|How Silly Becomes Meaningful|
|copyright 1989 -2000 Jan Cox|
|Reminder: The following is a rough transcript of one of Jan's extemporaneous talks, and people do not speak, ad lib, in the same way they write. Thus some sentence fragments, and other linguistic anaomolies can pop up which may have slipped past the transcriber. But the overall tone and intent of his comments still comes through for those wanting to hear something new.|
I want to remind you about Medivesco. First, does everyone realize the connection between what I've recently been talking about -- reversing things -- and Medivesco? In case you've forgotten the original premise, Medivesco is where you go to the doctor and he checks you over -- and suddenly, you seem to be all right. Or, even better, you just call the doctor to make an appointment and after you hang up the phone you seem to be better. It's as though a mere inspection of the problem seems to alleviate, if not cure, the problem.
I want you to have a full recognition, in your own thinking, that "Medivesco" is not some sort of ordinary study (or should I say worry/study), wherein you're looking at what seems to be a personal problem on the basis that you desire some specific change in the problem. Medivesco is not an ORDINARY looking into a problem, of the type where you expect a certain desired result. Instead, it falls into what ordinary consciousness would want to call the "objective" realm.
Let's say you go to the doctor, and he suggests a blood test. And let's say that your idea of a blood test falls somewhere between a meeting in a dark alley with Big Bad John and taking out your own tonsils with a pair of pliers. Simply think about having a blood test, and suddenly you're cured. Medivesco is NOT you hoping that looking into something means it will begin to alter and then you'll take the alteration and push things where you think they ought to go. That will not work.
With ordinary humanity, there is no continuing attempt to look into anything. Ordinary intelligence would, after thinking about the idea of Medivesco for a second, admit that such alteration does occur, but that it is an untimely, unwanted, and at the very least, uncontrollable, result. Sort of an unwanted or uncontrollable anomaly. "I've called the doctor before when I felt bad, and it didn't do a damn thing. I've had these migraines and nobody's been able to help." In other words, this "Medivesco" works sometimes, but it's really just a sometime anomaly.
One who aspires to be revolutionary cannot hope for a SPECIFIC change -- just change. "I don't care how. I just want the thing to change." You have to mean that; you can't have a specific goal in mind. Now do you see why most people of decent City intelligence would immediately abandon the whole idea?
If they were sly, they might think, "Well you have to have a goal in mind, or you're an idiot. If you're going to control the thing, you have to know where it's going. If the ship knows not where it's going, it's going nowhere. But wait -- if it's NOT controllable, any result will just be an accident, anyway." To hell with HOW the thing changes. All you can do is desire the change itself, without a specific goal in mind. That is, if you're going to use this at all. And at that point, the cheers of the crowd and the smell of grease paint get very faint indeed.
Let me remind you also about the idea of people reversing a thing in order to introduce new energy into a situation. Remember the story of the unwanted suitor? I pointed out in that case that one way to discourage such a person would be to simply reverse the way you react to them. He/she begins to hit on you, ask you where you live, when you get home -- and everything you do just seems to encourage them. The more you try and show that you're not interested, the more the person pursues you.
Now, if you want to see the suitor lose interest in a flash, go in the next day, walk right up to them and say, "Hey! I never DID find out where you live. Ah, c'mon. I bet I don't even have a chance with you, hey? What time to you get off?" You act as if what happened between the two of you before (you rejecting their advances) never happened, and you start playing them back to them. Suddenly, their pornographic plans for you are gone. They are going to feel like they don't even have a phonograph to play you on and the unwanted sexual interest will disappear. It might take 15 seconds for it to begin to strike the person, and then another 20 seconds for him/her to react, but after that point you'd be lucky if they ever said another word to you.
That's an example of reversal. Now Medivesco means: to investigate, but in an objective manner. That is, with no goal in mind. Remember, your own nervous system has a goal in mind or you wouldn't even want to change the situation. You have to understand that part of the dialogue already has a goal in mind. But you can't listen to that. You can't let the dialogue participate. You can agree with the idea of change, but not the goal. Otherwise, all you'll think is that the result is uncontrollable and unwanted.
