My Central Idea. was brought to my attention, I did not go looking for it. It began to develop when I was in my mid forties. That was in the 1970's. It's October 2006 at this point in Time.
Every idea begins by being born in a body, I believe at this point in Time, and the task of that life is to discover the idea.
One day when I was in my mid 40's (1970'S) I saw two books which I'd read in the past and been affected by in different ways. Seeing them together one on top of the other, I remembered faintly the history of each book, which keep in mind, had been quite different. I noticed somewhat distantly that the jacket of the books was printed in the same shades of green. I bought them and read The Bridge Of San Luis Rey first, then read Childhoods End.
I'd seen the movie of The Bridge Of San Luis Rey when I was in my early 20's. Then as was my habit, I read the book, not because I liked the movie but because I didn't understand it. It had been my lifelong habit to read movie magazines, I loved movies and often read the book afterwards but I had not read this book several times because I loved it. I was puzzled by my inability to understand it. I could not 'get' why the book was so highly regarded that it won the highest prize in literature. It remained an enigma to me even after re-reading again and then again later. The 'sense' of what the book was about eluded me even then but I was intrigued by it's fame. .\
The main idea in the book is one man's search for evidence of God. He believed he can find God's working in the life of the 5 people who fell to their death when the bridge collapsed, tossing them into the abyss.
There's a conversation in a chapter titled, Perhaps An Intention in which an old abbess makes a remark that had caused me to pause over it when I read it the first time. It's on page 137, "..and the insane? How do they treat them now? I watch them sometimes and it seems to me there is a secret about it, just out of sight, just around the corner.....". I remember thinking this was an odd question, out of context and somehow it seemed unusual to insert in the conversation.
I can't be certain about the timing but soon afterwards I re-read Childhood's End. The history of that book was unique in that when I first read the last third of it, I had become so immersed in the story that somehow I was embedded in it. I'd had strong effects from certain books when I was in my teens as well as throughout my life but no other book has ever had this particular quality such that the book and I were one. As I read it the memory of myself reading it the first time returned vividly and although I'd not thought about the book in any particular way after reading it, which was not true of a few other books, I felt again the effect it had on me originally.
Several unusual situations developed when I read Childhood's End again:
I noticed that at a certain point I read a sentence on page 181, in the chapter titled, The Last Generation but I had omitted one word. Then noticing the omission, I paused to wonder why I had not read that word! That sentence is embedded in a paragraph that is a part of a conversation between an alien and a man. The alien speaks: "All through that century the human race was drawing slowly nearer to the abyss never even suspecting it's existence. Across that abyss, there is only one bridge. Few races, unaided have ever found it. Some have turned back while there was still time, avoiding both the danger and the achievement. That would never have been your fate or your fortune. Your race was too vital for that. It would have plunged into ruin and taken others with it, for you would never have found the bridge."
What I had read was: "Few..... unaided have ever found it.", rather than 'Few races unaided have ever found it." Why was the word 'races' omitted? Somehow I could not read the word 'races' in that one sentence! But I was more puzzled by why I wondered to myself about this not too unusual fact. It was then I felt a faint sense that within my mind there was another reader. It had been faintly sensed as I'd read, it was 'poised, waiting, even searching' for something and it had recognized what it was looking for in this material: "...it is an abyss across which few....unaided have ever found their way." But somehow the word 'races' was not part of what it recognized.
I felt the presence of this 'other reader' in a way I cannot describe even now. it was so barely there, so faintly sensed. What caused me, who normally 'scan read' swiftly to notice this seemingly simple deletion?
I paused over that particular sentence for some moments, re-reading the words on the page and also somehow aware of what was going on in my mind. The big issue was trying to figure out why I wondered about seeming to avoid reading one word. It was a memorable event.
I had felt that something faintly visible to me in my mind had been poised, waiting and expectant as I read then I recognized when it had found what it was looking for: a fragment embedded in a conversation between a man and an alien. What it noticed was brought to my attention in this manner; that may be the only way such an embedded detail could have been highlighted and caused to seem significant. There was no reason to 'wonder' but that I did 'wonder' was cause to wonder. That's how it seems to me now, more than 2 decades later, but at the moment I could not have known all this.
