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Brief summary of Selection of Attractive States

 

In fact, the key points of this book can be stated in just a few pages and they might seem so simple and obvious to many people that they would question themselves whether it was really necessary to produce hundreds of pages in case of such a simplicity. However the things which seem so plain and superficial from the general description might seem extremely complicated while trying to put them into practice, while trying to apply those plain and obvious principles to your life activity.

1. Your inner mental world is a world of perceptions and the states composed of them. Whatever you feel, it’s always possible to distinguish isolated perceptions (with a due training). Those perceptions can be either pleasant or unpleasant for you or even neutral for the moment. They are divided into several categories, which are: emotions, thoughts, desires, sensations and certainties. This particular partitioning is not the result of a purely intellectual classification. It’s merely the result of persistent distinguishing of own perceptions, so they delaminate into such categories naturally. Why haven’t it been done before? Why do we still find the most fanciful ways to categorize perceptions? It’s hard to give a proper answer. I believe the psychologists pay way too much attention to theorization and trying to impress themselves and the neophytes and way too little to a real, practical observation of own perceptions. Formal psychology, unfortunately, appears to be caste-ridden discipline with people preoccupied with maintaining their own psychologist status rather than looking for the verity. In the meantime no science which isn’t based on an accurate distinguishing of perceptions can be considered psychology. I can put it otherwise. No variation of “psychology” which is not based on Selection of states described in this book has a right to be called psychology. I can imagine the resentment of those who consider themselves to be psychologists, but I will not abandon my belief. However the experience shows it doesn’t make a difference for them as they live in their own secluded world of diplomas and “schools”, being up in the clouds of esoterical conceptions and vague notion without slightest signs of clarity. On this count they try to reach some absurd disciplines as philosophy or theology which makes their occupation similarly useless and senseless.

2. There’s no law of nature which obliges you to experience unpleasant perceptions and states. It sounds simple but in reality just a plain realization of this fact can turn your life over. You just don’t have to experience unpleasant states. First of all, it refers to negative emotions (NE) and the states, which consist of them: anger, hatred, self-pity, boredom, scorn, offence, dejection, irritation, depression and many others. It’s worth to be read once again: there’s no such a law of nature, which obliges you to experience all of the above or part of it. Perhaps it would sound unfamiliar and even astonishing, but nonetheless it’s a fact: it is possible to manage the perceptions and states, it is possible to select them, it is possible to practice the perceptions engineering. It is not that hard to learn how to experience less and less negative emotions by eliminating them. This requires clarification. It is pointless to suppress negative emotions and pretend not to experience them and seethe with anger from inside. The suppression doesn’t lead to freedom from NEs or rich and intense life. It’s senseless to justify NEs, “accept them as they are” or “experience but not get involved” and perform other verbiage, continuing to experience them at the same time.

The objective lies in eliminating NEs step by step, which means stopping to experience them completely. Experiencing NEs is simply a destructive, evil, suicidal habit which you can get rid of as well as you can of any other unpleasant habits by means of eliminating NEs step by step. It’s necessary to understand clearly what exactly “NEs eliminating” means: at the moment of an NE’s rising you simply draw your attention from this NE and shift it to something pleasant like liking to a dog, tenderness to a girl, anticipation of something interesting and enjoyable. It seems extremely hard in the beginning, but only in the beginning. A new habit will shape up gradually, a habit to draw attention from NE and shift it to a pleasant state. Eliminating NE doesn’t eliminate the problems, which caused those NEs. That’s obvious. But dealing with a problem without NE is much easier, more pleasant and more effective as your common sense is not blurred by hatred or depression, and you are not poisoned by it.

People call NEs “emotions”, but I find it inconvenient. I would call it “emotional cancer”.

3. There are perceptions I call “enlightened perceptions” (EPs), which, in my understanding, are the ones I can call true emotions. People often refer to them as to positive emotions, but I like calling them enlightened perceptions. Some of them I’ve already listed, they are liking, sense of beauty, anticipation, tenderness, but there’s also a sense of mystery, expectancy, gravitation, aspiration, perseverance, gratitude, earnestness, joy and many, many more enlightened perceptions and enlightened states. One of my generalizations asserts that there’s the following law of nature: if you don’t experience NEs at any moment, you start experiencing enlightened perceptions the exact same moment. The inverse proposition is also true: as soon as you experience an EP, you don’t experience NE anymore. Knowing this law will let you easily understand if you experience a negative emotion or an enlightened perception at the moment in case it seems hard to distinguish. You can use one more assumption: if you experience an enlightened perception at the moment, you will know it for sure, with no doubt.

