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This is Freedom Essay 11
The difficulty of reading about the human condition — which Plato predicted —
and the solution
By Jeremy Griffith, 2018
In the previous video in this Introductory Series (Video/Freedom Essay 10), Jeremy Griffith described humans’ historic fear of the human condition—the question of whether we humans are essentially ‘good’, and, if so, what is the cause of our destructive, insensitive and cruel, so called ‘evil’ side—as a fear that has been so great that almost everyone has had no choice but to determinedly avoid thinking about the subject. The very serious problem with this historic fear of the human condition and resulting avoidance of it is that now that understanding of the human condition has at last been found and finally made safe to confront, the mind of almost every person is subconsciously too afraid to go near the subject and discover that this previously terrifying realm has in fact been rendered safe.
As soon as discussion of the human condition begins, almost everyone’s mind becomes subconsciously alert to the fact they are being taken into what has been a completely off-limits realm and consequently starts blocking out what is being said. Their mind finds it difficult taking in or ‘hearing’ what is being said; it suffers from a ‘DEAF EFFECT’ to what is being presented, with the tragic consequence being that they miss out on the most precious of all gifts for humans of the understanding that liberates and transforms them from the horror of our species’ psychosis!
Indeed, the reality is that the problem of the ‘deaf effect’ is typically so great that unless readers are forewarned of the problem and shown how to overcome it—which is the purpose of the presentation below—they will find reading about the human condition very difficult, if not impossible:
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The Transcript of this video
Our historic fear of the human condition, and the ‘deaf effect’ it causes when trying to read about the human condition
In the previous Video/F. Essay 10, I described humans’ historic fear of the human condition as being so great that almost everyone has had no choice but to determinedly avoid thinking about the subject. The very serious problem with this historic fear and avoidance is that now that understanding of the human condition has at last been found and made safe to confront, the mind of almost everyone is subconsciously too afraid to go near the subject and discover that this previously terrifying realm has been rendered safe to confront and understand. As the saying goes, ‘once bitten, twice shy’!
Yes, the tragedy is that while the ‘holy grail’ of humanity’s heroic journey of conscious thought and enquiry has been to find the all-redeeming and transforming understanding of our species’ ‘fallen’, soul-corrupted, innocence-destroyed, Garden-of-Eden-abandoned, seemingly horrifically flawed angry, egocentric and alienated condition, virtually every human finds reading the presentation of it impossible. (I should mention that F. Essay 21 explains how our distant ape ancestors came to live in a completely cooperative and loving, Edenic state of innocence, the instinctive memory of which is our moral conscience or soul.) As soon as discussion of the human condition begins, the mind of almost everyone becomes subconsciously alert to the fact they are being taken into what has been a completely off-limits realm and consequently starts blocking out what is being said. Their mind finds it difficult taking in or ‘hearing’ what is being said; it suffers from a ‘DEAF EFFECT’ to what is being presented, with the tragic consequence being that they don’t discover the understanding that liberates and transforms them from the horror of the human condition!
The situation is akin to someone who suffers from a dreadful fear of snakes being given a book that will cure them of their phobia, but since the cure in the book unavoidably involves discussion of snakes, as soon as they try to read the book their fear stops them from being able to do so, and so they miss out on being cured.
As a way of re-emphasising the extent of humans’ fear of the human condition, there is a poem by Gerard Manley Hopkins titled ‘No Worst, There Is None’ (1885) that, as the title suggests, describes just how unbearable the depression from thinking about the issue of the human condition has historically been—there really has been ‘no[thing]’ ‘wors[e]’! In particular, the poem contains the line: ‘O the mind, mind has mountains; cliffs of fall, frightful, sheer, no-man-fathomed’. For nearly all humans, whenever they dared to scale the ‘mountains’ in their ‘mind’ and enter the cold, sharp, icy world above the snow-line of what they find bearable to think about, and begin to dwell on the subject of the human condition, they risked ‘fall[ing]’ down ‘frightful, sheer’ ‘cliffs’ of unbearable self-confrontation and depression.
The great psychoanalyst Carl Jung wasn’t exaggerating the depressing effect of engaging with the human condition when he wrote: ‘When it [our shadow, which is the brutally competitive and aggressive darker aspects of our corrupted condition] appears…it is quite within the bounds of possibility for a man to recognize the relative evil of his nature, but it is a rare and shattering experience for him to gaze into the face of absolute evil’ (Aion: Researches into the Phenomenology of the Self, 1959; tr. R. Hull, The Collected Works of C.G. Jung, Vol. 9/2, p.10). The ‘face of absolute evil’ Jung refers to is the ‘shattering’ possibility that we humans really are just a cancerous blight on this planet, evil beings that for no apparent reason wilfully destroyed our species’ original Garden-of-Eden state of innocent harmony and togetherness. A species that seemingly went mad and took itself from utopia to dystopia.
