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Document: 48, November 18, 1982
Copyright (c) Jan M. Cox, 1982
One aspect of the reality behind the word “worship” is the desire — and it’s inherent in every nervous system — to find what seems to be inaccessible, whether it’s a person or an answer. Even while your system tells you, “I don’t want to worship anything,” everyone is wired to seek the inaccessible (which usually equates with “dead”). There is a natural attraction to a kind of magnetic field that grows up around known systems, those that have been going for thousands of years. Consider, for example, an ordinary man, even one who calls himself an atheist, and put him inside a church and he will feel something. If you pointed out, “Mr. Atheist, I just saw you shiver,” he could say, “Well, it’s the architecture of the building, it’s the way the light comes through. It’s just a trick. Anybody could do it.” But it is not true. What he responds to is a certain magnetic field. You might also note that the leaders of pseudo-systems do not let their followers get too close. They take care — mechanical care — to project the belief that not everyone can know what they know. It’s a very common phenomenon: all gurus keep a distance, all are secretive.
It should be obvious that This Thing operates on the opposite basis. I have got to bring you as close as possible to understanding what I understand. It’s not to turn you into me, or to make you talk like me; it’s that This Thing is not hidden.
And with that preface, I’m about to give you a more refined, more direct map. I’m about to uncover more of what’s not hidden. Remembering, of course, that there is no perfect map.
Diagram # 008 illustration
This map is closer to the physical reality of how your system operates than anything I’ve given you. I have pointed out that there is a part within you that looks after your physical health, your continued existence. There is no place, either in a map or in the nervous system to draw lines, to say, “This is absolutely the function that looks after the body, that part looks after the emotions, and that part looks after the intellect.” Lines CAN be drawn, but not like you think. There are at least three ways that I could draw this two dimensional representation. For now, this mapping is quite sufficient, though I must warn you again, it is not absolutely correct. No map is ever quite perfect. A good, non-perfect map is always floating; it’s always alive. It breathes and it stretches.
There are literally within the brain, three distinct circuits. The development of which absolutely reflect the history of Man. The Three Circuits are drawn in Red, Blue, and Yellow, and they overlap. The First and lowest is the Red, or Primal Circuit; the second is the Mid, or Blue Circuit, and the top circuit is the Yellow — the Decisive Circuit. Note specifically, that all three touch each other and they overlap. Inside of you the circuits physically exist. Do not take this drawing or my description as simply a picturized parable. The circuits physically exist in every human nervous system. There are even parts of the structure of the nervous system that medical science knows in a different way, though with different names. Of course, science doesn’t see it the way in which I’m describing it. This physically and literally exists. When you were born, the Three Circuits, which I call the Primal, the Mid and the Decisive Circuits, were activated in a particular manner. It is the manner and extent of their activation that makes you recognizable, especially to yourself, as you. The point of overlap of the three are the points of communication. Thus you see that communication in all directions is possible — it doesn’t simply run in one direction given that the circuitry can be fed — impulses can enter the system — through any one of the Three Circuits. For instance, an emotion can be triggered by a sound, a sensation, or by hearing a certain word. Remember, I am putting certain flaws into this map. The only good map is one that’s alive, one that contains a willful error. But for the purpose of this discussion, information can enter any one of the Three Circuits and travel at the speed of light to the other two.
What I’ve actually been describing to you is the termination of electrical energy that supports each little thing that seems to be a thought, and it can run through an almost infinite number of possibilities. With this map, and with the one shortly to follow, I’m going to give you a new, dangerous way to define where “I” comes from — the whole sensation of what “I” seems to be. “I” seems, for the time being, to be a thought that you thought, something that, without further investigation, seemed to arise in the Yellow Circuit. So you say, “Yes, I thought it. I had that thought.” But that “thought” could have originated elsewhere and it could have run the communication gauntlet before “you” ever “thought” it. The combinations are limitless since the communication between the Three Circuits is continuous. I could simply refer to communication going from the bottom to the top, but don’t take that qualitatively. There is a certain quality to it, but just because the Yellow Circuit is higher in the system does not mean it’s better. To wit: the Primal Circuit has responsibilities which, if left to the Yellow Circuit, would ruin your life. You’d kill yourself. So don’t conclude that because the Primal Circuit is lower, that it is, per se, inferior. Each circuit serves its own function and without all three, you wouldn’t be human. Without all three developed to a certain degree, you’d not be doing This. Ordinary life requires that all three have to be activated enough to carry out their mechanical role. Neither you nor anyone else had responsibility for the manner in which thier circuits were activated, nor the way they mechanically operate. There was no way you could have affected it. By the time the circuits were mechanically as developed as they ever would be, you were grown. You were an adult, you were what Life needed you to be. That’s what growing up is. When the teenager becomes an adult, when he finally becomes settled and responsible, and more or less bored, that is the point at which his circuits are as activated as they ever will be. And under ordinary circumstances, that degree of activation will never change.
