RE: The actualist calenture

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Bruno Loff, modified 10 Years ago.

The actualist calenture

Posts: 1094 Join Date: 8/30/09 Recent Posts
After a nice chat with Trent, I have been investigating in myself what he called "the actualist calenture." The actualist calenture happens when the ego and related processes identify with "actual freedom" as something to "be," and strive to imitate what they imagine actual freedom or a PCE is like.

This is a complicated issue, since to some extent remembering what feeling happy and harmless is like, as in imagining such a recollection prior to actually getting it to happen right now, seems to be one of the tools I use in order to induce felicity, or to get closer to PCE territory ("how was that being happy thing again?"). On the other hand, such a tool works through imitation, and sometimes imitation is as far as it goes ("Fake it 'till you make it" sometimes never gets to "make it").

It has been a fascinating undertaking so far, as the problem of actualist calenture was more profound than I thought at first.

Actualist calenture has a few very obvious symptoms.

  • Proselytism. One finds that one is very keen on talking about actual freedom. One is prone to respond to others' emotional distress with speeches such as "if you were doing what I am doing, this wouldn't be a problem." One believes that actual freedom understands where everyone else has gone wrong, and insists on telling this to those others who have "gone wrong," particularly in web forums. One then might find oneself looking at one's written post, just before one presses the "post" button, wondering what exactly is one's purpose in writing such a silly message. Etc.
  • Parroting AF talk. One adopts a considerable number of sentences, expressions, words and ideas that are laid out in the actual freedom trust website, and one finds oneself repeating these ideas in everyday conversations, but also in one's obsessive mental discourse (the monkey of the monkey mind is now an actualist monkey).
  • Sense of duty. One looks at the task of being happy and harmless as a duty which one, as a good actualist, must undertake. Being happy and harmless is no longer simply a good idea, it is now a task one has set on oneself, and which is a measure of one's success. If one is not happy and harmless, one becomes disappointed and sad that it is so. If one noticed that a certain pleasant activity, by its enjoyable nature, makes one prone to be happy and harmless, now one looks upon that activity as a duty, and may even develop a sense of doing it as if it was work.


I thought I would post this here, in case someone finds it useful. Maybe there's more stuff I haven't noticed or uncovered, I would really appreciate if people could point out more aspects of this silly calenture, that I may see them as well.

I would also appreciate any tips on how to get rid of it, from someone who has removed such identification.

All in all, have a wonderful day,
Bruno
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Nikolai H., modified 10 Years ago.

RE: The actualist calenture

Posts: 1650 Join Date: 1/23/10 Recent Posts
Hah! Nice post Bruno. I think we could also have a "buddhist calenture", the "AP calenture", maybe even a "recent 1st pather calenture", and maybe even a"post-4th path calenture". Hehe! Stinky, stinky enlightenment can produce the same behaviour mentioned above.

Nick ;)
C C C, modified 10 Years ago.

RE: The actualist calenture

Posts: 946 Join Date: 3/9/10 Recent Posts
"I" concur. emoticon

I feel like there is attachment to AF-speak in some quarters. Attachment to long-winded explanations, erudition and circular arguments. There's absolutely no need for it.

The real skill in teaching is helping someone to learn, not making yourself look clever.

It's a bit like when I read posts by 'Ian And'. On one hand i think, "ok he obviously knows a lot of stuff, that's impressive". On the other hand I think "this isn't helping me at all. I need concise and succinct instruction, not a lesson in Sanskrit". I wouldn't be alone in that thinking. Most newcomers would be put off by it. I have above average intelligence and literacy and I find it very hard going at times. So you have a PhD in Buddhist literature! Great! I'm no better off!

If you're after admiration, you'll get more by talking plainly and understanding people for where they are at. Florian's posts come to mind. And some of Daniels. In my mind, a master teacher is someone who is more than willing to appear like a simpleton if that's what it takes to help his student understand. The student is the focus, not the philosophy or the lingo.
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Beoman Beo Beoman, modified 10 Years ago.

RE: The actualist calenture

Posts: 2198 Join Date: 10/27/10 Recent Posts
Bruno Loff:

Actualist calenture has a few very obvious symptoms.

  • Proselytism. One finds that one is very keen on talking about actual freedom. One is prone to respond to others' emotional distress with speeches such as "if you were doing what I am doing, this wouldn't be a problem." One believes that actual freedom understands where everyone else has gone wrong, and insists on telling this to those others who have "gone wrong," particularly in web forums. One then might find oneself looking at one's written post, just before one presses the "post" button, wondering what exactly is one's purpose in writing such a silly message. Etc.
  • Parroting AF talk. One adopts a considerable number of sentences, expressions, words and ideas that are laid out in the actual freedom trust website, and one finds oneself repeating these ideas in everyday conversations, but also in one's obsessive mental discourse (the monkey of the monkey mind is now an actualist monkey).
  • Sense of duty. One looks at the task of being happy and harmless as a duty which one, as a good actualist, must undertake. Being happy and harmless is no longer simply a good idea, it is now a task one has set on oneself, and which is a measure of one's success. If one is not happy and harmless, one becomes disappointed and sad that it is so. If one noticed that a certain pleasant activity, by its enjoyable nature, makes one prone to be happy and harmless, now one looks upon that activity as a duty, and may even develop a sense of doing it as if it was work.