Yes, the issue of our soul-corrupted, ‘good’ and ‘evil’-conflicted human condition has been such a fearful subject that, until now, it hasn’t been ‘fathomed’; the wonderfully redeeming and transforming understanding of it hasn’t been available. As I explain in Video/F. Essays 3 & 4, the essential problem was that science had to find understanding of the differences in the way genes and nerves process information before it would be possible to explain the human condition—the tragic consequences of this situation being that the human race has had to live for some 2 million years without any possibility of finding the fabulously reconciling and rehabilitating understanding! And, without that vital understanding, trying to confront the subject has only ever led to ‘sheer’ ‘cliffs of fall’ of ‘frightful’ depression.
As I briefly mentioned in the previous Video/F. Essay 10, and as is much more fully explained in F. Essay 30, what 12 to 15-year-old adolescents have had to go through trying to understand the human condition without the true explanation for it, has been so excruciatingly, indeed suicidally, depressing that virtually every adolescent eventually learnt they had no choice but to resign themselves to living a life of determined denial of the whole subject. As is explained in F. Essay 30, only a few ‘ships at sea’ avoided Resignation; ‘ships at sea’ being individuals who, as it were, refused to pull into a ‘port’ when the ‘storms’ of self-confrontation came—basically individuals who chose honest madness over alienated stability. The only others who have avoided Resignation are the very rare few who happened to have such an exceptionally nurtured and sheltered upbringing that they didn’t find the subject of the corrupted condition of the human race unbearably self-confronting—which, I should explain, was necessarily my situation, ‘necessarily’ because I most definitely wouldn’t have been able to confront, think truthfully about and ultimately find the fully accountable, true explanation of the human condition that I have found if it wasn’t my situation. [You can read a short biography of Jeremy Griffith by Professor Harry Prosen in F. Essay 49.]
Again, the very serious problem that emerges now that wonderfully relieving understanding of the human condition has at last been found is that this terrible experience that virtually everyone went through when they were adolescents means that virtually everyone is subconsciously too fearful of the subject of the human condition to be able to effectively read analysis of it and discover that the ‘mountains’ in our ‘mind’ have at last been ‘fathomed’ and they can now be free of the human condition.
There HAS been an ‘elephant in our living rooms’, a massively important issue, in fact the most fundamental and important of all issues, yet the one issue we couldn’t look at—and we can now see what that suspected ‘elephant’ actually was: the human condition! Christ said, ‘the truth will set you free’ (Bible, John 8:32), and Carl Jung was forever saying that ‘wholeness for humans depends on the ability to own their own shadow’, but the problem is almost no one is able to access the all-explaining and all-important ‘truth’ about the dark ‘shadow’ of our condition that ‘set[s]’ us ‘free’ and makes us ‘whole’!
Yes, the reality is that the problem of the ‘deaf effect’ is typically so great that unless readers are forewarned of the problem and shown how to overcome it, which is the purpose of this presentation, almost all will find reading about the human condition impossible, and so will miss out on the most precious of all gifts for humans of their liberation from the human condition!
Examples of the ‘deaf effect’
The following are typical responses from people who have tried to read my books about the human condition: ‘When I first read this material all I saw were a lot of black marks on white paper’; and, ‘Reading this is like reading another language—you know it’s English, you can understand the words, but the concepts are so basic and so different that they are almost incomprehensible—it’s a paradigm shift of a read’; and, ‘This stuff is so head on it can be crippling, which, initially at least, can make it hard to get behind what’s being said and access the profundity of where it’s coming from’; and, ‘At first I found this information difficult to absorb, in fact my wife and I would sit in bed and read a page together, and then re-read it a number of times, but still we couldn’t understand what was written there and ended up thinking it must be due to poor expression.’
Unaware of our psychological denial of the human condition, we blame the presentation
As the last response above indicates, a consequence of being unaware that this resistance and block-out is occurring in the reader’s mind (because when a person is in denial of something they aren’t aware they are in denial, since obviously if they were they wouldn’t be in denial of it!) is that they naturally blame the inaccessibility of what is being put forward on flaws in the presentation; they think it is, as readers of my books have so often said, ‘badly written’, ‘impenetrably dense’, ‘disjointed’, ‘confusingly worded’, ‘too intellectual for me to understand’, ‘it takes time to get used to Jeremy’s strange way of writing’, ‘it’s long-winded’, ‘unnecessarily repetitive of vague points’, ‘desperately needs editing’, and even ‘lacking in any substance or meaning’. Frustrated readers have gone so far as to request ‘an executive summary so I have some idea of what it is that you’re trying to say’!
