‘The better is the enemy of the good’
(14th Century Italian proverb)


“Look! (He throws his hands up in exasperation) Look!… I’m not saying that you’re going to have a problem… necessarily … just because it appears to me that you will keep insisting upon stapling yourself to every trendy, fashionable … ‘ spiritual fad’ … that happens to come your way …

Particularly as I will be the first to admit that one or two of these ideas may actually turn out to be of some real ‘temporal use-value’ for you … If only to show you that you’re still going in the wrong direction here! (He pauses again, looking down at his palms, before gesturing).

But if one of these ideas somehow manages to become permanent.. (He Pauses) … Such that you now believe you’ve finally ‘discovered’ a ‘rock’ of your very own that you can safely stand upon, as it were … A rock that constitutes some form or other of ‘imperishable’, or (He stops gesturing, but his head is still bend downwards slightly) – let’s use one or two of those other words that you seem to be really impressed with – such as  ‘eternal’, ‘immortal’, absolute’ (He is smiling now)…. And that now constitutes … then … some form or other of  ‘foundation’ for you? …

Well …  you can’t really blame someone else; or start complaining that you were ‘mislead’, when this edifice of yours suddenly begins to disintegrate … to disappear …(He looks up quickly and suddenly stops smiling)… Can you now? “

Fragment from ‘Field-notes for Armageddon’ by Bob Hardy


“No! … I’m in charge!!”

The acceptance of some form of ‘authority’; ‘authoritative figure’; or ‘ideology’; or the imposition of some form of ‘authority’; ‘authoritative figure’; or ‘ideology’…. What’s all that about?

Well … ‘Authority’ can be ‘Imposed’ on you; or you can be ‘Seduced’ by it; or you can ‘Surrender’ to it; or you can ‘Sacrifice’ yourself to it; or you can ‘Decide’ to subject yourself to it, etc. etc.

Contemplating the endless variety of ways in which ‘Authority’ functions – in both my subjective experience of ‘my’ ideas, concepts, emotional states, etc; together with the way any external authority ‘out there’ seeks to determine how I interact with the objective world, has provided me with a great deal of information about any number of (for me at least) crucial questions. Notably “What do I mean by my choice; or when I say that I just exercised my ‘free will’?”

This post consists, in the main, of my take on both the personification, and also the experiential nature of, ‘Authority’… … Also included here is material that I believe to be connected with this concept of ‘Authority’ – such as the subject of ‘inertia’ … plus various other personally relevant snippets. And although perhaps, initially, the connections that I make here might not seem that obvious or particularly useful .. I would say that these sections are by far the most interesting here … 🙂

NOTE: Re my frequent use of single parenthesis (‘…’) or of upper-case lettering for the first letter of a word (which is more often than not a noun) in this blog. This is a device I often use when representing an ‘active word’ of mine… It more often than not indicates that the particular word in question is a non-substantive… That is, what it signifies is functionally real, but is not necessarily a ‘thing’ per se… It is by no means an exact way of doing so, but I have found that it works well enough for me…


Examining the relationship of your-self to ‘Authority’, in any of the ways in which it presents itself to you, is one of the most straightforward ways of getting at ‘who’ it is that you really are…

What it is that has power over you, or that you have power over, is indicated by – in the main – all the members of that set of those ‘others’ that you might be in relation with. And, incidentally, I believe that you can also come to truly know yourself – or at least learn a great deal about yourself – by examining the set of all those things that you despise. (However this is another subject .. although, funnily enough, not entirely).

It is the place then where, for me, that ‘mirror of being’ can be found … Where I can see the essence of what, and who, it is that I am here – at least for most of the time. And where the root of those questions that begin with the word, “Why ……?”can be illuminated. Particularly where it concerns both my relationships with other beings, and the material world; and (more importantly) “Who, or what, is calling the shots here?”

‘Random Dribbling from the Twilight World of the Undead’
by Bob Hardy
(A series of fragments from Bob Hardy’s notebooks – from the late-1970’s to date)


Ever wonder why some people (many of them ‘famous celebrities’) remain in one form of psychotherapy or another (particularly the New Age, or amateur, variety) for years? … Here’s one reason, and in my opinion its a really good one. It concerns the view that some people have about what they fancy is, their ‘inner child’

Dependency in psychotherapy is generally understood as a father or mother transference and is viewed as a regression. Unfortunately the child/parent regression fantasy in psychotherapy can be damaging.

More often than not a client’s dependency reflects not the child but the invalid. Sometimes clients remain dependent upon their therapists for years – the child seems never to grow up. How can it? For we are not dealing with a child, but with an invalid – and his or her corresponding need to be dependent! …

One fails to realize that the absence of growth and healing points to the invalid, not to the child.

The child, we note … grows, and requires help only for a time.

From ‘The Emptied Soul’: On the Nature of the Psychopath (page 16)
by Guggenbruhl-Craig
Spring Publications 1980
An authentic life is one in which you don’t flee from your destiny, but one in which you shape it, as far as you can.
 Rick Roderick, The Self Under Siege.
(He continues on, his voice beginning to rise. Although by now he is clearly in a far more agitated state.) And by the way!!.. That ‘Commandment’ you were given … ‘Thou Shalt Not Steal’ … It doesn’t mean anything like .. say .. for instance …You’re dying of thirst, but you shouldn’t take water from that well there, because some asshole just told you that it belongs to him or her … (He is almost shouting now) Because that would obviously just be ***** ridiculous! … Wouldn’t it! (He pauses, and begins pacing from stage left to right before coming to rest, front center-stage – where he looks up into the lights for a second or two, before continuing on in a relatively normal voice)

No! … What that Commandment really means is actually … very .. simple. (He suddenly stands perfectly still and lowers his head, so that he is now looking directly at the audience, before continuing on in a somewhat animated and assertive manner) It just means … ‘You are not to appropriate the ‘Work’ of others … in order to then pass it off as belonging to … your … Self’!… (He looks down and continues on quietly – talking to himself) … Which could also actually have a great deal to do with your understanding of, or your breaking of, that First Commandment as well… Now that I come to think of it. (He smiles as he pauses, and then adds – almost in a whisper) And also all the rest of them …really(He relaxes visibly, looking up once more at his audience, and we hear him finally muttering through his teeth) Although it wouldn’t do to mention that to this lot though… (He chuckles – his face slowly breaking into a wide grin).

Fragment from ‘Field-notes for Armageddon’ by Bob Hardy


Humanity, along with all other creatures, is the work of God. But humanity is also called to be the workman of God.

Hildergard of Bingen – Vita (II, 35)


At some point in the past I realized that, at every moment, I was being presented with the opportunity to freely chose to Work… And my continuing belief in this realization has never been a problem for me since.

But how it is that I now go about seeking some justification or other for not doing so? …Well, that is a problem for me … In fact – and in a very real sense – it’s probably my only real problem.


Over the years, I’ve observed any number of people attempting to slavishly copy others in the ‘How to behave spiritually’ game’.

Which leads me to the conclusion that they have far more faith in who it is that they are trying to imitate, rather than in what it is they are supposed to do – that is, to engage in some form or other of praxis. But (and of crucial importance here) a praxis that they could at least attempt to originate in and from themselves.

They seem to find it extremely difficult to derive any sense of certitude from anything that has roots in themselves. Manifesting an overwhelming sense of insecurity the moment that they attempt to stand on their own two feet.

Forever trying then, to be what others ‘in the know’ tell them that they should be or what they are …

And so ending up only really ever having known themselves by hearsay.


That ‘Christ within’ idea? …Well it certainly doesn’t mean that somehow there’s ‘someone else here in the building with me’ or there’s ‘a little voice in my head’… Someone who is somehow playing a spiritual game of ‘hide and seek’ with me, as it were….

Would that things were that easy!


My attempts at ‘Involving the Will’ are actually attempts by me to exclude chance from my life… Or – to put it another way – it’s making use of any power that I might possess in order to exercise some control over my otherwise inevitable fate.


That hostility you experience towards others is hardly ever grounded in your dislike, or even in your hatred of them, but is almost always rooted in your particular devotion to, or in your worship of, or (more likely) your mindless adherence to, some external authority or other – be that authority a person; an ideology; or a ‘religious’ text.

Once you have subjected yourself to any external authority whatsoever, it then becomes a relatively simply matter for that authority to incite you. Usually by the simple process of feeding you a few carefully chosen words at the opportune moment; or (and far more mysteriously) by the simple process of you, yourself, feeding the same carefully chosen words to yourself at the opportune moment!

‘Random Dribbling from the Twilight World of the Undead’
by Bob Hardy
(A series of fragments from Bob Hardy’s notebooks – from the late-1970’s to date)


The way I go about things here almost invariably involves what others might view as far more than its fair share of what could be called, an ‘energetic-confrontational-approach’…  In fact, this is a technique of mine that you may have already noticed me using if you’re a regular reader of this blog … … It is, by and large, an intuitive method.

So then (initially at least) I don’t deliberately engage in ‘thinking’, or in any ‘ritualistic physical activity’… (However, perhaps I might begin to, say, ‘pace up and down’, but this is not a ‘deliberate’ act on my part – although I suppose it could be viewed as ritualist to some degree) … I simply ‘throw myself at things’, and allow myself to react here. And then attempt to observe my emotional reactions as they unfold (rise to the surface) – without identifying with them if I possibly can… (And good luck with that 🙂 ..).

If I can manage to do this, I will immediately experience an increase in all that ‘internal energy’ that has now (hopefully) begun to whiz around inside me… And if all now goes well, this will very quickly be converted by me into some form or other of intense internal discourse. One that I can (again hopefully) subsequently externalize in the form of a text (spoken or otherwise)… If, on the other hand,  it all goes ‘tits up’, then I will usually just get angry and frustrated – and will probably end up by throwing my dinner at the wall, or doing something equally as pointless.

By the way, this process is always accompanied by this increase in adrenalin, so it can be quite … exhilarating … (particularly if all goes well). But there is always the ever present danger of me now becoming addicted to this process (via this ‘adrenalin high’) – with all the attendant problems that this habit would then involve me in, etc . etc. …

There was a ‘procedure’ that I used to engage in – from sometime around the age of twenty-five up until I was in my early sixties – when, in order to ‘wake up’ in the morning, I would drink caffeine whilst listening to the morning news on the radio. This ritual would invariably succeed in irritating the hell out of me, and so make me aggressive – but I would also now be wide awake and full of energy. The problem now though, was that of separating out this energy and ditching the aggressive component or – to put it another way – attempting to break my continued identification with this overwhelming reactive response of mine, because I quite enjoyed it. And in the beginning this identification dominated my efforts so much that I was prevented from Working far more frequently than I succeeded in doing so.

But I did eventually became reasonably successful here, because I deliberately spent some time each day reminding myself of what it was that I was actually trying to accomplish!

So in my little world at least, all energy that is ‘called up’ is ‘tainted’ one way or another, and this is one of the pitfalls that I had to look out for when I began attempting to Work… And I had to try to develop the technique of ‘un-tainting’ this energy as it were, in order to involve it in what I ‘Will to do’ (which is, hopefully, to Work with it).

The negative quality of this energy (this ‘tainting’ or ‘adulteration’) is such that it will actually oppose me, seeking to impose its own authority on the process by flowing along all those previously established (by me and my ancestors) pleasure-orientated inertic patterns of reaction … And aren’t there loads of metaphors and allegories about that in popular culture, vis-a-vis  all those ‘good intentions’ that somehow never seem to make it to the light of day!

But – on the bright side – as I grew older, as I said, I learnt to be much more controlling of this process, even if initially, in the main, it was only because I was becoming more and more aware that this ‘adrenaline rush’  I was experiencing was now beginning to present me with any number of troubling ‘side-effects’, such that I now usually had to ‘go and have a little lie-down’ afterwards because I would begin to ‘feel a bit limp’  🙂 …)

It is of course possible to be just as reactive whilst appearing to be providing a measured, considered response… A type of inertic behavior that you will very frequently meet in many politicians and ‘gurus’… Beware! This response is just as mechanical. It’s merely more seductive, as you feel you’ve been ‘personally responded to’. You haven’t. The person providing this response has simply become very good at acting out this particular part.. And these are the beings you should really be on your guard against… ‘Slime-ball’ is the generic term for them – and you will become aware of a great deal of ‘slithering and sliding’ on their part as you manage to develop further here… It’s the common image of the ‘holy man’ that most people have (probably because it fits that stupid ‘benevolent big-daddy in the sky’ image that they’re so desperate for).. Focusing on the persona of John the Baptist  will help here… (Focusing on John the Baptist with a bad hang-over is even better).

If you are interested in all this, Eugene Halliday had much of interest to say about the negative aspect of this ‘rush’ … But I’m afraid that you’ll have to find this in his material for yourself.


In my world at least then, all states experienced as overpowering are the direct result of a bio-chemical process – so none of those nine chakras, with ‘special energy’ flowing up and down the spine for me I’m afraid. Don’t get me wrong, I think ideas like this are quite picturesque in their own way – as are any number of other exotically, culturally based, metaphors and allegories… But I find that the overwhelming majority of them are hopelessly outdated and needlessly obscure. And I believe that if you are serious about moving forward here, then they will simply confuse matters for you – although you will probably be superbly entertained in the process… And others could very easily come to view you as a bit of a guru or a witchy-poo if you spoke about all this, and they didn’t have a clue… But this particular social situation – and I know that it is one you can now easily land yourself in – is simply yet another one of the (actually rather minor, or ‘beginner’) obstacles here in all this… The fact is, that there are any number of people out there who will attempt to convince you that there is far more relevance to culturally outmoded forms of ritualistic behavior than there actually is, and their talking about it with those who are fortunate enough to be ignorant about these matters can occasionally make them sound a lot more trendy and ‘with it’ than they actually are.

Where it concerns any information here then, for most of the time I’m only ever interested in its eventual ‘use value’.

So let me just say that I prefer a bio-chemical approach, or a more rigorous scientific one, to matters like this… But, and most important of all here, I would also add that I also fully appreciate that these preferred approaches of mine are however, in the end, simply yet another culturally-based metaphor. But they are ones that I find I can Work with far more efficiently than those involving, for example, lotus leaves; beings with elephant heads and human bodies; females with thousands of hands and arms; and blue faced youths riding around on chariots … or burning bushes, and ‘angels of death’ for that matter… etc. etc.

That is not to say that the study of say Astrology, or Tarot cards, doesn’t have it’s place here. But my overwhelming impression of those who do engage in these sorts of enquiries is that it produces in them an irresistible urge to ‘play the pseudo-mystic’.  And I can’t help strongly suspecting that this was the whole idea in the first place – to make themselves ‘more interesting’.

Regrettably this also goes for many with an interest in depth psychology (and even some with an interest in modern physics). But in these fields there are, thankfully, many who do not and who still project a profound (and for me far more agreeable) sense of wonder at it all.

And I should also add here that parables are another matter entirely for me – always providing, of course that I’m comfortable with their particular mise-en-scene.

So, in my case then, I always try bear in mind that, ‘All that there is, is Sentient Power’… a contemporary (but now slightly out-of-date) metaphor created by Eugene Halliday – along with his particular perspective on accompanying contemporary terms such as, for example, ‘energy’; ‘field’; ‘force’; ‘consciousness’, etc. etc. Because I find that they are far easier for me to deal with … and so far more efficient, and so far more profitable for me in the end  …  🙂 … But just as magical..

Anyway, this is what I do in order to – as quickly as possible – get to the ‘location’ of that ‘limit of the application’ (that ‘frontier’ or ‘border’) of any term that I am attempting to incorporate into my active language  …A technique of mine then, that metaphorically I could say I experience as me being a bit ‘short sighted’ and – as a consequence – requiring me to get up as close as I can to any ‘matter of concern’, as quickly as possible…

So this doesn’t mean I’m obsessed with ‘making my point’ or ‘proving I’m right’ or anything like that, because I have absolutely no problem at all in ‘giving ground’ either – if I believe that in doing so I will move on. Because that’s the the whole point of this exercise anyway, the only reason i’m involved in this way in all this. And it is something that, thankfully, I manage to almost never to lose sight of for most of the time.

And so this is all very much part of my ‘system’ then; of what it is that I am actually attempting to do… But – to repeat – I certainly wouldn’t necessarily recommend this approach to anyone else.

All of which (as I mentioned above) will, I hope, explain why much of what I have posted below about ‘authority’, might (on first glance at least) appear to some to be far too acrimonious…


“This … You … that you were actually born as? … At what point in the game did you decide that it wasn’t really the ‘you’ that you wanted to be.. But rather … it dawned on you that in fact, with a little bit of effort you could just pretend to be whoever you wanted to be …

And so you decided to present yourself to the world as ‘someone else’ then… As someone … particularly … that you  ‘liked better’? … that you felt was ‘more deserving’..?

So then, instead of working for the development of your own potential, you decided that … as you were going to be  this ‘someone else’ – you were going to ‘work for the development of their potential’ instead (He pauses)

Look, it’s really not for me to say here… I mean, our motto is, after all, ‘Never try to educate a mug’ … But – and I know what I’m going to say now won’t really do any good … and that I’m probably wasting my breath here as usual … Can you not see that any decision of yours you decide to make here might have something really essential to do with all that ‘Honor thy father and thy mother’ business, and also with  ‘Don’t be going round worshiping idols’  (He pauses again) .. And further, that all that ‘Sins of the father’ business might not in fact be a condemnation of your present state –  experienced by you as a rather unfair or unjust burden –  but rather, might be far more like a helpful… a useful … piece of advice? (He smiles) One that might provide you with a  ‘little clue’ as to who it is – in part at least – that you really are …  if you Will …

Or do you think that these particular rules … these ‘Commandments’ … that you claim you received, were just ‘suggestions’ … Or that, in the case of these particular two, they simply mean something like, “You should always try to be nice to your mum and dad'” and that, “You shouldn’t have a statue of Baal parked on top of the fireplace in your living-room.” …

(He pauses again, before adding assertively) But don’t let me put words in your mouth! …(He pauses again) Tell me… Please… What do you think these particular …. ‘Commandments’ (He grins broadly) might mean? … 

(His grin quickly fades as he pauses, and looks up again directly.  Then, once again, he grins broadly, before speaking) … I’ll just leave that with you for the moment… If I may.”

Fragment from ‘Field-notes for Armageddon’ by Bob Hardy


It is common for very infantile people to have a mystical, religious feeling. They enjoy this atmosphere, in which they can admire their beautiful feelings. But they are simply indulging their auto-eroticism. ~ C G Jung, ETH Lecture 11 Jan 1935, Pages 171.


One positive consequence of my belief that Work is only taking place when I allow my essential authentic nature the ‘freedom to be’, is that it has allowed me to see very clearly that there must – and very obviously so – be any number of other ways of going about all this, if only because all beings have their own unique ‘essential authentic natures’ and might come from entirely different cultural backgrounds . … Which might mean that I could eventually come to view some of them as ‘traveling in the opposite direction to me’ so to speak, in order for them to engage in their own particular Working…

And, from time to time I can really appreciate that this is in fact how they are experiencing their ‘being here’, a realization on my part that is, incidentally, really good when it does happen.

And so for me if Working is, in the end, for the most part all about ‘who is doing what’ here, then this account of mine (such as it is) should be seen by you as merely an attempt on my part to document – as well as I am able – how it is that I do it; how I go about all this ….  …

And although I think that Eugene Halliday wasn’t particularly clear about this aspect of Working, he was the first person that I came across who was demonstrating that working could be done – and through my attempts to understand his talks and essays, that ideally Working was the only thing that should be done … That Working is what we are all really here to do … But that you can only freely will to engage in it … And also that you must arrive at that point in your life (that ‘gate’ as I metaphorically experienced it) where you can clearly see that you have been presented with the choice to do so.. And that – at this crucial point – this is a decision that only you ‘alone’ can make … … or not..

So then, ‘suggested methods’ from others are, as I see it, very often pretty much useless here in the end, if what you do is simply decide to take their suggestions on board ‘lock, stock, and barrel’. Because a crucial part of all this is that you have to arrive at the start of your own ‘journey’ (at that ‘gate’ of mine, in my case) by yourself, and under your own steam.  And even though you might ‘hear this call’ reflected off others in some form or other, it is only you who can then decide to provide some level of appropriate response to it…

Even if (like any good Buddhist) you soon after come to realize that this particular beginning of yours (that ‘gate’ of mine) wasn’t really there in the first place! 🙂

Here’s one of my favorite gates…

The Gate
Photo by Bob Hardy


But if you do happen to come to some account or other of this ‘illusory nature of things’ ‘in the literature’ and not come to see see it for yourself?…. Well, sadly perhaps, it’s not some idea that you can simply ‘lift’ from one or other translation of some Buddhist text that you’ve been skimming over; or that you’ve heard about from some species or other of ‘enlightened Western guru’, or gleaned from some talk or other that you attended for an hour or so when you had nothing better to do, and that you now fancy you ‘understand’. …And it isn’t like some kind of fancy conjuring trick that you can ‘just figure out’ either… It has to be ‘realized’ by you (it has to be real – ized’ might be better)… That is, you have to have fallen for it first, and then know that you have … And that even though you have realized it, at some point (perhaps only a moment later) you have fallen for it again… So it’s an ‘illusion proper’ and not just a ‘trick’ that you have worked out and so doesn’t ever ‘work on you’ again.. To put it another way – you must have experienced the realization that the nature of the world is an illusion, but that before the cock crowed three times you were right back in it again.. And that this will keep on happening, no matter how long you beaver away at those yoga exercises… And you have to be totally OK with that..

So the idea here then, is that you have to actively search for your own ‘gate’ (or whatever); and having found it, you have to then realize that it wasn’t really there.

This is why, if I am seriously questioned about my own methods here, before I venture to provide any reply, my natural ‘energetic confrontational nature’ will initially require at least a brief account of how it is that the questioner actually goes about all of this for themselves; and not what it is that they have to say about the way in which they ‘think about’ how it is that I do so.


But first!..

Investigating the creative output of others is – I believe – an excellent way of going about attempting to understand (or at least appreciate) one aspect of  ‘Authority’.. In this case, what it is (ideas, etc), or who it is (individuals, schools, etc.), that individual beings ‘Will’ to place themselves under in order to ‘be creative’ (another aspect here then of that ‘Governing Concept’ of Eugene Halliday’s) …

Although – if you get the general idea of my take on the ‘authentic’ and ‘genuine’ aspects of being – you’ll understand why I would also maintain that this ‘investigating’ on your part is no guarantee that any benefit here will see you subsequently ‘striking off in the right direction’ ..

Be that as it may … in my opinion, an excellent example of this creative output is the book, ‘Shakespeare King Educator’.

Authored by both Eugene Halliday and David Mahlowe – it presents an interpretation of Shakespeare’s plays from the point of view of Eugene Halliday’s ‘metaphysics’.

Here’s a pdf copy: Shakespeare King Educator – Eugene Halliday and David Mahlowe

David Mahlowe also gave a number of talks on both the ‘The Baird’, and also the theater (subjects very close to his heart). So here’s a selection of these that you might like to listen to as well:

Commentary on ‘A Winter’s Tale’ – by David Mahlowe

Theater and the Cosmic Drama – by David Mahlowe

Three Talks on Shakespeare – by David Mahlowe

The Incarnate Word – by David Mahlowe

I met up with David Mahlowe on a fairly regular weekly basis at Parklands (whenever I could make it) – between the late 1970’s and late 1983 – as a member of a group there. I also saw him somewhat infrequently after that whenever I was in the country, and I also exchanged a number of letters with him after Eugene Halliday died.

His wife, Zero Mahlowe, became both a friend and confidant of mine for a number of years during the period beginning some ten years or so after David’s death when I worked regularly with her for two (sometimes three) whole days per week at her home, on the production of audio versions of some of Eugene’s written work.

I also interviewed her extensively during this time about her life both before, and after, she met Eugene Halliday, and of course while she was married to David. I recorded much of this material, but there was also a great deal of it that she would only allow me to write down (and I have obviously never shown or discussed this material with others, as it was of a confidential nature). Zero did however allow me to pass on her approved edited recorded material that I collected from her for an ethnographic study that I was doing.

I mention all this here because a great deal of that first-hand material Zero Mahlowe so generously provided me with, served to endorse my own attempts at Working with those two terms, ‘genuine’ and ‘authentic’. Terms that – even back then – I had already intuited were perhaps being far too heavily influenced by my understanding of the Jungian terms ‘persona’; ‘ego’; ‘shadow’, and ‘Self’, and so didn’t quite ‘gel’ (were proving somewhat unsatisfactory) when it came to illuminating, or accounting for, my own experience(s) of myself.

I would just also like to add here, that I have no doubt both David and Zero Mahlowe were two of the very few people I have personally ever met who I would say had actually attempted to ‘Work’ with Eugene Halliday’s material – at least in the sense that I use that term. And also that Zero had used this term ‘Working’ (and had done so for decades) in exactly the same way that I had found myself doing, which was something of a relief for me – particularly as she went on to tell me she was absolutely certain that this was the sense in which Eugene also used the term… And finally, she also told me she had no doubt at all that – among those who claimed to be his ‘followers’, or whatever –  Eugene Halliday was well aware of who was, and who was not, Working,


Alan Roberts gave a series of talks on ‘Shakespeare King Educator’ some eight years ago that you might also find useful here. Video clips of these can be found on his YouTube site. So here’s a link to the first one: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=03kHF1Wd49s . The rest of these talks will show up as links, down the right-hand side of this youtube page of Alan’s.

NOTE: Alan very recently sent me a great book (‘History In English Words’ by Owen Barfield. Published by Lindisfarne Press) that has a small piece in it about how Barfield sees words ‘coming to be’ …

The example Barfield uses is the word ‘quality’ – a word that he claims ‘is used by most educated people every day of their lives’ . He goes on:

…(Y)et in order that we should have this word, Plato had to make the tremendous effort (it is one of the most exhausting which man is called on to exert) of turning a vague feeling into a clear thought. He invented the new word ‘poiotēs’, ‘what-ness’, as we might say, or ‘of-what-kind-ness’, and Cicero translated it by the Latin ‘qualitas’..

If you realize just how pivotal to me this ‘bringing-into-being’ of a word is in all of this, and can get at least some sense of just how difficult it is to do in practice, then you can understand why it is that I believe that this particular example of this process by Owen Barfield  illuminates what the essence of Working on one’s ‘active’ language is actually about.

I would put it this way. It was necessary here for Plato to ‘bring to be’, or to create, this particular component of his ‘active language’ by creating this new word. Out of what Barfield describes as, ‘a vague feeling’ – but which I would claim was actually far more like a ‘definite state of being’; a state which, at least up until that moment in the history of the West, had not been ‘trapped in language’.

This is a process that has nothing whatsoever to do with the production of ‘verbal labels’. Those attempts by various groups, such as the media, or the entertainment, or the automobile industries; or New-Age gurus etc. – to coin new words, or to simply debase existing ones (try ‘awesome’, or – for a really puke-provoking example, how about ‘conscious uncoupling’… A clue as to what’s going on here? … The use of that word ‘coin’, in the phrase ‘coin a new word’) …

All of which means that turning a passive component of your already existing language into an activate one should be a far less demanding effort for you, than creating an active word from scratch. If only because others will have done the Work for you… But of course you still have  learn to know how, and where, to look  🙂 …


It is the peculiar and perpetual error of the human understanding to be more moved and excited by affirmatives than by negatives.—Francis Bacon

‘Confirmation Bias’ refers to a type of selective thinking whereby one tends to notice and to look for what confirms one’s beliefs, and to ignore, not look for, or undervalue the relevance of what contradicts one’s beliefs.”—Robert Todd Carroll, The Skeptic’s Dictionary.

I have lost count of the number of those I have met who imagine that they are ‘onto something’ or are ‘understanding it all’, or are even claiming to be ‘getting messages from beyond’, but who seem to be completely unaware that, until they develop an ‘active language’ (in the sense that I believe the example immediately above by Owen Barfield clearly provides) such that they can articulate clearly to other interested parties what it is that they claim they are experiencing – then their claims to be really ‘informed’ are of no more value here than those accusations they often go on to make about those people who don’t understand what they are saying; or claim that they are ‘being blocked somehow’ from seeing all these ‘obvious facts’ of theirs’:  or believe that they are ‘being deliberately ignored’ …

And I believe the reason why they behave like this is blatantly obvious: they conflate the degree of discomfort that they have experienced, and the magnitude of this past experience (and may still to some extent be experiencing) with the clarity of what it is that they imagine they (as a consequence of this experience) have now come to ‘know’..