In this diagram, I’ve drawn a green field encircling all Three Circuits. I’m calling it the dampening field, because that is its function. It is an electrochemical sub-process, and it operates as a magnetic field. The dampener serves to modulate the system’s alternate modes of calm and excitement. We can also call it the E-C factor, and again, what it does is to dampen the continual need for the system to be excited and then calmed. Without the modulation, the control, of the E-C factor, no system would be stable.
In two-circuited creatures — dogs, lions, walruses — in closed system creatures, the E-C factor serves to keep them physically alive. By its operation, a lion is stimulated to the proper degree, by the proper information. It orients him physically, and thus the transfer of energy on that level is maintained.
In Man, the E-C factor serves an expanded and an expansive function. It is the operation of the E-C factor that makes further expansion possible. All ordinary human activity can be seen as energy, and further, as potential stimulus for excitement of the circuits. However, Life’s growth, and hence, man’s development is paced; it is contained. There must be growth and movement, but it must proceed at a stable pace. Anything that grows too fast — anything indiscriminately stimulated and excited — would simply eat itself up.
The dampening field, the E-C factor, resolves the communication between the Three Circuits. It modulates how much and what kind of excitement the system can tolerate, and likewise, the necessary degree of calm. If not for the dampener, the level of unbridled excitement experienced by children and teenagers would, relatively speaking, continue throughout your life instead of stopping at maturity.
For all practical purposes, the general excitement flowing through these Three Circuits has terminated by the time you reach the age of twenty one. The remainder of an ordinary human life — indeed all human activity — is the attempt to produce new excitement. Excitement does happen, but the level of excitement necessary to spark expanded activation of the circuitry is inaccessible at Line level. Your own system is concerned with maintaining its stability; your own system functions to keep you where you are. The possibility of excitement is there or Line-level consciousness would never move. The system has to be excited to a minimum degree simply to sustain life, to keep you moving through 60 or 70 natural years. But to undertake extraordinary expansion requires a tolerance and a need for expanded levels of excitement. In a sense, you have to not remember that you’re grown up. You, in a sense, must emulate or imitate the unbounded excitement of a child.
Each circuit has its own memory and memory serves to excite the system after the original energy transfer is long gone. It is again a sample of how Life uses and reuses all available energy. Remembering something excites the circuitry. And further, talking about memories provides a slightly different form of excitement. But the excitement provided by memories is empty calories. You can never extend yourself above the line by memory, especially by negative memory. You simply can not be hostile and do This. But realize how impossible it is in the ordinary world: negative emotions and hostility are, for ordinary man, the only source of excitement. To remember, “god damn, that was terrible,” does excite one of the circuits. But it won’t expand it. Such negative excitement makes Life bearable and it keeps the system safely stimulated, within the proper bounds. And it keeps growth alive from one generation to another. Look at how every generation tries to kick over the previous generation. Simply stated, youth is rebellion. One of the most obvious places to look is at music. Your father goes into raptures at hearing a Glenn Miller record, “Oh, that brings back memories! I can remember when I first met your mother, the time we had a half pint in the back seat of the car.” You listen to it, and you think, “You mean you people went out and had fun with this kind of music?” The music that excited your father’s generation — the information that excited his generation — is, for you, impotent. It’s no longer exciting; it will no longer produce growth. Your parents’ music was no better or worse than yours, but it is now noise. It’s meaningless. Your dad says, “Well, that’s the music that we used to fall in love to.” And you could say, “Well, I guess you had to be there.” And you would be right: you did have to be there. You always have to be there, at the scene of the freshest possible excitement. Memory won’t do. Music is only an example. Re-excitement keeps humanity’s circuits expanding at a stable, contained rate. But to expand the Yellow Circuit beyond the current limits, you must have fresh, unnatural excitement.
