A Dictionary of Realness

Just in case you’ve wondered what the hell I was talking about…

This glossary gives ‘simple’ definitions of the terms used throughout the free e-book Dialogue / Ego and Personal Revolutions: A Short Course in Realness. These definitions are specific to my personal ‘philosophy’ so may be different to academic definitions etc. that you’ve picked up previously. This page is designed to give you a good overview of any ideas that can help you to live a better, more real life.


Action

Forward momentum, rooted in the way things are (whether we are aware of it or not). The only Real cure for anything.

Acceptance

In relation to Dialogue, Unreal acceptance is something that we chase from others because of our own insecurities.  This process of chasing external validation blocks our view of the Truth and also stops us sharing it (this form of acceptance is one of the Class A Drugs). This is opposed to the Real acceptance of either the Inevitable or ourselves that makes life worth living in the form of our Realness (the final lesson of ‘Personal Revolutions: A Short Course in Realness‘).

Anxiety

The feeling that occurs when we find ourselves lost in the gap between Expectation and Result or when our Expectations about the future stop us from acting. If we feel consistent anxiety, it is often because we are consistently taking erroneous Ideas about ourselves out into Reality and causing unnecessary Friction for ourselves.

Applause

A desire to impress others with our own self-perceived ‘brilliance’ – if we give into this Desire too frequently, we are giving ourselves over to the Ego’s Pride and blocking our view of the Truth. One of the Class A Drugs.

Approval

A self-imposed block to Real Communication or Self-acceptance that arises from a desire to hide anything that may be seen by others in a negative light such as Opinions that go against the status quo. One of the Class A Drugs.

Assumption

Any hypothesis, Opinion, or Concept that is taken as a given and brought to the arena of our lives without digging beneath the surface of or questioning.

Attach

Hang our Identity upon some Fragmented thing.

Attitude

The final product of carrying a series of conceptual and experiential components such as emotional resilience, beliefs, ideas, and knowledge. Dialogue is about communicating with an attitude of Realness.

Awareness

An Openness to what currently surrounds us, both internally and externally.

Biological System

An organisational System that is structured like a biological organism with a series of ‘elites’ acting as a ‘brain’ at the top of a hierarchy and feeding instructions to the unthinking, insentient ‘limbs’ at the bottom.

Biological Wiring

The way we evolved to function in the environment in which our species first came to be on earth.

Black and White Thinking

Viewing the world and the things/people within it through the lens that they are either one thing or another with no in between. This either/or approach is what happens when we’re unaware that our value Judgements (‘good’, ‘bad’, etc.) of Reality have nothing to do with an achromatic and indifferent reality in itself.

Blind Trinity

The Fear, Pride, and Desire of the Ego.

Certainty

The erroneous belief that our Conceptual understanding of ourselves, The World, Reality, or the people within in it can give a picture of it all that is 100% accurate without any room for improvement.

Change

The Inevitable state of things as Experienced as Fragmented creatures within a fragmented physical universe. Though there is no change in the Whole overall, we experience it in a way that means we have to readjust our Points of Views based on where we currently stand within it. The Ego fears change because it always brings more Reality (the opposite of ego).

Chaos

Anything that enters our lives from beyond the ordered Point of View that we construct for ourselves based on the limited Knowledge we acquire from our limited Perception of Reality as a Whole.

Character

The depth of our relationship with Reality as it is; Personality, in contrast, is often an expression of our Desire to escape from this reality. The more we push ourselves to be close to the Edge via reality, the more of our Illusions we lose, and the more character we cultivate.

Choice

The ever present option of making things better for ourselves by moving towards more Realness in some way.

Class A Drugs

The addictive ego-strokes of Acceptance, Applause, Approval, all of which block our access to Reality and therefore Truth.

Closure

The self-enforced deception that everything makes Conceptual sense about something in the past.

Collective Creative Intelligence

The Intelligence that emerges as a by-product of human beings coming together in their Realness and exploring a given topic or Problem together. It is the most effective way for us to come together and make connections between things in order to find solutions and new Insight.

Communication

The Process of sharing Awareness with oneself, others, and Reality.

Concept

A part of our Mental Content serving as the building blocks of our Interpretations of Reality. Concepts are at best only ever signposts to reality; some point more closely to it than others, but no concept can ever be 100% Real in itself. As we need to make use of concepts to make our way through The World (which is just a collection of concepts), the best thing we can do for ourselves is ensure that the concepts we carry are more real than not. This removes unnecessary Friction from our lives and prevents Frustration and Misery in the long-term.

Creative Thrivalist System

A System discussed in Personal Revolutions #68: Systems (Interdependence) / Silos (Independence) that is structured around Human-shaped assumptions of Reality. It assumes that human beings thrive when the barriers to real Creativity are minimised and as many people within the system have done the work required to Grow Real.

Creative Intelligence

Intelligence that brings in the whole of human beings (intellect, instinct, intuition, imagination, emotion, etc.) whilst also acknowledging Interdependence over the Ego’s illusory Independence. This approach to Creativity ensures that we are more Open to inspiration, acting upon it, and making the world more Real.

Creativity

An Attitude of Openness that allows us to perform Actions that lead to more Realness in the world. Requires an acceptance of Interdependence over Independence to find inspiration for truly creative acts.

Curiosity

An Attitude of Openness that encourages us to keep digging into The World so that we can build within it, instead of convincing ourselves we’ve found it and trying to tear it down because we have forgotten our connection to it and so Fear it instead.

Death

The destruction of the Ego.

Debate

An approach to Communication that focuses on proving the validity of the Truth we think we have already found and showing that anybody who disagrees with it is ‘wrong’. Debate is opposed to Dialogue or Real Communication.

Desire

Anything that stops us from being grateful for the way things currently happen to be.  In relation to the Blind Trinity, Desire is our craving to be seen in the light of a certain Self-image that we have constructed and turned over to the Ego in reaction to our own unresolved Shame about our Realness.

Dialogue

A Real approach to Communication that asks us to communicate with ourselves first and foremost so that we can manage the Fragmentary barriers we carry within ourselves to our own Realness and then attempt to see the realness within those we communicate with.

