The Horse and Buggy Story:

(Excepts from a talk by Dr. Bob Gibson in Salt Lake City October 1970)

[from Marsha   All my life I’ve heard people say I’m waiting for God to tell me the right thing to do and sometimes they say, “it was the will of God” when things don’t go to suit them.   I believed these words since it was so common a saying, but where did that leave me?   Where does it leave you? The following excerpt from Donna Lancaster’s library gave me another way of seeing.   It is a lovely idea to work with and observe.]

The discussion this morning will be relationships. When everything is in its proper relationship it works real conveniently. Let’s take a buggy, a horse and you have a driver sitting on the seat. So you have the vehicle. You have the motive power. You have the driver. If you put them in the proper relationship you have transportation.   You have a function.

Now you have heard of putting the cart before the horse. If you tie the horse behind the cart, the driver gets on the seat and hollers “Gitty-up”, and nothing much happens. He hasn’t got it in the proper relationship. If he puts the buggy behind the horse and the driver is sound asleep, the horse usually doesn’t go very far in any particular direction. If the driver gets drunk and falls off the buggy, not much goes on. Now if the driver got up on the seat and said, “I’m going to sit here and wait to see the will of the motive power here and then we will go”, the horse could care less which way he goes. His nature is to provide power. So who is responsible for the direction the motive power takes? The driver.

We can use this parable to see our various aspects – when all of this works as a unit, everything works smoothly. We have transportation. The driver is going where he wants to. The horse is furnishing the motive power and the vehicle gives the transportation to the desired destination.

However, does the driver take on the responsibility or does he sit down and whine and want to be told what to do and where to drive the horse. He waits for the horse to tell him where he wants to go and what to do?

The horse really could care less. His nature is Power. The nature of X is to express energy. Where would X express it without an awareness, the driver here, to decide what to do with it? Let’s put the driver to sleep with an anesthetic, maybe ether. What does the motive power do then? Nothing. Its nature is the expression of energy. What would you say then is the “will of the horse”? To please the driver? Now the driver is trying to get the horse to tell him what to do. Stays up all night trying to get the horse to tell him what to do. And what happens? Nothing. And the horse is sitting there with all the power of the universe ready to go.

And what are we doing? We don’t want to be responsible for directing the pony down the road. So we sit and say we want to find out the will of the Power. The Power loves the driver very dearly. The horse loves the driver very much or he would have already left the driver and the buggy. But he has only one thing, “You tell me what you want”. It’s up to you. And if you don’t do it, it won’t get done.

Now the will of the horse is for you to make up your cotton-picking mind, then we’ll do it. Now usually the driver doesn’t know what he wants. He pleads with the horse to tell him what to do. The horse will do anything the driver directs him to do. It will be happy to work with you as long as you drive. But when you don’t drive, everything comes to a stand-still or never starts. We have a responsibility and we avoid this responsibility, because if something happens and we’re criticized. we can blame the horse and say the horse did it. It was the will of the horse.

All our limitations have been chosen because we don’t want to be responsible for the outcome. Who is the director of the motive power? We are. Now with all this conditioning in the awareness we have, how many drivers are sitting on the driver’s seat?   (see the picture of man on the website under illustrations to see who the driver’s are.) But when the driver (awareness) tells all these Not-I’s to shut up and he’s driving the horse, everything goes well. It is a matter of making up the mind and giving the command to the motive power. We are through with conditioning, right there. We are the driver of this most wonderful steed who loves us dearly. But we like to use the phrase “it’s the will of whatever” to not be responsible. It there any excuse not to be the driver?

Do you see where you fit in the Picture of Man? Do you see what your position is? We not just going along for the ride, even though that’s what we try to do. There is only one thing that keeps us in eternal bondage. We don’t want to be responsible. “Now you just tell me what to do, and I’ll do it beautifully”, we say. But we have all the Power of the universe at our direction. The driver is always with the horse. That is the most perfect union in relationship there is. That is when the motive power and the direction are ONE. That is real marriage.

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Stepping out of society

[Very often we get caught up in the suggestion of “What will people think”. When this occurs, it creates “conflict and competition” not only within self; but also with others.   It is interesting to discover how often this occurs just by being aware and observing. Below are some thoughts about the trap.]

What will people think is our biggest competition item, isn’t it? I’m afraid you will think I’m kinda dopey, so I will have to begin to compete so that you will think more of me than you do Ever watch that little game?

