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II. The Holy Quaternity
Nur für Verrückte, it said on the door to the magical delights in Hermann Hesse's Der Steppenwolf. There are delights, which cannot be experienced, truths, which cannot be discovered, if one is not prepared to experience a touch of madness.
In this chapter, we will be concerned with existential psychology. The content is quite »odd«. It is a defense of the Devil.
1. A WRITING EXPERIMENT
When I had written Personlig dialektik, I rested (as it felt) for five years in Contentment. I was concerned with horses, love, writing, with making a theory of love, and peripherally with communicating my theory of personal dialectics (as I then called it).
Then, a list of enthusiastic comments on the 4-Room Apartment, and particularly the idea that it might be of use to the President of the United States, made me feel, somewhat paradoxically, that it was not quite good enough.
There was one question I had not answered, so far: How did one move through the rooms?
Was there something one could do, when trapped in minus experiences, some creative stance to take, so as to get out of Denial faster, and/or get through Confusion easier, perhaps more elegantly? Or must one simply wait patiently, experience one's experience, and try to »keep smiling«?
As I have said, the mere knowledge that one is in Denial, that one is in Confusion, makes things easier - one is relatively more centered. Then, there was the Problem Situation Matrix, with a number of good questions, particularly: What is the right discipline? and: What do I have to give up?
I did not think that was good enough. I felt challenged by the question. If there was some formula, some Open, Sesame! of change I might discover, then I'd really know that the theory was »a brain power plant« (to quote one of the enthusiastic comments).
I considered using the Problem Situation Matrix to work through the problem. Then I got another idea. I knew by experience that if I wrote free-associatively about whatever I felt, thought, experienced in the here and now, this frequently triggered a crisis. An artificial one, a »mini-crisis«, since it was confined to my writing-desk - but still, the confusion had felt real enough at times. Time and again, when I was writing in this manner, I had felt as if I was in empty space where cold, wild winds were blowing. I had, in fact »frequently experienced a strong sense of unreality«.
So, what if I wrote myself into this unreality, into such a »mini-crisis«, right now? Dropped myself like an experimental rat in NO- (or wherever I might discover I was), then moved through YES- to YES+, and described the experience? I had a fortnight's time free, it ought to be enough. If I did not discover an Open, Sesame! or any complete answer to my question, I would almost certainly be able to note a number of interesting details. Those were not as easily perceived, when one was in a real crisis, for then one was too distracted by reality.
It was a bright winter's day. Through the window, I saw my stallion rolling in the snow. There was music on the stereo:
I WAS ALONE, I TOOK A RIDE
I DIDN'T KNOW WHAT I WOULD FIND
MAYBE ANOTHER KIND OF MIND
It was the Beatles' Revolver.
2. FEELING LIKE COPERNICUS
It was a fascinating experiment, as it turned out. Synchronicity tightened, so that the books I read, the music I listened to, everything that happened, was woven into my thoughts, seeming to comment my experience. As a man, I felt I moved deeply into the territories of the soul. I was experimenter and experimental rat, both. As the experimental rat, I lived through a fortnight of turmoil. As the experimenter, I felt a got a much richer, much more complete phenomenology of the 4-Room Apartment, particularly of Denial and the matter of a right discipline. My writing trapped me in a dramatic example of the conflict, when one perceives, in Renewal, a truth which one is not courageous enough to take the consequences of, that is, bring to Contentment.
For my question was answered. The answer was an Open, Sesame! if there ever was one.
As the experimenter, I felt like Copernicus, the astronomer. He seems to have been a patient man. »He died only a few hours after the first copy of his book De Revolutionibus Orbium Coelestium (1543) was placed in his trembling hands.« It was his life's work. Therein he proved that the earth moved, circling the sun. He had known that for thirty years. But, as he wrote:
The sympathetic reader will understand my hesitation, I hope, for my discovery was a fourth dialectical matrix of change, which looked like this:
The Devil was the essence of NO-, and one got out of Denial by (consciously) being as the Devil. The Holy Ghost was the essence of YES-, and one got through Confusion faster by (consciously) being as the Holy Ghost. Christ was the essence of YES+, and one held on to one's Renewal experience and brought it to Contentment by (consciously) being as Christ.