Drama

Games that make people feel good about themselves in the short-term by feeding into the Ego.

Duality

The notion that opposition is the natural order of things because we believe that the Fragments we use to Perceive Reality are reality itself. This is manifest in an Intellect that thinks in fragmented, Black and White dichotomies, such as good/bad, up/down, me/you, instead of Whole relationships. This helps us make ordered sense of the Chaos of our lives but is part of the Veiled Veil we project over Reality, not reality itself (see also: Concept).

Edge

The place where we are most likely to reveal ourselves to ourselves so that we can take new learning into our lives in the form of our Realness. To find the edge, we have to live in such a way that we are able to consciously dive into the gap between Expectation and Result, thus creating a better relationship with Chaos and Uncertainty.

Ego

The opposite of Reality and any of the evolved Fragmentary tools that we use to try and convince ourselves that the Illusions about ourselves and The World are true.

Event

A designated moment in an overall Relationship between things (aka a Process). Events only exist in our understanding as the Fragments we project onto processes in order to make Sense of them.

Expectation

Assumptions about the future. Expectations cause most of the Misery in our lives due to the gap between Expectation and Result bringing a state of discomfort or Frustration when expectation doesn’t land in the right place. The more we Attach to our expectations, the more miserable we will be as the gulf between Illusion and Reality is wider and so we have further to fall. A shortcut to living ‘happier’ lives is teaching ourselves to have Realistic Expectations about ourselves and the world.

Expectation and Result

The gap where Chaos is most likely to enter our lives as our Ideas about Reality meet reality itself. Forcing ourselves to appreciate and work consciously with this gap allows us to learn what we need to know to be able to find our Edge, move through it, and Grow Real as we rid ourselves of our Illusions.

Experience

Whatever we are currently Aware of or going through. We have no choice but to go through whatever we are experiencing if we have any hope of making sense and learning from it, so resisting it makes our lives more difficult than they need to be. Just because we are experiencing something doesn’t mean it is Real, but taking a good look at it is the only way to Grow Real in ourselves and The World.

Exploration

The act of looking more deeply into things which requires the Attitude of Curiosity. We do not need an aim or set Goal for our explorations, just a promise to ourselves to set out and see what we find. We can’t explore the world unless we are Open to it.

Fear

In the service of the Ego, fear is anything that stops us from expressing our Realness or moving towards the Edge and anything that might reveal this realness to us. Some fear is Instinctual and has evolved to protect us (like if we see a dangerous animal or something). This kind of instinctual fear is nothing to worry about as it has evolved to help us survive (unless it goes AWOL and merges with the ego to create a constant state of Anxiety).

Flow

The feeling of being completely Present that comes from removing the Fragmentary barriers keeping us from the Edge. Examples might be riding a motorbike, climbing a mountain, having sex, or simply dedicating ourselves to the Process living in a Real way day after day.

Flux

The Process of constant and inexorable Change that unfolds in Reality as we experience it through Fragmented perceptions and interpretations. Aligning ourselves with flux means that we are less likely to lose our Realness as we attempt to cling to the Veiled Veil.

Fragmentation

Anything that blocks our view of the Whole or which acts as an Illusory barrier that prevents us from Flowing with it. We need fragmentation to be able to function in The World but when we Identify with the fragmentation we carry it brings unnecessary Friction into our lives. Examples: opinions, emotions, concepts, expectations, anything withe the end result of breaking things down instead of building something Real.

Friction

The state of dissonance, Frustration, or Anxiety that enters our lives when we cling to Fragmentary ideas or beliefs that are not Real. Clinging to these ideas with too much stubbornness means that there is a constant tension between ourselves and Reality as a whole. Only by letting go can we start Flowing again and find a solid foundation on which to build. Some people spend their whole lives living with this friction and are never ‘happy’.

Frustration

The feeling that occurs when our Expectations are constantly misaligned with the Reality in front of us and we aren’t ready to face it yet because it triggers unresolved Shame.

Goal

Something to move towards. Some goals are Real, because they are rooted predominantly in Reality; some goals are Unreal, because they are rooted in the Ego and its Ideals so carry us away from ourselves.

God

A fancy word for ‘Chaos‘ as we experience it in the gap between Expectation and Result.

Grow Real

To go through the Process of ridding ourselves of our Illusions about who we are and what The World is in Reality. This allows us to build with Inevitable or inescapable limits or to smash through the Self-limiting Beliefs and ideas that hold us back.

Growth

The Process by which we unlearn all of the Fragmentary illusions that keep us from ourselves as we are in our Realness. Real Growth is what happens when we face Reality on its own terms so that we can build upon our own. This type of growth is always open to all of us, if we are able to find our Edge, but usually finds us in times of difficulty, as this is when we are most likely to push through Obstacles, uncovering what is Real and what is mere Illusion as we are forced into the gap between Expectation and Result.

Heroism

The feeling that either ourselves or somebody else is doing something worth fighting for. Real heroism is about moving The World towards more Realness; Unreal heroism is about creating drama so we can keep our Ego in place.

Heuristic

A ‘Rule of Thumb’ that we carry into a situation as a shortcut to making Sense of it based on previous Experience (though not necessarily our own). Heuristics often help us greatly but they are still not necessarily the Reality of the situation before our very eyes.

Hide

To live in denial of something, instead of facing it and moving towards making it Real.

HOW

The way in which we choose to Communicate. Ultimately, we can choose to communicate in a way that is Real, or a way that is Unreal.

Humanity

Our True nature. Being out of touch with one’s humanity leads to Frustration and then Misery.

Human-shaped World

A World that has been designed based on Assumptions about human beings that are aligned with Reality, not just our Ideals or Fears about it. Designing a human-shaped world ultimately means that we design Systems that serve us, not systems that we end up serving at the expense of our Humanity. These systems aren’t constrained by our Self-Limiting Beliefs about ourselves but nor are they so Neurotic that they have no foundation in Reality.

Ideas

Collections of Concepts that trigger a jolt of excitement within us when we make new connections between things. Worthless without some kind of Action (because they only ‘exist’ in the World of Symbols without it).

Ideals

Things that we want to be True and attempt to move towards. When our ideals are rooted in the Ego and its insecurity we move further away from Reality; when our ideals are rooted in our Realness, we take a foundation of things as they are and build something wonderful upon it.

