The Great Reducing Valve

The logical system doesn’t allow anything really. It excludes it all. In theory – and great show is made of this – logic DOES approve of and allow something. It approves of and allows those possibilities which it sees as being ‘lawful’ or ‘right’. It separates the wheat from the chaff. The system of logic allows a specially indicated set of possibilities whilst disallowing all the rest. It acts as a ‘reducing valve’ therefore, just as Aldous Huxley says – it ‘creates the fraction by denying the Whole’. This conditional allowing is trumpeted far and wide as being a great thing altogether, a magnificent separating of the true from the false. It is implicitly represented as being ‘the creating of order from chaos’, or perhaps even as the creation of SOMETHING from NOTHING! In religious terms what we are talking about here is something akin to the act of creation ex nihilo – God said let there light and there was light.

 

 

In truth however, logic doesn’t allow anything. And it doesn’t create anything. What it approves of and allows is nothing at all – a shadow in place of the light. Moreover, this shadow that the absolute filter which is the system of logic produces or gives rise to is actually nothing other than the system itself. The system allows itself! The system is prejudiced – it will only authorize those aspects of reality which reflect its own biased way of looking at the world. Logic cuts no slack – if it doesn’t ‘measure up’ then its out! There is nothing as inflexible as logic – this famous inflexibility is what makes logic ‘logic’, after all!

 

 

So what exactly are we talking about here? What is this absolute filter, this system of logic, this occluding principle that implicitly represents itself as being a ‘bringer of light’ or ‘creator of worlds’? What is it and how does it come into the picture? A better question would be how does it NOT come into the picture? And the simplest answer would be to say ‘NEVER’ – the system never ceases to come into the picture because it IS the picture.  It’s the only picture we ever know. We only ever know ‘the fraction’.

 

 

And as to what it is exactly that we are talking about here – the answer is again simple. This occluding principle, this ‘non-allower’, this excluder, this uncompromising barrier against reality is the everyday or rational mind. It’s what we rely on every minute of the day. It is ‘the organizing principle’ – it is the tried-and-trusted way that we have of making sense of the world and ourselves, and for this reason we cannot do without it. We mistake the order it produces for us for reality itself, and so of course we can’t do without it! How can we do without ‘reality’?

 

 

The logical system is what we hold closest to ourselves and make sure never to let go of, even for a moment. It is what we cherish dearly as if it were our best friend. It is the ‘translation unit’ that we take with us everywhere we go. It is our protector and our facilitator – it protects us against the primordial chaos that would otherwise overwhelm us and our constructs and it facilitates us in the all-important task of imposing our own order, our own ideas on the world. It facilitates us in extending or furthering ourselves, in other words. It allows us to ‘live the conditioned life’, which is the only life we know. It tells us that this is the only life there is. or could be, for us.

 

 

But the system of logic, this ‘thinking mind’, is no friend of ours – it just pretends that it is. It lets on that it is doing us a huge favour and – out of fear and ignorance – we believe it. We let it rule the roost. We give it all our power. The thinking mind tells us that the infinite sweep of possibilities out of which everything was born is our enemy and must be repressed at any cost, and so – without knowing it – we are repressing life itself. It tells us that it is assisting us, in the manner of a faithful servant, in furthering our own aims, in achieving our own goals, when really we are promoting and furthering the system that is supposedly facilitating us. The system of logic facilitates us in doing what it itself wants us to do and we absurdly feel that we are being ‘empowered’. We collude in our own repression, whilst feeling that this is somehow ‘for our own good’. This is ‘civilization’ in a nutshell!

 

 

All logical systems act like this – all logical systems create a ‘shadow of the world’ which they then tell us is the ‘only world there is’. This is of course the original Gnostic Myth – ‘the myth of the False Creation’. All logical systems (all authorities!) tell us that what lies outside of the prescribed or authorized reality that we have been given is wholly detrimental to our well-being, and they protect us from that evil, the evil of unconditioned reality. So save us from this evil they provide us with a blueprint of how we are to live our lives which tells us about the values we should be striving for (and the values we should be rejecting). The authority tells us everything, and what it doesn’t specifically tell us we don’t trust. We don’t trust ourselves! We have long since ceased to trust ourselves…

 

 

All of the systems that we have created do this. Organizations do this, institutions do this. Religions do this. Society – which is a logical system, which is a projection of the rule-based thinking mind – does this. We offer it our unquestioning obedience and through this well-meant but foolish obedience of ours it promotes and propagates itself. The logical system promotes and propagates itself at our expense because the only way that it CAN ‘promote and propagate’ itself is by persuading us to deny our own selves, our own precious individuality. The one thing that society (or the thinking mind) will always get us to do is deny our own individuality! This is supposedly for our own good, but really of course it is for the good of the logical system that is utilizing us to further its own ends…

 

 

 

 

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