Something happened later, I don't know how much time passed but the fragment of a conversation between an abbess and a visitor from Spain became linked up with those few words in Childhood's End. At some point they spontaneously occurred into my mind for reason I could not see.: "..and the insane? .... I watch them sometimes and it seems to me there is a secret about it, just out of sight, just around the corner....it is an abyss across which few....unaided have ever found their way."
The resulting 'sentence' which I did not form myself came into my thought at some point in the late 1970's. It occurred just randomly for no reason and eventually, not immediately, I wondered to myself about that strange reoccurrence. It was always accompanied by memories of the very different histories of the two books. It was rather a large package of memories that accompanied the thought that obviously my own mind had constructed.
It seems to me now, that a future event was being built up, in a form that was visible to me by an activity in which my curiosity about what was going on in my own head was being aroused, beginning with an obviously non-self generated sentence created from two sources. It's an idea that I understood somewhat 25 years later but those 25 years were painful, almost life threatening and overwhelming.
My body became an uncomfortable shell somehow during that time. My mind was teeming day and night with activity that would not let me sleep such that almost a decade later when the movie, Sleepless In Seattle came out, I had a rueful laugh because the title described a fact about me. And in my physical life at home a situation developed that I had to discover was distinctly related to the 'secret about the insane'.
It began with a new, unsuspected kind of 'self replication', because there are individuals who have a 'see it my way personality' and this personality is dangerous. This isn't unusual, nothing mystical is involved, it's been known as 'participation mystique' as long ago as St. John's Dark Night Of The Soul. It's possible to become enmeshed in a 'cult-like' group without going to church, and this situation began in such a group. There were relationships in my real world that began to cause me to feel weird, 'surreal' in fact although I would not have used that word then.
There were physical causes that I believed explained many different 'effects' that had by 1984 changed every facet of my mind, body, thought, hearing and perception. I had an almost unbearable noise in my head that did not seem to come from ringing in my ears, it was behind my right ear. When I first noticed it my thought was: "Oh, no! Nobody could ever get used to that." and I began to weep tears in such quantity that I could not see how my body could produce them.
A sense of being 'controlled from afar' as though I was a satellite 'dawned' slowly not in my imagination but when actual events happened over a period of a few years that planted seeds that grew together to produce that idea. Examples: In 1984 I bought a 1979 Datsun 210 station wagon and when I read the license tab ETW651 the first time to get it registered, an automatic association was formed in my mind and I laughed somewhat about it: Extra Terrestrial Woman 651. Another incident happened when I had a computerized picture of myself made of x's and o's. One day two years later, I glanced at the machine generated image of me, and the thought occurred to me that I had felt had like a machine even then, not like my normal self.
I was noticing a peculiar sense that I could not name for years, and in the most literal way, it actually named itself! The new 'sense' changed every thing in my exterior life but I could not see any real alteration so at some point I came to think of the change as within my mind. Whatever it was it over-layed everything outside of my body, changing every thing, but not really changing any thing at all! When I understood what the new sense was, I had become aware that it was describing itself to me, naming itself even and also had named me specifically.
I will have to describe how that was done!
An almost unbearable sense of grief had begun to grip me one night, but it was somehow connected to a real person that I barely knew so I could not understand why I felt that degree of grief. Although that person was a basically a stranger I had an almost irresistible attraction towards him, wanting nothing more than to be able to talk to him without the unusual feeling of being stifled, prevented. He had become the focus of my attention after a short dream that was unlike any I 'd ever had before. After the dream, 'thought' about this man moved constantly through my mind day and night for years. I wondered to myself about how my mind could generate that much thought about one man.
But I said nothing about the content of the dream or the dream itself for reasons I had to experience before I understood my silence and the inability to say words I wanted so much to say. Many experiences had to happen before I knew there are real 'depths of mind' into which at that point I could see/listen to, and that 'depths' carried the band of thought but I could not not express it's content in words, they were not 'words' yet!
It was work that I would not have expected to have to do, to bring that content into a location where they could be written then spoken! By 1987 I had begun to notice, or suspect in a barely sensed way that the thing at work in these events was explaining itself in a chaotic way but somehow using what was in front of me at times in a way that at first I didn't pay much attention towards. The kind of non-self generated, re-occurring thought that I noticed after having read the two books, had already been brought to a level of awareness where I noticed them in the late 1970's.
