The Negative Philosophy

I once knew a man who meditated for two hours every day over a thirty-year period. I asked him what he had achieved. He replied, “Nothing – it was a complete success. “

Deconstruction of concept and reactive behavior is the dominant topic of the Negative Philosophy. By the time we reach thirty years of age most of us are fully conditioned. This conditioning does not have to fit well with our own inclinations, but generally speaking, it must fit well with society’s requirements. As a result, many people are unhappy as their learned behavior conflicts with their natural desires. Getting back to our real nature is not so easy. Many erroneous concepts have to be destroyed – concepts such as morality, good, evil, purpose, meaning, free will – and so on. In addition to this, we have to moderate our continual reactive behavior mostly manifested through the emotions. Without this deconstruction of learned behaviors and erroneous concepts, there is no way back to our natural state. Instead, we live the unhappy life of a phony. The vast majority of people choose the latter since challenging it is disruptive and can be unsettling. In any case, there are no guarantees – the slumber of the phony does have its benefits.

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A sense of responsibility comes from ignorance of the fact that we have no control over anything.

There is nothing precious about the here and now, it’s simply that the past and future are unworthy of your attention.

The secret of a tolerable life is to reduce striving to a minimum. Drop the “trying”. Don’t be concerned about wasting time - time is meant to be wasted. Abandon ambitions and seek a situation where only the minimum of effort is needed.

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