What Action Is Necessary? (Tuesday 20 August 1985, Pt III)

The next exchange was with Juan, who said: “I have a question that I’ve wanted to bring for some time but I’m not sure if it’s the appropriate place here. It’s to do with a habit of mine that has built up over many years, and which really disrupts my state, and it’s a formatory preoccupation with sex.” It’s an interesting way of putting a question, which is why it is transcribed in full.

Mr Adie stopped him: “I want to interrupt. Putting that in other words, it means automatic thought, turning thoughts about sex. Dreams.”

“Yes, imagination.”

“Yes. That’s right,” said Mr Adie. “Well, it’s undesirable isn’t it?”

 Juan agreed, and Mr Adie continued: “Yes, it’s material. Don’t waste it. Use it as an awakener, every time something stimulates these thoughts, maybe it’s a particular kind of leg that attracts you, or it may be the face, or it may be the dress, or maybe all three. It’s a reminder, a reminder, and don’t sort of shrivel up: you want to know, what’s going on? Be interested, what’s this strange little thing here that starts going boom, boom, boom, every time a woman comes along? You want to know about it, it’s interesting, it’s very interesting. If you knew about it you might even recognise when the right one comes. Imagination just turns and turns and turns and of course it has other connections and we lose a lot of energy that way.”  

I feel as if I do,” said Juan.

 “But use it. You have more understanding now, some knowledge – after all, you brought it. You have spoken about a fact, alright it’s your fact, use it. Really, there is no alternative except to go on wallowing, and you don’t want that. So use it, don’t be shattered by it. Say yes, of course now I see. It’s work. I can use that for my work. It won’t dry up very quickly, in a way, it will never dry up. So, you’ve got a dripping roast. Otherwise go on and accuse yourself of being some sort of peculiar fellow, and be negative about it and blame yourself for having lost energy and all the rest.”

There is something that I have been observing for some time now.  I indulge this habit because I’m very easily bored, I don’t seem to be able to hold an interest in anything for very long, and my mind just turns.”

An interest is ordinarily something that attracts your attention and nobbles you. But an interest in the work is the other way around, the work will direct your attention and you have a purpose in doing so. You see the purpose that could be fulfilled, and this is more than interest; this is to see life by directing attention.”

“If you’re not prepared to try and direct your attention in accordance with a conscious aim, there’s nothing else. It is a question of your attention, and you should try and work directly with that. This sex thing can help you. Directly you get that warning, that will call you, because there’s something in you that doesn’t like it. It recognises that it is bad for you. Use it immediately and put your attention on something else. It doesn’t matter whether it’s interesting or not, you put your attention there for your purpose, and this thing can go to hell. And I emerge like that for a second or two, and gradually, longer of course.”

“So, there’s a need. It’s a very good thing that you brought that. Good, and don’t have all dark clouds; the sun rises every day, let it rise in you somehow, see? Rabindranath Tagore said: “Today, somewhere, there is a gate forever open on the sun.” Clearly what he realised was that somewhere there was a gate, somebody had seen this. So, for me, the sunrise, the open gate.”

The next exchange was with Bob. He said: “Yesterday, I arranged to drive my sister to the airport. I don’t see her so often now she has moved up the coast. I wanted to be able to respond to her in some way, have some sort of real relationship with her. I made an appointment for during that half hour in the car on the way to the airport. What I saw was some very wooden person who seemed to be trying to keep a distance, who didn’t want to get too close. There was some aloofness, I guess is the word for it. But it comes back to what was necessary at the time and I feel I wasn’t able to be, first of all what was necessary for my sister at that point.”

See, you made the appointment, but when the appointment came the question is going to be what action is necessary?” said Mr Adie. “Some kind of action when I remember, otherwise what? It’s no good making an appointment without any thought of what I may need. I have to have the realisation that when the time comes, some kind of inner act is needed. It may be a negative, that is to say, not doing something, or it may be a positive: doing something. Both in a way are active. Some actual action was needed, a plan to do something, you could have put your hand on your leg or elbow, anything to bring you to sensation, a fuller reality.”

I have to remember that an act is necessary, but I’m sort of hypnotised like a swaying serpent, and I’m lost. I must realise that work involves an effort, and the effort is totally different from all ordinary effort. That is, it requires some act. This is a very profound question, between what I am and what I wish to be, what is the act which depends upon me?”

“An act is necessary, and this is sort of the beginning of doing, because it comes from an inner, an inner sense of understanding and I put that understanding into or get more understanding in my preparation. Then the moment comes, and I’m challenged and I’m hypnotised, but I remember, I must act, I must break out, something. Mmm?”

Thank you,” said Juan.

Note too how Mr Adie came back to the morning preparation as a practical help for the day, and that points to coming to our daily programme in the preparation.

Joseph Azize, 14 September 2014


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