April 21 2013

* realms

"The tigers of wrath are wiser than the horses of instruction."
(William Blake)


People can become very fanatical in the admiration of an admired person, defending that person against the enemies, and so on. This cannot happen without the inflating of one's value through a star. The fan is left basking in the glory of their master, their admired person, and that saves these people from making an effort themselves. The great man or woman is going to do it all for me. My task is only to applaud and admire. I have to make no effort to become more intelligent and wise and independent myself. So we can easily see how idolatry can annihilate the personality, making the person neurotic and infantile, instead of making them grow up, and develop.

It depends a bit on the star whom the projection falls. If the star has an inflation and misuses it to breed admirers and followers, it has disastrous consequences. I know there are sometimes masters who know about the dangers of the infantile dependence, and send those novices back to the inner task, discouraging the idolatry.

A person who is neurotic about his self worth, using a cultural star to inflate, often has an irritating effect on his or her surroundings. If one wants to know if one has an ego inflation, one only has to see if one gets on people's nerves. If you are irritating people and distressing them, then it indicates that one is overestimating oneself, or, underestimating oneself, because that's the same thing. There is ambition. Because one feels inferior, then naturally, one wants to be more than what one is. So there is an imbalance. The imbalance is not necessarily chemical. There is a lack of conceptual freedom and a lack of apprectiation and proper relation to work and significant others.

One wants to be a great person, and knows that one isn't, and so one feels like the last worm on earth. Inferiority is really a veiled inflation. And it gets on people's nerves, likely because they are being dragged down into the concern with cultural stars and trivial opinions.

We can puff ourselves up, but we can also shrink and sob. When we call ourselves incapable or stupid, it is like a conceited dance we are doing before others. We lose our connection to our life task, our natural job or function. But chasing ideals and giving up on essential responsibilities, we lose our humility.

In the last view of life, who is important and who is unimportant, nobody knows. But it's easier to fall in someone else's footprints than find ones own way. So the personality, inflating itself through vicarious living through a star, can become stunted or anhilatted of value by one's own self-inflation through a star.

(Marie Von Franz)


Now and then, in the course of the century, a great man of science, like Darwin; a great poet, like Keats; a fine critical spirit, like M. Renan; a supreme artist, like Flaubert, has been able to isolate himself, to keep himself out of reach of the clamorous claims of others, to stand 'under the shelter of the wall,' as Plato puts it, and so to realise the perfection of what was in him, to his own incomparable gain, and to the incomparable and lasting gain of the whole world. These, however, are exceptions. The majority of people spoil their lives by an unhealthy and exaggerated altruism - are forced, indeed, so to spoil them. They find themselves surrounded by hideous poverty, by hideous ugliness, by hideous starvation. It is inevitable that they should be strongly moved by all this. The emotions of man are stirred more quickly than man's intelligence; and, as I pointed out some time ago in an article on the function of criticism, it is much more easy to have sympathy with suffering than it is to have sympathy with thought. Accordingly, with admirable, though misdirected intentions, they very seriously and very sentimentally set themselves to the task of remedying the evils that they see. But their remedies do not cure the disease: they merely prolong it. Indeed, their remedies are part of the disease.
(Oscar Wilde, the Soul of Man under Socialism)

The form realms


Desire makes itself scarce in these realms, and as the name suggests one still experiences reality as form. Concepts of the formless are yet to develop to any notable degree. These heavenly realms are only attained in the deepest of one-pointed concentrations. It is possible to occasionally find oneself in these realms without conscious effort. When every trace of worry and anxiety are lost, or eliminated from the mind, one enters the realms of form.

In this state, one feels as though one can stare at a wall and see all its constituent atoms. One feels as though one has complete and direct control over the operation of every muscle fibre in one's body. One may generate this mind for five minutes, yet experience a thousand blissful years - such is the power of this timeless consciousness.
(Poison for the Heart, KS)

No Scope


To have any scope at all for spiritual progress one must be in the human realm. Some devas have potential, but it is much more difficult for they who know little of pain.
(Poison for the Heart, KS)

Low Scope


Here one knows the direction in which one should head, but lacks the strength to proceed. Realizing one's weakness in this life, one determines to invest in the future, working for the benefit of "future lives".

For example, a mother may know that Truth is attained through reason, but may lack the strength to practice reason in earnest herself. By way of compensation she can invest in the minds of her children by cultivating in their minds a genuine love of truth. She may well guide them towards the sciences, and towards an open-minded and questioning approach to life. Thus through her children she may redeem the past.
(Poison for the Heart, KS)

The formless realms


You may attain these highest of heavens only with a complete one-pointed concentration on a virtually perfect intellectual understanding of the nature of Reality. However, for all one's great achievement in meditation, and vast knowledge of philosophy, one remains firmly rooted in ignorance, and will not escape eventual suffering. This is because an unchallenged love of existence and ego remain. One must drop everything to escape the cycle of birth and death, even one's visions of the Infinite.

Those in different realms will see the same object differently. A preta will see a glass of water as putrid filth, which he is forced to drink out of thirst. A deva will perceive the most heavenly nectar, while a human will see a glass of water - neither too beautiful nor ugly.
(Poison for the Heart, KS)

Medium Scope


Here there is the strength and conviction of mind to want to relate to God on a truly personal level. But there is not the will to renounce the ego entirely. One wishes to retain some delusion, some ego, in order to enjoy life. Although there is a good comprehension of God, the clarity of mind to see God in His full glory is absent, so one is not privy to His powers.
(Poison for the Heart, KS)

High Scope


The one of high scope has developed a deep disgust for all things worldly, and now has a clear vision of the Goal. He is determined to attain perfection quickly and at all costs. Such a one does not compromise. Nor does he fear pain, for he does not have enough faith in his own existence to be able to act in self-preservation. He holds nothing back; he sees all.

The difference between the high and medium scopes is infinite. It is like the difference between a person going to an auction prepared to bid his entire life's savings, and a person who upon entering the auction hall immediately bids his entire life's savings.
(Poison for the Heart, KS)