Haha, awesome. I'm guilty of point 1, somewhat guilty of point 2, point 3 seems to not be an issue too much. My take on them:

  • Proselytism - look at the desire to tell other people these things, and figure out why you have the desire. maybe to make yourself feel better that what you're doing is the right thing? maybe look at how malicious the desire really is to try to diffuse it, e.g. you get mad, worked up, you think poorly of the ones you are arguing with, etc. finally maybe just realize lack of authoritativeness.. like when i find myself wanting to talk about it i have to remember i haven't even had a PCE that i can remember, so i really don't know what it's like, so why should i tell others that the methods are good?
  • Parroting AF talk - some of this is because you have to be on the same wavelength with people when talking about AF, so it helps to use the same lingo. maybe if you use a phrase a lot, examine what the phrase really means so you can see if you actually understand it, or if you just globbed an idea onto it and have stopped realizing what it means. other aspects of it are probably same as Proselytism. the monkey actualist mind is closer to Sense of Duty, so..
  • Sense of Duty - first be sincere and see if you really feel like you have this sense of duty. if so, admit it fully... then see whether it is silly or sensible. same w/ everything else, i guess. see whether having that sense of duty is helping you to be happy and harmless.
    getting mad at yourself for not being happy and harmless in that moment is, of course, ridiculous.. so one has to see that that is happening, then see why it's happening. i think getting disappointed/mad/upset at yourself comes from a basic desire to do well for yourself, to succeed. i guess just try to see that the getting mad or disappointed is itself what's stopping you from being happy and harmless.
    it seems to help to go in layers. like you start off with being disappointed. why? you feel you should be happy and harmless. why? you feel you have a duty to do so. why? perhaps the duty makes you feel safe.. makes you feel like you're on a mission. that is, it is part of your identity and it is reinforcing your self. is it worth it to do that, or would it not be freeing to let that go? etc.


I have one more to add:
  • AF Fantasies - indulging in fantasies about when you will be AF, or what the world would be like if everyone is AF. This has started happening a few times - e.g. i imagined what it would be like if the entire population was AF, how bringing up children would have a focus on having them remain in PCEs / become AF as soon as possible, how soon it could happen, etc..
    A rational solution might be - hey I can fantasize about that when I'm there, no reason to spend my energies fantasizing now instead of applying the method.
    Another approach might be - hey this fantasizing is painful because i'm imagining a world that is not actual, it's all in my head, it causes desire, makes me unhappy for being here, etc.
    A more drastic one might be - realize that 'you' will never be AF, that it's impossible for 'you' to be AF, since upon AF 'you' will be extinguished forever.
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tarin greco, modified 10 Years ago.

RE: The actualist calenture

Posts: 658 Join Date: 5/14/09 Recent Posts
just be naive.

tarin

ps. for another take on 'actualist calenture', see the following af trust-archived correspondence.
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Bruno Loff, modified 10 Years ago.

RE: The actualist calenture

Posts: 1094 Join Date: 8/30/09 Recent Posts
Tarin:

just be naive


Is "being naive" a feeling tone? Can I practice being naive as one would practice metta? (or am I trying to be clever by doing this, hence the opposite of naive?)

I sometimes feel naive... Also I wondered if that is what Richard means when he says "to be sincerity is to be the key which unlocks naiveté".
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tarin greco, modified 10 Years ago.

RE: The actualist calenture

Posts: 658 Join Date: 5/14/09 Recent Posts
Bruno Loff:

Is "being naive" a feeling tone?

yes, as naivete (being naive) is an affective approximation of innocence.

Bruno Loff:

Can I practice being naive as one would practice metta? (or am I trying to be clever by doing this, hence the opposite of naive?)

i don't know.

Bruno Loff:

I sometimes feel naive... Also I wondered if that is what Richard means when he says "to be sincerity is to be the key which unlocks naiveté".

'(Bear in mind that, at root, 'I' am 'my' feelings and 'my' feelings are 'me' and it will all become clear).'

tarin

ps though it can feel uneasy to be who you are, is not being who you are least uneasy by far?
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Bruno Loff, modified 10 Years ago.

RE: The actualist calenture

Posts: 1094 Join Date: 8/30/09 Recent Posts
Thanks a lot for your input Tarin, and also thanks Nick and CCC.

I just did a 1h session trying to "generate" naiveness and, when that seemed difficult, sincerity. There does seem to be a feeling tone associated with it, it is something a bit wide-eyed "I don't know but I'm curious" child-like feeling-tone. It was so rewarding and wholesome, that I will try to do it as a practice for a few weeks. I will report back on this.
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Beoman Beo Beoman, modified 10 Years ago.

RE: The actualist calenture

Posts: 2198 Join Date: 10/27/10 Recent Posts
Bruno Loff:
Thanks a lot for your input Tarin, and also thanks Nick and CCC.

