End of Empire - Waking Zombie Nations / Psychology, Consciousness and the Egoic Mind

Cognitive Dissonance's picture




 
0
Your rating: None
 

- advertisements -

Comment viewing options

Select your preferred way to display the comments and click "Save settings" to activate your changes.
Sat, 05/14/2011 - 09:50 | 1274101 isolinx
isolinx's picture

I visited this page first time and found it Very Good Job of acknowledgment and a marvelous source of info.........Thanks Admin!

http://www.reverse-phone-look-up.net
http://www.reverse-phone-look-up.net/phone-lookup

Fri, 06/11/2010 - 02:47 | 407684 bc0203
bc0203's picture

Found this article while reading your more recent series... but have to say I'm glad to have found a kindred soul! :)

Mon, 06/07/2010 - 16:45 | 400387 downrodeo
downrodeo's picture

thank you CD. As always, after reading your article, I feel like I've remebered something I know already but have forgotten long ago. Thank you!

 

btw 'unsafe psychic relations' --- Gold, jerry, pure gold!!! (and the tangible kind too, no paper)   

Have you ever thought of turning your energies to writing? (hehe)

Wed, 02/24/2010 - 18:41 | 244044 Mr Lennon Hendrix
Mr Lennon Hendrix's picture

Talk about being late to the party.

Mon, 02/22/2010 - 01:01 | 239872 Anonymous
Anonymous's picture

I have read this first article and I found it extremely good, since it is addressing known reality in less known way, and that is what makes it remarkable.

I also read some of discussion about observation and changes in observed system, and there I come to my favorite ever unanswered question.

Quantum mechanics is wonderfull, and I am well educated about very structure of matter that we know of, yet it remains incomplete and asks for further clarification, especially when hidden aspect of time comes into consideration of quantum mechanics and our philosophy.

(I just hope I am not going to come out of this as a Nazi)

Is life and consciousness just an after effect of subatomic particles, forces and fields, or those are consequent to a consciousness?

(I am not reffering to me or anybody else as consciousness, since I do not see myself creating matter or energy. Yet.)

Because, there must be begining and point of origin.

Mon, 02/22/2010 - 00:58 | 239868 Anonymous
Anonymous's picture

I have read this first article and I found it extremely good, since it is addressing known reality in less known way, and that is what makes it remarkable.

I also read some of discussion about observation and changes in observed system, and there I come to my favorite ever unanswered question.

Quantum mechanics is wonderfull, and I am well educated about very structure of matter that we know of, yet it remains incomplete and asks for further clarification, especially when hidden aspect of time comes into consideration of quantum mechanics and our philosophy.

(I just hope I am not going to come out of this as a Nazi)

Is life and consciousness just an after effect of subatomic particles, forces and fields, or those are consequent to a consciousness?

(I am not reffering to me or anybody else as consciousness, since I do not see myself creating matter or energy. Yet.)

Because, there must be begining and point of origin.

Fri, 02/19/2010 - 16:55 | 238069 Anonymous
Anonymous's picture

Very poignant and thought provoking read - quite far from my initial research subject yet nicely linking many pieces of my personal puzzle together for further pondering.

It is very well true that you cannot begin to change that which is around you without first addressing change from within (if you can convince the ego to take a time out long enough that is.)

If perception is most prominant within the puzzle, then the perception of oneself, ones choices and ones world view is the only place to begin to unravel any illusion, social mind control and/or denial.

Fri, 02/19/2010 - 12:06 | 237581 Anonymous
Anonymous's picture

well done, you brought the butterfly back alive!

if ten people were left on earth and they all had fully grocked what you're saying in this article, and passed it on to their progeny as committedly as religious parents pass on their particular force fields in this deluded age, i feel certain one could repopulate a planet of peace and prosperity.

serious kudos for going there deep into the abyss and having something pretty coherent to share to others about it.

if our main purpose here is to care for and entertain each other, as i believe it is, you have roundly succeeded in these noble aims with this essay, the wisdom within it was not come by easily or cheaply.

the comments have been mostly marvellous also, this really brings pscycho-philosophy to the forefront of understanding the human condition, where it belongs.

far too little good stuff like this on the web, it is 'best use' and buttresses my belief that if anything can pull humanity out of its berserker plunge-to-nowhere, it is and will be accounts by pscychonauts bringing the 'good news' that all is not how it seems any more, once one rends the veil, and allows the perspective offered to really imbue one's inner drive to ultimate reality.

bah! words never quite do consciousness justice, so all the more brave and poetic of us to try!

boy's born to blog... zombies awake indeed, lol!

melo

Fri, 02/19/2010 - 04:48 | 237273 Anonymous
Anonymous's picture

Thank you for your description of "the watcher" watching the watcher watching(?). Oops. did I go too far?
This is actually a real thing that can be tested objectively in the laboratory of the self.
It is awareness and I am not sure, but I think it is also called, perhaps, the 3rd level of consciousness.
And yes, we need our ego. A healthy ego is a good thing. It seems that we have been beaten with "kill the ego", which is a misinterpretation of the Buddhist Idea of putting the ego in its rightful place so that awareness may be expanded.
Just wanted to say thanks as I have never seen this written so well before.
I have studied Buddhism, Hinduism, Taoism for the last 40 years and was a Christian minister as a kid.
You done good.