To feel in touch with God was the deepest Contentment of all. Whenever one had lost this, one could find one's way back through being (as) the Devil, being (as) the Holy Ghost, and/or being (as) Christ.
This was my discovery. The connection was perfect. No easy words will describe what I felt. This was the truth, so help me God, and now I had to take the consequences. I was trapped.
3. IF I SEEM IRREVERENT
The Holy Quaternity is good psychology, but I will understand you, if you do not feel immediately convinced of this.
To show that it is, I will take you into the realms of experience, where these figures, or archetypes, are the map and the compass, in a sense: the territories of the soul. I will then describe them as existential stances, and connect them with the 4-Room Apartment. When we are through, I hope it will look like good psychology to you. What it looks like now, I do not know - heresy, perhaps.
I look up two words in the dictionary.
blasphemy impious or irreverent utterance or action concerning God or sacred things
heresy 1. religious opinion or doctrine at variance with the orthodox or accepted doctrine 2. any belief or theory that is strongly at variance with established beliefs, mores, etc.
I freely admit to heresy, since I will defend the Devil. But blasphemy - no. I may seem irreverent, but I am not. My theory of the Holy Quaternity is, in effect, quite pious: it has or shows reverence to God. Or, it has reverence to God, but does not show it? Perhaps; if so, that might be just as well.
There are so many absurd rumors about God, for example that he should be against curtains, of all things - not to speak of more extravagant pleasures. If I seem irreverent, this is for the atheists, those who shy away from God's name. I hope not to lose them.
I will begin by giving my interpretation, not of God, who (as Contentment) can conveniently be left out of the picture, but of the rest of the HQ - the Devil, the Holy Ghost, and Christ. I hope my interpretation is good enough, although unconventional, but obviously I can only describe my Devil, my Holy Ghost. There is no objectivity in the matter (although the Bible gives a description of Christ; I am not challenging that). There is, however, what one might call experiential consensus. By a »good enough« interpretation I mean one that does not violate the experiential consensus, so that you will recognize the Devil in my description, even if you see Him slightly differently - as you probably would any common friend, for that matter.
4. THE MAN WHO SAID HE WAS THE HOLY GHOST
In my youth, I was indifferent to »God and his gang«, as I thought of them. I laughed wildly at a drawing, titled »God as a Sleuth«, which portrayed God as an ageing Humphrey Bogart in a trenchcoat and slouch hat, cigarette dangling in his mouth.
I still treasure that drawing.
When I was twenty-eight, I met a man who said he was the Holy Ghost.
- I'm Claus, I said. There is coffee.
- I'm the Holy Ghost, said he.
He looked quite ordinary to me. I said nothing, since this happened in Kingsley Hall, the famous »schizophrenic community« organized by R.D. Laing, where one's self-presentation was free. It was in 1968, when I spent a memorable summer there. As a psychologist, I felt I had the right to be with schizophrenics, an alibi. My experience in Kingsley Hall is a tale worth telling, and I hope I will - but not now. So, I will not describe the man who said he was the Holy Ghost. Enough for now to say that he gave me the laughter of my life, and in the aftermath of that an understanding of the Holy Ghost, as a character.
The man made me see that the Holy Ghost was a principle, a stance. Anyone could be a Holy Ghost. Whoever wanted to was free to take that stance, which was, somehow, also the absolute of the Outsider's stance. The free creativity with no thought of the consequences. As the Holy Ghost, you stepped out of yourself, out of all your »identity requisites«, of everything that defined you - out of THE EMBROIDERY OF YOUR LIFE (which) HOLDS YOU IN AND KEEPS YOU OUT, as Judy Collins sang. As the Holy Ghost, you read your life like a book, and if it was a good enough life, it turned into a joke. You saw your life as if in God's perspective, and you laughed.
