The Extraordinarily Useless
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Summary = See Below
Excursion / Task = See Below
Diagrams = #110? , #109 below
Transcript = See Below
Jan Cox Talk #251 Mar 12, 1987 – 1:16
Notes by TK
“Explain yourself”(written on board) is the designer equivalent of prison garb. Everyone explains failure but cannot explain creative process. Thus such areas are avoided altogether. Life drives, pressures moment by moment, everyone to explain themselves, thus they normally avoid true creative activity. J’s “holy camole” cannon: Don’t explain shit!!. Red Circuit acts; Yellow Circuit thinks about it; Blue Circuit is the closest approach the Red Circuit can make to Yellow Circuit function.
When lacking ‘facts’ (Yellow Circuit food) the Blue Circuit is the fallback position: emotional response/explanation. But remember, Blue Circuit response is a legitimate, efficient form of fact/Yellow Circuit info (conveyance of energy). Whereas Yellow Circuit persuasion people disapprove, discount this information efficacy. But its efficacy (of Blue Circuit info/response) is perfect –required– it is the Red Circuit’s finest and highest refinement. Connection to 2 types of psychological treatments: behavior therapy and insight therapy. Change-action Vs.change-thinking-of-action.
“Figured out” (written on board) is not what Life needs, rather it needs enough people involved in the figuring out process/struggle: The Few. Life does not need any more nouns; those struggling to become nouns are not doing This Thing. Nouns attempting to become nouns are ipso facto doomed never to succeed because Life needs no more nouns. “Conclusions are the refuge of the witless; the harbor of the inane”.
Conclusions are absolute bar to the domain of shifting certainties and unstable knowledge (the ‘good stuff’ blacked out in pornographic pictures). Homonym of conclusion for the Few: concussion.
To do the Extraordinary you must do what is extraordinarily useless. The ordinary cannot see or do the useless, except in temporary insanity. How could any reasonable person pursue any activity not to a hoped-for finality??
Love = Life’s speaking of conditions conducive to growth. That is the power of the word. It includes condemnation of anti-love behavior when Life speaks of less conducive conditions for growth.
1:11 TASK: Bombs away: Conclusions : knowledge :: shin splints : ______ . Write out a conclusion you’ve come to as a result of This Thing as answer to question. Exchange and write down the question to another’s conclusion/answer.
THE EXTRAORDINARILY USELESS
Document: 251, March 12, 1987
Copyright (c) Jan M. Cox, 1987
Diagram # 109 illustration
Throughout history people have been told through various means and from various sources that man is in a prison and is captive of all sorts of things. Since everyone is still interested in fashion, I would like to point out the un-pointable-outable. It has not been noted heretofore, but: “Explain Yourself” is the designer label on the prison garb. I tried to get you all started some weeks back when I pointed out that one of Life’s dirtiest little tricks, from a certain viewpoint, is in having someone confront an artiste and say: “Well, okay, but what does it mean?” (Of course the second part of the dirty trick is that artists then try to respond.)
But now I want to point out that this affects everyone, artist or not: Everyone seems chemically capable of dealing with a kind of whining defense or sniveling explanation of negative events and failures, but not of creative successes. What you then find is that men show, through their actions, that they are following the easiest course: to avoid all creative areas and effort. It seems as though things are arranged in such a way that it is easier to avoid any activity in which you might find yourself having any potential to be creative, because you cannot ordinarily give such a sniveling, unthinking, always-prepared explanation for it. (With apparent failures, of course, the whining defense is always available.)
“Explain Yourself” hides under a multitude of synonyms, nom-de-plumes, and misdirections, because Life is continually surging through its own circulatory system and affecting Man like a head-on collision. It is the continual urging, if not outright directive, to “explain yourself”. I would further suggest to you that to varying degrees an increasingly common knowledge of this has permeated human consciousness for a long time. It has led to such would-be mystical activities as vows of silence. It also leads to the alignment of oneself with an external philosophical or religious standard: the Ten Commandments, the Seven-Fold Path of Buddha. In that case one is back to requoting external maxims. The explanation “of yourself” is then: “I am simply following the teachings of …” (Fill it in.) That saves one from any danger of being caught in an area where one could be accused of being an individual artist, of being personally creative, and of being personally responsible.
Do you ever see anyone showing any sign, under any religious guise, of being creative? On the contrary. Think about it. You could not be a good Jew, Christian, Muslim, or Buddhist and attempt to be creative. And don’t let your own internal voices immediately tell you about the more philosophically inclined priests and ministers who are accused of being too radical by the church. You’ll find no creativity in any church. They can’t do it. They have to toe the company line — to go by the party line — even if they are rebelling against it.