Plato predicted the ‘deaf effect’
To help evidence just how real the problem of the ‘deaf effect’ is, the following has to be the best analogy and description of humans’ fear of the human condition and of the ‘deaf effect’ it causes that has ever been given. It’s from that greatest of all philosophers, Plato, way back in the Golden Age of Greece, some 360 years before Christ. As I mentioned in the fourth video/essay, the greatness of Plato as a philosopher (philosophy being the study of ‘the truths underlying all reality’ (Macquarie Dictionary, 3rd edn, 1998)) was attested to by Alfred North (A.N.) Whitehead, himself one of the most highly regarded philosophers of the twentieth century, when he described the history of philosophy as being merely ‘a series of footnotes to Plato’. (see par. 81 of FREEDOM)
So what was Plato’s marvellously descriptive analogy of humans’ extreme fear of the human condition and what importance did he place on the resulting difficulty of the ‘deaf effect’ in his most profound contribution to the study of ‘the truths underlying all reality’? Well, Plato’s most acclaimed work is The Republic and the central focus of The Republic is ‘our human condition’; and, most revealingly, in describing ‘our human condition’, Plato metaphorically depicted humans as having to live ‘a long way underground’ in a ‘cave’ hiding from the ‘painful’ issue of ‘the imperfections of human life’—those ‘imperfections’ being the issue of the human condition, the issue of why, when the ideals are to be cooperative and loving, we humans are so competitive and aggressive. So the greatest of philosophers recognised that the central problem in understanding the ‘reality’ of our behaviour is our fear of the human condition!
This is what Plato wrote so long ago but it remains oh-so-true (the underlinings are my emphasis): ‘I want you to go on to picture the enlightenment or ignorance of our human conditions somewhat as follows. Imagine an underground chamber, like a cave with an entrance open to the daylight and running a long way underground. In this chamber are men who have been prisoners there.’ Plato described how the cave’s exit is blocked by a ‘fire’ that ‘corresponds…to the power of the sun’, which the cave prisoners have to hide from because its searing, ‘painful’ ‘light’ would make ‘visible’ the unbearably depressing issue of ‘the imperfections of human life’. Fearing such self-confrontation, the cave prisoners have to ‘take refuge’ ‘a long way underground’ in the dark ‘cave’ where there are only some ‘shadows thrown by the fire’ that represent a ‘mere illusion’ of the ‘real’ world outside the cave. The allegory makes clear that while ‘the sun…makes the things we see visible’, such that without it we can only ‘see dimly and appear to be almost blind’, having to hide in the ‘cave’ of ‘illusion’ and endure ‘almost blind’ alienation has been infinitely preferable to facing the ‘painful’ issue of ‘our [seemingly imperfect] human condition’. (See par. 83 of FREEDOM, or you can view all these quotes from The Republic that appear in this and the next two paragraphs highlighted where they actually appear in The Republic at . You can also see the quote from Encarta Encyclopedia that is mentioned in the next paragraph highlighted in that Encyclopedia at .)
With regard to the problem of the ‘deaf effect’ response the ‘cave’ ‘prisoners’ would have to reading or hearing about the human condition, Plato then described what occurs when, as summarised in the Encarta Encyclopedia, someone ‘escapes from the cave into the light of day’ and ‘sees for the first time the real world and returns to the cave’ to help the cave prisoners ‘Escape into the sun-filled setting outside the cave [which] symbolizes the transition to the real world…which is the proper object of knowledge’. Plato wrote that ‘it would hurt his [the cave’s prisoner’s] eyes and he would turn back and take refuge in the things which he could see [take refuge in all the dishonest, illusionary explanations for human behaviour that we have become accustomed to from human-condition-avoiding, mechanistic science, a description of which is given in F. Essay 14], which he would think really far clearer than the things being shown him. And if he were forcibly dragged up the steep and rocky ascent [out of the cave of denial] and not let go till he had been dragged out into the sunlight [shown the truthful, real description of our human condition], the process would be a painful one, to which he would much object, and when he emerged into the light his eyes would be so overwhelmed by the brightness of it that he wouldn’t be able to see a single one of the things he was now told were real.’ Significantly, Plato then added, ‘Certainly not at first. Because he would need to grow accustomed to the light before he could see things in the world outside the cave’. (see par. 83 of FREEDOM)
So again, in his central and main insight into ‘the truths underlying all reality’ of ‘our human condition’, the greatest of all philosophers warned that when we ‘first’ start reading about what ‘our human condition’ really is we ‘wouldn’t be able to see a single one of the things he was now told were real’. The italicised emphasis on ‘really is’ is because many refer to, and even claim to explain, the human condition without engaging with what it really is, namely the issue of our horrendously psychologically upset angry, egocentric and alienated lives—again, all this dishonest biology is described in three essays’ time, which is in F. Essay 14.
