The main Kernel of Choice OS
THE MAIN KERNEL OF CHOICE OS, the operating system of homo delectus
The dictionary definition of the word kernel is the central and most important part of something, a seed, grain, core, the core of a seed or the central, most essential part of an operating system in this case, its backbone. So, let us examine what the main kernels of our operating system for happiness would be:
Primary kernel: CHOICE
The most obvious, greatest advantage of a fully customizable belief system is the freedom to exercise full choice in every single part of the software. Choice about every single belief that guides our thoughts, our emotions, our actions and reactions. Whether a specific part our belief system was inherited through our families or cultural environment, chosen because of experiences or events or chosen consciously, once it becomes part of the web of beliefs that sustain our reality it is no longer questioned. In an open source architecture, the core belief system, the backbone of the system, the main kernel and the core kernels and instructions within it would be practically identical, same as in a proprietary system such as a mass religion or ideological group of any kind. This would happen naturally because every change in the core system would influence everything in the OS so these core instructions would be challenged first by any user. If they were found to hold a steady platform for the system they would be the norm for the system, same as in a template that obviously works and provides flexibility. If a core instruction within the main kernel provided a problem in some application, the fix would be valuable and adapted by everyone, not because they had to but because they would be grateful for the upgrade, the fix, if it only influenced the core positively. According to the law of diminishing returns, most users would not mess with the core if there were no specific reason.
Each user/believer would have absolute choice to alter any part of their personal belief system including the primary kernel or backbone, but practically nobody would even have any interest in touching it, unless it limited specific choices in customization. In a religion or an ideological group, choices about the direction of the belief system according to circumstances are made by a central authority, and individuals choose to agree or not to a larger or smaller degree. The choice is usually made arbitrarily because there is no measurement to determine the “correctness” of the belief. In an open source platform. A bunch of people have the authority to decide and steer the ideology by deviation, addition, extrapolation or interpretation towards anywhere they choose, free of obligation to even consider let alone explain to the followers why and how these believes improve their lives.
Whose happiness did the Spanish Inquisition serve, whose happiness did holy wars serve and which religious or ideological group ever consider anybody’s happiness in any doctrine? Whose happiness do prohibition of divorce laws serve, still in force in various countries, and has anybody ever even considered the wellbeing of the believers in the presentation of their ideology?
You may argue that Marxist philosophies serve the happiness of the proletariat, but is it so? The workers and the poor just get into endless anger and victimhood, struggles and dissatisfaction and the decades of the communist block proved that people where still poor workers. The ideology, even as a utopic concept would serve their financial interests, not their happiness or level of satisfaction with life. What about morality laws that lead to a great number of people to be punished, ostracized, facing social disgrace or even tortured and killed? What about the tons of shame and guilt that all religious ideologies hoist upon their believers for failing to conform to ethereal standards of morality?
All spiritual, political, economic, social or other belief systems aspire to a goal; for Christianity the message in general is “love each other, serve each other, share with each other, sacrifice yourself, be humble, observe moral rules”, for the Islam it is more oriented towards the observe moral rules part and for the Asian religions and spiritual practices it is more about eradication of the ego, discipline, duty, humility etc. For left wing or right wing ideologies it is about distribution of wealth, class struggle and domination, for New Age spiritualism it is all of the above but somehow judgmental, paranoid, pretentious and indignant, for Judaism it is tilted towards tradition but also paradoxically inquiry etc. etc.
If the final objective is happiness, then our belief system should be geared towards it, and contrary to universal belief, happiness is a choice. Achievable by the choice to take control of the deciding software. Life itself proves that happiness is a choice because you may see two people in identical circumstances one happy and the other miserable. We even experience ourselves at different times happy in circumstances that at other moments made us feel miserable. Exercising our choice of happiness starts with consciously choosing happiness as our achievable objective, believing that it is feasible and beginning to take steps towards achieving it in an organized fashion.
Although happiness is our goal, CHOICE, our divine gift of choice is the central instruction, the absolute core of a Homo delectus operating system. To achieve happiness, it is imperative to believe that it is achievable and that it requires nothing beyond our control to experience it, that it is our choice whether we deserve it, whether we are entitled to happiness. So, the primary 17 pieces of code, instructions of the main kernel of the operating system of Homo delectus are:
I AM A BEING OF CHOICE. I CAN NEVER KNOW WHO I AM IF I AM DEFINED BY OTHER PEOPLE’S PERCEPTIONS. I CAN ONLY TRULY KNOW WHO I AM IF I, ONLY I CHOOSE WHO I AM. Many people can interpret a painting or a poem, but only the painter or poet themselves know what they were intending to transmit, what it makes them feel. Sometimes we are told that we are lazy, immoral, useless, unreliable and good for nothing or whatever. We are hurt, because regardless of being indignant, deep down we feel that our accusers are right. But if we firmly believe that anything we are and anything that happens to us is our choice, the simple question is: Why am I choosing to be lazy, unreliable etc.?
Nobody has ever been happy as a victim of others or a victim of circumstances, and anything that is not our full choice consciously makes us a victim. Victimhood is a comfortable albeit miserable stance; if you are a victim, there is nothing you can do besides protest, complain and be angry, so you can stay inactive, make no choice. But our choice is our soul and the less we exercise it the more we diminish and constrict it. In addition, powerlessness invokes not only anger but fear and anxiety. If my happiness depends on things beyond my choice, beyond my control, maybe I will never get it! And this extends to everything. If I cannot have a decent relationship because all my girlfriends are hysterical, insane, demanding, unreasonable bitches that are never satisfied with anything, or if all my boyfriends are selfish pigs and creeps, then I depend on the right person to come along, so maybe neither I or them will ever experience a beautiful relationship.
What if I decide to believe that everything is my choice? That instead of choosing a perception of every relationship that makes me a victim, closing my heart to a person I once loved and desired, desecrating every good moment, judging every intention, living a life of yearning the right person to show up, powerless and in anxiety over it ever happening, I can choose to be the right person for a beautiful relationship? Then maybe I can actually have one! In a relationship or out, everything would be my choice, no fear, no anxiety, no distress, no powerlessness. CHOICE is a liberating and empowering force, choice is our soul, our essence, our very core and so it should be the very core of our operating system.
The next instruction, logically concerns the first choice that needs to be taken for the objective of the operating system to be achieved:
I CONSCIOUSLY CHOOSE HAPPINESS AS MY PRIORITY, MY PURPOSE IN LIFE, NOT IN A THEORETICAL, ABSTRACT WAY, BUT AS MY PRIMARY DIRECTION AND DESTINATION, COMPROMISED BY NOTHING. I CHOOSE THAT I AM ENTITLED TO AND FULLY DESERVE HAPPINESS. Who else would be qualified or have the right to decide what I deserve in my life? Happiness is the feeling that everything, absolutely everything is deliciously as it should be. So if I am not feeling happy, I can ask myself “What is not as it should be in my life at this moment?”. If I can answer this question, for example “what is not as it should be is Mary is leaving me” or “my boss treats me like shit”, “there is too much noise for me to sleep”, then the next question is: Can I do something about it? Can I convince Mary to stay, can I change my boss’s behavior or can I change boss or even a job, can I stop the noise or can I go sleep somewhere else? Regardless of what the issue is, if I have the power to change the object of my lack of “as it should-be-ness” I have no issue. Same as when my issue is that I am bursting to pee, I just pee, whether it takes no effort besides unbuttoning my fly or some effort to walk a few hundred meters and climb a couple of floors to find a toilet, my happiness and the restoration of “as it shouldbeness” is guaranteed. I just take action and take the necessary steps to restore my state of satisfaction and happiness.
What if however, things are beyond my physical control as often happens? What if I cannot restore “as it should-be-ness” to my satisfaction, if Mary already is in love with somebody else and no change in me would convince her, if it is not my boss in a job I can change but my military commander or professor in the university that treats me badly and I don’t wish to change either, if stopping the noise is not within my power and I am in the only place available for the moment? Then, since my happiness is my priority it serves me to see the situation from a perception point that makes it as it should be: the best thing that could happen to me!
How do I achieve this? In a myriad different artful ways, each occasion making me more adept in the Art of Happiness. In the case of Mary leaving me I could see the freedom that letting go gives me, the opportunity to start fresh and make a new relationship that would make me happier, the opportunity to experience new things, the time, opportunity and possibility for so many new choices liberated by this event. To do things or even change monumental things that were never considered because of the constraints of the particular relationship, such as moving to another city or country, changing way of life, there are endless possibilities.
In the case of boss, a superior, somebody who holds some power over me, it is an opportunity to understand them and what would make them happy with my performance, practice not giving a fuck, or make the whole thing a booster for my intention to persevere, give value to my achievement and pride to me. In the case of the noise preventing me from sleeping, I can find the opportunity to take a late night stroll, to watch a movie, read a book, write some emails and connect with people I haven’t had time to connect with, be creative, have fun. Does it serve me more to be miserable and a victim of circumstances?
The next step through the backbone of my belief system would naturally be to reinforce and stratify the first two pieces of code and the ones to follow. Since the whole system is based on and comprised of beliefs, I need to reinforce the beliefs. This is where trust comes in. Because trust (or faith) is a much stronger and resistant belief, it is the beneficial side of super strong beliefs, contrary to the dark nature of dogma.
TRUST IS A CHOICE, TRUST IS A MUSCLE THAT BECOMES STRONGER THE MORE IT IS EXERCISED, TRUST IS PEACE. SO I CAN JUST CHOOSE TO TRUST THAT EVERYTHING IS EXACTLY AS IT SHOULD BE NO MATTER WHAT, TO TRUST THAT I HAVE FULL CHOICE OVER EVERYTHING INCLUDING MY HAPPINESS, TO TRUST BEYOND ANY DOUBT THAT EVERYTHING I AM OR DO IS BY MY CHOICE. TO TRUST MY CHOICES AND TO TRUST THE OPERATING SYSTEM I AM INSTALLING. We choose whether we trust something or not, because trust is only relevant when our information is incomplete, when things are uncertain or challenged. The stronger the trust, the stronger the belief. The more we exercise trust, the easier it becomes, because like a muscle, trust grows when exercised. And trust means peace, no anxiety, no mind fuck, no worries, no suffering.