There had been a few reoccurring memories that flashed into my mind, I had begun just barely noticing them and wondering to myself about why they had reoccurred throughout my life when I was in my late forties. When I read The Bridge Of San Luis Rey, only then was I wondering to myself about them. But I did not connect those 'random regenerations' of an event from my past, to the incident in which my mind created it's own sentence and began to regenerate it periodically. I noticed it without connecting it to anything I'd ever experienced previously. The connection between them emerged slowly. These 'regenerated memories' were I believe described as 'remains' by Emanuel Swedenborg in his writings.
This 25 years was a trip through the mind, through a mental space which was an unsuspected world within me. It began with my noticing how this particular idea was formed in my thought, and how this was accomplished in a visible process by a purpose filled 'will' other than my own' over more a span of time not of days, weeks, months or even years. A decades long event unfurled slowly as though (and this thought actually occurred to me one night in 1982,) I was seeing a miracle, slowed down so that I could watch it.
One night in 1982, it began: "I am in a room full of teenagers." I didn't understand why as I looked around the room a thought that I was in a room full of teenagers came into my mind. What followed that thought was a new kind of experience.
Much followed that one thought: "This is impossible. How on Earth will I ever explain this? And who on Earth will ever believe me?" Then a sense of words occurred, not actual words, that I was seeing a miracle slowed down in Time so that I would watch it as it happened. The 'sense of words' occurred, faintly, barely sensed along with a vivid memory of something that had happened actually when I was about 13 years old. The memory was complete: Of myself when I was entering a new school, entering Junior High School. Our f mily had moved and I was going into Junior High School but not in the town where I'd gone to grade school. I was angry, lonely and watching a playground of children when one of my new class mates came to me. She introduced herself and made me feel less lonely. The memory of that retrieved event was as vivid as the real event although it flashed into my mind briefly and was embedded in quite a lot of material. Quite a mass of 'thought content' followed the question that had occurred into my mind: "Who on Earth will believe me?" An answer to that question was given although I understood it not at all for many event filled years. Because it was the first of it's kind I understood not a whit of what it meant.
That evening in 1982 was the first real mindquake; it was an apparent preliminary event but it was critical in that it happened where it happened, away from my home and was not connected to people in my home and the situation in which I and several other individual were enmeshed, had begun by 1982 to make me feel very strange at times. I felt as though the world floor was suddenly Jello more and more frequently. .
At that point (it was a years long point) I literally felt 'unbalanced', unable to remain erect at such times. Not wanting to embarrass myself, I had to find many ways to keep up the 'normal' conversations or activities required in that specific situation, which was that we were struggling to learn challenge levels of square dancing. The situation was specific and what happened could not have happened anywhere else at any other point in time, that I realize now. That night as I looked around the room, I'd already begun to experience a 'new kind of event' in which precise timing of something I said or thought related to what was in front of me in a most amazing way.
There was as well a new kind of experience of myself. I felt nearly inert at times, now the word 'comatose' as to my own will seems to be appropriate.
I could not hope to describe then that a 'distance' had been installed somehow between myself and what I was doing, saying and thinking so that my body had become a kind of object, without tangibility. but in a strange new way what I was doing was observable to me, as though I were both actor and audience. It took a long time to realize 'self observation' had been switched on. The best description I can give now is one I had to discover very slowly, I had become visible to myself and was viewing what was going on in a 'once removed' way. I was already watching what was going on in my mind without awareness of that fact, after a short extremely vivid dream began to generate a nonstop stream of thought about the dream and one of the two persons in it. I had become sleepless literally, and was beginning to seeing a new effect that changed everything subtly, even what I heard, saw or thought.
At that point I was urgently involved in trying to prove to someone who thought I was finally 'over the edge' that I was not crazy. That was what compelled me to try to understand what was going on, to prove that I had not finally 'gone over the edge', to someone whose main focus in life had been that he wanted truth, and only truth. Somehow I became to the same focus, wanting the truth, only the truth.
In trying to respond to what was going on in my actual home, as well as this new situation in which certain people began to give evidence in their speech and what they were doing in their lives at that point in Time, that they knew what I was thinking about, I became enmeshed in events that had their origin outside of Time itself, I believe.
This event involving rereading two books happened in the 9 years prior to 1984.