So I will compete for “what will people think”; and I will try to get you to think more approval of me than you do of him or her, huh? And here we go. Is this society? Do you wanna live in it?   There’s nothing but war and death that’s in it – you can observe it in conversations, actions, and thoughts which is in the realm of relationships – it determines whether the relationship is in harmony or conflict.    Often this is just ideals, opinions and conclusions we have that don’t agree with others.   It all starts off with competition. The division in man brings about division between man and man.

There’s also “What do I think of me”. This can create an internal war within myself called conflict which sooner or later can then manifest itself it in conflict with others. For instance, if I am working at “self improving” me, then eventually I want to “self improve” you – I think I know what you need or what you ought to be – in other words, be more like me..

Competition and worrying about what people think is an internal thing first; however once one is no longer competitive within self – he sees the whole idea of competition as a fallacy, and steps out of the illusion. He will not compete with anyone; and consequently, he won’t be invited to join in anybody’s conflict.

But you see we seldom step out of society. We’re always gonna fight it and make the other side work better. In other words if I’m a good A I’m gonna make the B’s get in line to be A’s. And if I’m a good B I’m gonna try and make the A’s get in line to be good B’s, so it’s still competition isn’t it?   So we see competition everywhere. (see illustration of the Picture of Man on the webpage of A and B sides.)

Now can you just step out of it? To step out of it is to become noncompetitive not only within oneself but also with others – to be at peace. How much effort does it take – we just observe the decision or the reaction to do it and see the fallacy of this. Can you see that the division starts within the person? The conflict can then escalate to the point of violence.

Now if I get out and organize a group to demonstrate against the establishment, have I stepped out of society? No, I’m still right in there competing and still expressing my division within myself. And then I can say I’m opposed to this, but somebody else says we’re opposed to what you’re doing and the fight’s on.

But now let’s say that I’m just not interested in either side of that little noise; and I just will not compete – I’m gonna do what I’m interested in. I won’t be invited to be in anybody’s conflict.   Can you kinda see how that could be.   I think you can if you’ll think just a minute.

But, you see, we like a certain amount of this competition because we always think we’re gonna win. I’m gonna win out over the others. I wanna make it all my way; and we’re gonna win in this competition; and so we like it because it gives us a sense of power.

That’s the story of Animal Farm. Did you ever read that little book?   So then I’m just saying well the pigs will run it better than Farmer Jones – is that right? I’m the pigs of course, huh? And so we will organize and do. Now did that end any competition?   It didn’t end a bit. You’ll get carried away with vanity and pride in your self discipline. Now you will try to force it on me and so then I’m liable to buck it, and again we got a fight.

How about just steppin’ out of society?

But you see we compete all over the place. How about just letting that all come to an end – end all competition and say I’m gonna do what I love to do. I’m gonna do what I like to do and I don’t care how much more you have or how much less you have, I have no concern with that.

Now to set up a culture, it starts with one individual who is noncompetitive. Then two people might see each other; and they might say, “All right, I’m non competing and you’re non competing.” That way we could kinda operate in the same area a little bit. Would the thing be then that we would start cooperating or would we have the very minimum of cooperation. Which would it be? Would we cooperate or would we set up as our purpose to cooperate a lot or to be the very minimum of cooperation – which would it be?

A very minimum because if we’re gonna cooperate then I’m gonna have to have competition as to which one is doing enough; and then I got to get somebody else as judge to watch between you and me then, don’t we? So, if needed, we’ll cooperate to dig the ditch out there; and then you can go back and do your thing and I’ll go do mine – so it’d be the minimum of cooperation. Could there be peace in such people then? Somebody else might come along and see the value of doing likewise.

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Watch Life

[from Marsha – Someday when you are able to quiet all your “wants”, iIt might be fun to just look around and see what’s going on. Here are some thoughts from a workshop called Going Forward which is on the website.]

Now life is goin’ on on this planet. It’s been goin’ on for who knows how long. You didn’t start it. You didn’t arrange for it. You didn’t know how to run it for even 10 minutes; and it’s still goin’ on. The marvel of a human being or a calf or a cow or a pig or a dog — the marvel of that existing here is a pure material thing as far as anybody can analyze. That it gets up and it walks, it talks, it eats, it sleeps, it reproduces and all these things is a marvel beyond our comprehension. So I think things are in pretty good hands; but we don’t think so. We believe we know what ought to be.