Thu, 02/18/2010 - 15:57 | 235876 Anonymous
Anonymous's picture

ego shmego
dont forget to short the stocks. youll get whats coming to you, morts

Thu, 02/18/2010 - 14:32 | 235684 Bob
Bob's picture

But, but, that's not the definition of "ego" I learned in school . . . even graduate school in clinical psych! 

But I like it.  I like it alot. 

Masterly work, CD!  The wait hasn't been easy, but now I understand that it was the right thing. 

Looking forward to the next installment, man. 

 

Thu, 02/18/2010 - 14:26 | 235675 Anonymous
Anonymous's picture

Dreaming within a dream or dreaming in someone else's dream. Let's go a little further and in your waking state visiting someone in their waking state. If someone is open enough they will see you if not they will at least hear you. Try it sometime it has incredible impact.

Thu, 02/18/2010 - 14:23 | 235667 Anonymous
Anonymous's picture

WHOA! While I was thoroughly enjoying my trip down the rabbit hole, I must interject to illuminate a fallacious and dangerous assertion.

"Finally, in those tragic cases where a few unfortunate children refuse to absorb their conditioning, graduate school is offered. Quite frankly, it’s their last and only hope and it’s usually financed with huge loans and paid back in monthly installments, assuming they finally secure gainful employment once released onto an unsuspecting and vulnerable world. These adult children are hopelessly institutionalized and those who survive this level of indoctrination have historically done the most damage to society."

Higher education is NOT the enemy, sir. It would serve your message (and your revolution) well to avoid demonizing the portion of your readership who actually pursued post-secondary learning for purposes other than job security, income inflation or ego validation. Although our institutionalized system does generally promote conformity and linear thinking, there is a sizable minority of us who have endured the obvious indoctrination in order to rally the radical underground and rattle the cage along the way. Some of us even escaped the experience, indeed even debt-free, armed with the credentials to infiltrate the ranks of leadership and power structure within the larger matrix. Then there are those like myself who have returned to the classroom as professors, eyes wide open, illusion revealed, with the sole intention of raising the consciousness of our collective.

I do not share my sentiments as a defense to my distinctions or my profession (although I do prefer to reflect on my three college degrees as something more than seven years of my life that left me "hopelessly institutionalized"). Rather, in the interest of promoting collusion among like-minds, I would hope to discourage any correlation between formal education and zombie mentality. In my classroom I do not just teach outside the box, I've set the box on fire and together we roast marshmallows around the flames as it burns to the ground.

"The real voyage of discovery consist not in seeking new landscapes, but in having new eyes." Marcel Proust

Keep fighting the good fight,
NakedMessenger

Thu, 02/18/2010 - 12:25 | 235493 Anonymous
Anonymous's picture

Psquared, really? c.d. says we should be able to see the world as open as a child-well A child has a sense of fairness,even balance. this article is very good,but it's not a new idea. there is no mental leap that erases the fact of the clear systemic corruption in the world. should we not stop a Hitler AND serve justice to those Bush's-Schekelgrubers in our own country that funded him-that today determine YOUR reality,if you think they don't,your hopeless.rigid and pedantic ? because i rail against a system that lets millions starve?-hmmm, much better to count the number of goldman sachs bankers that danceon the head of a credit default swap. yes we must change, but theres this THING in the way and it does not respect new ways of egoless thinking-IT COUNTS ON IT.

Thu, 02/18/2010 - 12:19 | 235485 Anonymous
Anonymous's picture

Psquared, really? c.d. says we should be able to see the world as open as a child-well i child has a sense of fairness,even balance. this article is very good,but it's not a new idea. it goes back to some of the worst aspects of the original christians-o we are the problem,we must see the world through meek eyes=romans 13,etc. there is no mental leap that erases the fact of the clear systemic corruption in the world. should we not stop a Hitler AND serve justice to those Bush's-Schekelgrubers in our own country that funded him-that today determine YOUR reality,if you think they don't,your hopeless.rigid and pedantic ? because i rail against a system that lets millions starve?-hmmm, much better to count the number of goldman sachs bankers on the head of a credit default swap. yes we must change, but theres this THING in the way and it does not respect new ways of egoless thinking-IT COUNTS ON IT.