Since then, I had thought now and then about the Holy Ghost, the Devil, and God, but desultorily, as if within brackets. The Devil was probably a principle too, and one might take the Devil's stance. As for Christ, I felt uneasy when thinking about him, although it was hard not to, in the circumstances.
The Devil, I had thought, was no sadist. The Devil had pride. He was selfish and angry, good at hurting, if necessary. Christ was no masochist. He was humble and unselfish, good at suffering, if necessary. The Devil was beyond sadism, its transcendence. Christ was beyond masochism, its transcendence.
My thoughts were desultory, inconsequential - until I discovered that the Holy Quaternity was a fourth, dialectical matrix, and was trapped.
5. THE HQ DIALECTICS
All the four of them, as archetypes, are in dialectical relationships with one another, and, as a Quaternity, they create a mandala of perfect equilibrium. The mandala is broken, however, its power lost, if the Devil is denied his rights of membership.
The Devil is God's shadow, in Jung's sense. God's jester, antithesis and bad conscience. The Devil is Lucifer, the bringer of light, the angel God threw out for talking back at him. The Devil is man, Adam, who is furious at God for having driven him out of paradise with Eve, unjustly. As the Devil, Adam defends his right to eat of the Tree of Knowledge.
- I ate of the Tree, and it was good! It made me like you, God!
The Devil is disobedient, but he will not be ashamed. He knows he is innocent, for he loves God, too.
I speak now, by necessity, from personal experience. This is nothing but experience. I describe the Devil as I have seen Him, felt myself into Him, entered Him. You can enter archetypes: that's what archetypes are for.
Whoever sells his soul to the Devil is lost, undoubtedly, and falls into Denial. But whoever has no contact with the Devil is equally lost and can never be genuinely well adjusted in the present society (or, probably, in any society).
The Devil is not evil. He is evil only in so far as he is seen as evil. When driven out of the Quaternity, the Devil is evil. He defends selfishness and carnal knowledge, two good things; also the lies, the cunning, the masks, which are not good, but necessary, if one is to be well adjusted.
Descriptions of the Devil show a fascinating consensus. Slightly grey at his temples, always well dressed, most frequently in a conservative suit, vest and tie and all, and wearing, perhaps, the monogram E.O. (Evil One) discretely engraved on his cuff-links. I do not think the Devil is seen as evil. There is certainly no consensus on that. For, seeing the Devil as evil equals giving up one's lust, one's selfishness. If that is the condition, one prefers to turn one's back to God (whose existence is open to doubt, anyway).
I have a hypothesis. It is that most men and women today, if asked: Who do you feel you are most alike, the Devil, the Holy Ghost, or Christ? will answer: the Devil. They identify with the Devil - but unconsciously. This is not the conscious feeling into the Devil, the conscious taking of the Devil's stance, which, as I will show, takes you out of Denial. For if one unconsciously feels like the Devil, one feels bad, or evil, but equally unconsciously. Not knowing that one feels like the Devil, that is, condemned, one cannot defend oneself as the Devil, fight the false perceptions, the slander, the gossip, which blows into one's face, and feel the real innocence of the Devil's stance.
I was this far in my thoughts, I think, on New Year's Day, when Fredrik overturned the church.
Fredrik is the son of my old friend Henrik. He was one year old at the time, and the church was one of the little churches with a light in them and a mechanism playing Silent Night, which you put in a window, or somewhere, at Christmas. Fredrik was romping in the kitchen sofa by the window, and then he clumsily overturned the church.
Henrik smiled and said:
- Ecrasez l'infame!
By which he quoted Voltaire, as you might know, Reader. Crush the infamous! which was Voltaire's condemnation of the Catholic Church in France of the 18th century. Henrik is a man of culture. Take it as an example of that associative freedom I have described as characteristic of the Outsiders. I was delighted.