I just did a 1h session trying to "generate" naiveness and, when that seemed difficult, sincerity. There does seem to be a feeling tone associated with it, it is something a bit wide-eyed "I don't know but I'm curious" child-like feeling-tone. It was so rewarding and wholesome, that I will try to do it as a practice for a few weeks. I will report back on this.


Ah i tried something like this too a few times.. i tried focusing on that spot below your navel that is talked about as the naive center. i felt a very nice energy grow from there to fill up my whole chest area. i thought it was 'naive energy' filling my body at the time, but i'm not sure if that makes sense. it did feel nice though! but also unsure if it has any other effects.
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David Nelson, modified 10 Years ago.

RE: The actualist calenture

Posts: 28 Join Date: 10/20/10 Recent Posts
Beoman Beo Beoman:
Bruno Loff:
Thanks a lot for your input Tarin, and also thanks Nick and CCC.

I just did a 1h session trying to "generate" naiveness and, when that seemed difficult, sincerity. There does seem to be a feeling tone associated with it, it is something a bit wide-eyed "I don't know but I'm curious" child-like feeling-tone. It was so rewarding and wholesome, that I will try to do it as a practice for a few weeks. I will report back on this.


Ah i tried something like this too a few times.. i tried focusing on that spot below your navel that is talked about as the naive center. i felt a very nice energy grow from there to fill up my whole chest area. i thought it was 'naive energy' filling my body at the time, but i'm not sure if that makes sense. it did feel nice though! but also unsure if it has any other effects.


I find it interesting that you describe your practice in these terms. I do not see myself (or anyone for that matter) as 'generating' naiveness or sincerity. When I reach down into that area in the lower abdomen with awareness, I certainly feel something. Although I've never thought of it as generating anything. In fact I would be curious to see if it could stop generating anything if "generating" was found to be its function.

When that area, just below the navel in the lower abdomen, is experienced in me the sensations are quite potent. Instead of experiencing it as some kind of energy, for me it is basically enhanced awareness throughout the body that becomes more apparent. I wonder about other actualists' experiences with this...

As I am not yet actually free I cannot speak with absolute authority on the subject, I can only share my experiences and relay words from those who have crossed that threshold. I can relay their words with confidence because of my own PCE's (which happen often these days) but of course it is always worthwhile to check the intent of any spoken words, lest they degrade into mere parroting or worse.

So I have a question for you, Beo, and perhaps others in this thread. Since you were able to experience from this 'naive center', how often do you try to repeat this way of experiencing? For me it was at a certain time each day, and then more times during the day, and then none at all... etc... inconsistent. How about for you? Are you able or willing to increase your awareness of this 'naive center'? How helpful do you think it would be in the path towards AF?
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Beoman Beo Beoman, modified 10 Years ago.

RE: The actualist calenture

Posts: 2198 Join Date: 10/27/10 Recent Posts
David Nelson:

I find it interesting that you describe your practice in these terms. I do not see myself (or anyone for that matter) as 'generating' naiveness or sincerity. When I reach down into that area in the lower abdomen with awareness, I certainly feel something. Although I've never thought of it as generating anything. In fact I would be curious to see if it could stop generating anything if "generating" was found to be its function.

When that area, just below the navel in the lower abdomen, is experienced in me the sensations are quite potent. Instead of experiencing it as some kind of energy, for me it is basically enhanced awareness throughout the body that becomes more apparent. I wonder about other actualists' experiences with this...


Hmm i've been doing it for the past few minutes after reading your post. that whole area feels kind of nice, but not in a jhana way.. it's like a kind of knotted-up tenderness, and it feels nice to focus on it. it also seems to result in pleasant sensations elsewhere in my body, not just a heightened awareness of the rest of my body. It's not like my body is filled with "naive energy" though, like during my sit, but i was much more concentrated then, so it's either a matter of concentration or maybe i was doing something else.

EDIT: ah actually a similar thing is happening. so to be more precise: i start by focusing on that area. it feels nice. a bit tender, and there's kind of like some painful quality ("hurt tenderness" seems to describe it well - like you're trying to be tender and gentle and you get hurt by someone inconsiderate and you feel it's unfair) to it that is very satisfying to break down and that dissolves as i do it more. then as i continue to do it i feel like it dissolves stuff going further up the body, so like for example that region and my stomach will feel 'dissolved' or 'naive' or whatever it is. during the sit this expanded up to the chest, so that whole region felt nice like that.

i'd be interested in any comments on this, if anyone has done something similar, etc.


I can relay their words with confidence because of my own PCE's (which happen often these days) ...

Ah fun stuff! Could you describe how you got into your first PCE?


So I have a question for you, Beo, and perhaps others in this thread. Since you were able to experience from this 'naive center', how often do you try to repeat this way of experiencing? For me it was at a certain time each day, and then more times during the day, and then none at all... etc... inconsistent. How about for you? Are you able or willing to increase your awareness of this 'naive center'? How helpful do you think it would be in the path towards AF?


I actually haven't tried repeating it much at all, but it feels so nice, i think i'll try doing it whenever i remember to. will see what happens. i'm definitely able to do it if i think about it, and i am now willing as well =P. not sure how helpful it will be; time will tell.