But if trust is so valuable, why is it so hard? Why does our muscle of trust atrophy to such a degree in some of us that it becomes almost impossible? Why do we resist so much something so good for us? This is part of the set of universal collective paradoxes, since we are instructed to mistrust from the earliest possible age, as soon as we can understand words. Let us do some quick calculations, to see just how beneficial trust is:
The accounting of trust- simple math to help us figure it out:
Let us try to examine a simple and common story. Let us say that John and Helen are in their mid-forties, they have been married for over fifteen years, and they have two or three school age children. Let us say now, that Helen has been noticing lately that John speaks on the phone and when she asks who it is he says wrong number, that she notices there are brochures of jewelry stores, rental cabins in the woods, travel info in John’s bag. Let us add that a friend told her she saw John hugging a pretty blonde in the park, that his clothes smell of perfume and that he has had a secretive air around him recently.
Assuming that she is happy or relatively happy with John and wants the marriage to be well, she has two choices: To trust or mistrust John. Trusting John would mean that the first thing that would come into her mind would be “Oh my lovely husband is preparing some surprise for our anniversary in a few months” and “how nice he finally met his cousin Tracy, he has been trying to arrange it for some time” or something similar. Now if John indeed is a loving husband and not cheating on her, this is an excellent choice. It makes Helen happy, relaxed, nice, friendly and loving which in turn makes John happy and affirms his choice of wife.
Let us suppose, now, that Helen is wrong in her trust, that John is not trustworthy, which in this case means either he is screwing around, having an affair or contemplating it. In this case, there are two distinct groups of probabilities. In the first group, John still wants to preserve the marriage and loves Helen, but maybe he is going through a midlife crisis, maybe their sex life had become a little boring or infrequent, maybe he is being tempted by a young secretary at the office coming on to him. In this case, Helen trusting him, being loving and nice is much more likely to make him feel guilty or think “I have this treasure at home, why would I risk this” then if she became irritated, angry, suspicious, turned a cold shoulder and had no interest in having sex with him.
So, trusting, even in this case were the trust is not merited would keep Helen happy and would be most likely to preserve the marriage, so it would be the best possible choice under the circumstances. The second group of probabilities is when John is not only cheating, but he no longer wants the relationship. Perhaps he no longer wants Helen, is in love with another person, he is sick of her, whatever, and he plans to leave her as soon as he builds up the courage to do it. In this case, nothing can be done, all is lost and no amount of detective work, suspicion and accusations will change that. The die is cast, but even in this case, a loving, trusting Helen would be more likely to tip him back than a cold, bitchy, filled with derision Helen.
If there is any ambivalence in the fate of the marriage according to John, what would be more likely to bring him back, if she really wants him? Love and trust that would shame him and make him think of what a gem he has, or suspicion, mistrust, accusations, coldness and anger? Take a guess!
What if Helen decides to mistrust John, check his pockets and cellphone, maybe hire a private detective to follow him, make snide remarks, be sarcastic, ask around or maybe even follow him herself? In the case where John is trustworthy, loves her and is just planning a surprise, mistrusting and mistreating him would be a horrible choice. It would make both of them miserable.
In the first group of probabilities where John is untrustworthy, where there is cheating or contemplation of cheating but where John is in no way considering leaving her, obviously mistrusting him with all that this would mean would be a bad choice because it would make it worse for her, since she would close her heart to him and suffer, worse for him since he would have an angry and cold bitch at home, worse for the survival of the marriage because it could drive him to an alternative, being unhappy at home. In the case where the marriage is doomed, mistrust and conflict would do nothing beneficial to save it, maybe just accelerate the inevitable.
Since John and Helen are a theoretical couple, if we allocate a statistical 50% to each possibility, just for the sake of the argument since we are talking about random, statistically diverse people, what do we see? The balance sheet of trust versus mistrust:
CHOICE A: HELEN TRUSTS JOHN
CHOICE B: HELEN MISTRUSTS JOHN
John is trustworthy- 50% probability
John is untrustworthy- 50%probability divided into 2 distinct groups of probabilities:
2a. Not serious for the fate of the marriage, fling or midlife crisis, John loves her and wants his marriage- 25% probability and 2b. Marriage doomed, John in love with another or totally fed up with Helen and his marriage- 25% probability
CHOICE A-TRUST, PROBABILITY 1: 50% EXCELLENT CHOICE
CHOICE B-MISTRUST, PROBABILITY 1: 50% HORRIBLE CHOICE
CHOICE A-TRUST, PROBABILITY 2a: 25% BEST CHOICE
CHOICE B-MISTRUST, PROBABILITY 2a: 25% WORST CHOICE
CHOICE A-TRUST, PROBABILITY 2b: 25% DOOMED ANYWAY
CHOICE B-PROBABILITY 2b: 25% DOOMED ANYWAY
CHOICE A-TRUST: 75% BEST CHOICE, 25% DOOMED
CHOICE B-MISTRUST: 75% WORST CHOICE, 25% DOOMED
So, if you trust you face a 50% probability of doing great, a 25% probability of it being more likely to do great and a 25% possibility of doom, but with a little less suffering. If you mistrust, you face a 75% probability of doom and a 25% probability where it is more likely to be doomed just by the fact that you didn’t trust and behaved like a cold bitch!
Try this yourself with any issue; business, relationships, commerce, government, art. Of course all of this applies when we have already made the choice to be married and stay married, to be business partners or whatever, if we want the relationship and we have exercised due diligence in choosing our partners. If you do not want to maintain the relationship and just want to get the most advantage from the breakup, then it pays to mistrust. Everything depends on your intention and the result that is most desirable to you. If you apply this balance sheet to any situation where the decision to relate has already been taken and circumstances require a decision on maintaining or withdrawing the trust you will find out that trust always pays astoundingly better than mistrust, as a minimum in 75% of the cases. Any casino, any gambler would love to play with these odds instead of against them. Why don’t we?
Are we so demented that we choose mistrust against trust for the crushing majority of people and occasions? Trust is so rare and mistrust so common. Absolute trust seems like an almost superhuman feat, such that we stand in awe when we see a person exhibiting it. It is the stuff of fairy tales and movies. Are we collectively so insane, so irrational that we choose mistrust over trust over and over again? Why would we make a choice with 75% probability of definite disaster and 25% of likely disaster, and not one with 75% probability of success and 25% probability of, at worst, similar outcome to the mistrusting option? Why would we be drawn to choices that do not serve us? Are we crazy, misguided, idiots or blind?
It seems that we are. But is dementia the reason why we would collectively be taught and teach our children to have the worst possible choice as the default choice? There must be some payback, some advantage in mistrust as our default choice. Otherwise we must conclude that every single person we know is insane. Well, there is a precious bonus that comes with the choice of perpetual mistrust, a gift so valuable that it leads to choose the worst possible choice on the vast majority of occasions. Because only if we choose to mistrust everything and anybody on the slightest provocation, even the people that we have chosen to partner with in whichever function, only then can we proudly claim “I ALWAYS KNEW IT HE WAS A RAT”! The entitlement to this declaration which cheapens and defiles every good memory is our big bonus, the thirty pieces of silver for a life of mistrust; confirmation of the mistrust itself, the ultimate of self-fulfilling prophecies. But sarcasm aside, the reason of our mistrust is that it sustains our collective paradoxes, allowing us to see our paradise as a horrible, dangerous, predatory place and all our brothers and sisters as well as ourselves as vile, selfish, horrible creatures. This way we can avoid happiness, pride, love, peace and live wretched, miserable lives in order to not compete or antagonize anyone, to be accepted and supported by society and to avoid social harm or death/ostracism which has substituted physical harm and death as our number one terror.
Trust is a muscle. Like all muscles it grows powerful with exercise. But our trust muscle has been shunned, imprisoned by our common beliefs, forced to starve and atrophy. Core instruction number three of our operating system needs to reverse this, so: Exercise due diligence on where you place your trust, but once you have chosen, trust your choices dogmatically: It mathematically pays on 75% of the cases. And make the choice to trust life, trust the universe and trust human nature. Dogmatically! Because trust is peace, but also because exercising our trust muscle provides additional gifts that are even beyond the scope of any imagination. Being able to trust actually gives us seemingly superhuman abilities. However incredulous this claim maybe, it has already been explained in the introduction, but let us now connect it to trust:
Every driver, sportsman, showman, every human being experiences what we often call “being in the zone”. A state of being where everything seems to happen effortlessly, by itself, involving no thought process. Examples of this are everywhere and every human experiences them. If you are a driver, you most likely have experienced times where you are in a discussion with a person next to you or on the phone, or maybe with yourself, or daydreaming and yet the car seems to drive itself perfectly; it takes you home, stops correctly at lights and intersections, navigates twisty roads and avoids pedestrians and other vehicles even better than you usually do. Yet you arrive home and remember nothing from the drive.
If you do any kind of sports from surfing to basketball to video games, you recognize those amazing moments in the zone where your body reacts in such a perfect way with zero hesitation and you observe yourself in awe performing better than your usual abilities, when you feel you can do no wrong and where decisions are taken automatically and instinctively with no thought process involved. Being in the zone is like being taken over by your superior self. The same applies to politicians, show people, everybody. The zone is a place of no doubt, no hesitation, no thought process; you watch yourself and there is no doubt inside you about your incredible charisma in the moment. And everybody else feels it too! And whatever it is you are facing, you just go for it and it seems the most natural thing in the world.
The “Zone” appears when you enter a moment of trust; when you trust your body to do the job and you stop worrying and thinking in general. When you delegate the task at hand to your subconscious mind and trust it fully to achieve the task, then you become your superior self because the subconscious mind is at least half a million times faster and more efficient than the conscious mind. When our subconscious minds are allowed to take over we acquire superhuman powers compared to when we try to use our conscious minds.
When we are in the zone, and I believe all of you have experienced this, all it takes is one little thought, one little doubt, one little fear to shatter the magic and become instantly clumsy, self-conscious and fumble everything, our control of the situation crashing half a million times lower purely by the loss of trust and the necessity to put our conscious minds in control. Thinking is slow, trustingly obeying our best habits engraved all over our bodies and stored safely in our subconscious takes us supersonic.
Since every lamp lights brighter in the center, our trust muscle provides the most benefit if we trust the divine and its creation first which engulf us and are us, ourselves next, and the whole of humanity third. Trusting ourselves brings us power, trusting humanity as a whole and the people we meet brings us love, trusting what is brings us happiness, trusting our choices brings us pride and self-love.
