The Spokes of a Soul

Selfhood is a big subject. It is perhaps the biggest subject, not only in quantity of data to be considered, but also in terms of logical value or signficance. Quite literally, everything must be considered if one is to shed light on the nature of consciousness and self. However, by meditating on the nature of everything, one soon realizes that there are some details that must be excluded from one's priorities. Respect is always given for the power of an unknown variable to wreak havoc or augment a blessing, but it should be understood that our limited minds can only contain so much.

Functionality

The center of a wheel can be described in some interesting ways. It is spinning, but not moving; turning but unchanging; residing in stillness, but in motion. In that way, the centre of a wheel can be seen as the primary value dictating the position and size of the spokes. Spokes can be broken and replaced, but everything revolves around the center.

However, without spokes, the wheel cannot function, and hence, the soul cannot participate in the joy of play and creation.

In the fourteen following fragments, I will be giving a brief description of psychological modes of being. Each fragment (or each spoke) is a lens to view your life and your relationships. The concepts I use in each fragment are important subjects for science but (because I’m dealing in such extreme polarities) the concepts are also more fundamental than science.

Definitional polarities are required to make any scientific inquiries (particularly inquiries related to psychology).


One | Avoidance & Distance

I’ve found no evidence that you can easily change people or improve them with force, (especially when interactions are outside the biological family). If it is a functional society you desire, then homogeneity (density) is useful.

There are large sections of the human population who are (to varying degrees) very fearful, irritable, emotionally reactive and homogenous. These humans need extra care, extra space, extra caution, extra love, and this is because they are the most homogenous (lacking power). They deserve to be productive and happy by working within their limitations.

Hence, soldiers are best with other soldiers, programmers work best with programmers, carpenters work best with other carpenters, and scientists with other scientists. A character finds his inner peace and productivity through the distance between him and what would alienate him. Among men who consider themselves equals (together; a whole), it is rarely pleasant to find someone in the ranks who aspires to rise above the limitations that define the group, particularly if he is aggressive. Therefore, society needs people to work within limitations, or else, an assortment of negative emotions flare up.

Anything too different is easily admired from a distance. Humanity is fond if it's heroes and villains, particuarly after they have been long dead. However, anything too different or too strong tends to threaten the emotional stability of the homogenous character.

A society of irrate, frightened people functions poorly and depressingly. Hence, it is the distance (emptiness) between souls that allows them to have peace.

Two | Love

It is easy to love what you already like, and our instincts often gravitate us toward the familiar. Hence, we can see in society how jocks clump up with jocks, emos clump up with emos, goths with goths, jazz players with jazz players, timid with timid, pretty people with pretty people, soldiers with soldiers, rich with rich, etc. Likewise, the animal kingdom functions in this same manner, where rabbits group with rabbits, sparrows with sparrows, deer with deer, snakes with snakes, blood cells with blood cells.

Hence, love becomes heterogenous when the young learn from the old, when the old learn from the young, when groups pollinate their ideas in other groups, when a religion learns from another religion, when science borrows from art, when art borrows from science, when a race of humans honours and learns from another race, or when music is created that defies any category.

The ugliest manifestations of racism, up to genocide, are reserved to immigrants who look, act and talk like us, the more they try to emulate and imitate us (the harder they attempt to belong) the more ferocious our rejection of them. In other words,

We reserve our most virulent emotions: aggression, hatred, envy, towards those who resemble us the most. We feel threatened, not by the other, but by the "nearly we" who mirror and reflect us. The "nearly we" challenges our sense of uniqueness, perfection and superiority. These of course are the fundamentals of a narcissist's sense of self worth. (Narcissism of small differences, S. Freud)

Someone who is very much like the narcissist provokes in him primitive narcissistic defenses and leads him to adopt desperate measures to protect, preserve and restore the appropriate balance where the narcissist has the upper hand and the newcomer is an inferior life-form. (Sam. V, Narcissist Self-Perception)

Three | Hetero & Homo

Human beings have a varying capacity for heterogeneity (power). In the same way some people can jump higher or run faster than others, there are some people who have a greater capacity for heterogeneity. In a psychological context, heterogeneity means openness to variety or novelty.

Conversely, homogeneity means being closed off or resistant to variety or novelty. The main factor that causes a very homogeneous character is fear.

Identify (and regard with extra caution and love) an extremely homogenous character by his anxiety, his anger, and his strong preferences for convention. He may also have a tendency to wear only one colour, or have very narrow preferences in music, food and people.

Four | Tyranny

Tyrants are not always political figures. Some of you have known tyrants as children and teenagers; in the schoolyard, or perhaps you discovered a great enemy in a close family member or friend.

Abusive people are those who deal with their own personal self loathing by inflicting (sometimes long-lasting) harm onto other people, whether physically with assault, or psychologically, with clinically measured insults. Most of us have acted badly toward another, and if not, we’ve undoubtedly been a target of someone elses hatred.