So even though they are unable to express themselves clearly – not having developed the necessary ‘active components’ of their language here (to describe as accurately and succinctly as possible what it is that they have actually experienced) – they will still insist (for whatever excuse they imagine they have) that they ‘know’ something… Confusing this ‘knowing’ then with ‘experiencing’… As in their answer to the question, “What the hell happened to you then?” which always seems to be some variety or other of, “I don’t know, but it was great (or scary; or spiritual, etc) ..!”

Knowing that something happened is not the same thing at all as knowing about what happened, or why it happened – and it is certainly not the same thing as being able to express this experience clearly to others.

To get anywhere here, there are three states that you must go through, and then reflect upon:

1). The state you were in when you had this experience(s).
2). The state you were in later, that was very largely a consequence of your negativity. Due in large measure to the frustration at your inability to clearly conceptualize this experience, such that it could be clearly understood – either to yourself, or to others.
3). The state you were in when you finally managed to do so.

And here’s the really interesting thing about all this for me (because I probably won’t really care all that much about your ‘experiences’). How do you know when you’ve experienced ‘State 3)’ here? …Well, that will be when you discover that you have now significantly modified your remembered experience of ‘State 1)’ …! In other words, when you come to realize (by reflecting upon these three contingent states of yours) that you have succeeded in actually changing your past, by the simple (but by no means easy) process of articulating your previous experiences here satisfactorily to yourself  … …

Real magic then! 🙂

And … before I forget. What you should really do now – having experienced this ‘State 3’ – is immediately Work on understanding a little more about what it is that you now mean by that word ‘time’  … 🙂 …  Tie this word up then, so that it also now becomes a far more active component of your vocabulary. And if you still find that ‘time’ means the same thing to you that it always did, then I would claim that you haven’t in fact really experienced ‘State 3’ at all… You only imagine that you have..


So anyway… ‘Authority’ then …. What are the questions here? … ….Well – and among many others – these would be: What is ‘authority’?; From whence does it emanate (what – as it were – is its archetypal nature)?; How, and by whom, is it assumed?; How is it experienced by those who ‘come under’ it?; How is it symbolically represented? .. etc. etc…


By the way, Eugene Halliday had a great deal to say about the concept of – what he referred to as – ‘control’ – or (as he rather neatly puts it) ‘rotation about a common center’.


ROUGH DRAFTS (No stage or scenic directions yet. Unedited speech only) 

“…In order for you to do what it is that you do (or have done), what is it that other beings in the world have to do (or have done)? … Because these particular relationships of yours – the ones that I’m betting you very rarely (if ever) think about (or even want to think about) – are among those that make up most of your real connection(s) to the world.. 

All those possessions of yours (some of which you might even claim you have had to ‘save up’ for; ‘sacrificed’ for; or ‘gone without’ for)  … …. What was it that was demanded of others (those that produced these ‘things’) in order for these possessions of yours to ‘come to be’…. That is, so that they could even exist – for there to even be the possibility then that you might, at some future time, own them … In order to enjoy them? …

Who was it paid that price for you?

If you don’t really want to look at things like this too closely … or for too long … (“What can I do about it? … This is just the way that it is.”) … Then I would say that you have very little possibility of understanding who it is – in the main – that you really are; or how far it is that you still have to go; and how little it is – in the end – that you have actually done, or are ever going to do here …

Try subtracting all these things from your life, … All your possessions; all your ‘qualifications’; all your family ties, and then tell me what’s left.. … Do you believe that there would still be a you… then?

And who might that ‘you’ be? … Can you tell me anything about this you? (He smiles) … The important stuff only will do (He pauses)

If you’re having trouble here providing an answer to this question … Try imagining these scenarios..

If you’d suffered some form of immense personal disaster… If you had to flee your home … lost all your possessions … all your relatives were killed (and you certainly know that this is actually happening to many people down here as we speak) who is it that would .. remain? …

Or.. further…. if, when you die, you actually do believe that ‘you can’t take any of this with you’.” … What at that point thenare you? … That moment after you take that ‘last breath’ of yours? …(He pauses for a slightly longer period, and begins to look quizzical)  

Do you believe that you might then be .. ‘free at last’ … of all this? …

And if you do …. That involvement with others that you indulged in…(He pauses again) How do you see the price that they had to pay in order for this ‘you’  to come to be? … This ‘you’, that ‘came to be’ as a direct consequence – in part at least – of ‘your’ relationships with ‘them’… Relationships that wove together that life of yours … that you then claim you felt somehow trapped in … But that – if you bother to think about – you had to have experienced… if only to have then experienced becoming free of it when your life ..was over ….

Or do you believe that essentially you are no-one, a sort of ‘unattached pureness’?… Some sort of ‘essence’ then? (He pauses before exclaiming) .. …In which case … In that final analysis … What the hell was the point of  your time down here then; what was all that really about ?.. Then?”


“Where exactly does your breakfast come from?… Under what conditions are those who produce the roughage contained in that vegan diet of yours laboring? …

Those electronic devices that you like to play with… How do you feel about the child labor that was pressed into service in order for them to be manufactured?

Who … and just how many … had to suffer anonymously  in order for you to enjoy those material objects that you claim you ‘own’…. And that you – in your attempts to self-justify’ your ownership here –  claim that you, “Worked for,” or even, “Went without for.”  …


“In the light of your efforts here then, Would you maintain that.. to you … all this is simply a manifestation of … ‘cosmic justice at work’?  For you?… And so that, in the end then this is all ‘quite fair’? ….  

That power… that ‘Authority’ … which the view you subsequently come to have of yourself here has placed  over ‘you’ – this ‘you’ that you have constructed … How would you begin to explain this power to yourself? … How did it come to determine you?  … What sorts of things would you have to do here in order to free yourself from it?(He is clearly beginning to have more and more difficulty proceeding here) …Because, if you were ever called to account for your being here… just exactly what sorts of … things … do you believe you … would be held accountable for?  …(He is now massaging his brow with his fingers almost continually – clearly searching for inspiration).

What would that mirror placed in front of you actually show you about your time here? How could it represent any ‘Authority’ here … at this judgement? … Do you see yourself being dragged reluctantly in front of some sort of Judge? …. Some agency or other, forcing you to consider all those things that have gone on in your life; of showing you with undeniable clarity just how much you ‘went along with it all’?

Whatever it is that can do that to you; that can do that for you… surely this would be this ‘authority’ you’re so fond of going on about!…(He has stopped pacing before turning to the audience. His voice returning to normal).

Or could it be far worse… Could it all ‘drop away’ and you ‘just see’ with blinding clarity exactly how you created all of this … By yourself… With yourself… For yourself.. 

But then of course, if you ponder on all this for too long, you’ll be able to claim that you’re simply another victim down here… Because …Look! … Doesn’t thinking about all this make you suffer already? .. Fill you with your very own existential angst … with your very own ’bouts of depression’?… …”

Fragments (Working On) from ‘Field-notes for Armageddon’ by Bob Hardy


To learn who rules over you, simply find out who it is that you are not allowed to criticize.


(B)eing both intelligent and working class was usually a recipe for trouble.

In the lower orders – lacking academic aspirations – genuine intelligence manifested itself as a kind of cunning…

From ‘Jerusalem’ by Alan Moore  (Page 719)
Published by Liveright – 2016



How to manipulate that clerk who works behind the counter at your local civic office… Particularly if you’re ‘getting on’ a bit.

Wear slightly ill-fitting clothes… It makes those in charge here (who are usually only ever junior clerks) nervous… You might also try wearing a tie. But position it badly – the knot of the tie should be a half-an-inch or so to one side of the top shirt button and maybe on the front of the collar on that side – but don’t overdo it too much.

A button-up cardigan, with either, buttons missing, or buttoned-up incorrectly, will also assist you here to look not only ‘mentally fragile’, but also – and more importantly – someone who is at least still attempting to stick to the rules.

Being, in-the-main, clean shaven – but with one or two small areas of your face that you have obviously ‘missed’ – works well here; as does wearing light colored trousers with vaguely suspicious stains on them (but don’t overdo this).

Be sure to be also clutching, what appears to be an impressive sheaf of documents or correspondence – slightly crumpled is OK… Dropping one or two now and again also adds to this picture that you’re trying to create..

When called by that clerk, immediately approach the desk, sit down, and simply keep repeating what it is you are trying to get them to do, no matter what is said to you. It also helps if you start in with this request of yours immediately upon your arrival at the desk…. And it’s even better if you can manage to start talking before the clerk here has acknowledged your existence…

If you can also manage it, act as if you might possibly start shouting, or crying, at any moment . The latter is best – but is far more difficult to pull off.

If, subsequently, it seems to you that you might be cornered by questions that are probing your situation far too thoroughly for your liking, then simply switch to repeating the following Mantra at every available opportunity, “Last week when I was in here, ‘the lady said’…,”  quickly followed by –  “She told me that I could … (adding that original request of yours) …” If questioned about the identity of this ‘lady’, be as general, and as vague. as you possibly can.

Very important here though – resist the temptation to ‘ham it up’.

This technique (or variations of it) can be astonishingly effective in all sorts of quite different scenarios.

A great way of gaining the upper hand here then… Of taking charge without appearing to … Or, if you prefer it, off assuming (of becoming) the ‘real’ authority in this situation – in that it is you who is actually dictating the subject here – the direction of that ‘script’ you have authored .. Although most of those who are watching you in action here would never realize that this is what is really happening.… (Situations like this also represent one of the really, really, important interpretations of that tarot card – ‘The Emperor’ – the one that most self-proclaimed experts in this field seem to believe represents some relation or other of the King of Denmark)… …

It is simply a mistake on your part to believe that someone who ‘speaks with authority’ is necessarily superior to anyone else in any way whatsoever… (But getting the rank-and-file to react as if they are is one of the oldest con-tricks in the world).

In many situations and relationships that we find ourselves in, who it is that is actually ‘writing that script’ is not always as obvious as it might at first seem – not even to those who are mouthing the words … and certainly not to outsiders.

So it is crucial to bear in mind here – when you find yourself listening to someone who everyone else is behaving towards as if they were in a position of authority, that this does not mean – in some way – what is being said has anything to necessarily recommend it …

What is imperative here, is that you pay particular attention to yourself when presented with the trappings of this assumed authority (by, for example, being aware that the person speaking is doing so from a specially constructed stage; or is continually making use of the ‘royal we’; or is surrounded by fawning sycophants; etc. etc.) …

And be sure that you understand this attempt by you to focus on yourself in situations such as this is actually an extremely difficult thing to do – at least when you first ‘give it a go’; and certainly when you are surrounded by others who are all ‘going along with it all’ here… A situation where you can, more often than not, find yourself losing confidence in yourself … (However, if you do happen to find yourself thinking, “Surely they can’t all be crazy?,” in situations like this … try picturing a ‘Nuremberg Rally’).

Most people you will meet are merely ‘players’, who are automatically haphazardly thinking through the same old patterns (or fragments) of ideas (hence ‘half-baked’), that tend to continually rise up in them  – usually as a consequence of their inability to resist dabbling in ‘that juicy part’ that they have either selected for themselves (and so cannot now stop identifying completely with); or have been seduced into playing; or – through the passive acceptance of social conventions are now ‘stuck’ with – and have subsequently come to realize in themselves.

‘Random Dribbling from the Twilight World of the Undead’
by Bob Hardy
(A series of fragments from Bob Hardy’s notebooks – from the late-1970’s to date)


So who is, and who is not, in charge down here?

‘Authority’ … What is it? Where does it come from?… (Leaving aside obvious answers here such as ‘brute force’)…

Can you ‘do it on your own?’ That is, does the existence of any ‘authority’ at all always imply that there is more than one being hanging around somewhere? ..

Does it make sense to ‘claim authority over ones-self’ (not the same thing at all as ‘claiming sovereignty over oneself’ by the way).

And who, or what exactly, is it that finally gets to decide here; who actually gets to sort the hierarchy out; or is it a sort of natural thing, an ‘implicit order’? .. And is there, in fact, an ‘Ultimate authority’?

How does anyone arrive at a position to be able to say, “I am telling YOU that this is ‘the way it is’ ?” Or (if they’re really smart) “Perhaps you will allow me to make the following suggestion? … This is ‘the way it is’.” …

Or – even odder (and far more interesting as far as I am concerned) – how do these ‘authoritative figures’ often ‘come to be’, because others were intent on placing them in this particular position of authority – whether they liked it or not 🙂 

And – strangest of all perhaps – that these ‘authority figures’ are saddled with this position of authority,  even if it is central to their ‘message’, that those who claim any understanding here (their ‘flock’, as it were), can only make this claim to have arrived at this understand by becoming the sole authorities in their own lives!

And how do other factors at play here – those that contribute to the ‘geographically localized ascension’ of this ‘authoritative figure’ for instance, actually influence the formation of any subsequent hierarchy?

How do these factors actually ‘work’? That is, is there some causal chain of events here that can be documented?

How do we grasp this ‘coming-to-be’ – the eventual formation of this ‘group’ then?

A group complete with its own pecking order…

What, as it were, would constitute a reasonable account of the dynamic evolution of the social and cultural mores that are at play here?

And how does this ‘group’ then evolve further (if ‘evolve’ is the correct word here)? ..

How exactly is it that others are ‘taken into’ the fold? … And what, at this point, is the relationship between that original ‘founder’ (that ‘authoritative figure’) and the subsequent ‘carryings-on’ of those who are making some claim or other to be engaged in this ‘carrying on’?

Does it all come about (for all practical purposes at least) by, for example, the input of cash from an interested philanthropist? Cash that provides the necessary means of implementing some form of ‘structure’ here in all this (the acquisition of ‘premises’ perhaps). A benefactor who then – willingly or unwillingly – finds themselves assuming some sort of ‘Chancellor of the Exchequer’ position here. Such that – like it or not – they find that they now have a ‘say in things’; and even, perhaps, begin to ‘take a hand’ in the running of affairs here – such that they are now, to some degree or other, in a position to be able to ‘direct the course of events’, and so influence the contents of any subsequent ‘Mission Statement’? … (Or was that the whole idea on their part in the first place 🙂 …).

And although our authoritative figure is -as it were – still the ‘head honcho’, somehow the clarity of their position is now conveniently ‘muddied’. Such that any event here that subsequently appears to the rank-and-file, to have gone slightly askew, can now always be conveniently explained by pointing out the reasonable multiplication of all those various ‘at-odds’ ambitions; misunderstood handed-down instructions; or incorrect ‘personal’ interpretations of ‘messages’; etc. etc.  

And interestingly (and in the same way) who, and how, does any actual ‘second-in’ command’ (the ‘heir apparent’) come to be selected? … And how does the ‘next level’ after that – the ‘inner-circle’ that everyone involved here is so desperate to be members of – come to be? …

Who ‘inherits’ the various mantles of power here then? … And by what process is that achieved? .. Is it, say, by making attempts to demonstrate some degree of understanding re our authoritative figure’s various utterances etc; or is it by some quasi-legal process of  claiming subsequent ownership of them?

And what does any of this have to do with the actual meaning contained in those various utterances and writings of our ‘Authoritative Figure’? What, that is, does it have to do with any ‘Message’ that might be present here? … … 

If those who have chosen to involve themselves here go on to claim to then ‘know the same things’ as our ‘Authoritative figure’. How could this claim of ‘knowing the same things’ actually be possible if it were understood that there is an essential ‘experiential dimension’ to any ‘knowing’ of this sort? – And that, in fact, absent this essential experiential dimension – all that any claimant here can do is to learn (to memorize by rote) those scattered fragments of material here that have momentarily ‘taken their fancy’…

Would it rather not just simply ‘be the case’ that any attempt to propagate these concepts would have to necessarily begin with some form of personal account of their initial acquisition, their subsequent understanding, and their consequent embodying; an embodying that would in fact – to other interested parties – be clearly, and obviously, grounded in this experiential understanding.


How, in short, do any gathering of sycophants ever come to ‘sort themselves out’ into some form of intelligible hierarchy here? … Or are their perceived self-appointed ‘rankings’ actually something else entirely perhaps?

Could it be that they have simply fallen under some sort of mechanical deterministic ‘cosmic law’? …. And that really, in the end – because they have not actually been doing anything – because they have never exercised their Will in order to do any Work – their imagined positions are no more that illusions. Similar to those patterns we imagine that we see when we stare for too long at clouds, or into a fire? Something then that we would like to see (products of our own imagination then) but that do not really exist? 

Well actually – and in a certain very definite sense – that is exactly what I do believe happens! .. And this, indeed, is a state of affairs that goes a very long way to revealing to me just how everything down here comes to be so perfectly the way that it is …  A combination of selfishly motivated aims, together with blind mechanical determinism.

How else would you explain how we got from Jesus of Nazareth, to: The Pope; the UK monarch’s position as ‘Defender of the Faith’; the modern state of Israel; your local bishop blessing an aircraft carrier; the Vatican library; the burning of witches; the Latin Mass; the ‘Virgin Mary’ up there in heaven with God; ‘Fundamentalism’; ‘Creationism’; modern banking practices; heaven, hell, purgatory, etc. etc – all of which are central to our, so-to-say, ‘Christian Culture’ here in the West (and I say that it’s even more **** up in the Middle and Far East). A culture that has – it is claimed – come about as a direct consequence of ‘His Message’… A current state of affairs then, about which He presumably would then say something like, “Well yes! Of course! Well done! How could it all have turned out any other way?… Carry on chaps!!”

But then, if you’re one of those who have already come to the conclusion that something appears to have gone horribly wrong down here, just how is it that you are now dealing with this revelation of yours? … And what exactly is it that now determines any subsequent decisions, or courses of action, on your part? What, in short, are you actually going to do about it?…

Perhaps you have discovered that, although this is all ‘very interesting’ and probably very important – even crucial in some essential way… Actually you’re far too busy at the moment to attend to it. Or, to tell the truth, you discover that, in the end, you don’t really care? 🙂


But if there are those who are sufficiently impressed, sufficiently convinced by ‘authority’ (of whatever kind) to ‘spread this word’ themselves, in far-off exotic places such as Australia, or Portugal – absent any clear remit from whoever it was that originally authored this stuff – what has gone on here? … Has this come about simply as a consequence of these newly self-appointed experts, that next generation of ‘the keepers of this flame’ being dazzled  by the power, and then intuiting cunningly that presenting themselves as also ‘in the know’ will illicit a smile or two from the ladies ; of being somehow overcome by the appeal of certain ideas – of becoming victims then?… And if so, what is it in these people that these ideas actually initially appeal to? … Is it their desire, their hunger, their basic need, to know? … Or is it that they are chasing after the status that their subsequent propagation of these ideas appears (to them) to eventually confer… … Which, sad to say, is how I normally only ever tend to see them …


How does that original ‘authoritative figure’ now come to be presented to any new public, by these ‘heir apparents’? …

For example, do actual concrete events, such as profound social changes have to take place that, it is believed, have been (it is claimed) in some way predicted; or have arisen somehow as a direct consequence of these ideas. Ideas that originated with these ‘Authoritative figures’… Because, for example, it is claimed by these ‘heir apparents’ that these ideas are somehow ‘fundamental to’ (are determining in some way) what it is that is going on down here; and thus serve to demonstrate the ‘truth value’ of our Authoritative figure’s pronouncements ..

NOTE: Re any ability to ‘peer into the future’…

I would say that, up until his death in 1986, Eugene Halliday had next to nothing to say about computers and ‘artificial intelligence’ et al., primarily because he knew next to nothing about the subject – as indeed (it seemed to me) was the case with the overwhelming majority of those who attended his talks…

Eugene Halliday certainly didn’t see this ‘internet – social networking etc. thing’ coming then – at least from all the available evidence that I’ve examined… In other words, he missed the single most profound change in the world at large that was taking place right under his nose…

(Even so, I would love to know what he would have to say about the subject today 🙂 …)

He did seem to me however, to be telling others (pre 1984) that WWIII was imminent or, at the very least, did not seem to me to assuage this belief in his (what shall we call them) ‘prominent’ followers. But what a wonderful way to bind like-minded people together into a ‘community’. Let’s face it, it certainly worked in Jonestown.

Actually it is always very interesting to me to witness just how often there is a complete absence of any prediction here, where it concerns really significant major events.  One obvious world-changing event that was ‘unforeseen’ by absolutely everyone, including all those astrologers; those in the know at various Institutes for Consciousness Studies: assorted ‘magician folk’ – ‘New Age’ and old; academics; economists; political theorists; military strategists; etc – was the collapse of the old Soviet Union… And as someone who was actually in Berlin at the time (and had already been there for a few days when it happened) I can tell you that absolutely no-one was predicting the imminent ‘Fall of the Berlin Wall’ either – not even those living in its shadow, so to speak… In fact, when I actually went to the wall on the day the guards left to see for myself what was going on, and talk to a few of the people there, it was blatantly obvious that the West Berliners etc. had been taken completely by surprise.

So I don’t believe that anyone can ‘see into the future’. In fact I believe that it’s a particularly imbecilic idea, and that what various folk are doing when they speak (there’s that language thing again 🙂 …), when they claim to be able to ‘predict’ (and I will admit that sometimes a number do appear to get things ‘sort of’ right’) has nothing to do with ‘seeing anything’, but that something else entirely is going on, and has more to do with speculation based on the collection of available data, or personal past experience (“I’ve been in this situation a couple of times and in my experience this ALWAYS happened next.”) …  And that would go for every single one of these claims for me by the way – except for one… The one where I say, “At some time in the future I will certainly be dead.”


I should, perhaps, also take the opportunity here to mention that a very fashionable idea (particularly with young folk) during the 1960’s and ’70’s  was ‘The Dawning of the Age of Aquarius’.

In case you don’t know, Aquarius is a fixed air sign, with the obvious implication then that – as we moved into it during the twenty-first century – we would all, as a consequence, be ‘taking up residence in our heads’ – the place where we store all the information that we need – so to speak. And, as a consequence, things will then get so much cooler, because we won’t be getting so over-emotional about everything and getting hot and sticky, all the time 🙂 

Eugene Halliday did have a number of interesting things to say about this subject, although his focus seems, to me, to be that ‘The Aquarian Age’ will be – for all intents and purposes – the same thing as ‘The Scientific Age’, which isn’t my position here at all (see next para) In fact, my view re this ‘Scientific Age’ is that we’ve already almost completed it, and are actually in the process of leaving it behind. I would say that we are moving into, what could be labelled, more of  a ‘hyper-real scientific-age simulacrum’  – which you probably think is a bit weird ….

If you’re interested, you can download the audio-file of Eugene Halliday’s talk ‘The Aquarian Age’ from here http://eugenehallidayarchive.info/ You can also get a transcript of that same talk at Josh Hennessy’s site, here http://www.eugene-halliday.net/ 

I don’t see ‘The Dawning of The Age of Aquarius’ then, influencing our existence in the way that Eugene Halliday describes it. Or to put that another way – although I do agree in principal with much of what he does say, I don’t give his viewpoint the same degree of prominence in the unfolding of future events.

I don’t want to go into my position here in any detail. But I will just mention (as just one example of my perspective here) I believe it is far more important to realize that, where it does concern ‘matters of the mind’, we have already moved to a situation where the overwhelming majority of folk here can no longer perceive (can no longer distinguish between) ) what we used to refer to (roughly up until the mid-1960’s’) as accounts of ‘The News’ – that is, those events that went on ‘out there in the world’, and that we were led to believe had some bearing on our daily lives – from the avalanche of ‘information’ that we are all now continually being bombarded with, and that now constitutes not only a major part of our entertainment, but also functions to pattern our social behaviour… So you are now liable to be asked by anyone, at any moment, about any incident that you have been told is taking place on that ‘Word Stage’ ‘out there’, and about which you are required to have either a ‘succinct’ (a word I am using here instead of ‘suitable car bumper-sticker’) fashionable reply for, or a radical opposition to (complete with either as much ‘wailing, rending of garments, and gnashing of teeth’, or ‘hysterical proclamations of joy’, that you can muster). You are also expected to ditch most of these ‘responses’ of yours (usually) in a matter of weeks, in order to ‘take up a sea of positive or negative arms’ for or against the next fashionable event ‘ that is about to collide with you from ‘out there’ … …

So, in my world, ‘News’ no longer exists … However, I would go on to then claim that I believe most of you out there are all so busy reacting to this barrage of ‘information’, that you have failed to notice its disappearance…. And that you will still insist on attempting to discuss what you believe to be this ‘News’. Particularly – at least as far as you’re concerned – those ‘important world events’ that you have been  suckered into believing ‘matter’ to you ..

A situation that, I will confess, I still find – to varying degrees – somewhat irritating… and in my darker moments, highly amusing … 🙂

And, in fact, I wouldn’t mind betting that the overwhelming number of ‘world events’ that you are so intent on maintaining are ‘crucially important’ to you – from the ‘death of the bumble-bee’ to the latest fashionable ‘disaster’ are no such thing at all…. In fact I would go so far as to say that if I claimed most of them were actually figments of the imagination of newspaper hacks, you would have no real way of demonstrating to my satisfaction that they were in fact definitely ‘true’, that they were ‘accurate accounts’. At very least where it might demonstrate anything in your life that you have actually experienced and that demonstrates this truth for you – other than the ‘thrill’ of entertaining yourself with these accounts … I wouldn’t go as far as to claim that we might all be living in a ‘Matrix-like’ simulation, but ‘Disneyland’ would be a far more accurate description for me – and a cheap run-down version of that would be an even better  one.

No exciting ‘Aquarian Dawning’ in my world then… simply the same old ‘same old’ …with a different hat on 🙂 …


But to continue … …

Or is it perhaps that the various viewpoints that were originally expressed by this authoritative figure here are not so much ‘predictions’, but attempts at ‘Universal Explanations’ that appear to answer – in some way – certain troubling questions that are being asked of society in general. For example, “Why have things changed the way that they have, such that things have now become as they are?”

Because, obviously, if everyone was always OK with the way things are all the time. That is, that their reactions to life in general remained roughly the same – because they have somehow come to believe that they are living in, say, some sort of idyllic neo-conservative paradise (a kind of ‘yogic stupor’) – then as a consequence, nobody would bother paying any real attention to this ‘Authority’ figure at all (other than for their entertainment value) because there would be no real need too.

So, does our Authoritative Figure then put ‘ideas into the head of these people’ such that they come to be believe that things are actually not ‘quite right’ down here. And that, as a consequence of having these ideas planted in their heads, they now find themselves traveling down a road where they never seem to actually arrive at any satisfactory destination.

And thus – because these people experience themselves as now being almost completely ineffective here – they are continuously troubled by varying degrees by ‘guilt’, and so are now in need of ‘regular therapy’, or ‘reassurance’, from their ‘Authority Figure’?


I really do get so fed-up with saying, “I suppose I could be wrong.” … Especially when, most of the time, I don’t happen to believe that I am… … …

Why do I do that!!!!


This ‘authority’ that I see others placing themselves under… That realm (another great word) of dominance; sovereignty; supremacy – the place where we find the expert; the specialist; the aficionado; the guru; the sage… Where exactly is it?


‘Random Dribbling from the Twilight World of the Undead’
by Bob Hardy
(A series of fragments from Bob Hardy’s notebooks – from the late-1970’s to date)


Do those in authority simply present those who come within their sphere of influence with some version or other of a fairy tale … Some meta-narrative that their listeners find satisfying – provided that they don’t actually think about it too much?  Such as … “God made Adam and Eve. But Eve was very naughty, and so we’ve all been screwed up ever since… And because of this, what we now have to do (because it’s ‘The Law’) among lots and lots of other things – is make sure that we don’t shake hands with menstruating females; that we cut off the end of our dicks; and that we don’t eat pigs…”

I would have to admit though that this approach seems to succeed in doing the trick here far more often than it fails…

For some beings it would appear that these accounts come to be viewed as ‘obvious’; to have somehow – by some process or other – become ‘self-evidently true’. Particularly when they are dressed up in an archaic language (which I always think is a particularly stupid viewpoint – as obviously this language was not archaic at the time of it’s original use) ….

‘Precious’, ‘sacred’, ‘holy’, (and the ultimate – ‘actual word of God’) accounts then …

Regrettably perhaps, they aren’t anything of the sort for me. In fact I find almost all of them overwhelmingly obsolete in today’s Western world. That is, although I endorse the value of the ‘cargo’ (as it were) the vehicle being used to transport it is falling to pieces (another cheesy metaphor of mine there 🙂 ) … But I can easily understand why they were the best available at the time… And that also – in their continuing ‘relevance today’, I will say that they do provide a wonderful example of Eugene Halliday’s concept of ‘Inertia’ – which is a far, far, far, more complex concept of his than it at first might appear to be, but perhaps only in my opinion … 


Now might be a good time to share my musings re whether there might actually be some form of ‘natural hierarchy ‘down here. Because, for me hierarchies form an integral part of my concept of ‘Authority’ – and so I find it useful to ‘think hierarchically’ from time to time.