Identify

To think that one is a particular Fragment or collection of fragments instead of just seeing that these fragments are something we have.

Identity Politics

What happens when people believe that their opinions about themselves hold more Truth than the Realness of themselves or others.

Illusion

Any belief that blocks our view of ourselves, others, or Reality because it helps us to keep the Ego in place. The ego is ultimately constructed of illusions in the form of the Veiled Veil and the Fragments it is ‘made’ of.

Independence

The erroneous belief that everything is separate or disconnected from everything else. This kind of independence is what happens when the brain’s evolved Fragmentary thinking style is Projected out into The World and treated as being Real. It is the opposite of Interdependence and involves seeing Reality as a series of ‘things’ instead of a series of Relationships.

Inevitable

Whatever currently can’t be avoided about Real human life (death, problems, change, etc.).

Influence

The power that we have to Change things about ourselves, The World, or Reality around us. It is important to note that we always have some degree of influence over ourselves or our situations, even if only internally, but we do not have the power of total Creation as Reality creates a certain set of conditions for us to work our influence within. If we think we can ‘create’ everything in our lives, we become Neurotic; if we accept our influence, we can work with what is Inevitable as it unfold in the ‘Chaos‘ of the gap between Expectation and Result. Real Creativity is about having enough influence over ourselves to remain Open.

Insight

Any flash of Truth that challenges the Concepts we have been allowing to limit our view of what is true in the Whole.

Instinct

Any motivation that is rooted in the body and the body alone. Instincts have evolved to protect us, we need to tune into them to feel alive, but they hold back our Growth if we only ever succumb to them. Our happiness is a product of managing this Biological Wiring and the Social Programming we have evolved and been exposed to so that we can live in the World of Relationships.

Intellect

Our ability to make sense of Conceptual information and create Interpretations of Reality. An amazing blessing when we see it as a tool, or a curse when we allow it to take over our lives by constantly using it to uphold the Ego and its denial of reality.

Intelligence

Your ability to respond to Reality in a Creative way. Often mistaken for ‘memory’ in the form of an ability to remember trivial facts and figures with no relation to real Experience or the way things actually are. Intelligence requires Openness to be Real.

Interdependence

The Reality that everything is connected, even if the apparent distance between ‘things’ is disparate.

Interpretation

Our best possible understanding of something based on what we have Perceived and Conceptualised of its Reality. Unfortunately, even our best interpretations are clouded by the Veiled Veil.

Intention

In the service of our Realness, an intention is an itch we can’t get rid of that leads us towards Wholeness in the form of our authentic, or self-actualised, self. In the service of the Ego, intentions are immediate Desires based on the Judgement that we are not living according to the Idealised image of ourselves that we constructed to hide from our own Shame.

Judgement

The Process of attempting to bring whatever stands before us into the Veiled Veil of Duality by treating our positive/neutral value-based Ideas about it as the Reality of whatever is in question. Ultimately, the Ego is one big judgement but no judgement is Certain and so when we Identify with ego we lose ourselves in our Realness.

Knowing

Any Awareness that we have about Reality that isn’t purely Conceptual or Idealistic because it is rooted in more than just the Intellect.

Knowledge

Things that we ‘know’ only in Conceptual Interpretation.

Magic Bullet

Any offer of a Panacea that will solve every Problem in the world. Impossible because The World will always just be one big problem.

Make Real

To take a negative of difficult situation or Obstacle and learn something from it that allows us to increase our connection to our own Realness.

Mechanistic System

Any System designed by human beings that treats the majority of the people within it as being insensate cogs in the machine. These systems are Unreal because they are built around a ‘fixed’ view of human beings and force people into moulds that remove their Humanity at the expense of linear Processes results that are Outcome-dependent.

Meditation

Any Process that allows you to tune into the Present moment and notice what you notice about yourself, The World, and Reality. The ‘classic’ version involves sitting still and breathing in some way, but anything that shows you the Edge of yourself could technically get you in the same state (riding a motorbike, having sex, listening to music, etc.).

Mental Content

The clouds that float by within the inner experience of ourselves and the world (Concepts, emotions, Expectations, whatever).

Misery

A state of living in extreme Unreality, thus making us feel bad about our own Realness and The World. Misery is what happens when you allow the Friction you carry to lead to endless Frustration and eventually snap.

Neurotic

To carry the erroneous belief that Order precedes Chaos or to Hide from Reality because we find it Painful or believe that reality is a source of our demise, not a furnace for our creation in the form of real Growth. Being neurotic in this way is fundamentally rooted in the ideas that Stasis is Truth and a life on earth without limits is possible, whereas both of these ideas are major sources of Frustration in our lives. Any time we move away from reality and towards Ego/Fragmentation we are trying to live according to Ideas or Concepts disconnected from what is Real; when we do this we are epitomising ‘neurotic’ with the result of stunting our own Growth.

Object

Anything that the attention of your subjective Experience passes over. For example, if you’re looking at a ‘tree’ then it is an object of your experience and you are the Subject.

Obstacle

Anything that seems to get in the way of where we think we want to go but which is actually a foundation for getting to where we really want to be (in the form of our Realness).

Object-Subject Boundary

The Illusory boundary that we place between Objects and Subjects when we are lost in assuming that the Veiled Veil of limited Perception and Knowledge is the way things actually are. In Reality, Objects and Subjects are part of the same Interdependent System and therefore depend on each other. For example, if you are a subject looking at the object of a ‘tree’, then the experience you have depends on where you are in Time, Space, and Causality, as well as the mental Representation your brain shows you over the actual thing-in-itself. That object might exist in some form but not in the way you experience it without ‘you’ being in the equation.

One System + One System = One System

The understanding that if everything is a part of the same System then there is only one Relationship that we Fragment for convenience and survival.

Openness

The Attitude of living with as few Fragmentary blocks to our Realness and Reality as possible. More often than not, the things that are holding us back from Real connection to ourselves and by extension the reality around us are Self-limiting Beliefs and ideas that are fragments we have picked up somewhere outside of ourselves. Living with openness allows The World in reality to open to us and engenders Creativity because we’re living beyond our outdated Assumptions about life.