The next most important core instruction of our main kernel would need to give direction and guidance to every other piece of code we choose. Every other belief that we must choose and choose to trust in order to define a compass that would accurately guide the many levels of structure of our belief system that needs to be built on top of the core. Since we acknowledge choice as the first instruction, every belief built in or added should be consciously rather than arbitrarily chosen, but how do you choose? Using which criteria?
CHOOSE TO TRUST AND TRUST YOUR CHOICE!
SINCE ALL TRUTH IS ARBITRARY AND SERVES A PURPOSE, AND ANYTHING I BELIEVE NOW MAYBE DIFFERENT FROM WHAT I BELIEVED IN THE PAST AND MAY CHANGE IN THE FUTURE, WHY SHOULD MY TRUTH NOT SERVE THE HIGHEST POSSIBLE PURPOSE: HAPPINESS? IF SOMETHING DOES NOT SERVE MY HAPPINESS, IT IS NOT TRUE. Truth has been since the beginning of recorded history the most debated subject not only in psychology but in every aspect of human existence. The philosophical theories on truth are practically infinite, and although the most accepted ones are divided into many different schools of thought, each and every thinker even within any school of thought disagrees in something with the ones using a similar approach.
What most of them agree on, however, is that truth is arbitrary, that it has a strong element of expediency, meaning that it serves a purpose. For some this purpose is survival and interpretation of the environment, for Nietzsche the purpose is power, which he considers the most valuable thing, for others the purpose is adaptation to and acceptance by the social environment.
If you are a Palestinian, it serves you to believe that Israelis are horrible intruders to your homeland whereas it serves an Israeli to believe that you are reclaiming your homeland which you were persecuted from. Their respective views help them to be in tune with their families and social circles and to justify and feel good about their choices. It also serves both of them in feeling victims rather than perpetrators, a very useful perception point in the paradoxical competition of who is the most miserable and mistreated. Since pride is prohibited and horribly judged, sympathy and pity are the remaining highest valued commodities. All truths serve the believer’s purpose; it serves the employee to believe he deserves more than he is given by the employer and it serves the employer to believe that he is giving more than the employee deserves. Whose truth is true? Every truth serves a purpose even if this purpose is denial of objective realities. What is an objective reality? Anything measurable or quantifiable in a consistent way. And about anything measurable or quantifiable, all one needs to do is to just get the most precise and reliable data they can. Scientists dispute all the time other scientist’s data anyway, citing mistrust in the testing methods, fraud, incompleteness of data etc., but one can navigate these issues and judge measured and quantifiable data in a way that provides them with information reliable and precise enough for the decision making necessary for their purposes.
If for example the data published for the top speed and mileage of a car you are interested to buy is disputed and believed to be, say, 30% worse than the manufacturer’s data, if the lowest numbers are still good enough for you, you don’t care; both truths lead you to the same decision. The real issue of truth arises about the over 95% of all beliefs that are not quantifiable like “is there life after death”, “does my wife love me”, “is the ego destructive”, “is eating meat good for me”, “does the energy world exist”, “am I a good singer”, “am I good enough” or “is Jesus the son of god” and every other conceptual truth that we encounter in our lives, the sum of which define what we feel and think, how we react and who we are. Instead of embracing truths that serve many different purposes, most of them not conscious, truths that may change through change of social environment, age, trauma, experience, change of circumstances etc. why not pick from the beginning truths that serve my happiness, obviously the only viable ultimate purpose of life, the only goal that is an end by itself?
If you are given a responsibility, does it serves your happiness and your success to believe that you are capable of fulfilling it or not? If you enjoy singing, does it serves your purpose to believe that you are a good singer, or does it serve your happiness to believe that you are horrible and therefore never even try? Does it serve your happiness to believe that you are attractive or ugly and disgusting? And which perception points serves you in actually getting a partner? Aren’t confident people more attractive? How many beliefs do you have that you have never challenged, and are just there, arbitrarily?
Our belief system is comprised of millions of beliefs, and it is practically and realistically impossible to even know what all of them are, let alone consciously reconsider each one in the duration of a lifetime, but the simple universal filter of whether they serve our happiness or not actually makes this a viable possibility. Each belief is interconnected in a labyrinthine web of other beliefs that support it, so any belief that passes through the filter of happiness affects a multitude of other affiliated beliefs. In this manner, by the time the main kernel of your new OS is successfully and firmly engraved, installed and operational, the majority of the beliefs connected with the previous, paradoxical operating system will have shifted. Now, under our compass and specific filter for beliefs, let us choose the first belief:
EVERYTHING WANTS TO BE ONE WITH, AND THE BIGGEST PAIN IS CAUSED BY BEING ALONE, DIFFERENT, WHEREAS THE BEST FEELING IS THAT OF BELONGING, OF BEING ONE WITH OTHERS, THE SAME. PARADOXICALLY, WE STRIVE TO BE DIFFERENT, SPECIAL AND SUFFER FROM THE BELIEF THAT WE ACTUALLY ARE. WHAT ABOUT BEING HAPPY FOR BEING THE SAME? Everything we love is everything that we feel one with. We love our family because we are the same genetically, culturally, we share the same experiences, the same stories. Being different in some way sometimes carries stigma and sometimes carries admiration. Our difference make us at one moment better than others and other moments worse than others, depending on our beliefs about the rest of humankind at the moment. Whoever has ever hurt us or is hurting us right now is identical to us, a human being just wanting to love, to be one with and is only hurting us because they have been hurt in turn or feel threatened by us. Just feel this person; if they were them, how would I need to feel in order to react in this way? Then trust that this is so and act accordingly.
Trusting dogmatically that every single person we meet is identical to us inside, regardless of what they look like on the outside, and if they are acting in aggression it just means they are angry, frustrated, fed up about something or afraid, just like us. You want to try this to the extreme? What about the archetype of all evil, the devil himself? Can you bear with me enough to hear a story?
LOVING THE DEVIL:
On one desolate winter day, a creature was born that was so horrible, ugly and disgusting that even its own mother was terrified when she first set eyes on it, so she abandoned it in the forest in the snow and ran, never looking back. The baby creature, full of fangs, spikes and reptile skin was tough, so it managed to survive against all odds, living off roots and leaves until it was strong enough to wander further than its hiding place and explore the world. Any animal, reptile or bird that it encountered was so terrified at the site of the little horrendous creature that they either screamed and ran away or attacked it viciously. The wretched creature could not understand why no one wanted to be with him, nobody wanted to play with him. It learned to run from attacks but could not, for the life of him, give up on trying to be one with something or somebody, because everything, absolutely everything wants to be one with, to love and be loved.
One day, he met a little fluffy rabbit that was bouncing around playfully and timidly approached it, because it looked really cool and funny. Sure enough, the rabbit freaked out and started to run away like every other animal, and the devil creature started running after it screeching, trying to say “wait, I just want to play with you, I am not going to hurt you, why is everybody either afraid or attack me”, but the rabbit was running for dear life. The creature kept running after it, desperately trying to make it understand, but to no avail. At one moment, while the rabbit changed direction abruptly for the umpteenth time, the creature tried to grab it and its claw went right through it. The rabbit stopped and was no longer running; it twitched a couple of times and then stopped moving. The creature, panting from exhaustion, tried to lick the rabbit, show it that it was a friend, but the rabbit did not respond.
After a while, the creature started eating the rabbit, felt the warm blood in his throat and tasted the sweet feeling of being one with something outside itself. From then on, it started hunting when another being ran away and fighting back when attacked. It never again ran away scared, and never again accepted that any other would escape him: deprived of being one with through love, it chose the only way possible to be one with by devouring, dominating, subjugating and assimilating.
Close your eyes and imagine for a moment what your life would be like if you were born like that; wouldn’t you be hurt, angry, perplexed, believing that it is impossible for anything to want to be with you voluntarily? Think what kind of life and beliefs are held by big, tattooed, scarred bullies in prison, Adolf Hitler or that father that kept his daughter locked in the basement for decades, what these people must feel. The devil lives in hell, a private, personal hell. Hell is an archetype of suffering, and as an archetype it represents the absolute, theoretical “most” of something. In any hell you can imagine, a place of intense torture, it is always a little better if there is someone there suffering with you. If somebody is in the most horrible jail, even a tap from the other side of the wall is a relief; at least there is somebody there sharing something with you. Hell is a place where you are alone, because if you are not, it is a little better and thus not absolute hell.
The people killing and torturing the most are those that are so alone and desperately sunk in a belief that no one can love them that they want to show to their loved ones and the world “see how much I am hurting” and force others to be one with them, to feel how they feel.
Why does this belief serve you? Because it allows you to escape from your personal hell every time you feel maligned, betrayed, misunderstood, different, alone. Whatever your nationality is, it is mathematically certain that your oneness with your compatriots has been derived not only through love, but through conquering, assimilating, dominating, annexing and subjugating. Each and every country in the world is comprised of endless tribes, cities, regions, ethnicities, cultures and fiefdoms that were absorbed by the strongest.
When countries can become one with through treaties and voluntary union they do, since it is the best and most economical option, but most often they subjugate others purely because they are afraid that they would be betrayed and subjugated in turn. Even in loving relationships each one tries to dominate, mistrusting the other’s intentions lest they be dominated instead. If you fully believe and thus assume that everybody is identical to you and thus well-intentioned if only they could trust you, and if they are behaving badly towards you is because they are hurt, angry and afraid, then you can understand them and no longer live in a world of opponents but in a world of allies.
If we fully believe that each and every human being is identical and each person’s behavior is a result of their belief system which determines their thoughts and their emotions just like us, we no longer need to view the world as a horrible, dangerous, predatory place where every human being is vile and dangerous. We no longer need to live in a world that is not as it should be, populated by animals and humans who are not at all as they should be, since they wish to betray us, abuse us, dominate us devour us, hurt us. Everything just becomes a creature like us, that wants to be one with like all others, just does not know how and is afraid of the consequences if left undefended and vulnerable. This does not mean that we no longer exercise due diligence, that we no longer protect ourselves, that we allow other beings to devour us, but it means that we no longer suffer, feel like victims seething with anger and disappointment at everybody around us.