So, from a hierarchical point of view, here’s how I saw Eugene Halliday used a ‘natural hierarchy’ to handle his attempts to Work with ‘others’ … Or how it was that he ‘sorted them out with regard to himself into some sort of order’ might be another way of putting this..

I believe that, in order to Work, Eugene Halliday had a system in place for filtering (sorting out) the scores of people that were attempting to avail themselves of his time, in such a way that these relationships subsequently required little or no excess or wasteful tending to on his part. And that it also made practical use of one of his favorite assertions – ‘Simple does not mean easy’… It was grounded in his insistence that all attempts to gain understanding here must arise out of one’s own actual experiences. (What it is then, that you can actually demonstrate; or have demonstrated in the past; or were required by him to demonstrate in the future; and that you can also provide some sort of cohesive, and coherent,  account of).

Thus, if you were one of those people who were desperate for a sign of recognition from him, and so spent some time putting together one of those (what you imagined were) ‘interesting’ (esoteric/spiritual) questions that would serve to present you in a ‘good light’. You would be very efficiently deflected with a short answer – usually one that involved some form of ‘mystical esoteric’ mumbo-jumbo – such as the ‘mystical meaning’ of various letters of the alphabet (which Eugene Halliday expertly morphed into whatever it was that he wanted any particular letter to mean at this particular time) followed by his advice to ‘do something to demonstrate to yourself that you understand this’ – which in the overwhelming majority of cases here of course the person seeking to involve themselves here never actually got around to doing. He would then finish off here by saying something like, “And do let me know how you got on here please.’ …

Of course the querent here would alway inevitably not realize that this had happened 🙂 .. (That Eugene Halliday had simply given them something – usually extremely straightforward – to actually do, and that their attempts to engage him in further conversation were now contingent upon the fact that had done it!) … which I thought was brilliant!! …

And although this was not the case with those who employed his services ‘by the hour’ so to speak… And in that particular scenario, more complicated events were taking place anyway – notably that (after talking to many of them personally and listening to audio-tapes of these session) in my opinion he not only offered advice to his ‘clients’, but also used these ‘therapy’ situations to Work on himself … An extremely efficient state of affairs then..

I will add here that I never spoke directly with Eugene Halliday at length … ever … … And I only ever asked him one direct question – his answer to which was, “That question was answered 2,000 years ago.”.. (!) .. This was because he seemed to be answering, or have already answered, the ones that I was really interested in during one or other of his previously recorded talks or  essays…I never felt inclined to attempt to engage him in unnecessary social chatter then – particularly as he always seemed to have his hands full as it was; neither did I feel any particular resonance with the overwhelming majority of those who regularly attended ISHVAL either – because most of them just seemed to be involved in playing some form of elaborate social game to me. …

I would add here though that, ten years or so after his death, I did discover one or two people who appeared to me to be grappling with his material, but not nearly as many as I would have expected – at least considering the number of years that many of them spent coming to his talks etc.

Anyway, observing Eugene Halliday employing, what I saw as, his technique of ‘screening’, and coming to realize just how successful it was, I thought it would be a great idea if I attempted to appropriate it for myself 🙂 …

So I did go on to make use of it, but in an entirely different field…

And so i would claim that this particular technique of his now has a very definite experiential component for me. And I must say that – as with other techniques that I believed I observed Eugene Halliday making use of – as soon as I’d tried it for myself for a short time, it seemed a very useful and rather obvious thing to do.

I found that this technique of his was very straightforward – always provided that you could manage to keep focussed on what you were aiming at. But, I repeat, any realization here that you are after will only ever come about after you take the trouble to apply techniques of his like this for yourself, and then reflect upon your experiences with them…

I’ll now try to describe my own particular experience here with this technique, as briefly as I can then. So you can see what I mean

I was always being asked to ‘give piano lessons’.. And although it was very easy money for me, luckily I didn’t need it… And anyway, I actually didn’t like ‘teaching piano’ … at all.

However, I always seemed to have one or two pupils that I would end up seeing ever fortnight or so – which sort of  served to ‘kept me in the market-place’ if you like (I found it paid for my petrol 🙂 …). And as a consequence (because I in fact was ‘out there’) I would be asked now and again by others if I would also give them lessons.

So I realized that I had to devise some way of ‘filtering’ would-be pupils (that most of the other ‘teachers’ in this area would then take on anyway, if only for the money) without offending anyone – if I could possibly manage it.

I should quickly add here that I was always prepared to help someone out if I thought that they were really interested in what I did , and that I thought had what it takes to be any good – but that was not my experience in the main…

My rules here were simple. I would always go to their place. I always had somewhere to go no later than one and a quarter hours after I arrived. And here’s the ‘Halliday bit’ … I would ‘give them a ‘lesson’, and tell them that they would be required to practically demonstrate that they had ‘got it’ the next time that I came… If they hadn’t ‘got it’ then they would receive exactly the same lesson from me again, but would still pay me in full… However, if they wished, they could audio-tape, or video, this ‘second-time through’  so that they would have no excuse for, “not having remembered this, or that, other bit.”…

In order to receive a third lesson though, they would now have to phone me to let me know that they had absorbed that previous one.

Most ‘pupils’ didn’t make it past two lessons – almost invariably because they simply would not put the necessary practice time in; or would claim that they ‘knew it’ but hadn’t quite got round to ‘doing it’ yet; or spent most of their time looking for short-cuts; or were more concerned with devising elaborate motives as to why it was that they, ‘couldn’t ‘do it’…just now.” – usually because they were embarrassed because when they saw me do it, “It looked (relatively) easy.”; or they just told me that, “This is the way I do it.” – in which case I would always reply, “Well obviously you don’t need me to help you then .. do you?”

Or they would be able to do sections of the material that I gave them in the lesson, but not others. In which case they would spend almost all their time on the piano going over and over these bits that they could already do…

In the case of one particular instruction that I always gave them, many had convinced themselves that it was of minor importance – which fascinated me because, although I always went to great pains to explain to them just how important, just how fundamental, it was, they somehow never managed to grasp this fact. And – it seemed to me – to have subsequently programmed themselves to be oblivious (in the absence of someone like me pointing it out – which tended to profoundly irritate them) to what it was that they were (not) doing.. A bit like Eugene Halliday’s rule that interested parties who wanted to ‘do what he was doing’ must ‘activate’ their ‘passive’ language then.

This single instruction from me was very simple – I told them that no matter what they were playing, they had to tap their foot ‘rhythmically in time’ while they did so.

What is even more mysterious here is that, even if I taped what it was they were playing and explained to them, or demonstrated to them, exactly how they were, at the moment, ‘rhythmically all over the place’ they simply refused to ‘have it’ – even if they agreed with me at the time!… But then you might be astonished at just how many so-called ‘professional musicians’ cannot play rhythmically either – and, even more mysteriously perhaps, have been able to get away with it for the whole of their careers!

Most beginners here really believed that they ‘wanted to do something’, but would nearly always convince themselves that what it was that they were doing – after the minimum amount of effort on their part – was ‘near enough’ (“Sounds fine to me, mate!”) And what it was that they couldn’t do, “didn’t really matter.” … They had constructed their own ‘hierarchy’ then, of ‘the relative importance of things that must be done here’…

But playing ‘Rhythm and Blues’ keyboards is, unfortunately for them, not at all simple. (Although the fact that you can program machines to organize sound in this way today has seriously complicated, or obscured, this basic fact… Something I refer to, by the way, as the ‘blow-up doll’ version, if you’re interested).

There is a great deal of preparation that needs to be done, and – as they had requested advice from me – I required them to actually practice what it was that I gave them to do …Being beginners though, they obviously often found it difficult. So most of them quickly gave up on what it was that I required of them, but even so, somehow went on to convince themselves that they were getting somewhere … somehow … And of course, in the privacy of their own heads (where they could exercise their own autonomy – could be their own authority) … they were! 🙂 …

And then, having clobbered together the ability together to perform some bizarre rendition or other here, they ‘moved on’ and joined together (or only ever ‘hung-out’} with others who didn’t know what they were doing either. Who then all went on to re-define the necessary techniques required here, such that – voilà! – they were now ‘recognized experts in the field’.. Which is how I see exactly what Western popular culture has done with Black American Blues music; Brazilian guitar music; and ‘Oriental Martial Arts’, etc., by the way… And also of course any number of non-Western – so to say – ‘esoteric practices’ 🙂  with, of course, the connivence of any number of self-styled non-Western ‘gurus’ and ‘senseis’ who are only intent on traveling geographically in the other direction – usually because they quite fancy having their own little group of European followers (invariably with a pronounced female contingent); owning a BMW; and going to discos … 🙂

Which suited me fine 🙂 …

To provide the briefest of explanations here. People like me who are viscerally affected by music (in my case predominately Black American, or Cuban, or Latin American, music), and that incorporates an essential, pronounced rhythmical component, are first made aware of this pleasurable experience via a pronounced positive feeling towards it in their physical bodies.. (Watch a baby that can’t yet walk, but has learnt to stand move up by using the table or some other piece of furniture, and play them some music from a popular music station on your radio, and you will see exactly what I mean… Music will also effect many domestic animals in this visceral way, by the way – particularly birds)… This pleasurable experience can obviously be re-enforced (you can work out how exactly you would go about doing this for yourself I hope). But, far more importantly here, it can also, at some point, be reproduced by the (originally ‘passive’) being who is having this experience. And acquiring this ability subsequently provides this being with a potentially ‘autonomous’ (interesting word) experience. However, in order to possess this autonomy, the means of doing so has to be acquired by Working, in order to gain that necessary ‘active’ technique(s)…

The only component of this technique that is present in the beginning here though is that ‘physical response’ I mentioned – which is always in the form of a repetitive physical movement (clue)… The student therefore must ‘work backwards’ as it were, from this already present physical ability (this innate response if you like) until they can ‘organize sound’ cognitively… At which point this ‘organizing ability , can now be used to ‘move outwards’ again, back into the body. The being can now, as it were, do two things at once! To put it simply, it can now ‘perform for its own enjoyment’… The cognitive component (the understanding of what it is they are doing); the emotional component (that ‘guide’, which gives them that rational aesthetic experience necessary to the inputting of more ‘feeling’ – of ‘yes’ or ‘no’) and the physical component (that response of their own bodies to their own efforts) are now co-ordinated – are now balanced – such that the being can now truly claim to be ‘rhythmical’, and not simply ‘know what rhythmical music is when they hear it’ or just be able to maintain that ‘they quite like it’…

So my instructions to beginners was never about me wanting to get them to just ‘tap their feet’, but to actually ‘involve their feet’ …. rhythmically!  – But I could never tell them that in the beginning because they wouldn’t ‘get it’ at all! Or even worse they might think they did!..

I will just add here that the overwhelming majority of males (at least the one’s that I know) don’t think it’s odd that, if they ask a girl to dance, then she can just sort of ‘fit in’ with what they were doing.. I, on the other hand, have always thought this ability was quite magical, and believed that I would really be getting somewhere if I could do something like that.. (Now you’ll either see the earth-shattering importance of my Working on this, or you won’t 🙂 ..) 

I would just add that the number of those who claimed to be ‘musical’ (you can substitute ‘yoga experts’ here) that attended Eugene Halliday’s meetings who were clearly ‘not rhythmical’, was extra-ordinary!! … And I will also add that I can tell if someone is rhythmical or not immediately – which some of you might find a bit spooky…

Why is all this so very important as far as I’m concerned, you might ask? Well, other than to say it is pertinent to all this (to say the least) I’m not going to tell you. Because if you can’t work out why for yourself (and relatively quickly), then- for the moment at least – you will never understand any of all this really anyway… Which isn’t to say that you might not ‘know’ a lot about ‘all this’ though – but that’s not the same thing at all… is it?  🙂

Had, though, I been ‘touting for business’; or I needed to ‘make a few bob’; or if I’d ‘wanted a reputation’; or if I was after ‘my own little gang of followers’, I would – of course – have gone about things in an entirely different manner. And would probably have started my ‘pupils’ (aKa ‘my flock’) off, by getting them to ‘playing the scale of C with one hand in one octave’ or something equally as useless, and then gone on for over 50 lessons or so, to ‘teach’ them lots of other irrelevant stuff – and eventually… Who knows? They may be able to remember so much of this stuff that they could even go on to become ‘teachers’ themselves… … … A bit like being one of those ‘yoga teachers’ then; or ‘Martial Artists’ who couldn’t fight their way out of a wet Echo …   🙂


Back to the concept of ‘inertia’ for a moment …

To get a real hold on what Eugene Halliday’s concept of ‘inertia’ is about, I believe you must ground this word in your own experiences.

And, in attempting to throw some light on your own … ‘intertic tendencies’, I would advise you to beware of ‘amateur therapists’

Because if you do indulge in this form of relationship, understand clearly that it will be that ‘therapist’ who controls and oversees the ‘active’ component of this aspect of it, of this aspect your life. And it is they who will have been allowed by you to assume real ‘authority’ here. Because they will now be in charge of dictating that script that you both subsequently engage in, in the process of acting out this relationship – and in which you will always play the role of the ‘passive’ partner ..(Try and unpack the phrase, “I’m in therapy,” in terms of it’s hierarchy, and then ask yourself the question, “Will there ever be a time when I will assume the ‘active role’ here, or does a successful ‘course of therapy’ automatically assume that any relationship here (which by its very nature is ‘intimate’) will be terminated . And your analyst and you will then both move on with your ‘proper lives’?)

Your enjoyment of these ‘sessions’ will almost certainly be, in the main, because you imagine that this person is taking a’real’ interested in you, and so you feel yourself to be the center of attention (if only for a very short time, and for which you do pay for, one way or another) … Regrettably though they are far more likely to be indulging in their desire for power in relationships, and ‘you’ could just as easily be ‘anyone’… Although – and this I do find fascinating – they actually probably imagine that they are doing something else entirely!

How it is that you do put that story of your past together (and not someone else for you – although it’s possible for you to receive help here) is crucial to this understanding of inertia for you, by the way…. And if you do happen to come to any understanding here of this ‘past’, you then need to do what it was that Eugene Halliday insists you do, which is to change it … Not the events themselves, but whether you experience them ‘in the now’ as  ‘actively’ and not ‘passively’, and in my opinion this is really very hard Work.


When Eugene Halliday was formulating ideas and promoting his concepts to groups of interested listeners (such that many even came to view him as almost infallible) – what, back then, was actually going on? … What changes were taking place in those who were subsequently turned into ‘subjects’ here? What is it that they ‘relinquished’ (or ‘appropriated’) – if anything? …

Or did he plant these ideas of his in ‘virgin ground’? …. That is, was a seductive picture of reality painted by Eugene Halliday for those who didn’t already have one of their own; or who didn’t like (or didn’t feel satisfied) with the the one that they already had, or the one that was imposed on them as children?…

Was it, in the end then, only ever really about satisfying appetites? … Some form of processed ‘mental food’, so to speak and (here’s a thought) possible (like the ingestion of mercury or lead in small does over a long period) highly toxic?

Was this all because he was so convincing (so seductive)? … But if he was, why is it that almost nobody that claims to have a ‘special’ connection to him can give a substantial, coherent, account of what it was that he was forever going on about? … And even if they ‘sort-of’ can, why is it that these people seem unable to suggest any method of proceeding with this account of his, such that it demonstrates that these accounts were, indeed, ‘Authoritative’ – rather than them simply being ‘transfixed in the moment’ by his rhetorical skill – hypnotized almost – and thus unable to provide an explanation as to why it was that the overwhelming majority who went to hear him speak for years on end, only appear to have the vaguest of ideas about the substance of what it was that he actually said … Any possible aid for them (if any) contained in his many talks having evaporated almost completely (and often almost immediately) after he had finished speaking… Sort of like seeds falling on the ground, sprouting far too early, growing too quickly and then being killed by the sun and lack of water? .. If, that is, you quite like the idea of referring to his creative output as ‘containing seeds’ … 🙂

Is this a common phenomena? … This inability to retain something seen and heard that – at the time – produced a significant affect (gasps of mutual admiration and agreement)… I would argue that it’s a lot more common than you might think….

Here’s an example of this inability to remember fairly succinct ideas from another area of peoples lives, that I would claim almost everyone is familiar with…. Although it’s not very ‘witchy-poo’ I’m afraid.

That comedian on TV the other night you laughed at almost continually until you were crying so hard that you could hardly breath – because the jokes were so very, very, funny… … All those marvelous jokes that you couldn’t remember the next day … !

Notice that you are liable to have slightly better recall though if you were watching a funny sit-com   .. Because, even though you were still passively watching here, you can still find it relatively easy to recall a ‘direction’ to the situation(s) presented to you (the particular ‘story-line’ in that particular episode last night) to the extent that is necessary here… And that you can subsequently, therefore, still ‘identify with ‘ – or ‘take part in’… That story (that fantasy) containing those events portrayed, such that you can re-run them the next day for yourself ‘in your mind’ if you wish .. These events – because they are in the form of a narrative – that you can, with far more ease, dredge up from your memory, along with the recall of that pleasurable state you experienced… It’s humorous aspect then …

And particularly so if you are relating this episode next day to someone else, say a friend, (“And then what happened was … Oh! It was really funny! …”) …

So, although these events did not constitute an actual lived (experiential) situation for you, this sit-com – in an imaginative sense at least – was still somehow ‘real’ for you … You ‘took part’ in it in such a way that it was memorized as an ‘experience’ of sorts… In the same way that you identify with that image you have created for yourself and others – only in this case you do believe it.

… I see all this as evidence for my view of beings possessing both ‘authentic’ and ‘genuine’ aspects of this being etc. … And which I believe I have provided ample information about in previous posts here … So I won’t be repeating myself on that subject here yet again – you’ll be glad to hear 🙂


In my own case I was always acutely aware that I did not wholeheartedly totally accept Eugene Halliday’s particular perception of reality… But what his public expressions of this perception of his (both verbal and written) certainly did for me, was to make me realize that it was possible for any individual to construct their own view here (as he had done) by the process of attempting to embody some major concept(s) or other that they had adopted, and then Working through the consequences of doing so…. For example, by maintaining that – “If I have come to the conclusion that this is the way things came to be; then why is this now happening?” …(Because, say, if my view was correct, then it shouldn’t be happening) …

So then, I don’t believe that this attempt by Eugene Halliday to ‘make sense of it all’ was in any way ‘magical’ or ‘occult’ – as his own material appears to me to proceed directly from the particular overview he gained as a result of his various studies, particularly in the areas of pre-1900’s philosophy; science; and also his interpretations of various religious texts.

The most obvious concepts here would include those of field forces; energy; and consciousness.. Thus I don’t accept that Eugene Halliday was carrying on the tradition of keeping some ‘Perennial Philosophy’ going (an idea that I find, frankly, ridiculous), Rather, and far more importantly for me, I believe – for me at least – that he was demonstrating, in act (‘before my very eyes’ that is) – a perennial truth – which is that we can create our own world. And that this might, or might not, involve any particular philosophy, or set of beliefs, whatsoever..

Which is a far more magical thing to demonstrate than merely just the trotting out of mechanical, second-hand ideas… And which also explains to me why it is that I believe so many down here seem to have only ever succeeded in getting themselves stuck ‘right in it’.

‘Random Dribbling from the Twilight World of the Undead’
by Bob Hardy
(A series of fragments from Bob Hardy’s notebooks – from the late-1970’s to date)


(We see him sitting at his desk, his jacket is over the back of his chair, his tie has been loosened and the top button of his shirt is open. He is speaking into an old-fashioned dictaphone, and he looks somewhat tired)

“The proof that there must be some hidden ‘secret truth’ in all this, seems to be based entirely on their readiness to admit that they have not – as yet – been able to find any evidence of its existence!

“This tool, this ‘language’ that they all possess… That they create their texts from … Many of them seem to believe – and spend much of their life looking for – particularly in the case of those ‘Sacred Texts’ that so many of them are so fond of … something … some hidden message …. that someone, or some thing, or some agency .. has left behind …

And so much effort is then expended by them in tasks such as – for example – re-combining various fragments of these texts, or substituting different vowels to the words in these texts – in order to discover this ‘secret message’ …

This pursuit of theirs is referred to by them in many ways …. (He pauses).. ‘Occult interpretation’, for example .. or ‘Divine Revelation’. …. But of course they aren’t uncovering any such message at all… What they are actually doing, is creating entirely new texts, with entirely new meanings here, that were very often obviously not even implied in the original text…  (He pauses) … An act of creation then!!

And so it is obviously always possible for them to experience that joy which any creative act induces … (He carries on immediately, his voice rising).. But of course, in almost all cases here, that’s not what happens to them at all!

They instead become obsessed with the idea that they have found a ‘hidden, or secret, truth’ within this text, and will often spend the remainder of their time here attempting to prove this to others (He pauses and stares at the floor before continuing very softly)As if that was what really mattered in all this…(His voice rises)… At all!!”

 Fragment from
‘ Field-notes for Armageddon’ by Bob Hardy


I have never been much of a fan of the, “I am weak but thou art strong,” view-point at least when it comes to understanding ‘Authority’… But I do fully appreciate that if one is really in need at various times in one’s life – when say, really dreadful personal things are happening – then crying out for guidance etc. seems to me to be a very normal, and very human, thing to do. … But not for every second of your existence!

Do we really have to ask for help from Jesus to decide what clothes to wear; what washing powder to buy; or whether or not ‘to take the car to the shops, or just walk instead’? …. 

So why not take some time out to realize just what it is that you are actually capable of  being responsible for…

‘Random Dribbling from the Twilight World of the Undead’
by Bob Hardy
(A series of fragments from Bob Hardy’s notebooks – from the late-1970’s to date)


Someone stands up on a box in the middle of Times Square, or Piccadilly Circus, and proclaims to anyone unlucky to be within earshot that they are ‘Representing The Supreme Authority’… But no one takes any notice of them…

What sorts of things would have to subsequently take place here for these ‘self-proclaimers’  to – as a direct consequence – be believed? …

A demonstration of ‘supernatural powers’ perhaps? (Always guaranteed to grab the attention of the ‘Great Unwashed’) …

In your case though, this demonstration of ‘supernatural powers’ would have to be witnessed by you first-hand; or delivered to you in an account that was relayed to you by: a) Someone you ‘trust’; or b) Your favorite news outlet; etc. etc. before you believed it … surely?

(I believe that formulating questions like this are a very important aid in ‘getting to know one’s self’)..

It’s far easier to answer the following question though, “How does it come about that ‘the police’ have authority?” … And that’s part of the trouble here… The answer that you would give to this question, in practical terms at least explains every other instance (excluding the ‘brute force’ one) where it concerns anyone else’s particular attempt to claim, or to assume, power… It crucially requires an investment on the part of you and others here – that you all agree to ‘recognize’ this position of power.

To repeat… How does it come to be that one person comes to have authority over another; or that one person comes to have authority over many; or that one group of people have authority over another group of people? … Lots of questions here then, that can lead to the investigation of all sorts of useful words to Work on (in that attempt of yours to acquire an ‘active language’) – such as, for example, ‘subject’; ‘subjective’, and so on; and thus: ‘object’; ‘objective’ etc..

I’ll just mention here once again that in the past I did spend a considerable amount of time Working with the words ‘authentic’ (which shares the same root as ‘authority”; and also ‘genuine’ (which shares the same root as General (in the military sense)… Because I was interesting in discovering what sorts of things contribute to the creation of what ultimately becomes both: a) ‘An Authoritative Text’  and b) – where it concerns a person – ‘An Authority’. But, in this latter case, not in the collective social sense (as in the case of say, a member of the judiciary) but rather in the ‘single-person sense’ (if I can put it that way).

Thus – in this sense at least – I would claim that Eugene Halliday ‘possessed authority’ … He, for example, made use of the ‘royal ‘We’..’ when referring to activities of the collective membership of Ishval – the most innocent use of this ‘We’ then, might be that everyone there was being reinforced with the notion that – where it concerned be particular little snippet that was being mentioned at that particular time – everybody was ‘on the same page’. And so no need to ‘ponder that particular snippet’ then … So an ‘authodoxy’ then … (Same root as ‘authority, by the way 🙂 …)

NOTE: A great exercise here, is for you to first of all explore how ‘accepting authority’ has been responsible – even if it is only in part – for you engaging in any number of activities that has been formulated by others… And when you’ve done that (so that, hopefully, you now appreciate how this happens in your own case) why not then try a much harder exercise, and try to recall if there has ever been any activity on your part that you can confidently claim was not a consequence of you engaging in activity that had not – in part at least – been formulated by others… And if you manage that one, then why not try going on to the really hard exercise here –  Imagining what engaging in activity that has not been formulated – in part at least – by others could actually mean .. 


“And the real value of empathic relationships – as opposed to those self-congratulatory bouts of compassion that they’re so fond of wallowing in? .. Well of course there is always that possibility that these empathic relationships can be reciprocated … and also, that not only can they be with the ‘other’ in the way that the ‘other’ is experiencing the world; but the relationship can be such that it allows them to imagine what the ‘other’ would do if they were faced with the same situation that they were in… … That is, they can use empathy … the ‘other’ … to help free themselves from their own particular problem … But very, very, few of them ever manage to realize this..(He pauses) … And usually these abilities … ’empathy’ and ‘compassion’ … are only ever brought up by them in order to demonstrate to themselves and others just how … how … understanding … and thus clever … they are.. Which of course they imagine now places them further up that ‘spiritual pecking order’ of theirs… gives them more ‘authority’ (He pauses and grins) … But really all that’s going on here is that they are addicted to thinking of themselves as … caring deeply …. Whenever they can … Hence their addiction to what they like to call, ‘The News’ by the way…

 Fragment from
‘ Field-notes for Armageddon’ by Bob Hardy


Briefly – Of the less than half-dozen or so concepts of Eugene Halliday’s that I have actually seriously Worked with (something that I quickly came to appreciate takes, for me at least, a very long time to get into) the following two have probably been the most important for me, with the exception of a number of  concepts that are contained in his ‘Tacit Conspiracy’ essay that is 🙂 … (But the elaboration by me of these particular concepts would, I believe, require me to write at least another half-a-dozen or so posts. And, for the moment at least, that constitutes a big ‘no-no’, I’m afraid) …

So just the two here then:

 1: ‘Working’ – as a way to activate your language.

If you have read my previous posts you will hopefully already appreciate that, in my experience at least, the approach that I originally took in order to tackle the problem of Working was not nearly as straightforward as I first thought it was going to be. Because I soon discovered that if I was ever going to get anything to ‘stick’ here – notably in order to be able to ‘develop that potential in being’ (Which, thankfully, didn’t necessarily require me to be nice to everybody all the time, or anything even remotely like that) – I had to subsequently involve what I believed were the various ‘fruits of my labors here’ into appropriate, customized, forms of praxis  … So ‘Walking the walk’, I quickly realized, was essential here then; as opposed to merely ‘Talking the talk’ … you might say.

As a positive consequence of this approach though, I would add that – if my experiences here are anything to go by at least – you can reasonably expect to be able to ditch at least 99% of those you come across who claim to be involved, or interested, in ‘Matters Halliday ‘ here – as the overwhelming majority of them are ‘into’ these matters for entirely different motives. This hard-line approach by you might – in the short term at least –  prove to be somewhat disappointing, but does have an extremely positive aspect, in that it illuminates just how difficult this view of Working’ of mine, is, and it also helps to keep you at it when the going gets tough’

Incidentally (if you’re interested in these sorts of things) this active/passive language concept of Eugene Halliday’s is, in my opinion, something very like Gurdjieff’s ‘Law of Three’. The third part of which (Gurdjieff’s ‘Neutralizing Force’) I came to see as very similar to my own way of looking at this (or so I like to think). That is – in my case – Gurdjieff’s term here – ‘neutralizing’ – was experienced by me, as my having ‘achieved a state of temporary balance that now enabled me to move forward’… So I don’t actually experience the results of Working as ‘Neutralizing’ anything: instead I experience a momentary state of ‘dynamic balance’ – which is, rather obviously I suppose, why I came to use the term ‘balance’ here.

NOTE – ‘Eugene Halliday – Lesson 101’: Changing a function (think of this as what it or what you actually do) changes a form.. Which – as a consequence – now requires those of us who are Working to provide a different label/word that we can then subsequently use in order to express more clearly the differentiated personal meanings/experiences that have arisen here .. So again, not ‘neutralizing’ for me then, but rather ‘balancing’. ..