Now people come to me and tell me they want to follow the spiritual path. Well I agree with all of that, but I’m not gonna use all those fancy words because then you get serious all of a sudden and make things important.   Spirit moves this piece of meat and bone and does things that are different and unusual and can go from one side of the country to another. It can build houses. It can tear down houses. It can cook a dinner. It can throw the garbage away. It can do all sorts of things — jillions and jillions of things; and I have no way of knowing anything about what’s going on, so if I recognize that that reality is here. It can throw a ball up in the air and catch it — that was Spirit did the work. The meat can’t do it because if Spirit is gone from this meat and bone — anybody want to tell me it can pitch a crayon up in the air and catch it? Or we say very reverently, here lies the remains….. (laughter) …as though the remains was the real important part. All we gotta do is clean it up — take the garbage out — the real thing has already departed.

Now what that “real” is is invisible as far as lookin’ at it; but I can sure see it everwheres. I look in those eyeballs there — there’s somethin’ lookin’ back at me.   And I look at a piece of meat that there is no life, Spirit, there and there’s nothin’ lookin’ back, right?

So we’re dealin’ with Spirit — Spirit talks to Spirit — Spirits doin the talkin’ here — Spirit’s doin’ the listening and everything that’s goin’ on and we got a bunch of weird ideas that we were handed from infancy and didn’t ever recognize we grew up. We don’t come up with sayin’ look, life is runnin’ this show; and I’m gettin’ to experience it — this awareness bit which is a function of life. You know the body is a motor function of life; and the awareness is the awareness function of life — what we call mine is the awareness function of life is not a ‘thing’ by itself. I think it all goes out when you don’t have the body anymore, but Spirit goes on. Spirit is neither born nor dies, but Spirit is a partner; and I get to watch it and live with it and work with it and be experiencing it constantly and seeing it in every conceivable place around here. And so the Spiritual path is recognizing that Spirit’s doin’ all the work; and Spirit’s runnin’ the thing; and that I as the awareness function is getting to go along for a free ride and experience it as long as I don’t interfere.

Now what is there for me to interfere about — only that I think I know what ought to be. Now I don’t even know how to build one hair — one tiny little cell. I don’t know that while I’ve been standin’ here talkin’ there are several billion cells died and several billion more has been created in this body — billions of ’em. Now all that happened. I am totally unconscious of it, but life’s runnin’ it; and it certainly knows what it’s doin’ and Life is Spirit and we’d kinda like to go along with it if we wanna call it the Spiritual way.

Let’s see how conscious we can be of what it is that’s workin’. And we can get away from all this “not I”junk which tells us it knows what ought to be — really that’s all not I’s ever say. I oughta have my way right now. I oughta have all my rights taken care of. I oughta have you out of the way ’cause you made me stump my toe.   I ought to be better than what I am.   I ought to please everbody; but man she’s hard to please. And I quote some authority which is another piece of not i comin’ from somebody else that I ought to – well, that’s all it is is second-handed not i. That’s what an authority is — just second-handed ought to be’s. I have quit trustin’ my own and listen to yours for a while.

And so today could be a discovery day to just watch Life and all it’s doing around and through us.

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More Info About Rights

From Marsha:  Here’s a little excerpt from a workshop of Dr. Bob’s that gives a little different way of looking at situations where I think I have rights.

Now the next one up here says, you gotta stick up for your rights.  Now in the U.S. we’re very obsessed with our rights.  I think everbody knows that, don’t you?  You got all sorts of things you’ve been told are your rights.  There’s a thing in the constitution called the Bill of Rights.  If you read them, they’re not rights at all.  Anybody can take ’em away from you.  And so if anybody can take it away from you it’s not a right.  We don’t have a right to even be alive ‘cause any joker with a club or a rock or knife can take it away from you right quick.  So a right’s something that can’t be taken away from you.

I sometimes turn on the television.  The other night I had very little to do sittin’ by myself.  So I turned the television on; and tune into these programs where they discuss controversial subjects.  I took a yellow tablet, a pencil and my little remote to change stations.  So I watched one program for a little while, then went over to another and another — for one hour I listened to these people propound on all the problems of the world; and I made a mark everytime they mentioned somebody’s rights.  In one hour I had 68 marks — 68 times they’d been propounded about somebody’s rights.

Now there’s an interesting thing about the idea of rights.   If you have rights, I don’t.  If I have rights, you don’t.   So let’s say we had a house somewhere and I determined I had a right to have my dinner on the table prepared by you at 6:00 every evening.  I think I have that right ‘cause after all I’m payin’ the rent here.   And you have the right, according to you, to go out and eat in a nice restaurant because you’ve taken care of all the household things.