I thought: Well, I hope my interpretation of the Holy Quaternity will not overturn the Church, but if it does, I might play it as a game of Schlemiel and say: »How CLUMSY of me! I'm SO sorry!« etc.
Christ is humble and good at suffering. That is his art, and it is an art. Not to resist the suffering, not to rage against it as against an injustice, not to take it personally, as if it was an insult, but just take it upon yourself, when necessary. Let the pain be there, let it flow through you. You are »a pipe through which life flows« (T.E. Lawrence) and therefore also pain, at times.
And the humility? Not my will be done but Another's. How can you be certain that your will, whatever you happen to desire, is right for you? If a man asks you to go a mile with him, go two - it might be a pleasant walk, right? To give is good, feels good: it is a deep pleasure - if it is done without masochism. Do not sacrifice yourself!
You prevent masochism through being in touch with the Devil. If you are not in touch with the Devil, you will not be as Christ, but as the masochistic caricature of him. He did not sacrifice himself and then sulk, mumbling, »here I am sacrificing myself, and what thanks do I get«, etc, etc. He just let go of the ego, that was all. He described a way to transcend, a technique, if you will, and it was to want nothing, to seek nothing - except the freedom and the ecstasy this created. An exit to Eternity.
Do not confuse this with the masochistic caricature. The masochist is acting in ill will and bad faith, for that is what comes of sacrificing oneself. The selfishness of the masochist is unconscious, but in the unconscious it moves, and the hypocrisy can be smelt. I am raging: I go wild at the idea of self-sacrifice. It is morbid. Reader, can you remember one single time when you felt you were sacrificing yourself and something good came of it?
As soon as the Devil is taken into the Quaternity, given back His natural rights, as it were, one sees that this is for the good of all. The three others force the Devil to refrain from being evil. No loss to him, for being evil is no pleasure. In fact, it is boring. Simone Weil has written an interesting aphorism on that. Why is it, she asks, that the evil, which is really boring, sounds so exciting, when one hears of it, while the good, which is really interesting and a source of gladness (that is why it is the good, after all) sounds so bland, so uninteresting?
The Devil also has something to give to each one of the others. He jokes with God, who as we know is bent to take Himself too seriously at times. He keeps an eye on Christ to prevent any masochistic trespassing (»Jesus, no unnecessary suffering, remember!«). And, since the Devil if anyone is a man of common sense, the absolute realist, he can warn the Holy Ghost of exhibitionism and egocentric quirks. Lagom, or just right, self-censorship, you Ghost! he might say.
If this message was preached in all churches, I think it would mean, to all who unconsciously identify with the Devil: So now I am welcome too? As I am? It is no longer necessary to »put one's head under one's arm«, when going to church? I am permitted to be with God?
Almost all that is wrong with Christianity, its masochism, its abnegation of sensuality and all earthly delights, its hypocrisy - everything which made Nietzsche call it a »conspiracy against life« - would disappear, I think, if one just gave the Devil another trial, and righted Him. A minor correction, and the message would work as it was meant to - as a ladder to Heaven.
6. ON ARCHETYPAL ENERGY
I am a psychologist, God help me, and I present the idea of the Holy Quaternity as a psychological theory. Seen in a psychological perspective, the Devil, the Holy Ghost, and Christ, are archetypes, nothing but archetypes - but it is quite enough: they are amazingly powerful. As with dreams, so it is with archetypes: they can never be completely interpreted in words. The message must be grasped existentially, it must be lived through, before it can be comprehended intellectually.
Like any symbol, an archetype connects conscious and unconscious experience. A symbolon was originally a coin, broken in two halves: the symbol is half conscious, half unconscious, and always open to multiple interpretations.
Archetypes will never be real to a mind which cannot comprehend the simple truth of Jung's words: »Wirklich is was wirkt«. Archetypes are charged with energy. What is the nature of the archetypal energy?
