What to do about the emotions?


To live in peace with the emotions.

The emotional state of a grownup, is like a raw, unprocessed, unshaped – material.

One analogy is a puppy, if he is not being taught what is allowed and what is forbidden – he will do what is not allowed.

Another example is a bush, if it is not being pruned (and given a shape) it is extended to all directions, and if pruned- it gets stronger.

The same form an emotional point of view; if the emotions are allowed to react in any way and at any time – they weaken and loose their strength and vitality.

“In the terminology of certain Eastern teachings (and in the ‘fourth way’) man has got several ‘bodies’; the first body is the ‘carriage’ (body), the second body is the ‘horse’ (feelings, desires, emotions), the third the ‘driver’ (mind), and the fourth the ‘master’ (I, consciousness, will). 

The horses of the emotions are moving to all directions, (except the main road), they are not connected to the driver (mind), the driver is looking כםר stimulations, and in their absence – he is just bored… there is no connection between the mind and the emotions. Almost anything unexpected is causing the horses to leap, to jump and gallop.

The power of their reaction is not according to what comes to them from reality, but according to their habitual wild response.

So, for example, if in recent times – self-pity caused an extreme reaction from them, the same would be in the present self-pity.

The emotions, like horses, need to be tamed, become mature, otherwise they cannot be controlled. Another analogy for emotional maturing is the is educating children; they need to learn about Delayed gratification; the more the emotions go wild because they feel that they don’t get what they want –the more they should wait a while, so it will learn not to expect to get immediately what they want, otherwise, later – they would become impossible to control.

Both, children and the emotions operate on us a kind of emotional blackmail; if you do not give the emotions the freedom to go wild than they make you feel bad.

One needs to be determined and assertive about them. The question is: is our life is designed by the wildness of our emotional outbursts? Or we design them according to a goal.

Many adults pay a heavy price for the lack of emotional taming a person who is holding the reins of his emotions, strongly, tight and short – is usually mature and developed emotionally. He can seat in front of the T.V. and if he sees something which squeezes his emotions, and then he either pass to another station, or leave. He is holding them short. Giving them full freedom increases their demand and weakens their inner strength.

The emotions should serve us, the moment we allow them to expand all over – we are serving them (and them serving us).

In the fable of Gurdjieff about the carriage – the horses are the emotions, if they are not tamed, they do what they like; is male horses of the carriage see a female horse on the side of the road – the rider is dragged after his horses. The untamed emotions are in a power struggle with us. 

And here at this point I wish emphasis that what is being talked about here, we are not talking of repression and depression of them, but of the management of them. In depression of the emotions we operate an unproportioned force upon them, here there is the satisfaction that comes from conquering them, and what is important in taming is to draw definite boundaries (between what is allowed and what is not).

So, therefore we have here 3 emotional states, and for that an analogy; a bush – the Gardner can do one of three thing: 

A.to let it grow wild – this is the state of untamed emotions. 

B. this is ‘the blessed middle way’; to prune it and give it support when young.

C. repressing the emotions is to grow a Bonsai bush; the roots are being prunes, and strings are being wrapped around it. 

In repression (and depression) – you don’t allow a minimal freedom to be themselves, in pruning of the branches you don’t hurt the, and the pruning (of the branches) actually strengthen the bush.

A substantial part of human culture is based on the concept that the emotions are a wild growth, the more a person is of high status – the more he is expected not to be motivated by his emotions, and that his emotional expression – must be as minimal as possible.

No one deals with emotions in our culture, our society, it could be said it is a kind of animal living in us that with keep in the inner chambers, and are acting as though they don’t have this animal. And this animal gets bigger and bigger – the more she is being ignored, threatens to swallow the inner self, so that there is hardly any self, only untamed emotions.

So, emotional maturity is the sane middle path. The emotional infantile is split into two problematic ends: one end is to let the emotions go wild, the other hand is to depress and repress the emotions and emotional expression (until the dying of, of the emotional life). The second option is a dictatorship, under which the emotionless person can cause all kind of repression on other human beings. In fact, despite their oppositions the two end cooperates and are closer to each other rather than each one of them – to the other. The distance between repression and an uncontrolled emotional outburst – is smaller than we tend to think. And too much repression leads in the end to the uncontrolled outburst, and this happens when the repression cannot go any further.

This outbursts and the personal involvement could be perceived by the person as life and full living itself. Instead of letting life forces to pass through – comes the emotional ‘celebration’ – as a substitute.

All are behaving as though they are almost without emotions, when a person explains his deeds and behavior – he comes across as though he is operating fully from a rational motive, but in most cases the emotions are what is behind this behavior, they might let the emotional explosion happen and then behave as though it did not happen (or, again, rationalizing it).

Most people don’t really have a life of their own, for the emotional animal robed most of their life.

When analyzing the emotional content of most movies – we see what occupies a large portion of human beings, and this are emotions of: fear, violence, romanticism, suspense and fantasies – it shows what emotions lives in the spectators.

One claim that could be said about what has been written here about the emotions is: what do we have emotions for if to enjoy life and have a good time with them?  

Well, the emotions and the blood (cravings, desires and impulses) are fuel that is there for the maintenance of all the human system, they are not there for us, we are not supposed to self-use them. They should be locked inside. And what is it like? Like the attitude towards money; as we treat money we should do with our emotions; not to waste them (in order to get pleasure out of them), but we should keep them in a protected state, so they would be of use in important things sometimes in the future.

The emotions are not for our daily life, we should be moved by the forces of life itself (and not by the emotions, because they belong to the maintenance system and not to the part in us which is there for potential development and growth).

If we stop to be moved by our emotions and begin to be moved by the life forces – than when we do or act it would be done without an effort, lightly. Generally emotions are in effort, and pressure, but in order to live (and not just to exist) it should be done effortless. When we use emotion for our daily life – we rob something which wasn’t meant for us but for our maintenance system.

No doubt, we should aspire for pleasant emotions, but the question is: does a person gives this aspiration to be one of his chief motives?

But, In the process of self, or spiritual, development – a separation must happen between lower and higher emotions, so the lower would ne excreted down and out of the body, and finer emotions would rise up to build the higher emotional body (which would become the emotional center itself, one day).

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