I might mention that Plato went on to also warn that when understanding of the human condition eventually arrived it would not only cause the ‘deaf effect’, it would also cause an extremely defensive and angry reaction in some people—writing that some of the ‘cave’ ‘prisoners’ ‘would say that his [the person who attempts to bring understanding to the human condition] visit to the upper world had ruined his sight [they would treat him as mad], and that the ascent [out of the cave] was not worth even attempting. And if anyone tried to release them and lead them up, they would kill him if they could lay hands on him’! As is documented in F. Essay 56 and in chapter 6:12 of FREEDOM, we in the World Transformation Movement (WTM) endured years of this vicious, try-to-‘kill him’-type persecution. Since it is well known by psychologists that ‘denials fight back with a vengeance when faced with annihilation’, it is not surprising that this most denied and repressed of all truths of the issue of the human condition was going to meet extreme resistance when the real and true analysis of it appeared. Additionally, being a scientific insight, this understanding of the human condition has to endure the initial resistance new ideas in science have typically always encountered—as playwright George Bernard Shaw pointed out, ‘All great truths begin as blasphemies’ (Annajanska, 1919). Fortunately, the early ‘begin[ning]’ stage when the resistance and persecution is the greatest, is now behind us. After an Australia-wide, extremely malicious and totally fabricated attack was made on our work at the WTM during the mid 1990s—we were falsely accused of being a dangerous cυlt, the absurdity of which is described in F. Essay 56—we successfully sued for defamation. In what was at the time the biggest defamation case in Australia’s history, the unanimous court ruling identified the real motivation for the attack when it said that ‘aspects of Mr Griffith’s work are apt to make those who do take the trouble to grapple with it uncomfortable. It involves reflections upon subject-matter including the purpose of human existence which may, of its nature, cause an adverse reaction as it touches upon issues which some would regard as threatening to their ideals, values or even world views’. This horrible saga is documented in the section on our website.
Returning to the problem of the ‘deaf effect’, the rock band U2’s 1992 song Staring At The Sun (the evocative cover of which is shown above) contains these lyrics that reinforce what Plato said about the ‘deaf effect’: ‘It’s been a long hot summer, let’s get under cover, don’t try too hard to think, don’t think at all. I’m not the only one staring at the sun, afraid of what you’d find if you take a look inside. Not just deaf and dumb, I’m staring at the sun, not the only one who’s happy to go blind.’
So yes, for almost everyone, the ‘deaf effect’ will be a very significant problem when trying to read the fully accountable and thus true analysis of the human condition—which means readers do very much need to be forewarned of, and shown how to overcome, the ‘deaf effect’.
The extent of the potential tragedy of the situation
Before presenting the various options for overcoming the ‘deaf effect’, I want to spell out just how potentially tragic this situation is where the all-relieving understanding of the human condition has been found but virtually no one can access it.
The truth is, the potential tragedy of this situation really COULD NOT be greater. To employ the wonderful imagery of Martin Luther King Jr’s ‘dream’ of finding the reconciling understanding of the human condition—he said when that happens, ‘allow [the bells of] freedom to ring…from every village and every hamlet, from every state and every city’ because ‘all of God’s children, black men and white men, Jews and Gentiles, Protestants and Catholics’ can ‘join hands and sing’, ‘Free at last! Free at last! Thank God Almighty, we are free at last!’ (‘I Have A Dream’ speech, 28 Aug. 1963). YES, DR KING, BUT THE TRAGEDY IS VIRTUALLY NO ONE CAN HEAR ‘THE BELLS’ HERALDING OUR SPECIES’ ‘FREEDOM’!
The following collection of extraordinarily honest quotes makes it very clear that the great hope, faith and trust of the whole human race has been that one day the all-redeeming and all-transforming, human-race-saving understanding of the human condition would be found, and further they reveal how absolutely desperately needed that understanding is right now on Earth. So these quotes will make it very clear just how great this potential tragedy is where the understanding of the human condition that is pleaded for in all these quotes HAS FINALLY BEEN FOUND BUT WILL BE OF ABSOLUTELY NO CONSEQUENCE IF THE ‘DEAF EFFECT’ CAN’T BE OVERCOME!