A habit to experience enlightened perceptions can be cultivated as well as we cultivate any other skill – by frequent repetitions and repetitive running through.

It’s easy to tell the huge difference between experiencing negative emotions and enlightened perceptions. In fact, they are seemingly placed at different poles of the psyche, opposed to each other, being fundamentally incompatible. And it becomes even more obvious that it’s senseless to relate them to the same type of perceptions, to emotions. It’s as senseless as to call a delicious cake and rat poison “the food”, and to call health and dying from cancer “the health”.

4. People almost never think. It can be surprising, but that’s the truth. All they do is thoughtlessly (often even without using elementary logic or common sense) grinding and chewing thoughts or parts of thoughts which they’ve heard somewhere before. Their opinions and points of view often contradict to each other, but they try to take no notice of it, to force it out of mind, to forget about it, finding some sort of comfort in that. We finally have to learn how to think. What for? Well, just because it gives a lot of pleasure. And also because common sense and ability to make logical deductions help to make our lives more enjoyable, more comfortable and more interesting.

It’s pretty hard to learn how to think. Not because we will fail in understanding logic, this part doesn’t usually bring too many difficulties, and any of us is capable of constructing more or less reasonable conclusion, for example, in professional activity. The major difficulty of applying logic and common sense lies in the following: if we start reasoning honestly and logically, based on our experience, authentic facts and grounded assumptions, using logic and common sense, the results of these reasonings will bring to the obvious and irreconcilable contradiction with beliefs, conceptions and certainties carried by you and people around. This will inevitably create intrapersonal strain and strain on relations with other people which we usually tend to remove by means of simple stopping to reason and getting back to previous thoughtless way of living. It’s not easy at all to change one’s life by changing over or even breaking what was based on false grounds. Many people refuse to do the changeover, coming back to the life full of morbid and destructive warps, contradictions, stupidities, sufferings, internal and external conflicts which become fundamentally impossible to solve from here to eternity.

5. There are two types of wishes which are as diametrically opposite to each other as negative emotions and enlightened perceptions, which are: joyful wishes and mechanical wishes. As much as it is incorrect to refer negative emotions to “emotions” it’s incorrect to refer mechanical wishes to “wishes”. I would rather call them responsibilities, taken by oneself against free will, despite the aspiration for a pleasant and rich life, despite joyful wishes, as a result of physical and mental pressure, stupidity or dogmatism.

Joyful wishes are the wishes accompanied by anticipation, joy and interest. Experiencing and especially realizing them is very pleasant, one is itching to do it. Not only realization, but the mere experiencing of joyful wishes is pleasant and easily resonating with enlightened perceptions. One is never “lazy” to realize a joyful wish. You can postpone the realization if there’s a stronger joyful wish at the moment, but you will never say that you are too lazy to realize them. Experiencing joyful wishes, thinking about them, talking about them, realizing them separately or together with someone is always very pleasant, it enlivens you, makes your life richer and more full and happy even in case you can’t realize them by some reason.

Mechanical wishes are brought to life by only our beliefs and blind certainties that we “should” act in a specific way. That’s their huge and fundamental difference from joyful wishes and calling them “wishes” is very relative as when a person realizes them, he says “I want to do this” despite the fact that in reality he doesn’t want to do that, doesn’t feel any joy, anticipation, enthusiasm, and only experiences slackness, dumbness, irritation, sadness, feeling of wasted time because of the fact that he “has to want to do that and do that”. Joyful wishes are not taken into consideration in this case, they are being suppressed and forced out, swept aside. E.g. if I’m sure that it’s inappropriate to stay in bed in the mornings, I will “want” to stand up, despite anticipation to enjoy staying in bed longer. If I’m sure that I “have” to learn foreign language, I will “want” that despite the joyful wish to do something completely different. Those “wishes” have a well distinguishable feature which we call «self-forcing», «self-compulsion».

It’s exactly mechanical wishes that bring healthy laziness into effect. Mind you, yes, laziness is a perfectly healthy state, some sort of display of psychological immunity against self-compulsion by mechanical wishes. Laziness is a sign of us doing something destructive instead of something pleasant and developing. Despite the established dogmas, realization of mechanical wishes always (!) leads to reduced enjoyment of life. Momentary benefits from forcing yourself do something which you “should” do or refused to do something which you “shouldn’t” will eventually lead to a deepest crisis of personality, right up to the state we call depression or full loss of life richness, it’s sense, loss of ability to experience pleasure.

Saying “should” or “shouldn’t” I specifically mean moral categories, blind certainties, ungrounded beliefs, not the result of grounded suggestions. E.g. if I make a conclusion that it’s deadly dangerous to jump from the roof, I will not realize my joyful wish to acquire an experience of free fall by means of jumping from the roof, and it’s not a destructive moral ban, it will not reduce the richness of my life.

