Richard's discovery of neither expressing nor repressing

I came across this description of the moment Richard uncovered the method of neither expressing nor repressing, thought I might pass it on to other interested parties as a potentially-useful pointer toward precisely what is meant by the method:

RICHARD: G’day No. 33, In regards to your first query, ‘not expressing’ does indeed refer to thoughts/ thinking, as well as actions/ behaviour, and to not have either ‘good’ or ‘bad’ feelings fuelling thoughts (feeling-fed thinking), as well as no ‘good’ or ‘bad’ feelings fuelling actions (feeling-impelled behaviour), is to have all of the affective energy channelled into the felicitous and innocuous feelings (the happy and harmless feelings).

Needless it is to add, surely, that happy and harmless thoughts inspire felicitous and innocuous behaviour (both in word and action).

Regarding your second query, ‘not repressing’ – or, being more technically correct, not suppressing – essentially refers to societal mores (‘acquired customs and manners’), common to all cultures, whereby civil discourse and commerce hinges upon keeping all emotions/ passions strictly under control (as in suppressing what one truly feels, in any given situation, for the sake of communal harmony).

However, your observations about ‘felt aspects’ characteristic of the emotion in question – characteristic ‘flavours’ which are, you say, felt bodily – are also well worth discussing, albeit later or via another thread, as what you are referring to is known as hedonic-tone (the affective pleasure/ displeasure all experiences, including all states and all emotions/ passions, are automatically/ involuntarily imbued with, by virtue the affective faculty itself/ the feeling-being formed thereof being existent/being in situ, per favour blind nature’s quite basic instinctual attraction-repulsion survival package).

Thus the conventional wisdom is to suppress the affective feelings – to suppress, in fact, virtually all impulses, drives, urges and appetites – and the (resultant) therapeutic wisdom is to express the affective feelings.

And then, in the late-afternoon of an otherwise typical summer’s day, in 1981, a six-foot-two man was standing in the kitchen of his ex-farmhouse being soundly berated, as was also typical, by his four-foot-eleven wife; he was in a bind, a double-bind, in fact, and of his own making insofar as he had formed the intent, a few weeks earlier (on the 1st of January), to live life as it had been in their all-too-brief honeymoon period a little over fourteen years previously his intent to do so was formed as a way of having it segue into the pristine purity of the four-hour perfection experience, indelibly imprinted in his memory, which he had experienced in all its marvellous wonder in the mid-winter of the previous year; his wife, having impetuously agreed that day to travel in concert with him, had already succumbed to the same-old same-old and was out to have him crack, too, so that their life together could revert to normal (having put all that pie-in-the-sky romantic nonsense back where it belonged in the wishful-thinking department).

As he stood there, with the slowly-setting sun streaming yellow through the wide-open French doors leading out onto the brick-paved patio, he was quite aware that a similar scene had taken place only the day before, plus how he had managed to keep his act together only by the exigency of abruptly vacating the scene, until the barely suppressed anger she had invoked in him had subsided enough to return; he was acutely aware, also, that she had his number and, as far as she was concerned, it was only a matter of time before he too succumbed to the same-old same-old; and as he stood there he was uncomfortably aware that the same anger of yesterday was rising, slowly but inexorably, from the solar plexus up toward the rib-cage diaphragm.

There was no way he was going to suppress it – he’d had a lifetime of the failure of the ‘stiff upper lip’ approach – and he was damn’d if he was going to express it, either (for then this four-foot-eleven female would have triumphed over this six-foot-two male yet again); the vision of having to vacate the scene once more – and again and again off into a sombrely-looming future – was not at all an attractive option, yet, if all else failed, he supposed he could always make the unseemly dash to the door.

Thus he stood there still, despite feeling the anger rising ever upward, through the rib-cage diaphragm, and now suffusing the thoracic region with its all-too-familiar temptation.

And he could see her eyes begin to gleam, even through the wrathful glare which had transfixed him all the while, and he just knew she was zeroing in for the kill; his own anger was mounting, ever-simmering and seething it was brimming at the region of the lower throat by now; her face was flushed with purple, with nostrils quite distended, and spittle flecked her livid lips as her shrilling rose to fever pitch; he had left it too late to beat a hasty retreat and his throat muscles quivered as the brimming anger shimmered and shifted into a pre-shout mode born of old and … and, wonder of wonders, that oh-so-familiar throat-muscle quivering skipped a beat or two and began to ease!

With a rapidly-mounting amazement and delight, he marvelled at the fact that he had, in some way, neither suppressed nor succumbed and that he had finally freed himself of domination by this four-foot-whatever fleshly package of seething anger and hatred that had become the mother of his and her children.

And as the slowly-setting sun streams golden from the west another world entirely hoves into view.

Pristine and pure, ever-fresh and new, peerless perfection permeates all and sundry, without exception, and he knows with a certainty that his life is never going to be the same ever again.

Ain’t life grand!

Regards, Richard.


Man that was powerful. What a writer

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That is a great piece of writing, I remember I came across this a while ago and then couldn’t find it again so thanks for the link @henryyyyyyyyyy


This is definitely one to read and re-read again and again. Big thanks to Henry for finding and sharing this gem.


This passage I found especially musical!


And what also arose for me when reading this is that we need this to happen with the “good” feelings too, right guys?

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Thats an interesting question, It seems in practice it could play out a little different with the good feelings, say with love. Because the first and most important step is to see that the good is inextricably linked to the bad otherwise I will most likely express the good feeling or conveniently ignore that it is happening in the first place. There’s also Actualist morality that could lead to repressing the good feelings I guess, for example suppressing/denying love because “I am an actualist and I don’t do relationships” (I’ve been guilty of that one :stuck_out_tongue:), instead of seeing that love is not ‘evil’ as such but rather that it keeps malice and sorrow alive. So perhaps the good feelings in particular require one to really see the whole play for what it is before they can be neither expressed/repressed and then nipped in the bud so that something even better becomes available (felicitous/innocuous feelings, naiveté, purity).


I agree with you mate.

I’ve actually had experiences like Richard’s with anger but with euphoria. I can best describe it as me having “swallowed” the euphoria with a very pure peaceful state following.

This is before having come across actualism. I became weary of euphoric states after noticing how hard I’d crash emotionally after being in them for a time.

I reckon, you can more or less deal with extreme “good” feelings in the same way Richard dealt with anger.


That is a great quote. I get plenty of opportunities to attempt to achieve the same. Except my fleshly package of seething anger is not so short… :stuck_out_tongue:

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