Benjamin Disraeli, a former Prime Minister of Great Britain, once famously said about not being able to find the redeeming understanding of the human condition, ‘Stranded halfway between ape and angel is no place to stop’. The essayist Jonathan Swift made a similarly anguished plea that he ‘not die here in a rage, like a poisoned rat in a hole’. The cellist Pablo Casals also recognised the urgency of solving the human condition when he said, ‘The situation is hopeless, we must take the next step’, as did the journalist Doug Anderson when he wrote, ‘Time may well be dwindling for us to enlighten ourselves…Tragic to die of thirst half a yard from the well.’ The clinical psychologist Maureen O’Hara was another who stressed the need for the redeeming understanding of the human condition when she said that ‘humanity is either standing on the brink of “a quantum leap in human psychological capabilities or heading for a global nervous breakdown”’—as was psychoanalyst Carl Jung when he said, ‘Man everywhere is dangerously unaware of himself. We really know nothing about the nature of man, and unless we hurry to get to know ourselves we are in dangerous trouble.’ General Omar Bradley was certainly clear-sighted when, in pointing out science’s failings, he said, ‘The world has achieved brilliance…without conscience. Ours is a world of nuclear giants and ethical infants.’ The psychotherapist Wayne Dyer also perfectly summarised our species’ plight when he said, ‘We’ve come to a place…where we can either destroy ourselves or discover our divineness’, as did the great Australian educator, Sir James Darling (who, incidentally, I was fortunate enough to have as my headmaster when I attended Geelong Grammar School, a school of such renown that HRH Prince Charles came half way around the world to attend), when he said, ‘The time is past for help which is only a Band-Aid. It is time for radical thinking and for a solution on the grand scale.’ (See pars 226 & 228 of FREEDOM for sources.)
Yes, the human race has absolutely desperately needed to find the all-redeeming and all-liberating and all-transforming ‘solution on the grand scale’ insight that reveals ‘our divineness’, so to have finally found that most precious of all insights and then not be able to discover that it has been found because, as Plato predicted, people aren’t ‘able to see a single one of the things he was now told were real’, does have the potential to be the most horrendous tragedy in the history of planet Earth! The conscious mind, nature’s greatest invention, is on the brink of the most awful outcome imaginable—and this after eons of incredible, beyond description, effort and sacrifice by humans to find understanding of the human condition. (F. Essay 55 provides analysis of the very serious endgame situation that humanity has now entered and by so doing further spells out the potential incredible tragedy posed by the ‘deaf effect’.)
So how can the ‘deaf effect’ be overcome?
THE CRUCIAL QUESTION THEN IS, HOW ARE RESIGNED ADULTS TO OVERCOME THE ‘DEAF EFFECT’ SUFFICIENTLY TO BE ABLE TO EFFECTIVELY READ FREEDOM AND ACCESS THE ALL-RELIEVING AND ALL-TRANSFORMING, HUMAN-RACE-SAVING UNDERSTANDING OF THE HUMAN CONDITION?
Plato indicated the answer when he said that in order to achieve, as summarised in Encarta, the fabulous ‘transition to the real world’, ‘which is the proper object of knowledge’, the ‘cave’ ‘prisoner’ ‘would need to grow accustomed to the light’ of the understanding of ‘the imperfections of human life’, which is the ‘human condition’.
Over 40 years of experience presenting the fully accountable, all-clarifying and transforming understanding of the human condition that is contained in my many books and other presentations has confirmed that to overcome the ‘deaf effect’ people do just ‘need to grow accustomed to the light’ of the understanding.
When Alvin Toffler wrote in his famous 1970 book Future Shock about ‘the shattering stress and disorientation that we induce in individuals by subjecting them to too much change in too short a time’ (p.4), he was actually anticipating the immense shock that the arrival of understanding of the human condition would inevitably bring. It IS the greatest of shocks to be hiding in Plato’s dark cave of denial of the human condition and to then suddenly be ‘dragged out into the sunlight’ of the all-liberating but at the same time all-revealing truth about the human condition—but, again, as Plato also said, the resigned ‘cave’ ‘prisoner’ just ‘need[s] to grow accustomed to the light’.
What my 40 years of experience has shown is that you, the reader, have four options with this difficult-to-read understanding of the human condition, which I’ll now list before going through each of them in some detail. You can decide not to read the material and so miss out on your chance to be liberated from the human condition; you can tough it out by determinedly and doggedly forcing yourself to read the explanation; you can patiently get there by gradually reading and re-reading, and/or watching and re-watching, and/or listening and re-listening to, presentations of the explanation; or you can be assisted by having someone go through the explanation and its safe and compassionate effectiveness in explaining human behaviour with you. As I will now describe, it’s the last of these options that is by far the best way to overcome the ‘deaf effect’ and access this all-liberating and all-transforming and world-saving understanding of the human condition.
