Your thoughts create your personal reality
ESE Graduation Ceremony 2018 Florence
The Dreamer was talking to me whilst doing a series of physical exercises, alternating between the sophisticated machines in His gymnasium. This room occupied the top of an ancient tower which overlooked the immense expanse of Mas Anglada. Through the panoramic windows, the centuries-old stillness of the hillsides and vineyards contrasted with the strong and silent equipment and the glinting reflection of steel. The broad skylight framed the heavens, which were crossed by light cirrus clouds.
«So… everyone dreams and everyone creates the world.»
«Exactly! Their own world.»
« What about pollution of the planet? … Conflict and crime?»
«These are part of your personal reality too… The world is as healthy or as sick as you are! Only you can pollute it… by obstructing and dulling your organs! Even those who pollute their bodies, create!… They invent a degenerate world, the events and circumstances of which are the mirror image of their diseased bodies, but first and foremost, a reflection of their states of Being and thoughts. Thoughts are always creative at any level. Thinking belongs to your way of dreaming and is the basic factor in shaping your destiny.”
«What about war and poverty?» I asked, distressed by such an enormous responsibility.
«Suffering, poverty and all the conflict, persecution and genocide in the world, have all been dreamed. They have been secretly desired by a humanity that has seriously polluted its Being and has no idea of the power of thought.»
«While we are talking, hundreds of factories throughout the world are producing and storing armaments to feed conflicts and even destroy humanity. How can we protect ourselves from such a destructive power?»
«Remove from yourself any form of hypnotism, dependency, superstition. Do not lean on anybody’s knowledge, fantasy or prophecy. Know that there is no power out there that can destroy you. Out there nothing can happen without your consent. The world of events and circumstances is totally depending upon you. If you integrate yourself, if you become a unity, then the world will be safe.
So don’t worry about the world, worry only about yourself. This is the only way you can help. No war within, no war without. This is the law.»
The Dreamer picked up a towel from a neatly folded pile and dried His face, then draped it around His neck like a treasured scarf, crossing the ends over His chest with an elegant gesture.
«By learning to master his own body, a man can master the univers» He said.
At this point He raised His eyes and stared at me intently for a long time, without blinking. My thoughts faded away, one by one, with increasing speed until my mind was completely clear.
«Do you remember your time in California… that friend of yours in San Francisco?» He asked, continuing to hold me in his stare.
That was all I needed to hear. I knew perfectly well to whom He was referring. It was surprising how quickly and easily that name, Corrado, came to me.
We had been great friends when I lived in San Francisco. He was a fine musician and when still very young had fallen desperately in love with a belly dancer and married her. Apart from this, however much I racked my memory, there was nothing else I could recall about him that could possibly justify such a close connection to the Dreamer’s idea that every man was the inventor of his own world, the absolute creator of every event taking place in his life.
Then the particulars of a distant memory became increasingly clear, and a curious story began to take shape. Corrado had always felt a natural affinity for African Americans. He used to imitate the way they spoke and behaved, their laid-back style and movements. He worshipped their music, which he considered superior to all others, and loved their culture. He hung out in the same places they did and even attended their churches and whenever he passed a black person in the street, he never missed an opportunity to show how close he felt to their race by way of a wink, a greeting or some witty remark. He dragged his wife into this particular obsession; they had black friends, couples with whom they socialised in the restaurants and clubs favoured by the black community in San Francisco.
One night he and his wife were on their way home when they were mugged and viciously beaten up by a black gang who seemed to have no motive, not even robbery. However, they were so severely beaten that they had to spend several days in hospital. I remember Corrado weeping with rage while he told me about this misadventure.
