Me-Time

The self creates itself via time – this is the only way in which it can do it. It projects itself forward in time in its hopes, fears, expectations, plans and goals and it retrojects itself backwards in time through its memories, through its self-constructed, self-consistent history. We might talk of ‘living in the moment’ imagining that this is something that the self might feasibly do, but it isn’t. The self can never live in the present moment; the self actually fears the present moment – it fears it more than anything else in the whole wide world.

 

To say that the self-created creates itself via time may not initially sound like a particularly profound observation but it is all the same – if we don’t see this then we’re just not thinking about it deeply enough. Our mental activities are exclusively concerned with either the past or the future; these two domains are all we are ever concerned with – the self doesn’t actually exist in the present. Every single thought we have is either relating us to the past or to the future; there is no such thing as ‘a thought which is relating us to the present moment’. There’s no such thing as ‘a thought which relates us to the present moment’ and we never stop thinking. We are constantly constructing ourselves, either euphoric or dysphorically, in relation to what Krishnamurti calls psychological time, which is time that exists only in our own heads. Psychological time exists ‘only in our own heads’ because it is ‘time as it relates to us’; it is the projection of ourselves forward either in the form of our hopes and desires or in the form of our fears. Desire is a ‘projection of myself into the future’ because when the desire is realised (as of course I hope it will be) I myself will be there to enjoy it. The fruition of my plans is no good without me being there to take advantage of it after all and the realisation of my desires is – quite obviously – completely without meaning unless I (i.e. ‘my future self’) is still there enjoy it. [In the case of fear this works the other way around – I project a bad outcome that is meaningless unless I am there to suffer from it.]

 

When we look back at our memories, at our historical narrative, then this also reifies the idea that we have of ourselves. The fact that I have this historical narrative trailing back behind me into the distance, proves that ‘I am me’ – if there is a ‘story of me’ then there must be a me, after all. How can anyone argue with that? It’s not even that I would think of arguing with it course; who ever argues with their own history? We might repress parts of our history it is true, we might rewrite it (which is more common) but we never doubt the validity of the overall structure. We never doubt ‘the continuum of thought’, in other words.

 

The continuum of thought is what is real to us and yet at the same time it isn’t real – it isn’t real because it’s ‘a projection’ and nothing else. It’s an extension of some sort of ‘original hypothetical starting-off point’ that was created by the thinking mind but which doesn’t actually exist. A continuum is created either by projecting forwards in a logical way or by projecting backwards in a logical way and whilst this might seem to be a perfectly valid operation to carry out, it nevertheless isn’t because reality isn’t a logical thing. Reality contains logic but logic doesn’t contain reality. A good way to understand this principle – which is intuitively clear but very unclear from our normal perspective – is to talk in terms of freedom. Logic is quintessentially ‘unfree’; it is quintessentially unfree because there are in logic very strict laws that have to be followed. That’s what logic is – logic is the following of very strict laws. The term ‘reality’ can be taken as being synonymous with freedom. Reality can be taken as being synonymous with freedom because its nature is such that it ‘allows all possibilities in a completely impartial way’. What sort of reality wouldn’t allow all possibilities in the completely impartial sort of way, after all? Reality is only reality because it ‘allows everything’.

 

What were saying here therefore is simply that reality can be equated with the Universal Set; it has the properties of [1] being completely undefined and undefinable and [2] being unconditionally inclusive of everything. It is because the Universal Set is unconditionally inclusive of everything that it is undefined – no limits have been set after all, and limits are how we define things. Going back to what we were saying earlier, we can say that logic is the Realm of the Defined – it’s a neat and tidy domain that is made up of definite statements, statements that are defined in every way and which have no meaning other than the one that they have been defined as having. Logical statements are never metaphors in other words – they mean only what they are explicitly defined as meaning. Some statements lead onto (or agree with) other statements and form logically consistent continua, while most do not agree and are and belong therefore to a completely different class or set. We can imagine the domain of logic as being like a lump of graphite, where all the continua (or all the flat planes of atoms) lie side-by-side without being connected to each other. In the case of graphite, we can say that the lump under consideration is made up of a very large number of flat crystal lattices of carbon atoms which are joined rigidly together by molecular bonds, whilst in the case of the Domain of Logic, we can say that this domain is composed of very many ‘self-consistent continua’, none of which are linked with any other continua. When we are in one logical continuum we can’t infer the existence of any other continua; it’s as if they don’t exist for us, which is what Gödel’s Incompleteness Theorem is showing. When Krishnamurti or David Bohm talk about thought as creating a ‘fragmented picture of reality’, this is what they mean – thought can only ever produce a fragmentary picture of reality because thought and logic are one and the same thing.

 

Reality itself (which is to say ‘the Universal Set’) is not fragmented – it’s not fragmented because all the different possibilities are ‘equally allowed’ so although reality contains logic – as we said earlier – it itself is not logical. Instead of being predicated upon rules reality is predicated (we might say) upon ‘the principle of freedom’. In a logical continuum all of the statements possibilities that go to make it up are connected by virtue of the fact that each statement in it is logically inferable from all of the others (i.e. they are connected via strict rules); in the Universal Set however all possibilities are ‘joined’ by the Principle of Freedom, although ‘joined’ isn’t the right word to use here because only things that have being specified as being separate can be joined, and there are no ‘specified things’ in the Universal Set. There are no specifications in the Universal Set so how can there be any ‘specified things’? When we talk about U being based on ‘the Principle of Freedom’ (which is admittedly a fairly clumsy expression) what we really saying is that U is the medium which can facilitate separate events or disturbances without being them. The sea can facilitate waves of all sorts of varying amplitudes but that does not mean that the waves can in any way indicate the nature of the sea itself. None of the forms that are facilitated by the medium tell us anything at all about that medium and – similarly – none of the logical statements (or thoughts) that are enabled by the medium of consciousness can ever tell us anything about what it is that is doing the enabling. [‘Consciousness’ and ‘freedom’ and ‘reality’ are taken are in this discussion as being synonymous terms.]

 

Coming back to what we originally started off by saying, the self can only exist via the activity of thought, with projects (or retrojects) a world made up of its assumptions. Thought creates a logical continuum on the basis of its ‘assumptions’ or ‘rules’ and then projects this continuum outwards in all directions so as to fill all the space. The Domain of the Known’ is thus created and the only way the mind-created self can ever exist is within the stale confines of this defined (or ‘artificial’) realm. A nice simple way to to put is to say (as we have done) that the self creates itself by projecting itself into the future. It projects itself forward based on the rules that it is taking for granted, which are the same thing as itself. The self ‘takes itself for granted’, in other words, although what it is taking itself granted for on the basis of is ‘the continuum of thought’, which is a static/fragmented picture of reality which isn’t actually real (it isn’t actually real because reality can never be reduced to a fragment or a frozen/static picture). The self absolutely can’t exist if it doesn’t do this. The self absolutely can’t exist in the present moment; the self absolutely can’t exist in the present moment because the present moment is ‘an unfolding of the Undefined Whole’ and NOT the tautological or hollow extension of an unreal thought-created static viewpoint on reality.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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