Working with little I's

luc

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ARC said:
Remarkable.

This is a new concept for me - the little I's. Just reading the top initial post I felt like this will set the stage to enable me to succeed at anything I set my mind to.

In Chu's post with reference to dieting and other self-improvement efforts - what if you include the "cheat" in the original diet plan?

Hi ARC,
Well, my understanding/experience is that consciously allowing "cheating" or even "cheating days", as some people (though not on this forum, as far as I know) recommend, is not very helpful. That's not to say we should beat ourselves up when we cheat - I think in the beginning it's hard not to cheat, and it will happen - but allowing for cheating beforehand kind of negates your aim at not cheating, if that is what you set up for yourself. In other words: Sometimes we have the energy to resist the urge to "cheat", and sometimes we don't. If we consciously allow ourselves to cheat, let's say, this evening, than we will cheat for sure, even though we may have had the energy to resist the urge. So we lost before we even began the fight... Another matter would be if you consciously adjusted your diet to have more carbs in it, for specific reasons. Does that make sense?


ARC said:
I'm wondering how other on the forum perceive the recent hype about Obama being muslim and the muslim intentions being very strongly organized to destroy western culture and implement Sharia law. Some of the things I'm seeing and hearing is initially quite frightening, followed by skepticism for those who perpetrate paranoia - yet I don't think this is something that should necessarily be totally discounted without review.

I think the whole "muslim threat" story is a distraction. It's the age-old tactic to create an external threat in order to redirect the rightful anger of the population towards an imaginary enemy instead of the very power structure that promotes these "enemies". You see, it's not about "muslims vs. Christians", "blacks vs. whites", "communism vs. freedom" etc., it's about psychopaths vs. the rest of humanity, particularly psychopaths in high positions of power, osit.

This article from sott shows how the propagated hatred towards the muslims resembles the hatred towards the jews under the Nazis: http://www.sott.net/article/296487-State-incitement-of-Islamophobia-in-Holland-Nazi-Germany-and-the-Jews-revisited

So I think you're right in that the "muslim question" shouldn't be overlooked, but more in the sense that we should watch carefully which schemes the PTB come up with, how they try to implement them, and how the population reacts (and what we can do about it).
 

luc

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Anthony said:
Trying to get rid of these I's leads to rigidity and even further identification with them in my experience. And just being able to see the lot of them and remember them is extremely difficult, sometimes it seems like I fully understand something and then it is lost the next day. So it's like a roller coaster ride with ups and downs, but it's important to keep on doing your best, and eventually, like a muscle something could come out of the struggle.

Yes, this has been my experience as well, especially the bold part. What I'm learning more and more is that I have to accept that - after all, this is the mind I have, this is reality. Only by accepting reality can we start changing.

So for example, when I have the feeling that yesterday, I had some great insights, and today all seems lost, I just tell myself "well, another little I is dominant now, but the one with the insights will come back eventually, and I'm looking forward to it. Now, in what way can the current little I help me in doing something useful?" It all gets a lot more productive that way in my experience.

So it's not about getting rid of little I's or denying them, it's about acknowledging them, soothing them, setting them boundaries, testing them, trying, failing, trying again, feeling them, loving them, struggling with them... It's LIFE, and we cannot "construct" life, only do our best to see and experience what it is, and adjust our actions to reality.
 

Keyhole

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ARC said:
In Chu's post with reference to dieting and other self-improvement efforts - what if you include the "cheat" in the original diet plan?
This would depend on what constitutes the "diet plan" to begin with. If the "cheat" item of food was originally planned from the start, then technically this would not be cheating.

However, if the individuals aim is to stick to a diet which is free from reactive/toxic food, then mechanically eating a "cheat" food-item through the lack of will-power would be classed as a diversion from the original aim, and therefore a "bad" thing to do in relation to that aim. It is entirely dependent on what someone's aim is OSIT. If their aim was to seek truth and to apply it to their life within and without (which included eating the optimum nutrition), what purpose would they have for adding "cheat" items into their diet plan? It would only be a diversion from the aim. But what can happen is many of the "I's" can begin to make justifications for the cheating. Can convince oneself that the cheat does either not exist, or was actually originally part of the aim. These kind of self lies are decieving and prevent to behavioural change and growth of will power.

