Margaret Laird babysitting a five-month-old baby.  Reminding her that “the human is human because it is divine and not human for the same reason” as she observed the baby doing itself divinely, she writes: “I saw her do all sorts of things that she had no way of “learning” how to do, and I realized that she knew without knowing that her original Nature is Self-responsibility and Self-fulfillment.”  (L.L. Jul/Aug. 1980, pg. 1)

We all know that wonderful quote from The Little Prince by Antoine de Saint- Exupery that what is essential is invisible to the eye and that it is only with the heart that one sees rightly, but suppose you could actually become invisible? 
Mrs. Eddy’s comment on “being watched” reminded me of a book by Cambridge biologist and psychic explorer Rupert Sheldrake – The Sense of Being Stared At -- in which is asserted that “our minds are not limited to our brains, but rather stretch outward to touch the beings and objects that we perceive.   Once this extended influence of the mind is taken into consideration, many puzzling phenomena being to make sense, including telepathy and phantom limbs.”  Dr. Dorsey sitting in analysis with Freud spoke of the feeling of being watched and Dr. Freud exclaimed – “That’s the whole of the trouble!”

Two diametrically opposed points of view of the same Mind phenomenon, just like the “unillumined human mind  (SH 573) versus John who “saw the human and divine coincidence,” …”divinity embracing humanity in Life and its demonstration – reducing to human perception and understanding the Life which is God.  In divine revelation, material and corporeal selfhood disappear, and the spiritual idea is understood.” (SH 561)  This spiritual continence – self-discipline through owning one’s individual allness -- resolves all human emotion in the understanding that is Self-Love.

“Know thyself, live your divinity (Spirit) self-consciously and you will be humanly what you are divinely – the male-female of Mind continually expanding into newness of Life…It will be a great day when Sex is given its nobility as Soul and restored to Love as the act of integration – the bond of cohesion.  In that day the human race will possess a morality, an ethical culture so pure, so virgin, that crime, poverty, way will be words without meaning.”  (WATW pg. 207)

“Dr. Dorsey found the confirmation of his life work when he “grew” one or two Christian Scientists in his world who interpreted and demonstrated that living the God-Nature Self consciously is God “doing” the living.  (L.L.  Sep./Oct. 1980, p. 4)

P.S.   I was recently contacted by a student of Kathryn Breese-Whiting, founder of the Phoenix Institute  (http://phoenixinstitute.us) offering me 5 boxes of Dr. Dorsey’s books.  Seems that Mrs. Dorsey and Mrs. Breese-Whiting were friends and Mrs. Dorsey gave the books to Mrs. Breese-White over 30 years ago.  These were entrusted to the new friend who contacted me to see if I would like them.  Traveling to Nashville to see our grandkids, Laura and I stopped in Kansas and picked up these books.  So, if any of the IMS newsletter readers would like a copy of the following books of Dr. Dorsey, shoot me an email –rob_craig@hotmail.com - and I will mail them to you.  The Psychic Nature of Physiology, The Psychology of Ethics,  The Psychology of Language, American Psychiatrist in Vienna and His Sigmund Freud.

Thursday, July 14, 2016

Awake to a Perfect Day

Sometimes the world seems upside down and backwards. Feeling off-balance has consequences, 
ramifying effects. Part of my self-conscious living practice is paying attention to my off-balance 
feelings and listening to them tell me what I need (usually it’s something which I don’t think I need.) “Nothing is either good or bad,” said Shakespeare,
“but thinking makes it so.”  
Thinking gets us into trouble more often than feeling does, especially when we do not trouble 
ourselves to think. We put our thinking on “auto-pilot” -- like the guy in his Tesla auto-car 
driving the interstate in Florida, and was watching a DVD. “It” auto-piloted him right into 
a semi-tractor trailer and he went on to his next life. Self unconscious living can only do so 
much and then it turns upside down and backwards taking “me” with it.
In the Science of metaphysical awareness, the thinking that is out from the one infinite 
divine Mind (formerly called “God”) my Mrs. Margaret Laird, writes: “When we quote, 
‘There is nothing good or bad but thinking makes it so,’ we do not mean that the definitive 
point of view incidental to the belief of two minds (dualism) affects Reality, the Good. 
The concept of Good is relative to Good and is not good in its own right. Thinking in the 
belief of two minds creates a veil blinding us to Reality. Reality is not good-and-bad, 
true-and-false, simply because that is the point of view. It makes no difference whether 
we think constructively or destructively, positively or negatively about the human picture.  
The picture is Reality in the language of individual discernment. Forget the language and 
Reality will evolve new thought forms in which the positive and negative are reconciled.  
What seems to be, seems to be because Being is its existence. As Truth comes to the conscious 
level, it takes care of the “conscious and unconscious thoughts of mortals” -- 
the unexamined assumptions - that have conditioned our points of view.  
Let the divine oneness of Mind be your thinking (you) and you will walk the earth safe and 
secure, liberated from the belief that thinking is divided into good-and-bad, 

Wednesday, February 17, 2016

He's Getting Ready to Fly

When I went into my hermitage, my poustinia to confront the Unconscious and listen to my thoughts, I had no other human presence to give me escape.  No heat, no electricity, no running water, no bathroom or shower.  A small log cabin at 10,000 ft elevation in the middle of a Colorado February.  In April, I had a visitor.  A fly.  At first, typically, I annoyed myself at his appearing.  Gradually, I allowed him to befriend me and we became companions.  This was long before I discovered J. Allen Boone's Kinship with All Life, Letters to Strongheart, and The Language of Silence.  He talks about his friendship with "Freddy the Fly."  And of the amazing things he learned by communing with "Freddie."

