This is putting cart before the horse to me. Not true in my experience.
It’s unnecessary to jab people. But that’s just a sign of fellowship regard and not create a mess with other people, but not a doorway to happiness in anyway.
Being happy leads to harmlessness. Anger, hate, contempt, jealousy etc reactions are supposed to make us to avoid or alleviate pain and hurt. When there is no hurt, there is no need for them to arise.

The problem is that the pursuit of happiness only sets you up for a loosing situation. Because you cannot maintain happiness without harmlessness being there also. Sooner or later the pursuit of happiness for oneself only will reveal its self-centred agenda even if just for the fact that it will get in the way of intimacy with others.

Actually I’m glad you brought this up @Kiman because it just showed me to what extent I am only focusing on the happy part.

The problem as I see now is that to pursue happiness only for myself is to perpetuate the very self-centred nature that also makes ‘me’ unhappy. Because it’s always me me me, I want this, I want that, I don’t like this, I wish this thing was different in the way that I demand etc. This pursuit of happiness for ‘me’ ends up reinforcing ‘me’, it is seeing the harmlessness angle which shows that ‘I’ have to change.

In the pursuit of happiness only, there is only a self-centred concern with that which is ‘mine’ there isn’t a growing caring and consideration for others, if ‘I’ am only concerned with happiness for myself would ‘I’ really do something as big as ‘daring to care’ ? Why? If I can just remain in ‘my’ bubble and keep shifting things about for ‘my’ benefit.

If someone were asking for your advice on ‘how’ to be happy, what might you instruct them to do?

Pursuit of pleasure, not happiness, reinforces ‘me’.
Harmlessness is not intrinsically good, it’s good only because it is associated with intimacy and happiness. But you can’t be harmless unless you are happy. Most harm is created when one acts upon their unhappiness. All harm rather, as long as basic needs are taken care of. The more happy one is, the less need for ‘me’ to exist.

Fulfilling needs, repeatedly, come hell or high water, is pursuit of pleasure. The drive to fulfil needs is ‘me’ in action. As long as the drive is there, there is ‘me’, and coasting along with it is postponing happiness.
Noticing the emotions that underlie the drive, and being intimate with them is part of pursuing happiness.

There’s only a self-centred concern, yes, but that concern is about dissolution of the ‘self’. Harmlessness is a byproduct. Any harmlessness that comes out of choice(choice between acting in favour of me or others) is not genuine, not that it is unnecessary.

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Start with the thought. What thought is bothering. Most thoughts have underlying emotions propping them. Recognize what emotion it is–Is it wanting to be loved and validated? Is it fear of future or losing something? Take note of them. They tell what emotion we are not accepting, that we want to change, rebel against, not comfortable with. Unless there’s acceptance of emotions as they are, thoughts would continue to barge.

See what happens when you don’t think. The restlessness and uneasiness would come to the surface, and when I was okay with them, the thoughts would wind down. So the need to focus on something that’s not going well in life came down. That’s a false association. The uneasiness made me focus on other things, rather than uneasiness itself.

Don’t try to change whoever you think you are(selfless or self-centered, good or bad, failure or accomplished, loving or apathetic…). Notice the needs and see what happens when the needs are temporarily fulfilled–whether it gives happiness or not. And the presence of needs itself is a cause of misery. The fewer needs you have, the more
happy and selfless you are.

Prioritize happiness(that is seen in an EE or a PCE) over everything else. I don’t know the answer if the question is how to prioritize that(It makes sense because all that every human–including the most accomplished, the most talented, uber rich–ever wanted is happiness. They sought more and more pleasures because that gave the semblance of freedom from anxiety that is eternally but subliminally present. So directly aiming for happiness makes sense). Hobbies are distractions. Take up things that are conducive to pces for you.

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Could you tell me what you consider harmlessness to mean? In an actualist sense that is.

@Kiman I don’t know how else to say this but you have blatantly mixed spirituality/morality into your understanding of actualism, this is clear from your posts across the board. Do you not see this?

I was going to write a post and go through each point you mention but I realise this would be completely fruitless unless you can come to this basic seeing first.

As for the above posts, not at all. For i recall having written them with a slant of anti-moral.

As for previous posts months ago, I understand where the misunderstanding is coming from–

The premise was this: Those who are actually free practised actualism, atleast in the final stages, “for the benefit of this body, that body and every body”. Then after becoming free, several of them stopped doing any concrete work to help people at all. That didn’t square up. They are just living their lives, fine, my gripe was that that’s far from maximizing available opportunities.

If the AF people didn’t have any special relation with their children(and the only relation they share is same as they share with other humans), it’s sensible to optimize their resources by adopting other children, or donating money to subsaharan kids rather than indulging their kids by splurging money with the modern parenting. But that’s not happening.

I was just enquiring why it’s not so, rather than saying it should be so. The latter is moralistic, the former is enquiry. You took that I was being in the former, but no.

My goal is to be free from emotions. There you go, atleast at the cognitive level, the end of spirituality or morality.