With this map, you can see that everything available to humanity at the ordinary level is an attempt to excite the circuitry, or on the other hand, to calm it. I’m telling you, it’s the same thing and you can see it in alcohol, television, spices, drugs, music, running, and reading. You can see that inside the upper circuitry there is always the need for excitement, but on a meaningless, impotent level.
An electrical circuit can be excited by additional voltage. But when you do the same things over and over, there is no increased voltage, and there is no further growth. Thus, what was initially a new charge, a new, exciting experience, sooner or later will have a calming effect.
The system’s need to be excited and calmed runs into all kinds of distortions and permutations. Take a guy who undertakes a “religious” observance, for instance, he decides he’ll stick pins in his hand every night at 7:30. At first, it’s exciting. It may even seem profitable. Then it shortly becomes a chore. Then he forgets to do it for a week. But now he’s agitated because he’s forgotten his great spiritual task. The original excitement, the original undertaking, has become its own opposite. But it’s the still the same thing.
The movement, the circulation of energy through the circuitry has a certain pulsating stability by the time you’re grown. That stability is produced and maintained by the dampening factor; that stability, that function is what you would normally call personality. You could say that personality is produced in a certain place that I call “the resolved I.” It is a resolution of the conversation between the circuits, including all possible interminglings. What keeps them moving, what keeps them alive, is the constant excitement, and then the easing off, or calming. It’s all stable, it’s all contained, it’s all predictable due to the combination and mixture of circuits that resolves the communication and comes up with what seems to be each person’s “I.” The Three Circuits are each activated to a certain degree; it is the level of activation that creates a recognizable “you” by the time you are mature. At this point in your life, your circuitry has been activated as far as it was intended to be activated. They resolve themselves by means of the dampening field which physically encircles them. Each circuit has a specific, separate function, but they do not operate separately and distinctly from each other. It is the resolution of the Three Circuits that seems to be a stable individual. It is a state of stability, but it is also the state of ordinary predictable existence. It is Line-level consciousness.
Each circuit speaks in a tongue foreign to the other two. One circuit may feed information to another that directly conflicts with what that other circuit is doing. So, on one level, there’s always a state of inner bedlam, if not outright warfare. But without this apparent internal conflict, the human nervous system would be closed. There would be no possibility of further growth. What is perceived at the ordinary level as a flaw, as something to be corrected — to wit: inner conflict — is to extraordinary sight, evidence of Life’s continued growth.
What the dampening factor offers to humanity is a stability that everyone on this planet calls insight. It’s a kind of communication between the circuits that gives an overview, especially when one circuit wants one thing, and another circuit is in direct opposition to it. What you end up with is a resolution between the Three Circuits. What you end up with is what says, “I.” This resolution of the circuits, this “I”, seems to be right at the heart of all your suffering. One circuit wants to do something that from its viewpoint, would bring no harm to the continued health of the system, but simultaneously, this very thing can not be allowed by another circuit that has completely different needs. And if it is allowed, what is felt .pais called “guilt.” On the other hand, if it’s not allowed, you’ve got regret to deal with.
I’ll use one example, but guilt is not limited to this one example. Men — most men — feel “guilty” about masturbation, whereas women don’t seem to have the same response. The urge is produced in one circuit, but another circuit nonverbally knows that, “Hey, you can’t do this. We’ll all die.” In other words, if everyone engaged solely in solo sex, the race is finished. And so the poor guy feels “guilty.” It is a matter of each circuit looking after its own interests and the interests of each are not the interests of all. Hence, we have internal conflict, and second “thoughts”, regret, and guilt. No matter the accepted psychological explanation — I’ve just given you as good a working definition for guilt as you’ll ever find. It has nothing to do with psychology. Do you now glimpse how it is that one loves to suffer. It’s all for low level excitement of the system. I ask you again, are you sure that you are prepared to give up all forms of guilt and suffering? What would you do in your spare time?
The circuits do not speak in a language you know, and not all the circuits talk. There’s only one circuit that has the job of direct communication with all the others. And one that has the job of speaking for all the others. If you could see — if you could perceive — the current as it courses through the circuitry, you would be smarter than the combination of all the circuits. It’s possible only for one who stands above it all. I use the word “smart”, which is not really the best word, but it’s not an incorrect way to look at it. The circuits themselves aren’t smart; they’ve got their job to do, and they do it as well as they can. And the resolution — the culmination of all of them — for example, you, your “I” is as smart or as dumb as it will ever be. But it is possible for you here to be smarter than you were born to be.
