Only One Thing You Can Be Conscious of—Consciousness Itself
The following recordings are from Jan’s final years, when his voice was diminished and he spoke in a low whisper. Some listeners may find these tapes hard to listen to, or difficult to understand. Thus, as another option, transcripts are being made and will be posted.
Otherwise, turn up the volume and enjoy! Those who carefully listened to Jan during this period consider that he spoke plainly and directly to the matter at hand, “pulling out all the stops,” as he understood that these were to be his last messages to his groups, and to posterity.
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Notes by TK
There is only one thing you can be conscious of: consciousness itself. But there are two states of it: the ordinary state of distracted, clouded, awareness of a personal ‘you’ having personal thoughts and interacting with its objects, or, unadorned consciousness of consciousness.
Ordinary consciousness is full of collective concerns—e.g., global warming; starvation in Africa, etc.—that are of no real direct consequence to the individual, and at that level, impossible to cure. That is the basis of man’s ordinary cultural activity, amounting to the endless attempt to ‘fix stuff’—to come up with answers for what only it is aware of. Immediate, local, tangible problems are the only real purview of consciousness; everything else is an illusion for an individual man.
All entertainment is the seeking to avoid, to relieve the mind from the burden of its impotence in illusory collective concerns—those known only to consciousness. The mind spends virtually all its time not knowing what to do, and it will do anything to escape that reality. (40:41) #3168
Notes by DR
Jan Cox Talk 3168 The overwhelming distraction is that there is something else in conscious to contend with like an evil spirit, etc. But there’s only one thing in consciousness that you are aware of and that is consciousness. There is being conscious and there is being non-conscious consciousness. There is ‘you’ and there is your consciousness/mind/thought-ultimately all the same. Your consciousness is full of threats, worries such as ozone depletion or wars, something to be concerned about and it can do absolutely nothing. How does consciousness handle it? It looks outside of itself to other people’s ideas. Consciousness shares the same instincts as the rest of the body but the rest knows what to do when faced with threats. Consciousness finds what other consciousnesses think. There is the origin of all cultures, all writing, songs, and movies. Religions are attempted explanations for those who don’t like scientific ones. Problems that it only is aware. Consciousness found out some substances render it unconscious, x-rays, ether and its related field of surgery, and x-rays were invented. Threats are only in consciousness and it doesn’t know what to do with it.
Find 1 problem that consciousness accepts as an intangible problem for which consciousness has a cure. There is none. Does it make it stop? No, it looks to others, to philosophy, literature, movies. Your consciousness knows what to do with any of the intangible problems it is crammed full of and will use most of its time, and do anything than have to face it. There’s always something: you can go get a can of soup and read the label. It’s in its face. It’s to give consciousness something to do. You know why? Sure you do.
Jan’s Daily Fresh Real News (to accompany this talk)
THINKING YOU KNOW WHAT YOU’RE DOING IN PRISON IS PROOF YOU DON’T
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The Inside Skinny For Those Stripped For Escape
JULY 2, 2004 © 2004: JAN COX
How Mind Fails To Notice Relationships Between Activities Of The Mind:
(Via Literary Definitions).
Novels: Long pieces of fiction.
Reviews Of Novels: Short pieces of fiction.
To ever escape the distorting confinement of the natural born intellect you must recognize the mirror relationship between critical thought about matters in man’s intangible reality and the matter being thought of critically;
without this understanding your mental efforts will remain as a man trying to square up a doorway with a plumb line that is out of whack.
Corollary to this is that ordinary men believe some matters are more deserving of criticism than others (that is): the more serious be the matter, the greater is the need for solemn critique thereof;
but one who has cleared his head and inhales life directly no longer has interest in meaningless graduations of aromas:
shit stinks – and there’s nothing more to be noted.
By words is consciousness imprisoned,
and dunces that they be,
by them men expect to get free.
(“That’s a bit harsh isn’t it?”
“But it’s also true, isn’t it.”)
One benefit of realizing in what a deep daze your mind normally exists
is that you cannot thereafter intentionally make it any worse – intentionally.
Question: How is that?
The Anxiety Of Those Residing In City Structures.
There is always something to be concerned about, both downstairs and upstairs,
(but note that the upstairs stuff is all imaginary).