The most important belief that serves our happiness: We are all identical. And our choices, not genetics, environment, culture or upbringing determine our difference, the expressions of our souls. And thus we can feel comfort in not being different, alone, and also pride at the differences that our choices give us, our chosen identities and actions. This core belief, part of the main kernel of our operating system serves us to not feel alone, misunderstood and different.
The next one makes us powerful:
THESE VOICES ARE NOT MY FRIENDS. ONLY THE VOICES THAT TELL ME WHO I CAN BE AND WHAT I CAN DO ARE MY FRIENDS. ONLY THOSE VOICES SERVE MY HAPPINESS.
Henry Ford used to say “If you think you can, and if you think you cannot, you are right!” Because if you think you can, you will try until you manage, and if you think you cannot you will quit at the first difficulties or never even try. So you will be right in either case. Another self-fulfilling prophecy where the bonus of mistrusting yourself and failing is again the right to be able to say “I always knew it I was no good”. Enjoy your bitter prize! Winston Churchill, another great achiever, said “Success is tumbling from failure to failure with no loss of enthusiasm”, so you can only succeed in anything if you fully trust that you can succeed. You cannot fail, you can only quit, and the moment the thought crosses your mind that you might not be capable you are already increasing the probability of your eventual quitting multifold.
What about delusion? What if this belief makes you think “I will not listen to the voices that tell me that I cannot perform brain surgery at the age of twelve, I shall ignore them because they are not my friends”? Needing to study and train to be capable of many complicated things, needing to have the qualifications and experience necessary for a task does not mean you cannot do it. It just means that you must want it enough to show intention and invest in the particular achievement. It is different from thinking that you are not clever or capable enough to ever manage the task. This belief empowers you and the more you engrave and obey this instruction you will be surprising yourself about the amazing things that you CAN do and the amazing person that you become. So stop listening to voices that tell you what you cannot do, whether they are from inside you or from others; they are wrong!
And now, it is time to empower ourselves regarding how well we are doing and the ups and downs of life:
OUR LIVES ARE BUILT AROUND OUR INTENTIONS, MANY EXTREMELY SHORT TERM AND EASILY EXECUTED, OTHERS MEDIUM TERM, MORE DIFFICULT TO MAINTAIN, AND LONG TERM INTENTIONS THAT, FOR MOST PEOPLE, ARE ALMOST IMPOSSIBLE TO MAINTAIN. The more long term an intention is, the more we run the risk of experiencing at some point internal conflict that makes us abandon them. To understand this better let us examine intentions, the biggest driving force behind our actions:
INTENTIONS: Category 1: Everyday Forever Intentions
I have the intention to wake up at 7:30, so I set up three alarm clocks to make sure (but most of the time I wake up anyway because the intention has been engraved on the biological clock in my subconscious). I have the intention to make coffee, wash, brush my teeth and dress and to be at work on time each working day (all engraved on the subconscious, the body is driven to perform those routine intentions, so they are almost always fulfilled and only on extraordinary circumstances). I also want to be polite, so every time somebody says thank you I say “you are welcome” and automatically say good morning to the people I know that I meet, I wish to be civilized so I do not spit or pee on the floor and do not throw garbage in the street nor do I regurgitate food I do not like on my plate (but it is anyway almost impossible for me to do any of these things because they are by now so deeply engraved that I would feel horrible doing them).
All of the above is just a drop in the ocean of intentions and actions that are basically forever and dominate a huge percentage of our everyday lives. They are intentions that have resorted in deep engravings that make them happen practically on autopilot, unchallenged and undebated except on special occasions where circumstances overshadow their pervading priority. They are much easier to fulfill than not; action and expenditure of energy is easier than inaction and more economical and efficient because the expenditure of energy in internal conflict is way higher.
But what was it like when we were all children, when all these things we do automatically and easily today were nightmares for our parents and for us? How many rewards and punishments and for how many years did it take for us to engrave and how dictatorial did it feel when you were a child or a teenager? But when our parents, our teachers and society imposed thousands of rules upon us in order for us to function well in life and society it was “you will do this, no matter what!”
No way will you keep spitting your food out! In addition, you will not jump from the 5th floor, you will not defecate in front of everybody in the street and then play with it, you will wash, you will not throw your dish to the floor, you will not run off into the street without looking, you will not stab your playmates or spray water all over electrical appliances, NO MATTER WHAT!
None of these things feel like impositions today, they have become things we want to observe and we teach our children with equal determination, because they are good for us. It worked! So how about making the choice, of our own free will, to start utilizing the same techniques to turn behaviors that do not serve your happiness into ones that do, that are automatic and therefore easy instead of an eternal struggle?
What about treating addictions, self-destructive practices etc. through fully engraved automatic aversion to them? It works, but it requires the same kind of insistence that our parents used on us, but this time in full consciousness that we are engraving our own chosen intentions, not somebody else’s. It is our choice. We can change damaging automatic reactions of being hurt, of being angry, bad losers, insensitive and everything else that happens to us that we regret. We validate our intentions by achieving the attitude that this is my intention, my choice and it will happen no matter what, and I will keep trying forever and never give up!
INTENTIONS: Category 2: Transitory Occasional Intentions
A second category of intentions are transitory, occasional and temporary like I will diet, go to the gym, take care of my health, visit my mom, keep in contact with dear friends, keep my accounts and my taxes in order, not take my partner for granted, not allow my work to fall back, keep my car serviced, pay my bills on time and every other intention that we make at different moments of our lives, because we choose and we know they are good for us.
We make choices and declare our intention to ourselves and others often and on a whim, but most of us end up constantly disappointing ourselves, renewing our intentions and failing again. The result again is cognitive dissonance, distress, self-deprecation and judgment as well as the accumulation of deep mistrust towards ourselves. These intentions are chosen under specific emotional and psychological states, and when the emotional state is absent, they fall apart.
Sometimes keeping these intentions seems easy, but they can equally easily fall to the sidelines and start becoming frustrating burdens. The trick with these kinds of intentions is to think consciously before committing to them, making sure there are not too many things at the same time, even choose just one if necessary and then make sure they happen, no matter what! This way we can start trusting ourselves and our intentions instead of failing repeatedly in this or that intention.
INTENTIONS: Category 3: Long Term, Life defining Intentions
Long term intentions such as relationship, studying or career intentions require commitment that does not waiver according to our psychological or emotional state and remain constantly at high levels of priority. If you commit to a marriage, to a University degree, to a partnership, to a business plan etc. extended lack of firm intention to act accordingly can destroy all the investment and effort already put in and be extremely self-destructive. Although these major, long term intentions were undertaken with great consciousness and represent the pinnacle of our conscious choice, being life defining, they start enthusiastically and appear not just easy but also highly interesting and pleasurable, but can become mind-blowingly difficult and frustrating in a gradual, inexorable way.
Here it is important to be able to re-evaluate and make sure that these choices still serve our main purpose, to be happy. They need a firm intention and need to happen, no matter what, IF we can consciously say that they are decisions that we would remake today and not self-inflicted punishment and entrapment that we regret choosing but “it is too late now”.
Our intention should not be used lightly, in order to avoid traps, and it should be used with caution; changing our minds constantly may seem like freedom but it does not make us free to make long term choices, and it does not help us trust ourselves and our choices. Intention is what WILL happen, no matter what, and if that is not the case we should relinquish them instead of pretending that we still hold them. This is how we will gain self-respect and trust. By making intentions that we mean and are willing to do anything it takes to fulfill and no others. THE CHOICE TO HAVE NO CHOICE BUT TO KEEP OUR COMMITMENTS IS THE ULTIMATE POWER. It allows to achieve things that require continuity and perseverance.
Now we need a way to measure how well we are doing:
WE CONSTANTLY OBSESS AND WORRY ABOUT OUR POSITION: OUR POSITION SOCIALLY, IN OUR BUSINESS, IN OUR ROMANTIC PURSUITS, IN HEALTH, SPORTS, IN LIFE. BUT POSITION ALWAYS BRINGS US MISERY AND NOT ALWAYS DEPENDS PURELY ON US, MAKING US POWERLESS AND VICTIMS ONCE MORE. Position, however means nothing; if one person is right outside New York but is heading away towards Boston, and another person is just leaving Boston but heading towards New York, who is closest to New York? The person a couple of miles away or the person over two hundred miles away? The answer is surprisingly far from our default, because the person 200 or a million miles away, if they maintain their direction will eventually get to New York so they are closer, whereas the person heading away from New York will never get there, so they are the farthest! This example can be adapted to anything: if you weigh 100 kgs, down from 120, dieting and exercising wanting to get to 80, you may be 20kgs away, but you are way more likely to reach your weight target than if you weigh 90 kgs but bingeing on food and having no intention to diet or exercise, your weight direction pointing upwards.
In addition, when you weigh 100 after losing 20kilos you feel thin, whereas if you weigh 120 after gaining 10 kilos you feel fat. The examples are endless, feeling rich after a raise at a fraction of the salary that you would feel poor at after a demotion, being brilliant and top of your class in University but going down in the last year whereas the steady but unspectacular student ending up with better grades, being born with a talent that you abandon etc. etc..
Position either gives you grief at how bad it is or gives you anxiety for losing it if you feel good about it. Either way you feel powerless and afraid that you may never reach your goals. Direction on the other hand gives you power, because regardless of what position you are in, you can choose to focus your direction, your intentions and your resources to where you want to go and then, like in yoga where you stretch your body millimeters every day until you reach the floor, you move inexorably towards your chosen direction. Every time that because of either external circumstances or your own “failings” you lose position, merely by shifting yourself back on your path towards your goals you are closer than ever.
Worrying, accusing yourself and others is just an excuse to do nothing: I was sober but I got carried away and drank yesterday at the party so I am an alcoholic again, I am weak, horrible etc. serves nothing. Getting back on the wagon the next day does! Every time you worry about your position in anything, you need to remind yourself and engrave the belief that it is not about the position, it is about the direction. Position is meaningless, direction makes you powerful, depends on no one and nothing besides your own choices. Position can make you feel momentarily happy but soon takes on the anxiety of losing it as well as endless frustration about not being in a desirable one; direction only brings you pride.
