A Vessel to Hold the Life (Saturday 20 June 1985, Pt III)

This continues the lunch questions from Saturday 20 July 1985. Jack said that he could not exactly recall what Mr Adie had said at the breakfast table, it seemed that all he could remember was the word “choice,” yet it had made some impact.

“On what does the power of choice depend when the moment of awareness comes?”

“Yes,” replied Jack. “I remembered it as, something that seems, what choice is possible.”

“Yes, that’s right. That’s right: what choice do I have?”

Jack said that it had seemed pretty simple, only a small thing, yet it had helped. The first few times when he had remembered it between stops, he had only thought of it in a formatory sort of way, although even then something had been present in him with “a little bit of a wish of some sort”. He came to himself a little bit more, and tried working faster, but it wasn’t until the third or fourth stop that he realised that unless he was present there was no choice.And that made a remarkable difference.

“Yes. Can you say anything about that, what you experienced? How you understood it? You couldn’t describe it of course, but do you have any indication?”

Jack offered that there had been a feeling of relief, like a completely fresh breath. He found himself rid of all the turbulent thought and mental tension. Later on in the day, when he had stopped, he was somehow able to see quite clearly, and yet there were still dreams somewhere in his head.  

“Yes,” said Mr Adie, “some dreams are present but they are rather more passive now. You were not so deeply in dreams because you were coming to the surface.”

“See, the process of dreams never stops, but that doesn’t matter. What matters is that if I am present, they are passive. There are times when, if you look underneath, you will see a sort of dark somnolent going-ons. If the light is switched on, it’s sort of fades; but if it’s brilliant light, if you are quite aware, then it’s as if they didn’t exist.”

“You make an effort. The effort is instantaneous, and my states changes. There is light, for that certain interval. But then there is another interval to come after it, there has to be. So then what? Well there is the influence of that bright note which may last until the next note. And then another effort is needed.”

“All this time, although it’s only three seconds if that, the dream has not stopped. If I cease to make an effort, it can reassert itself, becoming active, and then you, your being-reality, would sink.”

“This is very dramatic, if rightly understood. If, at that moment, I could recall the formulation of the morning, and sense its significance, that would indeed summon my presence, would it not? That is what you found. In my absence, choice has absolutely no possible meaning. So, what about this possibility of choice? Only a choice means anything, an action is required, yet who can act? It’s a very expanding vivid word: choice.

“It seems an ability which almost presupposes things that I don’t have,” said Jack.

“No, you don’t have them in your sleep, but they’re latent.”

“As I understand it, choice would be the ability to understand and then act or to try and understand in part and try and have some sort of selfinitiating course of action,” said Jack.

“Action would be required with it,” replied Mr Adie. “But be clear about the most important point: to give the word any meaning, I have to be present otherwise it’s all wiseacring, nothing. We could talk about “choice” all day long, but without presence it just wouldn’t mean anything at all.”

“It is then, when it has meaning for me, that what you said about action is relevant. What is choice, if there is no power to act? It doesn’t mean anything. Choice is doing, to make a choice. I have to makethe choice. Choice has to be realised, it has to be an act.”

“So, it’s a question of that second, something has to, some action is wanted. What is possible for me? You’re appearing in something of that direction. It’s very quick, it quickens one, it’s sort of receipt of some force of a different kind. You could call it light, you could call it a liberation, an impression.”

Jack then made a rather different comment: “I felt more connected with everyone else up here, and more open to what was going on, and that had been lacking a great deal.That was the most valuable thing.Yes. At the time, it seemed very significant to me when I was sitting here, people were talking to you and I had this impression and there were people listening, there were people turned away looking at something else, some more or less awake. It all had some meaning for just a moment.”  

“Yes,” said Mr Adie, “If I could connect moments of such character, I would be constructing something. Everything being connected, and it’s quite obvious that such moments are rare, but they’re all unique, different but related. In that way, some of these moments of reality begin to form a chain, it begins to become a vessel, if you like. It holds this quick, quick, life that could respond, the essence. My work is to experience that more, because when I do, I know there’s not doubt about it, there’s a certainty.”

Joseph Azize, 24 August 2019

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