THE HABITUAL RUTS OF PLEASURE AND SECURITY

The following is a summary, and it is presently being reorganised

The Anthropological Timeline gives a scientific, objectively researched timeline of the ever-increasing pace of life – showing the velocity of change and development – throughout our earth's history ... And then there was man.

Introduction
How i understand our civilisations development and the value and usage of focusing, is as a direct result of my experience with broadband sensing. I have tried to rationalise the ideas, but the full impact may only be accessible by experiencing broadband sensing yourself (see Summary of First Exercises).

There are two main simple (theories or) truths:
1. Wanting always leads to repetitions. Either the repetition of the idea, an actual repetition, or something similar.
2. Wanting is always connected with focusing. The broadband mode is only used occasionally and in a secondary way for doing, wanting, and getting.

The second idea perhaps needs some explanation.

Predatory animals when hunting, use broadband seeing to watch over a limited field of vision, and look for specific changes within this area.

Buzzards looking for prey, watch an open field to look out for small brown or feathered things moving, they're not interested in humans or how the trees are swaying.

Kingfishers watch for ripples or maybe colours under the water ... theres no point in looking at the trees if youre hunting for fish ... There is an amazing short video showing a kingfisher broadbanding at a stretch of water ... periodically focusing on 'things which might be' .. notice how the head must keep still, if the head were moving it wouldn't be able to see movements in the water.

In both these cases an area of the broadband range IS used for doing, wanting, and getting, BUT in both the action is dominated by focusing on and searching for something specific.

The broadband mode is sometimes connected in a secondary way, but focusing is ALWAYS connected with doing, wanting and getting.

The following is a summary of The Amazing Development of Focusing and Beliefs and Their Confirmation.

The Amazing Development of Focusing

Human babies don't have sufficient instinctive talents to survive. First we have to learn – and to learn, first we have to focus. We even have to concentrate : to consciously and actively focus and then coordinate focusing with our bodies, senses, and minds.

We focus on what we want. This is natural and intelligent. Wanting always results in repetitions, either an idea will repeat in our memory, or there will be an actual repetition in practical life. We always want to repeat previous pleasures. And all this is natural and sensible.

Focusing does not necessarily involve concentration. We often focus absent mindedly. But concentrated focusing can be awesome.

We could select ideas and remember them and learn. And as we associated selected ideas, we became clever and creative. Humans processed, collected, and communicated ideas quickly, and we soon learnt to repeat an extraordinary amount of tricks, from chipping the first flint tools, to making fire, and then wheels.

And often as part of a creative process, with music and the arts, humans are at their best. Space travel, internet, ... the list of amazing human achievements is endless, and these are all the results of focused coordination of touch, mind, and external senses.

And as we repeated all the things we wanted, life slowly became more pleasurable and secure. But this inevitably led us to an ever-increasing multiplicity of things we want, with more things to focus on and think about.

So in modern times it's vital to get an early training with concentrated focusing on drawing, reading, and writing, and then later studying specialised subjects.

But the habitual ruts which gave us security and pleasure became self-perpetuating feedback loops. And gradually they multiplied, and the velocity of life increased. Because, very sensibly and naturally, we repeated the things we wanted, and that meant focusing on them.

And the entire process became an habitual rut, a self perpetuating wheel. And this focusing-repeating-learning system dictates not only our abstract understanding, but also our emotions and behaviour, our entire lives are dictated by this approach to and outlook on life. The Amazing Development of Focusing discusses this in detail.

Beliefs and Their Confirmation
Over time, we started focusing more and more on ideas. And from the first ruminations on the meaning behind the sun and the moon, or a flash of lightning, till ''why am I?'' and ''what is death?'', we developed beliefs.

So when humans developed beliefs with Gods and ideologies, the relationship between individuals, groups, and the whole universe, became secure or at least negotiable. Since humans developed beliefs, they gave our lives meaning, they became the central priority for our sense of reality, identity, security, purpose, and even hope. They became our central focus points in life.

And it really didn't matter much what we believed in, as long as everyone in our social group unquestioningly believed in the same thing. Like most other animals, our survival depended on the unquestioned feeling of belonging in a group. And for humans this meant the mutual confirmation of the ideas and beliefs of our tribe.

Human cultures passed ideas and customs down through thousands of generations. And up to a few hundred years ago, even though humans were often hungry and cold, we lived with a social consensus of dress codes, language, ideas, beliefs and opinions.

Our sense of belonging and identity was found within our social group. The communal identity within our group, with each other and in relation to a big picture of the world, was confirmed by each other.

And it felt so good to know who and why we were, that generations of children were reassured as we retold our culture's stories. The stories and beliefs gave people and cultures their integrity, meaning and purpose. And any comparison with neighbouring cultures and their stories, merely reconfirmed each cultures' individual identity.

In ancient cultures, the beliefs united a tribe. And it really didn't matter much if we all believed we were living on the back of the Great Turtle, or, that the stars were the children of the sun and the moon – because for our sense of identity and security, the confirmation of the tribe was more important than the truth.

It's worth stopping there for a moment – the confirmation of the tribe was always far more important than the truth. We don't need to prove that honey tastes good, and we don't need anyone else's opinion about if fire is hot. But in our abstract world, the only way to confirm thoughts is with another being who understands such abstract thoughts.

But slowly, over the last few centuries, we started questioning all our old truths. This was the start of a new era, and now we have lost the mutual confirmation of our social group.

Our beliefs are insecure in a way no human in any previous culture has ever experienced, or even imagined.

The mutual confirmation of our tribe has disintegrated, and with the modern multiplicity of beliefs, there simply isn't enough mutual confirmation to go around, and there never can be. Our modern fight for survival has continued, in the abstract dimension of beliefs, ideas, and opinions.

Beliefs used to unite local cultures; now, in our global world, they divide. Respect for someone else's beliefs, even rejoicing in the variety of modern beliefs, is only a shadow of the mutual, united, unquestioned confirmation of all the members of my local social group.

So, regardless our modern material security, we feel psychologically insecure, . Perhaps we cope admirably, but all the time, we are coping against a form of insecurity which no other animal or pre-modern human has ever experienced or even imagined.

After an astounding million-year-long history of focusing with our thoughts and senses for our survival, our habitual strategy has now led us to a point of critical overload. Our human survival strategy has become self destructive.

And i believe we are collectively suffering the effects of Displacement Activity. This is the name for the illness animals suffer when they feel insecure, and they over compensate with habitual but inappropriate, sometimes self-destructive activities.

There are lots of areas i still question about our displacement actiity. The point is, there must be some sort of displacement, some form of over compensation – every system under stress, works harder to compensate, and then through overwork and friction breaks down  – but i don't know all the ways humans over compensate for their form of collective psychological insecurity. I develop what i think is the main idea in Displacement Activity.

What i'm saying is that our present cultural chaos has all developed through a few thousand years long process of encouraging a one sided use of our actual physical senses. And nowadays we hardly ever sense life or the world in the broadband way any more.

Please continue with The Balance

Back to Chapter 4 : Civilisation's Habitual Ruts