Life is continually (I’m talking about continually) pressuring people to explain themselves. You’re explaining yourself if your partnership is alive and vocal, even if your tongue and lips are not moving. It is a great mechanism of transferring energy. It creates what would appear to be (once you see it) a quite material tensile strength in the body of Life on the planet earth. You can see the community of Man being stretched across the planet in what I used to refer to as “the game” or “the grid”. The directive to explain oneself keeps this game alive and healthy. It keeps a certain glow to the cheeks of Life — the part where Man is.
Those of you who like to take notes can write this down as a holy-camoly canon: Don’t Explain Shit.
The areas of Red Circuitry can act. The Yellow Circuitry can think about acting. But can any of you catch any glimpse of the fact that the Blue Circuit would be about the closest thing the Red Circuit has to thinking-about-acting? There is a statement in widespread common usage which goes like this: “When we as humans do not have adequate facts, we fall back on those goddamned emotional responses.” And your partnership will respond: “Ain’t that the truth?” It seems an indictment of Man. It seems to be an unquestionable truism. It seems also to be an encouragement for further Yellow Circuit development and greater availability of information.
Diagram # 109 grab
“When men do not have adequate facts, they will fall back time and again on emotional responses.” Hmmm. The unspoken part being, of course, that emotional responses are either illusory nothings or at least shortcomings. Emotional responses are, from that viewpoint, some sort of “hamburger helper” for facts. Uncivilized, unlearned, and uncivil reactions. But may I point out the obvious? Blue Circuit responses are also human facts and reports. If they are not factual, what are they? Is a Blue Circuit response a moth? A maypop? Even a recap? You can say that an emotional response is less effective, from some viewpoint, than would be an intellectual reliance on facts. You can say that. You can say, “My truck ran downhill.”
Apparently, there could be a lack of an expected result from an emotional response when the initial approach is from an intellectual premise. Such as trying to discuss jingoism with a person of a third-grade education. “Jingo-what? Forget that, if they’re not American they’re no friends of mine!” But what the whole body of Man within the body of Life cannot see is that emotional responses are nonetheless conveyors of energy. That is, they are facts.
Two men of a Yellow Circuit bent may discuss jingoism thusly: “We should all be less driven by blind, provincial and nationalistic tendencies.” “I could not, sir, agree with you more.” That is the fact: he could not agree more. Another instance: someone else hears this and says “That’s garbage. You’re some kind of left-wing pinko trying to turn this into a world community, and by God, I’m a good Christian Democrat German and I won’t listen to this stuff.” That’s also a fact. I’m not here to defend the Blue Circuit, but it’s yet another area to which people are blind. The more you are hardwired to be civilized, westernized and educated, the more you are inclined to think about acting rather than act. Especially under pressure. To that same degree, you see these so-called emotional responses as being almost non-entities. “The hell with you, just shut up.” Ordinary consciousness does not see such a response as a fact, but it is a fact.
Once you can begin to see blind areas such as this, you realize there are things going on in life which your consciousness treats as non-entities. The playing field is full of positions, being filled by people, to whom you are blind. You don’t even see them. If someone pointed out, “Have you ever seen a guy playing triple-standup bent-back right left-handed guard?”, you’d treat it as though it’s the yellow brick road. As though it’s an “emotional response”. You’ve never seen the position; you’ve never actually heard of it. And to you it is obviously meaningless, or you’d have more information about it.
If you’d like to jump real quick to human physiology, I would point out to you that it’s the same with persons of ordinary consciousness trying to find AMv12 in the blood of another person. If those looking do not have it in themselves, they will never find it, even with the world’s biggest microscope. So there’s your proof: “It doesn’t exist.” But it’s not a shortcoming of technology, it’s a shortcoming of understanding. It always is. I tried to throw out a question in the midst of you angry young wolves some time back, when I asked: are you sure that human knowledge extends through the use of better and newer technology? Are you sure? Are you sure it’s not that human consciousness extends and then technology follows from that?
I pointed out earlier that the Blue Circuit is the closest the Red Circuit can come to thinking about acting. Then I jumped to the quote about people falling back on emotional responses without a sufficient amount of facts to go on. It was connected. (I think. Yeah, it was connected.)