And so if I have my rights, you don’t have any, is that right?  And if you have yours, I don’t have mine.  Now let’s go through that in any direction you want to with the idea of rights — If I have rights, you dont have them; and if you have rights, I don’t have them.  So we’re gonna start violence.

So if you eliminated all idea of rights, and you don’t have any — I don’t have any — nobody else has any rights, we’d probably begin to see that perhaps we all have gobs of privileges.  You know violence just may come to an end very quickly.

So if we begin to see our conjured up so-called rights as privileges instead,  I might want to see that I am thankful for them; and if nothing else, at least show my appreciation in some way or other..

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“Why” questions properly put.

The fallacy of “why” questions has been discussed frequently throughout the website. It is said that you can only answer a “why” question with another “why”, such as: Why does it get dark at night? Why does the sun go down? Why does the earth rotate? Any “why” question therefore creates an infinite loop in the brain which goes on and on and on.

The mental picture given was a “little pointer” that goes from brain cell to brain cell looking for the answer and the brain cell says, “I don’t know”, so it goes to the next brain cell and when it has completed the whole brain, it starts over again.

Recently I ran across a little more explanation of the “why”, but also what one can do to circumvent the infinite loop.

See below as Dr. Bob answers a “why” question.

(Bob, why do I find it necessary to continually ask why questions.)

You’re looking for an answer to come from the past because you assume there is a hidden “cause” back down there in the past that’s gonna bite you. All “why’s” ask for blame.   All blame must have been before this moment.   The question is unanswerable in its present form.

Asking a question in a proper way brings a question/answer immediately.  The “why” question is out of time.

When we say “what” such as “What is going on” or “What am I doing” – one asks for information; and when you use those questions, you will notice that there is information in present time. Either of these questions could be answered.

It sounds like a very simple little thing. It sounds like you’re nitpickin’, but the human mind is a very delicate instrument; and a hair in it can throw it off like a hair in a fine watch can. So this can be a very worthwhile experiment to keep in mind when you’re observing self.

I decided to try the experiment of using the question of “What’s going on?” and/or “What am I doing?” on a recurrent why question in the mind; and lo and behold, I did get a different answer.

Last year I lost a once a month gig that I had been doing for years.   I could get no explanation from email or phone call as to “why” I was cancelled.   I got lots of guesses from within, but no facts. The “why” came up with – there wasn’t enough funds, the woman who hired me quit, I played a song or songs that offended a resident – like the wrong religion, too silly or simple, etcetra, etcetera.

If the “why/blame” was her, I was angry.

If the “why/blame” was me, I felt guilty and didn’t know what to feel guilty for; and started questioning any material I sang.

If I didn’t know what to blame I was fearful. I began to think that I would lose all the other little monthy gigs.

The point is that the “why” question would continually come to mind any time there was any kind of association come up in the mind.

So when the record began replaying yesterday, I rephrased the question to “What am I doing?” The answer came up immediately in present time with

“I am tormenting myself over something I cannot get an answer to or change in any way.”

I wonder how many other why questions are in there that I’m not aware of. Now the quest is to remember, remember, remember!

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Mushkil Gusha

There has always been turmoil in the world.  However, of late we observe an escalation of destruction, anger, fear, hatred and blaming – not just in the US, but across the globe.

Could a group of like-minded people concentrating on one thing for 20 minutes, once a week, affect this?  Could this exercise contribute peace to each of us, to the world and make even a small difference?  We invite you to join in and see.

For 20 weeks, every Thursday from July 7th through Nov. 17th, we’ll be sending you an email to commemorate the evening of Mushkil Gusha.  And every Thursday at 8pm in each of our own time zones, we hope that you’ll join us in reading out loud or telling the story of Mushkil Gusha. Our aim is that someone will be reading/telling the story about “The Remover of All Difficulties” in every time zone of the world.  If everyone reads at 8pm their time, it will be a moving wave of Light, taking 26 hours to cross the globe, from Eastern New Zealand to Western Alaska.

We encourage you to reach out to friends or family to join us. If they want to be added to our list (private, blind, and never shared) and receive weekly reminder emails for this project, they can contact us at

This is an ancient story, read for hundreds of years on Thursday evenings.  It is a reminder and an encouragement to allow wondrous change.  “If you do this, the people who are in real need will always find their way.”  We hope you will join us!

*** Note:  Find the story:

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