Opinions

Something that you have, not that you are (as David Bohm said).

Order

Any story that we tell ourselves to explain the Chaos that surrounds us. This doesn’t mean that ‘order’ doesn’t exist, but it does mean that it is usually a Projection of our thoughts out into The World and, if Certain, always a Conceptual Illusion because in a Reality experienced in Flux nothing can remain the same and measurement will only ever be 99.999% accurate at best.

Outcome-dependence

A Judgement of something’s value based only on the results that it gets. For example, if you are chasing a promotion and your Self-image depends on getting it, you have become outcome-dependent.

Outcome-independence

Appreciating either the value of yourself or something else based on your relationship with its Realness over results. For example, if you are chasing that promotion and don’t get it, you still have a healthy relationship with yourself (because you have found your realness).

Pain

An Inevitability that shows us where we have room to Grow Real. If we can move to the other side of the pain, Frustration, and discomfort that we find ourselves feeling in either Dialogue or our lives themselves, we can live with less Friction between ourselves and Reality. Pain is a signal, not a command, but many of us choose to always see it as a command to run away from whatever seems to be its source – sometimes, we do need to run away, but often the only way out and into a better life for ourselves is to go through it.

Panacea

A fancy word for a Magic Bullet. The more Neurotic we are, the more we want there to be a panacea for all our ails and the more disappointment, Frustration, and eventual Misery we set ourselves up for in the long-term.

Patterns

Behavioural repetitions that we can notice over the course of our lives, especially in our Relationships with others, but also in the way we chase after the things that we think will save us in some way. In general, these patterns are rooted in our unresolved ‘stuff’ from childhood and the shame that makes us run towards Ego over our Realness. If we don’t become aware of these patterns (e.g. falling in love with unavailable people so we don’t have to really commit, chasing easy goals instead of challenging ourselves because we fear failure, etc.) we will repeat them until the day we die and be more likely to die in Misery.

Perception

Whatever our Fragmented bodies allow us to sense before we try and Interpret them with Concepts/Knowlegde.

Personal Revolution

The Process of Growing Real by either putting oneself in a process of ridding oneself of one’s Illusions by finding the Edge, or  by being placed in a highly challenging situation that exposes the gap between one’s Ego and Reality in the gap between Expectation and Result. The final lesson of a Personal Revolution is always the same: an acceptance of one’s Realness and a shift to living predominantly from its foundation.

Personality

A set of Ideas that we choose to Identify with based on our desired Self-image and the way we want to be seen by others. Personality is distinguished from Character which is the depth of our relationship with Reality – in the form of how prepared we are to face it – not our ideas about it alone.

Point of View

A story that we tell ourselves based on the limited information we have about ourselves, The World, and Reality through the lens of the Veiled Veil. More often than not, this story is edited to make ourselves feel better about ourselves in our Heroism. Though we need points of view to function as human beings, we can brainwash ourselves and limit our growth by clinging to them with Certainty in order to avoid facing ourselves and our Shame.

Premise

Any Assumption that we feed into an argument to reach some kind of conclusion.

Presence

The sensation of connecting to the foundation of our own Realness, living from the inside out, and being in the moment. Presence is a state of high-level Awareness that allows us to be more responsive to ourselves so that we can better respond to others, The World, and Reality around us.

Pride

The Unreal version of pride is a product of being so certain about our own Certainty that we lose touch with Reality and get lost in the Ego. Real ‘pride’ is based in unwavering Self-Acceptance, is Outcome-independent, and keeps us Growing Real. The unreal version prevents us growing real because it keeps us clinging to an addiction to self-sourced ego strokes.

Principle of Charity

The principle of seeking the Truth in what people share with us instead of simply tearing it to pieces based on initial Judgment.

Problem

A negative Interpretation of an inevitable Obstacle when, in Reality, the main problem is thinking we have problems by Judging whatever we are going through.

Process

A series of Events that lead to a causal result. Everything that happens is a process, though we often lack the information to understand every step along the way and therefore have to rationalise or even deceive ourselves in order to trick ourselves into feeling we have Closure and that everything makes Sense.

Projection

The art of seeing in others or The World around us what we are trying to Hide about ourselves from ourselves in Reality. This is one of the Ego’s defence mechanisms that allows us to keep it in place and prevent ourselves from pushing through the Edge of whatever Pain or Shame we carry in ourselves  so we can Grow Real.

Real

Anything that is as it is in Truth. The Problem is that sometimes the things we think ‘is’ are just the things we show ourselves because of our Fears about Reality. This unfortunate belief is rooted in the Idea that reality is harmful in some way, when actually, the closer we move towards uncovering it, the more solid the foundation on which we build the rest of our lives will be. In relation to human behaviour, ‘Real’ refers to any intention that is rooted in Wholeness over Fragmentation, and therefore reality over Ego.

Real Communication

The way of Communicating in a way that is rooted in a foundation of our Realness and which acknowledges that other people are capable of communicating from their realness in the same way. (See: Dialogue).

Real Human Being

A human being who lives in relation to their nature and the nature of things as they actually are in Reality. This is opposed to a ‘person’ who lives primarily according to the Ideas about themselves, The World, and reality instead of their true experience of themselves without Judgement.

Realistic Expectations

Expectations that prepare us for our own Realness and the Reality that surrounds us. Realistic Expectations help us to align ourselves with Flux over Stasis and prepare us to deal with the positive and negative Change in our lives. Carrying Realistic Expectations also allows us to live with less of the unnecessary Friction that eventually leads to Misery.

Reality

The collective Inevitabilities of life as far as we know and experience it as Fragmented beings in a fragmented World: death, change, problems, obstacles, conflict and whatever else.

Realness

The greatest understanding of whatever Truth you currently carry about yourself and the most unshakeable foundation for building yourself and your life upon.

Reflection

Anything that reminds us of the past or our ideas about it in the present.

Relationship

A connection between things. The universe is one big relationship having a relationship with itself.

Relevance

Anything that will move a Dialogue towards the Truth. Understanding the difference between what is relevant  within the dialogue, as opposed to our Desires about it, based on the needs of our own Ego is vital to being able to communicate in a Real way.