Option 1: You can decide not to read the material
A few years ago, a university student said to his friends about one of my books, ‘Don’t read that book because it’s true!’ While this comment seems nonsensical because surely everyone wants to find a book that’s full of ‘tru[th]’, it’s actually logical because the human condition has been the most terrifying of subjects, and the real ‘tru[th]’ about humans hasn’t been something people wanted to read about. What is wrong, however, with this statement is that it fails to communicate the fact that someone couldn’t have written such a deeply confronting ‘true’ book about the human condition and not have found understanding of it; and, beyond that, having found understanding of the human condition, how precious and worth reading such a book would be.
Because of the extreme difficulty of the ‘deaf effect’, it makes sense that initially few people will be able to overcome it and discover the liberating and transforming explanation of the human condition that is now available. And, sure enough, for much of the 40 years since I made this liberating explanation public there has been little appreciation and support for the explanation. In fact, it also makes sense that there will be an initial reaction of hostility towards such human-condition-confronting analysis, and, as I’ve described, that initial reaction is what these understandings had to endure during the 1990s and early 2000s. As I mentioned, thankfully that initially totally cynical and vicious persecution stage is behind us, but there are other stages we still have to progress through before there will, we fully intend, be universal acceptance.
As I illustrated earlier with George Bernard Shaw’s quote that ‘All great truths begin as blasphemies’, there is also the problem that any meritorious new idea in science has typically had to go through stages of resistance, and even persecution, before gaining universal acceptance. The philosopher Arthur Schopenhauer set out the stages when he said that ‘the reception of any successful new scientific hypothesis goes through predictable phases before being accepted’. First, ‘it is ridiculed’ and ‘violently opposed’. Second, after support begins to accumulate, ‘it is stated that it may be true but it’s not particularly relevant’. Third, ‘after it has clearly influenced the field it is admitted to be true and relevant but the same critics assert that the idea is not original’. Finally, ‘it is accepted as being self-evident’ (see par. 590 of FREEDOM). Since no new idea in science could be anywhere near as challenging of the existing human-condition-denying, dishonest paradigm of science as the arrival of this breakthrough understanding of the human condition that ushers in a whole new human-condition-confronting, honest paradigm, it follows that its journey of acceptance is also going to be by far the most challenging. (Just how revolutionary it is for the scientific establishment is made abundantly clear in F. Essay 14.)
The stage we are now at in 2018 is that strong recognition of the ‘self-evident’ truth of the understandings is at last emerging, which is extremely exciting, but most people are still completely stymied by the ‘deaf effect’ and as a result are finding themselves unable to effectively read the presentations of the understanding—and so they are tragically not discovering that they can be free from the human condition.
Option 2: You can tough it out
The second option of ‘toughing it out’ by doggedly forcing yourself to read the explanation is well illustrated by this reader’s determined approach: ‘If it can be of any help to others in how to overcome the deaf effect, I will share with you my own personal approach. I took a step back and became removed from all my pre-conceived ideas and beliefs by metaphorically putting on a white lab coat and becoming a scientist overseeing the evolutionary journey of mankind, and from that detached perspective it’s not so shocking and painful. I had to de-personalise it. And in so doing I managed to comprehend things in a more expanded and in depth way rather than fearfully skimming the surface of things. I am now embarking on my second read of the book as I feel that there is so much more for me to assimilate. This book is not for the faint hearted. It is for the courageous survivors of the greatest evolutionary journey undertaken by the human race. We emerge battered, bruised and in tatters, but it’s now time to step forward into our world with our newly illuminated light of true perception and heal our wounded selves and world’ (Name withheld, letter to the WTM, 18 Aug. 2017).
That was courageous, but this reader was still feeling ‘battered, bruised and in tatters’ which shows that her technique wasn’t an easy one, and that she’s still not out in the clear and fully benefiting from the ‘true perception’ she now has. ‘Toughing it out’ is obviously not an easy way of overcoming the ‘deaf effect’.
Option 3: You can patiently get there
The third technique of patiently overcoming the ‘deaf effect’ by persisting with reading and/or watching and/or listening to presentations of the explanation has been a reasonably effective strategy, but it still involves a struggle, as this online article about my 2003 book, A Species In Denial, indicates: ‘I read it in 2005, and at the time it was not an easy read. The core concepts keep slipping from my mental grasp, at the time I put it down to bad writing, however a second reading revealed something the Author had indicated from the outset—your mind doesn’t want to understand the content. The second read was quick and painless… [and I was then able to see that] The cause of the malaise [in humans] is exposed, remedied and the reader is left with at the very least an understanding of themselves, and for me something of an optimism for the future’ (‘Fitzy’, Humanitus Interruptus – Great Minds of Today, 21 Oct. 2011; see www.wtmsources.com/106).