On the other hand, if someone with the same aim can SEE that they have slipped up, diverted from the aim and are currently off track, yet acknowledge this fact whole heartedly and objectively, they are in a better position to move forward and change for the better, and can use the "hiccup" as a learning experience to become more familiar with the excuses/justifications that pop up when one is faced with that particular situation, which can later be used as material to work from in the future. The trick is not to beat oneself up about diverting from the aim and not to dwell on those percieved "failures" because that in and of itself is problematic IMO.

Added: Thanks for a great explication of ideas luc, I read the original posts when the thread first started but I think it would be best if I re-read it again, there is a lot of material here.

luc said:
So for example, when I have the feeling that yesterday, I had some great insights, and today all seems lost, I just tell myself "well, another little I is dominant now, but the one with the insights will come back eventually, and I'm looking forward to it. Now, in what way can the current little I help me in doing something useful?" It all gets a lot more productive that way in my experience.
Wise advice. I find that with reading other psychology, ideas become mingled and merge with one another, and it becomes very easy to simply "forget" to utilize the concept of the little "I"s in everyday life, addressing them directly. So something that is definitely useful is to not identify with the current state, and refer to it as "this I" as much as possible, rather than "Me".
 

ARC

Padawan Learner
Yes, the idea is that if you include the cheat in the plan it's not cheating. Moreover, if you're getting a little chocolate fix in your diet, you're not as apt to cheat and eat it, which could potentially lead to the whole beating yourself up and feeling you've spoiled your diet. Me, I crave chocolate. When I crave it I'm apt to eat way too much, but if I eat a little chocolate I don't crave it. To be sure, I love cakes and pies and "loaded" candies with caramel, toffee, nuts and nougat - the more extravagant the better. All of that can definitely be toxic.

luc - "psychopaths vs. the rest of humanity" - now that's a concept I can relate to. It always seems to me like too few people really understand that. Most people think of a serial killer or child predator if you mention psychopath, but most psychopaths live among us, look like us and seemingly "act" like us but their actual behavior is hidden beneath an (often intricate) web of lies. Anyone who has ever been the target of a psychopathic neighbor, co-worker, lover, "friend", or even a spouse or a parent, should understand but too often people tend to see it as a one-time freaky thing or just one freaky individual, but they're not that uncommon.

ARC
 

naorma

Dagobah Resident
Just a short remark to the various I's.

I like that concept and use it from time to time in the following way:
All these I's are ruled by my soul, my true being.
So very often this soul or a higher I give orders and then "I" "wait" until the right "I" turns up to follow that order.
As Luc has described in the beginning it may take a while because other I's want also to do something. Meanwhile I learned not to worry because I know that always the right "I" comes up and does what my order was . . .

;)
 

ARC

Padawan Learner
Quoting naorma

"All these I's are ruled by my soul, my true being. "

The way I see it, the "I" that defines ME is the idea of the set of principals that I hold for myself. The little I's persuade (or attempt to persuade) ME, often based on principals held by other sources surrounding to me - family, friends, neighbors, enemies, religion, politics, laws, commandments, the media, the "devil".

Everything vies to influence our thoughts and ideas, our opinions and principals and, ultimately, our actions. My religion teaches me to listen close for that small inner voice deep within my soul, even as it preaches to influence that voice and to drown it out at times with it's own interpretation of the meaning of God's Word. I have listened to sermons claiming that God hates homosexuals, that black people are the children of Ham (not sure of the name) and are intended to be our slaves, and even one that claimed children should be put to death for disrespecting their parents.

The "I" that defines me listens objectively to all of these sources, and is at times influenced by them (discluding the aforementioned). But the only ones that tend to make the greatest impact, even now, are those negatively forced upon me during childhood - guilt as a means of control and worry as a means to failure - and the endless lies of of the powers that be perpetrated daily by the media.

ARC
 

obyvatel

The Living Force
naorma said:
Just a short remark to the various I's.

