Re: Theos-World Jokes and Jokes
Mar 01, 2006 03:48 PM
by Bill Meredith
Why Not Laugh at Yourself?
By G. de Purucker
Many people talk about the heroism of self-conquest – something with
which we all agree; but I sometimes wonder if our ideas of heroic
battling with ourselves are not just a wee bit hysteriac, even foolish!
I do not mean the heroism part of it, but this lower self of us, poor
little thing! It plays havoc with us all the time, simply because we
identify ourselves with it and always try to fight it and make it as big
as we are. Is it heroic to fight a ghost of our own making?
How about wise old Lao-tse? If you want to conquer your lower self, make
it ashamed of itself, make it look ridiculous. Laugh at it; laugh at
yourself. So long as you pay attention to something, you dignify it and
put it on your own level; and then when you attempt to fight it you are
actually fighting another part of yourself which really could be
I have heard it said: kill out the lower self. Well, suppose we could do
that? We should then be most unfortunate beings; in fact, we should not
be here. This lower self when kept in order is a good little beastie. It
helps us. Our duty is simply to keep it in order. Now when a man has a
fractious dog or a horse or a cat, or some other pet, whatever it may
be, he does not kick it and beat it and hit it on the head in order to
make it good. He would be apt to make it rebellious, cowardly, and
vicious; he would be degrading it. Thus the lower self should be neither
degraded nor clothed with the false dignity of an adversary erroneously
raised to the position of the spiritual self. It should be kept in its
place and treated with kindness, consideration, and courtesy, but always
with a firm and governing hand. When the lower self begins to presume,
then put it in its proper place, but neither by brutality nor by
dignifying it nor by fighting it. Ridicule your lower self, and you will
soon see the lower self reassuming its proper position because full of
temporary shame and loss of dignity – loss of face, as the Chinese say.
I do believe Lao-tse of China was wise in his statement which runs to
the effect that one of the best ways of conquering a foe is to make him
Now that does not work as between man and man, because it is often very
harsh and cruel, the two being on the same level. You can hurt a human
being horribly and unjustly by placing him in a false position through
ridicule. No; but try it on yourself. The next time the lower self wants
to tell you what to do, laugh at it; don't dignify it; don't give it
position and power and strength by fighting it; on the other hand, do
not abuse it or make it weak and vicious and cowardly. Put it in its
proper place by ridicule and, indeed at times, a gentle contempt. Learn
the greater heroism. Laugh at the thing which bothers you!
The role a sense of humor plays in life, which means in human thought
and feeling and consequent conduct, and the role that humor plays in
spiritual things is all too often overlooked. We may define a sense of
humor as seeing the harmonious relations between apparently incongruous
things, the congruities as among incongruities, arousing a sense of the
funny in us.
The ability to see humor in what happens to ourselves is a spiritual
attribute. After all, humor is at the very root of the universe; and I
think that one of the greatest tragedies of individual existence has
been the lack of the ability to see the funny side of things when
troubles come. When disasters befall you, just try to see the funny
side, and you not only save yourself in all likelihood a lot of trouble,
but likewise you get a great kick out of it.
There is a great deal of sound science and philosophy in the old Hindu
idea that Brahman brought forth the universe in play, in fun. In other
words, the bringing forth of all things was not a tragedy; there was
beauty in it, there was harmony in it; there was humor in it; and those
who are in this universe can see the humor in it if they will.
Look at the religious wars and squabbles that never would have occurred
if people had had a sense of humor. If people nowadays would see the
funny side of things, then they would begin to live together, to love
together, to laugh together, and to take counsel together instead of
distrusting each other.
------reprinted from Theosophy Northwest View, Jan 00, V2, Issue 11
Bart Lidofsky wrote:
Cass Silva wrote:
The masters have always promoted a good sense of humour, I am sure
Perhaps you, Chuck, Bill, myself, and a few others should start an
on-line Theosophical humor magazine...
they would have no trouble laughing at themselves or laughing with
Morten. To sanctify them is outside the parameters of theosophy.
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