When I returned to my "real" life, as rooky retreatants were want to call it, and related my story of my friend the fly, my "friends" laughed at me comparing me to St. Francis of Assisi (the famous garden statue) who befriending all Nature was swarmed with birds; only I would be swarmed with flies someday if I kept it up.  Sure enough I was.  I was swarmed with all the little annoyances of everyday life. But the annoyances weren't coming from Nature.  They come from the usual human point of view; the self-important self-opinion of the "common sense" crowd; the crowded mind.  I wonder what Freddy the Fly would say about my "friends".

My favorite Allen Boone book is still You Are the Adventure, in which he states his idea of the purpose of Life:  "Virtually all...outstanding men and women whose lives have been recorded attributed this inner beam-voice to their God source, to that creative and governing Intelligence and Energy back of all manifestations of real being and life...this beam-voice, you will observe, if you study their lives, communicated with them in simple, understandable, soundless language, telling them just what to do about every detail of their lives and how to do it effectively; success or failure in each instance, you would also observe, depending on their individual receptivity and willingness to follow instructions.

What you call your particular beam-voice is, of course, a matter for you and you alone, to decide.  The wise thing, the experts say, is to call it what best helps you to grasp and to understand how it operates in all its relations with you.  The great spiritual achievers usually spoke of it on such terms as The Voice of God, The Christ, Revelation, Illumination, Insight, and so on.  The American Indian, with his keen sense of practicality of the Big Holy, calls it in-hearing and in-knowing.  The fellow with the diploma tags it with such terms as intuition, perception, inspiration, impression, awareness, immediate knowledge, discernment, instinct, comprehension, and so on.

(The common man)... may not know...or understand in the least how the hunch gets from its source to where he can recognize it and use it to do some good for himself.

At which point the entire situation again reverts to you, and to your unavoidable cosmic adventure of having to find more of YOU...know more of YOU...be more of YOU...and share more of YOU.  And it reverts to you in that inner self-consultation chamber of yours, where you ask yourself, or at least I hope you do, HOW, from this point on, YOU CAN BEST MAKE CONTACT WITH YOUR OWN INNER BEAM-VOICE, AND LET IT GUIDE YOU INTO LARGER AND MORE SATISFYING AREAS OF YOU. In the earsplitting clatter and din or the world's brawling and bawling, and especially with the widespread and growing effort by both seen and unseen agencies to get you off your beam, rob you of your individuality and its expression, and force you to think and act as others want you to think and act, it isn't easy.  But it can be done, and sooner or later, you will come to find out, it has to be done by each one of us."

Allen Boone, You Are the Adventure, pg. 219-221)

Thursday, April 2, 2015

Teleconference Note #1

In 1976, Dr. John M. Dorsey, M.D. published his autobiographical sketch An American Psychiatrist in Vienna, 1935-1937 and his Sigmund Freud.  For the previous 15 years Dr. Dorsey had occupied the chair of Wayne State University’s first University Professor.  His professional educational experience began at the University of Iowa from 1918 to 1928 and continued at the University of Michigan from 1928 to 1938, including two years of sabbatical study at the University of Vienna and the Viennese Psychoanalytic Institute.  During this latter period, Dr. Dorsey kept a journal, oriented mostly around his exciting mental growth, associated with his discovery of the rare power of the one and only psychoanalytical rule, namely, free association.

While all of Dr. Dorsey’s scientific works have been purposefully of an autobiographical nature, in this volume, formulated near the end of his life, he provides the key to understanding his numerous books and other writings.  Using description, narrative, and exposition he accounts for all of his meaningful living in terms of his own psychogenesis (mental development).  The close-ups of his chosen self-analyst, Dr. Sigmund Freud, are rare contributions detailing Dr. Dorsey’s sustained efforts to help himself by cultivating his own self-knowledge with this “peerless scholar of the mind.”

As I read through this work I found myself reading three different Dr. Dorsey’s.  Naturally.  First there were entries from his original journal while in Vienna and including insights, which came through his self-analysis with Freud.  Dorsey then was 35 years old and had never undertaken the discipline of free association. But this work, American Psychiatrist, was compiled in the late 1970’s almost 40 years after that life-changing experience, by the Dr. Dorsey, now 76 years old, with 35 years practice of "making the unconscious conscious".  One sees all of the Dr. Dorseys present and working in this work.  Dr. Dorsey had gone to Vienna not intending to become a psychoanalyst, but to further his understanding of psychiatry.  His personal encounter with Freud, however, had powerful and deep meaning for Dorsey who went on to become one of the leading psychoanalysts of his day.