I like that concept and use it from time to time in the following way:
All these I's are ruled by my soul, my true being.
So very often this soul or a higher I give orders and then "I" "wait" until the right "I" turns up to follow that order.
As Luc has described in the beginning it may take a while because other I's want also to do something. Meanwhile I learned not to worry because I know that always the right "I" comes up and does what my order was . . .

;)

Have you read any recommended 4th Way book - like "In Search of the Miraculous" (ISOTM) by Ouspenski or the Gnosis trilogy by Mouravieff? The term little "i" is taken from these esoteric texts but the concepts are verified through modern psychology which has come to the same conclusion about the basic lack of unity within the human psyche . "Myth of Sanity" by Martha Stout is one such psychology book also in the recommended reading list.

What you wrote above is the goal of 4th Way Work. It is not a common state for humanity.
 

placematt

Jedi Master
FOTCM Member
luc said:
Thank you everyone for your very kind feedback!

It's funny how putting something into writing and sharing it can help the knowledge take deeper roots: Today I read some of your replies on the smartphone and was itching to reply (another little I...), but I had a business meeting today and really had to put the "job guy" in charge there. Interestingly, once he took over and I was in the meeting, at one point I suddenly remembered my post here and your replies, and felt a slight, draining "stab", which I had to consciously "let fade away". I think it was the "job guy", busy talking to that lawyer about his new website, going "what the HECK is that all about?" when he suddenly briefly met the "forum guy". Really, our little I's can be so different, but it's also great to be more and more able to take a "bird eyes view" on them, and I think I could apply the knowledge I shared in my post better today myself because I put it "out there".

wand3rer said:
hey Luc,

I really enjoyed reading your post. I too have been very interested in my own I's for some time trying to understand their workings. For me though what I'm finding most interesting and difficult, is that When i personally choose to go away from a specific "I" , somehow that "I" finds a way back into that moment via a different/ external source.

but i really enjoyed your post and appreciate you sharing

I know exactly what you mean. And I hope I didn't make it all sound too simple - it's incredible hard to get those little I's under control even a little bit, and I fail all the time! But just being able to observe these mechanisms is a huge step forward I think. Something you could try: Once you notice the little I returning, try to feel everything connected to it - how do the different parts of your body feel? What thoughts come to mind? What triggered the little I? Maybe you can even deliberately think of something entirely different and see how the little I reacts - does it get angry because you are trying to kick it from the throne for example? I think it's a rich field for self-observing and experimentation.

I dont think you made it sound simple my friend. i think i hadn't completely grasped this whole I's battling to very recently.

To elaborate a bit, in regards to the servants analogy, for me i feel like its literally servants fighting, competing against each other. And then when i bring attention to this, it adds a whole showing off, who can be more cunning in the eye of the master or in this case the eye of the observer. Its weird complex and i hope that makes sense. In brief moments like these, my own attention normally triggers the bad servants to bring an extra power because the good servants don't care about the attention. So its an odd power play. I believe though in these moments, my breathing is very shallow.

Especailly when i try to kick it from the throne as you put it, trying to usurp it, with my added observation, plus other I's competing, it to a degree, seems easier to let the I already on the throne take the Win because as you said in earlier posts, Its incredibly draining!! And only recently have I really understood this!!

Keyhole said:
However, if the individuals aim is to stick to a diet which is free from reactive/toxic food, then mechanically eating a "cheat" food-item through the lack of will-power would be classed as a diversion from the original aim, and therefore a "bad" thing to do in relation to that aim. It is entirely dependent on what someone's aim is OSIT. If their aim was to seek truth and to apply it to their life within and without (which included eating the optimum nutrition), what purpose would they have for adding "cheat" items into their diet plan? It would only be a diversion from the aim. But what can happen is many of the "I's" can begin to make justifications for the cheating. Can convince oneself that the cheat does either not exist, or was actually originally part of the aim. These kind of self lies are decieving and prevent to behavioural change and growth of will power.

On the other hand, if someone with the same aim can SEE that they have slipped up, diverted from the aim and are currently off track, yet acknowledge this fact whole heartedly and objectively, they are in a better position to move forward and change for the better, and can use the "hiccup" as a learning experience to become more familiar with the excuses/justifications that pop up when one is faced with that particular situation, which can later be used as material to work from in the future. The trick is not to beat oneself up about diverting from the aim and not to dwell on those percieved "failures" because that in and of itself is problematic IMO.