So, in my case then, immediately upon a successful attempt at Working to transform something ‘passive’ (experienced as resistance to change, or inertia, or to engramic dispositions, or whatever term you like to use here)  into ‘active’ (assertive – now able to be used to push here), this instantaneously brings into being a state of balance that requires a movement ‘forward’ (at the very moment ‘the penny drops’ here, as it were); or you might like to say that it occasions a movement ‘upward’ – if you’re a fan of Gurdjieff’s metaphor here.

Or, to put this yet another way, more ‘power’ is now available to you – or more means  of ‘screwing things up’ are now at your disposal  🙂

This new situation that you see yourself in – which, you like to believe is as a direct consequence of your efforts here – enables you to (we might say for the time being) ‘now see things with a bit more clarity’… And you begin to notice that ‘being presented with a new experience’ is something that only ever happens to the overwhelming majority of people when they barge into something that was directly in their path; that they failed to see right under their very noses, even though it came complete with a great big flashing neon sign attached to it that was notifying them of the fact… And which is then, as a consequence, almost invariably – in their eyes at least – experienced as something that is ‘definitely not required’: or – if they like to imagine themselves as being more ‘refined’ – as ‘rather inconvenient at the moment’…. Because of course it might wake them up!

This ‘new’ situation (And by ‘new’ here I don’t mean something like ‘original’ or ‘unique’ by the way… I use ‘new situation” here to simply mean the ‘most recent situation’… So it could be one – in fact it probably will be – that has happened to you many times before – only you just didn’t notice the last twenty-five or so times that it did, because you were probably too busy fiddling with yourself)… Anyway this ‘new’ situation is one that you find will now immediately present you with yet more of your very own passive stuff. That you – once again – are required to Work on, by shoving actively against it with more of your active stuff; until once again you achieve a state of balance that impels you to, once again, move forward …

That, by the way, is what the ‘Time Process’ is all about for me. And why I experience many other people as somehow ‘being stuck’ here… Because even though they might be ‘changing’ – that is, growing more wrinkly by the day almost –  they’re not ‘transforming’… A different word again, do you see? With a different form then, and so it possesses a different function… etc. etc.

And what do you go on to do next? … “What’s the aim here of all this?” …Or, “Get to the point will you, I’m very busy!” you might say. Well, essentially, you keep on repeating this process until you die … That’s really what it’s all about down here for me… And the endlessly pursuit of ‘enjoyment’ or whatever it is that most people get up to? …. I’d prefer to leave that to our cat, ‘Juke’ because, to me, that’s all he ever seems to want to do – no ‘post-industrial 20th-century existential angst, as a consequence of living through the present phase of free-market capitalism’, or ‘gender confusion’ for him!!! …

NOTE: I’ve mentioned Gurdjieff here, because I think it’s about time that I ‘came out’ and made it clear that there were any number of beings about in the 20th century that I found very helpful to me. And I am not, and have never been, simply a ‘follower’ or a ‘pupil’ of any one particular person. I have rather (very deliberately) tried to take only what I believed that I needed – no more or no less – from wherever I happened to find it, in order to continue Working. And look – many of Gurdjieff’s ideas – such as ‘The Enneagram’; or his stuff about ‘rays’ and  ’emanations’; or ‘feeding the moon’; or ‘hydrogens’, were not really up to much in my opinion. But in the end all this really means is I didn’t find them useful to me… I have also found a great deal of material that was produced by Idries Shah to be useful to me  – but again, by no means all of it.

FURTHER NOTE: You might also find the following of relevance here: Of all the people that I interviewed extensively re Eugene Halliday, the person that had known him the longest by far (from the very early 1940’s in fact) was Donald Lord. And one of the things that interested me greatly in this account to me of his, was his insistence that “Eugene Halliday was NOT a teacher.”  … !
I had spent ten years of my life as a qualified lecturer (I mention this here only so that you can appreciate that I believed I knew what ‘teaching’ and ‘being a teacher’ was all about), and I found myself agreeing with Donald Lord’s, comments here. But as I’d never really thought about Eugene Halliday’s talks in this way until he mentioned this – I had never really ‘formulated’ what it was that Eugene Halliday was doing and, if he wasn’t teaching .. then what was he doing?”
Very soon after, I was discussing this with close friend of mine, and he immediately gave me a copy of this document below. And a great deal of what it was that Eugene Halliday was doing immediately became very much clearer….
You might like to read it – it’s not that long at all… It was put together by someone from a completely different culture almost 700 years ago, and it contained exactly what I needed here, because it very succinctly nails for me much (but by no means all) of what I had already intuited that ‘teachers’ and ‘teaching’ is really about.
Here it is: The Counsels of Bahaudin Naqshband ….. and it served to re-enforce my belief that those who were listening to Eugene Halliday giving his talks in the ‘right way’, were able to observe him ‘in the act’ of Working, as it were; and also why it’s an almost complete waste of time to just try and ‘learn’ or ‘remember’ these talks – particularly so if you have no real intention of Working yourself – but are simply trying to copy him.
If you like, it’s more the case that he’s demonstrating what it is that he ‘does’ (so you know then that something like this can actually be done) in order to encourage you to put together a system of your own so that you will be able to do it… for yourself .. So imitating Eugene Halliday’s hair-style hasn’t really got anything to do with it… Has it?

Incidentally, that concept of Gurdjieff’s (his ‘Law of Three’) was around long before Eugene Halliday’s ideas re Working to activate one’s language. And I wouldn’t be at all surprised if Eugene Halliday used this law to kick-start his own particular experiential approach to this subject of Working… Involving Gurdjieff’s methods into his own ideas re language then, which was a mode of praxis here that immediately appealed far more to me in that I felt I was far more able to involve myself in Eugene Halliday’s method, than involve myself in what I took to be Gurdjieff’s methods here – which often seemed to involve physically doing something – like deciding to remain standing all day, and then watching ‘what came up as a consequence’.

And this is actually what I eventually did with Eugene Halliday’s suggestion that we develop our own active language  … I customized what I took to be his way of doing things here and went on to construct a system that worked for me. And it seems to me that anyone who does actually do any Work automatically has to go on – from the ‘hand-up’ that they have been freely given here from other beings – and develop their own particular method(s)… Understand here that I’m not talking about ‘principles’ – although to others, you might seem to be expressing these in such a completely different way to the one that they’ve become passively used to hearing, that you appear to be talking about something else entirely. I’m talking about the fact that you will never know any of this unless you do it yourself, unless it is you. If you persist otherwise, you will simply jump from one thing to another as it takes your fancy. So, in short then, I believe that we must all write our own accounts here based on our own experiences.

So re ‘passive and active’ language then – ‘In the beginning was the Word’ – and after that, it seems to me, there was then a whole lot more ‘words’. So many of them in fact that we’ve been drowning in them ever since…

And what is it that you will be required to do when you’ve ‘heard’ these ‘words’? … Well … Work!

And the good news here is that we can already – every single one of us – actually ‘hear’ the words that we need to hear in order to progress at every moment of our lives – should we chose to stop for a moment and listen…But then we would have to go on to spend some of our time (initially at least) figuring out the consequences of what it is that our own unique particular ‘message’ requires us to do down here. Which will certainly be – we already suspect – something ‘real’ … and very possibly extremely inconvenient..

A dangerous situation to put yourself in that – at least according to Jacob Boehme… Because if you come to see, with any clarity, what it is that you need do..  And then you don’t do it… Well! …. That’s a whole different ball-game now isn’t it? … Because you’ve run out of excuses, and can’t claim any more that you, “Didn’t really know,” or that you, “Made a mistake, and you’re sorry.” etc… A situation that explains for me why it is that so many of those I have seen ‘searching for the truth’ sooner (rather than later) went on to engage in all sorts of fashionable ‘irrational behavior’ – which invariably seemed to involve (for us Westerners – at least at the present stage of the current zeitgeist) the attempt to emulate one form or other of dimly understood – and hence ‘seductive’ (“It’s all about the make-up and stage lighting folks!”) – exotic ‘Oriental’ practice or other.

So if you do start to Work – be careful, because you will end up getting exactly what you asked for, which will almost certainly be something that – in the moment – you’re not going to particularly ‘enjoy’… One reason for this by the way, might be that, at the moment, you have no real idea what the word ‘enjoy’ actually means. In fact I would be prepared to wager that you will almost certainly have conflated this word with the word ‘pleasure’ …And I would also guess then, that you have never Worked on either of these words … So … If you’d like to start Working … right now … then simply form a sentence about one of your previous experiences with some form of the word ‘enjoy’ in it, and then substitute some form of the word ‘pleasure’ for it – and then ask yourself if these two sentences really mean anything different to you. If they don’t, then obviously you don’t really know what either of these words mean… Do you? .. … And by the way I did just use the world ‘simply’ here, and not ‘easy’… …. … … And that’s all the help you’re going to get from me here 🙂

And I know that I probably doesn’t need to make this point – but I suspect that I haven’t actually put it as straightforwardly as this so I’ll like to take the opportunity to do so now … … To be passive to someone else’s active language is not the same thing at all as being receptive to it… I know – it’s obvious, if you bother to think about it at all.. You’d be surprised though how many folks I’ve met who pretend they’re being receptive when actually they’re being passive – but that’s probably due to the company I keep 🙂


Most of the people I have spoken with directly about Eugene Halliday’s concept of ‘Active and Passive language’ – particularly when I first began here in 2004 (and this would be mostly those who liked to think of themselves as one of his ‘Friends’) do not seem to have ever heard of it. Or if they had, then they clearly though that it was only of minor importance; or that his advice re acquiring this ‘Active’ language of theirs was merely a ‘polite suggestion’.

The majority of those who did present themselves as being somehow familiar with this concept of his appeared to me to be very confused as to what the point of it was; and that ‘looking up the definition’ or ‘researching the etymology’ of a word, and then attempting to commit this information to memory, was pretty much it – rather like a superior form of that Reader’s Digest’ page – ‘Increase Your Word-Power’ then… Or – by far the commonest form of this confusion here – mistaking the acquiring an ‘Active’ language for that of acquiring an ‘Effective’ language – of acquiring a skill then (something like ‘being a better bridge player’) – so that one will now be a more effective member of that debating team; or will be able to ‘slither’ far more effectively by becoming an even more effective ‘smart-assed ale-house lawyer’ …

‘Effective’ language is not the same thing at all as ‘Active’ language.. ‘Effective’ language though, does have many very positive applications, as when, for instance, it is used by a decent teacher  – one you remember from your time at school as being ‘good’; negatively, it is used by any number of fashionable New-Age ‘gurus’ and ‘spiritual superstars’; by rabble-rousing politicians, and various other slime-balls – who invariably always seem to have a way of saying things that you ‘like’ – just before you are encouraged to endorse them, or to part with your money and buy something – such as a car bumper-sticker – replete with that asinine. pithy, witty ‘saying’ that you ‘quite like’; or the latest, fashionable ‘Mediation DVD’; or even to just get you to ‘spend your vote wisely’ …!…

By the way, if you experience moments, whilst you were, say, listening to your favorite speaker, when they appeared to have answered a question that was ‘just at that moment on your mind’, then this is almost certainly because they are using ‘effective Language’ and (I know you’re going to be disappointed now) they are certainly not ‘telepathically and sensitively ‘tuning in’ to you’ .. It’s just another example of ‘Cold Reading’ (a technique that was employed in the past by music-hall magicians, and is still being used today in a far more clearly understood and sophisticated form by all those ‘TV Psychics’ and the like, if you want to look it up)…

In my experience, the sign of being in the presence of a real ‘active-language speaker’ is to make me feel vaguely uncomfortable – rather as if I’ve just been caught in the beam of a headlamp taking a pee at the side of the road . …

I believe that Eugene Halliday could affectively make use of both modes of address – which has always been something of a problem for me… One that is usually mediated by reflecting on his essay ‘Defense of the Devil’… but not always… And I would say that this was due to his ‘Mercurial nature’, if you were insisting on me being polite about this, that is…


All you ever wanted to know about it, but were too afraid to ask

Conflating, or confusing the function of two separate (although not perhaps entirely independent) terms is one of the more interesting ways in which commonly understood meanings can be manipulated by both secular and religious authorities. in order to control the discourse.

The following example is interesting because there is a strong sense in which it is possible to view this conflating and confusing (over the past two thousand years or so – at least up until the latter part of the twentieth century, when it does become pretty much indefensible) as ‘understandable’, or at least ‘non-deliberate’ … I believe that it is now necessary for all you folks out there to separate out these two terms – always assuming of course that you haven’t already done so 🙂

Here you are then – ‘Sexual activity’ and ‘Genital activity’.  

The conflating and confusing of these two terms has, I believe, been directly responsible for, or underlies, the appearance of a large number of – possibly more than any other single human activity – many of those social and cultural mores that have been put into place during the previous couple of thousand years in order to keep ‘the great unwashed’ in-line; and consequently then for all sorts of weird and wonderful patterns of behavior (‘customs’) that have been practiced down here ever since, at least in the ‘West, ‘and much of the Middle East, that is.

These would include (but not be restricted to) for example, your common-or-garden genital mutilation – by which I mean circumcision. That is: the removal of the female clitoris, or the male foreskin  (the latter being a practice that is, even today, claimed by some to be ‘hygienic’ – though not the former); together with the Pauline attitude (shoved down our throats of many of us from about the age of seven) regarding the whole business of guys ‘spilling their seed on the ground’ (or if you don’t know what that means, for a more contemporary way of putting this, try ‘chucking one over the wrist’ ), of ‘fiddling about with yourself down there’ and as a direct consequence, very quickly becoming blind, or at very least extremely short-sighted, or growing hairy palms… ‘Tipping the velvet’ was not so much disapproved of in our mainly patriarchal societies here in the West though, perhaps because the guys in charge were never quite sure what the girls were up to in general, and anyway they quite enjoyed watching.

I’ve often wondered just how many post-pubescent boys and girls would agree to ‘have it done’ today … I can just imagine the scene (Teenage boy or girl on computer video link to pal), “Sorry, I can’t go to the disco with you on Saturday because I’m having the end of my dick cut off (or my clitoris sandpapered away)… I know – it’s a bit of a bummer – but my mum and dad would be upset if I didn’t get it done!” …

By the way, there was a far more severe form of this that was practiced by a significant number of the so-called ‘early church fathers’  … That of self-castration… And let’s not forget the present day form of this – that of (a largely pretend, or alas often tragic) ‘celibacy’ – which is claimed to be practiced by officials of some of the same organizations… 

Simply put, ‘Sexual Activity’ (where it concerns human beings (as opposed to say all those trillions of little creatures – viruses, bacteria, and single-celled things etc – that are hanging around inside your body, who don’t engage in this activity because they can’t, and so are ‘asexual’ – which means ‘non-sexual’) is the combination of genetic material from two donors  – one ‘male’ and one ‘female’ – in order to introduce a new member of the species to this wonderful world. (NOTE: ‘Asexual Activity’ is strictly a ‘go it alone, do-it-yourself’ affair then).

And I think it’s obvious in this ‘sexual’ arrangement that most females were (and are) far more acutely aware of this state of affairs than men – who, even if they insist that what they’re really doing when ‘having sex’ is ‘reproducing’ (as opposed to say, having a great time) would not be believed by anyone (even themselves)…

But then along came ‘the pill’ .. which was then followed by even more interesting developments here! One result of which was that females can now do all this reproducing without the ‘help’ of men or, to be more precise, without any of that old-fashioned bonking taking place – by simply submitting to an IVF procedure at their local IVF clinic. In fact I can remember when, as a result of this procedure, hysterical lesbians were out there proclaiming that ‘woman no longer needed nasty horrible men’…

Unfortunately for the lesbians however, I’m afraid that further advances in science are also now threatening the ‘exclusive’ role of the female here. Because eggs can now be fertilized outside of the womb… And just how long do you think it will be before we can conduct this whole messy reproduction process, this ‘sexual activity’ some place else entirely’? … (You can actually see a move towards the acceptance of this way of couples combining their genetic material with the present day use by those who can afford it, and have left it a bit late perhaps, of surrogate mums).

‘Genital Activity’ – on the other hand – need have absolutely nothing whatsoever to do with ‘Sexual Activity’ at all! … Which – although it was always was the case – was never quite clear, due to its ‘reproductive’ aspect. 

‘Genital Activity’ always involves an erotic charge. So if any idea, or any suggested activity, doesn’t turn you on, then (for the guys say) there’s no hope of ‘the little soldier standing to attention’.. and thus no possibility of any ‘Genital Activity’ taking place.

‘Sexual activity’ and ‘genital activity’ are for me, two very obviously different activities, primarily because they are obviously two completely different terms… In fact I would call one of them largely ‘active’ and the other largely ‘passive’ or ‘receptive’. However, exactly in what circumstances I did so, would depend entirely upon what mood you happened to catch me in at the time 🙂

Exactly where all this concerns the edicts of all those ‘World Religions’ and ‘right’ and ‘left’ wing political ideologies is at the moment extremely ‘muddled’ … Basically because those involved are stupid.

But when the dust settles, where, and why. will all this leave the subjects of reproductive rights and gay rights in a hundred or so years?  … I for one would love to know 🙂

Expanded from a number of entries contained in ‘NOCTURNAL EMISSIONS’
‘Random Dribbling from the Twilight World of the Undead’
by Bob Hardy
(A series of fragments from Bob Hardy’s notebooks – from the late-1970’s to date)


2: ‘Reflexive Self-Consciousness’.

A concept that is – at least in my experience of speaking about it with others –  invariably conflated with something like ‘Heightened Self-Awareness’… … Not the same thing… at all! … But it does go a long way to explain why it is that so many I initially met here ‘went on’ to engage in one version or another of fashionable  ‘non-Occidental’ practice or other (the more exotic the better); or indulge in some form or other of what they claim is a ‘creative’ or ‘artistic’ activity, and so still ‘failed to get it’. Because if you can’t see that there very could easily be an army of ‘ordinary housewives’ out there who, even though they’ve never heard of Mr Halliday or ever done ‘yoga’, are far more reflexively self-conscious than anyone you could ever imagine – then you’ve missed the point of all this entirely…Thinking of smelly fishermen, tax-collectors, and ladies of the night, might help you though – if you’re having a problem here.

On the other hand, I do fully appreciate that engaging in these practices can be beneficial, at least in helping to keeping the lid on one variety or other of rather common Western neurotic condition – such as ‘Post-Industrial Existential Angst’, or ‘An Irrational Middle-Class Fear of the Great Unwashed’ for example. However, all that these activities seem to be to me, are merely yet another form of (‘natural’) self-medication… And although engaging in them is something that, I will freely admit, is a far better method of controlling these conditions than random ‘pill-popping’, I would say that they are – none the less – still only yet another ‘prop’ to be used in order to manage (but not banish) a situation which I believe Eugene Halliday would maintain the overwhelming majority here have brought upon themselves. By spending most of their energy on realizing their ‘worldly ambitions’ – be these ambitions social, or artistic, or ‘spiritual’, or cultural (even to the extent of, say, joining the Armed Forces, or the Peace Corps); or economic; or the consequences of what I might call ‘their natural appetites’; or simply because they have, by and large, judged themselves to have lead a somewhat sedentary and largely pointless existence to date, and are now suffering from the consequences of doing so at some later stage in their lives.

But (luckily for me) I also happen to believe that this position most of us have placed ourselves in rather early on in our lives is exactly the one that is needed in order to begin to Work. (Eugene Halliday often referred to these various adopted life-styles as examples of behaving ‘prodigally’). Because, as all of these consequences stem from either the way in which we have chosen to live our lives; or that we maintain we have ‘just’ found ourselves to be situated in ‘innocently’ (“None of this is really my fault officer.”)…’, they still constitute overwhelmingly – and certainly, initially at least – the actual ‘concrete matter’, or the ‘stuff’, or the ‘prima materia’,  of our own particular real ‘situation’. A state of affairs that somehow must be faced if there is ever going to be even the remotest possibility of us ever making any real progress down here; of – that is – instituting any real change in order to ultimately initiate some (even minor) transformation; or – if you prefer – to go on to realize a real profit of any sort here, no matter how insignificant it might seem to us at the time.

Indeed, I would say that we must all, without exception (and here I would include Eugene Halliday) ‘come here to this gate, or entrance’ if we really want to have any chance at all of at least beginning to move forward here.

However, in order to do any of this really. That is, in order to move forward here, it has to be done reflexively. If, on the other hand you merely wish to throw that dart of yours in that treble-twenty slot on your dart-board nearly every time;  or desire to pursue a handsomely paid career in one form of questionable activity or other (“How’s that lad of yours doing?” Very nicely thanks!”); or (if you’re really sneaky) ‘devote’ yourself to ‘helping others’ – then you will almost certainly need to develop a great deal of ‘heightened self-awareness’, and you’ll also probably need to cart a lot of ‘information’ around with you as well.

And also – and probably more importantly here at least – from this perspective of mine, Eugene Halliday – as far as the rest of us are concerned –  can only ever offer you the fruits of his own Work in the form of an example here – which you may or may not be able to hear, and even if you do, you may or may not decide to act upon.  That is, he cannot, indeed he could not – in principle – do any of this Work for you. All that he can, or could do, is point you in the right direction (if you freely allow him to do so, that is). Which is why I believe – and have ranted on in this blog about at some length – that any attempt to simply appropriate Eugene Halliday’s material (even if one is deluded enough to believe that one is doing so in order to ‘pass it on’ to others) is an endeavor I believe to be based primarily on the acquisition of power – and so is essentially a manifestation of ‘greed’ – that is, its only positive aspect here, is that it provides a perfect example (for those who have the ‘eyes to see’) of ‘the inability to realize a profit, from what was initially imagined was going to be an apparent gain’. So it is then, regrettably, just one of the more obvious negative consequences  – one of the real dangers that is – of choosing to ‘be involved’ here. (See Jacob Boehme for more info re these dangers if you’re interested further).

Eugene Halliday did not practice Yoga, nor did he ever recommend it particularly, at least as far as I have ever been able to discover – and I spent a long time attempting to find out if he ever did – and this would include research by me on this matter that involved asking direct questions on this particular subject (“To your knowledge did Eugene Halliday ever practice anything that any reasonably-minded person would refer to as ‘yoga’?”) to many who knew him personally for decades – including someone who lived with him for over 25 years… And look, if he ever did actually ‘practice yoga’, don’t you think that those to whom this would have been ‘extremely important’ would have mentioned the fact at every available opportunity, as it would have automatically gone a long way to validate their own assumed positions in the ‘spiritual marketplace’ (all that ‘I sat at the feet of’ nonsense)  … “Eugene told me that, when he was doing this particular exercise that I am showing you now, etc ….” for example? ..

He did, however, speak about the particular subject of yoga on numerous occasions (a state of affairs that I believe confused a lot people). But then he also spoke at length, on many occasions, about other ‘esoteric’ subjects, including, for example, ‘Astrology’ and ‘Tarot’. And – where it concerns these two particular subjects – I can tell you that I have also never been able to uncover one single instance, or heard anyone who maintained that they were ‘close to him’ claim, that he ever ‘prepared a natal chart for them’, or the he ‘informed them about the future appearance of a tall dark stranger in their lives’ after gazing theatrically at a couple of  randomly selected cards for a few moments, either…

What he did do however – both publicly and in print – was to recommend any number of contemplative exercises though… But, during the intervening 35-plus years since I came across his material, I have to tell you that (apart from Ken Ratcliffe) I have never really heard anyone earnestly recommend these particular exercises because they found them to be so very useful to themselves – although a couple of those who do claim to be involved here have mentioned them in passing to others. However they have not, at least as far as I’m aware, appeared to have applied themselves to the same task… More significantly for me, no one that I have spoken with this has ever been willing to provide any form of personal account concerning the ‘fruits’ arising from engaging in these particular exercises where it directly concerns their own experiences with them. A situation that I view as distinctly fishy …..I will just add here, that I would be more than happy to share how it was that I found these exercises to be – but only with those who are prepared to do the same.

And just a further note here about my experiential understanding of the function of ‘reflexive self-consciousness’… I have never been able to shake the conviction (for most of the people I have discussed this with anyway) that they imagine ‘reflexive self-consciousness’ is not a perfectly normal attribute that we all possess but that most of the time we freely chose not to use, but rather that it is instead, some weird form of ‘super-power’… And that this completely mistaken view here is, in my opinion, reinforced by Eugene Halliday’s drawing – at the beginning of the ‘hard-copy’ of his essay – of a very nice looking young man with a third eye stuck in the middle of his forehead… Now I think that he probably drew this picture in an attempt to ‘use a sprat to catch a mackerel’; that is, this ‘illustration’ fitted in very nicely with the held commonly views of ‘consciousness’ at the time. But I believe it was a mistake, because it was also a commonly held view at the time (and regrettably still is) that somehow you can have ‘more’ consciousness, or develop a ‘higher form’ of consciousness – which I think is a really dreadful metaphor, and frankly a ridiculous idea.

Reflexive self-consciousness is a tool – so think of it like this if it helps… You have decided to stop using all your hand-saws, chisels, hammers, and hand-drills, and have decided instead that you are going to use your electric ones instead – you always ‘sort of’ knew you had these by the way, but you could never somehow manage to put your hands on them at the right time and then get them out of their boxes… … And although that particular task of your very own is still before you (and is still exactly the same one that it always was) you can now apply yourself far more efficiently to either tackling it (or avoiding it 🙂 …) with your ‘shiny new, and far more efficient tools’ … But if you happen to be traveling in the wrong direction? … Well you now just get to go even further, quicker… and deeper, into the shit… So ‘developing’ your ability here doesn’t mean say that, if you have a damaged leg, you can now magically somehow just ‘fix it’….  Becoming aware of your ability to respond self-reflexively to the situation that you find yourself in from moment to moment will not provide you with a short-cut here at all then, but only with an even greater response-ability.

So reflexive self-consciousness isn’t something that you can learn to do, like ‘meditating’ or ‘waving your arms and legs about, pretending to hit somebody’ – it’s something that all of us can chose to do at every moment – and that some of us (like me) believe has to be ‘done’, as often as possible… So it isn’t something you just are then – with no effort then; it’s something that you have to – by freely choosing to do so – consciously ‘bring to be’ … You can’t ‘learn to do it’ and then ‘it just happens’ because you’ve now ‘expanded your consciousness’ (or some such tripe) and have become a ‘superior and more-evolved being’ or when it happens it’s a ‘peak experience’ – it’s the form of praxis… And all that it really does is inform you correctly…

Thus – in my experience – being reflexively self-conscious ‘in the moment’ is actually a simple thing that really everyone can do, and that requires no special training, or information, or diet, or membership of any particular group or other … It just isn’t very easy… at all!! … Why? … Well … Because you will keep taking your eye off the ball.. 🙂 …

So, like Eugene Halliday then (apparently), you can claim that you never ‘lose’ reflexive self-consciousness even when you’re ill, and you can look the person you’re talking to square in the eye while you’re telling them so – knowing full well how they will take that statement… On the other hand I’m positive that no-one can do it while they’re asleep..

And as for merely reacting? Well I can certainly hear Eugene Halliday doing just that from time to time during his talks…

What actually beggars belief here is that others were quite prepared to make these sorts of claims for him, such as, “Eugene Halliday was completely self-reflexive.” – without having the faintest idea of what it is that they’re talking about.. Like some bizarre ‘out-take’ from Monty Python’s ‘The Life of Brian’..

Finally for this bit. A few questions for you …
1). This world that you find yourself in .. What’s it like for you? …
2). Could the behavior of two people in identical circumstance be observed by a third-party (this might be you) as ‘behaving the same way for all intents and purposes’, even though one of them was reflexively self-consciousness at the time, and the other one wasn’t? … How would you go about justifying your answer here? …
3). Is the Devil reflexively self-conscious? … Why? …

I would say that the answers that provide to these questions will tell you a lot about the subject of that book you might write one day, ‘Me and My Reflexive Self-Consciousness’ … Especially that first question :-)…


 When you’ve been down one rabbit hole, you’ve been down them all.

Who’s really in control here? .. Who’s doing all this? … None of this could possibly be my fault! … I’m not responsible for any of it!

One of the weirder (and frankly hilarious) beliefs that any number of New Ageists hold is that ‘we mere earthlings’ are all the victims of some particular group of malevolent super-beings (usually one with some outlandish comic-book name or other). And that these ‘super-beings’ are intent on bringing things down here to one form of apocryphal conclusion or other by means of some particular variety of ‘fiendish plan’. A ‘plan’ that is – even as we sleep – in the process of ‘being hatched’.