(Later I became aware that this kind of 'event' in which I noticed myself wondering about a seemingly trivial detail had happened before in my mind . The first time had been when I was about 9 years old, when I wondered to myself about why a Sunday School teacher used the impersonal pronoun 'it' rather than the personal 'he'. She was telling her version of the birth of Jesus and that event was certainly important, critically important. The misplaced pronoun, trivial as it may seem to be was evidence to me when it was pointed out to me later, that this event was not created by my self, it was observed by me, given from some other source. The only way such events could be identified was by implications and even those had to be pointed out to me later.
Another similar event happened in 1989. The first mindquake happened in 1984, another built from it happened in 1989 mindquake and it reflected backwards in my life to 1982 and that linked up with the way my Sunday school teacher told her version of the birth of Jesus and used an impersonal pronoun rather than a masculine 'he'. I had not recognized the 1982 as a smaller mindquake had happened, but in 1989 it was clearly revealed to have been an 'initiatory event' , one that prevented me from attributing the source of these experiences to people in my life.
I had been outraged at something my husband was doing, and it was really through him that my experiences happened. However, they were passing through him, as well as certain other people I knew at that point in Time; that was difficult to accept even when I was given information to begin to understand it. It was not easy to understand this idea, it required years and much more information to understand. The biggest problem I've had was that the people who were most intimately involved with me at that time, could not validate anything, for reasons that even now make me believe the word 'deny' does not describe the kind of 'forgetting' or 'loss of memory' that was involved. It's like that kind of 'denial' is the opposite of a hallucination, it's a deletion from reality.
The second 1989 mindquake, which I named my 'pi quake' reflected back to the very early life event when a teacher told her version of the birth of Jesus and used an impersonal pronoun rather than the appropriate masculine gender, 'him'. There were also strings of related events that I had noticed but not to the extent they were explained in this succession of 'mindquakes'. That event is described in another link, "It did not come as it was expected to come." .
Another similar event happened again later in 1989 when I noticed that I paused to wonder about a trivial seeming detail in a copyright statement at the end of Petr Beckmann's book, The History Of Pi. I wondered why a number, '100,265 decimals of pi' had not been rounded off to 100,000 or 100,250, or even 100,500. Somehow the choice of 100,265 seemed odd. Then I glanced at the first row of decimals on the first of two pages of pi's decimals and in a glance noticed '265' in the first 10 decimals. Within a flash of time, I saw my mind's activities clearly as it went to work on the first rectangle of decimals, and displayed to me, arrangements that formed relationships that I knew immediately not one other person but me would ever have seen.
There had been several events happen in the few months prior to this day, in which certain numbers had become distinct, they were ordinary every day events, trivial seeming as all these other seemingly trivial events that I've attempted to describe. )
The titles of two other books are significant now, so I want to mention two of them: Of Human Bondage, by Somerset Maugham had been a radio screen play that entranced me. There was no movie of The Magnificent Obsession by Lloyd C. Douglas when I read it although I seem to remember a radio show about 'Dr. Hudson's Secret Journal. I was utterly fascinated with the unfolding of the mystery of Dr. Hudson's Secret Journal. Those two books also contained ideas that related to my future, which of course I didn't know until the future had become my past. There is a distinct relationship of the past to the future in the kind of experiences I've had since 1984 although it's 2006 at this point in Time and I've only realized within the past 5 years that the 9 years prior to 1984 were the most important in regard to what happened in 1984, I read almost constantly when I had time, and I often read a book in a few hours although that has changed radically. That is probably because I read most fiction books and magazines, tending towards reading science fictions, westerns by Zane Grey, and The Hardy Boys series.
The 'central idea' began with it's formation in my mind, long before I could speak about it to anyone. It began early in my life but it was revealed through my finding those two books that I'd previously read, when I was in my mid forties. The idea was embedded in those two books but a process of real abstraction planted it in my mind. It was hidden, an unknown and unsuspected idea to the person I was when I was in my mid forties, but something in me was initiated gradually at that point, that knew where and when to cooperate with the 'force' that knew where to find certain text in the two books.
Then I was witness to how a function of mind that was not under my control went to work, creating a sentence then bringing that sentence into focus, alongside the fact that I knew I had not created it myself. Over the next 10 years (1979/1989) this function of mind worked in a visible way, and taught me to recognize that the information necessary to understand the 'idea' was somehow 'lit up', and that a new form of language had to be learned, and then that a mechanical process was operating in a most unexpected form and was generating a self teaching language.