In the preface of this book, Dr. Dorsey records:

Living the spirit of psychoanalytic helpfulness in Vienna saturated my self-identity with its power far beyond what might be understood as resulting from my studying about it, and furthered my practicing myself in free association there…By psychoanalysis here I mean specifically loyal devotion to working with the metapsychological method and insights first worked up by Sigmund Freud. (xiv)

And his preface ends with:

Whoever makes this writing his own will find later on that I learned the lesson that all help must be self-help in the only way possible to learn it effectively, namely, by growing it as precious painful experience of mine.

My most difficult language lesson teaches: My every word can be nothing but my own linguistic growth, despite the fact that I can and do enjoy its functioning as if it is not referring to me at all. *  Therefore, I carefully record: All I can mean by describing Sigmund Freud must really refer to my image of my Sigmund Freud.   (* See my chapter, "Idiolect," in Communication of Scientific Information, ed. Stacey B. Day (Switzerland:S. Karger, Basel, 1975, pp. 12-27)

Elsewhere, Dr. Dorsey describes this awakening to his solipsistic idiolect as his feeling thunderstruck, even humiliated, then experiencing his living as “wide awake” and “extremely sane.”

Now, it has been almost 40 years since his passing, and Dr. Dorsey is not remembered as one of the great psychoanalysts.  Other names such as Menninger, Szasz, Rogers, Maslow, Erikson are bigger ---until just recently.

In 1996, Peter M. Newton, professor of psychology at the Wright Institute, Berkeley, California and his colleague Beate Lohser, member of the Core Faculty a the San Francisco School of Psychology, Berkeley, both practicers of psychoanalytically oriented psychotherapy wrote their book, Unorthodox Freud: The View from the Couch.  “Based on existing full-length accounts by patients who were treated by Freud in the 1920s and ‘30s, this volume reveals an unexpected Freud ---one who is quite different from the current stereotype.”

“Contrary to the capricious Freud of in-house clinical lore, the starched Freud of Strachey’s Standard Edition, and the blank screen of traditional orthodoxy, Losher and Newton demonstrate that Freud was explicit about defining the primary task (making the unconscious conscious), directively instituted free association as the means to accomplish the task, and actively monitored his patient’s compliance with it…(thus)”organizing the treatment dyad in terms of its primary task and the division of labor between himself and his patient.”

One of these only 5 book length accounts of intimacy with Freud is Dr. Dorsey’s book, An American Psychiatrist in Vienna, 1935-1937, and His Sigmund Freud.

In her September/October 1980 Laird Letter, Mrs. Laird wrote:

A few years ago I gave a Seminar in Washington, D.C. with the text, “All consciousness is Mind, God, an infinite and not a finite consciousness.”  (Mary Baker Eddy,  Unity of Good, 24:12-16) Two incidents made the Seminar a momentous one.  I had not talked very long when I realized the three women down front were listening with such understanding that my imagination took off beyond the words I had prepared.  The second incident came after the morning session.  A woman in the audience said, “I see you have been reading Living Consciously: The Science of Self.”  “No, I have never heard of it.”  She said it was written by two M.D.’s – a Dr. Dorsey, Dean of the Psychiatry Department of Wayne State University, Detroit Michigan and a Dr. Seegers, Dean of the Physiology Department.  That afternoon she brought me a copy of the book, co-authored by these two eminent physicians, and I was thrilled to find the coincidence of the human and divine expressed in their language.  This reading resulted in sending a copy of the first edition of Christian Science Re-explored to Dr. Dorsey.  The book brought enthusiastic letters from both men, with the comment: “Your phrase, ‘conscious of’ implies a dualism the rest of your book rejects.  How could consciousness be conscious OF something ‘other’ if consciousness is all there is?  The exchange of these books brought a close association with Dr. Dorsey, resulting in his writing the Introduction to the second edition of Christian Science Re-explored.  (There follows in this Laird Letter notes from Dr. Dorsey’s last Adult Education Class which Mrs. Laird says indicates the common ground the Psychology of Self-divinity has with Christian Science.)

When you cannot see what is happening in a group, do not stare harder.  
Relax and look gently with your inner eye.
When you do not understand what a person is saying, do not grasp for every word.  
Give up your efforts. Become silent inside and listen with your deepest self.
When you are puzzled by what you see or hear, do not strive to figure things out.
 Stand back for a moment and become calm.  
When a person is calm, complex events appear simple.
To know what is happening, push less, open out, and be aware.  
See without staring.  Listen quietly rather than listening hard.  
Use intuition and reflection rather than trying to figure things out.
The more you can let go of trying, and the more open and receptive you become, 
the more easily you will know what is happening.
Also, stay in the present.  
The present is more available than either memories of the past or fantasies of the future.
So attend to what is happening now.

(John Heider - The Tao of Leadership – pg. 27)

My Self-consciousness always transcends my “other” reasoning. (A Dorsey insight)