Alfred The Great Primary Sources

What would you do to improve yourself? Well, let’s step one step backwards. The first question might be, why should you bother improving yourself? And I think the answer to that is something like, so you don’t suffer any more stupidly than you have to. And maybe so others don’t have to either. It is something like that. You know, like there is a true injunction at the base of it. It is not some casual self-help doctrine. It’s that if you do not organize yourself properly, you will pay for it and in a big way. And so will the people around you now, and you could say, well, I do not care about that, but that is actually not true. You actually do care about that because if you’re in pain, you will care about it. And that means you do care about, even if it’s just that negative way, you know, it’s very rare that you can find somebody who’s in excruciating pain who would ever say, well, it would be no better.

If I had been out of this sort of pain is one of the things that brings the notion that it would be better if it didn’t exist along with it, it’s in controvertible. So you get your act together so that there is not any more stupid pain around you than necessary. Well, so then the question might be, well, how would you go about getting your act together? And the answer to this, and this is a phenomenological idea, too. It is something like, look around for something that bothers you and see if you can fix it. So now you think, well, let’s say, let’s say you enter, you can do it in a room. It is quite fun to do it. Just when you are sitting in a room like a room, possibly your bedroom, you can sit there and just sort of meditate on it and think, okay, if I wanted to spend 10 minutes making this room better, what would I have to do?

And you have to ask yourself that, right? It is not a command. It is like a genuine question and things will pop out in the area that, you know, like there’s a stack of papers over there. That’s sort of bugging you. And you know, that maybe little order there are a good thing. And you know, you have not, there’s some rubbish behind your computer screen that you haven’t attended for like six months. And the room would be slightly better if it was a little less dusty and the wires, weren’t all tangled up the same way. And like, if you, if you let yourself just to think about the expanse where you exist at that moment, there’ll be all sorts of things. That’ll pop out in it which you could just fix. And, you know, I might say, well, if you were coming to see me for childbirth, this simplest thing for us to do first would just be for you to arrange your room. You think, well, is that psychotherapy? And the answer is, well, it depends upon how you conceive the limits of your being. And I Would say start where you are able to start.

You know, If, if something announces itself to you, which is a strange way of thinking about it as in need of repair, you could fix, then Hey, fix it. You fix a hundred things like that. Your life will be a whole lot different. Now, I often tell people to repair the things you repeat daily, because people usually think of those as trivial, right? You get, you brush your teeth, you have your breakfast. You know, you’ve got your routines which you go through daily. Well, those likely constitute 50% of your life. And people think, well, they’re mundane. I don’t need to pay attention to them. It’s like, no, no, that is exactly wrong things you do every day. Those are the main things you do. Hands. All you’ve got to do is do the arithmetic. You’ve figured out right away. So a hundred adjustments to your broader domain of being, and there is a lot less rubbish and there’s a great deal less rubbish around it.

A good deal fewer traps that you step into. And so that is in keeping with Ewing’s thought about erasing the dis as soon as you’ve got your mind and your emotions with each other, and as soon as you’re acting that out, then it is possible to extend what you’re willing to consider yourself and start fixing up the things which are part of your broader extent. Now, sometimes you don’t know how to do that. So you might say, imagine you are walking down Bloor street and there’s this guy who’s like alcoholic and schizophrenia and has been on the streets for 10 years. He kind of stumbled towards you and you know, incoherently mutters something, that’s a problem. And it would be useful if you could fix it, but you, haven’t got a clue about how to fix that. You just walk around that and go find something you could fix, since if you muck about it, that not only is it unlikely that you’ll help that person, it’s very probable you’ll get hurt yourself.

So, you know, just because while you’re experiencing things themselves, as in need of repair, doesn’t mean that it is you right then and there, which should repair them. You have to have some humility. You know, you don’t walk up to a helicopter which is not working and just begin tinkering away with it. You have to stay in your domain of competence. But the majority of the time, if people look at their lives, you know, it’s very interesting thing to do. I liked, I liked the idea of the room because you can do that at the drop of a hat. You know, you go back to where you reside and sit down and think, okay, I will make this place better for half an hour.

What should I do If they have to ask And things will just pop up like mad. And it is partly because your mind is a very strange thing. The moment you give it a name, a genuine aim, it’ll reconfigure the entire world in keeping with this goal. That’s really how you see to begin with. And so if you set it a task, especially you have to be genuine about it, which is the reason why you must bring your ideas and emotions together. And then you must get them in your body. So you’re acting consistently. You’ve got to be genuine about the aim, but once you aim, the entire world will reconfigure itself about that goal, which is very strange. And it’s, it’s, it’s technically true. You know, the best example of this, you have all seen this video in which you see the basketballs being tossed back and forth between members of the white team versus the black group.
And well, you’re doing that. A gorilla walks up into the center of the video and don’t see it.

It’s like, you know, in case you thought about that experiment for around five decades, that would be about the ideal amount of time to spend thinking about it. Because what it shows you is that you see what you aim at and that guy, if you can get 1 thing through your head and as a result of even being in college, that would be a good one. You see what you aim at. And so, because one inference you could draw from this is be careful what you aim at,
Right? It what you aim at determines
The way the world manifests itself to you. And so if the world is manifesting itself in a really negative way, one thing to ask is, are you planning at the perfect thing? Now?

You know, I’m not trying to decrease everybody’s problems to an improper aim. People today get cut off at the knees for all sorts of reasons. You know, they get sick, they have accidents, there’s a random element to being that’s for sure. But, and so you don’t need to take anythingthat particular phrase too far, you want to bind it together with the fact that random things do happen to people, but it is still a great thing to ask.