Thu, 02/18/2010 - 12:01 | 235448 Psquared
Psquared's picture

Another method for practicing "expanded consciousness" or "fugue states" where the ego relinquishes control is through "stream of consciousness" writing. I believe this is what Jane Roberts was doing with the "Seth Material."

You must also be in a state where you are not threatened, anxious or fearful otherwise the ego will not relinquish control.

Frankly, drugs are one of the ways to achieve this and one of the reasons why they are so tightly regulated. An entire social complex has been erected around many of these drugs using concepts of psychological and physical illness and control and regulation. That is not to say they cannot be dangerous but the danger is exaggerated for the purpose of control. In effect they are saying, "we don't want the masses to wake up one day and realize what we are doing."

Thu, 02/18/2010 - 11:42 | 235405 Anonymous
Anonymous's picture

Interesting read, down the rabbit hole I go.

Thu, 02/18/2010 - 19:22 | 236602 Anonymous
Anonymous's picture

Replying to myself here. Googled "Cognitive Dissonance", the great example of this is smoking. Self reflected on this and tore down my excuses to continue it, so now I no longer smoke.

Thu, 02/18/2010 - 11:28 | 235388 Anonymous
Anonymous's picture

You provoked a lot of thought with this post. I do have to say your perspective mirrors mine. Nice to know there are others in the neighborhood. But for the most part, the neighborhood is populated with perspectives that seem quite foreign to me, for many of the reasons you noted. Have come to some different conclusions which, as you say, only reflect where I am in the evolution of my own consciousness. Thanks for sharing. I don't feel quite so alone.

Thu, 02/18/2010 - 11:21 | 235379 Anonymous
Anonymous's picture

let me add to what Anon. has written-will the man who's worked hard,played by the rules now put his ego in the backseat after all his money,his job/home/wife have gone? should he? or should he send an Rpg into the offices on wall st.? because,as i see it, random acts of violence against obvious guilty world destroying criminals would be more effective then an ego shift. it would do SOMETHING! we are not going to shift into this new age love world without DEALING with the individuals/groups involved. there has to be some kind of justice first. yes, here in the States we are disimpowered, but not as (yet) as helpless as many in the third world. i don't what violent actions,but really all this "informing" the zombies is just a circle jerk. how else do you propose to resolve this?! in fact,lets your method of removing the societal ego. Nature itself dictates applying a macro level balance.you well express the mood of many,but its just another post. brian b.

Thu, 02/18/2010 - 10:08 | 235299 Anonymous
Anonymous's picture

Masterpiece of an article.

This society has been indoctrinated to feed the ego, feed the knee-jerk child more than any other time in history. As a friend of mine said lately, we are being fed a dark-ages mentality with 21ist century technology. Its dangerous.

As far as clearing the tonal (yeah, Castenada opened a door for me, for better or worse, but eventually you find you need other's directions to the place less than the drugs, even) it is imperative for us to grow as a society to do so.

Yesterday, I wrote a piece about Polarizing Conditions which tied nicely to what I read here this morning. I'd LOVE to have you submit this essay at my blog.

(it would have been twice as good if I had read this first)

My ego is a damaged abused child, I have learned to always observe myself, and never let its first-jerk reaction to control what I do/say. Ok, almost always. But as you say, it is the great protector of the weak when in life threatening situations. So, you never can kill it completely.

Cannot wait for pt 2.

Regards,

Diane G

Thu, 02/18/2010 - 08:46 | 235274 Anonymous
Anonymous's picture

Andrzej Lobaczewski put this problem in perspective in his masterwork "Political Ponerology". Countries have been shaped and run by sociopaths. They don't have the same feelings, consciences as we have. Their value systems are not human based. They are to us --unhealthy, insane: thus the mass murderers Stalin, Mao, Hitler, Caesar and their henchmen.

If we apply this insight to today's economic debacle, we see how a few of these special "people" have declared economic war on certain populations to conquer them without bloodshed -- the best of Sun Tzu's options. Lies are their most often used weapons.

Sociopathic governments war against each other and against their own citizen-serfs who are so very different from and threatening to them: thus most countries today. They have egos that won't be denied or resisted and from their own point of view, superior. We are their goyim, cattle -- penned, to be devoured.

Thu, 02/18/2010 - 08:27 | 235266 Anonymous
Anonymous's picture

More, MORE !

Thu, 02/18/2010 - 05:27 | 235218 kurt_cagle
kurt_cagle's picture

Cognitive,

Superb article. I recommend "The Goddess and the Alphabet" as an interesting treatise on the development of the ego. A lot of Taoist and Zen Buddhist philosophy is predicated upon the notion of quieting the ego as well, and it is of course a thread that runs deep through the works of Carlos Castanedos.

