This continues the meeting of Wednesday 1 March 1989. Chuck said: “Mr Adie, today at my place of employment I was suddenly aware of a detachment and a presence where I could be un-associated, or dis-associated from the task that I was doing.”
“To a certain extent, anyway,” said Mr Adie.
“Yes, it suddenly came upon me that I was aware of my body, I was aware of what I was doing, I wasn’t totally absorbed and identified with what I was doing. Once it was a pleasurable sensation, but I had to go away do something else, and I decided to set myself up beforehand by this conscious effort of sensing my hand, and that did retrieve that brief moment of consciousness that I had.”
“You see what a sort of balanced search you have to make, to find what is possible? To find what is possible; this is the possible evolution, that is what is possible at any particular moment, that rests with me. So, there’s always the question, what is possible? Tremendous question.”
“And you were quite right: it has to be renewed. I have search again, I can’t go on forever in just one state. So what do I have to? I have to return – that I can do. The most difficult thing of all is possible, the most difficult is to return. And if I return then I find the answer; but if I don’t return, nothing.”
“And to return I just let go, I relax. Now of course I live on the earth and I have duties to fulfil: some are simple, if I am holding a heavy weight, I can’t afford to drop it, so the body has its demands also. The muscles are serving, there’re not allowed to suddenly go completely lax. While I am exercising my muscles, there can still be an inner turning of attention. If I can be collected while I am exercising, every movement can be a return; and then I find I am actually lifting a ton when it only felt like a hundredweight.”
“But this question about returning, to me, emphasises the need for a certain amount of preparation. I need a mental preparation, and a growing acquaintance with the many, many, facets and levels within me, the many connections available in my different states. So in the middle of life this effort is near me, the realisations are a strong influence in my state, it’s as if it’s still echoing in me. I often experience a lower version of this: sometimes when there is an idiot smile on my face, I continue to smile even when there’s no one there, the person I have been smiling at has gone in the next room, but I’m still grinning. Not very profitable.”
The next question came from James: “I’ve spoken in the past about my considering and fears of people not liking me and desires for other people to like me. I’m getting a clearer picture of how important it is for this part of me to be approved of.”
“The whole of you needs to be approved,” said Mr Adie.
“Yes. And the fact that it will sacrifice anything to gain this approval, and if there is disapproval then there’s a whole host of other negative things, self-pity, and sort of wounded drama. My considering doesn’t seem to be as pronounced with some people as with others, particularly pronounced it is with my wife. Even the slightest disapproval glance about something or harsh word, everything turns.”
“Yes, but don’t forget, try and be aware that this isn’t what you think is going on, you project most of that. She doesn’t do what you think she does. You don’t really see what she does, you don’t feel what she feels. You’re on your own. If I can get out of that a bit, I can see what she does, I can see that it’s quite reasonable; in fact, I am surprised she doesn’t do more of it. This can even help.”
“Yes, I had a little bit of a taste of you described before, out of being totally free of this, sort of negative feelings and that, and I realised at that time that I didn’t see people at all really, and to try and get back to that realisation is one of my aims.”
“Yes, but you’ll have to change for that, you’ll have to establish “I.” You’ll have to find a place in yourself which really corresponds to “I,” a steward, or a deputy steward. We don’t have full “I” now, of course not, not permanent “I,” to have is to be man number seven. We have a very intermittent, as they say, deputy steward, who stands on behalf of real “I,” on behalf of the steward. It’s a representative, but it’s in the right direction. “I” is my presence, “I” is my understanding, “I” is my attention.”
“When we take thought, then it is permissible – even necessary – as we have said, to choose certain grounds which we are likely to encounter in the day, and try and see where it’s possible to resist the kind of manifestations that go with that state of disapproval or lack of appreciation and all this. How does our face look? I have no idea, suddenly, and I need to know. With some of the faces I wear I can hardly expect to find approval anywhere in anybody. It’s like a gargoyle coming around a corner, everybody is going to run, particularly children. Keep on. Keep on, and bring it. Keep on and bring it.”
It is surprising how often we forget that our far aim must be to come to permanent “I”, to a stable presence which is master of my functions, not their slave. So it is good to be reminded. Very little in what Mr Adie said in these exchanges was new. But he possessed an ability to weed out fruitless associations, and to present in a practical way the ideas we needed , that made him so great a guide.
Joseph Azize, 15 July 2020