Further (and here I would argue that we see can a neat demonstration of why it is that these ‘super-being’ couldn’t be all that bright, but seem to be just as dumb as the cranks who are intent on propagating these notions) that this ‘plot’ invariably seems to have been recorded on some version or other of ‘ancient manuscript’.

This ‘evidence’ etc. is then ‘explained’ by a veritable plague of contemporary interpreters, who claim, for one reason or another (and these include having been the victim of an alien abduction – invariably replete with details of a good old-fashioned anal probing; or have visited various other dimensions and nether regions while astral traveling etc) to be ‘in the know’…

Or that this evidence is, more remarkably perhaps, ‘readily available for public viewing’ – always provided that one applies the ‘correct’ interpretation that is…

This ‘evidence’ is very often located at one or more of those carefully manicured ‘archeological sites’ (maintained by either the government of the day, or the local tourist industry) scattered all around the globe, where on payment of the required entrance fee, holiday-makers can gorp at any number of numerous gigantic ancient monuments … For example: the pyramids; ancient temples in the Cambodian jungle; crumbing ‘sacred sites’ on picturesque remote Aegean islands; old-world, and new-world megaliths.

Or – if you’re not into all that old stuff because you like to believe that you’re ‘more up to date’ – the more contemporary ‘crop circle’, ‘ufo’ stuff, or ‘computer simulation’. 

As a consequence of this scenario – and rather obviously, I would claim – we can see that those ‘super-villains’ of theirs (who, it is claimed, have been running things ‘behind the scenes’ for millennia and smart though they are) have never been quite smart enough to get rid of this mountain of damning evidence; although we mere ‘victims’ here seem to have no problem at all in burning down whole libraries of those ‘secret manuscripts’; or of blowing up many of those monuments and sites; or submerging them in order to make ourselves a new reservoir; or covering them over with concrete in order to provide ourselves with a nice new car park – should we decide, on the spur of the moment that is, to do so.

And I will readily admit here that these ‘enlightened’ people are, to a major extent, all reasonably consistent – in that they all seem to be coming from the same place (but then so do STD’s I suppose) – by maintaining that none of these ‘super-visitors’ have ever come here to ‘do any of us any favors’. Their motives apparently were, and still are, always to the profound disadvantage of ‘us hapless earthlings’ who happen to live here – apart from that (inevitable) bunch of slimy collaborators and traitors, who have usually entrenched themselves in one or other of our governments, or are members of the board of some bank, or ‘multi-national’, or other, and that are so necessary in all this in order to assist in (so to speak) ‘moving this plot along’ here.

And if that all sounds like the outline of a possible script for the next Dr Who season? … Well, where exactly do you believe that these ideas originally come from if not ‘folk tales’.

In it’s contemporary version then, these ‘beings’ are inevitably members of that army of ‘Global Multi-National Neo-Fascist-Capitalist Bankers’; ‘The Illuminati’; ‘Shape-Changing Lizards’; Twisted Computer Geniuses; or good old-fashioned ‘Aliens’. And further – at least as I understand it – that the various exotic members of these ‘secret groups’ (who are all somehow ‘running things’, or at least ‘intent on eventually dominating the proceedings’ here) are supposed to be able to recognize one another without any trouble, whenever and wherever they happen to ‘rendezvous’ . That is, they instantly realize – upon meeting up with each other – that they are ‘on the same page’, as it were – without the necessity for engaging in some form of mutual interrogation, or of resorting to the use of some fancy handshake, or whatever.

A group of like minded beings then at the very least you might say – and thus definitely something of an extreme rarity down here then, at least in my book… Because attempting to organize any group of ‘normal’ people exceeding a couple of dozen or so in number down here, is invariably ‘chancing your arm’ – at least as far as my limited experience here goes. Unless, that is, you confine them in some way, by making use of a ‘rule book’, like say twenty-two of them engaging in a game of soccer – but even then it’s easy to see that cheating is the order of the day if it can be got away with …

And even if you do somehow manage to clobber something together so that you do indeed now have your own little ‘band of followers’, it seems to me that one of the essential rules of this particular game, is that you also need to (simultaneously) now clobber together (or at least to point out the existence of) another group of individuals, whose sole aim (it is suggested) is to oppose yours.

This is obviously done – and I do admit that it is an excellent way of going about things here – in order to ‘keep your lot in line’… And if you lack the resources to ‘find’ one of these ‘opposition groups’ that are so necessary to keep ‘your lot’ with their noses to the grindstone here? Well, the answer to that is very simple – you can always simply just ‘make one up’ (scapegoats and infidels are excellent examples here).. An approach that should actually work very effectively for you, because you have already demonstrated that you are very good at preaching to your converted flock in such a way that they believe everything you say. (A wonderful example there of how easy it is to manipulate those who only possess a ‘passive’ language then).

Regrettably though (at least in my somewhat grubby experience) the only significantly large group of beings who appear to be able to ‘self-organize’, without constantly monitoring each other, is that legion of pornography consumers out there, who appear to have been multiplying like rabbits ( 🙂 ) and do not appear to need to cross-monitor each other in order to check if they are keeping ‘abreast’ (pardon the pun there) of that rapid ever-expanding mountain of ‘desirable material’ out there that is being made instantly available to interested parties, on the world-wide-web  ….  A quick smirk – followed by an almost immediate ‘flash’ … (pardon the pun again) … of instant recognition then, you might say.

However, when I attempt to point this out to those who believe all this ‘conspiracy theory’ junk, they either very quickly go quiet and pretend that I didn’t say anything much of relevance or importance here; or they act as if I’m ‘trying to be funny’; or they accuse me of being needlessly hostile to their ideas – by introducing these ‘questionable types’ into, what is for them, a serious subject… 

I believe that what’s going on here is actually far, far, worse than any of these clowns I’ve alluded to above are capable of imagining. And that is, that there is not, and there has never … ever … been, anyone ‘minding the store’… And that it is all, in the end, ‘down to you’…

And what do I think of it all down here? … Well I think it’s perfect! … Exactly how it should be, given the way we have all been behaving here for the past thousands of years: and that there is absolutely nothing whatsoever supernatural about any of all this – at all! … Incomprehensible – at least for the moment  – perhaps…. But ‘spooky’? Definitely not!… We are totally responsible as a species for the mess we’re in, and everyone of us is in some degree complicit in all this… And any real and effective change is – for the time being anyway – next to impossible… There will be ‘good times’ and ‘bad times’ and those who like to imagine they are ‘in charge here’ will take full credit for the former – and simply blame the opposition (‘real’ or imagined) if it’s all just gone ‘tits up’ again.

And if I had to say what it is that I believe is going on down here? .. Well that would be that we are, for the most part, really just making it all up as we go along..

And the real cosmic mystery here for me then?… I would say that this would be that – in spite of all the madness about (and I freely admit that a great deal of it is very entertaining) – I have always had a profound and unshakable belief that, whatever it is that is taking place, it is – indeed – all ‘going somewhere’… But exactly where, I have no idea… So I will confess that I have an unshakable belief in ‘purpose’ then (even if, in the end for the time being at least, it’s only mine)….

But if I were, just for the sake of argument, forced to cautiously admit that there might be some form or other of ‘cosmic purpose’ (and I will tell you right now that this particular idea actually makes no real sense to me if I attempt to deal with it on anything other than a facile level)? … Whatever it is, it will not be that we are all required to jump down yet another one of those frigging rabbit holes – because I can do that already, myself, any damn time I choose. 


At the risk of stating the obvious – I believe that our most valuable possession is ‘life’ itself. That is – to be clear here – my life belongs to me. It does not then belong to (for example) either ‘God’ or ‘Country’ – although I can decide that it does, for one reason or another.

Everything in my life is ‘contingent upon’; that is – something prior has to happen (in the case of my birth that would obviously be that my parents ‘got together’ some nine months earlier) …Except that is, for my death, which is not ‘contingent upon’ but ‘essential’ – that is, it is ‘inevitable’.


My experience of others here is that the overwhelming majority of them are hell-bent on living as if this life of theirs belonged to someone, or something else, entirely! .. And that this ‘someone else’ – it seems to me – is, almost invariably, one variety of persona, or mask’  or other that they spend all their time and energy in maintaining; and that they wish they actually were; and are intent on presenting it to others as who it is that they ‘really’ are; . A sort of ‘Disneyland Ideal Character’ you could call it. 

Sadly then, many of them die without ever having really lived at all: without ever having realizing just how amazing it is simply to be here as themselves – warts and all…. And perhaps then, having realized this (rather obvious) fact, to go on to and tackle the task of really becoming a better person in themselves .. to themselves… To develop their latent Self-Reflexive ability then. To nurture their real talent(s) – something that we all possess while we’re here, in one form or other, to some degree. To realize … To become … To develop the ‘promise’ that we have always possessed then.

Some who are getting older here, will confess to you that they have now come to believe that they have wasted a great of their time down here ‘play-acting’ and really intend to, from now on, do ‘something about it’. But they now invariably find that they are continually biting off more than they can chew, because they can’t come to terms with the fact that they have to start this journey on ‘Go’ like everybody else down here does …

And the ‘load’ here – that you’re required to carry?  Well that only really consists in whatever it is that you can (almost) bear – no more and no less. So if you find this burden too light, or too heavy, then ‘you’re doing it wrong’. … Because only when you’re in a state of balance can you then over-balance, and take a step forward here (which is how you actually do walk, in case you didn’t know)… And you are going to need some help, at least, here  – which is why all this other lot are in here with you, cluttering up your personal dressing-room (the one with the ‘star’ on the door).

But it doesn’t really matter when you start; it only matters the degree to which you have knowingly opposed starting to-date – usually by insisting that ‘you’re not quite ready yet, because you’re (fill in the blank)….’. 

Your death then, makes of a life that has been lived in this way, really just (yet) another example of a squandered, or simply wasted, opportunity – and sadly, you will never really have existed – because you were too mean-spirited to let your real authentic self step out of that cage you have build for it and enjoy the sunshine now and again, and so flourish a bit.


If people knew how many of them I view as not knowing why they’re really here, I think most of them would probably be somewhat amused, because they think I’m a bit of a ‘lad’ anyway… But if, on the other hand they knew just why I thought so, I think they might be very offended… I know that I might if I were them 🙂


‘Random Dribbling from the Twilight World of the Undead’
by Bob Hardy
(A series of fragments from Bob Hardy’s notebooks – from the late-1970’s to date)


Here’s a couple of my photos for you:

‘Genuine and Authentic’ by Bob Hardy (Diptych)



The purpose of a mind is to produce a future

Paul Valéry


” … (W)ell of course … to us, hallucinations are real…. But … what many of them like to refer to as ‘Schizophrenia’ down here then?  … What exactly is that? …

Well you would, from our viewpoint at least, say something along the lines that this is simply a ‘position’ … taken by certain beings – a position that commands a particular perspective … And by means of which they produce a particular type of individual.. … ‘Them’ – as it were…

(He pauses to listen)… No! … This type of ‘individual’ produces a narrative that is far more ‘hermeneutical’ in character  … A sort of ‘caricature’ of the present … And by ‘present’ here I mean ‘contemporary’ … But a narrative that is … somehow … an acceptable, mainstream, cultural, mythological one .. That manages to ‘resonate’ with other particular beings

Of course, if they manage to do this really well, what they produce can then easily catch the eye of those self-elected ‘gatekeepers’ … those arbiters of ‘good taste’ … Who could very easily ‘upgrade’ this material to a ‘mystical text’ or – at very least – to ‘a work of art’!”

 Fragment from
‘ Field-notes for Armageddon’ by Bob Hardy


A perfect example of woolly thinking? … Believing that ‘The lion shall lie down with the lamb’ means the same thing as, ‘The lamb shall lie down with the lion’.


… That lovely story about the ‘good shepherd’ who goes out searching for a lamb that got lost… Am I the only one that thinks the really important bit of this story is missing? … That bit at the end where it … sort of … goes … “And the shepherd gave thanks!… Because now, come Sunday, he would be able to carry out his plan to string this lamb up by its hind legs; slit its throat to drain its blood; cut it up into pieces; roast it; and then eat it…”  

Or (yet again) have I got that all wrong?

‘Random Dribbling from the Twilight World of the Undead’
by Bob Hardy
(A series of fragments from Bob Hardy’s notebooks – from the late-1970’s to date)


Transforming ourselves, rather than simply changing ourselves, is really really very hard Work…

But ‘transformation’ is a state of affairs that can – at least as far as convincing others (particularly when doing so concerns the attempt to present yourself as being some sort of expert in ‘matters mysterious and spooky’) – be relatively easy to fake.

If only because most people have never Worked in their lives, and so don’t really grasp the essential difference between ‘change’ and ‘transformation’…

‘A change taking place’ is something that’s going to happen in various areas of everyone’s life (such as growing older for example) in and of itself, whether they like it or not. So conflating and confusing these two words is a relatively easy to produce in them.

Particularly if you can develop a way of presenting those ‘changes’ (that are – in the main – going to happen anyway) as somehow being ‘transformations’… And the consequence of that for you will be that you now have a little flock of your very own that really does believe that they are, in fact, Working because they have definitely experienced a result as a consequence of your ‘instructions’ here. (“We will learn to control our breathing – which is very difficult – and so become calmer.”) … “It works!!” … Hey presto!! .. Add a few Sanskrit words together with a sprinkling of New Age paraphernalia (get them to buy your books; scented candles; special colored mat; a ‘Save the Warthog’ t-shirt, etc. etc) and you’ve cracked it… You are now ‘The Authority’ here!

NOTE: Nearly all of those that I have discussed ‘transformation’ with, have a great deal of difficulty differentiating this term from ‘change’ – particularly where it concerns their own being (“I can see that I might have changed, but I wouldn’t say I’ve transformed.” is a common comment). And in my experience the most common analogy they use to illuminate ‘transformation’ (in the absence of their own experience of it) is that of the caterpillar’s metamorphosis into a butterfly.
In many parlor games we are given clues, and ‘when the penny drops’ we ‘realize the solution. So – where it concerns these two terms ‘transformation’ and ‘change’; and anthropomorphizing the caterpillar/butterfly analogy, here’s a clue. Try (using active imagination) and verbalize the following:
What do you imagine the butterfly remembers of it’s time as a caterpillar (if anything at all). And does the caterpillar have any ‘ideas’ about its imminent transformation (what, if anything, does it imagine it will be like)?

I believe that it is essential that you come to experience the meanings of these two terms yourself by Working on them. They are two very useful terms that, for me, demonstrate the poverty of using only definitions and etymologies when investigating words, in that you will get something from these two methods but in the end this amounts to very little.

But to become other than – at the moment – who we really are: that is, to develop our real potential, we must essentially, and initially, develop an awareness of who, and what, we are/were… in the first place!

Unfortunately, most of the people that I have met who appear to be the most desperate for some form of ‘change’ in their lives appear, regrettably, to possess little ability to even attempt this essential self-reflection (which is not the same thing as reflexive self-consciousness, by the way) .

If, like me, you’re ‘getting on in years’, you might find it useful to consider why all that studying you did earlier on in your life has been forgotten. And go on to realize that through all that striving of yours to ‘get somewhere’, you have (in a very real sense) learnt either nothing or, at most, very little… … I, for one, find the experience of this particular state of affairs in myself fascinating…But it doesn’t trouble me that much at all now, if it ever did – because frankly I don’t think it’s very important. What is far more important to me is that, through it all, I still have a profound sense of continuity; that I am essentially the same being I was when I was young, but that it was layered over, and from time to time almost obscured, by my various interacting with ‘out there’.

(Incidentally, does anyone who listened to Eugene Halliday believe that, if he were still alive, he would still be ‘cracking out the wisdom’ at 104. … … Perhaps dwelling on that might get you to see what I mean).

To continue here … Many are so dissatisfied with who they are, and still have no real idea that in order to change they must start with this ‘who they are’. Beings like this are at their most vulnerable and can very easily become the prey of those who are desperate for some sort of validation – this later group however being merely another manifestation  of  ‘not knowing’ but with the added problem for others, who get caught up in their net, that they are desperate to involving anyone they can involve in their own thrashings about… However it is possible that they can turn the light on for others, who will then experience a sudden realization as to what it is that is really going on.


Here’s a couple of my  photos that I used to helped me to actively substantiate (or ‘ground’, if you prefer) the terms ‘Change’ and ‘Transformation’.

‘Change and Transformation’ by Bob Hardy (Diptych).


There is a great deal of ‘over-lap’ for me in the use of these two terms. These two central images that I carry around though (‘ in my mind’ as it were) help to get me to the correct ‘area’, or the ‘right starting place’, in order to begin contemplating some aspect or other of one, or both, of these terms.

I begin then  … by reminding myself here, something like this,

“Change …That’s like when an actor gets made up in that whirling (not really formed, but still circumscribed) dressing room – and emerges as ‘Richard III’ on Monday, and as ‘Obone kanobe’ on Tuesday etc. … … … ‘Transformation’ … Well that’s like ‘creating a unique new emergent that rises up out of the same old stuff ‘ …”

Not Shakespeare exactly, I know, but I find that I can now move on from here with relative ease … At least to begin with 🙂 …


The manner in which I act. How it is that I proceed … Those concepts, ideas, desires, impulses that are at the root of determining what it is that I will do next, can all be more clearly understood; can reveal more of their essential nature, when Work is done with the words  ‘authority’; ‘inertia’; ‘genuine’ and ‘authentic’ (a word closely connected to ‘authority’) such that they become active.

‘Random Dribbling from the Twilight World of the Undead’
by Bob Hardy
(A series of fragments from Bob Hardy’s notebooks – from the late-1970’s to date)


Finally – and there’s no need to read it if you don’t feel like it – here’s another poem…

WT… ? (2)
‘Mind How You Go!’

by Bob Hardy

So … Anyway
This so-called life of yours

That’s the one you imagine
You’ve really lived

You do know that it wasn’t a rehearsal
For some other life
… Later

Don’t you?

So … Anyway
Was the you
That you were
When you were born
The you
That actually went on
To live this life of yours

At some point
Did you feel
That you didn’t like that one
And so you decided
That you were going
To continue on here
By performing in another life

Live a better one
In its place!
… As it were

And so
You Acted out the
That you believed
You would rather be

That is
The one you now imagined
You loved better


Perhaps now
You’re beginning to suspect
That actually
And as a consequence
You never really did
Much living at all

In the end

So what’s next then?

…For whoever it is
You’ve been here
Up to now

Well …


Nothing much really

At least as far as you’re concerned

You’re going to die

And that’s about it for you
And also
For every one of those others
Who were hanging out
In there

That’s how it really works

You’ve always
Suspected that
… Haven’t you?

Even so
You still
Went on
To decide
That if you kept you’re head down
While you were here

You might somehow
Get away
With it all

You have been forced to realize
You don’t ever really
Get away with anything
In the end. 

When all is said and done
That is what any future of Yours
Was alway for

It’s where
Whoever you were
When you got here 

Was always going
To be

But anyway …

And by all means
At your disposal

Carry on
If you wish

Because you are
Naturally free

To make every effort
In order to
Ensure that
In the mean-time

You do
Have a nice day


Bob Hardy
Chezard, Switzerland

6th July, 2017


What can be asserted without evidence can be dismissed without evidence.

Christopher Hitchens


I thought I might begin this post with a poem … for a change 🙂



by Bob Hardy

God has never
God does not
And God will never

Do requests


God has never
God does not
And God will never

Demand that you do stuff


God does not want

Any of your money


God does not require

Elected morsels of your flesh


But if

From time to time
You believe that you must

                      (And if you enjoy talking to yourself)

Then the occasional
Heart-felt “Thank you!”

Is more than sufficient here


You see

God just is



And simply put

Everything happening

That really matters
In all of this

Is actually
Up to you

All of the time


And that’s how bad
Things really are

Down here

I’m afraid.


Have a nice day.



‘God’ is most definitely not ‘Absolute Sentient Power’… Regrettably though, it seems to me that ‘Absolute Sentient Power’ is what the vast majority of ‘religious folk’ down here very quickly end up worshiping.  


‘Random Dribbling from the Twilight World of the Undead’
by Bob Hardy
(A series of fragments from Bob Hardy’s notebooks – from the late-1970’s to date)


This post was written in response to an email I received a short time after I posted the previous one, from someone with whom I have been discussing – for some considerable time now – various ‘matters arising’ from my efforts here in this blog.

And because of the nature of this blog – in which I post (for the greater part at least) about my relationship to a number of particular concepts contained in Eugene Halliday’s material that have been of major importance to me – I have also included in my response here a considerable amount of extra material that I believe to be connected in one way or another with Eugene Halliday’s approach to these particular matters. Material that I probably would not have included (at least in the detailed manner in which I have attempted to do so here) in any personal reply to this email.

This might also now be a good time here to clarify my present relationship to Eugene Halliday’s material, and tell you that for some considerable time now I rarely listen to, or read, any of the material that is contained in the  ‘Eugene Halliday Archive’. This material was however, something that I did focus upon, but not exclusively, for many years … I mention this because some readers might have come to believe otherwise, for the obvious reason that  – when all is said and done – the title of this blog is, ‘Inside The Eugene Halliday Archive’!

I have also attempted to make it unequivocally clear to the reader here, throughout these posts of mine, that while I have a great deal of respect for all of Eugene Halliday’s material, the number of concepts of his that I have actually attempted to Work with are relatively few – at least to the degree that I have come to feel competent enough to talk about them from my own perspective.


For reasons that I hope will eventually become clear, I have decided to begin here with what was originally intended to be the second half of this post, and immediately followed that by what was originally the first half….

If it helps

         …..think of this post

                      ……something likebob-urobrous

this …….                        .



… I believe at this point that it would be a good idea if I provided you with at least some details from an actual, real, concrete example from my own particular experiences of Working… That is, an example of how a particular situation might present itself to me as one with which I should/could Work… And at the same time, also elaborate upon the sorts of things that I ‘bring to the table’, in order to help me further here.

NOTE: I don’t believe it’s possible to Work all the time … continuously…

But as to ‘continuously working on being able to Work’? – Well, I’m fine with that.

Maybe this might help here… You are not ‘doing’ breathing all the time. Breathing is simply taking place. And although you might decide to focus on your breathing in order to control it in some way, and then claim that you are now ‘Breathing’, with a capital ‘B’ (and perhaps you actually become very good at doing so), there’s that moment before you decided to control your breathing in this particular way when, logically, you obviously couldn’t have been. Which is when you were not ‘Breathing’ then, but were merely ‘breathing’ (with a small ‘b’)…

Thus my claim to be ‘Working’, implies that there are times when I am not Working, but that I am only (perhaps) ‘working’…

So, ‘Working; is a ‘willed act’ for me then. That is, it is primarily an activity that I have to engage in; that I have to do… This is because my natural response to anything at all is normally only ever to ‘react’ to it. And even if this reaction of mine really ‘does the business’ and is ‘successful’, it is still only ever a reaction… Just as training oneself not to ‘respond’ (by practicing some form of, say, ‘calming’ exercise) to a particular range of stimulus/situations is also, in the end, still just a reaction. However, we could in this case perhaps refer to this reaction as a ‘conditioned response’ – if that makes you feel any better… (Eugene Halliday had quite a bit to say about these sorts of responses by the way, if you’re interested). Regrettably however, as I understand it, developing techniques like this has got very little to do with Working – although they might help to keep you out of the pub, or to mediate a ‘panic attack’.

To Work, I must reflect, which in my case is always (that is, in every single instance) only something that I can only ever freely will to do…  It takes effort on my part, and so it is never just going to ‘happen’ then… At least for me I know that it isn’t.

An essential word that I had to Work on initially (to activate) here, was ‘transformation’, and not ‘controlling’, or ‘banishing’ or ‘healing’.. or ‘letting’… And in order to make any practical attempt at this, I first of all needed to create (and then ‘absorb’) a ‘system’ so that the energy tied up in any (in the moment) disagreeable state of say, worry, or panic, or depression, was somehow channelled into something that I wanted it to do (which is a completely different solution for me than the one I normally use in order to simply ‘get rid’ of some mood or other that I find myself in, so that I can then go back to grinning inanely)… I also find it very difficult to do, and I fail at it far more often than I succeed; it can also become extremely complicated very quickly; and it will more than likely ‘fight back’ in any way that it can in order to ‘remain in being’ (which is a very Eugene Halliday way of putting it … 🙂 ..). Funnily enough, the allegorical images contained in many Alchemical texts serve to illustrate this process remarkably well for me (but not however the texts that they accompany – at least to anything like the same degree that these images do).

So, no sitting still and just letting the mind become a mirror for me – if for no other reason than I have never found any value whatsoever here in attempting to doing so …  Directing my own thought processes though? Very useful indeed! … But it took me ages to develop any effective technique, and, even so, I find that it always requires a great deal of energy anyway – at least if I’m attempting to clarify some matter or other that I find extremely complex… But, happily for me, I also have very little problem in temporarily shutting this process down now if I chose to do so, and then coming back again to continue Working when I feel recharged…

Anyway, my example here below will, I hope, provide you with at least some concrete information re how I go about Working; my practical involvement with concepts of Eugene Halliday’s, such as ‘system’ and ‘governing concept’; and also how this active involvement differs significantly from that of my merely reacting passively to situations that I happen to have ‘collided’ with during the course of any one particular day, and have perhaps gone on to deal with in some way or other …. or not.

… So this is how I Work then … Regrettably for me, as I have already pointed out here, I have been unable to locate anyone else who appears to have been involving themselves with Eugene Halliday’s concepts in remotely the same way that I do. And also, as I say, there’s always the distinct possibility that the manner in which I have been going about things here is just plain wrong.

I’ll try to describe at least the outline of what it is that I do here in such a way that you could have a go at this example yourself if you wanted to (but in your own particular way of course)… And just quickly add, that if you do give it a shot, I would be really interested to hear how you got on 🙂 .


OK then… Here we go …

At some point in my life I realized that the emotional, cognitive, and physical aspects of the state that I had been passively experiencing during any dreaming that had taking place immediately prior to my waking up, was very largely conditioning (was directly responsible for) the state in which I found myself to be in immediately upon my waking up – usually with any emotional aspect that happened to be present in that dreaming state now predominating.

And at this same point in my life (so, not before) I also realized that the particular emotional state that I found myself in immediately upon waking here (determined, as I now realized, by my passive emotional state during that pre-waking dream period) was pretty much pre-determining not only both the focus and trajectory of any thoughts that I might subsequently be having; but also my ‘physical demeanor’ (my breathing rate and, say, degree of muscular tension), at least for a considerable period after waking up…

And further, troublingly, I suspected that this state of affairs might actually continue on for the whole day, because of some sort of ‘knock-on’ effect! …

NOTE: Something that I later found out – from conducting some research in this area – was that many an educated Roman actually believed this to be the case. So much so, that if they’d had a ‘lousy night’, then they would often delay important decisions, or even remain indoors, for the remainder of their waking day.

Believe it or not, for the very long time prior to this point in my life, I had simply not realized that these two situations (dreaming and waking) were intimately connected in this way. Although when I did do so, it seemed blindingly obvious …

“Hey! The reason why I was all tense and anxious when I just got up this morning was because of that scary dream I’d just been having about me and that shark.”; “Hey! The reason why I was all jumpy, irritated, and frustrated when I got up this morning was because of that dream I just had where I couldn’t get out of that maize for what seemed like a thousand years.”; “Hey! The reason why I was so very relaxed and pleasantly disposed when I got up this morning was because of that dream I’d just had where I was wandering about in that beautiful garden.” etc. etc. etc.” ..

This state of affairs obviously must have happened to me on countless mornings before this, but – up until that particular morning – it just hadn’t ‘registered’ with me.

That is, had you asked me the following question ‘way back’,  “Does the dream that you have just had prior to waking, condition the way you feel when you get up?” (or something along those lines), I would have said, “Yes, now I come to think about it, of course it probably does!” But I did not then go on to factor-in the significance, or deliberate upon the effect, of what it was that this extremely personal (unique to me) experience might actually be about. In fact you might say that it would continue to mean very little to me, until it had become a ‘real experience’ for me.

I’m saying here then that, although I might obviously have been able to talk about these facts – that is, discuss them (perhaps even in great detail) – this does not necessarily mean that ‘the penny had dropped’ … at all! … In fact I could just as easily discuss these ‘events’ as if they were something that had only ever happened to you, or to people ‘in general’,  but had never actually happened to me  – because, say, I happen to be one of those people who insist that they, “…Know it’s hard to believe, but I never dream! At least I’ve never been able to remember that I have!” – However I would still find it relatively easy to join-in with some form of discussion here, and perhaps to even add my own two-penny-worth, by suggesting stuff like, “Well, that does sound extraordinary! But I think that what this ‘nocturnal adventure’ of yours might actually mean, is that you might be … etc. etc.”.