Jung wrote: »Between the unknown essences of spirit and matter stands the reality of the psychic: the only reality which we can experience immediately«.
We can schematize Jung's psychology like this:
The ego is linked to the social, consensus reality through the persona and to the collective unconscious (the archetypal reality) through the shadow and the anima.
If one creates a good persona, without identifying with it, then integrates the shadow and the anima, one is free to experience the collective unconscious, the archetypes, and the Self - the condition being that one holds the two juxtaposed realities in equilibrium. This, I think, summarizes Jung's psychology in one sentence.
An archetype is to the collective unconscious what the persona is in the realm of social consensus reality. Just as Leopold Bloom of James Joyce's Ulysses in the social consensus reality (which is an arrangement) is a failed advertising agent for Freeman's Journal, cuckolded by his wife, so he is, in the archetypal realm of the collective unconscious, Ulysses - if he but experienced it. Does he? We are never told. He seems calm enough. His knowledge that his wife, Molly, will see her lover, Blazes Boylan, at four o'clock, has not made him frantic. At any rate, were he conscious of it, he would perceive his reality as we do, reading the book - it shimmers. »Reality begins to glow«, as Olof Lagercrantz wrote, »... we see life as God would see it, if he existed. A holy reality.«
This is the archetypal energy in action.
An archetype, in this example Ulysses, the mythical hero, gives a focus to one's experience, centers it, so that one knows how to interpret what happens, and what stance to take.
If one thinks of an archetypal hierarchy, Ulysses is obviously a »lower« archetype than the Devil, the Holy Ghost, and Christ. One might consider calling him »semi-archetypal«, on par with for example Theseus, S:t George and the Dragon, the Red Riding Hood, Socrates, and Joan of Arc.
Highest in the archetypal hierarchy is God, whose name is known by all, but of whom nothing is known, except that he (or she) is the Creator. We cannot describe God, nor can we take God's stance - or, it seems not advisable to do so, for then the fuse will blow, as it did for Nietzsche, soon after the famous letter he sent to Jacob Burkhardt, which begins: »Honestly, I would much prefer to be professor in Basel than God, but I have not dared to go so far in my private egotism as to neglect Creation...«
One rung down the ladder are the Devil, the Holy Ghost, and Christ. The stances they symbolize are existential alternatives in all situations, and, I suggest, in a conflict situation (that is, whenever you are not in Contentment) there are no alternatives but these. Not so with Socrates, for example. One can act like Socrates in certain situations, but not all; he is less applicable. So is Theseus: there has to be a labyrinth on the scene, with a Minotaur in it. As Ulysses, one can be .... (Sw: mångförslagen) in any situation, but the question always is, how? The Red Riding Hood is at the »games and script« rung of the archetypal ladder. She has only one good number, walking through the woods with baskets for Grandmother, hoping to meet a Wolf.
Reader, do this: Describe the Devil, the Holy Ghost, and Christ as you see them, in key words. Then think of a problem situation you are in, presently, and ask all three of them for advice! Begin with the Devil!
7. THE DEVIL AND THE DELIGHT EXPERIENCE
The Devil is both the essence of Denial and the figure who will take you out of Denial.
This is R.D. Laing on the experience of lying:
Laing goes on to say that this genuine privacy is the basis of genuine relationship,
That, I suggest, might be because the schizoid is not in touch with the Devil.
The key phrase is »within the territory of ourselves«. Lying, if necessary, defends this territory, as secrets mark its center. Good secrets are light, not dark. But the essence is the ability to be alone, that is, to be able to experience one's experience, consciously, without talking about it. This is the essence of the Devil's stance.
The Devil questions God's will, therefore he is the Controversial One. I suggest this as an addition to the list of all his names I find in Soule's Dictionary of English Synonyms: Satan, Lucifer, Belial, Apollyon, the Fiend, the Enemy (alter natively Arch-Fiend, Arch-Enemy), Deuce, the Evil One, the Old Serpent, Old Nick, the Prince of Darkness, and (as Apollyon) the Destroyer, also - somewhat mysteriously - the Prince of the Power of the Air.