The difference in experiencing and consequences of joyful and mechanical wishes is immense and hard not to notice. Following mechanical wishes is so destructive that it decreases our ability to experience joyful wishes itself, so I don’t think it’s an exaggeration to call them “cancer or wishes”.

6. There are two types of sensations – pleasant and unpleasant. It seems there are neutral sensations, but it turns to be wrong at closer examination: they can be neutral only if the body is too poisoned by sickness or unpleasant states so it’s lost its natural sensitivity. Neutral sensations are sexual arousal, pleasant gustatory, tactile, auditory sensations and different states of pleasant physical activity, alertness, liveliness, freshness and many others. In reality, we know very little of enlightened perceptions as out lives are so poisoned that the spectrum of the pleasant sensations available for an average person is very narrow. The more you stop experiencing negative sensations and other negative states, the wider is your spectrum of pleasant sensations.

Managing the sensations is harder than managing the emotions, but it’s still possible at least due to a close connection (resonance) between pleasant sensations, joyful wishes and enlightened perceptions. The more you feel joyful wishes and enlightened perceptions, the less often you will feel sick, apathy, slackness etc, and the more you will experience pleasant sensations. The opposite is also true – the more you experience pleasant sensations, the more you experience joyful wishes and enlightened perceptions. It’s a law of nature.

7. The perceptions I call “certainties” are much harder to notice, but they play a huge part in our lives. E.g. you can be sure that a girl doesn’t have to be topless in public, that it’s immoral and inappropriate. At the same time, being a sensible person, you can agree with the arguments for the senselessness of that ban and even admit it’s discrimination of sexual character, but it will not change your certainty that being topless in public is inappropriate. Nonetheless, if a person doesn’t hold himself from reasoning honestly, he can develop unhealthy contradictions between the reasonable statements and certainties which were blindly adopted voluntarily or forcefully (so called cognitive dissonance). And it’s still possible to get rid of blind certainties and exchange them for the ones complying to common sense and experience. It is possible to do by the straight effort of sincerity and encouragement of rational thinking.

Every person has a very mysterious ability – to distinguish his own perceptions. Each of us can discern what he experiences right now. I can say that certainty is the distinguishing fixated in a specific way. Say, after seeing a naked girl one person will be sure he has seen something inappropriate. Another will say he has seen something beautiful and turning on. The statements of them both are the expressions of a specifically fixated distinguishing of visual perceptions and the following mental and emotional perceptions. Both will be sure they have seen exactly what they’d stated, inappropriate or beautiful, even though they’ve seen the same thing. It’s the way interpretation works, and it forms according to the certainties of every person.

Exploration of the world of one’s own certainties is an extremely enthralling process which resonates with the ability to experience enlightened perceptions and joyful wishes.

Certainty can be formed mechanically as a result of negative emotions, dullness, force which a person is aware or unaware of, but also it can be pleasant and formed as a result of observations, reflections and sincerity efforts. We are capable of distinguishing our perceptions and it’s an astonishing capability which entails tremendous consequences, as while distinguishing perceptions we gain a possibility to research and manage them, to make our lives more pleasant, interesting and rich. Note once again that the distinguishing of perceptions itself resonates with enlightened perceptions and states.

 

If everything I’ve written here is enough for you to start living a happier life, then don’t read any further as there will only be detailed descriptions which can be interesting purely academically or practically, if you face the difficulties with your perceptions engineering.

It’s astounding that one can be a very sick person full of hatred, jealousy, envy, wish to harm, be very intolerant, greedy, dull, stupid and depressed, suffer from diseases, without any idea what he want. Can be anything at all. And still there’s a way out if there’s a wish to experience pleasant and attractive states and a wish to make particular practical steps. If you found yourself in such a condition, be constructive about it. It doesn’t really matter why it had happened. What matters is if you start to change your habits step by step or you don’t.

The Western man is already a committed devotee, he is willing to mortgage his life in order to have an apartment, a car and “be like all other respectable people”, thus suppressing all stamina for the sake of imposed and artificial goals. To observe the decencies one can be stuck in an exhausting marriage for decades, for many years one can go to the office without having any respite in order to have a modern apartment and a car. This kind of self-compulsion is called “the ability to overcome difficulties”. Yes, he can overcome, but often this overcoming only comes to suppression of joyful wishes and self-destruction as a result. People like that do not overcome the obstacles on the way to experiencing enlightened perceptions, but it’s the other way around and they overcome the joyful wishes themselves. Such an “overcoming”, or rather self-compulsion, is absurd, imposed from the outside and being supported by dullness, insincerity and leads to suffering, a stale, tame and dull life which should be rather called “gradual dying” than “life”.