Representation

A version of something that we carry in our heads alone. If we see a ‘tree’, we are seeing our brain’s representation of it, not the ‘tree’ in itself.

Revolution

Any Process that fundamentally changes our approach to living as Real human beings in a real Human-shaped World. Revolution happens when some kind of Event shows Humanity on a mass scale that the gap between our Interpretations, or Expectations of Reality and reality itself is wider than we ever imagined. Revolution can happen on a personal, social, and universal scale.

Schema

The way we have organised the Concepts that we carry about ourselves, The World, and Reality into sets of Ideas or mental models that help us explain things and motivate us to behave in Certain way. Breaking these schemas allows us to break the unhealthy, or Unreal, Patterns we have been living out so that we can Grow real.

Self-limiting Beliefs

Any beliefs that keep us from acknowledging our potential in the form of our Realness.

Sense

A story that is satisfactory enough not to cause too much dissonance or Frustration between ourselves and Reality.

Self-acceptance

An honest understanding of where we currently happen to be in relation to where we want to be in the future. This kind of self-acceptance is a foundation on which to keep building our lives without Judgement, because it is rooted in our Realness and Reality. It is not an excuse to stop living our lives, by giving into Stasis, or to rationalise our Shame away instead of facing it as an Illusion.

Self-image

An idol of ourselves that we place between our Realness and Reality in order to function in The World. If our self-image is built upon Realistic Expectations we will have less Friction in our lives, get more done, and be ‘happier’ in the long-term.

Self-mastery

The healthiest possible relationship between our Biological Wiring and the Social Programming that we allow ourselves to be influenced by.

Shame

The feeling that we are fundamentally ‘wrong’ in some way, have done something ‘wrong’, or that what we are about to do is ‘wrong’. The more shame we carry about our Realness, most often because of how it was received in our childhood, the more likely we are to run towards the Ego. In Reality, there is no shame, as ‘wrong’ and ‘right’ are value Judgements and Duality does not exist. Healthy ‘shame’, can bring people together by showing us that our intentions move away from Wholeness; unhealthy shame stops human beings from living with healthy boundaries and Growing Real  by locking them in a web of Fragmentation.

Should

Any external idea about an appropriate way of living that we take on as our own without question or looking at in alignment with our own Insight. A major source of Social Programming.

Social Programming

Any Ideas that have taken root from outside ourselves and which block our view of our Realness, instead of leading us towards it.

Sociocultural System

A System that allows individuals to have autonomy etc. but which is limited by seeing human beings as more Intellectual and Interpretational than Creative.

Stasis

The erroneous Assumption that it is possible for anything to remain the same other than the Whole in itself.

Subject

Anything that is able to experience Objects.

Sub-personality

Minor parts of our overall Personality that exists because they once helped us to survive in a specific situation, relationship, or environment. Some sub-personalities are long since expired but we keep attempting to breathe life into them and end up bringing Friction into our lives because we have over-identified with them.

Symbols

The linguistic, Conceptual, and cognitive content of our mental experience.

System

Any Relationship between discernible parts and Processes that form other relationships.

‘The World’

Your collective Ideas about the planet and how it operates. The World is unreal because it is a pure Interpretation based in Fragments of the Veiled Veil (nobody can have, be, or understand the whole of it in Reality).

Thing

Anything that our brains allow us to perceive within Time, Space, and Causality that we treat as a separate entity to ourselves because we have forgotten or are unaware of the Illusory nature of the Object-Subject Boundary and the Reality of Interdependence.

Time, Space, and Causality

The Fragmented patterns that our fragmented bodies project upon Reality as part of the Veiled Veil we use to make Sense of it.

Trust

The idea that Relationships between people can lead to more Realness as they are fundamentally rooted in it.

Uncertainty

The only ‘certain’ thing due to living out our lives in the Veiled Veil and the gap between Expectation and Result.

Unhealthy

Anything Unreal.

Unreal

Any intention that causes somebody to move towards Fragmentation or anything that is rooted predominantly in Ego.

Veiled Veil

The combination of limited Perception and limited Knowledge that keeps us from wholes in Reality. Human beings live behind this ‘Veiled Veil’ at all times, because we exist within Fragmented bodies, but we can peek behind it if we blur the Object-subject Boundary. Remembering what we see here allows us to live with more Realness on a day to day basis as it allows us to bring more of the Whole into our lives and have a Real foundation on which to build.

WHAT

The content of our Communication.

Wholeness

The totality of everything in Truth beyond Fragments.

Whole System

A System taken as a whole Relationship instead of numerous Fragmented parts treated as ‘Whole‘. Shifts us into thinking in terms of Interdependence and therefore Reality.

World of Necessity

The World as it is according to biological and physical Inevitability as we Experience it as biological Fragments on a fragmented planet.

World of Relationships

The Reality we live in when we are able to manage our Biological Wiring and Social Programming in order to bridge the World of Necessity and the World of Symbols.

WHY

Our reason or Intention for Communicating.

World of Symbols

The World as conceptualised in Intellect, language, or Ideals alone. We need Symbols to make sense of Reality and construct our Points of View, but, like Concepts, symbols are only signposts to reality, not reality itself.

 

This page will continually be updated at: olianderson.co.uk/glossary


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#145: Edge / Centre (from Personal Revolutions: A Short Course in Realness)

Taken from Personal Revolutions:  A Short Course in Realness by Oli Anderson


Force yourself to the edge once in a while, so you can get a better view of the centre. Feel the fear of living beyond yourself, but don’t be afraid of it; push yourself to the very limits of who you think you are and what you think you know and understand in order to find out for sure. Look for similarity over difference so that you can create connection, but seek diversity over sameness so that you can broaden your horizons. Sharpen your perceptions by stepping away from the bubble of what is ‘safe’ and familiar and seeing how far you can go without popping it. We can either grow complacent or grow strong, and to grow strong you have to force yourself to move in a direction that may initially be uncomfortable in the eyes of the ego. Allow yourself to go to the edge without necessarily being edgy; allow yourself to force yourself there; the truth resides at the edge, not in the centre, and the end of who you think you are is where you actually begin (see #143: Strength / Confidence).

