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Glad Tidings of Great Joy

by martingbutler@outlook.com
  1. You are not responsible for current or past actions.
    1. Since you are a mental automaton exclusively driven by cause and effect it would be a folly to believe that either current or past actions could happen in any other way. 
    2. As a result there can be no praise, blame, guilt, remorse, regret, unless of course one falsely assumes that we have a free will.
  2. You cannot and should not try to change.
    1. Nothing changes its state unless acted upon by an external force. Simply conjuring up some idea of how one should be and then pursuing it will of necessity create negative, and possibly unseen, reactions. All attempts to change will result in a less satisfactory state.
    2. Most initiatives to change one’s behavior derive from acts of comparison. Since we do not know what might be the perfect state for any given product of nature we similarly do not know how a thing should be changed to make it more perfect.
  3. Pleasure that comes from understanding is always available.
    1. It doesn’t matter what our state is – utter misery or uncontrolled excitement; we can always derive pleasure from understanding how the nature of the state has come about. Quite simply; we are happy when survival prospects are enhanced, and unhappy when they are diminished.
  4. All your emotional states are legitimate and as natural as a summer squall.
    1. Never try to deny your real emotional state, and with practice all emotional states (even misery) can be enjoyed through the act of understanding them without judgment.
  5. The world is perfect and your concern for its state is egoism.
    1. Since we have no metric by which we could compare the world with some other imaginary perfect state, the world is perfect in its own right.
    2. Perfection does not equate with pleasurable. Pain and suffering are just as perfect as pleasure. Wars, famine, disease, terror, are all manifestations of perfection, since they result from the perfect playing out of inviolable laws.
  6. The world has no regard for your wishes and desires and neither should you.
    1. It is a great mistake to take oneself personally. Your desires and wishes may or may not be serviced by life; either way we should remember that the outcome is beyond our control and as such we should try not to take our wishes and desires seriously.
  7. You are absolutely free.
    1. Existence has no preassigned purpose, meaning, ambitions, goals, and as such it is completely free.
    2. The more you can resist the need to create ambitions, meaning, purpose, theories, the more you will stay free.

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