In rare cases, the aggression may be so indirect that the perpetrator may enjoy revenge secretely without you even realizing the damage upon you that is occuring. Months or years could go by before you connect the seemingly unrelated factors together.

It is a poor life to be caught up in such vicious cycles. Rather than moralize and label abusers evil, ask yourself how we can create a society that protects temperaments from other temperaments. We need to make better mistakes, the old mistakes have run their course, it should be clear. There are plenty of new tragedies and comedies to explore.

There is a dangerously unscientific assumption governing current methods of socialization: that everyone is equal or should be the same.

This egalitarian or homogeneous singularity that seeks to erase differences between gender, innate talent and innate volatility appears to be exacerbating psychological disorder. There need to be divisions in society that allow differences, or better, we need to acknowledge that these division are already there and work intelligently with them, rather than deny them.

What the tyrant fears is separation. An infant finds homogeneity through union with the mother, and a tyrant seeks that same appeasement through gaining control of the thing he wants to be supported by. If he seperates and loses control of the object he dominates (finds oneness with), his inner stability is lost.

Hence it is said; friendship is a disinterested commerce between equals; love, an abject intercourse between tyrants and slaves.

Five | Ethics

Ethics is about creating socially tolerable conditions where people can interact without too much chaos, mental turmoil, confusion and unpredictability. Hence, the old fashioned values of politeness, courtesy, self depreciation and respect ensures that all parties walk away from social interactions with high morale.

When the ethics of respect, self depreciation, courtesy and manners are violated (whether through an eccentric indulgence, or through physical or verbal abuse) it leaves lasting consequences that can wreak havoc for years, even decades. Whether it is a frightening scientific idea (evolution by natural selection), a philosophical extravagence (core webworks), or a malicious attack, behaviour that strays too widely will disturb the homogeneity of others.

Six | Equality & Sameness

Formal scientific testing on human temperament (uniqueness of psychology) suggests that our differences are largely genetic. This means that the differences we see between individuals are largely due to innate or hidden factors.

"A chick that will grow into a cock can be spotted the very day it hatches." - African Proverb

It is deluded parents who encourages their children to measure up to other children, particularly when the innate temperaments are not equal.

There is an Art to losing (yielding to power), and some of the lessons of sportsmanship (lessons in grace) convey this quite well.

Seven | Envy & Offense

In developed nations, there is not only a longing for equality, but the experience of inequality is often taken as an offense to dignity.

This leads me to ask: why should a person be offended at what life actually is? We can see the animal kingdom divided into innumerable groups, from birds of prey, elephants, tigers, cats, snakes and star-nosed moles.

Why shouldn’t human psychology have that same differentiation, with the very powerful in contrast to the very weak? John Wooden also asked this question, in a slightly different way:

"Why are there so many who want to build up the weak by tearing down the strong?"

Envy appears to be one of the most unscientific motivations one could ever have, and I could wish no worse fate upon my enemy than that he would live a life motivated by envy (with it's concomitant self pity).

There will always be a man bigger than you. Mentally quicker, better memory, more musical, more artistic, physically stronger. Perhaps in every trait you can think of, he is better.

So what? You have your own life to live, and although you cannot have what he has, the uniqueness of your role is something he will never know and never have.

Eight | Relativity

Heterogenity and Homogeneity exist only relatively, and what is regarded as high in one situation is regarded as low in another. Someone who appears to have a very high capacity for heterogeneity always has (to some degree) a homogenous factor leaving him blind or vulnerable. Although he may be very brave, he may also have difficulty considering abstract points of view. In fact, he might even struggle to understand things that could prevent him from making costly mistakes in life.

Any area of existence where we are not educated in the abstract (science, philosophy, math, psychology) is an area where we are of homogenous (powerless) character. Hence it is said:

"Show me a fighter who has nothing but heart and I'll show you a man waiting for a beating."

Nine | Revolution

If it is a revolution, a transcendence or celebration you desire, then heterogeneity (causing a disturbance to the existing uniformity) is useful. Contact between forces normally in opposition unleashes great energy, and this energy can be harnessed. That is why it is said: "Wage war with surprise moves. Become master of the universe without striving." - Tao Te Ching, 57

Transcendence is an escape from being offended, and so the war is waged against the factors preventing transcendence. These factors must (to some degree) be external. The internal and external are a unity, and engagement with this unity requires attributed values and created scope.

If what has been created prevents transcendence, then the re-creation of the unity is war, and so revolution is war. The war may only be upon oneself, but the point is that two forces grow in opposition, and a resulting Victor is necessary.

Transcendence is Victory, and the varities of transcendance would mirror the animal Kingom, with lower and higher expressions of Victory over the world.

Hence it is said: "Whoever has come to understand the world has found only a corpse, and whoever has found a corpse is superior to the world." Thomas: 56

Ten | War

As long as conscious beings desire comfort (desire for homogeneity), there must be intermittent psychological violence, either consciously willed or accidental. Quite simply, war is a consequence of the premises governing human psychology.

