Friday, December 21, 2012

piquancy - YES! agnosognosia - not so much...,

The teaching, in brief, is that Man, living in the given body, by his first birth, is capable of developing three further bodies composed of finer matters.

But what does this mean and what ideas will help us to comprehend it?

What, for example, might it mean that Man can develop another body apart from three further bodies? In what way can we picture another or second body? Now, we can conceive it first in this way. Imagine one man standing behind another man and controlling him in everything he does or says. The man in front obeys the instructions of the man behind him. That is, the intelligence and will of the man behind controls the actions of the man in front. We can take the man in front as the first body and the man behind as another or second body—that is, we can gain the idea of the second body controlling the first. This is easy enough to understand, for in any organization in life, as a military or business organization, there must be some degree of control of one individual by another in a higher position. In the case of a single individual, it is more difficult to grasp.

What in a single individual is going to control what in him? Indeed, it is impossible to understand, as long as a man takes) himself as one —that is, as long as he believes that that which thinks, speaks, acts, feels, loves and hates in him is always one and the same thing. Now you know that there is a phrase in the Work which says that unless a man divides himself into two, into an observing and an observed side, he can never shift from where he is. This is the starting-point of all else. It is actually the starting-point of another body in the sense that unless this division begins in a man, unless he can become the subject of his own observation, nothing can ever develop in him that can eventually control him internally and make the outer man-machine obey. That is, no second body can be organized in him.

Let us note here that the position of Observing 'I' is always internal to what it observes. What is more external cannot observe what is more internal. This means that 'I's that live in small mechanical external parts of centres cannot observe 'I's that lie in more internal conscious parts of centres. As self-observation becomes deeper, more emotional, more real and more necessary, the position of Observing 'I' becomes more internal. Self-Observation ceases to be superficial. Now around Observing 'I' gather all those 'I's in a man that wish to work and bring about order in the house that a man is. This forms what is called Deputy-Steward. The position of Deputy-Steward is therefore internal to the superficial man, the man turned to life and driven by outer circumstances. And so it is therefore among other things internal to False Personality. Now if all that is more external, more mechanical, in a man, begins to obey what is more internal in him, the internal begins to develop control of the outer or man-machine and the result is that the order of things begins to be reversed. The man is no longer so easily driven by life, by external influences, by changing circumstances, and by characteristic reactions of his personality to life and by the habits of his body. He is no longer driven from outside so completely, he is no longer a slave of his body, but begins to be controlled from within, for brief moments. This can be expressed in the following way:


Now if you will take this idea as simply as possible, you will see to some extent that the possession of a Second Body means that a man is different from an ordinary man. He is different because an ordinary man—a man-machine—is a function of life. A man-machine is driven by life, and so always acted upon by and obedient to life. That is, he is driven from outside and from the more external parts of him. But a man who has begun to have something internally organized in him is no longer so easily driven by outer life but is at times controlled from something within himself. That is, at times he works in a reverse direction. We may all imagine that we work already in this reverse direction, but this is only imagination. A very little sincere self-observation will shew us that we are truly functions of life. We are driven by life and circumstances and have nothing or very little that is strong enough to resist being driven in this way. You must realize that each man, is, of course, driven by life in a different way from other men. But all ordinary men, all men belonging to the circle of mechanical humanity, all men No. 1, No. 2 and No. 3, are driven from outside, even though they believe that they are not. In this sense, they are man-machines. And this is because nothing internal in them has been developed to such an extent that they obey this internal thing and so resist the kaleidoscope of changing life.

Nothing in them is strong enough to resist life—that is, strong enough to resist the reactions they ordinarily have to life. They certainly may notice they do not react to life as others do, and then they imagine they can resist life. This is mere illusion. Everyone reacts differently, in his or her own way. Where one person reacts, another may not. But it is all the same. It is all mechanical and life controls them through their particular special mechanical and habitual reactions to it. A good man fancies he is different from a bad man, an optimistic man feels he is different from a pessimistic man, a careful man thinks he is different from a careless man, and so on. Yet all are mechanical. All are driven by life. All cannot help being what they are. And if they try to be different, they will all find the same difficulties of changing themselves confronting them. And this means that all are, psychologically speaking, without anything organized in them to resist the particular mechanical effects that life has upon them. That is, they all work, or rather, are worked, from the life-side.

They are all different kinds of machines, reacting or working in different ways, but all are driven by the impact of outer life. They are mechanically good, mechanically, bad, mechanically optimistic, mechanically pessimistic, mechanically this and mechanically that. That is the teaching of the Work about Mechanicalness—about undeveloped Man, the Man-Machine, who serves Nature. But the Work teaches that Man can cease to be a machine by an inner development of individuality, consciousness and will—that is, of precisely those qualities that mechanical man imagines he already possesses.

In a fully-developed man—that is, a man possessing individuality, consciousness and will—it is not life and changing outer circumstances that mechanically drive him. Such a man has something organized in him which can resist life, something from which he can act. Such a man in short, can do. And this is because he possesses more bodies than the one he received at birth.

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