Here’s the post that kicked it all off. This is chapter 10 of 12, to give interested readers the chance to take on the free ebook chapter by chapter over the weekend, debate it amongst themselves, or even challenge the author who’s keeping tabs.
by Greg Swann
Chapter 10. A mindful catalog of mindlessness.
I told you how you came to be a self, but how did you go about failing so completely, so consistently, to be a defective, bungled and botched not-self? You worked at it, that’s how.
It really is a testament to your fundamental goodness that you have tried so hard, for all of your life, to conform to ideas of moral virtue that no one can live down to fully and yet still manage to remain alive as a human being. You were thoughtless – mindless – and so you did not know that the cause of your repeated failures at attaining those “virtues” was human nature itself. But you were damned if you didn’t try to be what you sincerely thought was “good,” and that much is all to your credit. You may have behaved mindlessly, but you gave your mindless pursuit of ethical perversion everything you had.
But how did anyone gull you into behaving so thoughtlessly so scrupulously and so relentlessly for so long?
Here’s one good way: Inclusion and exclusion. It worked great when you were five years old and it still works great today. Obviously, no one can indoctrinate you before you master Fathertongue. Before then, words are semaphores to you, ciphers, with no more conceptual content than the wagging of a dog’s tail. If someone had read the Bible to you while you were still a toddler, or the Koran or the The Federalist Papers or The Communist Manifesto, what you would have heard, absorbed and acted upon would have been nothing but incomprehensible sounds, less meaningful to you, and less interesting, than the dog’s barking. But as soon as you came to be able to think in Fathertongue, the human beings around you could undertake to reward you, physically or emotionally, for conforming to their dogmas, and to punish you for failing to.