The Dreamer was watching me, obviously looking for some signs of comprehension on my part, but the seconds elapsed and not even a hint of a clue occurred to me. I knew that He considered musicians and artists in general to possess a low level of responsibility and personal weakness. For the Dreamer, the bohemian world, even those whom history has consecrated as geniuses, were actually dependent on their own art. They were puny men frightened by the unbearable discovery that the individual is the creator of his own personal reality, the supreme Artist, the origin of everything that we see and touch. Aesthetes and artists have not recognised the reason for their existence, and they indulge in something that is only a distant gleam of the Dream from which it originates. Instead of using art as a bridge between man and the dream, a way to touch the innermost part of the self, they cling to it as if it were a god, aggravating that state of dependence on the world which rules their whole life. A man who has reached a degree of higher freedom and is on his way towards unity of Being, can no longer be an artist. When you realise you are the artificer and creator of the world, you can no longer paint or compose music. You abandon that intermediary known as art, just as a lame man who is healed throws away his crutches. According to the Dreamer, freedom from any dependency and slavery was the very meaning of life itself. Roles were prisons to be transcended and left behind.
However, none of these considerations was leading me anywhere either. Corrado was a professional musician. He certainly earned his living from music but I still could not see the connection that led the Dreamer to recall such a memory.
«That episode is life which comes, with both violence and compassion, to show you what you do not want to see, to make you touch what you do not want to touch in your Being. There is no crime outside of us, other than the one we project» said the Dreamer, interrupting my thoughts at that point, considering it a waste of time to wait for the improbable outcome of my pondering.
«That incident allowed your friend to see his lie, his latent racism… to overcome his conflictual self, the violence that he had always carried inside him… and finally set him free.»
The Dreamer mentioned other important aspects of Corrado’s life, presenting them as different facets of the same disease: hypocrisy and lying to oneself. Even his rushed marriage had been determined, not by any real feeling for that woman, but by his desire to remain in the United States and become an American citizen.
He stopped. He changed the weights on his machine and adjusted the programme on the computerised system to do some more exercises. I was amazed. I was sure that I had never told Him anything about Corrado. I wondered how He could know such things about the life of a friend I had not seen or heard from for years. Meanwhile the Dreamer finished doing His exercises.
«There! – He said, tying the sash of His kimono with the pride and grace of a martial ritual – This ‘thing’ which is hidden in the folds of one’s Being, this lie that covers and conceals egoism, prejudice, vanity and racial hatred, constructs that event and is the real cause of all the atrocities in the world.» His tone was like that of a scientist announcing the discovery of a virus that he had pursued to the farthest perimeters of life.
«Suffering, poverty and all calamities… have been dreamed. They have been obscurely desired and unconsciously projected… They are the materialisation, enlarged by a pantograph, of the shadows and monsters that are harboured in the darkness of the Self.»
«Today, if your friend has understood the lesson, he is surely a man more honest and free than before,” concluded the Dreamer. “In time he will recognise his lie… and one day he will also be able to heal it.»
I recalled mankind’s constant song of sorrow; the ode to misfortune that the Dreamer had made me listen to and recognise in myself. At last I understood the vital importance He gave to self- study, to being watchful and ruthlessly attentive to one’s own states; particularly to self-observation which, like a ray of light, prevents any monstrosity from hiding in one’s Being.
Self-observation is self-correction
I remember His Aphorism: ‘States and events are one and the same thing…Vision and reality are one… Thinking is Destiny… The world is such because you are such…’ and among the most surprising: ‘life is a stick of chewing-gum, it takes the shape of your teeth’. I recognised the golden thread connecting them as different expressions of the same message; a message that summed up all His teachings and at the same time was the final frontier that human intelligence had dared to approach.
In a moment of lucidity, a bright truth came to me like the announcement by an almighty god: the world is the mirror of the Being! A laser beam penetrated the sedimentary layers of my description of the world… I ‘saw’ that each molecule was wonderfully connected to everything. And that ‘everything’ was a personal and subjective entity.
«You are the only obstacle preventing the world from changing. Change yourself and you will see the world change before your eyes! Each atom of clarity, freedom, and absence of death will take shape in the world and free it from all evil.»
I understood scientifically, without moral or metaphysical frills, the importance of self-knowledge and of working tirelessly to elevate one’s own Being.
«Whatever journey a man takes, whether historical or mythical, and whatever exodus he undertakes, whether real or imaginary, leads towards one single goal: self-knowledge! Self- knowledge makes you the master of yourself and of the world.»
(From ‘The School for Gods’)