Principle 7 Immediate Action 2 – 2021

Sometimes meditation requires you sit down and close your eyes — but that’s less than half the story. 
 
You can transform your daily life into a profound meditation, and path of awakening, and liberation. 
 
Here’s somethings to consider this week. Besides the opportunity to participate in the weekly experiences, our next meeting will be a chance for an interchange about your thoughts, insights, examples and questions. 
 
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Principle 7. Immediate Action Second Week
If you pursue an end you enchain yourself. If everything you do is realized as an end in itself you liberate yourself.
 
Last time: A New Way of Doing
This time:  Enchainment, Liberation, Four Principles 
and an Animation.
 
Perhaps after meditating on this principle in general you can provide us with a new version that illustrates at least some aspect of it. Perhaps you can also give it a name that captures something of its focus. Or how about an illustrative very short story, saying, image, or joke.
 
Now For Something Completely Different
Here’s that animation (courtesy of Rafael Edwards). If you haven’t seen it before I hope you enjoy it. If you have seen it before please enjoy it again.
 
This Week:
Last week we concentrated on the general structure and scope of this principle. This week we’ll consider  how we applied, or could have applied, this principle in the past. 
Four Principles
General Considerations and Personal Reflections:
Here are some personal reflections. I offer them in the spirit of dialogue and exchange, and look forward to hearing your thoughts about, and experiences with, this principle.
 
I  have mentioned before (as have others) my tendency to confuse the wording of the principle of of Immediate Action with that of certain other principles, among them last weeks (principle 6. Pleasure). I don’t think this is an accident, or something that happens purely by chance
 
Perhaps those mixups shouldn’t be surprising. After all it’s often said that the principles are a structure of ideas. That is, each of the principles needs to be considered in light of the others. It’s a very useful thing to keep in mind. And when considering the principles it also very soon becomes clear that particular principles seem more directly related to others. We’ve talked about this some time  back when noting, for example, how the first few principles deal with our relationship to a process, or the balance of forces in a situation, others seem to be focused on relations within a structure. Continuing in that vein I found myself thinking about those principles which explicitly refer to “enchainment” and “liberation”.
 
By this criteria four principles stand out and they can be thought of as two pairs. First, this month’s principle (7, the principle of Immediate Action) and last month’s (the principle of Pleasure). As you know one is referred to the pursuing of pleasure, and the other the more general case of pursuing of any end. In the same way next month’s principle 9 (Liberty), and principle 10 (Solidarity) so closely related to what people call the Golden Rule. You can see how between these four the limits of our actions are mapped out. 
 
That is you liberate yourself as long as you:
-do not harm your health
-do everything as an end in itself
-do not harm anyone
-treat others as you wish to be treated

  

Or if you prefer, you enchain yourself when you:
-harm your health
-pursue an end
-harm others
– treat others as objects
 
Summarizing further I would say:
You liberate yourself when you remember that you, and all the others are subjectivities, and not things. 
 
Consider:
But this objectification of others necessarily dehumanizes me as well, and so I justify this situation by claiming that it is the consequence of “Passion,” “God,” “A Cause,” “Natural Inequity,” “Fate,” “Society,” and so forth. 
Silo— The Human Landscape
 
Worth Repeating:
The Principle of Immediate Action reminds us that we should learn to benefit from all the intermediate steps or situations that lead to our goals. 
 
Coming Up:
Next week we’ll continue with principle 7 but we will focus our reflections on our present moment. We will try to find examples that illuminate how the principle impact the situations we are living through.
 
Note:
These notes have been posted on Facebook and sent to our email list, and, on my website  www.dzuckerbrot.com 
 
Stay Tuned.