Added: Thanks for a great explication of ideas luc, I read the original posts when the thread first started but I think it would be best if I re-read it again, there is a lot of material here.

luc said:
So for example, when I have the feeling that yesterday, I had some great insights, and today all seems lost, I just tell myself "well, another little I is dominant now, but the one with the insights will come back eventually, and I'm looking forward to it. Now, in what way can the current little I help me in doing something useful?" It all gets a lot more productive that way in my experience.
Wise advice. I find that with reading other psychology, ideas become mingled and merge with one another, and it becomes very easy to simply "forget" to utilize the concept of the little "I"s in everyday life, addressing them directly. So something that is definitely useful is to not identify with the current state, and refer to it as "this I" as much as possible, rather than "Me".

I have defiantly felt this idea of cheats, incorporated into the aim as justifications very prominently as i have been starting the keto-genic diet. I was going to ask if these would be I's or cravings but i guess it depends on how we actually react to the justifications and our process of logical decision making which makes it defined by an I or chemical deficiency/ craving. Either case lots of excellent advice and discussion!
 

luc

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obyvatel said:
naorma said:
Just a short remark to the various I's.

I like that concept and use it from time to time in the following way:
All these I's are ruled by my soul, my true being.
So very often this soul or a higher I give orders and then "I" "wait" until the right "I" turns up to follow that order.
As Luc has described in the beginning it may take a while because other I's want also to do something. Meanwhile I learned not to worry because I know that always the right "I" comes up and does what my order was . . .

;)

Have you read any recommended 4th Way book - like "In Search of the Miraculous" (ISOTM) by Ouspenski or the Gnosis trilogy by Mouravieff? The term little "i" is taken from these esoteric texts but the concepts are verified through modern psychology which has come to the same conclusion about the basic lack of unity within the human psyche . "Myth of Sanity" by Martha Stout is one such psychology book also in the recommended reading list.

What you wrote above is the goal of 4th Way Work. It is not a common state for humanity.

I agree with obyvatel here - I think Gurdjieff's point was that usually, we have no clue at all that we are governed by many little I's, and only after serious Work we may start observing them. Changing these patterns requires even more Work, and even then, we fall asleep all the time again, meaning we become unconscious of our little I's and/or are unable to do anything about them.

Put another way, it's not our "soul" that chooses these little I's, on the contrary, it's what G. calls our (false) personality, which is just a random product of outside influences and is unable to achieve any meaningful aim. Castenada calls it the "predator's mind", which he describes as a "foreign installation". I think it's important to acknowledge that we usually are not guided by our "soul", even if we have worked on this for a long time...
 

placematt

Jedi Master
FOTCM Member
luc said:
obyvatel said:
naorma said:
Just a short remark to the various I's.

I like that concept and use it from time to time in the following way:
All these I's are ruled by my soul, my true being.
So very often this soul or a higher I give orders and then "I" "wait" until the right "I" turns up to follow that order.
As Luc has described in the beginning it may take a while because other I's want also to do something. Meanwhile I learned not to worry because I know that always the right "I" comes up and does what my order was . . .

;)

Have you read any recommended 4th Way book - like "In Search of the Miraculous" (ISOTM) by Ouspenski or the Gnosis trilogy by Mouravieff? The term little "i" is taken from these esoteric texts but the concepts are verified through modern psychology which has come to the same conclusion about the basic lack of unity within the human psyche . "Myth of Sanity" by Martha Stout is one such psychology book also in the recommended reading list.

What you wrote above is the goal of 4th Way Work. It is not a common state for humanity.

I agree with obyvatel here - I think Gurdjieff's point was that usually, we have no clue at all that we are governed by many little I's, and only after serious Work we may start observing them. Changing these patterns requires even more Work, and even then, we fall asleep all the time again, meaning we become unconscious of our little I's and/or are unable to do anything about them.