The change I'm talking about IS an anomaly. Life has not arranged for people to take any interest in this idea at all. Life doesn't need for people to recognize this. Yet, I would also suggest that what I'm describing is behind all those ideas of "You should study yourself," and "The unexamined life is not worth living."
Let's take this further: There can be nothing in the least "sacred" about you. Nothing that you seem to think, or feel, or sense, or be aware of. Nothing going on "in here" or "out there" can be exempt from looking into. About everything, consider: To What End? Why is this going on? For example, "Why do I keep getting sick and then insist I'm not sick, and then I'll finally call the doctor and by the time I hang up, I feel fine. Am I some kind of hypercontractor or what?"
Medivesco is a sort of free-time investigation. A sort of "Hmmmmmm." You have to investigate the thing with no preconceived notions. Don't forget that there's always a preconceived notion there in your system, but you have to ignore that part. There is no way to describe Medivesco exactly, but you CAN do it, if you belong here. If you've gotten anything out of This at all, you've already experienced it. You've discovered things you didn't expect, and you went, "Wow," because there it was. That would be closer to a description of Medivesco than anything else. You can't go, "There's a zucchini, and I know it's a zucchini, because it looks an awful lot like a zucchini." You can't do that. You have to keep what they used to call an "open mind."
I'll give you at least a water soluble tattoo: Never underestimate the potential of Medivesco. And if you do not use Medivesco, you're underestimating the potential. And if you DO use it and you expect a specific change to occur, you do not understand the potential because you'll never experience the actual use.
Next paragraph. May I suggest something else to you, something I've been talking about off and on. No, let's reverse that, just for fun: it's something I've never talked about. No, well, maybe I've talked about it, but now it's different... If you know exactly where you are, you're in the City.
A Real Revolutionist would look upon the dialogue that goes on within everyone as a sort of simplistic, silly, sophomoric thing that is personally meaningless. The dialogue is literally just background noise. It's no more than the inescapable noises echoing up from the stomach after you eat a meal. If you get good, it's the rushing of the blood, elevator muzak in the brain.
You should look at all this as a whole; this is not some half-baked proverb I'm coming up with: "Yeah, I guess a lot of what goes on in my head is garbage." A lot? Ha, all of it is! I don't care how important it seems. If you had a continual awareness of how childish, but how inescapable, those noises are, you would find out something valuable to use.
No one ever questions the basic pertinence of what goes on in their heads. They approach it piecemeal. "You're right, some of the things that go on in here are garbage. Parts of it are nonsense." What do you mean, parts? I'm suggesting that a Revolutionist would begin to see that the WHOLE process is NOISE. Not upsetting noise, not good noise, not partially one and partially the other. Nope. It's more like you were born with cheap fillings in your teeth that pick up two or three low wattage a.m. stations on your radio.
These noises have to go on in your head, but they have no pertinence at all. It's all silly. If you don't like silly, think of it as sophomoric. It's truly, as far as New Intelligence is concerned, unimportant -- UNTIL YOU THINK OTHERWISE. You can be sitting there thinking, "How true that is," and laughing, then suddenly something hits your G-spot upstairs and you're whistling along with the muzak again. Go along with the dialogue, about something serious, and then it IS serious. Get it? If it's serious to you, IT'S SERIOUS.
There's no way you can ordinarily, intellectually, deal with this flow that goes on up top because it's too fleet. There's no way to directly deal with the process of what goes on in your head because, at the very least, the process was going on a split second before you were conscious of it. At the very second that you were aware there was a "me" in here and a "not-me" out there, there was the dialogue.
You can't catch the flow, you can't stop it, you can't tackle it. You can't keep up with it -- you just can't. If you still believe you can slow it down and look at it...what do you want me to call you? How about "later"? How about "never"? How about "John Q. Public."