The average human mind is profoundly sensitive, and each day alive can be seen as a war on the inside, a war between the inside and the outside, and when the reality of war is sufficiently swept under the rug, a physical war spews out onto the world like water would rush from a broken dam.

A character finds his inner peace and productivity through the distance between him and an alienating factor or threat. This distance allows peace of mind, where the person is clear headed enough to work competently. A society of frightened and alienated people functions poorly and depressingly.

Hence, it is the distance (emptiness) between souls that allows them to have peace. This is what Jesus was referring to when he said:

"Do you think I came to bring peace on earth? No, I tell you, but division. From now on there will be five in one family divided against each other, three against two and two against three. They will be divided, father against son and son against father, mother against daughter and daughter against mother, mother-in-law against daughter-in-law and daughter-in-law against mother-in-law." Luke 12: 51

Eleven | Happiness & Desire

There is currently no objective way of precisely measuring an ethical action. However, it appears that human beings primarily want things like happiness and autonomy.

It is never entirely straightforward, because too much autonomy would mean that one would refrain from marriage or the compromises of friendship or business. On the other hand, being too idealistic about happiness often violates the facts of existence: that happiness is in limited supply, that happiness is an idea often stemming from a delusion, and hence, happiness can often be surprisingly scarce for anyone who hasn’t lived as a human before.

After all, when has life on earth ever been about getting everything you desire?

Twelve | Wholeness

When the human being becomes more comfortable and literate about it’s consciousness (psychology), the notion that the part contains the whole will become increasingly obvious.

As you may have noticed, there is not a single "spoke" that I’ve defined that did not overlap with previous spokes. Inside each factor of psychology (e.g., homogeneity, power, love) contains the seed of the other (equality, envy, relativity). This principle is at play when we analyze the nature of light, with pure white light containing all colours within, and each colour of light rooted in it’s source: white light (wholeness).

Thirteen | Power

Fundamentally, anything with power causes change, by definition. Women (in relation to the average male mind) conquer the mind with tenderness, helplessness, cuteness, sexuality, regressive needs for mothering, innocence and vulnerability.

The power of a gifted intellectual is to dazzle and overwhelm the mind on a large scale, negatively or positively affecting the populations pride (hence, affecting any priorities that revolve around power and security).

The power of the soldier carrying a gun should be obvious.

There is nobody who does not possess some power, and we can choose to ignore our innate power, or to learn how to use it wisely.

Fourteen | Freedom

Those with the freedom to do whatever they want soon find themselves in trouble. From the drug indulgences of a rock star to the neurotic book reading of the academic, the tendency of human beings is to insulate themselves in a kind of womb-like security.

Before we realize it, we have escaped into a type of unconsciousness or self imposed slumber (this might be how some describe the later stage of their marriage).

I can think of no better analogy to demonstrate what I mean by homogeneity than "the need for the womb".

A crisis (sown by our escape into homogeneity) will eventually occur, and it can manifest in innumerable ways. From the death of a child or partner, to an undermined career, to a cheating spouse, or to the uprising spirit of someone who (years ago) we not only hoped would fail, but who we tried to destroy.


Goodbye

This was a very short sequence of writings. Do we really deserve anymore spiritual writings than what we already have? Perhaps due to the nature of the internet, the older I get, the more surprised I am at the sheer quantity of quality spiritual writings. I see no reason to write at length for people who are unaware of the excellent writing that is already available for free.

If my writings have breathed some life into you, then please travel far beyond what I offer. It would be hopelessly impractical to write endlessly on what I would hope you could discover for yourself.

The spokes of a "soul" can be any quantity or quality depending on the needs of the individual. What serves you well this year might need to be reorganized next year. There simply are no strict, empirical rules when it comes to maintaing your psychology and bringing out the best in others.

Psychology and spiritually are redefined and reinvented every generation, and potentially every decade (or even every day), so it's up to you to create your life. Many of you prefer this to be true, or you've heard it before, so I probably don't need to be saying this.

Best wishes to you on your adventures.

"Be careful, or your hearts will be weighed down with dissipation, drunkenness and the anxieties of life, and that day will close on you suddenly like a trap. For it will come upon all those who live on the face of the whole earth. Be always on the watch, and pray that you may be able to escape all that is about to happen, and that you may be able to stand before the Son of Man." Luke 21: 34

"He who understands the Way is certain to have command of basic principles. He who has command of basic principles is certain to know how to deal with circumstances. And, he who knows how to deal with circumstances will not allow things to do him harm. When a man has perfect virtue, fire cannot burn him, water cannot drown him, cold and heat cannot afflict him, birds and beasts cannot injure him. Hence it is said: the Heavenly is on the inside, the human is on the outside. Virtue resides in the Heavenly. Base yourself in Heaven, take your stand in virtue, and then, although you hasten or hold back, bend or stretch, you may return to the essential and speak of the ultimate." (Chuang Tzu)

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