How about the two great camps of so-called psychology: behavior therapy and insight therapy. Trying to modify one’s behavior is relatively new in the western camp of psychology. Of course, insight therapy involves the classical western style of “talking”. Does anybody see any connection between those methods and my division of acting and thinking-of-acting? Every church, synagogue, temple, mosque, warehouse, nightclub, psychiatrist’s office and lollipop farm is either apparently directing efforts to change the way one behaves or the way one thinks about behaving.
And one method seems more civilized and up-to-date. The method which seems less sophisticated is always having to explain itself and is always attacking the other. The more sophisticated one, whenever it gives notice to the other, sort of does so with a “tut, tut, tut”. Which one of those two camps would be more inclined to having its energies running more or less from the Blue Circuit area? All right, let’s all think about it. Would you like your behavior modified, or would you like your thinking-about-behavior modified? Would you like to be dealing with the Red Circuit and its prime ability and responsibility to act, or with the Yellow Circuit which thinks about acting? Or would you try and find somewhere else (as I suggested earlier) where the Red Circuit comes its closest to thinking of action? (If things were as isolated as they are verbally, I’d have to tell you that the Red Circuit, if it operated in isolation, cannot think about acting. Just forget it.)
The people most interested in ideas and maps of men cut up into Circuits, and very interested in references to emotions, are what? The most emotional. And they’re always most emotional on this basis: “Kind sir, I’m very emotional and I don’t like it.” Hearing of such a division into Yellow, Blue and Red Circuits, nobody wants to play in the middle. The Circuit map is a fair representation of certain aspects of Man’s behavior, purpose, and position in Life’s body but still no one wants to be in the Blue Circuit party. But you’ve got to understand: somebody’s got to do it. It’s sure not going to be me. If any of you have times when you really feel the dark night of the soul and you wish you could be less emotional, do understand — everybody’s got to do that. So if I were you, I’d quit worrying about it — especially if you like living at Line level, and think of all this as just a hobby.
On to a new subject. It is not “the figured out” that Life needs. What it needs is a number of people involved in “the figuring out struggle”. This is absolutely anathema to the ordinary Yellow Circuit level of consciousness. It’s irrational, insane, etc., etc. But it is a fact. What Life is desiring, from the few people historically and continually involved with activity such as This, is not “the figured out”. The extreme and unusual (albeit relatively small) purpose which This activity serves is proof that Life does not need any more nouns. Nouns are as common to Life’s body as skin mites. Anyone struggling to become a noun is not involved with This. That is, anyone who is truly struggling to become a mystical Jew, a born-again Christian, a dyed-in-the-wool Muslim, a tied-in-the-dye Hindu, or a recapped Jainist… I’m telling you a fact. Life does not need it and it’s an illusion to begin with. It’s a hobby, and you are fulfilling a purpose, but Life does not need any more nouns.
At the very basic level all humans are nouns. You are part of the molecular structure of Life’s body. Being already a noun at that level, attempting to become something is impossible, because Life is not taking on any new nouns. Everyone who wants to find “the great secret book” wants to be a part of “the figured out”. Everyone who wants to hear The Secret from the mouth of a resurrected or contemporary holy man is wanting to be a part of “the figured out”. And it’s not only religion. People who are attempting to get rich, to get drunk, to get their TV sets to work, to go home and do nothing, are all involved with the process of “the figured out”. Do you see my insinuation?
Everyone is involved with being a noun. You’re made to believe (because it serves the purposes of Life) that the purpose of us being here is “the figured out”. I would be somebody if I had it… what? “Figured out.” I would be happy if I had it…what? “Figured out.” And why were you not immediately happy by finding me? Why weren’t you immediately enlightened by hearing me talk and by being around me? Only the many — only the skin mites — only the nouns are involved with “the figured out”.
“The figuring out” is a verb. It is a process. And here I must point out: conclusions are an absolute bar to the door of unstable knowledge and shifting certainties. But everything in you seeks a conclusion. Since I’m on a roll, I’ll give you another holy-camoly canon. And that is, conclusions are the refuge of the witless. Conclusions are the harbor of the inane. Conclusions are the shelter of the boorish. I guess that’s enough. Conclusions are literally a bar to the very things that Life needs in a few people. You should see by now that statements such as my holy-camoly canons are almost cutting off consciousness’ own being at the knees. What is normally referred to as consciousness would seem to be living and hungering for just maybe one or two conclusions here and there. Or a minor conclusion just, oh, every decade. But all you have to do is have one conclusion, and your witless card has been revalidated. Once again your standing in the inane community is beyond reproach or question. You have again been recapped as boorish.