So now we need an instruction, a belief to guide us in our direction:
STRONG WORDS INDEED, BUT ACTUALLY NECESSARILY SO. WE ARE SO RIDDLED WITH BELIEFS ABOUT OUR OBLIGATIONS AND DUTIES, ALL THESE THINGS THAT WE MUST DO IN ORDER TO BE CONSIDERED BY OTHERS AND BY OURSELVES AS DOING THE RIGHT THING, SO OUR HAPPINESS BECOMES OF THE LOWEST PRIORITY. Our beliefs about our obligations, duties and the correct way of behaving and living our lives make the concept of sacrificing ourselves and suffering our default priority. Examples of how we prioritize in a way beyond even the dogmatic all the “shoulds” hoisted upon us by our families and our general social environment abound: “what would people think?”, “I could never live with myself if I put my 80 year old senile mother in a home”, “could never do this to her”, gain a taboo kind of power over us to the point where we cannot even contemplate an alternative.
It ranges from the life changing important to the trivial. From sacrificing careers, relationships and opportunities to please others to organizing our lives prioritizing our social obligations rather than our happiness. We cannot take that trip to Hawaii because we need to attend the funeral of Uncle Joe, we need to postpone our wedding because it would be inappropriate with Aunt Sarah in mourning; we need to be sad when we really want to be happy.
These taboos are so powerful that they take over everything and they work through invoking guilt and shame, the central tools of control of any established ideology. But shame and guilt just make us suffer and lead us to sacrifice, which, albeit an honorable and desirable pursuit for most current ideologies, is entirely contradictory to happiness. Shame and guilt also allow us to stay in misery by serving as a fine, a penalty for the shameful acts. If you confess every Sunday and do penance, and if you feel guilty and ashamed if you do it again, then you can “sin” as much as you like next week because you have paid and have been absolved, so you will just pay again and again.
And what about sacrificing yourself for other people or for their beliefs because you want to, because you love them. Don’t we all want to be one with, to love and be loved? Doesn’t it serve my happiness to make other people happy if I want to be one with them, to feel them, to make them happy? Well, a simple test will suffice to find out our motivation for things: If I can say no, and actually do say no on occasion, then whatever action this concerns does not constitute a sacrifice, but if I cannot even contemplate saying no and I justify it to myself by “but I want to”, then I have a clear sign that I am taboo driven and commanded. In order to fight against the most dominating of beliefs, taboos, that have physical power over us to an extreme degree, then we need to fight in an extreme way: I don’t give a flying fuck about what people think or what I am supposed to do, I don’t give a flying fuck about what doesn’t serve my happiness.
A dear friend of my wife has been raised and bred with the obligation to always take care of her mentally disabled brother during her whole life and especially when her parents pass away. Her beliefs are so strong that she would never contemplate moving to another country or a faraway area, restricting her relationships, job opportunities, vision for life and burdening her with a financial and practical burden for life, an unpayable debt. Despite living in a country with an ultra-developed social care system, where her brother could get good professional care, she cannot even imagined herself believing that she can be free of this heavy burden purely by choosing so, because it would mean that she is a bad sister, bad daughter, a bad person! Irrespective of the fact that she never chose this obligation, she was raised and indoctrinated into it.
In another case, a sixty year old woman taking care of her elderly mother for 20 years who wanted to move to a different area after her divorce, could not contemplate giving that responsibility to her brother and sister who had moved away decades ago, purely by not even considering that they had an obligation to stay. The woman would not even consider moving her elderly mother to the new area because she would not like the change, or put her in a home, although the financial means were there, because it would make her mother feel abandoned. Because of guilt and shame we sacrifice not only ourselves but also our families and friends which have no say in the matter. A whole family with three children was devastated for years by taking care at home of a disabled sister with the body of an adult and the comprehension of a one year old, because the mother would not hear anything about putting her in a specialized care home. It was not the mother’s love for her daughter that caused her to impose a miserable life on herself, her husband and her other young children, but her belief system. When the dysfunction of the family became too toxic and changed her mind, the retarded daughter proved to be much happier being taken care of by professionals who could handle her, rather than feeling the disgruntlement and desperation of her family at her antics.
Any light shines brighter in its core, and love should be strongest for ourselves, then for our loved ones, then for the rest of the world, because if we do not love ourselves our love for others is fake and hollow. If your priority is your happiness, don’t give a fuck about anything or anybody that does not make you happy.
Next we need a belief to counter the main cause of failure in anything: Disappointment and disillusionment, the main catalysts for quitting and thus never actually succeeding:
YOU CAN NEVER FAIL, YOU CAN ONLY QUIT. IF YOU DO NOT QUIT AND KEEP TRYING YOU ARE ALWAYS GOING TOWARDS SUCCESS, AND SINCE IT IS NOT ABOUT THE POSITION BUT ABOUT THE DIRECTION YOU ARE THE CLOSEST POSSIBLE TO SUCCEEDING. WE OFTEN GET DISAPPOINTED ABOUT FORMING A GREAT RELATIONSHIP, FINDING OUR SOULMATE, ACHIEVING SOMETHING, FINDING HAPPINESS, FINDING ANSWERS, WHATEVER AND GIVE UP ON LOOKING, DECIDING THAT WHAT WE ARE LOOKING FOR DOES NOT EXIST OR IS NOT POSSIBLE FOR US. If you are looking for the proverbial needle in the haystack and look through all the straw it is very likely that you will give up, either by believing that there is no needle there or that it is impossible for you to find it. If however you are GUARANTEED that the needle is there, you will eventually find it.
Similarly, if you are absolutely sure that your keys are in the bedroom, even if they have slid in an invisible place such as under the sheets on the sides of the mattress, you will not stop until you find it; you will even take every single item out until you do find it. However if a doubt creeps into your mind, maybe you left them somewhere else, maybe you dropped them in the street, this doubt reduces your probability of finding them exponentially: the stronger the doubt, the more unlikely you are to find your keys because you will be splitting your search into a far wider area and disappointment is likely to start gnawing at you.
Although happiness is supposed to be everybody’s primary goal, very few people in the world actually achieve it, even for short periods. The most important reason for this failing, is that the majority of people on earth believe and tell themselves and others that happiness does not exist, that it is just transitory moments that you cannot invoke but just happen by themselves, that happiness is an illusion, that it is not even desirable for responsible human beings, that if you are happy all the time you are an idiot or insensitive. Nobody can be happy all the time, they declare.
How can you find happiness if you are not sure it exists, how can you find inspiration, fulfillment, a soul mate, a job that you enjoy if you do not trust that they exist for you?
This extends to everything; when your loved one does something that hurts you, if you believe there can be no excuse, no reason other than they want to hurt you, you will not find one. If you trust that everybody is identical and just want to be one with, like you, like everything, then your eyes open to understand why and how people are driven to react in certain ways. Thomas Edison, one of the greatest inventors of humanity managed to make a light bulb lasting thousands of hours due to his conviction that it was possible as well his perseverance; the electric light bulb already existed for almost 80 years already and many inventors had tried to make it last to no avail, all of them eventually quitting. Edison did not quit, he conducted thousands of trials and experiments until he got it right. His conviction about what was possible led him to invent the stock ticker, the quadruple telegraph machine, the phonograph, the movie projector, the fluoroscope and the modern AC electrical grid (despite taking a wrong direction and trying with DC current initially). Elon Musk made an all-electric car, a solar roof, a reusable rocket and is declaring that he will colonize Mars, because he is absolutely sure that these things are possible!
The most important place, however, where trust that something exists is with happiness itself; Happiness is the feeling (arising from and supported by belief like all feelings and thoughts) that everything is exactly, deliciously as it should be. How can we maintain this belief in the face of all the things that happen around us that suggest otherwise and convince us that we live in a horrible, predatory world such as inequality, racism, discrimination? What if you also list violence, crime, war, exploitation, rape, oppression, corruption, pollution etc.? Simply by trusting that all of these are as deliciously as they should be, and just looking for the why. You cannot find something that is hard to find unless you fully believe and trust that it is there. Let us take a look into the deficiencies of humanity, the issues in our world and the human civilization that make it not as it should be:
If you ask people about what is wrong with humans and our civilization, depending on who you ask, you will hear complaints about authoritative and corrupt governments, insufficient or unequal health care, social care, education, people’s rights abuses, big business and conglomerates, lack of freedom of press, war, violence, crime, slavery, human trafficking, sexual abuse, rape, pornography, prostitution, child abuse, pollution, lying, verbal and emotional abuse, violence against women, destruction of the environment, police brutality, racism, discrimination, oppression, wealth inequality, lack of transparency, media and information suppression, genetically modified organisms (GMO’s), fanaticism, factory farming, animal experiments, abuse of animals, child labor, fascism and much, much more. How can things such as rape be deliciously as they should be?
Well, you cannot find something that is hard to find unless you are absolutely sure it is there, but when you are sure, the answers are obvious and undeniable.
All of the above and everything else you can think of, fall under two distinct categories: CHOICE and EVOLUTION. Evolution gets rid of 70-80% of anything you can think of and Choice gets rid of the rest of all things that you believe are not as they should be.
Recorded human history is no more than 5,000 years old and the totality of human civilization from ape like hunter scavengers is no more than 10,000 years old. The very concepts of universal or free healthcare, universal, free and compulsory education for children, social care, human rights, women’s rights, animal rights, freedom of speech, environmental protection etc. did not even exist as concepts just 150 or 200 years ago. Throughout history, slavery was legal and accepted, poor people had zero rights, the right to rape and pillage was the accepted way for armies to be paid, feudal lords had legal right to “Privilegium Protogamie, Prima Notte, Droit de Seigneur, Lus Prime Noctis, Derecho de Pechada etc.” whereby they had the god given right to deflower any virgin before her husband, courts judged in an arbitrary fashion and had no need to answer to the public about their decisions, corruption was a given, property rights were rudimentary.
In addition, it was not until the second half of the twentieth century that pollution was considered a bad thing, in the most developed of countries. Just a few decades ago anyone that spoke about the environment was considered an anarchist or a hippie, a man had the legal right to beat his wife in most cultures in the world, and social care was a newfangled concept. Rights of women, rights of minorities, rights of animals were jokes. Beating your child to put sense into it was considered the most accepted educational method even in the most advanced countries less than a hundred years ago.
Nowadays there is not a country in the world that I could find that does not have some kind of social care, free education and health for the poor and no world leader that can afford to disregard the environment. Within my lifetime we progressed from guiltlessly dumping cans and garbage out of the window of the car to people having to carry plastic bags to scoop their dog’s shit from the ground.
We have also progressed to everybody and everything having protected rights in over 95% of the world, including the right to vote, to free speech, to social care, pensions etc. So we are complaining about the state of the world because the progress is not fast enough!