If air is thinking, however, there is no mystery: The Devil always thinks freely.
In reality, what the Devil threatens, as the eternal free-thinker, is not God, but the prevalent personal and/or social interpretation of God's will. He threatens the equilibrium, the perspective of status quo - the old Contentment.
Let us not lie to ourselves (the Devil, of course, never does): there is no such thing as »the good society«, where all good and nothing but good is permitted, all evil and nothing but evil is forbidden, by convention and/or by law. All societies, and almost all families within them, create a consensus reality which, in one sense or another, makes it »hard to be someone«. Everywhere, social conventions, if not laws, threaten what Abraham Maslow has described as »the delight experience«.
It is also the essence of creativity. All societies are threatened by creativity, for it is a danger to the status quo, which has always, by all Establishments, been called God's will. Creativity, therefore, is of the Devil - particularly the creation of one's own conscience. If driven out of Paradise, out of one's delight experience, one can still, as the Devil, remember what it was like, that it was paradise, and that one had the right to be there.
8. THE HOLY GHOST WILL TAKE YOU THROUGH CONFUSION
The Holy Ghost is both the essence, or heart, of Confusion, when one is trapped there (feeling like a ghost, but not holy) and its transcendence, when one consciously takes the stance of the Holy Ghost. WHEN YOU'RE NOT FEELING HOLY, YOUR LONELINESS SAYS THAT YOU'VE SINNED, sings Leonard Cohen - but this sin is toward yourself. The unconscious identification with the Holy Ghost - the identification with a truth, a freedom, which you are unable to integrate, live by, but instead experience as »unreality« - traps you in Confusion.
The Holy Ghost is hard to describe, as a character. He is a man (or woman) without a character - and just that is what defines Him. He is anyone. You take the stance of the Holy Ghost, when you think, feel, act, like anyone, like someone else might act. It is, as I have read somewhere, »mostly a matter of letting go, of getting out of one's own way«.
God, the experience of God's presence, is the heart of Contentment. INQUIETUM EST COR NOSTRUM DONEC REQUIESCAT IN TE, said St Augustine. Unruly is my heart, until it rests in Thee.
Now, Christ - and from now on I will quote from my original manuscript, describing this journey into the territories of the soul - Christ, who is for me the hardest of them all.
He is the last piece of this jig-saw puzzle, and therefore he will fit into the last frame, I hope. Or else, it was all wrong, and I will feel like a failure again. PLEASE UNDERSTAND I NEVER HAD THE SECRET CHART... But if I make it, I will have placed a mandala in the Bull's Eye of existence, »between the unknown essences«, etc. I will have made that chart, TO TAKE ME TO THE HEART/OF THIS OR ANY OTHER MATTER - but of course it was not secret.
I have felt it hard to be as Christ, to enter that archetype. It is hard to be alone with Him, to get through all the comments and interpretations, and contemplate the essence of His message.
Joan Baez' voice on the stereo: »There is one last thing I have to ask you to do. Would you sing the Battle Hymn of the Republic with me?«
... AS HE DIED TO MAKE MEN HOLY/ LET US DIE TO MAKE MEN FREE...
If the logic, the hypothetical principle, by which I am laying this puzzle, holds up, Christ ought to be both the essence of Renewal and the »transitional figure«, by which (or as whom) one makes the passage to Contentment. Religiously, this makes sense, if one is in touch with God in Contentment. Christ said: »Whoever has seen me, he has seen the Father.« But I must make sense of it in my experience.
Also, the unconscious identification with Christ should make one lose the Renewal experience. One cannot get stuck in Renewal, one falls back. Wilhelm Reich might be a good example of that.
Reich obviously suffered from »absolutitis«, an inability to feel content with anything but the perfect, and consequently, to experience Contentment at all.
He certainly lost his Renewal.