Put another way, it's not our "soul" that chooses these little I's, on the contrary, it's what G. calls our (false) personality, which is just a random product of outside influences and is unable to achieve any meaningful aim. Castenada calls it the "predator's mind", which he describes as a "foreign installation". I think it's important to acknowledge that we usually are not guided by our "soul", even if we have worked on this for a long time...

Hey Luc,
Do you think health is something these I's strive for or is it a soul/ essence aim that is just filtered through. I have been wondering because some people have very strong aims for personal health and other's not so. But health is essentially life to a degree, both mental and physical. So I'm curious if people here think its a little I aim or if its a essence aim. Im curious if others have found more motivation or understanding of the role this plays the more they observe and see themselves. Or if its more so an external influence. of course health can be different for people too. Some seek physical health, others mental health. The fourth way could also be considered a health in some way. So where does this aim lay? Hope that makes sense :)
 

patty2292

Jedi Master
wand3rer said:
Hey Luc,
Do you think health is something these I's strive for or is it a soul/ essence aim that is just filtered through. I have been wondering because some people have very strong aims for personal health and other's not so. But health is essentially life to a degree, both mental and physical. So I'm curious if people here think its a little I aim or if its a essence aim. Im curious if others have found more motivation or understanding of the role this plays the more they observe and see themselves. Or if its more so an external influence. of course health can be different for people too. Some seek physical health, others mental health. The fourth way could also be considered a health in some way. So where does this aim lay? Hope that makes sense :)

Personally, i think that when an 'I' sort of solidifies and becomes a solid state, where no other I is battling it, it has then become more on level with the soul/essence than a fragmentation. So say for example with the diet, im sure when everyone started they had the quarreling between eating some cake, and not eating the cake. Sometimes one I won, sometimes the other.

But the more you exercise the part that does not want to eat some cake, i think this conscious struggle and battle begins to crystallize that part of you. Leading you to not have to battle anymore. So you can walk past the cake isle and not even bat an eyelid or get those ''maybe just one'' thoughts.

So with health, i still think it is a battle of I's. As its still a physical attribute, that has no importance to our essence.
One part of you may want to be healthy to look good, one to feel good, maybe one to tell everyone that they are now 'healthy'. There may also be a part of you that wants to sit and eat pizza, because it is lazy and well... Likes pizza.
With all the knowledge we collect about being healthy for our greater aim, then we can utilize the former ones to our benefit. We then also have to battle the narcissistic parts of them I's aswell, OSIT.

I think that health, along with so much more, is just another part of the overall aim that we have to get control of. So i would say its just another part of the house... The kitchen maybe :P?

Also i would ask the question; why do i want to be healthy? Im not everyone through their life has really cared, or known the importance of such a task. Seems to be just another external influence like everything esle... Albeit a very useful one!
 

placematt

Jedi Master
FOTCM Member
Huxley said:
wand3rer said:
Hey Luc,
Do you think health is something these I's strive for or is it a soul/ essence aim that is just filtered through. I have been wondering because some people have very strong aims for personal health and other's not so. But health is essentially life to a degree, both mental and physical. So I'm curious if people here think its a little I aim or if its a essence aim. Im curious if others have found more motivation or understanding of the role this plays the more they observe and see themselves. Or if its more so an external influence. of course health can be different for people too. Some seek physical health, others mental health. The fourth way could also be considered a health in some way. So where does this aim lay? Hope that makes sense :)

Personally, i think that when an 'I' sort of solidifies and becomes a solid state, where no other I is battling it, it has then become more on level with the soul/essence than a fragmentation. So say for example with the diet, im sure when everyone started they had the quarreling between eating some cake, and not eating the cake. Sometimes one I won, sometimes the other.

But the more you exercise the part that does not want to eat some cake, i think this conscious struggle and battle begins to crystallize that part of you. Leading you to not have to battle anymore. So you can walk past the cake isle and not even bat an eyelid or get those ''maybe just one'' thoughts.

So with health, i still think it is a battle of I's. As its still a physical attribute, that has no importance to our essence.
One part of you may want to be healthy to look good, one to feel good, maybe one to tell everyone that they are now 'healthy'. There may also be a part of you that wants to sit and eat pizza, because it is lazy and well... Likes pizza.
With all the knowledge we collect about being healthy for our greater aim, then we can utilize the former ones to our benefit. We then also have to battle the narcissistic parts of them I's aswell, OSIT.