Throughout human history, every single person would experience personally multiple wars and daily violent crime, without recourse to any kind of protection. We have progressed from an average life expectancy at birth of 20-40 years until 1900 that rose to 48 by the year 1950. Today the world average is 68 years with the majority of our planet’s population enjoying between 70-80 years. Infant mortality rates were 180 per 1000 in Africa between 1950 and 1955 and 60 per 1000 for the most developed nations. Today it is 78 for Africa and about 3 per 1000 births for developed nations. The world average was 157 deaths per 1000 births just sixty years ago and is now 56, projected to drop to 22 within the next 30 years.
How much faster should we have evolved from predatory animals living everyday violence and abuse to today? Today less than a third of the population of the earth lives in some kind of authoritative regime whereas just two hundred years ago practically every single regime in the world was authoritative. The French Revolution is only 200 years old and the fabled Athenian democracy in ancient Greece only involved 10% of the population of Athens at the time, the rest were slaves and women who had no say in anything and the same applied to the Roman Republic. The evolution of humanity is spectacular and divine; however, in order to support our universal paradoxes we refuse to see it, complaining about everything and disgusted by the human race. Are we idiots? The equivalent would be a teenager who was a drug taking delinquent at 15, skipping and flunking school, unwashed and constantly negative, aggressive and defiant and at 16 is third in his class, polite, clean, and full of activities and achievements who is constantly criticized by his exasperated parents for not being first in his class and valedictorian! How good is good enough? Slavery did not start being abolished except for brief historical occurrences until the 18th century and it was not a crime in Nigeria before 2003. Today slavery is de jure illegal in every single country in the world.
Today there is less poverty, less discrimination, less racism, less corruption, less war, less violence, less oppression, less rape, more freedom, more education, better health, more rights, and more social care than any time in human history. We complain about the lack of access to clean water, good education etc. in many places in the world today, and we forget that nobody had any of these benefits anywhere in the world until very recently, unless they were the few privileged ones, the rulers, the titled and the ultra-rich. The historical and statistical data fully confirms this, yet we choose to ignore reality and view everything with judgment, dissatisfaction, anger and disgust. How can everything be exactly as it should be, if everything is wrong?
The worldwide standard of living has increased exponentially and only a tiny minority in the world do not enjoy what the king of France could not enjoy just a few centuries ago: Teeth, toilets, antibiotics, inoculation, connection and communication with the whole world and so much more that we take for granted. Is it ok that a part of the world still lacks the advantages of many of the gifts of human civilization? Is it ok that there is still crime, abuse, rape, oppression? Of course not, and we are becoming one with at a phenomenal pace. And we should keep improving and evolving in our path towards the divine, but we should not be made to feel guilty and ashamed for ourselves personally and humanity as a race for not having done well enough. How fast should we have evolved?
Everything is exactly as it should be, because this is the stage of human evolution that we find ourselves in. Our awareness of things that are not ok and need our attention to improve is our evolution, because in the past nobody even cared. Should we not be proud of ourselves and should we not be congratulating humanity for its achievements rather than maligning ourselves? A pat in the back does not mean that we will become complacent and stop improving, because this is our destiny and inevitable. A pat on our collective backs as humanity purely means that we start governing and guiding ourselves not only with the stick, punishment through judgment, shame, anxiety, anger and guilt but also with the carrot, rewards such as pride, happiness, fun, celebrations, congratulations, peace.
The rest of the “horribleness” of human civilization, GMO’s, religious fanaticism, political, economic, cultural behaviors like circumcision, killing for fur, factory farming, use of animals for experiments on cosmetics, the burka, the caste system in India, child labor, overpopulation, different sanitary habits and customs or anything of the list of things you are enraged, dejected or disdainful about boils down to choice: Choice is the soul, and freedom of choice makes us who we are, and people should have choices: choices to support GMO’s versus insecticides poisoning the ground, choices to choose what they believe since one man’s fanaticism is another man’s passion and conviction, choices to choose by what moral rules we will live by, which economic system, which political or social system, choices about which parts of culture and the past to relinquish and when, choices on where to put our priorities, choices, choices.
Each ethnicity, country, area, neighborhood lives exactly as the majority wants and if you do not like the rules by which your society lives you can move to another place, but if there is no country in the world where you like the system, instead of being a serial complainer, work to devise and propose a better system. Stop pointing out problems, propose realistic solutions! We all have the governments we want and we change at the pace that the majority desires. If you were the ruler of the world, how would you combat overpopulation? By killing the excess or prohibiting births like in China? Would you force everybody to agree with you, to not research scientific areas that you are afraid of, live by your customs and morals?
Child labor was the way things were for the most of human history and children were asked to contribute to their family’s survival as best they could. Kids in farms always work in the fields and do chores, suddenly we are enraged because in very poor areas children still work? The majority of children in the world go to school and do little appreciable work, but there are also children that are not required to quit school and start working who make that choice by themselves. Who decides what is early enough? Our goody goody social fanaticism perhaps. In the developed countries having sex with a person below 18 years of age with their consent is a jailable offence called statutory rape, but throughout human history humans had sex as early as they physically could, and on average women would be married with multiple children long before they were 18. Mothers at 13, 14 or 15 years of age are the norm in most indigenous cultures and many parts of the world even today. Why are we outraged?
Simply because in order to maintain the paradox, our unique collective survival tool, we must be miserable, dissatisfied, ashamed of sexuality, humble, nobly sacrificing selfless beings, appalled at selfishness, sexuality and happiness. How else can we explain being so blind to humanity’s greatness and divinity? We want to impose our choices on others and they want to impose theirs on us, but really, things only change through gradual evolution and not imposition, laws and punishment. Examples in the Middle East and other areas in the world where authoritarian regimes were toppled by developed countries theoretically wanting to save people from abuse and violence, give them democracy and “free” them where the ensuing chaos and violence, many times worse than the authoritarian regime show that cultures in the area are scared of democracy because the social and cultural evolution is just not there yet.
We see developed countries closing down sweatshops in Asia because they use child labor, they do not have correct lighting, heating, seating and general working conditions or because they do not have a good overtime policy or social security and we celebrate the glory of our philanthropy and social consciousness. But often the whole area is devastated because the poor people in the area would rather work in sweatshop conditions and eat rather than be saved, jobless and starving.
Our moral indignation about other countries, other cultures, other ethnicities and other belief system is akin to the Holy Inquisition in the middle ages and the violent and compulsory proselytization of indigenous people by the colonialists. Everybody wants to save the world, but does the world need saving? Forcing a teenager to wear a tie makes him hate or be enslaved by the tie, rather than embrace it.
How hard is it to believe that the world is miraculously exactly as it should be? You cannot find something that is hard to find unless you are absolutely sure it is there, but the proof that human civilization is doing amazing strides of evolution is everywhere in our history and not hard to find at all. All Armageddon “the end is nigh” prophecies since the beginning of time have been proved wrong: Nuclear disaster did not happen, Aids has not ravaged humanity, we did not run out of oil, the ozone layer has not been depleted to the point of giving us all cancer, Big Brother does not command us all, viruses resistant to antibiotics have not caused a pandemic impossible to contain, the missing digits from the Year 2000 virus did not cause planes to fall. Should we not be aware of the dangers and take action to avert them? Of course, but we should not suffer constant fear at impending dooms and conspiracy theories and we should not be ashamed of who we are and our path as humans.
If in any situation you cannot find reasons why everything is exactly, deliciously as it should be, keep looking fully trusting that they are there. The why whatever happens is the best thing that could ever happen to you is the thing to find.
Next comes a filter, a compass that will help us find the right choices and beliefs for our happiness:
THE DIAGNOSIS IS IN EVERY FEELING, NOT JUST LOVE. WHEN AN ANSWER MAKES ME FEEL STRONGLY, I KNOW THAT THIS IS WHERE I SHOULD BE LOOKING. THE BEST SOLUTION, HOWEVER, SHOULD MAKE ME FEEL LOVE. FOR MYSELF, FOR OTHERS, FOR LIFE, FOR THE WORLD WE LIVE IN. Every time I ask someone (or myself) that has fucked up, “why on earth did you do that?”, the usual answer is: “it felt right at the time”. But what feels right is always dependent on our psychological state at the moment, and is fully defined by our beliefs at the time. And our beliefs may not only be completely disconnected from any physical reality but also damaging to our wellbeing.
Why did you call your boss an asshole? Because I believed he was picking on me and told myself that I do not want the job anyway. Why did you quit your studies? Because I believed I wasn’t capable enough to succeed and convinced myself that I was not interested. Why did you leave your car unlocked with your wallet in it? Because I believed I would be back in a minute and nothing would happen. All of these actions feel right at the time, but often just a few seconds, a few minutes, a few hours or days later they no longer feel right, regardless of our propensity to support them with fervor. It is obvious that using our minds and our unexamined and unconscious beliefs to guide our actions and reactions does not always serve us. Intuition and impulsiveness can at times lead to great things but reacting to twisted beliefs that create relevant moods and reactions is not intuition; it is automatic robotic reaction to one of our buttons being pushed.
And it is not just about our actions, it is also about how we decide what truth is, how we form the beliefs that work as instructions and define our thoughts, emotions and reactions. Again, what feels right is what often leads us to wrong conclusions: Nobody loves me, nobody cares for me, everybody is against me, I am useless, I am incapable, my partner must be cheating on me, they never loved me, everybody just wants to use me…they all feel right at the time and we are fully convinced they are true, making our decisions according to these temporary realities.
There is a much more reliable compass: our heart. The right answer is not the one that feels right, but the one that makes us feel the strongest connection, the strongest oneness, the most love. The deeper the emotion, the more correct the answer is. In this manner, our beliefs and our actions are based on perceptions that serve our happiness, rather than our anxiety, misery and isolation. After all, everything wants to be one with, it is a law that applies to all creatures, all species, all physical elements, everything. It is a universal law of nature that motivates everything that creates life and the physical and energetic universe, from our metabolism, reproduction and social behavior to geological formations to chemistry, astrophysics to the evolution of multicellular organisms.
Often people declare: “I trust only myself”, which actually means “I trust nothing”, because it is “ourselves” that screw us more comprehensively than anything or anyone else. How can we trust ourselves when all of us suffer from self-destructive tendencies? It is best to trust our hearts to guide us in navigating life, so the answer that feels right is a trap. Only the answer that opens our hearts and makes us feel deeply is the right answer, if happiness is our conscious purpose.