When I ask you to try to objectively see the pictures, the information, the messages coming from the bowels of the ship, what you’re doing is activating to the utmost degree the greatest concentration of energy behind the sensation of “I.” And what happens? That which seems to have been going on in a verbal, intelligent manner stops.
I’m suggesting to you that when you turn the circuitry on itself, everything stops. Now, on the basis of this consideration, ask yourself: “What is the source of these thoughts and daydreams?” You’ve always taken it as being, “Well, it’s me up in the Yellow Circuit.” But why is it that you can take this “me” — you can take one of the circuits and tell it, “All right, look!” And what it’s looking at is where it just was. All activity seems to stop. But may I suggest further that it doesn’t stop. The noise down in the bowels of the ship continues, but you have short circuited the circuit that was in charge of talking for everybody. It is as though you have cut off the video screen and put a stopper on the hose coming up from downstairs, and now everything is quiet. You see no pictures. The lower circuitry is still alive, still making noise, but it no longer has a voice. So you can’t hear it.
It is one of the prime purposes of one of the circuits to be a spokesman for all three. When that circuit talks, it believes it’s talking for “me”, for all three. Such as, “Well, I’m never going to do that,” or, “I’m going to stop having daydreams.” But according to the circuits; they are doing better. They’re doing what they should and must do.
Consider now everything I’ve said in light of the Three forces. The need for growth inducing excitement could also be call the First force, or energy to move, whether it be physically or nonphysically. The Second force, the need for calming of the system, I could also rename the resistance to moving. The Third force seems to be elusive because it’s normally what is called the outcome. It is the resolution between this and that. For example, the Third force could be seen as the resolution of the conflict between, “I want to,” and, “I don’t want to.” What seems to be the outcome of that conflict is what you can’t see: it is the Third force. The reason, or one of the reasons you can not see the Third force is that you can neither identify nor feel it. As soon as the Third force is produced, it seems to be an outcome to this system. But by then, the whole system has been rearranged. The “outcome” in the previous dance is now, instantaneously, an active partner in a new dance. What as Third force is now First or Second force. There is no isolated outcome. That’s why you don’t see it because it’s part of another dance.
The dance is contained within certain definite limits, within the range of the dampening field. When I tell you to do something that you’ve never done before, you’re fooling with the dampening field. When you do things you never would have dreamed of doing, when you act like someone you consider to be radically different from you, you’re helping to rupture and to rough up the dampening field. You’re smudging the limits of “you.” Each ordinary system can tolerate only so much excitement, and I’m telling you that for all practical purposes, the level is almost nil. All you have to do is take a look around. Look at the possible sources of excitement in Life, and look at your natural response. You can not tolerate the kind of excitement that the younger generation finds acceptable, if not necessary. Of course, you always have an explanation, “That’s silly, that’s childish,” or, “That’s juvenile.” It is simply that there is an absolute limit to what seems to be “I.” But you can not ignite yourself above the Line without going past the limits of “I.” I keep pushing your limit, but you must eventually see that you’ve got to cut loose and do it for yourself. I could describe This Activity as the ultimate excitement. Or better yet, “All the excitement one man can stand in his lifetime.” What you must do is break through what seems to be one’s “I” to literally break through the physical strictures of your dampening field. What you must do is excite your system to an unknown and impossible degree. You must begin to see that everything you ordinarily do in life repeats itself over and over. Your system seeks only a limited, known level of excitement: you listen to a certain kind of music, watch the same kinds of TV shows… It’s all an attempt to excite the system, but it’s always: “I want excitement, but not enough to humiliate me or make me feel guilty.” The fact is that you can’t do This Activity and still be “you.”
The insides of people aren’t composed of teeny people; everyone’s insides are an electrical process. Everyone is circuitry on the inside. Does this not throw a different light on your internal conflict and feelings of self condemnation? Can you look in your circuitry and see that the messages you take so personally are simply the running of the circuits. Whatever you take personally is what you’re supposed to take personally, including the fact that you take it personally. But for a Few, there are other possibilities, among them being the possibility of becoming smarter than the “I” that takes it all personally.