I think that health, along with so much more, is just another part of the overall aim that we have to get control of. So i would say its just another part of the house... The kitchen maybe :P?

Also i would ask the question; why do i want to be healthy? Im not everyone through their life has really cared, or known the importance of such a task. Seems to be just another external influence like everything esle... Albeit a very useful one!

Hey Huxley, thats a good way of putting it i think. That by educating, gathering knowledge, the battle with the I to not eat the cake is awareness? Im sure it takes time to create a solidified awareness when it comes to health, but knowledge and the observation of I's, shows which I isn't right for the throne? Makes a lot of sense actually. I forgot about the input of knowledge when it comes to the battle between I's.

Haha the kitchen indeed, and i do agree about the external influence too. That it only becomes a part of our essence through the decisions of what not to eat from the knowledge we have. Food for thought anyway! (see what i did there) :) Appreciate the response!!
 

luc

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FOTCM Member
Hi wand3rer,

I think Huxley raised some very good points!

To rephrase it in my own words: I think "working for one's health" can be mechanical behavior/just a random little I, or it can be an expression of the essence. For example, I think many people in the wider Paleo/Keto community are "health nuts", who are driven by an extreme desire to be healthy, fit and athletic. But why? Some may just want to "look good", others may use it to hide from traumas, still others found a quasi-religion in this... I think Gurdjieff would say they "crystallized on a wrong foundation", meaning they identify with something so strongly that it allows them to overcome other desires - like "eating that cake". While that is certainly healthy, it may not be an expression of the essence.

On the other hand, if you try to become healthy as a means to an end, in context of 4th way Work, as in: having more energy to self-observe, deal with programs and DO, this would be a good thing, osit. Generally, maybe one could say that the goal is more to let our essence/our consciousness "shine through", and that this is the goal of working with little I's and working on our programs, including our attachment to toxic food. That is my understanding at least.
 

naorma

Dagobah Resident
luc said:
obyvatel said:
naorma said:
Just a short remark to the various I's.

I like that concept and use it from time to time in the following way:
All these I's are ruled by my soul, my true being.
So very often this soul or a higher I give orders and then "I" "wait" until the right "I" turns up to follow that order.
As Luc has described in the beginning it may take a while because other I's want also to do something. Meanwhile I learned not to worry because I know that always the right "I" comes up and does what my order was . . .

;)

Have you read any recommended 4th Way book - like "In Search of the Miraculous" (ISOTM) by Ouspenski or the Gnosis trilogy by Mouravieff? The term little "i" is taken from these esoteric texts but the concepts are verified through modern psychology which has come to the same conclusion about the basic lack of unity within the human psyche . "Myth of Sanity" by Martha Stout is one such psychology book also in the recommended reading list.

What you wrote above is the goal of 4th Way Work. It is not a common state for humanity.

I agree with obyvatel here - I think Gurdjieff's point was that usually, we have no clue at all that we are governed by many little I's, and only after serious Work we may start observing them. Changing these patterns requires even more Work, and even then, we fall asleep all the time again, meaning we become unconscious of our little I's and/or are unable to do anything about them.

Put another way, it's not our "soul" that chooses these little I's, on the contrary, it's what G. calls our (false) personality, which is just a random product of outside influences and is unable to achieve any meaningful aim. Castenada calls it the "predator's mind", which he describes as a "foreign installation". I think it's important to acknowledge that we usually are not guided by our "soul", even if we have worked on this for a long time...

Men is a machine - and if he starts realising it he might stop being one. That's one of Gurdijeffs remarks, I remember.
If you do spinning for a long time the result is that you get closer to your soul, you realize that there is the same inside yourself than outside yourself. And I think this is the real "You".

Yes, I started reading "In Search of the Miraculous". The little I's are described there, I think I remember that. I switched to read Gurdijeffs texts: Beelzebubs tales to his grandson ....

Gurdijeff learned a lot from the Sufis . . . Just a short answer, because time is already short again. :flowers:
 
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