And now an instruction to give us untold and unimaginable power. The power to be able to correct any unsavory situation that we find ourselves in:
OUR MOST PASSIONATE PURSUIT IN LIFE IS FOR EVERYTHING TO BE SOMEONE ELSE’S FAULT. EVEN WHEN WE ACCEPT THAT SOMETHING IS OUR FAULT, THE DECLARATION IS FOLLOWED BY A “BUT” THAT ENSURES THAT IT IS ULTIMATELY NOT OUR FAULT. But if it is not our fault, if our problems and mishaps in relationships, jobs, endeavors etc. are not our fault, they do not depend on our actions but on other people or circumstance, we are powerless. If something is not our fault we are victims unable to prevent undesirable things from happening. Only if it is our fault we can change things, fix things, try different ways. If we take responsibility for everything that happens, we are powerful, because everything depends on us.
If my relationship is not working out, if it is my partner’s fault, there is nothing I can do. If my contribution and abilities are not recognized at work, if it is my boss’s or my colleagues fault, there is nothing I can do. Again, I am powerless. If accidents happen, if life does not work to my satisfaction, if it is society’s fault, the government’s fault, the system’s fault, I am weak and unable to change things, but if it is my fault, I can do something about it and have the life, the relationship and the career I want.
If people do not understand me, if they do not do what I want, if things don’t go my way in life, it can only always be my fault if I wish to be powerful and capable of controlling my life. Maybe I am not using the right manner, the right energy, the right motivation. Maybe I am not understood because I don’t make myself understood in a way that others can comprehend. If people do not feel me maybe I don’t make myself felt, maybe I am not expressing with the right intensity or clarity how I feel and how important it is for me. Maybe even I inadvertently hurt other people so that they are not disposed to pleasing me. Maybe I am choosing the wrong people or the wrong way to approach them, maybe I am not putting enough intention, energy and effort into things. The only thing that should be certain is that it is always my fault, always my responsibility for any outcome, because this makes me powerful and in control.
And what about coincidences, accidents that there appears to be nothing I could have done to avoid them? What if I do my very best and fail? Then of course it is still my fault for failing to find how to turn a disagreeable outcome into an advantage, to find a way to exploit the new situation and make it exactly, deliciously as it should be! I want it to be my fault if undesirable things are happening to me because I want to be powerful, in control and happy!
Next, we need to set reasonable and achievable goals and levels of achievement and not leave our level of satisfactoriness to chance:
HOW MUCH IS ENOUGH, HOW MUCH MONEY IS ENOUGH, HOW MUCH LOVE IS ENOUGH, HOW MUCH RECOGNITION IS ENOUGH, HOW MUCH SUCCESS IS ENOUGH? Most people live in a constant state of scarcity, not enough money, not enough material goods, not enough time, not enough attention, not enough sex, not enough love, not enough health, not enough security, not enough safety, not enough, not enough. We live in a circle of dissatisfaction. If only we had more, then we would be happy, however the bar keeps being pushed upwards. Every achievement becomes not enough very soon, and when we have everything we ever wished for, somehow it is not enough. Someone may feel poor with millions of dollars and another may feel rich with a day’s food, and may forget this amazing feeling of abundance in the future, feeling poor at ten or a hundred times what they once had. We strive to conquer our beloved and then feel scarcity because they don’t give us enough attention, enough love, enough whatever or they themselves are no longer enough for us!
When is it ever enough? What is enough for one is not enough for another and what is more than enough one moment is not at all enough the next. Is there any objective way to determine abundance when we change our own minds all the time? Apparently feeling in abundance is just a choice, not just an arbitrary one, but a subconscious, automatic, habitual choice. A choice designed to confirm that things are too good to be true as well as the rest of our paradoxes. To protect us from feeling happy! It is due to our twisted desire for disadaptation, constantly raising the bar, rather than adaptation which is the tendency of any other life form.
It is enough when we choose it to be enough, and we can always choose it to be enough. It is just a choice, so instruction No. 12 is that whatever is there is always enough. This instruction of the main kernel of the Choice OS operating system is designed to make us feel satisfaction, contentment and gratitude for whatever is there, all feelings that make us happy, congruent with the purpose of our operating system and life itself. Does this mean that we cannot strive for more? Of course not, striving and desiring more is in our nature, but we do not have to feel unsatisfied with what we’ve got and in misery and anxiety over our feelings of scarcity. To have a paradox free belief system we must escape the contradiction that the more delicious the cake is, the less satisfied we are with the quantity we have.
Now if everything wants to be one with, to love, what about loving ourselves? The one closest to us? After all, every light shines brightest in the center:
MOST SPIRITUAL PRACTICES URGE US TO LOVE OURSELVES, BUT WHEN YOU SAY “Ok, I want to love myself, but how do I go about it? Sometimes I love myself, and sometimes I cannot, regardless of how much I try,” THE ANSWER SOUNDS LIKE NIKE ADVERTISING: JUST DO IT! Nobody tells us how to go about following their advice. The answer is very simple but we are blind to it, regardless of the fact that it lies just in front of our noses, again due to a paradox, the paradox of pride! It is not possible to love anything that we are ashamed or embarrassed about it. If I love my house, I am proud of it and eager to show it off, and the same applies to my children, my partner, my job, my car, my body, my dog.
If I love my wife, I am proud of her and want to show her off, but if I am embarrassed when speaks about politics, because I believe she is ignorant, or if I want her to wear loose clothes because I feel she is fat, the parts of her that I am not proud of are the parts of her that my love is conditional. PRIDE IS THE MEASURE OF CONDITIONALITY OF LOVE, AND WE CANNOT LOVE OURSELVES CONSISTENTLY BECAUSE IF WE ARE PROUD OF OURSELVES, WE ARE ASHAMED BECAUSE WE ARE COMMITING THE DEADLY SIN OF PRIDE, SO WE ARE PRE PROGRAMMED TO BE INCAPABLE OF LOVING OURSELVES. Then there is the accusation of being narcissistic, of thinking too much of ourselves, despicable crimes in any human society, because supposedly we think we are better than others. But pride is an internal thing, not a competition as we think. We can choose to be proud without it meaning that everybody else cannot be proud as well.
How do I measure how much I love something or someone? I examine how proud I am, and the same applies to how much I love myself. To love myself more, all I have to do is make myself proud! And how do I go about achieving this? Whenever I am faced with a choice, if I make the choice that would make me proud rather than the choice that would make me comfortable and safe, then I am well on the way of loving myself.
Is life in general and happiness in particular too hard? This pillar is meant to help us define “too hard” and “too easy” in a clear way that does not depend on our mood of the moment:
OFTEN LIFE FEELS DIFFICULT AND A GREAT BURDEN, A GOOD RELATIONSHIP FEELS DIFFICULT, MAKING CHOICES SEEMS DIFFICULT AND SO DOES SUCCESS. WE STRUGGLE AND STRUGGLE AND TELL OUR CHILDREN AND LOVED ONES THAT LIFE ISN’T EASY, THAT NOTHING IS EASY. So we struggle and strain. It is difficult to be happy, difficult to be content, difficult to love, difficult to trust and so on and so forth. But who decides what is difficult? If you are excited and enthusiastic about doing a project, everything seems easy and when we are not, everything seems way too hard.
What is difficult for one person is easy for another and anything we do for the first time seems way more difficult than it feels after ten times, and way more difficult than it feels after a hundred times. Anything we do not know or understand is difficult and everything we know well becomes easy. Is becoming a doctor difficult? Would you trust a doctor with your life if it was easier? Who decides what is too difficult and who decides what is too easy? Is it a choice made by some higher authority, is it an objective measurement, or is it again us who are deciding, whether we are aware of it or not? How come if we are in a good mood everything seems easy and when we are in a bad mood everything feels impossibly hard? IT IS SUPPOSED TO BE EASY, AND IT IS. IF IT IS NOT, WE DO NOT HAVE THE RIGHT PERCEPTION, MOOD AND ATTITUDE. EVERYTHING IS AS EASY OR AS DIFFICULT AS IT SHOULD BE, DELICIOUSLY SO.
We proceed by diagnosing what causes disagreeable and disturbing thoughts and feelings:
SINCE EVERY THOUGHT AND EVERY FEELING IS DUE TO A BELIEF, EVERY DISAGREABLE THOUGHT AND FEELING IS DUE TO A PARADOX, AN INTERNAL CONFLICT OR CONTRADICTION, COGNITIVE DISSONANCE. If you have split up with your partner for whatever reason, if you feel that they were not good for you, good riddance, let’s move on, there are more oranges on the tree, no internal conflict, ergo no disagreeable feeling. If they have split up with you, because you were not good for them but you did not value the relationship enough to change, also very nice. They were asking for things you were not willing to comply with and adapt to. No internal conflict, no issue. But if you are in paradox, if they are bitches or brutes but you still want them regardless of whether you are admitting it, then you suffer. Same applies to anything in life. If you are a victim, you move on, but if you are somehow also guilty or ashamed about something, you suffer. So, try this: Anytime you feel a disagreeable emotion or disagreeable thoughts, ask yourself if you are believing two or more contradictory and mutually exclusive things at the same time, even if you are not aware of it.
You cannot find something that is hard to find unless you trust that it exists, so trust that there is always a paradox. Search and ye shall find, so ask yourself: WHAT IS MY PARADOX RIGHT NOW? IF I AM NOT FEELING WELL, IT IS A GIVEN THAT AT LEAST ONE PARADOX EXISTS INSIDE ME. All I have to do is find out where my paradox lies and make a choice to keep just one of the conflicting and mutually exclusive beliefs.
Onwards we move, to find true enlightenment:
IN MOST SPIRITUAL PRACTICES AND PURSUITS, THE CONCEPT OF ENLIGHTENMENT LOOMS AS AN ULTIMATE GOAL, BUT WHAT EXACTLY IS IT? If you google “what is enlightenment?” you first get a dictionary definition as follows:
1.the action of enlightening or the state of being enlightened.
“Robbie looked to me for enlightenment”
2. a European intellectual movement of the late 17th and 18th centuries emphasizing reason and individualism rather than tradition. It was heavily influenced by 17th-century philosophers such as Descartes, Locke, and Newton, and its prominent exponents include Kant, Goethe, Voltaire, Rousseau, and Adam Smith.