I struggled with actualist morality that stemmed from self-immolation. I saw similar streak emerging from you, which is why I said I wrote it with an anti-moral slant.

As for the advice on sarcasm in the original post. The need to hurt arises from hurt. Hurt people hurt people is a maxim, but a true axiom.
As long as there’s a high from one upmanship, which arises from not being happy in the first place, there’ll be sarcasm.
The more insecurity there is, the more greed will there be. To fulfil the greed, others’ are trampled over should they come in the way.
My point is that an expression of unhappiness is harm. Most don’t
overtly express it, of course, and that’s necessary for a sane society.

So trying to be considerate with others while not being happy doesn’t lead to any foundational transformation.

There’s no “should” be doing activities that are conducive to PCEs. It’s just sensible to do them since most of our hobbies have social origins(self-aggrandisement that I’m a master at this), to preoccupy our mind(ex: useless intellectual pursuits–avoidance to feel boredom or dysphoria), socialisation(I’d keep myself flush with the latest happenings in the news to have a sophisticated opinion, do superfluous things expending tremendous time and energy when indeed I don’t have to) etc.
So sincerity would mean taking up things that are likely to result in an excellent experience. Doing nothing is one such activity. It’s a voluntarily, gleefully chosen activity. Morality can’t exist when there is no ‘should’ or an emotional compulsion.
As a side note, does morality solely come out of social conditioning? Or does it also arise from the fountainhead of nurture?
Consequently, can one fully extricate themselves of morality as a feeling being?
So selfishness causes guilt for it’s at loggerheads with nurture. When there are conflict of interests(shall I act in favour of my interest or my spouse’s interest?), there’ll be guilt. My experience is that, after a point, nothing can be done about it(that is, it can’t be diminished by dismantling beliefs. The line between what is nurture and what is belief will become fuzzy. And the cost-benefit ratio of investigating it is not worthwhile. Focusing on inducing pces and letting life take over is the only solution, afaik)

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This is the OP’s point.
“In the case in point, if one stops being sarcastic, as in expressing bitter or wounding remarks to others, then one has more chance of being happy … which in turn means that one has less reason to feel cynical …which in turn means one is less prone to be sarcastic and so on … until both cynicism and sarcasm eventually disappear as if by magic.”

We are talking about a particular component of harmlessness.

Sarcasm doesn’t end the way he described. It’s expression will end, but the root of the need for sarcasm will not. Trying to alleviate the existing pain by the pleasure that comes from one-upping others will continue. Happiness dissolves that need.

You say this and yet post the below

Looking for that which is intrinsically good is a give away for morality if there ever was one!

I guess the difficult part is that the spiritual viewpoint permeates so deeply into human thinking that it is difficult to even begin to see the extent of it in oneself. My recommendation would be to look in that direction, of course I have my potential biases and could be mistaken but this is my sincere advice based on what I see :+1:

This is the full sentence:
“Harmlessness is not intrinsically good, it’s good only because it is associated with intimacy and happiness.”

May be I should have used “salutary” instead of “intrinsically good”.
Salutary for what? For ‘intimacy and happiness’.
That is not moral because, there’s no compulsion or “should be”, for ‘Intimacy and happiness’ is what I want.

I split this off to leave quotes thread be mostly about quotes :slight_smile:

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Come on guys this is just a myth I can’t believe this is being passed around :joy:

How about Richard’s observations of young children instinctively lashing out at each other for no apparent reason!

It is a myth that malice only arises as a response to not being happy, malice is an intrinsic part of the human condition.


It is so blatantly clear that aggression (and therefore a lack of harmlessness) is something that is intrinsic to organisms existing on this planet. It is simply a part of the instinctual programming. To say that malice only happens because of hurt is to believe that ‘I’ am actually innocent deep down, come on :roll_eyes:

To put this to test we could say that if only we have a ‘self’ that never experiences sorrow that this self would therefore be free from malice and of course it would not, malice is what ‘I’ am deep down. Malice is just as much of a part of ‘me’ as is the sorrow.

I don’t know where you gonna put these replies now @claudiu :joy:

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True, but it is still worth pursuing relative happiness and the associated relative harmlessness

Yeah course that’s what we’re all doing for sure haha defo agree there :smiley:

Although it probably is worth mentioning that they are relative in both ways to each other, felicitous and innocuous cannot be separated in a way that makes any sense practically.

I think this would call for a good zoom chat actually :grin:

The other thing is and I have observed this in myself is that I will manufacture my real hurts so that I can justify being malicious.

So I noticed when I drive and people drive in a way that is aggressive towards me that it is them hurting me.

And yet when they drive in a way that doesn’t float my boat it is still them that are attacking me!

The fact is I am being malicious, territorial, irritative etc because it is simply what ‘I’ do.

To say I am being that cos of hurt is to miss the full picture.

‘I’ will find reasons and ways to be malicious even in the perfect world, that is what ‘I’ do.

A perfect example would be the countless people that got hurt and malicious because Richard ‘hurt them’ by responding on the AFT.