Reich saw himself as a martyr, crucified by the cowardly, morbidly »normal« Little Man, who (as he felt) never listened to his message, his Truth. Had he but consciously seen himself as Christ, he would have been forced, immediately, to add the one sentence, which would have freed him: »Forgive them, for they know not what they do.« He knew it was so, and why, by his own theories, for God's sake! Losing nothing but his arrogance, he could have felt like Anyone again, felt good, even if no one but he saw that the orgone, the mysterious life energy he had discovered, was blue, or »faintly blue-grey«, as he wrote.
Yes. It holds up.
9. NOW THAT IT'S TIME
The night is cold. Orion shines bright over the stable. I piss a question mark in the snow. I do not know what I feel. I feel everything, all feelings I have ever felt. No - I do not feel bored. I feel glad, thankful, afraid, awed, trapped, ridiculous, mad, hilarious, bright. I am probably God's experimental rat.
I have written myself past my »Christ-resistance«, it seems, but to live through it will be another matter.
I go in again and listen to Nico, the singer. I love her husky, sensual voice.
Almost not so very far behind. Maybe she sings, »write on«, but »ride on« is good enough for me.
I have felt a strength in my writing, a certainty. I know I am right. This is the truth. If I feel afraid now, and I do, it is just the matter of the consequences. They are quite unpredictable.
They are all in agreement now, the three of them. The Devil and the Holy Ghost and Christ, all of them consider what I've written good enough.
10. WHEN IN RENEWAL ONE IS THERE WITH A TRUTH
Jesus was God's son. If I have the facts right, God selected Jesus to make known a certain truth. For a manifestation - a show, if you do not rear at the word. God could have selected anyone (presumably). But he singled out Jesus (presumably since he felt Jesus was right for the task). And Jesus saw, although it took courage, that it was not for him to question God's will.
If one is in Renewal, one is there with a truth. Whenever you are in Renewal, Reader, you have discovered a certain truth. It is probably not as great as Christ's truth, nor as Copernicus' truth, nor even as the truths Reich discovered. It might be a personal truth, seemingly of no interest to anyone but yourself and whoever you live with - but do not be too certain of that! In Renewal you are a man or a woman with a truth, and you have been singled out, like Jesus was, or permitted, by God to discover it - right?
You might reply: »There is no God!« - but that, in the context of this argument, is a »cop out«. Please do not forget, Reader, that I am showing you how to create »plus time« out of »minus time«, by mastery of change. For this purpose, I am talking of God and the rest of the HQ. You are free to see them as just scaffolding, to be taken down as soon as what is to be made is finished. What is to be made? Certain connections, aha-experiences within you, Reader, which will make you feel good, I hope. So, when you do, you are free to forget God - but for now, for the sake of this argument, I ask you to assume He exists.
If so, undoubtedly He has permitted you, or singled you out, to discover the truth which you stand with in Renewal. Picture it as a treasure. It inspires you, so it cannot be altogether insignificant. Now, it is a matter of taking the consequences.
Describe Christ by key words! Which of His traits are of use to you now, when you are to take the consequences, thereby moving to Contentment?
I see I have cornered myself. I am forced to see that by this argument, I stand with a truth, which God has singled me out to discover (in so far as I am alone with it), or permitted me to discover (in so far as I am not) - the HQ.
This truth has nothing to do with me. God might have singled out anyone (but for some perverse reason He alone knows He had to take me, of all men. I am not the right person for this truth! I am an almost person, etc.) As soon as I consider that I now will have to stand by this, which I have written, or, live as the one who has written it - live as the Devil's Psychologist, whatever - I feel quite uneasy.
I feel like Copernicus. I feel like Nico. I feel like the confused rat in an old psychological experiment, showing the nature of double approach/ avoidance conflicts.
Karen Blixen has written somewhere that proud people feel they live the life God had in mind for them, and that this is what they are proud of.
© Copyright 1998-2003 Claes F. Janssen. All rights reserved.
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