To posses any meaning then, there must be a conscious self-reflexive awareness that this event has happened ‘in the now’. (Although I believe that it is possible for the ‘meaning’ of these experiences to come to you, at any time, like a ‘bolt out of the blue’… However, you can’t make this ‘bolt’ happen by any act of will (at least I can’t) – so I’d say it’s best not to hold your breath here)…

To put this another way – the word ‘realize’ and also ‘in the now’ are the important ones here, and not ‘believed’, or ‘understood’, or ‘thought’ or ‘felt’, or ‘elaborated upon in great depth’ or some other word(s) like that…

Can you appreciate the differences for me, in these words here?

Only because of this ‘realization’ then, would I claim that this situation was now a ‘real’ one for me….

As I say though, I could, of course, also claim to ‘believe’, ‘understand’, ‘think’, ‘feel about’, etc., this situation, but none of these words convey (necessarily) a ‘realization’.

And deciding what word (in this particular case ‘realize’) is appropriate here, is, I believe, an example of just how particular you have to be if you are attempting to illuminate your actual experiences to yourself – never mind explaining these experiences to someone else! But, even so – and perhaps even more importantly – those that you do choose to speak about these matters with will also have to ‘have the ‘ears to hear’ you, in order to ‘get’ what you’re saying…to begin with! …

So then, in order for this event to come to mean anything (by perhaps only implying that there might be an interesting connection between my waking dream and awakened state if I chose to focus on it), it had to become real for me, in that I had to have realized the truth of this in a particular, actual, active (not passive) experience. In this particular case then, one particular morning the ‘penny dropped’. And as a consequence, I was then filled with the energy necessary to pursue the matter. Or to use my metaphor of a ‘journey’ here – my experience of this (recalled) event was now perceived by me to be emanating from a particular, interesting direction; and that attempting to ‘move towards it’ in order to examine it further (and maybe going on to move past it and continue on in the same direction) was now experienced by me as a ‘goal’ … To put it in Eugene Halliday’s terms perhaps – My ‘will had now been exalted’ here by this realization … Such that I was now eager to ‘get there’ and ‘also perhaps do a spot of exploring when I did so’.

If you’re OK with all that… Then go on to this next bit…


It’s very important to have some way of representing Work to yourself in your own particular way.

NOTE: Traditionally, at least for Europeans with my particular cultural background, this ‘representing’ – in it’s textual form at least – would include allegories such as: passing through a difficult to negotiate gate; sticking to a particular route; toiling in the fields in the heat of the mid-day sun; reaping and sowing; separating the wheat from the chaff before consigning the latter to the fire; ‘realizing a profit’; appreciating the dangers of foolish, wasteful, behavior’, etc. etc.

Where it concerns my ‘journey then, this would include: balancing and stumbling; rate of progress; degree of difficulty; fatigue; terrain; others here; losing my way, etc. etc…  I will then incorporate these into narratives, by making use of my active imagination.

Because of ‘the way I’m made’ (as my mum liked to put it), before I was actually able to spend time applying myself to any one, particular ‘Work activity’ – like investigating that dream/waking thing (an activity that I wasn’t too bothered about accomplishing actually, once I’d made up my mind to do it) – someone like me here in this situation has, first of all, to find some way of understanding, in its broadest sense – the ‘What’ of Work … As in, “How does it differ from all the other things that I do: and what then, am I doing when I’m not Working?” … “What is the over-all nature (the major features as it were) of Work?” … “Is it special somehow?”…“What sorts of things are supposed to happen as a consequence?” etc. etc… Because – for all I knew – it might be that I had actually already been Working ‘all along’ anyway, but I just didn’t know it…

This should explain to you why it was not so much what Eugene Halliday said that I was primarily interested in (indeed much of what he did say was of little value to me in the end because I couldn’t use it), but rather, the ‘manner of his saying what he said’, as it were.  That is – how it came about that he was able to say what he said in the way that he said it – and so then, what it was that he was actually doing (and not simply what he was talking, or writing, about).

Anyway I eventually came to appreciate that I best understood what Work was – in this sense at least – by making allegorical use of that ‘Journey’.


I believe that the most important function of beings such as Eugene Halliday is to help others to make a start at Working – always providing of course that these others ‘have the ears’ to hear him, in the first place… And I also believe that this was Eugene Halliday’s sole, affirmed, intention… That is, simply to help others to ‘wake’ up, if he could (See his very early essay ‘The Defense of the Devil’ for more on this).


Why must I first ‘wake-up’ in order to Work? Because it is the essential initial state that must immediately precede any actual realization of why it is that I’m here; and that in order to embark on my ‘journey’ I can only start doing so from exactly where I am at that time, as opposed to where it is that I would like to be, or – more dangerously perhaps – where it is that I am pretending to everyone else (including myself)  that I am…

So I have to first of all realize then, where I actually ‘am’ …’in the now’ … I have to ‘wake-up’ then.

Just figuring this out properly, involved me in a process that actually took me decades to sort out … And even when I had done so, I knew that this did not guarantee that I would ever actually, take that first step. But, on the positive side I did manage to activate words such as ‘dither’..

……… Dither …… dither.

‘Random Dribbling from the Twilight World of the Undead’
by Bob Hardy
(A series of fragments from Bob Hardy’s notebooks – from the late-1970’s to date)


Anyway … … To examine further what I now believed was ‘going on’ with this dreaming/waking thing I, first of all, had to develop the ability to do this examining immediately upon waking up. Because even those major features of these dreams would, more often than not, rapidly fade from memory in a matter of seconds.

But the ability to engage here immediately on waking up was not an easy one for me to develop. In fact I would, more often than not, simply not remember to do so until it was far to late, and then I would usually only be able to recall fragments of these dreams.

However, this was enough to keep me at it, and so that’s what I did until I could manage to do so properly. I improved gradually by practicing – so there’s nothing mystical going on here then!

NOTE: Incidentally, now that I can do it, I often don’t (!) … However if I do ‘intuit’ that something of value has taken place here – something I need to Work on that is – then I will.

This is because Working on these dreams requires a great deal of efficiently directed effort (and time) on my part. And I am aware that, being circumscribed, I only ever have this energy in finite supply – although, by ingesting food I can, to some extent at least, restore it; or I can free up – and thus release energy – that is tied up either in previously established patterns of behavior, or in (and from a pronounced Jungian perspective) what I refer to as, ‘complexes’.

So not wasting, but rather developing, any ‘talent’ that you might have here is supremely important… You might almost say that it’s a ‘Commandment’ 🙂

And – very important to bear in mind here and, quoting a proverb that Eugene Halliday like to make frequent use of – you’ll get ‘Nothing for nothing, and very little for a half-penny’… So be prepared!


Constructing ‘reasons’ as to why it is that you shouldn’t begin Working ‘just yet’ though (although you don’t actually tell yourself that directly of course) is the defining characteristic (and indeed the only really important meaning for me) of that term ‘inertia’ – at least in the active sense that Eugene Halliday used the word.

And so ‘intertic’, or ‘engramic patterns of behavior’ if you like, are not simply some problem or other that you’ve decided (or been persuaded) that you’ve ‘got’ (actually of course it’s more the case that it’s ‘got’ you)… Like, for example, always mechanically answering to the name that your parents gave you at birth … or something like that…This was just Eugene Halliday’s way of explaining ‘inertia’ to the curious idiot – a way of pointing them gently in the right direction – should they wish later to chose to move forward with this idea… Actually the example he often gave of the patterning of the behavior of children by adults (a state of affairs that he invariably painted in a negative light – which could tell you a great deal more about him than he might have suspected actually, particularly as he was childless) supplies far more interesting examples of positive self-patterning behavior for me… For example, any decent parent can tell you that their children will often engage in their own particular endless repetitious behavior with obvious pleasure; and anyone who has had to read the same bed-time story night after night to their own children can also tell you about repetition – particularly if you try to change the story in some way because you have formulated no sensible reason as to why it is that they should want you to engage in this behaviour, and believe that in making these changes you are making the story more ‘interesting’ for them. (Clue: Try imagining that you are living in an almost completely unpredictable environment for most of the time, like them).

Eugene Halliday would often give members of his ‘flock’ ‘special names’ (an alarming number of which, it seemed to me, started with the letter ‘Z’); or he would get them to throw the letter ‘h’ into their already existing name (‘Ken’ became ‘Khen’ for example – which always bothered me because the name Kenneth already had the letter ‘h’ in it – So would it now be ‘Khenneth’? … Which I thought was a bit daft, – Baptismal and Abramic precedents not withstanding here of course. But even so, I thought this was all a bit hubristic and contrived myself, even for the leafy suburbs of South Cheshire. 🙂 ..)

Anyway, these were situations which, in my opinion, should have provided those involved here with an excellent and controlled opportunity to clearly see how this new name almost immediately began to accrue to itself any number of ‘new’ (and often the same old) inertic patterns of behavior. Tragically for most here though – at least as I saw it – these new patterns of behavior were often far more seductive in quality than their old ones, because it was imagined that these particular ‘new’ ones (the word ‘new’ merely means ‘most recent’ by the way) were connected to something ‘special’ that they were ‘doing with Eugene’, and so, these new patterns of behavior were ‘OK’ habits then … Which is obviously hopelessly wrong – because, of course, they’re just another set of habits… And, even worse, they also trapped those who had willingly chosen to become involved here in a very seductive ‘Tacit Conspiracy’ – often for decades.

The less attractive aspect of engaging in the process of establishing behavioral patterns of dependency in others (as you will probably know) is referred to as ‘grooming’. This is an essential technique in the creation of hierarchies in any number of extremely well documented cults, and often has tragic consequences… (By the way, the OED definitions, and also the etymological roots, of the words ‘cult’ and ‘culture’ are well worth investigating).

It is most important for you to bear in mind here, that most people actually can’t wait to be presented with, or go on to develop, ‘new’ habits. That way they can still act mechanically, but might now be able to present themselves as ‘in the know’ one way or another, and so avoid doing any real Work… ‘Going straight from siting at the foot of the teacher into the teacher’s chair’ .. If you see what I mean.

Developing a technique that requires you to be forever ‘searching for the truth’ is another example of a useful habit here. This is a really efficient way of staying where you are, exactly where you’ve always been, and actually requires very little real effort… You just have to continually find yourself some question or other  (it’s not really important what it actually is), which functions in such a way that you can justify the fact that you never actually commit to anything that might move you out of your comfort zone, or (more importantly for most) might damage that image of yourself that you’ve spent so much time and effort constructing.

‘Stage two’ here then, is believing that, in order to move on, ‘good habits’ should be ‘developed’. These are then often presented to others using an attractive and fashionable label… As in, “I’ve started practicing that new (fill in the blank) now! It’s really interesting and, you know, (smile) it has really helps me with that (fill in the blank) problem I was having  … And I have to say say that I now feel so much better about myself!” etc.  … This, in my experience, is where the overwhelming majority of those who are ‘looking for answers here’ (and there are loads of them about) are to be found…

Problematically, it now becomes even more difficult (next to impossible might be better) to get them to look at the fact that everything they needed to move forward they already had, and was actually right their under their noses here, to begin with… Because they have convinced themselves that what is wrong ‘here’ (them) is in fact something which is wrong ‘there’ – as in ‘the world… out there’. Which they now decide that they are going to try to do ‘something about’ – even if it’s ‘only ‘in a small way’. And so they now spend the overwhelming majority of their time learning about, or learning to do, ‘new stuff’ so that they can ‘do something useful’ and ‘help’ the rest of us.. Isn’t that a wonderful excuse for not attending to their own development? If it wasn’t for the fact that many here will actually believe this is what they’re really doing now, anyway!


To move on here …

It’s very important now for you to appreciate that I am not claiming my realization re this dreaming/waking thing here was an example of me Working – because it wasn’t.

It was only the point at which – and in this particular instance only – I had the opportunity to begin Working (I was ‘at the gate’ so to speak). And I would add here that this was only because I had been, in some way (and not necessarily as a consequence of my own deliberations) ‘prepared’, and was thus potentially able to begin Working here…

So then, this ‘being prepared’ is also an essential part of this whole Working process for me. It’s something like having the experience that events have ‘conspired’, or ‘constellated’, in order to get me to this point… Again, an allegory in the West here would be that of ‘The ground in this particular field has been tilled, and so was now ready for the seed’…

So this realization then, is only the ‘necessary prelude to being able to Work’… And only to Work .. here .. now.


Having had a ‘realization’ then – and as a consequence – I need to construct a ‘system’, in order to actually do any Work here.


(A large spotlight quickly fades up, and we can see him standing center stage, dressed rather like an Oxbridge Don, complete with black gown. However he is sporting a slightly too large floppy white bow-tie over a check-shirt, and is wearing a pair of ‘John Lennon’ spectacles . The rest of the stage is in darkness.

We see that he is holding a piece of paper in each hand, which he then raises just above his head

Before he addresses his audience directly, he steps confidently forward, slapping one piece of paper on top of the other with an exaggerated theatrical flourish. The spotlight follows him, as we first of all overhear him making a short comment quietly to himself).

“You know… I really do like this little piece…I think I’ll call it … 

(He has now reached the front-center of the stage. He clears his throat in an exaggerated theatrical manner, and proclaims confidently, and loudly, to his audience). 

“.. ‘Snakey Stuff’!! 

(He grins broadly before beginning to read. The spot has been tightened up so that we now only see the top half of his body.. As he reads, he starts moving slowly, stage left. At the end of this short piece, as he utters the last word and returns to the front center of the stage, it is important that the audience realize that he has actually completed a perfect circle). 

And…without data. That is to say, without developing your very own ‘Scheme of Inquiry’ … Can you appreciate that the very best that you will ever contribute to any subject is simply your facile, uninformed opinion?

(He pauses, looks up, and peers out at his audience. Before continuing on).

And further, that without some sort of ‘Conceptual Framework’ – even if you do go on to develop your own ‘Scheme of Inquiry’, and so then, manage to accrue … and perhaps bother to commit to memory … all sorts of interesting ‘smatterings of knowledge’… The best that you will only ever be able to contribute to any subject, will be some manner of… smart-assed … clever … reaction to it … No matter how proficient that you might now believe yourself to be, at stringing words together.

 (He pauses again, and looks up, peering out once again at his audience, before continuing on).

This ‘Conceptual Apparatus’? … This ‘Conceptual Framework’… that you must fashion for yourself ?..

(He looks up from his paper, and peers over his glasses – which are parked on the end of his nose – and says conspiratorially to the audience in a slightly quieter voice)

I often think of this ‘Conceptual Framework’ as my very own ‘mirror’… But others find this metaphor very confusing and imagine that it means I have to remain very still in order to peer into it and …hopefully …’see stuff’!  … So to them it’s not like I’m shaving and using a very sharp cut-throat razor… or driving around in rush-hour traffic glancing in my rear-view mirror then! .. Which is actually more like what goes on! (He grins broadly, before continuing his reading in a louder voice)

Anyway! It is the one essential tool in your armory that you must construct for yourself… (He says in a slightly louder voice) … and only you can actually construct it! (He pauses again and lowers his voice a little before continuing) … if you’re ever going to go on and make any real use at all, of that ‘reflexive’ ability of  yours!

(He pauses again, looking up over his glasses again, and then continues reading – his voice rising slightly for the next sentence). 

And if you haven’t constructed this ‘Conceptual Framework’  – never mind then going on to Work with it; to add to it; to ‘polish it’; to refine it … as it were? (He looks up over his glasses again, and then continues on in a slightly lower voice) Then although your utterances on any particular subject may indeed now be the result of your …perhaps considerable … inquiries here (He pauses) … Due to that ‘Scheme of Inquiry’ of yours that I just mentioned before, do you see? (He pauses again and looks around before continuing on)… It will, at best, still only ever constitute your reaction here, even if it is now an informed one! And no matter how reasonable it might seem to be to you at the time, it will only ever be just that – simply another of your reactions … another of your ‘opinions’ … informed or not…

(He gestures theatrically with the first piece of paper as he places it behind the second one, and adjusts his glasses, before continuing on with his reading).

And the problem with that? … Well, absent the initial stimulus that provoked this reaction. This subsequent informed, or uninformed, opinion of yours? (He looks up again over his glasses at his audience before continuing). No matter how smart it was, it will very soon fade from your memory … to be lost forever anyway. At least as far as you’re concerned!… (He pauses)

Funnily enough though! (He looks up over his glasses again  and grins) It could be of real use to others who might have heard you delivering it (He  grins again, only this time it is even broader) So you could say that these others have been ‘given this talent’ of yours … as a ‘free-be’ … if you want! .. (He looks down, and, while appearing to search for his place on the paper, says in a quieter voice before continuing on). Regrettably though, as I say, it will be of absolutely no use whatsoever to you!

To be of use to you – or perhaps to others – you must obviously, also develop your own ‘Mode of Presentation’… And the essential ingredient to this? … Without which this ‘Mode of Presentation’ of yours will only ever still be so much blather? …(He pauses again dramatically, and looks around before continuing on). This ‘Mode of Presentation’ must be thoroughly grounded in your real, actual, lived experiences… Because it is only these that are ever going to constitute the real subjects of your Scheme of Inquiry! … Even if it appears to you at the time that you’re studying ‘something else’.

And … Ultimately! … This is the only data here that is of any real value … (He pauses dramatically before looking up at his audience, and then speaks, using a very loud voice, the word)… … … And!..

(As he completes that word ‘And!’ he drops both his hands, which now contain one piece of paper each. We realize that he has now moved back to where we saw him front and center stage. The stage lights now go up to reveal that he has, in fact, walked slowly around the circumference of an uroboros.  

He now moves back towards it’s center – situated at his original position, center stage, where we first saw him.

The stage lights go down, and once again we see him illuminated by the large spotlight. He raises both his hands above his head, each of which has a piece of paper in it.

Before he addresses his audience directly again, we first of all overhear him making a short comment to himself, as he steps confidently forward, slapping one piece of paper on top of the other with an exaggerated theatrical flourish).

“You know… I really do like this little piece…I think I’ll call it … 

(He has now reached the front-center of the stage again. He grins broadly before beginning to read. The spot has been tightened up so that, once again, we now only see the top half of his body..He clears his throat in an exaggerated theatrical manner, and proclaims confidently, and loudly, to his audience). 

Snakey Stuff”!!! 

(He grins broadly before beginning to read. The spot has now tightened up so that we now only see the top half of his body..) 

And! …without data.(audio cut, and lights black-out)

From ‘Field-notes for Armageddon’ by Bob Hardy


Any ‘system’ that I use contains the same four essential major aspects, or components. These consist of:

1).  A ‘Governing Concept’.

After Eugene Halliday – this would be, ‘All that there is, is Sentient Power’. Which means, for me, that any use I put my system to must demonstrate to my satisfaction that this is indeed the case.

So – one of the ways in which I could ask myself the same question as, “What is going on here with this dreaming/waking thing?” would be, “If ‘All that there is, is Sentient Power’, then what is going on here with this Sentient Power such that this dreaming/waking activity can be understood by me to be a manifestation of it?” (Which is actually far more like the question that I would actually ask)… … And – by the way – answers here that would certainly not be acceptable to me would, for example, be, “Because Eugene Halliday told us all that it’s true.”: or, “Because I believe that ‘All that there is, is Sentient Power’ no matter what the evidence is that I happen to uncover which appears to demonstrate the contrary.”

Perhaps this would be a good time to mention that, although I have stated in this blog that Eugene Halliday’s short and pithy ‘All that there is, is Sentient Power’ is my ‘governing concept’ – actually it isn’t 🙂  … Well it is … But this is the ‘shorthand version’ of it that I make use of because, first of all, it’s convenient and I like it, and it’s easy to put down on paper; and secondly, I am assuming that those who are reading this blog will probably have come across it somewhere in Eugene Halliday’s material..

But this concept has been around a very long time. In fact I would claim that it belongs at the very beginning of Western Philosophy…

Here, in my opinion, is the ‘first version’ of it – which is far more like my actual ‘governing concept’… It is also from a text I believe that Eugene Halliday would certainly have come across very early on in his studies…

We must then, in my judgment, first make this distinction: what is that which is always real and has no becoming, and what is that which is always becoming and is never real? …[28A] …. We must ask the question which, it is agreed, must be asked at the outset of inquiry concerning anything: Has it always been, without any source of becoming; or has it come to be, starting from some beginning? [28C].                                                                                                                             Plato – Timaeus. 

The most import aspect, for me to ponder over, in this text from Plato? … The realization of the supreme importance of that very first phrase here, ‘We must then … first make this distinction..’ Because, in my opinion, if you don’t do so, you cannot actuate this ‘governing concept’.

And bear in mind that this particular axiom of mine should not be taken to mean that it is ‘A tenet of my belief’, or some thing along those lines … It  is more like a ‘theory’ that I hold to; a way of investigating ‘meaning’ for me; a component of the ‘deeper structure’ that arises in my attempts to formulate a ‘Conceptual Framework’ (See ‘3’ below)

2).  A ‘Scheme of Inquiry’:

I would claim that this is also after Eugene Halliday.

This consists essentially of taking on board all and anything which happens to come along that I can handle… This would include – but would not be restricted to – studying lots of difficult books about lots of different subjects; acquiring legitimate qualifications and skills; making a living; entering relationships of one kind and another; life experiences, etc. etc.

In the case of the dreaming/waking thing that I am using for my example here, this would include an exhaustive investigation into the dreams themselves (location, events, emotional state, etc.); investigating whether any of the components of my dream match-up with any of my day-to-day experiences, together with a similar examination of my immediate waking state (my emotional state, the subject matter of my thoughts, bodily sensations, etc.).

The one essential tool for Working effectively with any ‘Scheme of Inquiry’ would be, of course the use, and continuous development of, an ‘active’ language.

3). A ‘Conceptual Framework’:

‘Conceptual Apparatus’ is a term from the 1930’s, that I appropriated from the Polish Philosopher, Kazimiertz Adjukiewicz, because I rather liked it…

However, I did then go on and customize it somewhat … For your information it was originally defined as: “The set of all meanings which attach to the expressions of a closed and connected language.” (A part of his definition that I rather liked), and that then goes on, “Thus two conceptual apparatuses are either identical or entirely disjoint.” (A part of his definition that I didn’t agree with at all), and ends with “(E)very meaning is an element of some conceptual apparatus.” (Another part that I certainly do completely agree with).

In my system here, I refer to my modified version of this ‘Conceptual Apparatus’ as a ‘Conceptual Framework’, and it consists of those ideas and concepts that arise as a consequence of the examination, and subsequent distillation of, those events that constitute the raw material (prima materia) obtained from my ‘Scheme of Inquiry’. Ideas and concepts that must then all be placed in formal relationships with one another by me, in texts that make use of my particular ‘active language’, in such a way as to illuminate for me the particular realized event that is under scrutiny.

Thus, hopefully, they will inform, and  illuminate, the ‘deeper underlying structures’, if you like, that are common to all my dreaming and waking states, and that I conceive of as being responsible for, and that generate, these states.

The ideas and concepts that go to make up my ‘Conceptual Framework’ not only consist in material obtained from my contemplations here, but also make use of those ideas and concepts which I believe I understand, and that are contained in any one or more of my previous, more serious detailed studies into, for example, Jung’s approach to understanding the nature of the ‘unconscious’; or Marx’s approach to understanding the nature of ‘The Commodity’, … etc.

This ‘Conceptual Framework’ that I make use of in my system not only confines me to, but also initiates the production of, that series of questions then which will serve (hopefully) to ‘get behind’ the particular phenomena that I am investigating in my ‘Scheme of Enquiry’. But only from the particular aspect of my ‘Conceptual Framework’…

And so any result that I do manage to obtain here obviously then, constitutes an ‘abstraction’. (It is only perceived from this particular aspect – which is only one of possibly many) … A situation that Eugene Halliday maintains (and I agree), is problematic… Because there is a tendency to wrench the information you do gather completely out of it’s context – to completely decontextualize it – but to then go on and believe that you’ve now found out all about it…

So you must be continually aware that any ‘truth’ you do believe that you’ve uncovered using your ‘Conceptual Framework’ is not ‘absolute’, but is merely ‘relative’… However, ‘if you’ve done it right’ it should qualify as being ‘Sufficient onto the day’.

4). A ‘Mode of Presentation’:

a). To one’s self; and also perhaps b). To others…

My attempts at constructing and refining my active language would be an example of a); and the more linear account here in this blog would be an example of b).


Coming to grips with the Jungian concept of ‘directed’ and ‘non-directed’ thinking would be of great help here, in my opinion.  (See Vol 5 Collected Works: ‘Symbols of Transformation’. Part One: section II – ‘Two Kinds of Thinking’)


To continue… What you must really now go on to appreciate, or better, ‘realize’ here 🙂 – and so not just say stuff like, “Yes I understand that, it’s obvious!” – is that my particular ‘Scheme of Inquiry’ and my ‘Mode of Presentation’  are completely different from each other… And this is extremely important for you to always bear in mind.

Actually, I initially confused Eugene Halliday’s ‘Scheme of Inquiry’ (his studying, and then the subsequent production of those précis of his – see below) with his ‘Mode of Presentation’ (the material he presented to the public at large in his many talks and essays)… Well actually it was more like I had no idea at all what was going on when I first heard him speak. Particularly as those I questioned about his ‘technique’ here, seemed to be implying that the information he was delivering was coming ‘to him’ from some ‘Infinite Field’,” … (A ‘Field’ that he was ‘somehow’ … ‘letting’ … ‘come through him’, as it were)…

This was somewhat misleading, to say the least, but I eventually figured out what was going on here – well actually I just read the rules of membership for ISHVAL and the exact instructions about how to engage in a Scheme of Inquiry were there! (I’ve already posted a great deal about these ‘rules’, in an earlier post if anyone’s interested)  And it was only decades after he had died that I realized nobody I spoke with who claimed to be one of his ‘followers’ etc. (and there were scores of them) had actually ever either heard of these rules; or if they had, had taken the trouble to read them; or if they had read them, had taken any real notice of them – which, when you think about it, is really weird! … I think they just preferred to believe all that stuff about the ‘field’ … and that he was ‘somehow’ … ‘letting it all’ … ‘come through him’ … business instead … Because, initially at least, lets face it, it seems to be a much easier, far more refined, and downright much more pleasant way of going about things down here – far more enjoyable than actually taking the trouble to engage with any of those very hard to understand books at least! But if you then go on for decades ‘attempting to make contact with this field’ for yourself, and nothing really ever happens here that can’t be explained in a more obvious and sensible way, then you’re in real trouble! Because due to the inertia produced as a consequence of your prolonged investment here – you become less and less able to accept that things actually don’t quite ‘work’ like this – at least for you they certainly don’t! A realization that in fact would constitute a profit for you here – something you now really understood and that took you a great deal of time and effort to arrive at – so, extremely valuable in the ‘authentic world’ then, regrettably though, not so in any ‘genuine make-believe world’ 🙂

So my initial understanding of Eugene Halliday’s concept of ‘Sentient Power’  – which is an essential part of his Conceptual Framework, and was mentioned by him (using his ‘Mode of Presentation’ then) again, and again, in many of his talks and essays, was that it was an ‘a priori’ concept of his; that it was just there ‘in him from the beginning’, if you like; a sort of ‘given’ axiomic starting point for him… And in fact, the ‘sheet of white paper’ analogy that he used for this ‘infinite field of sentient power’ was often the starting point for many of his talks that he gave in Liverpool back in the 1960’s – if you’d like to check that out…

But I came to realize that this concept of the ‘Sentient Field’  emerged in him over time, and that he had in fact ‘synthesized it’ from his contemplation of the material that constituted his ‘Scheme of Inquiry’ – a gold nugget that he refined from all the crap he had to dig through if you like…

So very importantly, I would stress that this major concept of his was not ’caused’ by this material in any ‘linear’ sense…

It’s more like the way in which ‘value’ emerges from a relationship as it transforms dynamically over time… You cannot find this ‘value’ by simply examining the miriad objects, or ideas, or emotions, that are within this relationship; you cannot ‘take everything in it apart’ as it were – and then say,”Here it is, I’ve found this ‘value’ thing, it’s this bit here!” or “This ‘value’ thing is not here, so obviously it doesn’t exist.” … It’s more the case that ‘value’ … ‘becomes’ … that it ’emerges from’ … that it ‘arises above’, the relationship in some way…

But this is another (rather complex) subject entirely here, and in my opinion it does have a lot to do with understanding Modern Dialectics. So I won’t be saying any more about it here! … I would, however, be happy to go into it in more detail privately.. But I would suggest that anyone who wishes to do might first like to bone up in this area by reading one or two of those very hard to understand books 🙂

And anyway, as far as you’re concerned here, even if Eugene Halliday does happen to mention during one of his talks that, ‘All that there is is Sentient Power’ (a concept, as I say, that I believed arose from his ‘Scheme of Inquiry’), this is still, as far as you are concerned, just a piece of information that you have managed to acquire here from him. And that without you embodying this idea for yourself, this concept will lack any power to effect any real change in you. Indeed, it is far more likely that you will just appropriate this idea, to either impress others, or yourself….