Much of what has been said in Personal Revolutions about the state of the world and its reality is fairly bleak. It’s a place of infinite boundaries and fragmentations between things and people; a place of masks that are either forced upon people, or ripped off of their faces when they least expect it; a place where you will be dragged onto the dance floor, whether you’re prepared to dance or not; and where, at the end of the game, you’ll be swept away and forgotten about whatever happens. Everything preys on everything else; everything is dead, or dying, or trying to die more quickly, and, so, it’s hardly surprising that, with these conditions to contend with, we try to build cocoons for ourselves to live in. But, in reality, a cocoon is only really worth a damn if it allows a butterfly to emerge; anything else is just a bubble waiting to burst.

The only thing that can keep you from ‘flowing’ is your ego, because the ego is unreal, and reality is constantly flowing; living on your edge is the product of riding out the wave of momentum built by diving into the sea of creative tension that arises between awareness of your current reality and the passion for your future self and reality. The edge is the tipping point that pushes you out of what you think you are and into the state of flow that energises all that you do, allowing you to grow more fully into realness of yourself within a better version of your world. Much of this has been discussed in other Revolutions, such as in #59: Vision / Blindness or #119: Potential / Present; indeed, one of the major themes running throughout this whole ‘Course in Realness’ is that for us to keep growing in the direction of our values and who we are in our ‘heart of hearts’ we have to keep pushing through our comfort zone, breaking through the edge of who we think we are in the illusory stasis of symbols, so that we can become who we want to be in necessity (see #140: Broken Heart / Closed Heart).

Much of what is relevant here is linked to the way that we communicate, both with ourselves and the world around us. To get to your edge, you have to realise that what you cling to as your ‘centre’ – if you listen to your ego, at least – is really just a collection of conceptual patterns that have helped you to survive and make sense of the world previously, and as concepts are removed from reality, you are clinging to nothing. Learn to manage your ego; learn to see it as a house that is constantly undergoing renovation, rather than a perfect palace that has been completed. To move in the right direction, we must be able to let go of the wrong one when the time comes. What is phenomenal, or unreal, about us must be like water that moves around a rock, whereas whatever realness in us observes this unfolding must be like the rock itself (see #52: Wholeness / Fragmentation).

Learn to detach yourself from what you think you know by exposing yourself to the things that you either don’t know or that stand in direct opposition to your current conceptual knowledge base. Learn to detach yourself from what you think you can do, by exposing yourself either to competition from those that are also skilled in the same area, or by forcing yourself to do the things that you are currently unskilled at and want to grow into. None of this will be easy; much of it will be downright painful. But whether you win or lose is irrelevant, all that really matters is the sensation of being fully-immersed in yourself and the world as you influence a creative tension that arises from forcing both yourself and the world to its current edge. Refuse to conform to the pressure of ideas about what already is; create new pressures both on yourself and the world to make them real. This is edge and edge is where the healthiest growth takes place (see #1: Physical Laws / Sociocultural Laws).

Accept nothing at face-value. Promise yourself that you’ll always dig a little deeper and that you’ll always look beneath the surface. When everybody else is discussing the words on the page, promise yourself that you’ll tap into the subtext, and read between the lines. All of the surface level details of daily life and experience, all the codes and conventions that we are expected to follow and conform to, pull you back into the centre of the cultural narrative. Refuse to buy into the empty symbolism, the false modesty, or the shared mask of etiquette. By all means, follow the crowd when that’s what you have to do, but avoid the mistaken belief that moving into this centre is what is essential for you to be fulfilled. If it isn’t real it can never fill anything.

We are all born on the edge and, for us to live real, we have to learn to accept the lessons that the edge has to teach us, and to share the fruits of these lessons upon the great banquet table in the centre. The centre is forever changing, as is the edge that we may happen to be viewing it from. It is naïve to expect an invitation to the banquet each and every day that the festivities unfold; sometimes, you might be invited but unable to make it; sometimes, life will sneak up on you and kick you back to the edge of the arena, forcing you to crawl back. Just make sure that you are unattached to your place in the centre whilst you do have it and that, when you are thrust back to the edge for a while, you are able to learn what you can on the way back. The vicissitudes of life are ups and downs, but they are also ins and outs; sometimes, we will be deep in it and seated at the table with the best of them; sometimes, we will be left to stand in the cold and look in through the window. Never take anything for granted, always be ready to bear the brunt of the cold (see #83: Solitude / Loneliness).

Diversity is the key that opens the door to the edge; constantly be working to expand your social networks, seeking out the edge of yourself whenever you can. If all of your friends, allies, and associates share the same opinions as you then seek out some additional friends, allies, and associates. If most of the people in your social circle share the same limits to their levels of self-belief, then start to broaden the circle. Associate with people from different cultures and religious backgrounds, talk to your enemies like human beings, and see what makes them tick. Seek and sniff out the basic similarities between all human beings, by avoiding the trap of being surrounded by people that feel safe, but lack incompleteness and distinction; remember that the people who can teach you the most are usually the rawest as hell and the most rough around the edges. Seek out and sip the new wine of diverse views and shared experiences that lead all of us closer to the shared truth our human situation; get into a dialogue with yourself and the whole of the world, see where it takes you, because it can only take you towards reality (see #32: Dialogue / Debate).

We all have limits prescribed by our current skill levels and experience. What makes a difference in our lives is becoming aware of these limits and pushing back at them instead of having them push us down – this process of pushing through is to live at the edge. Many of the limits that we impose upon ourselves have been predetermined by the ego’s assumptions and expectations about ourselves and the world, much of which comes from the misinformation of cultural conditioning, or opinions, of others. If we want to change ourselves, we have to change our experience of ourselves, and the only way to do this is to provide ourselves with evidence that we can find the edge, push it, and integrate it with the rest of our realness. And, as is true with ourselves, so can be said of the world: those who are currently pushing the world to its limits have usually pushed themselves to the limits first (see #100: World Class / Local Hero).