 

Sometimes there comes a special feeling of “recognition”, which reminds you of touching something that you have been willing to believe and say to yourself for a long time. Along with it you feel an intense fundamental truth, a strained verity and then you find enough power to be strong and confident, to make an effort and start changing your life abruptly or gradually. The pressure of your own blind certainties, unpleasant states, of your environment gets too high sometimes and you stop believing that you can live and feel differently, that life can be real, rich, happy.

 

I am writing this book for somebody to read and understand that there is a chance of such a life, and it is accomplishable. This is how this person lives, the author of this book, being an ordinary person in the past, with two arms and two legs and one head. This is also how some other people live, the ones who tried to apply his practice in their lives, and it means it is possible for everybody. This book is written to demonstrate a real and live example of such a way of living. I am not afraid to point a finger at myself and say: my life is different, this is my way of living and you can live this way, all doors are open for you, stop caring about your imposed beliefs that you are weak, wrong, silly, sinful and so on, that you “must” do this and that just because you must and that’s it, and that you “mustn’t” do something just because you meaninglessly “mustn’t”. Realize that you are capable of changing your life step by step and make it richer, more interesting, more intense.

 

My book is for those who agree with me: no matter what life you’ve chosen, it will be more pleasant with less negative emotions, negative sensations, mechanical wishes, dogmas and stupidities. It will be more pleasant with more joyful wishes and more enlightened perceptions, interesting thoughts, pleasant sensations. If you agree with that, this book is for you.

 

I make efforts to increase the amount of people who know about Selection of Attractive States and its theoretical and practical part of managing perceptions. People who experience enlightened perceptions, who can enjoy assisting others as experts, consulting the beginners. People like that appear slowly and call themselves “the refugees” paradoxically. This word symbolizes their wish to leave a destructive, deadened inner world to a life full of emotional experience and interesting activity.

People who practice SAS as professionals and found their interest in it call themselves “the snouts”, first of all because this word resonates with liking and tenderness towards the animals, secondly, because there’s some sort of naïve, but nice protest against unhealthy psychic deadliness and destructiveness as this word sounds a bit rough in a common context and contradicts to the word “face”.

I like stating my ideas and describing my feelings in fiction form as well. Therefore my six (for the moment) books, “Maya”.

I examine particular aspects of Selection in separate articles.

And of course, writing books is not the only activity for me. I build up businesses to be able to assist people I like, those who are carried away by something in their lives and who uses SAS to make steps towards more rich life and more frequent and intense enlightened perceptions, joyful wishes, away from negative emotions and dullness. I communicate with those who are carried away by Selection of their states as much as I am. I explore the world of enlightened perceptions. I create a new culture based on freedom from negative emotions, dogmas, every single thing which stops you from being happy.

And of course, I create myself. What brings the highest delight, after all? Sex? Food? Traveling? Money? Fame? Definitely not. At least because sex wil not bring you pleasure the moment you don’t want to have sex 🙂

Hence there is a simple understanding: the highest delight comes from realization of joyful wishes, including the wish to eat, to fuck, to travel, to explore, to build something external, to create your own self etc.

For me personally the biggest pleasure is usually creating my own self. Step by step, no rush. Create my body. Train my muscles, increase my endurance as much as I want, with no self-constraint. Create my own intellect. Practice sciences, learn languages, read books, as much as I want. Create my own emotional world – eliminate NEs and cultivate EPs as much as I want. Create comfortable environment as much as I want – make steps towards earning money, creating business, master new skills. And so on. With pleasure, with no rush.

The most destructive thing is the assurance of having nothing ahead besides difficulties, illnesses, dullness and decrepitude which can be even owned by 25 years old people, let alone those of 30, 40 or 60 years old.

Other pleasurable states are experienced much brighter against the background of unswerving creation of yourself. It’s absolutely necessary to start creating your own self and the life will start gaining intenseness and richness. And that’s exactly what I’ve been doing since I discovered Selection.

 

Fifteen years ago I took nickname “Bodhi” being sure it was very unique and feeling drawn to Buddhism :). Eventually it was the total disappointment and even despair from the psychology and Buddhism ineffectiveness, along with other “isms” that stimulated my own pursuit. I didn’t want colorful esoterism in my ears, I wanted something particular, some practical, easy and understandable way to make my life more rich and help others to do the same.

I stopped having any relation to Buddhism, esoterism since them, while developing Selection of Attractive States, but I still have the nickname, along with the shorter ones: “Bodh” and “Bo”. 🙂