The following is another example of someone patiently re-reading the explanation and discovering its truthfulness. This is an extract from what the renowned Australian journalist and broadcaster Brian Carlton said to me during an interview in 2014 (which can be viewed at www.humancondition.com/carlton-video): ‘I was already aware of Jeremy’s work. In fact, I interviewed Jeremy on my radio show about one of his earlier books, and I remember when I opened the interview to the listeners to call in there was so much interest the interview went for almost two hours and I’m really not exaggerating…I remember when I first read one of your [Jeremy’s] books I went through a stage where I couldn’t quite get my head around it. I got about half of it and it was a little confusing and a little dense but I didn’t give up. I kept reading it and in time your explanations did start to become clear and it made a hell of a lot of sense to me…The process of stripping off the denial is the difficult part, but once you’ve done that it’s relatively simple from there on in I’ve found. The answers become glaringly obvious…It’s an intellectual epiphany…I have a more complete understanding of myself, everybody around me, the society at large, the way the planet works. It’s a revelation! I don’t use that in a religious sense, it’s a quantifiably different thing but it has a similar impact on you…It’s very simple, it’s not hard. The end process, the revelation, if you like, is easy and reassuring and calming and self-accepting. Getting there is the difficult bit…When you get it, it is an event. You remember the day, you remember the section of the book, you remember when it happened, it stays with you, it’s fresh.’
Option 4: You can be assisted through the ‘deaf effect’
As I said, this option of being assisted through the ‘deaf effect’ by having someone repeatedly go through the explanation, showing how it compassionately and thus safely makes sense of every aspect of human behaviour is by far the best way to overcome the ‘deaf effect’—as this comment shows: ‘When my brother first introduced me to A Species In Denial I read the whole book in 3 weeks and understood absolutely nothing. I said words to the effect that it is a poorly written book, explains nothing and makes no sense. I remember saying stuff like “I’m not upset. I never resigned. I don’t have an ego. I haven’t been bad, and anyway I don’t really care or need this information; I have a great wife, nice home, my health and generally love life. I’ll make it regardless.” [This last comment is a classic example of Plato’s prediction that they would say it’s ‘not worth even attempting’.] [Then] After 12 months of listening to my brother, I thought I’d read the book again. Well my God! Wow! It was like I read a different book. Nearly every criticism I made about the book was incorrect. It was like I was blind the first time I read it. I couldn’t believe it. My personal experience is that it is not easy to understand, accept and apply the concepts in the early stages without a lot of nurturing, support and explanation from others. I’m lucky I had my brother who just kept chipping away, and now I’m free and let me tell you, it’s the best feeling in the world’ (Extracts from comments by Ari Akritidis at the end of F. Essay 15 (14 Apr. 2018, view HERE) & F. Essay 3 (6 Jun. 2018, view HERE)).
You might well be wondering how the Sydney WTM Centre’s pioneer base group of 50 founding members managed to overcome the ‘deaf effect’ and discover the information’s transforming and world-saving importance—an appreciation, I might mention, that is so great they decided that, in the face of all the initial resistance and persecution these understandings were experiencing, they couldn’t afford to have children; which, I should emphasise, is a level of commitment that won’t be necessary once support builds. The answer is they were beneficiaries of this assistance method. They attended a sequence of talks where I presented the Adam Stork analogy and then showed them in example after example how it was able to safely and compassionately make sense of any and every aspect of human life, be it politics, religion, the relationship between men and women, and so on.
Just how effective in eroding the ‘deaf effect’ this method was is revealed by comments to this effect that were frequently made after listening to a second or third introductory talk: ‘That was a much better presentation this time than last time Jeremy, the explanations and descriptions were so much easier to follow.’ The talks were virtually identical—what had dramatically improved was not the quality or content of the presentation but the listener’s ability to take in or ‘hear’ what was being said. As I have mentioned, we can’t be in denial of a subject and know we’re in denial—because if we did we wouldn’t be in denial of it! So it’s very difficult at the time to appreciate that a denial in our mind has been eroded; we inevitably think that it must be the presentation that has improved.
In these talks, while it was the accountability of the explanation that was holding the listener’s interest, most significantly what was also happening was their fear of the issue of the human condition was being eroded. To have someone talking openly and freely about the absolutely forbidden subject of the human condition is psychologically immensely reassuring because how could they be speaking so freely if the subject of the human condition hadn’t been rendered benign. In effect, what was happening was that they were being taken into a ‘room’ that subconsciously they were living in mortal fear of and happily taken into every corner of it—shown how there was no longer anything to fear in any part of that previously terrifying ‘room’. Certainly to begin with their mind was in such shock that they could hardly take in what was being said, or, in the room analogy, see anything that was in the room, take in the colours of the walls, or what furniture was there—but gradually their mind relaxed and could take in or ‘hear’ and understand everything that was being explained, or, in the room analogy, be able to sufficiently come out of shock to take in and see what’s actually in the room. The human condition has been a terrifying subject, but if someone ‘holds your hand’ and reassuringly shows you that the subject is now safe to look at, then it is possible to overcome your fear.