Now, this is like asking “what is insistence?” and get the answer “the action of insisting or the state of being insistent”! Even a child, when not being obnoxious for the sake of it, understands that it is a no no to define something by itself as in “an ice cream is an ice cream”, but most major encyclopedias in the world commit the same crime where enlightenment is concerned. Could it be because they have no actual idea what it is?
The next thing you will find is myriads of articles on Immanuel Kant’s 1784 essay in answer to this question, starting with “Enlightenment is man’s emergence from his self-incurred immaturity.”
Reading further will get you more explanation such as “Enlightenment is man’s emergence from his self-imposed nonage. Nonage is the inability to use one’s own understanding without another’s guidance. This nonage is self-imposed if its cause lies not in lack of understanding but in indecision and lack of courage to use one’s own mind without another’s guidance. Dare to know! (Sapere aude.) “Have the courage to use your own understanding,” is therefore the motto of the enlightenment.
Some Buddhists define enlightenment as: “a final spiritual state marked by the absence of desire or suffering” Really? That sounds like the definition of death; would you like to live in total apathy, indifferent and unaffected by anything that happens and lack of any desire? No “enlightened” guru in any book or movie ever explains what enlightenment actually is and how to achieve it; just do what I do, have no sex, no food you like, have as little material existence as possible, meditate for 30 years relinquishing family, love, anything that matters to you until nothing matters, and then you will be enlightened! I have a simpler solution for this: just put everybody on a heroin drip and mechanical support for life and keep a few convicts in the purgatory of taking care of the rest. Full apathy would be achieved! Enlightenment is supposed to be something desirable, not a state of stupor!
Or what about another Buddhist definition: “the awakening to ultimate truth by which man is freed from the endless cycle of personal reincarnations to which all men are otherwise subject” or the definition by Hinduism as “a state of transcendent divine experience represented by Vishnu: regarded as a goal of all religion”
You can go through pages and pages and looking into Buddhist and Hindu versions you find things such as : Sadhguru: “What you call enlightenment is conscious self annihilation”, “In Theravada Buddhism, bodhi is associated with the perfection of insight into the Four Noble Truths, which brings about the cessation of dukkha (suffering; stress; dissatisfaction). The person who has perfected this insight and abandoned all defilements is an arhat, one who is liberated from the cycle of samsara. While alive he enters a sort of conditional nirvana, and at death he enjoys the peace of complete nirvana.”, “In Mahayana Buddhism, bodhi is associated with the perfection of wisdom, or sunyata. This is the teaching that all phenomena are empty of self-essence.”, “In Mahayana Buddhism, the ideal of practice is the bodhisattva, the enlightened being who remains in the phenomenal world to bring all beings to enlightenment. The bodhisattva ideal is more than altruism; it reflects the reality that none of us are separate. “Individual enlightenment” is an oxymoron.” or Shunryu Suzuki: “It is kind of mystery that for people who have no experience of enlightenment, enlightenment is something wonderful. But if they attain it, it is nothing. But yet it is not nothing. Do you understand? For a mother with children, having children is nothing special. That is zazen. So, if you continue this practice, more and more you will acquire something – nothing special, but nevertheless something. You may say “universal nature” or “Buddha nature” or “enlightenment.” You may call is by many names, but for the person who has it, it is nothing, and it is something.” And, a very common one: “a final spiritual state marked by the absence of desire or suffering”
Some call enlightenment awareness, understanding, “to know” and many other synonyms, and this is about it more or less that you can find. The most common platitude is “You will know when you attain it!”
Immanuel Kant’s version is the most prolific, being the closest to anything specific. All else goes more and more abstract. So what is Enlightenment, this precious state of being? The answers agrees and is congruent with everything ever said about it:
Well, enlightenment, besides being defined comically through itself in major dictionaries and encyclopedias, is also defined in the same forums through synonyms such as: insight, wisdom, understanding, awareness, education, learning, knowledge; illumination, awakening, instruction, teaching; sophistication, advancement, development, open-mindedness and more. Cambridge dictionary also defines it as “the state of understanding something”. Now, imagine that you are in a room full of people where a professor is giving a talk about his new book and his work in general and you want to understand something, to gain wisdom on a subject or to gain knowledge and instruction about something in the book. To be enlightened about the information in the book. Who would you need to ask if you want to understand the book, the author, the wisest guy in the room about the book, the person who created it or somebody else? To understand the work and make sense of it would you try to agree with the writer or his detractors?
The answer is ridiculously obvious and it applies to every other situation as well: agreeing with the most knowledgeable, powerful and competent person available is always a good idea unless you are suspicious of their intention. Agreeing and following the advice of the best tennis player in order to be enlightened about tennis is what every rational person would choose, so:
Enlightenment is agreeing with the divine, with nature, with what is, because if the creator force is all knowing and all powerful, at least in comparison with any human, that makes it the cleverest and most competent entity in the universe. Agreeing that everything that exists, including humans, is exactly as it should be, since if it wasn´t, god, being all knowing and all powerful would have made it differently or changed it, is enlightenment! It is the only valid choice, unless of course if we wish to believe that god is a swindler who wants to trick us or grossly incompetent.
Wait, isn´t this happiness? The feeling that everything is exactly, deliciously as it should be, the state of being where one feels that nothing is missing, that everything is just right, where nothing bothers us and no change could make it better? Well, according to anyone’s experience of happiness of any kind, yes, so…
ENLIGHTENMENT CAN ONLY BE SYNONYMOUS WITH HAPPINESS, AGREEING WITH NATURE AND THE DIVINE THAT EVERYTHING IS EXACTLY, DELICIOUSLY AS IT SHOULD BE.
And, of course, everything includes our material forms, our egos, our sexuality, our dark thoughts, our selfishness and all the rest. Everything means everything and in no way excludes human nature which apparently collectively disgusts us, shames us, disappoints us and alarms us. How is this for a paradox: believing that the creator is all powerful and all knowing, a source of goodness and righteousness and at the same time believing that he created us wrong and dysfunctional, immoral, petty and dirty! ENLIGHTENMENT IS HAPPINESS, NOTHING MORE, NOTHING LESS.
If we wish to navigate our beliefs and opinions so that we are as right as possible in any situation, what do we do? The next pillar belief unveils a simple and logical answer albeit counter intuitive:
ANYBODY THAT DECLARES THEY ARE ALWAYS RIGHT ARE EITHER FANATICS OR IGNORANT AND DISRESPECTFUL OF OTHER PEOPLE’S PERSPECTIVES. BUT WE WANT TO LEARN, TO ACCUMULATE WISDOM, IN ORDER TO BE RIGHT. SO AGAIN, ANOTHER PARADOX. We want to be right as much as possible but at the same time we proclaim that it is impossible for anybody to be right all the time and ultimately if it was possible, it would be something dangerous, offensive, undesirable and despicable. Since we all strive to be wiser through studies or life experiences, and since we constantly fight over who is right and who is wrong, if we want to operate under a paradox free belief system, then we must have a way to be always right. If not, we will be constantly unsatisfied, angry and victimized, defending our rightness, and in chronic anxiety over being wrong. Which, operating under our universal paradox ridden belief systems is exactly what happens to us. How can we resolve the paradox that we want to be right all the time but we simultaneously don’t?
Again, a very simple albeit seemingly counterintuitive answer: You can be always right by loving being wrong!
Do you hold the exact same opinions, do you believe the same things, and do you have the same knowledge and experiences that you had ten, twenty or thirty years ago? Of course not! And if you ask yourself whether you will believe the same things and have the same opinions after ten, twenty or thirty years that you have right now, the only possible answer is no, of course not! Because if you said yes, that would mean that you do not wish to experience anything more, to learn anything more, that you do not wish to live any other reality other than the one you are living right now. Life is change, so it is both inevitable and desirable that you will learn new things, experience new things and your point of view, your ideas and your knowledge will be changing with them.
So, were you wrong ten years, or twenty or thirty years ago on the opinions and beliefs that you have changed? And if you were wrong then, you must be wrong now as well, however convinced you may be, since you may change your mind about something that you feel sure about, like you have done in the past. Are we always wrong? Can we never be right? Actually you were right thirty years ago, right twenty or ten years ago and you are right now, because you can only be right according to the information you have. When humanity believed that nothing heavier than air can be made to fly, they were right because nobody had managed it successfully. But when the Wright brothers did, the only people wrong about it were the ones that kept resisting the new information obstinately, and they were only wrong until they changed their minds. Anybody believing that Newtonian physics are the way the world works were right until quantum physics was proven through numerous experiments. Anybody believing that the world was made in seven days or that the universe is five thousand years old were right before carbon dating, archaeology and fossils proved them wrong so that they could change their minds and be right again.
Those that still believe in Genesis in the biblical sense are by definition wrong because they are not willing to change their minds regardless of the new information. We are only wrong when new information presents itself and we are unwilling to examine and consider it; when we are obstinately and fanatically stuck in a belief irrespective of new information. So, if it takes you a month to change your mind when new data presents itself, you are wrong for one month, and right before and after. If it takes you a day, you are wrong for a day, if it takes you an hour you are wrong for an hour, if it takes you a minute you are only wrong for sixty seconds. The more we reduce our resistance to being wrong, the more we can flow, change our minds and be right again. And since it is not about our position, it is about our direction (see how every piece of code of Choice OS, every instruction ties in with the rest?), the more we reduce our resistance to being wrong the more time we are right.
This does not mean that we do not examine the new info, that we do not exercise due diligence to confirm it. It simply means that we not only open our minds to the possibility of being wrong but we actually welcome and love being wrong. I love being wrong because I can change my mind and be right again. And if my resistance tends to be less and less, than I am right more and more of the time, and if my resistance is milliseconds, for all intents and purposes I can be always right, without being a fanatic, but by being the opposite.
TO BE ALWAYS RIGHT, LOVE BEING WRONG, STARTING WITH EVERYTHING YOU BELIEVE RIGHT NOW. FEEL YOUR RESISTANCE TO THE CONTROVERSIAL ANTI PARADOX INSTRUCTIONS OF CHOICE OS AND ASK YOURSELF WHETHER YOUR CURRENT BELIEF SYSTEM IS SERVING YOUR HAPPINESS.