One man says that although he has not become mentally deranged,
he has managed to make his duodenum neurotic.
A peripatetic drummer would periodically drop in at a monastery and make possible
for those there to temporarily trade their hair shirts and shoes with pebbles
for an unusual beat which would momentarily release them from their self induced, inner doldrums.
One way to combat sleepiness is to knock yourself unconscious.
(“The sad thing is though that you cannot up the stakes to suicide…..
but come to think of it: I guess it’s good to have at least one thing
that is the final word in its field.”)
To himself a man spoke:
“Well dammit! – even if I can’t be more conscious,
why can’t I at least remember that it is possible! – is that too much to ask!?
Damn, damn, damn, damn, dammit!”
Sad in a way that only those struggling to awaken can appreciate how it is
to want a particular thing more than anything else in life –
and forget about the problems of how to achieve it –
most of the time you can’t even remember that you want it.
Ordinary men – no matter how disappointed they may be in their ordinary pursuits – simply have nothing in their lives equal to this experience.
And yet those with the uncommon intellect native to those hungry for enlightenment,
seem in a certain manner to themselves, to be the dumbest of the dumb.
(“Ain’t it a hoot!”)
Easily (after the fact) can ordinary minds accept, even sing the benefits of hardship;
easily being the unwitting nom de guerre for: lack of alternative.
With no goal – there are no set backs –
and even when there are – they can be re named something else.
Failed novels have no father — but criticism, endless mothers.
(“Yes – I did declare my desire to go to Shangri-La,
and true: I have not yet gone there – but! – I pointed it out first!”)
The inerrant test of whether a person is enlightened or not
is if, when they are asked what was going through their mind during some
episode or the other, they give any response other than: “I have no idea.”
Mirrors And Knowledge Of The Secret.
A man-who-knows – casts no reflection (and even if he does – it’s not really him).
When an enlightened man is among cave dwellers —
he seems as shadowy as the next guy.
Smiling insincerity – that is the key to social life in jail (in a herd, in the city, and like that.)
Today’s Genesis Myth.
Immediately after every human being is born,
life tells them what thought is really all about –
then almost immediately – they forget about it, and get on with the business of
being an ordinary human being.
That is why, in routine creation tales, god, as he appears in the original garden of
non conscious paradise, never says to Adam-the-first-man: “Why are you still here!?”
The Singularity Of it All – Ya’ll.
Becoming differently conscious is the only undertaking which, when successful,
is recognized by no one.
A man threw a rock with a note tied round it into the yard of a sage which asked
if his many comments concerning the notion of enlightenment were meant to be encouraging to its pursuit – or as dissuasion from attempting it.
(You know: you can put someone’s eye out, throwing rocks.
“I’d give anything if someone would put MY ‘I’ out!”)
One chap initially thought he had rickets –
then eventually realized he was just becoming aware of his normal neural connections.
Attempting to be more conscious than is normal for your brain is the one area of
human activity in which over doing it is impossible:
the very idea of somehow over doing it is in fact, quite funny.
The less a man understands what is really going on with life,
the more will he try to make a big deal out of being a human.
There is a reason — and it’s not stupidity — for animals’ laissez faire attitude.
A man wrote a sage:
“Can you be a serious sort and still achieve enlightenment?” and the latter replied:
“That would depend on what matters specifically you might feel serious about –
and if I were to ask you to tell me which matters these might be – and you did –
then you’d have your instant proof that you are already way too serious.”
One way to assure your normalcy and routine shaky health
is to determine yourself sick in selective areas.
In the city: if you want to put forth much of a personality,
you’re expected to have personality problems.
Once you get a workable glimpse of what is really going on with life
and thus recognize the challenge before you, there is then only one problem –
one simple little problem,
(and of course the teensy little matter of being able to remember it……………[hardly worth mentioning.])
In the course of living in the city, one man developed a brain tumor –
which grew to be the same size as his mind –
which presented a certain difficulty in having it surgically removed.
Definition: Humility: Ignorance with the air let out.
To be differently conscious (in that special way so adored by the certain few)
is to be calm & quiet amidst much noise & confusion.
“And this is true both externally and internally!?”
Quite so – quite so.
Seeking the counsel of something in you other than the normal consciousness
of your brain is like tossing a penny in a canyon,
and getting back a thousand dollar bill.