Artists, writers, programmers, musicians and many athletes regularly describe their immersion into the fugue state, in which the ego becomes subordinated or even turned off temporarily, and it's fascinating to look at the "side effects" of such a state. People in fugue lose their sense of time. I'm a writer, artist, programmer and musician (sadly, athleticism is not a forte), and have experienced this innumerable times. When in fugue, you can work on a story or a difficult piece of software for several hours at a time without being aware that the time has passed, and coming out of the fugue state (regaining the ego) can often result in a certain degree of disorientation as the conscious "me" tries to recalibrate itself to the outside world.

Fugue state is also notable for its ability to make rich associations, and to that extent there's a certain degree of overlap between fugue and dreaming. It's very seldom consciously directed by definition - a writer will tell you not that they created a story but rather that she was simply the scribe of a story that was already playing out in her head without seeming conscious volition - the characters were acting and reacting within their own world, often doing things that the author had not consciously decided they should be doing. Similarly a talented programmer will often end up seeing the whole system working together even if there hasn't been a line of code written.

I believe that this ability to spawn multiple entities is the flip side to your discussion of the ego, and is a direct measure of the degree to which you can effectively evaluate multiple "realities" for their best fit to the available data. In essence each entity is a different model of reality, selecting for both inputs and processing parameters. Such people are often more flexible and adaptive in the face of changing environments, and not surprisingly many of them tend to come from environments where change was the only real constant.

Similarly, I see a strong correlation between dogmatism and ego-centricity. Ego-centric people are seldom empathic, because empathy requires the ability to shift your frame of reference to another person's world view, and ego-centricity by it's very nature makes this shift difficult if not impossible to achieve. Dogmatism, in turn, is predicated upon a highly rigid viewpoint and the belief that the rules of the given reality are fixed and solid, rather than arbitrary based upon available inputs. Egotists are largely sensory, discarding those puzzle pieces which don't seem to fit within the their model (singular) and embracing only those pieces that do. Intuitives, on the other hand, are the fugue-staters, storing the odd puzzle piece in the back of their minds until their internal models can adapt to a sufficient degree to make sense of that piece (or until one of the models in their heads fits the largest number of puzzle pieces, at which point the others are relegated to secondary status and new models are created).

Such intuitives (thinking the Jungian model that was the basis for Meyers-Briggs) are comparatively rare - 3% to 5% of the population as a whole, although I think that the number may be growing, especially among the youngest generation who are growing up in increasingly systems oriented environments. They are systemic thinkers rather than analytical ones (where what passes for analysis is simply reductionism) and they often go by hunches and instinct rather than by using the rules as tools to complete their particular projects (this is the distinction between a programmer and an architect in my way of thinking).

Einstein was such an intuitive - he developed hunches, then spent years developing gedanken experiments to support those hunches), but Einstein is not all that typical of physicists (though very typical of mathematicians, which he honestly considered himself).

However, to put this rambling commentary into something hopefully resembling cohesiveness, most political leaders, bankers, and marketers overall are not intuitives, if only because most tend to be highly ego-centric. Ego-centrists tend to have the advantage short term - they know the rules of the system, know the mechanisms that can be used to manipulate those in the system, and they aren't hampered by the intuitives major limitation. For the intuitive, their models are usually more reflective of the world as it is (in all its multifaceted aspects of change) than of the consensual reality that the egoists have had indoctrinated into them most of their lives.

This means that the intuitive is often left having to guess at the rules of the egoists, trying to make them make sense when typically they don't, because the consensual reality does not in fact need to mirror the world 1 to 1. This means that while the intuitives may understand the reason for the way that the consensual reality exists, they ironically can't know it intuitively, so they violate its rules without intending to, fail to make connections that they would if they'd been steeped in that world view from birth, and often are seen as the enemy by those who lead the egoists because they have the potential of exposing the flaws, limitations and outright lies of the system.

Thus intuitives often end up becoming, as Buckminster Fuller once noted, trim tabs - the small rudder on the back of the larger rudder plane that can dramatically change the direction of a ship with fairly little effort. I've often suspected that this is one of the reasons that, when a junta or strongman takes over power in a coup, that the intellectuals of that society are often the first to be rounded up or shot - not because the intellectuals are "authorities" in the traditional sense, but because intellectuals tend to house a larger than normal number of potential trim tabs that could in turn most successfully question the legitimacy of the government and have others believe them.

Anyway, keep writing - this is turning into a thoughtful and engaging series.

Thu, 02/18/2010 - 11:52 | 235422 Psquared
Psquared's picture

Another +1000.