Don’t fear the edge, embrace it. This is the place where we are either made or broken into pieces, but it is always the place where we find ourselves and what is most real. The centre may feel like a safe haven and, yes, we all need this at some time in our lives, but don’t become so consumed by the comfort offered that you become complacent and lock yourself in a cage of your own design. Push yourself out through yourself, into, and then through the world. There is fear that comes with the uncertainty, but there is also a buzz thrill of being alive that can infused into all that you do.  Life is lived at the edge, and made manifest in the centre; live as much as you can, and allow yourself to bring the world around whenever possible. Acknowledge the cycle and know where you are within it: go to the edge, crawl back to the centre, share your lessons, then return to the edge again. Life is for the living and you live real on the edge (see #129: Comfort / Complacency).

 

Self-Guidance Questions

  1. How close have you been to the edge? What’s the furthest away life has taken you from what is considered to be ‘normal’, acceptable, or mainstream? What have you seen of the centre from taking yourself or being taken to the edge? What did you learn from this experience? What other edge can you take yourself to? How can you get there without hurting yourself? What do you need to learn to grow into realness in yourself and the world?
  1. Be real with yourself: What do you think you know about yourself and how can you actually find out? What experiments can you undertake to take yourself to the edge of your ideas about yourself? What skills or qualities do you take pride in and how can you test yourself to polish them or make them stronger? How can you burst your own bubble? What connections can you build by switching to a stance of similarity over difference? How can you broaden your horizons through diversity? Who can you meet? What can you do? What can you learn?
  1. Look at yourself and your life: Where are you growing strong? Where are you growing complacent? What is the difference between these two processes of growth? How can you reclaim more influence over yourself in areas where you may have become complacent? What new edge can you find? How can you move through it or at least back into your current centre with more understanding?
  1. What control structures have you built for yourself? What routine have you locked yourself within? What do you do at the same time in the same way every week? What automatic responses have you collected to use as stock phrases throughout the day? What cocoon have you created for yourself and how can you ensue that when you push through you fly out free and into the sky?
  1. What waves are you riding? Where are you being carried by the momentum that arises of the tension between where you know yourself to be and where you consider yourself to be headed? How is your vision and passion allowing you to push through edge after edge? What do you need to know about yourself and your world to keep pushing through? How can you stay motivated? How can you prepare yourself to grow real in strength as you push through the pain? How can you make the most of each moment by winning the war with yourself as the lowest parts of yourself tell you that pain is always a bad thing? What qualities do you need to develop to stay self-directed within the process?
  1. Look again at your ego: How do you manage it? When does it hold you back? What kind of trouble does it get you into? When do your insecurities lead you to make stupid or irrational choices and behaviours? How has your ‘centre’ served you in the past but where might you have become complacent about it all? Where does your centre only exist in the past? Where have you convinced yourself that the palace is already complete when all that you really have is a house under renovation? What walls do you need to knock down so that you can build something new?
  1. Look at your skills: How can you test yourself on the things that you think you can already do? What can you put out there? What can you reveal to the world to be scrutinised? What competitions can you enter? Who is your greatest challenger and what can you learn from them? What skills do you currently have that are underdeveloped? What new skills can you learn? How can you refine them? What process needs to be worked to get you where you need to be? What qualities?
  1. How can you push your world to its edge? Instead of reacting or responding to pressure how can you put some pressure on the world for a change? What do you seek to bring into the world and how can you do so? What change needs making? What do you no longer accept about the world? What can you do to make amends? What higher level human values, virtues, and qualities do you share with others and how can you work together to bring more of them into the world?
  1. As an experiment: Where are you facing pressure to conform to something unreal? Where are you being pulled into the centre of the accepted cultural narratives that surround you? What stories are you being sold? What values? What ideas are you being forced to accept by the mainstream? Where can you draw the line between what the world at large thinks and what you actually think? How can you live out your own edge instead of just the edge of what is currently acceptable, standardised, or mainstream?
  1. What can you do to diversify yourself and your life? How can you extend your social circles to meet new and interesting people and learn from their worldviews? How can you become aware of your own limits so that you can push through them or learn from? How can you detach from results and enjoy learning from processes? What can you do to benefit from the knowledge that observing your process changes it? How can you sharpen the blade of your edge to maximise your realness overall?

Taken from Personal Revolutions:  A Short Course in Realness by Oli Anderson

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#83: Solitude / Loneliness (from Personal Revolutions: A Short Course in Realness)

Taken from Personal Revolutions:  A Short Course in Realness by Oli Anderson


Solitude is a gift that allow us to peek behind our own mask, an opportunity that few are brave enough to accept, usually because they have forgotten that they are even wearing a mask in the first place. Perhaps because we live in a culture that values self-esteem over self-acceptance, many of us have a tendency to think that if we find ourselves alone then there must be something wrong with us. A man is measured by his friends, or so they say, and so to be alone is to be a nobody; we rely on others to define us and to uphold the scaffolding of the self-image that we like to display in public; we need other people to hold the mask in place for us; we fear the sensation of having it slip in those moments when everybody else has melted away into the mist (see #54: Self-Acceptance / Self-Esteem).

Solitude is a state that we choose to be in; loneliness is a state we find ourselves in when we can’t find anybody to fill the hole inside ourselves. Solitude is being alone with yourself; loneliness is being alone with everybody else, regardless of whether or not they are present. What does this last cryptic sentence mean? It means that solitude allows you to find peace with yourself by spending time with yourself, reflecting on your connection to reality, and giving yourself space. Loneliness, in comparison, is being by yourself, for whatever reason, but not allowing yourself to spend time with yourself because you’re too busy fretting over what everybody else is doing, what you’re missing out on, or what people might be thinking about you for being alone, instead of out singing and dancing with the rest of them. Solitude is about being alone with who you are; loneliness is about being alone with who you think you should be. Solitude is about being real in your own presence alone; loneliness is about trying to live out your ego when nobody else is around (see #65: Your Decisions / Cultural Decisions).

Learn to embrace solitude when you find it and to make time for it if you don’t: turn of the phones, abandon the Internet; make a hot drink and sit and think; look out the window, go for a walk. Take advantage of the chance to get to know yourself as yourself, away from the crowd. Get away from the distractions and the gabble of the masses. Reflect on where you are, where you’re going, and where you’ve been. Failing that, take the time to read some of those books you’ve been meaning to plough through, play an instrument so hard you start sweating, paint a picture, express yourself to yourself, and then share your creations with others if you think they will find them valuable (see #30: Significance / Success).