(Regardless of what the younger people may think, a conclusion is not necessarily the same as a concussion. Although, in the field of homonyms — I don’t have time to go into that right now. I had not prepared an evening’s talk on the similarities between conclusions and concussions. But now that I think about it…)
If you’re part of “the figured out” there’s no possibility of change. If you are dealing with conclusions, we cannot talk about change. But since everyone wants to talk about change (yes, I heard you, sir) let me sum it up into an almost-truism. Don’t look at this as a conclusion, I’m just throwing it out for you: to do any change, you’ve got to do something extraordinary. There are all kinds of degrees and views of extraordinariness though. You can say it’s extraordinary that I know what I know and say what I say. And then we can say it’s extraordinary that there is anyone around who wants to hear it. Who can hear it.
But here is the newly-baked truism I was going to give you: to do that which is extraordinary, you must that which is extraordinarily useless. Anything less is not extraordinary. If you are doing something useful, you’re not doing anything outside the big tunnel that leads to concussions… I mean, conclusions. And it is not true that you see the useless around you. Drunks in the gutter are not doing anything useless. Couples who beat each other up are not doing anything useless. Everything you can observe through a microscope or telescope is sans an enriched amount of blood, so what you see is always that which is useful. It is almost impossible for an ordinary person to ever see anything that is in the realm of the truly useless. If they do see it as useless, it will normally be referred to later as an illusion, a moment of derangement, a hallucination, or a weird thought. They lost their mind temporarily. Everything you’ve tried to do is useful. People get together and fast for 12 days in a closet with their clothes off and then get up and put their shoulders to a brick wall and push against it for 13 straight hours… if you’re not a part of that, you can say, “How useless.” And you’re wrong — it’s useful.
It is only the extraordinarily useless which is going to aid Life, and it’s going to aid Life in “the figuring out”. Because “the figuring out”, compared to “the figured out”, is useless. Why do you think we are so few in number? Why do you think that this sounds so insane when the moon is full? When you’ve had a good meal before you arrived here? When you had good sex before you arrived? When you had terrible sex before you arrived? When you had a car wreck before you arrived? Almost anything which can happen in life can render This useful. So when you hear it you think, “Some of this is useful.” To do that which is extraordinary, you have got to do that which is extraordinarily useless.
How could a reasonable man or woman live a life which was not involved with attempting to do something to a finality, based on conclusions? Anything less than that would be what? It would be useless. Why would any reasonable man or woman participate in something which surely must be going somewhere, only to be shown, that the activity was indeed going nowhere? That, in fact, if you believe you got somewhere, you took a wrong road? If indeed you believe that somewhere along the line you have picked up at least one or two worthwhile and extraordinary conclusions, you are witless. You are insane, and boorish as well.
Would not this be a splendid place to stop? Some of you might take that as being a nonverbal conclusion.
Let’s change the subject completely. I get letters from people who have read my public writings. Someone will write and give their comment on something, and the essence of their question is: “Here is my opinion. I want to know what you think of it.” Not what I think about the subject — what I think of their opinion. And what used to be the most popular one was “love”.
When men speak of love, especially in the “spiritual” sense, what is actually going on? When men speak of love, Life is speaking of conditions conducive to growth. That is the power of this word “love” and all of the binary (even one-sided) views, thoughts, beliefs, opinions, and conclusions applying thereto. Withal, when Man speaks of the condemnation of hatred and anger, what is actually taking place? It is Life again speaking of conditions less conducive to growth, to say the least. But up until, and in, our present time, consciousness as it is across-the-board cannot hear such a description unless it is wearing the uniform of religion. Or Yellow Circuit humanistic philosophy at the very least. It cannot be confronted simply as a statement explaining what love is. It cannot be heard by ordinary consciousness.
What Life is speaking of, when it makes Man say “love”, are areas closer to the creative side of the triaxial stool which upholds phenomena here. That is the best description available on this planet up until now. But be that as it may, I could not go out and sell that. People would either dismiss it or want to argue with it. Ordinary consciousness is simply not up to that point, and of course when it is up to that point, the description I just gave you will be moot. There will be someone new here by then. We’ll all be dust on the farm. My descriptions will then be yesterday’s news. Right now they’re not even tomorrow’s news, because ordinary people cannot hear tomorrow. But do not jump to a conclusion. In this case it could be very simple, because what you’d want to do is to take a running start and …