Fascinating how these ideas were explored in the 3-Part series, The Matrix.

I find that I have to tackle this a little at a time. When I was younger I enjoyed frequent fugue states. As I grew older this morphed into a defense mechanism called "dissociative states." I now believe they are the same thing but the latter involves a value judgment while the former does not.

When we observe ourselves we must do so without value judgment or emotional attachment. Rather we must simply observe what "is" rather than attach a label such as "good" or "bad." It simply "is" and as long as we wince we have taken the ego along for the ride. I can tell when my ego is in charge when I recall an event from the past and my moral judgment engages and results in regret or guilt. A method that works for me is to practice remembering without judgment.

Hopefully one day I will be able to enter the fugue state as I did when I was young. At the moment it is a skill I have only just begun to recover.

Thu, 02/18/2010 - 05:03 | 235215 Anonymous
Anonymous's picture

It speaks volumes that ZH now has TWO “contributors” who are “Truthers”, this one a neurotic gas bag.

Thu, 02/18/2010 - 03:26 | 235191 moneymutt
moneymutt's picture

CD - started reading this way too late, only read top third...but on the ego and zombie thing...i don't think of ego as zombie-ish, it seems pretty clever and forward thinking, flexible...isn't it the subconscious programming that we are usually working off 98 percent of the time...of course our ego is linked to that...and when you are watching your ego, what is the "you" watching...if you can see your ego, shouldn't you be doing more than watching, shouldn't you be controlling it for good?

and going into some one else's dream body, that sounds creepy, I hope you ask permission...if a non-lucid dreamer has free will to provide permission 

Thu, 02/18/2010 - 06:41 | 235234 kurt_cagle
kurt_cagle's picture

Douglas Hofstadter recently wrote a book entitled I am a Strange Loop, that is worth the effort to read (though it can be a challenging read; he gets very deep into Kurt Goedel's theory of Incompleteness), but he also links it very effectively to the recursive layers of abstraction that make up the human mind and awareness.

As to going into someone else's dream body, isn't that effectively a form of role playing? You are creating in your own head a model of what you believe is in someone else's head. If you are sufficiently perceptive, this model can actually be fairly accurate. It doesn't mean that you can know things that the other person knows or retrieve the memories that the other person has, but it does mean that you can intuit potential assumptions about their behavior, past and present, based upon the model.

To be able to have this ability, I would suspect you'd need to be both highly perceptive and intuitive - which form the foundation for empathy.

Thu, 02/18/2010 - 01:56 | 235142 Anonymous
Anonymous's picture

Pathetically and in retrospect, the title of this article should have read, "End of a Vampire".

Thu, 02/18/2010 - 01:33 | 235122 no1ego
no1ego's picture

 

I appreciated the great effort you put into your article. I would like to suggest another contemplation which you might find interesting.

 

 It is likely not possible for us to step aside and observe ego's functioning. It may appear to us like we have separated "ourself" from that object we are arguing with, want to fuck, or are ignoring, but we haven't really. That thought too is a trick of ego. It allows us to feel like there is some hope or escape or control of the terror which drives the functioning of ego. Ego is fear. It is seducing to think we can bring "vast awareness" to look into the corners of our dark inner world, and once we do so, it will be ok, because our fear will be seen to be unnecessary. The beautiful mystical traditions present this possibility. But it is a lie. We are fear whether we cop to it or not and it can't be dismantled without committing "self" suicide. That action is not wired into our structures. We may "think" we can separate from this functioning, but we are fooling ourselves, no matter how any years of cave meditation, yoga or deep thinking we do, it is hopeless. And coming to that conclusion, that our inner terror has no fix is absolutely and completely daunting. Nobody chooses to kill ego. That would be impossible. "I" (ego) will seperate myself from "I" and, that which observes the functioning (me) is now different, free? Imagine this, we have a cough, we go to the doctor and are diagnosed with advanced stage lung cancer. Forty two years old with 3 kids and a wife. We have 8 weeks left. That which arises in that moment and takes you over, is what I am pointing at. Is that fear newly born in that moment or is it who we are in that moment.

 

 

I know this likely sounds as if I am an arrogant dick. But really thats not the point. The point I am trying to make, is there is no escape. The fear is real and it is reasonable. It would be illogical to not be afraid of the black hole which we all fear to acknowledge. 

 

Thanks again for your thoughts.

 

Thu, 02/18/2010 - 01:30 | 235120 Anonymous
Anonymous's picture

I appreciated the great effort you put into your article. I would like to suggest another contemplation which you might find interesting.