The point is, if you have just read/watched/listened to the explanation of the human condition, or are about to, then you will very likely benefit enormously from our free WTM DEAF EFFECT COURSE in F. Essay 13 that presents these introductory ‘deaf effect’-eroding talks. Each of these talks involve me talking with either a single person or a group of people who, like yourself, are new to this information. And the benefit of me talking with people who are interactive is that what they say as the talk progresses will likely reflect your own thoughts, and that engagement and interaction will greatly help you to follow and connect with the discussion.
Each talk has the same format: I ask the participant/s to nominate some questions they would like answered about human existence, which I then write down and set about answering using the explanation of the human condition we now have. They might ask, ‘I don’t accept that I’ve got any ‘psychological upset’ in me, or that I feel guilty of anything, or that I’m alienated from some innocent soul in me, or that I need transforming, so why should I listen to this?’, or ‘Why do some people hate and some people love Donald Trump?’, or ‘Why do women typically have long hair and men short hair?’, or ‘Why do we humans get so much enjoyment out of winning competitions?’, or ‘How is this going to stop wars and greed and selfishness?’, or ‘How does this save the environment?’, or ‘Why do people pray in church, and is God even real?’—whatever! Then I go through the Adam Stork analogy and then show how it answers their questions. Basically I talk about the explanation of the human condition and how it explains anything and everything, over and over again, and at a certain point what happens is that you will find that you can read about the human condition without encountering any of the problems you initially experienced—like what occurred for the founding members who often said after listening to a second or third introductory talk that ‘the explanations and descriptions were so much easier to follow’.
The fabulous reward when you overcome the ‘deaf effect’
Plato gave this description of how relieved the ‘cave’ ‘prisoner’ would be to be free of his human-condition-avoiding, dishonest, dark, soul-dead existence, saying, ‘when he thought of his first home and what passed for wisdom there, and of his fellow-prisoners, don’t you think he would congratulate himself on his good fortune and be sorry for them?’
Well, the following are some online comments about this immense ‘good fortune’ of being able to access and at last understand the human condition (I know these are comments about a book I wrote, but we have the understanding now that explains that everyone is equally good and worthwhile, so it doesn’t really matter who wrote what anymore): ‘If Plato and Aristotle were alive and read Griffith, they would die happy men’; and, ‘We don’t have to put up with “Not Knowing” anymore’; and, ‘tears stream down my face, so overcome have I been by this book. It is the greatest book on the planet, no wait, in the universe. In fact it is the greatest anything in the universe’; and, ‘I don’t care what question you have, this book will answer it’; and, ‘Here is the breakthrough biological explanation that PROVES we are ALL very, very good’; and, ‘This, to me, is the most significant thing I have ever stumbled across…If it doesn’t hit you right away—it will down the road’; and, ‘Gah! words are too limited for this. Here have some love brother!’; and, ‘This book is why I’m alive enough to scribe to you. Joy and Love to you all.’ (You can read many more of these online comments at .)
So once you have benefited from the WTM DEAF EFFECT COURSE in F. Essay 13, you will be astonished to discover that the seemingly impenetrable ‘fog’ that reading about the human condition causes does begin to lift, and that what is being presented does begin to make extraordinarily accountable sense of human behaviour—and frees you from the human condition forever!
So everyone, join in the great awakening of the human race from having to live in a horrible, horrible cave of darkness, and burst out into the most wonderful, warm, healing, loving, happy, light-filled life imaginable!
The WTM Deaf Effect Course
In the next presentation, Video/F. Essay 12, I give a one-hour introductory talk that summarises what has been explained so far. While this talk is not interactive, it is the initial talk to watch to begin eroding the ‘deaf effect’. Following this introduction, our recommendation is to then watch the interactive talks that are presented in the WTM DEAF EFFECT COURSE in F. Essay 13. As I have mentioned, in the presentation following that, which is F. Essay 14, I describe the the dishonest biological explanations for the human condition, and in particular the extreme danger of the misuse by mechanistic science of the false ‘savage instincts’ excuse for explaining human behaviour.
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Discussion or comment on this essay is welcomed—see below.
Please Note, if you are online you can read, print, download or listen to (as a podcast) any of the following Freedom Essays by clicking on them, or you can find them all at .
These essays were composed in 2017-2018 by Jeremy Griffith, Damon Isherwood,
Fiona Cullen-Ward & Brony FitzGerald at the Sydney WTM Centre.