Eugene Halliday’s advice to others here was that they: first develop an active language; with this language to then study major writings in science, art, religion etc., and to then present their findings to a group of like-minded people…  As I see it, developing this ‘active language’ is the crucial factor here then, and so not the studying…. And certainly not simply reading the latest trendy book (‘Quantum Reality and Life After Death’, or, ‘(Yet another) Gnostic Gospel’) and then clobbering together a cute little 45 minute talk on it – which is something almost any dim-wit could do really, isn’t it? 


If you’ve Worked on something, my experience is that it always ‘comes up’ in you when you really need it (so it’s not the same as remembering then, but more like recalling) and it also forms part of who it is that you ‘authentically’ are. But what most folk are striving to remember is who they ‘genuinely’ are – an image that they have created for themselves and that they would like others to see them as  – and so it’s just acting then. So they have to repeat their lines every night or they will simply, very quickly, forget them.


I have, over the years, become extremely cautious about involving myself with others who claim to be Working. And I will tend to (particularly during the last 20 years or so) do – to what to others might seem – an enormous amount of ‘checking-out’ before committing myself to anything more than just a temporary, and somewhat facile, social relationship here.

I’ll usually conduct what I like to call ‘One of my Little Tests’, by throwing out a few words, such as ‘Archetype’, or ‘Evil’ or ‘Death’ or ‘Religion’ or ‘Global Conspiracy’ or ‘Yoga’ (there’s loads of them) and then carefully examine any responses that surface as a consequence. Very quickly a pattern will usually emerge, and it then becomes relatively easy to see whether or not the person I am engaging with here has any real interest in: who they are; what they are; where they are; or, why they are … And go on hopefully then, to query what, in their opinion, will be their ‘next step’…. Incidentally, it’s more than OK if they say,”I don’t really know,” to that last one. 🙂

Not everyone who is Working is traveling by the same route anyway, and even if they are, then attempting to ‘go deep’ with them demands a great deal of care. Thus, even though you believe that you always ‘know’ if someone else is Working, this doesn’t confer any special qualities on this relationship necessarily, and it certainly doesn’t mean anything like, “And so you can now see into each others minds,” or that you have no need to bother discussing things, because now you both know everything there is to know about all this, or anything like that… In fact it’s one of those myths about this whole business that seeks to equate Working with belonging to some ‘special group of beings’ … You know the sort of thing – something like that ever-popular popular ‘celestial band-in-the-sky’ – the one that apparently includes John Lennon, David Bowie, Elvis Presley, Sid Vicious, George Formby, Billy Cotton, and Gracie Fields..


I am only ever really comfortable with those who are more than willing to admit a lack of ‘certainty’, but maintain that they are honestly attempting to discover what’s going on here with as much integrity that they can muster, and for as much as their time as they can manage.

But it might be that maybe we do all eventually end up in the same barrel, and then again maybe we don’t – I wouldn’t know, or even like to guess…


For me it’s all about my journey; and I would perhaps even go so far as to say that it might be about ‘our journeying’. But it has never been, for me, only ever about ‘someone else’s journey’. Because, fascinating though it might be, it’s still – in the end – just more entertainment (but perhaps of a more refined nature, if that’s what you need to float your boat).

Interestingly enough though here, others often imagine that I am ‘going deep’ with them, when actually I’m doing no such thing 🙂 … ‘Going deep’ isn’t something I do really, it’s more the case that it’s something that I am… And I wouldn’t say that it confers any advantages particularly either 🙂 Most of the time I’m deliberately trying to not ‘go deep’. In fact, normally, I’m just trying to ‘return a serve’ as simply and straightforwardly as I can, and trying not to upset others too much – usually though without much success.


An added complication here is that, in my case at least, the amount of effort required to Work is so demanding that the temptation is always there to try to find a easier approach. But I do try to hold on to the belief that I am never being tested more than I can bear – although I will readily admit that I do very often, throw my rattle out of the pram.

So I am very clear about what I am being presented with when I hear Eugene Halliday speak, or I read an essay of his, or when I examine one of his drawings or figures – which is that this material forms a portion of the ‘fruits of his labor’.. and not mine…

And thus, even though his ‘Scheme of Inquiry’ might be one that I came to adopt – the actual material that comprises this is, for the most part, completely different from his; and even if my ‘Conceptual Framework’ makes significant use of a number of his concepts, it also does not use others that many here would see as fundamental to his particular system – such as the universal meanings of ‘proto-sounds’; or the occult significance of the letters of the alphabet; or many of his views on music, or gender; and particularly where it concerns the typology and topology of – what is a major concept in my ‘Conceptual Framework’ – the ‘unconscious’… As to my ‘Mode of Presentation’ – well I hope that this is very obviously different from his.

But if it helps you in any way here, I can tell you categorically, that his ‘Scheme of Inquiry’ involved him in attempts to absorb a extremely large variety of culturally important texts, and then go on to produce copious notes from these texts by hand – which he referred to as his précis…So, in my opinion as I say, these ‘fruits’ are not just simply ‘coming from this ‘Field” in the naive sense that many I have spoken with like to imagine, but could only arise in him as a consequence of his ‘Working’ – that is, from his particular patterning of this ‘Sentient Power’ that constituted him

And so, from my perspective here, his ‘Mode of Presentation’ then, does not ‘come to be’ as a consequence of some sort of ‘spiritual sleight of hand’ on his part, or some ‘supernatural trick’, but only from his ability to ‘labor’ at his ‘Scheme of Enquiry’ and his ‘Conceptual Framework’.. This task is, necessarily, very ‘hard work’ and a great deal of it needs to be done before you can even begin to focus upon the task of actually ‘Working’ in the particular.

NOTE: I have already made a few of these précis of Eugene Halliday’s available to readers of this blog in post number 11. But here they are again:

Précis – Eugene Halliday – Hierarchy

Précis – Eugene Halliday – Islam

Précis – Eugene Halliday – Karlfried Von Durkheim

Précis – Eugene Halliday – Modern Physics

Précis – Eugene Halliday – Pseudo-Denys

Précis – Eugene Halliday – Sorcery

Précis – Eugene Halliday – Soul

Précis – Eugene Halliday – The Basics of Judaism

Précis – Eugene Halliday – The Body

Précis – Eugene Halliday – Zen

So – to give you an example – Eugene Halliday’s ‘Scheme of Inquiry’ certainly involved him attempting to absorb material from books written by, for example, writers such as Iamblichus. And what he managed to glean from this material did, I would claim, then go on to form a part of his ‘Conceptual Framework’.

But his subsequent expressed opinions (his ‘Mode of Presentation’) re, say, ‘The One’ and ‘nous’ (using this Iamblichus example here) fail to include any stated reference to the original author, or this particular form of Neo-Platonism…. Rather, Eugene Halliday presents these ideas in such a way (using his ‘Conceptual Apparatus’) that, if you didn’t know he’d studied ‘The Mysteries of the Egyptians’, you could perhaps be forgiven for thinking they had somehow magically appeared to him out of ‘thin air’, or came to him ‘from the Field’, by a process that he referred to as ‘Letting’… (Again, the latter is, of course, ‘sort of true’, at least on his account. But I would still say that his manner of presentation never satisfactorily made this clear)…

In fact there was much of what he presented that I would claim was inspired by, or originated from, various sources – and I would say that this was obvious.. And yet, as I say, there were many who thought that it was all just ‘coming through him’ in a way that very clearly did not factor in the fact that he might have come across many of these concepts before (although, as I say, clearly not in the same form)… I don’t have anything to say about whether he did or didn’t really, because to me he clearly Worked on this material. But I do believe that he was aware that those who listened to him did think of him in this way – and this I do find mildly troubling… But then again, I do believe that he did have a great sense of humor 🙂

There are also those who claim to have heard him say that he wasn’t thinking when he spoke… And I find it difficult to understand what they (or he) might have meant by that. Unless they were simply trying to say that he wasn’t just reciting something that he remembered ‘from his memory’, as it were…. Maintaining that, “He wasn’t thinking when he spoke,” is a rather clumsy, and unnecessarily obscure way of putting this in my opinion… And anyway, I’m fairly certain that the more gullible here did imagine that, when he was talking, he went into some sort of trance and perhaps did something similar to what it is that folks now like to refer to as ‘channeling’ – so just yet more trendy crap then really, in the end, I suppose … And yes … ‘tricky’ .. (yet again) .. 🙂 …


In my experience, it is entirely possible to Work on an active hermeneutic ‘Mode of Presentation’ in such a way – particularly if you use little technical language, but instead use words that are in regular common usage that you have ‘activated’ – to then go on to be able to use this seemingly ‘ordinary language’ on a ‘lay’ audience, in such a way as to demonstrate rather exciting new ideas in an extremely convincing, but essentially passive, manner.

But what happens then – particularly in the case of followers of speakers such as Eugene Halliday – is that a significant number of them will then go on to believe that they really understand him; that they have somehow ‘got it’, without ever having to engage in any ‘Scheme of Inquiry’ for themselves…. ‘Something for nothing’ then! … They just have to turn up at Eugene’s talks and ‘all will be revealed’.

Perhaps some of them will eventually become troubled though, because they cannot ever re-present his concepts in any depth to either themselves, or to others; or ‘get them to function properly, like these ideas clearly do in him’; or because they find that they have to continually go over his recordings and writings in order to ‘refresh’ their memories 🙂  … Can you see that this sort of behavior is a million miles away from ‘rendering an account’ of your own life experiences, gathered from your own particular ‘Scheme of Inquiry’?

I won’t go into my perception of this particular aspect of Eugene Halliday’s approach any further here, but would just add that, in my opinion, nothing of all this will be really understood by you in any real sense without an in-depth appreciation of yet another of Eugene Halliday’s concepts. The one that revolves around the two terms,  ‘circumscribed’ and ‘uncircumscribed’ …


Anyway … To carry on with this example of mine … I have had the following repetitive dream for a very long time now (decades)… Sometimes I will have it every night for a week or so, and then it will suddenly stop – often for very long periods …Why does that happen? Well I couldn’t say exactly. But from my own perspective I’m satisfied that I have eventually formed an extremely useful Working hypothesis about it.

I should perhaps also mention here that I have a number of these reoccurring dreams – some of which are obviously connected to each other… But just let’s just deal with this one for now.

“I find myself in the house that my wife and I bought when we were first married.

It is very small and in need of a great deal of repair. Much of it is derelict, and I need to take care when I’m moving around, but in my dream I don’t feel over-burdened, or anxious, by having to do so.

I keep on discovering new doors, rooms, and passages in this house.

Eventually, and by a somewhat torturous route, I get to what seems to be the attic, which not only seems to be enormous, but also very, very, old.

It is also very dusty. But there is a light that is shining through the holes in the roof that makes the dust sparkle.

I am now somewhere in this house then that I never suspected even existed.

Emotionally I am experiencing a positive state of amazement cum astonishment. But there is also a faint sense of trepidation present that centers around a vague suspicion that actually I might be totally lost, and so might be unable to find my ‘way back’. But I don’t formulate, or focus, upon this – not because I am reluctant to do so, but because doing so seems inappropriate somehow. And anyway, that light, which is being reflected off all the dust here, encourages me to maintain a positive frame of mind.

I am also aware that I would like this state of affairs to continue.”

That – in essence at least – is my dream. And my recalling of all the details in it that I can, together with my consequent attempts to flesh these out without embellishment if at all possible, focuses on questions such as: what it was that I was wearing; physical details of the location(s) – the state of repair, ambient temperature, if it was raining or not etc; the degree of physical comfort or discomfort that I was experiencing; my changing emotional state during this dream; details of anyone else who might have been present in the dream; what was it that I particularly ‘noticed’ – that was experienced as being ‘more present’ than something else … etc.

This ‘recalling’ and ‘fleshing out’ of mine in this way, constitutes – in part at least – my ‘Scheme of Inquiry’. At least where it concerns this dream here.

NOTE: I am well aware that there are any number of ‘interpretations’ (in the sense of Joseph’s interpretation of the Pharoah’s dream) that can be applied to this dream – some of which might surprise you. But interpreting this dream is not my major concern here at all…


What I do next arises as a consequence of my (ever evolving) ‘Conceptual Framework’.

The (if you like) ‘axiomic position’ that I start with here is that ‘All there is, is Sentient Power’. But my actual examination of this dream (a dream which is, for me therefore, an aspect of this Sentient Power) begins from what I might call my second axiom. Which is that nothing ‘transcendent’ – in the sense that anything experienced by me ‘in’ here, has actually come to me from ‘without’; that nothing actually ever ‘drops in to pay me a visit, before moving on’, as it were.

Everything, for me then, is always ‘immanent’ … or is only ever some modification or other of my consciousness (which is also an aspect of this Sentient Power, but in my case, it is circumscribed).

I do believe however that there is an external reality, but that this is, in it’s essential nature, ultimately unknowable; and that I can only inter-act with it via my relationships with particular aspects of it (these aspects would include then ‘other beings’, and also ‘events’). And that these aspects ‘ever-more come to be’ as I become more involved with them…

This external reality can ‘influence’ me as something ‘coming from without’, or ‘from out there’, and be experienced by me as anything from ‘unwelcome intruding’ to an ‘aid to progress’ – depending upon my actual relationship(s) with this particular aspect of this objective world of mine at any one particular moment… Such relationships are also dependent then, to a very large extent, upon the ‘make-up’ of my individual integument at the time… So this is what, in part at least, I mean then by my use of the term ‘external reality’…

This ‘external reality’ of mine can also be experienced by me as a place along my particular journey where I can do some Work – in order to modify my integument in such a way that it functions ever more positively to develop my potential …

It hardly needs me to add then, that as a consequence of this perspective of mine re these concepts of Eugene Halliday’s, I consider my approach to them to be more than just simply ‘an understanding’ of them, but as a definite mode of praxis for me, and one that consciously affirms my taking on board these (expanded by me) concepts of his.

As I have repeatedly stated here in this blog though, there may be other ways of approaching this for all I know. And if anyone reading this has, in fact, developed their own way of proceeding here (and is not merely reacting to what it is that I’ve written) then I would love to hear from them about this (different) mode of praxis of theirs.

Finally for this bit … I don’t believe that unless you have somehow come across these ideas of Eugene Halliday’s you will be unable to Work … Because you obviously can do so without ever having heard of him, or his ideas … (See, for example, Boehme, for more on this point if you’re interested).


If you change whatever it is that you believe the world to be, then you will change whatever it is that you believe yourself to be; and if you change whatever it is that you believe yourself to be, then you will change whatever it is that you believe the world to be .

And if you do ever come to realize this about your existence, you will now need to learn to function dialectally… Because you now know that what is going on down here is not just simply a process of merely ’causes and affects’.  


Whether you’re a fan of Saussure, or Pierce, or Wittgenstein, or Derrida, communicating with either ‘yourself’ or with ‘others in the world’ requires that you come to terms with ‘the arbitrariness of the sign’.

And although you might still suppose – at least where it concerns your own private, hermeneutic language – that you do not need to agree or disagree with others here on the particular meaning (never mind the definition) of any sign (word), because ‘what you’re saying’ is all going on here in ‘the privacy of your own mind’ – in fact you do.

Because when you talk to yourself, actually ‘someone else’ is listening… And this ‘someone else’ must either agree or disagree with you – even if you believe that this ‘someone else’ is ‘still you’…

And also – perhaps even more importantly – this is where the roots of ‘difference’; ‘the other’; and ‘division’, actually lie.

‘Random Dribbling from the Twilight World of the Undead’
by Bob Hardy
(A series of fragments from Bob Hardy’s notebooks – from the late-1970’s to date)


I believe that it is only ever my relationships with an ‘objective world’ that provide me with any ‘meaning’. And it is only this ‘meaning’ that can ever make any difference.. Or I could say – after Eugene Halliday – “It’s (only) real, if it makes a difference.” …

And so it follows for me than, that ‘nobody’, or ‘no thing’ at all, could possibly ever make a difference to me, unless I’m in a relationship either with them, or to it.

NOTE: An interesting series of very important questions for me here center around, “Is it possible to be in a relationship, and thus be effected by it, if I’m not conscious of it?” (It is – by the way)… or “What happens if I am mistaken as to the nature of a relationship here; does this mean that my subsequent inter-actions with my objective reality are ‘flawed’ in some way?” (Yes – it does) .. “How do I refer to something if I’m not in relationship with it?” (I don’t – I can only register, and then refer to, it’s affect)…

To come to grips with these question though, I believe that you first of all must appreciate the crucial difference between the meaning of the terms;: ‘sentience’; ‘reactivity’; ‘awareness’; ‘consciousness’; ‘reflexive-self-consciousness’…

For many though, these terms are often confused, or conflated. And although this might not matter that much in the course of any day-to-day chatter, if you are using these terms when you’re Working it is crucial that you appreciate the fundamental difference in meaning between them…

A whole portion of my active language is devoted to illuminating: What is, or is not, ‘real’?; What is a ‘trick’ and what is an ‘illusion’?; What process takes place in me in order for me to accept events as ‘real’?, etc.


To summarize a bit here…What is only ever happening ‘in me’ is that I am experiencing modifications of the circumscribed Sentient Power that constitutes ‘me’, and so there is never then, as I am very fond of saying, “Anyone else here in the building with me.” And thus I am – you might say – only every experiencing immanence – modifications of that circumscribed Sentient Power that constitutes ‘me’ … So I never have an experience of any ‘extra’ Sentient Power ‘manifesting’ or ‘doing stuff’ in ‘me’ – so not transcendence then – except  via these modifications of my own circumscribed being. And hence the reason for that every present possibility of ‘doubt’ then 🙂 … Eugene Halliday’s concept of a translating wave of sentient power impacting upon the outer surface of a sphere of circumscribed sentient power is a useful starting point here – but in my case, I had to initiate quite a few modifications to it very early on in order to get further (And I started doing so by constructing and examining analogies using the way in which ‘heat’ is transferred by the way. i.e. Conduction; convection; and radiation).

This idea of ‘immanence only’ seems to make some people nervous … Perhaps because it reinforces a largely negative emotional reaction to the idea of ‘being alone’ – not a reaction to this idea that I share actually.

Rather, for example, the idea that everything in this dream that I’m dealing with here is some aspect or other of myself (and that would include all the ‘other’ people who might be in it, together with the buildings, the weather, the impossible situation, the emotional states etc) – all this symbolism that is arising from my non-directed thinking then – is something that I find mind-bogglingly mysterious, magical, and amazing, and – in my case, and so more importantly – much more reasonable to believe in….

And so my investigation of the manner in which I communicate with this ‘otherness’ that I am creating in this day-to-day waking world of mine that I then ‘find myself in’, by acts of seeing; smelling; touching; tasting; hearing; reasoning about; emoting over, etc. – and that are all properties of this ‘Sentient Power’ – is as much as I need to be dealing with … It’s far more than I can handle actually 🙂 …

I mean, “What is the purpose of all this?” … (And please note, that’s a completely different question from, “What is my purpose of all this?”)


It might help you here if you could appreciate that, for me, even my ‘seeing something’ brings me – immediately that I do so – into relation with it. This in fact was another of my Work exercises. That is, to develop the ability to ‘See’ –  as opposed to just ‘see’.

To appreciate how I came to this idea though, you first really have to become aware that there are any number of things that are present in your ‘field of view’ all of the time that your eyes are open, and as a consequence of this, that it is, in actual fact then, possible to both ‘see’ and ‘See’.

Developing the ability to ‘See’ (with a capital ‘S’) hinges around the concept that the sense of sight, for me, (and all the other senses actually) is essentially irrational. In that the sense of sight ‘sees everything’ without discriminating, or focusing – obvious to you if you have ever observed a new baby attempting to gain ‘control’ of its own vision, I would say. …

So ‘seeing’ – in the sense that I mean it here – requires the ability to instantly initiate the act of consciously ‘looking at’, or the ‘bringing to be’ or ‘selecting’ some particular in that field of vision, and also incidentally, at the same time, of excluding everything else (much easier to get a handle on this idea by using the sense of hearing and imagining that you are focusing on that conversation that you want to over-hear ‘over there’ in some crowded, noisy room, while you are being spoken to by someone else, and have to converse with them).

This ‘seeing’ then, is for me, a purely rational process – in that it is one requiring an increasingly conscious act of discrimination the more that focussing upon some ‘particular’ within the ‘field of view’, is required by the looker… But – and here’s the interesting thing – although this sounds very complicated to manage, it’s something that everyone learns to do before they can even talk!

Why then have I brought it up here? … Because it provides a great metaphor for understanding what Working is about. The usual pitfall here is that ‘Seeing’ as opposed to ‘seeing’ involves cultivating the ability to ‘focus better’ or developing some sort of ‘occult micro-vision’… It isn’t anything like that! … ‘Seeing’ with a capital ‘S” is the ability to observe yourself ‘seeing’; to be aware in the moment that you are doing so… even if you’re nearly as blind as a bat!

Working on ‘sight’ (‘Seeing’) then, is practicing the act of ‘seeing’ – which, as I say, is almost always confused with ‘concentrating upon’ (or ‘focusing’) on some particular object of interest in your field of view –  which is still just ‘seeing’.

Actually, Working on the senses is another subject entirely, so I’ll leave you there with just that brief introduction, and carry on with the example of dreaming/waking.

And finally for this bit here.. And you might find this disappointing … a lot of what is actually ‘Working’ – particularly on your senses – is no big deal really.. And you can do simple things like ‘Seeing’ any time that you want. Developing these abilities won’t get you very far here though – so perhaps it would be better for me to refer to this mode of Working as being one that begins with a letter ‘w’ that is somewhere between a small case and a large case… For the time being anyway 🙂


The next thing that I attempt to sort out?

To what extend can the events in this dream be subsumed under a series of dynamic, simple, causal, set of relations… For example, “I am climbing higher up this long flight of stairs here because I’m lifting my feet up one after the other, and as a direct consequence I feel a bit weary” or, “I am getting higher up this set of stairs here because I can levitate and the ability to do so is raising all sorts of conflicting emotional states in me.”… And to what extent can the events in this dream be subsumed under the aegis of an emergent system. For example,”What are the factors that went into determined my evolving emotional state in this dream – as in my being aware that there were two events in the dream that gave rise to a third, and my emotional state moved in a direction that could not have been realized from only one of those two prior events… And so was I then ‘being headed’ towards this emergent emotional state purposely in this way, or was it somehow a random consequence?”

Now here we can easily see a real problem with my attempt to formulate a ‘Method of Presentation’ that will suffice for me to inform others as to what it is that I’m up to here. Which is, that unless they already appreciate the concept of the ’emergent system’ (part of my ‘Conceptual Framework’ then) – at least as it applies to the simpler case of these changing emotional states of mine mentioned above – what will happen now is that more and more of any little ‘presentation’ of mine here, will very quickly become increasingly ‘passive’ to those who are listening to it… And although they might, from moment to moment, claim to be ‘following me’ and to ‘sort of‘understand’ what I’m on about – they will very soon forget any ‘meaning’ they have temporarily given to what it is that I am saying. Because what I’m presenting to them is neither ‘grounded’ in them experientially, nor can it be understood by them in any depth – due to their lack of an adequate ‘Conceptual Framework’.


Anyway 🙂 …To go back a little to this example of mine. Notice that, in my case then, that it’s the, “Why is this happening … at all?’ that predominates, and not, say, the ‘What does it mean?”. And importantly, for me, this different approach to understanding something in all this here constitutes a different ‘journey’ for me… Do you see that?

So then, for me at least, the initial question here is ‘Why?’ … That is: What is it about us as beings (as circumscribed modes of this Sentient Power) that brings this state to be?… Does it happen to artichokes? … Does it happen to kangaroos?… If it does, does it happen in the same way? … There are literarily hundreds of questions you could think up here….And without a system, I believe you will do just that – go round in circles asking an unending number of, in the end, unconnected or unrelated questions.


Thus – and problematically so – which direction do you go off in then? … Well I can only tell you that I believe you’re free to choose…

What particular perspective(s) do you focus on, and which do you ignore? … Well, I believe you’re free to choose them as well… 🙂

The question “What constitutes the ‘wheat’ and what constitutes the ‘chaff’?” here is, perhaps, a good way of looking at this, because it implies that you have to separate out these two components for yourself… Which of course implicitly implies they are initially ‘present together’ here… But we don’t all have the same ‘chaff’ and we don’t all have the same ‘wheat’. However we can have the same value systems of morality, or ethics, and so we can metaphorically use money (‘talents’ say) in order to clarify any ideas we might have about any increase in potential that we may have achieved (a profit then) in order to present our experiences at least to ourselves. So ‘chaff’ then is, to all of us here ‘worthless’, and ‘wheat’ is, to all of us here ‘a profit’.

You have to Work in order to refine as much of what you have that you can, and you can only do that by gathering together – using your ‘Scheme of Inquiry’ – as much unrefined material as you can, initially. So you could say that, “To begin with, it’s rather a messy business, but things eventually begin to clear up as you begin to Work and separate out what is valuable (to you, here and now) from the rest.” …


I don’t believe that at some point, this requirement  to Work that I experience will ever cease. Neither do I believe that becoming ‘totally self-reflexive’; or ‘getting rid of my ego’; or ‘reaching a higher level of consciousness’; or ‘being saved’, or embracing any one of a host of ‘New-Age clap-trap quick-fix ideas’ out there, will ever make Working any ‘easier’.. Looking for this easier route though, is how I experience most people’s efforts here …

Here’s a rule for you then – ‘If you do find ‘Working’ easy, then you must be doing it wrong’.

For me … We grow old … and then we die .. And this whole business is such a profound mystery to me that if there was one state of being that I experience which convinces me there is some hope, then that would be when I am brought to the place where I can appreciate just how essentially unknowing all this ‘to be from moment to moment’ business actually is for me… The relief that I experience, in those rare moments in my life when this happens, is like nothing else.  Nonetheless, and paradoxically perhaps, I have still always had an unshakable belief in purpose – which I came to refer to, sometime in my early thirties, as Working…

Others, may of course, do exactly as they wish to with their lives… It’s in the rules down here anyway… 🙂

To be continued …

December 2016

Portland, Oregon.



Here now, is the original first half of this post…

Sections of the email that I received are also included here in italics. I have expanded my reply to it a great deal in an attempt to clarify my position re Working and ‘matters Halliday’, in the hope that this will prove useful.

 IF, we are on similar wave-lengths, then you won’t mind engaging with the following ‘conundrums’ which arose as I read your most recent blog. Obviously it seeks to continue and summarize what went before, but without re-reading the last 20 posts (time being of the essence!), your ‘argument’ here does little to clarify what it is that we are aiming for with this ‘Working’ business.

Well, first of all, I would like to make it clear that it has never been my intention to present some form or other of ‘argument’ in this blog – at least in the sense that I’m defending any particular, intractable position of mine against others here.

Neither was it ever my intention that these posts of mine – even if read in numerical order – would constitute some manner or other of ‘causal chain’ – if only because they clearly do wander around a bit. ..

But apologies if what you have read here comes across like this… And I do admit that I can easily see how you might have come to this conclusion 🙂 …

I am, rather, you might say, “Always open to suggestions.”…

I should also like to add – just for the record – that I am not attempting to give my opinion here, as to who it is that I believe Eugene Halliday ‘was’ (such as a 20th Century ‘guru’, or anything like that) either.

What I have been attempting to do in these postings of mine, is tender an account of sorts re the consequences of my interactions with, what I consider to be, a number of major concepts that are contained in Eugene Halliday’s material output.

So my endeavor here is then, I would claim. far more of an ‘expansionist’ one – in that the perspective that I did eventually arrive at, ‘arose’ out of my attempts to engage experientially with this material. In other words, I didn’t listen to recordings of Eugene Halliday talks by starting with ‘number one’, and then go through them ‘in order’ – such that I was persuaded in some way re the ‘truth’ of them by the time I got to, say, the twenty-fourth one – which contained additional ‘information’ sufficient for me to say something like, “I would never have got all this without listening to that little bit of this particular recording, because without it, it’s obviously impossible!” … In fact, the penny only started to drop when I began to see that what he was ‘basically saying’ was contained in its entirety in many (but not all) of his individual talks. However I didn’t see this until I’d immersed myself in quite a few of them.

