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Definitions - AGAPE

Excerpt from a portion of the DC Workshop in March of 1978*
(*Audience participation is in parentheses--notations in brackets have been added for clarification )

..........Let’s talk about how we see each other for a moment. How do you see other people?

(I’ll give you the answer I gave to an old friend of mine. I said "I wonder how I’ll like the people in East Aurora." Then he said to me, "How do you like the people here." I said "I love them." He said "You’ll love them there.")

Right, they’re pretty much alike, aren’t they. And it’s according to how YOU see them. My dear old mother told me something like that. She told me never to leave anyplace to get away from bad neighbors because they’d beat me there. So if I see you as being a very poor neighbor and when I get somewhere else, I’ll see likewise.

We hire a whole bunch of people through the year, and there is one thing I always listen for. If he tells me how terrible the last guy was that he worked for, and how he was mistreated, and how they didn’t pay him what he was worth and how they were very poor management people, I never hire him because I know I’ll be the next one on his list. He will find the same fault with me that he found with the last person. So how do I see?

I [normally] see people according to the not "I’s"—those things that we looked at this morning. [The not I’s] will be "blaming", or "I have to please", or the {not I’s will convince us that] people are taking my rights, or failing to do that when I want them too (which they know is the RIGHT thing to do).

I can choose to see people as what they really are. They are X with an "awareness function" and a "motor function", and that X is doing exactly what the [awareness function’s is valuing]. So, I could see that the person is doing what they feel is right or proper or justifiable with what light they have at that moment. Isn’t that all you can do? You can’t have more light than you have at this moment, and neither can the other person. That is what is called LOVE in it’s truest sense and the one that completes the [three other kinds of love].

If you see all people with this kind of love {which is called agape in certain books) which means that I see that whatever you’re doing, ever have done, ever will do--that at the moment of doing you feel it to be right, or proper, or justifiable to you. Could I ever get angry with you? Could I ever get disappointed in you? Could I ever be upset about you in any way? That is when a person is beginning to chose to see clearly. You could say that is seeing "What Is". There is no ideal involved there. The ideal comes when I think you ought to know better than what you do. I can get all upset about that.

If I see WHAT IS, then I can also see that whatever I have done, that what I’m doing now, or ever will do that at the moment of doing it seems right, or proper, or justifiable. I wouldn’t carry around a load of guilt. I wouldn’t carry around a load of regret. I’d be thankful I found a little extra light; and after a while, I could see a little differently or [I would see] a little more clear or some other way. This would be a completed person.

Now we’re beginning to be a conscious person ‘cause we are seeing "what is" without any distortion of the not I’s saying, "You knew better and went on and did wrong anyway." You would see "what is" rather plainly. You would see that what they did they felt was either right, or proper, or justifiable with what light they had that moment. Now you could be a friend of the person, you could work with the person—may be able to share a little light if you had some—or at least inquire about it. You might loan them a flashlight. But you could not criticize the person.

Now wonder what kind of an inner state you would have—an inner feeling—if you could not find all this fault with people because they went on and did wrong anyway. You’d be very calm. Therefore, you could see clearly, and you could deal with the person on any level, and you would have a state of peace. You’d be peaceful within because you would not feel you were a victim and being attacked by somebody who knew better. You wouldn’t feel that you had really goofed up. You’d be intent upon getting light, not criticism of you or another. And things would begin to be a little different.

I’ve heard people say that no matter how they experience "it", that’s what is. Now if we could possibly see that we don’t see "what is" very clearly as the usual thing. As long as we’re conditioned, we see what "appears to be" and not "what is."

I see by appearances that people know what’s right and proper and go ahead and do wrong anyway. That’s what we tend to see with what light we have. So we could recognize maybe—just maybe--I don’t see "what is" about everybody. Now then I would be putting myself in a position where I could begin to look at them a little different.

Possibly we could start out by acting that all the people we associate with are doing what they feel is

right, proper, or justifiable with what light they have. We could act that way. We might not clearly be able to see it yet; but I could at least begin to act that way. Could you?

Then possibly that [feeling] would grow. If I’m acting that way, I’ll begin to feel that way. I have, in effect, made up my mind to see it that way. I’ve made up my mind how I’m going to see you.

(We [could] start that [acting] in terms of ourselves rather than others.)

I believe that would be a good place to start—on you. Cause I imagine "you" is the person you criticize the most. Most of us pick on ourselves. So it would be [that first we begin} to start acting. Therefore, we bring about the feeling in a little bit that you are doing what you feel to be right and proper and justifiable with what light you have.

(Boy that could be a big step!)

At the moment you always feel that it’s right or proper or justified; but you see a few minutes later these little bits of conditioning that we say is programming, jumps up and says you did wrong. You got two sets of them. One side [B side] says "please them", "quote your authority", and "be different". So if you fail to do that, that side jumps up and screams at you.

If you do the other one [A side] that says "stick up for rights", then the other side [B side] jumps up and says "You’re just being a reprobate."

[Each side] always waits until after you’ve done it [before it wakes up, tells you the opposite and begins the conflict within]. What you did seemed right, proper and justifiable AT THE MOMENT. Then it’s so easy to forget a moment later that [what you did] seemed right and proper, and/or justified and was all the light I had at the previous moment.

Now if you act that way, very shortly you will actualize the feeling of love, agape, understanding, and oneness with other people. And you’re beginning to see other people as X sees you and me, ok? X sees you and me as doing whatever we say the "what" about, and X does the "how", because it loves us and wants us to have whatever we want.

Without having agape or love, we are in a constant state of turmoil because we’re never seeing others as they are, and we’re never seeing ourselves as we are. We’re not seeing "what is". We’re comparing it to "what ought to be". Is that vaguely familiar? Now there’s no way you can ever please those not I’s. No matter what you do the other side says you didn’t do it right.

Could you , starting today, begin to act upon the fundamental that whatever, you did an hour ago with what light you had, you were doing what felt right, proper or justifiable. You might even see those in your household that way in a little bit.

Now as you go to that state, you have made a complete transformation.............