Personal Revolutions is a book about guiding yourself out of your ego and into yourself so that you can better reach out to others. In order to be able to do this, you first have to be comfortable with yourself, and the key to reaching this state is to spend time with yourself in solitude, so that you can face the reality of yourself as you currently stand. You don’t have to be a hermit or to be antisocial, but you do need to take time away from the buzz of the world’s activity every once in a while, in order to reflect on how things are going so that you can recharge your batteries for more activity, whilst assessing and making necessary changes to the game plan for when you’re back on the field.

Another tenet of this book is the idea that by cultivating the attitude to be a resilient individual with the character required to create a desirable life in an ever-changing world, we will be able to use that character to have improved interactions with other individuals, teams members, and others in our society. To be stable and comfortable with others, you first have to be stable and comfortable with yourself. Solitude helps you to cultivate this attitude by giving you a direct link to the reality of yourself, allowing you to work through and integrate whatever you find so that you can build upon it, and, as we have said many times in this book, it is only when you are able to see something that you are able to work with it or start to make changes. Solitude allows you to increase awareness of yourself so that you can take better action with yourself.

There are so many distractions in the modern world that it can be difficult to find time to be alone. If we’re not at work, or with our families, then we’re on the phone or staring at a screen, texting and emailing our way through the day, sharing our actions with others to perhaps give our lives a sense of significance and ourselves a sense of durability. We’re so used to having superficial connections with others that when we suddenly find ourselves on the brink of a deep connection with ourselves we panic and run away to seek more distraction rather than leave our comfort zones (see #117: Presence / Distraction).

So alien for some of us is the real self to the eyes of the ego that, when we’re initially confronted with it, the experience can be relatively painful. Maybe we don’t like what we find or we find something out-of-sync with the social mask that we wear around others and have confused for who we really are. Maybe we feel a sense of smallness or that our lives are meaningless. If so, this is why you need solitude, so that you can work with these feelings and replace them with positive or neutral feelings that can permeate throughout the rest of your life.

The less comfortable we are in ourselves, the needier we tend to become in the world outside of ourselves. Solitude is a tool for sharpening the quality of your interactions with other people when out and about in the world by sharpening the relationship you have with yourself. By finding and cultivating a sense of peace with who you are, you will be more confident around others in that you are less reliant on them for definition and verification. Essentially, making regular time for solitude is a way to grow in realness by giving you space to familiarise yourself with your true thoughts and feelings and realigning you with your purpose. Clear away the cloud of distractions once in a while and spend a little time in the blue sky. If you can’t handle solitude, you can’t handle yourself (see #55: Realness / Neediness).

Learn to transmute loneliness in to solitude: If you find yourself living through a period where you’re alone, do the things that you won’t be able to do when life picks up again. Read that book. Write that novel. Learn guitar. No state will last forever, if you are actively designing and contributing towards a process that will change your life. Use solitude to grow into yourself, don’t wallow in loneliness, heavy beneath the weight of the ego; spend the time that you have to spend alone improving yourself so that when you’re ready to return to the world you’re actually ready for it. Solitude is motivated by strength; loneliness is motivated by fear. This isn’t judgmental, but one is chosen and one isn’t. Ask yourself if you’re ‘lonely’: what am I really scared of and what can I do about it?

Self-Guidance Questions

  1. How do you feel about solitude? What do you need to do to become more comfortable with it if need be? Where can you go to be by yourself and reflect on who you are and who you will become within the world?
  1. How often do you find yourself craving the attention or company of other people? How often are these cravings ‘healthy’ and how often might you be looking for an excuse to distract yourself from reality? How often do you escape in other people and how often do you actually spend time with them?
  1. As an experiment: Look at the relationships in your life. Which, if any, only serve to help you uphold a certain image of yourself? Who do you spend time with because they suck up to you, for example? What situations do you put yourself in because it gives you an opportunity to wear a certain mask (for example, do you socialise with subordinates from work because they treat you in a certain way…)? Where might you benefit from solitude as a tool to look behind your own mask? Where are your relationships built on the ego alone?
  1. How often do your find yourself feeling lonely? How might you be isolating yourself? What actions can you take to link your loneliness to your purpose by utilising your time differently? How can you transmute loneliness to solitude? What steps can you do to widen your social circle? How can you build upon your process in the moments that you choose to spend by yourself?
  1. Think about your experiences of being ‘lonely’: What else is going on? Are you bored? Are you seeking an outlet for certain emotions? How can you use this awareness to start building the process of either ridding your life of loneliness or to transmute it into solitude?
  1. What would you do if you had more time to yourself? How can you find it and allow yourself to maximise its benefit? Where can you go by yourself? What places or environments will reconnect you to yourself? Do you need the beach, for example? Do you belong up on the hills? Who are you in the face of yourself on the face of the earth?
  1. Prepare yourself: Next time you find yourself alone with yourself what will you do with your time? Remember: time is the ultimate resource – How will you invest it next time you have nothing but time on your hands?
  1. What kinds of devices or electronics distract you from your solitude? What steps can you take to minimise distractions throughout the day? How can you keep yourself accountable?
  1. How often do you take time to sit and think? What problems could you solve if you dedicated some time to ruminating on whatever is facing you? What questions can you occupy yourself with to improve the quality of your life overall? Give yourself five minutes a day and find out.
  1. What activities can you undertake or add to your routine that will allow you to put your thoughts in order? Can you take a daily walk? Can you take up meditation? How can you ritualise solitude to connect yourself to yourself and your world?

Taken from Personal Revolutions:  A Short Course in Realness by Oli Anderson

Get the full-version:


 

Personal Revolutions: A Short Course in Realness is available on this site at: http://olianderson.co.uk/buy-personal-revolutions-ascir/ or on Amazon here: Amazon UK, Amazon US, Amazon CA, Amazon DE, Amazon ES, Amazon FR, Amazon IN, Amazon IT, Amazon JP, Amazon MX, or everywhere else on this site or in digital form at http://go.personalrevolutionstoolkit.com.

 

Oli Anderson, 2017