Same with innocence... there is innocence from, I bet this is what my readers have in mind, then there is innocence for...
And then there is INNOCENCE... a state of being. Having been untouched by the "stuff" that makes you dirty, discolored, jaded, altered, and prejudiced.
I live in that state of innocence 30% of my awake time. The rest of the time: I am judging, reacting, or know already... just like you.
One of my all time favorite movies is The Guru. When I am low, when I am depressed, losing faith in humanity, in my ability to make a difference, I make a point of watching it. It's about THAT innocence: it washes me clean of all that could make be dirty if remained on me.
I have been saving it for myself... not trusting that you can get it: the main characters are porn actors... act and screw for a living.
You would think that screwing for a living makes you jaded, or dirty, or take away your innocence, but it is not necessarily so.
In fact, it isn't the activity, it isn't what happens in the visible that destroys your innocence: it is what happens on the inside.
Everything that comes from society, all the meanings, all the judgments, all the rules, all the "Tree of Knowledge" stuff, makes you not innocent, makes you "dirty" inside.
Just observe your reaction to the fact that in the movie "The Guru" the main characters are porn actors... If you did have a reaction, it is a clear sign that you have lost your innocence.
Things are no longer "It is what it is", they are meaningful. They are positive or negative. Good or bad. Right or wrong. Proper or improper. Nice or not. Innocence is gone with any of these meanings.
If you look, your life has hundreds of incidents, that you now have an opinion about.
You may think things positive and negative, and try to avoid what you call negative, negative words, negative people, negative anything, and pile up the positive... You are as corrupted as it comes. Maybe already too far gone to be "saved" and returned to innocence.
In life you are eating the menu, and can't even taste the food...
Things are covered up by meanings, and you can't see them... only the meanings.
I am not religious, and especially not a Christian, but the following words resonate with me, because I have experienced the truth myself:
He said, "...unless you turn from your sins and become like little children, you will never get into the Kingdom of Heaven."
I don't know what the church teaches this means, and honestly I don't much care. I'll tell you what it actually means:
- 1. The only sin, the original sin, is accepting another's interpretation, another's meaning of what is good and what is evil. The original sin... that the bible identifies as "eating from the tree of knowledge.". the moment you don't look at things as they are, but as they are said they are... you lost your innocence, and you are corrupted.
- 2. The Kingdom of Heaven is Heaven on Earth... being happy, fulfilled, joyful while you are alive...
So how do we do it?
I had a lot of stuff happen to me, and I was a miserable excuse for a human for many many decades.
When I started to volunteer at the Landmark (Werner Erhard and Associates) offices back in 1986, I was told by staff members that I took up space, and didn't provide any.
In the language of my Starting Point Measurements, I had a very high about-me score, 70%.
I spent another 25 years doing all the work diligently in Landmark... and yet, I wasn't getting much happier.
The turning point for me
The turning point for me was 15 years ago in the Partnership Explorations Course, where you needed to do "tons" of collages. And one of those collages showed me the before meaning, the placing meaning, and the after meaning, as I was making the collage during class... because who has time to do "tons" of collages, right? So I had to make up all the homework while others could give all their attention to the course leader...
But because my attention was divided, maybe, much like when I play Freecell, I could see how the process corrupted my view of life.
I was doing a collage with the theme: I am locked out... locked out of the finer things in life.
The first thing I did is glued pictures of people partying, having a grand time on some poolside. And then I cut thin black strips from a magazine page, and carefully created the separation... me on this side, the party on the other side.
It was obvious: I wasn't locked out. I locked myself out, with my meaning.
When I looked over my "tons" of collages, I saw the same thing: my meaning put on top of reality, on what was actually happening.
Had there been a Playground course in 1986, I would have become innocent during its 12 months, guaranteed. Muscle test confirms in.
But there was no Playground then, and there is no Playground in Landmark's curriculum. Not a money maker... happy people don't throw their money away... happy people are happy to be happy, build themselves, build a business, build a family that is also happy.
I have priced MY Playground as if it were a 10-day course... Maybe two webinars, no other goodies.
But I have done these webinars before, and the results weren't there... so I have wizened up, and added two additional elements that when used, make the course 10 times more potent, and start producing innocence faster.
The pull of society to maintain its value, its good and evil, its meaning, is tremendous. Especially around holidays. Thanksgiving and Christmas are the worst... because all the pretense love, and all the pretense gratitude. Ugh.
I expect to have double workload after this holiday to return people to their intention: happiness, heaven on earth, becoming little children to enter the Kingdom of Heaven.
I am making the Playground a standard offering from now on.
Women and men are separated. Both current groups have five members... and I'd love to add one ne person to each... one of the new features is pairing students up so they can practice dropping the meaning and looking at what is the reality.
The reality is what little children see... innocently. There is never any suffering, never anything wrong in reality. All that suffering, all the wrong is added by you or other people. It doesn't belong to the fact, doesn't belong to reality.
Don't be mistaken: it takes some sharp eyes, and some (a lot of) practice to see what is real and what is added. That is why the course is one year long.
One of my students, Amy, said it best: consider that by doing the Playground (if you are accepted)