The dialogue is either (1) planning or (2) rehashing, the ordinary past. If you can get a sort of free-time, nonspecific view of all this, then I don't have to TELL you it's silly and sophomoric. What has the dialogue ever done for you? Look right quick. Look at what's going on in there. Is it anything really new? "When I get there, I'm going to do so and so. Alright... When I get there, I'm going to do so and so..." I suggest that, when you see it, at best, it's silly. In the City, without it, people are struck deaf, dumb and blind -- no longer fully functional. Yet, you can see that it's only background noise.
Of course, you can't get rid of it. If you think you can, you've taken up fighting with the Tar Baby. (If you don't remember that story, it's about a rabbit who was tricked into attacking a tar baby and stuck to it -- the attack was his downfall, because the harder he fought, the stucker he got.) You could look at looking at your dialogue as a sort of tar baby. If you try to attack it, as "psychological" or otherwise, you're arguing with a tar baby. You're stuck to it like glue.
Next unrelated paragraph. Oh, alright, it may be connected. What operationally happens in people, regarding their bad impressions of themselves? For example, someone says, "I am too shy." And everything in the ordinary level of intelligence is affected by that. They think about it, they think it's a problem, and so on. But what I want to ask you is this: Is this bad impression -- this "shyness" -- of the person temporally, physically there right then? In other words, is what's present right then the actual shyness, or their thinking about being shy?
Think of any example in you of something you don't like about you: something to do with your behavior, with the dance you're doing in Life; some "personality" trait that you find no favor with. Now Consider: Is this bad impression actually based on a continual awareness of events wherein you are subject to this weakness? Is it the actual event? Is that the basis of your bad impression of yourself in that area? Or is it the thinking about it?
Everybody, generally, would say it's the former, right? "I worry about being too shy because I continue to find myself in circumstances where I AM too shy." Are you sure? Ordinary intelligence would find my question moot, silly, but think: Are you sure? Is the impression based on a string of actual, physical events wherein you are actually too shy? Is that the operational basis of your impression? Well. If you can see where I'm pointing, you might say the answer would NOT be, "certainly."
Continuing with this example, if you did not entertain the dialogue of talking about being shy, if you could just stop entertaining your internal dialogue about that subject -- would you still be too shy? If you got just one wish from some genie -- if you claimed that being shy was one of the great fears that has plagued you all your life, and somehow you had the power to change one thing regarding the dialogue and you said, "I want my internal noise to never more talk about being too shy," -- would you then be too shy? Would you? Remember, I let you assume there was a true basis for your being too shy -- otherwise you wouldn't think about it, would you? But consider: Would you, if you couldn't think about being shy, be too shy?
What if you could get to the point where, WHATEVER the dialogue was, you could ignore it? What if it became just "old crazy Uncle Fred in the attic"? I told you you should never store madmen in your attic. But everyone ends up with one. Old Uncle Fred has been up there forever. There's no way to extricate him. But, he's harmless. To get him out, you might have to burn down the whole house, and I don't think I have to carry things any further than that for you to see the potential results of THAT action. At the least, kicking him out might be more trouble than it was worth.
What if everything in you, that you used to call "what I think, what I feel," was just good for a chuckle? All the silly things, all the serious things. The parts where you're still choking your mother or wrestling with your ex-wife or husband, and the parts where you're singing the same ditty over and over again. If nothing else, you realize for 30 years you've been listening to the same thing over and over again. You've been LISTENING to it. If nothing else, THAT's good for a laugh.
people in the City would agree that the ability to "plan" is the distinguishing
feature that separates homo sapiens from the dumb animals. But once
you can see the process, what passes for "planning" will merely make you
chuckle. Because you think it over and over. And that's funny.
If you need to eat, eat. If you need to have parents, have parents. What's all the rest of the internal gossip got to do with anything? Are you going to sit around like a drunken sophomore and mumble the same things about everything over and over? You might as well sit down with a bunch of drunken kids.
you begin to see how silly it is, you begin to see how silly it is.
That's as good a word as any: silly, childish, meaningless.
Until, of course, you begin to take it seriously -- then it DOES become
meaningful. Then you've jumped right in with the sophomores and
are slamming your fist down on the table right with them. "I mean,
this is serious!" If you mean that, it is.