It is likely not possible for us to step aside and observe ego's functioning. It may appear to us like we have separated "ourself" from that object we are arguing with, want to fuck, or are ignoring, but we haven't really. That thought too is a trick of ego. It allows us to feel like there is some hope or escape or control of the terror which drives the functioning of ego. Ego is fear. It is seducing to think we can bring "vast awareness" to look into the corners of our dark inner world, and once we do so, it will be ok, because our fear will be seen to be unnecessary. The beautiful mystical traditions present this possibility. But it is a lie. We are fear whether we cop to it or not and it can't be dismantled without committing "self" suicide. That action is not wired into our structures. We may "think" we can separate from this functioning, but we are fooling ourselves, no matter how any years of cave meditation, yoga or deep thinking we do, it is hopeless. And coming to that conclusion, that our inner terror has no fix is absolutely and completely daunting. Nobody chooses to kill ego. That would be impossible. "I" (ego) will seperate myself from "I" and, that which observes the functioning (me) is now different, free? Imagine this, we have a cough, we go to the doctor and are diagnosed with advanced stage lung cancer. Forty two years old with 3 kids and a wife. We have 8 weeks left. That which arises in that moment and takes you over, is what I am pointing at. Is that fear newly born in that moment or is it who we are in that moment.

I know this likely sounds as if I am an arrogant dick. But really thats not the point. The point I am trying to make, is there is no escape. The fear is real and it is reasonable. It would be illogical to not be afraid of the black hole which we all fear to acknowledge.

Thanks again for your thoughts.

Thu, 02/18/2010 - 01:26 | 235118 Anonymous
Anonymous's picture

I appreciated the great effort you put into your article. I would like to suggest another contemplation which you might find interesting.

It is likely not possible for us to step aside and observe ego's functioning. It may appear to us like we have separated "ourself" from that object we are arguing with, want to fuck, or are ignoring, but we haven't really. That thought too is a trick of ego. It allows us to feel like there is some hope or escape or control of the terror which drives the functioning of ego. Ego is fear. It is seducing to think we can bring "vast awareness" to look into the corners of our dark inner world, and once we do so, it will be ok, because our fear will be seen to be unnecessary. The beautiful mystical traditions present this possibility. But it is a lie. We are fear whether we cop to it or not and it can't be dismantled without committing "self" suicide. That action is not wired into our structures. We may "think" we can separate from this functioning, but we are fooling ourselves, no matter how any years of cave meditation, yoga or deep thinking we do, it is hopeless. And coming to that conclusion, that our inner terror has no fix is absolutely and completely daunting. Nobody chooses to kill ego. That would be impossible. "I" (ego) will seperate myself from "I" and, that which observes the functioning (me) is now different, free? Imagine this, we have a cough, we go to the doctor and are diagnosed with advanced stage lung cancer. Forty two years old with 3 kids and a wife. We have 8 weeks left. That which arises in that moment and takes you over, is what I am pointing at. Is that fear newly born in that moment or is it who we are in that moment.

I know this likely sounds as if I am an arrogant dick. But really thats not the point. The point I am trying to make, is there is no escape. The fear is real and it is reasonable. It would be illogical to not be afraid of the black hole which we all fear to acknowledge.

Thanks again for your thoughts.

Thu, 02/18/2010 - 11:37 | 235395 Psquared
Psquared's picture

Interesting. It is certainly possible there is no escape, but figure this. How much effort has been put into just such a possibility by so many people in history. Christianity talks about "dying to self." The Hindu, Buddhist and Moslem have devoted much energy to the cause. Perhaps it is only the desire or hope of escape which deludes all of us who think it possible.

Modern psychological literature (Marsha Linehan) has developed a rather radical approach to self-help based on the "wise mind" which is just another way of saying "expanded consciousness." When we ask, "who or what is doing the observing" we are told it is the real self observing the psuedo-self. When we ask, "how do we know" the answer is muddled.

Is it possible or not? The ego says, "test it" and if the empirical data supports it then it is likely true. But what part of us says, "take it on faith?" And what part of us analyzes whether such an "observing state" is even possible? By those very acts we have disengaged the ego by some small measure.

When I contemplate these things I feel anxiety and fear. So when I think it possible to look around the corner, or peek over the edge of the maze and I feel less anxious and less fearful have I deluded myself or is it possible to do?

How do I know?

Thu, 02/18/2010 - 01:19 | 235113 Anonymous
Anonymous's picture

Constipated, vacuous psychobabble wedges, served alongside a main entrée of narcissism, garnished with a heaping helping of hot air… particularly ironic due to the author’s ostensible theme, ‘self-awareness’, and his use of the term “zombie”.

One can only wonder whether this is the result of some sort of ZH “affirmative action” program for autistic “contributors“.