It is not like anything I've ever read about, it is completely unlike anything I've ever read in any nonfiction authors' books. But this part of me, this particular observing point within me, was also hidden because all activity in one's mind is not accessible immediately, some events happen in the mind that are visible but somehow are viewed as from a great distance from conscious awareness of them. Such events advance into a nearer state of awareness, and that is a fact I had to notice over a period of time that was as much as several decades. And there is quite a variety of inner content. That also had to be discovered.
It's a very complex idea that 'evolved over a long period of time' and it came to me through a process of abstraction that I had to discover (or recognize) since it has always been operating in a hidden vein of experience in my life. The process of 'abstraction' is not new at all, any book that has a lengthy bibliography at the end of it is almost certainly the result of the same kind of experiences. Using all definitions of the word 'abstraction' to understand what I mean, the process created it's own words, in a language I did not originally know, using memories from my past that were quite specific, as well as what was in front of my eyes quite often, as 'content', while it illustrated the emerging idea.
Two fragments from two different books had been joined into a single 'thought' that emerged into my mind without any intent or purpose of mine.
The 'idea' was told to me, in a language I had to learn to understand from a state of innocence. It is a pattern and it's process as well and it's content are a package that I believe now was initiated almost from the moment I was born. The complete package included an apparent fore knowledge of the future, not only mine but many individuals whose active participation startled me almost to a state of overwhelm, when it became obvious to me. The words I needed astonished me by seeming to know where on Earth I was, although I had to discover they were coming to me in a form I could not have expected or understood myself. These individuals in certain specific situations and books that just happened to come to my attenton, actually told me what I didn't know myself; there was an active and ongoing 'enactment' for several years by people who gave every evidence of knowing what I had not said anything about to anyone, what I was thinking about. The 'level' of mind where I was 'thinking', and 'wondering' about what was going on in my mind, and my life, seemed to be clearly known by several people. They may have learned the same language as it developed in me, in my mind, an awareness of the idea as well as the information necessary to understand it, but that does not seem to have happened.
For Example: When I read Ralph Waldo Emerson's The Oversoul I read "What is meant for thee, even now wings towards thee..." and I felt in my body an unfamiliar and un-articulatable (at that point) sense that the words had been somehow turned towards me, said directly to me as a person would speak them. When I read those words, a kind of information that I had not experienced before came into mind! I'd had problems in three jobs I'd had and the reasons for those situations and the problems I'd had was given to me. There were three distinct paragraphs in that essay that as I read them, generated what I now realize was a kind of 'influx' that caused me to understand several events that had happened in my past, that I had not understood.
There are individuals who have experienced the same pattern I did, but I didn't know them or anything about the pattern or it's processes. It taught itself, all of it, after it 'sorted the idea out' from where it was hidden so to speak, in two books from which a mind generated sentence was given to me to wonder about, in the 9 years prior to 1984. It began with real people and continued with real world people actively involved.
The process and the pattern had been actively at work when I married; it really governed the activities and the passivities in the life of someone very close to me, whom I met in 1952.
This man had an experience in his late teens, which he had mentioned only obliquely as 'sitting under the apple tree with his maker', and he had been told (as he put it himself) everything he would ever need to know in that event. The effect of this event on him as well as the name he gave to it, i.e 'sitting under the apple tree with his maker' formed the background from which my idea was planted then really grew. The fact that the effects of this 'singular event' that happened to him in about 1950 went through 'stages' in his mind and understanding, that were marked only by a certain offhand remark here and there is one I cannot hope to prove.
There were points of change in his attitude towards his 'under the apple tree event' that were about 9 years apart . It was only when I began to have my own experiences, which I did not relate to his experiences 'under the apple tree' for several years after 1984, that I began to link my events to his, and then even to the remote past.
The first man to write about the strange interaction of oppositions from within was almost certainly Hesiod, who wrote that the 'muses could speak the truth or what SEEMS TO BE THE TRUTH.
Within 4 years after 1984 I had two 'strands of understanding' in my mind when I saw, heard or thought about anything. One was my 'normal understanding' that had not changed, but the second 'strand' had grown from a kind of 'event' that had begun to happen in my life, seeping in very occasionally in connection with a very distinct and isolated situation that had developed while two small groups of people that we belonged to, struggled to 'leave the mainstream level' of square-dancing.
I don't like the word 'ignorance' and it is not accurate; I was innocent about almost everything other than what I'd learned in a small town education through high school and growing up without exposure to many educated people.