Thu, 02/18/2010 - 15:39 | 235830 Cognitive Dissonance
Cognitive Dissonance's picture

Mom, you promised you'd stop leaving nasty comments below my articles if I lifted the restraining order. I lifted but you haven't stopped. Expect to hear from my lawyer and the prosecutor. You do remember you're on probation, right?

What did I ever do to you other than give you stretch marks?

Thu, 02/18/2010 - 11:03 | 235354 Psquared
Psquared's picture

^^ Thanks for providing us with a wonderful example of the rigid and pedantic ego.

Thu, 02/18/2010 - 01:15 | 235112 Get_to_the_choppa
Get_to_the_choppa's picture

That was excellent.  It was like a summary (if not a bit longer than the one in my head) of the questions/experiences/discoveries I've asked/encountered over the last several years.  I'm glad you had the fortitude to actually commit it to paper for the benefit of us all.  And cheers to you for going on this journey with the not insignificant delta in the equation of raising children.

And did I detect a little Jane Roberts influence in there or was it just the universal 'truthiness' of the concepts shining through?

Thu, 02/18/2010 - 06:57 | 235242 Cognitive Dissonance
Cognitive Dissonance's picture

This is what I love about the comment section. More stuff to explore, like those random mouse clicks I talked about but others are clicking for me.

This is the first time I've heard the name Jane Roberts but after a few quick clicks, I assure you it will not be the last. The Seth Material looks very interesting.

Thu, 02/18/2010 - 10:52 | 235337 Trifecta Man
Trifecta Man's picture

I think "the Nature of Personal Reality" by Jane Roberts is the most important book I ever read.  Start out with that one.

Thu, 02/18/2010 - 01:12 | 235107 Psquared
Psquared's picture

CD, I read the entire thing and was mesmerized. I have not read all the comments but scanned a few. Many people missed the entire point. The ego directs our understanding unless we train ourselves to step back and observe. I once attended a session where we spent the afternoon practicing "observing ourselves." I finally asked the question, if we are observing ourselves then who or what is doing the observing?

The instructor clapped and said, "you got it." I said, "I got what?" She replied that the observing self is the "real self" and the observed self is the psuedo-self or ego. I then asked her, "how do you know?" She was stumped at that point.

I majored in Psychology with a minor in Philosophy in college. I used to argue with my professors who insisted on taking a completely scientific approach to psychology - particularly to perception. I nearly flunked "Visual Perception" and "Experiemental Psychology" until I designed an experiment to actually test (rather crudely but it was a good effort) for the effect of programming on learning and perception.

I have cut and pasted what you have written to a document so that I can read it again. The trick with something like this is to let it percolate and not analyze. It loses its power when analyzed. As you said, reading cannot help but open ones awareness - if you can get through it. I wonder how many people stopped after the first paragraph.

Thoughts, hopes, dreams - everything the human mind can do is power. Those that use those powers to control us have overreached. They have, by the fault of their own faulty egos and perceptions, underestimated the human spirit and its full power when unleashed by the "Great Spirit", "God" the "Collective Unconscious" or whatever name you choose to apply. They always have and they always will. They refine their powers but we continue to escape.

The world and the people in it are evolving. They cannot stop that anymore than they can stop the universe from expanding. The soul seeks freedom and one of the powers of expanded consciousness is intuition and intuition tells us, even if the ego lies, that we are still not free. But we can be and we will be.

We will evolve. We must evolve. Throw off the shackles of the narrow minded egocentric soul. Both ours and theirs. But as you say, first ours.

Thanks for such an enlightening and bold writing. I feel both more uneasy and safer knowing there are more and more people who not only think this way but are willing to say it.

Beware the black and the white, the good and the bad, and the right and the wrong. There may be absolutes but they are most likely not discoverable in this existence - in this life. Perhaps in Heaven.

Thu, 02/18/2010 - 01:05 | 235102 Anonymous
Anonymous's picture

I’ll quote my all time favorite line from the movie “Starman”.

Personally, I was always partial to "Red light stop. Green light go. Yellow light go very fast."

Thu, 02/18/2010 - 00:38 | 235092 Jim in MN
Jim in MN's picture

Hmmmm, the lip of the volcano.  PEEK!

 

Psychology has, thankfully, not become a science.  It would be dreadfully misused if it ever did so.  Currently it's more like a set of parables or frameworks.  We all have to struggle with language to find a platform for communal sharing of ideas.  The Tibetan Book of the DeadMan And His Symbols?  Fight Club?

Portions of psychology are, however, very potent.  The psychology of influence and advertising, now used with devastating effect in political life especially here in the US since 1980...the science of perception, the pharmacological and neurological strands that have often appeared dominant, only because they have empirically testable results, have tended to obscure the fact that there is no science of mind

Are we losing the ability to think critically as a society?  Are we losing the war of Maslow's hierarchy of needs?  If we don't have security, peer approval, a job, can we (or many people in society) be expected to pursue such things as self-awareness, self-actualization as Maslow put it, or even simply to bother to try to follow the clashes among elites and organizations in the current Clusterfuck of Titans?

Or is the Internet and the onrush of technology and time and population creating more critical mass, a smarter society, a more aware populace?  Can't we have both dynamics going on at once?

In John Brunner's The Shockwave Rider, wisdom is defined as the quality of being able to know the right course of action in an unprecedented situation.  I believe there is such as thing as wisdom, and that critical systems in global society are currently blind to it, if not actually hostile. 

Our future depends on fighting against the elements in the system, notably corruption and concentration of power, that are preventing wise, human, compassionate control over objectified organizations, be they corporate or statist.

And it can start in each one of our infantile yet infinite psyches.

Carry on!  Pip pip!

Thu, 02/18/2010 - 00:37 | 235091 Anonymous
Anonymous's picture

Bravo. Excellent piece. What a relief!

For the past year or two, I thought I was the one going mad and society was sane. Silly me!

Basically, it comes down to:

"to think for oneself and to make your own decisions...oh, and turn off that damn TV!"

Looking forward to the next piece.

Peter

Wed, 02/17/2010 - 23:17 | 235029 Anonymous
Anonymous's picture

Hey CD,

Nice post, kind of a leg up for Mr. & Mrs. John Doe but I found the length only affected by the wordiness of your supporting examples, often times your points and references seemed fine but overly drawn out ...

Also I was sort of distraught when you chose to cite a principle of physics (quantum spooky action at a distance) as if it were relevant or substantive to support anything herein. Let science be science and speak from authority without a need for interdisciplinary support else I feel you risk losing authority for want of a title.

Lastly, I rather enjoyed your lead in about the multiple dimensions or perspectives of the ego viewed from the 'self' but was surprised by your broad brush comment on hallucinagenics, drug use, etc. which seemed very 'conditioned' imho. Might want to revisit that topic from your 'self' after rereading some huxley and erowid.org personal accounts. Imho hallucinagenics are simply poision used to affect the sensory baseline or remap the sensory range that the 'self' needs to assert itself into 'reality'.

Again, good post, nicely sophomoric, hope to see your next soon, Sincerely,

Joe Schmoe

Wed, 02/17/2010 - 22:23 | 234972 deadhead
deadhead's picture

CD...i read this on and off all day.

You have a masterful way with words. Please keep writing and thank you for this extraordinary effort.  Well done!

Wed, 02/17/2010 - 21:22 | 234906 Anonymous
Anonymous's picture

I tend to overthink and sometimes overworry.

I have found that getting outside, planting a garden, building a campfire or fishing really helps.

We are designed to be much simpler, calmer creatures. Take up woodcarving or sheepherding and get out of your head.

It will be about community, skills and the ability to take all the g-forces coming our way. Don't replay all the possible scenes in your head, it will fatigue you.

Thu, 02/18/2010 - 10:57 | 235346 Psquared
Psquared's picture

+ 1000

Wed, 02/17/2010 - 23:11 | 235021 Winisk
Winisk's picture

An excellent point that needed to be said.    Worry and self awareness is a curse sometimes.  We should all have our Walden Pond to keep us rooted.  I feel most at peace when I'm immersed in a simple endeavour that engages my attention outward.

Wed, 02/17/2010 - 21:20 | 234902 Anonymous
Anonymous's picture

A helpful and effective post. It fairly suggests a handling of the human condition that glorifies confusion, lies and "clever strokes" which constitute the very essence of theft, swindling and all sorts of similar anti-social deeds.

As you infer much improvement lay in the path of sorting-out our selves and our baggage of unworkable views that often operate on "automatic" because they are uninspected, even unsuspected.

A way must be found to spot and handle unworkable fixed-ideas that degrade our condition and fight improvement.

The way certainly involves more understanding and fewer of the mis-leaders and mis-directors that spread confusion and fear and herding.

Wed, 02/17/2010 - 20:25 | 234831 ThreeTrees
ThreeTrees's picture

I tend to find that your posts are steeped in the so-called Paranoid Style and while I often disagree with your prognoses I am always enthralled by your analysis.

This particular one I find of great interest.  That part of the human psyche is capable of resisting change and obfuscating reality is of particular importance to me as I feel I have been working through a discoordination, of sorts, in my own perception of my...perception and it has been rather jarring.  While I believed I was coping in a healthy way your words have given me confidence that I am on the right track in dealing with my new perspectives.

Excellent post.  Consider me thoroughly intrigued.

Do NOT follow this link or you will be banned from the site!