Providing some account or other of this ‘journey’ of mine is, I believe, the only purpose – where it concerns the products of someone else’s endeavors – that I (or anyone else here for that matter) could legitimately maintain with any integrity, at least out here in a public arena.

So I’m not trying to ‘persuade’ anyone here that the result of my ‘journeying’ – that is, what it is that came to have meaning for me here – is the unequivocal meaning of some particular concept or other of Eugene Halliday’s.

Also of primarily importance to me (at least when I started out with this blog) was to discover if this material actually had any meaning for others. And if it did, then what might that meaning be? …

My own take on Eugene Halliday is that he was (what I refer to as) ‘Working’. Which, in his case, I would claim was the attempt to perceive, to experience, ‘being here in the now’ from one unifying (axiomic) position; or (as he would, perhaps, put it) ‘governing concept’. To whit, ‘All that there is, is Infinite, or Absolute, Sentient Power’…. And that he was doing so, in part, by producing (what I refer to as) ‘texts’ that served to demonstrate this ‘governing concept’ of his, and thus functioned as a witness to his affirmation here; or that came to  constitute the ‘Fruits of is Labor’, you might say..


Regarding your use of the word ‘we’ here, where it concerns ‘Working’.

I would have to know something more about your side of things here. I’m not aware that you have ever claimed to be (in some way) ‘Working’. And I have never maintained that what I refer to as ‘Working’ is an activity that has to be engaged in by anyone else. Unless, that is, they claimed to be, “A pupil of Eugene Halliday’s,” or to have, “Sat at the feet of the master,” etc.. or something like that . …

I do claim in my blog that I believe Eugene Halliday was  ‘Working’ – but have gone to some lengths to maintain that this is only how I see what it was that he was doing, and that I fully appreciate others might disagree with me entirely… So .. I engage with Eugene Halliday’s material, and I conclude that what he was doing was what I refer to as ‘Working’. I also understood him to be clearly, at least suggesting to others, that they also Work (see his note to that effect at the end of his ‘Rules for Ishval’) – which is how I subsequently came to innocently ask the question “So how did anyone else get on here who claims to have been involved in the things that Eugene Halliday suggested that they do?” And why I was so surprised by the response – or I should say (more accurately) by the almost total lack of response.


My response to anyone who happens to put the word ‘Work’ and ‘we’ in the same sentence came, almost invariably, to be my “Who’s this ‘we’ you’re talking about? … I do hope that you’re not including me here!” position… 🙂 .. In fact I don’t ever recall ever having found anyone else who was Working to ‘join-up’ with – at least in the way that I would claim that I am..


And I wouldn’t say that this ‘Working’ (in the sense that I use the term) necessarily constitutes a ‘group’ activity anyway… Primarily, because my experience at attempting to suspend any judgment here and ‘join in’ with what others seemed to be doing when they claimed to be either ‘Working’ themselves, or doing something that they believed was the same thing, always – in the end – seemed to back-fire on me, and seemed to me to be only ever productive of – what I came to refer to later as – an ‘inertic indulgence’. That is, a group of activities that were far more likely to produce some form of ‘consensus reality’, which very soon trapped those involved here in some pseudo-‘spiritual’-esoteric social space, and effectively blocked the possibility of them making any further progress.

A form of social activity then, where its members quickly come to invest most of their energy in supporting each other in their various attempts to rationalize, either their own inertic tendencies, or their participation in some crazy pseudo-esoteric cult; or some form or other of calisthenics – usually with a pseudo-Indian name with the word ‘yoga’ tagged on the end of it;  or in their support of some recent, fashionable (batty) New-Age ideology.


I’ll just add here that I have never viewed Eugene Halliday as having ‘belonged’ to any group – at least in quite the same way that the majority of others who claim to have been involved here clearly seemed to think that he was.

I do believe that Eugene Halliday was advising others to ‘Work’ though – at least in the sense that I use the term. And, it seemed to me that he frequently suggested to various groups of interested listeners, an extremely straightforward and practical way of at least making some attempt to go about it… And so I suppose it would be reasonable that these listeners could collectively come to view themselves as a ‘we’. Particularly if they turned up at meetings for years on end…  But I have been unable to find any real evidence that this ‘we’ here ever developed into anything more really than just a ‘social group’. And the group meetings that I understood Eugene Halliday to have organized, and that I attended during week-days were certainly not Working in any sense that I came to understand the word. (Interestingly he handed the running of these groups over to others not long after they started. He would drop in on them from time to time, presumably to ‘lend his support’)… In fact most of those who attended didn’t appear to have the faintest idea as to what it was that they were supposed to be doing, or what was going on in general really.


Speaking for myself here. When I saw Eugene Halliday giving a talk; or listened to one of his recordings; or read any of his essays, I was primarily interested in what he was doing, and how it came about that he was doing it (and also – as a fully paid-up deconstructionist – what was it that he was not doing) … and stuff like that… And thus, not so much then about the ‘subject content’ here (a great deal of which I will say that I did find extremely useful, but then again, a great deal of which I didn’t) but how he came to it… And the process by which he produced this material is really all that I have ever maintained a prolonged, deep, and abiding interest in.

Anyway, the generic term I use – that is, what I came to call what I believe he did – is ‘Working’.

I believe that Eugene Halliday Worked alone. But whether though that was from choice (an aspect of his technique here then) or circumstance (he simply made as much use as he could of what was ‘to hand’, ‘in the now’) I really wouldn’t like to say.


Back to this ‘we’ thing again though..  I actually do believe that some form of ‘mutual’ support is possible where it concerns attempts to Work, particularly from a life-partner, or a close friend. But that in order to be able to offer this support; or be able to take advantage of it, those making these attempts must crucially – from the outset – be prepared to, “..show me yours, and I’ll show you mine.”

Regrettably though, it seems to me that one of the major motives for becoming a ‘we’ here, is that it enables many of those taking part to legitimately ‘hide in the crowd’ and wait for an endless stream of others to ‘go first’.. (“No Please! .. I insist! .. After you!”)  – And so, perhaps then, with a bit of luck they will be able to avoid ever ‘having a go’ themselves.. (“Oh look everyone! … We’ve run out of time again! … Sorry about that! … We’ll try to get those who didn’t step up this week to have a go next week… But we really do have to must move on here… Could we bring our empty cups back please” … Sighs of relief.). But now they have the delicious possibility of convincing themselves that they have, by their own good offices, got themselves ‘in the right place, and with the right crowd’. And then, by continually  deferring what the hell it was that they were actually going there for in the first place, they enter a sort of ‘Twilight Zone’ where they come to firmly believe that they must have in fact, ‘done the business’, because they’ve ‘been at it so long’, as it were…. Tragically, it is only when they eventually look back (if in fact they ever do) over those last couple of decades, that they might come to see that they’ve just been ‘marking time’… Regrettably though, most won’t.

But even if every single ‘we’ in this group are all, by some major fluke, in a rush to jump to the front of the queue and ‘be the first to show it all’. Crucial to any understanding of these ‘ritual relationships’  – first of all – is the appreciation that there is yet another major negative aspect here. Which is that most of those who turn up have no real idea of who it is that they really are to start with, and will instead make ‘genuine’ attempts to present each other with endless modified versions of the image of who it is that they happen to believe themselves to be, or that they like to show to others, at that particular moment… To (sort of) keep taking their wallets out of their back pockets in order to show the others involved here an endless series of snaps of someone else.

But most importantly, in the end – even if what is required here is successfully achieved – any thoughts, or feeling, or emotions, or actions, that subsequently arise as a consequence of this ‘revealing’, are only of relevance if they serve to move anyone involved here forward (even one would be OK).

So it’s not about ‘we’ really… ; or of gaining entrance to that mysterious ‘esoteric’ group’; or ‘arguing’; or ‘winning’; or ‘persuading’; or ‘negating’; or ‘disagreeing’; or ‘debating’; or ‘holding an opinion’, but only ever about being presented with the opportunity to ‘take another step’…

And notice that I’m not claiming here that taking this next step is what will certainly be done, necessarily. Only that you have succeeded in placing yourself in a position where you believe there is now an opportunity to do so… … And at this point then, it’s clearly not a ‘we’ thing at all … Anyway 🙂


I don’t believe that there’s any particular methodology that ‘we should all be aiming to apply here either. That is, there is no ‘one size fits all’ then. But in my particular case, if it helps:

  • I believe you need to have a particular over-riding sense of purpose – such that you can eventually come to realize that having a ‘profound interest in’, or deciding that something would be ‘a very good thing to ‘attempt to do’, or ‘to live by’, is just not enough here… A much more stoic approach is needed in my opinion then (although I admit that this might just be me, but somehow I don’t think it is).
  • You also have to recognize that rationality – while obviously an excellent and essential tool for ‘understanding stuff’ – is only one half of what it is that is needed here; the other half then, being irrational. And that a major portion of what it is that you are attempting here, is the transcendence of both of these two approaches in your dealings with the objective world (the rational and the irrational) such as to bring them together into ‘dynamic balance’, in such a way that you are always ‘becoming’….
    If that sounds a bit too cryptic, try, “Becoming someone who can transcend these two aspects of their objective world, and see them as giving rise to something further.” … But I suppose that sounds just as cryptic … Now I come to think about it .. 🙂
    In my experience, the rational aspect of what I like to think I’m doing can always be contained in some form of text; but the irrational part cannot. This is easier to see in a shared experience, where any effort to ‘trap’ this experience ‘in the now’ (in language say) is always experienced by the parties involved as inadequate (from mildly to hopelessly so – even if one of them perhaps resorts to the reciting of one of Shakespeare’s sonnets, or throws in the odd Latin quote {And why is it that if somebody says something in a dead language that translates into English as, “A face like a sack full of spanners,” there’s an opinion that it is somehow more ‘worthy’?} … An approach that I’ve never been able to understand personally, because it always seemed like cheating to me – although others seem to quite like indulging in it) … Anyway ‘something is always left out here then’, if I could put it like that…
    Thus, what I am saying here, is that any complete and rational ‘summarizing’ of the various states experienced here – particularly when we reach the level of a really intimate relationship – is impossible in principle…
    However, the spontaneous presentation of a bunch of roses at precisely the right time, can ‘do the trick’ here – but only ever ‘in the moment’, and only ever, ‘for the moment’… If you see what I mean  …
    Think of that question, “What do you mean when you say you love me?” ….And then think of that same question – with the addition now of some comments – something like this … And see what you think.

“What do you mean when you say you ‘love me’? … … Oh! … Wait a minute! … I’m sorry! … You gave me an exhaustive answer to that particular question last week! … So I already know exactly what it is that you are going to say! … Don’t I? …  I’m so-oo sorry!!  … And I do so-oo apologize for momentarily forgetting, and thus risking the possibility of wasting your time! … Can you ever forgive me darling?” .


There have to be questions… You have to develop your own unique questions. Questions that no one else would ask in quite the same way that you do… Questions that are always there, and that come to constitute a large part of who it is that you ‘authentically. are, and what it is that you do…And you have to really know what these unique questions of yours mean, you have to develop that active language of yours in order to really ‘nail’, to pin, your question  ….They are the why of your Work… And I also believe that it is only by Working that you will ever find any answers to them… So I could say that this we is only, in the end a we when all the individuals that make it up have come to the place where they can all formulate ‘authentic questions’ – even if these questions differ… A bit heavy that, I suppose, but there it is 🙂

It would probably help you further here if I provided some detailed biographical information about the way in which my own efforts to move forward were reinforced, or augmented, by what I saw as the efforts of a number of other people (including Eugene Halliday) … But again, to do that properly would take a great deal of time and so it must – for the time being at least – be something for later.



I am presuming that you are writing this out of a loving concern for ‘Action’ in your fellow journeymen, who show no signs of ‘putting the plug in the socket’ shall we say?


Not really … but thanks!

I’m not really that lovingly concerned about what it is that others are doing, I have enough going on with what it is that I’m trying to do… But I’d probably get a lot more Christmas cards if I did..  🙂

I’m actually just looking for others who might be Working, and trying to clarify to myself (and any others here) what I have been and am still, attempting to do.  And I’m also placing on record what it is that others who claim some association with Eugene Halliday, seem to have been doing from my perspective.

If we have a Governing Concept at all, then we have either idolized it or are not understanding it.

The simplest reply here would be for me to say that I’ve never actually met anyone else who has made any claim to the effect that they have a ‘governing concept’. Although one or two have trotted out the occasional ‘motto’… In fact I have never met anyone who has claimed that they make use of a ‘system’ (in the sense that I use the term – and which is also the sense in which I believe Eugene Halliday used it) either.

So it would be safer for me to say here that I don’t know. And that what I have attempted to do in this blog re the concept of a ‘governing concept’ is to point out some of the problems that I have experienced in attempting to formulate, and subsequently Work, with what I believe was the one that I make use of.

Perhaps I could add here though, that if this ‘governing concept’ is employed only in the production of a ‘genuine’ response, then probably (regrettably) the answer to your question here – from my perspective at least – would be, “Yes. It has indeed been idolized, or at the very least it has not been understood.” … But then perhaps not so much ‘idolized’, but more like, “What a great idea! I’ll give that a try just as soon as I can get round to it,” … And not so much ‘not understanding’ then, but more like a process of de-contextualizing or ‘trimming’ Eugene Halliday’s material, such that it then magically appears to fit quite nicely (or near enough) with their present lifestyle… And so all that really needs to be done here then is just a little bit of tweaking … And also perhaps some minor spring cleaning… … So ‘no need to make a fuss’ then..

If it is employed in the production of an authentic response however, then most of the time a ‘governing concept’ is far more likely to be experienced as a self-imposed limitation that can often be really irritating… This is because when Working ‘authentically’ the major purpose of your governing concept is to act as a guide, and also a limit to your endeavors…

As your involvement with your ‘governing concept’ grows though, this growth will be experienced as an expansion of the limits of the application of this term (as Eugene Halliday would put it) and as a direct result of this you will experience a real ‘increase’ in power (or – to put it another way – you will realize an actual profit, or an increase in ‘talents’, if you like).

Thus, if you’re really serious about your attempts to Work, your Governing Concept will function something like your very best friend.

If this isn’t what happens, then I would say that you must be doing it wrong. 🙂

I seem to remember in a previous post, that you were very emphatic about the difference between and the correct usage of the terms ‘genuine’ and ‘authentic’, vis-a-vis active and passive language.

I would like to stress here that, primarily, it’s in my own usage of these terms that I am ‘emphatic’ about  – I don’t particularly care how anyone else uses them really, except where it relates to their personal elaboration of Eugene Halliday’s material – in which case I would probably be very interested. And I only offer my perspective on these two words here in order to perhaps assist those who will (in their more unguarded moments) confess to not having got very far in all this. And so then, viewing ‘Work’ in this way – from the perspective of these two words that is – might help them here … Then again, maybe it won’t ….

So the elaboration of these two words here in this blog comes about because they are intimately connected with my own particular approach to Working, which is intimately connected to my understanding of the terms ‘active’ and ‘passive’ – and maybe not at all to anyone else’s understanding of them..


This might help. I am, say, attempting to create more ‘meaning’ in my use of the two words ‘genuine’ and ‘authentic’. I now consider the word ‘individual’, and then look at two further words connected with it… like this

  • ‘Individualist’ (and so ‘individualism’). This is a word I would use with ‘genuine’ .. the development of our own particular traits, such that we might become a ‘rugged individualist’ for example.. Changes then, in who we are, and – predominating here – how we are perceived by others ’in the world’
  • ‘Individuation’ – the process of working on ourselves as a totality – warts and all – through the medium of relationships – which are the magic ingredient in our lives, and the only way by which we can achieve any  real transformation here, and not just change, in my opinion.

Clearly however, there is some overlap here, and this is where I believe you must start – but if you want these words to be really ‘active’ for you, then you must involve yourself in a contemplation of them that is exclusively centered around your actual experiences with them… To ‘bring them to life’ then, if you like…

This will bring you to the limit of the application of these two terms as they apply to you ‘in the moment’ … So you can now say something (if only to yourself) like “When I say these two words, I mean this.” And perhaps go on to say to others, “What do you mean when you use these two terms?” … This will allow you to see whether or not the person you are talking with has done any Work on these words, or knows hardly anything about their meaning at all (and by ‘hardly anything’ I include their definition and etymology of it – which I consider to be only a reasonably clear starting point here).

That is, these words carry only enough meaning for them such that they ‘sort of’ understand any conversation that they might be having where they might hear, or perhaps use, one or both of these words.. For example, “I think Graham Norton is a genuine person.”; and, “I think that’s an authentic ‘Beano’ comic there. But that other one … that ‘Dandy’? … It’s only a photo-copy! … It’s a fake, mate!”


This might also help… Initially, if you only try to use one of these words deliberately, when you can, in some situation or other. (As in , ‘I’ll try and get the word ‘genuine’ into as many conversations as I can, as many times as I can, for the next week … So that I can get used to it,” – sort of thing.) Then I would say that there’s a good chance that you will, not very long after doing so, forget anything of value you might have picked up here … But if you tell yourself instead, that you have to decide which of these two words to use – and tell yourself why you do use one over the other, then you will begin to see some sort of relationship between them, and this will make them active – because there will now be a perceived (experiential) dynamic between them (a ‘Yes’ and a ‘No’, that is) that you can sense between them – the little dance that they now do together, the little pattern they now make in your head, if you like. And this pattern can only come ‘to be’ by making use of that limited Sentient Power you have at your disposal, which you have now actively willed here to become tied-up in this dynamic pattern…

However, that’s not the end of it’, because it will now need ‘tending to’ –  otherwise it will very quickly become choked with weeds… The more you get here, the more response-ability you have, because it’s only you that can do the ‘looking after’ here 🙂

… So my further advice is always to try to work on two related terms at the same time, that way you will begin to see what Eugene Halliday’s ‘limits of the application of terms’ really means …. for you… And how it is that you need to ‘switch terms’ in certain situations; or even find that it’s possible to use the two of them. Because these two terms will sort of ‘shade into’ each other due to where and what it is that you are doing at the particular time,.


Here’s a bit more about these two words.

Becoming truly (or fully) ‘authentic’ is my way of providing some sort of ‘umbrella-word’ as to what it is I’m experiencing down here. And so my claim to be attempting to center on my ‘authentic being’ is my way of expressing the idea that I’m struggling to be ‘on my way’ as much as I am able, and that part of my problem is that I’m divided – in the main – into who I am ambitious to be – that’s my ‘genuine’ self, the one that wants to save the world, if you like; and my ‘authentic’ me, who needs a lot of Working on….

And what is that all about for me in a little more personal detail?

Well – as a Christian – I need a couple of words to imagine two forms of being that provide meaning for how I feel about: a) what it’s like to be ‘having a go’ here (my version of the ‘imitation of Christ’ if you like) and; b) what I’m doing most of the rest of the time (which is usually naughty stuff; but occasionally might be ‘nice’ – particularly if I’m after something).

These two words are ‘authentic’ and ‘genuine’ …

I believe that there is only ever one representative, truly ‘authentic-all-the-way-down’ ideal human-being in any particular culture; in any particular aion, or that functions efficiently for any particular ‘zeitgeist’. And, as a European, that is for me is ‘The’ (the definite article here with the capital ‘T’ to remind me) Christ … And all the rest of us are as it were, in the end, failures for one reason or another.. Including all those ‘Saints’ and Martyrs’ (and definitely Mr Halliday then), however magnificent the effort.

Well… So what? …Because if Christ was ‘God incarnate’ (and that’s only just a couple of words by the way – and you really do need to clarify to yourself what this short two-word phrase might mean to you. Clue – this would definitely not mean someone who could part the waters of the Red Sea; or change water into wine; or pull a rabbit out of an empty hat) … Anyway, to continue, if Christ was ‘God incarnate’ somehow, then doesn’t he have an unfair advantage here?

Well no, he doesn’t really – at least not down here, as I see it, he doesn’t.

How do I arrive at that conclusion? … Well, here’s three reasons.  1) Christ’s ruminating in the garden over what he must do, before ‘giving it up’ to the Romans; 2). His having to take little rests when he was lugging his cross up the hill; 3). His cry from the cross re ‘being forsaken’ … These three ‘states’ that he experienced here makes him appreciably human for me..And that is the crucial thing in this whole scenario – I don’t care too much about the ‘God incarnate’ thing (because I don’t really know what those ‘organized religious’ mean when they say stuff like this – they seem to always mean ‘magic-man’ to me) but, “I do the Work of my Father,” I can get… Because in the sense that they can both do the same thing, I can see the meaning of ‘I and my Father are one’ when that is going on.. But if they were both doing it all the time this would mean to me that they were essentially the same and that would be a duality… But they’re not – because one of them is ‘part human’.

Interestingly here… What is this, “My Father Works..” all about?  (… “Sorry! … Can’t stop for a chat right now mate! …I’ve still got loads of Work to do.”) … Is there then, ‘something’ (let’s say, ‘creation’ for convenience here) unfinished in some real sense… Is it still then a ‘Work in progress’?… Is that what this ‘purpose’ thing is all about? (No space here to write more about this, but this is yet another very interesting aspect of all this for me 🙂 …)

A useful metaphor for me here is ‘Light’, where ‘full of light’… which (like Boehme) I would claim  is a state that ‘covers’ the darkness – a darkness which would be experienced when the light goes out (which is often the Human Condition) and that ‘comprehends the light not’ … As in, “Hang on a mo’, I’m just gonna turn this light out, to see what the dark looks like.”

Tripping up down here – even if it’s only once – means that an attempt has to be made to get back up.. Which means that something needs to be done (a decision needs to be made) … which is what we humans appear to be about.

So in order for me to believe Christ was human, I need to see that he had an awareness of the darkness here – which he needed then to overcame.


But I would also have to say here that for me, this God does not decide. That is, there is no “Oh heck! What am I going to do here now?” going on. Because God is ‘All light’ and so, gets the big picture immediately then. (And, in Christ’s case that would also be the case for a lot more of the time (important word here – that ‘time’) than the rest of us, and is what I refer to as ‘being awake’)… But there must be a point at which we see his Humanity, his striving, because we need to, in order to form any relationship with Him. Otherwise it would be a bit like trying to be Spiderman, or Superman… Interestingly though, the way we have been trained to see this culturally by church and state, it’s the ‘human’ part that always does the letting down (but not by as much if you happen to be the Pope or the Prince of Wales, say, apparently) …

And see, that’s another bit of this that I’m not on board with here really. In fact there are a some of us who think there’s something that might not quite right about the Head Honcho   … 🙂


So for me there has to be an experience in us that informs us that even for Him it wasn’t all just a ‘stroll in the park’ – and that, in act, he Worked on overcoming this darkness – even when it threatened to overwhelm Him…. He was Working ceaselessly then.. And those nails in his hands and feet were in fact just as much a ‘big oww-ee’ for him as they would be for anyone else – except for perhaps Spiderman or Wolverline.


Finally on this bit. Even if it seems to you that I am being far too emphatic, remember that you are reading a text from me here, it is not the actual experience itself .. I am not debating an idea … I am attempting to describe a state – which I find frustrating sometimes and that, even at best, is extremely elusive to pin down… And it doesn’t really matter in the end if I can’t present it as clearly as I experience it … It’s about the trying. If it was ‘no trouble’ – all that ‘just ‘let’ it come in from the ‘field’ rubbish,  it just wouldn’t be worth doing .. Nothing would be revealed … The light wouldn’t flicker… It wouldn’t be Work… It would just be the illusion of Work… As far as I’m concerned.


In this current post, the thrust of your ‘concern’ is spelt out near the end of the post, when you write, “ultimately this means, (at least as far as I’m concerned) that there are no ‘universal meanings’…..” To be consistent here, would you not have to allow that others may use these terms according to their own allocated meaning, which must then, be equally valid, given that you are not interested in the …”definition of, or etymological root” etc, and firmly place the stress on ‘You must do the necessary Work’, …”only you are able to initiate a process, and then subsequently involve yourself in it, such that it will give your life any meaning down here” ?

Exactly. But the problem here (where it concerns Eugene Halliday’s material particularly) is that I’ve never met anyone who’s ever been prepared to do that. That is – tell me what it (never mind any ‘Universal’) means to them… No one has ever said to me anything like, “Well this is what it’s actually like for me, this is what goes on; these are the surprises; this is how I ended up a couple of times; this is really hard for me; I don’t really know where to begin; I never seem to be able to stick at it; I suspect I’ve gone way of track; I never imagined that doing this would take me here; It doesn’t seem to be affecting others like this,… etc. etc.” It’s like talking to someone who has never actually been in the water, but has accumulated endless ideas and anecdotes about swimming; professes that swimming is their abiding interest; that they’ve met Tarzan, and – where it concerns any attempt by you to tell them what swimming is actually like for you – immediately starts insisting that what you say either couldn’t possibly have any validity – because Tarzan didn’t say it first, or that you’re ‘doing it all wrong’ … And yet there you are standing in front of them, in your swimming trunks, dripping wet, and panting. … (OK… So – not a pretty sight then 🙂 ) …

And yes! … ‘others may use these terms according to their own allocated meaning, which must then, be equally valid’ … Of course I do! And also that I am free to accept or reject these meaning that others give… But be aware that I believe many out there have little, or next to no, meaning in their lives – even though they might have heaps of ‘other stuff’.

Having earlier explained (in this same post) that “Working then, which is a process whereby one is (not simply accomplishing tasks but) attempting to ‘become’ something”…. What is the ‘something’ that we are trying to ‘become’?

First of all, irrespective of: whatever you believe it is that you’re doing: whatever it is that you are actually doing; whatever it is that you’d like to be doing; whatever you don’t want to do; whatever it is that someone else is making you do; etc. etc., like it or not, you are always ‘becoming’ something … anyway…

And you are certainly becoming older, and you’re certainly going to die…

And there are also a myriads of things that you will never become – such a giraffe; or a bunch of chrysanthemums; or a nuclear bomb shelter; or a song.

And so then, if you’re going to ‘become’ something anyway – what’s the big deal here?

I’m going to say that the most important word in this sentence What is the ‘something’ that we are trying to ‘become, is that word ‘trying’  Here is that same sentence with this word changed: What is the ‘something’ that we are going to ‘become’?; What is the ‘something’ that we are having to ‘become’?What is the ‘something’ that others want me to ‘become’? … Can you see what I mean?

I’m saying that the word ‘trying’ here is the one that has to become an active part of your language (For me, by the way – if this was my sentence – the word would be ‘striving’)  …  … In the same way that, in the term ‘All that there is, is Sentient Power’ – the important word for me here is that ‘is’… either one will do).

Anyway… What are you trying to become by Working then? … That would ‘your authentic self’, instead of your ‘genuine’ self, which is that being you are continually attempting to present to the world for whatever reason (You believe that you are a Roman Centurion say, and that you have lots of very important functions that you clearly just cannot abandon… Can you? … I mean – be reasonable for Christ’s sake! … 🙂  ) … And even for what you imagine is for a ‘very good’ reason (like devoting yourself to some charitable cause or other – a method much favored by pop and film stars; and also for those with too much money, or time, on their hands); or something you have come to believe is for the very best of reasons (Eugene Halliday would ask you though, “Good for what, or for who, exactly?)…

And before you think I’m against this sort of behavior, I will tell you that I am most definitely not, I indulge in it myself. But I would add that this behavior is almost always NOT constitutive of Working… It’s just something you can do in order to oil that conscience of yours – as (hopefully) you come to see how you are connected to so much of what is going on in the world that is dreadful – and how helpless you are – by yourself – to do anything about it…In other words, this ‘very good’ reason’ that you have for behaving like this, is actually a mercy  … For you. 🙂


It’s also important to ‘take stock’ here at regular intervals. To take it easy for a bit… Say once every seven days..


There’s a view of doing stuff out there that is connected very closely with sitting in a quiet room and doing nowt… But this has got very little to do with Working either, which is far more like trying to get that washing in off the line during a sudden heavy rainstorm, accompanied by a high wind… You just find yourself ‘trying to do your best’ … By, say, putting the clothes-pegs in your mouth while trying to stuff as many still-damp clothes under both your arms as you can…

You might be able to see here that your ‘genuine self’ could, far more likely, be much more concerned with ‘looking good’ while doing so. And so could easily start protesting, and be trying to discover all sorts of acceptable motives for quickly running back into the cosy kitchen – and not doing anything about those clothes out there on the washing-line…

This is the major hang-up, as I see them, for all of those well-meaning folk who are desperate to present themselves as  ‘yoga teachers’,  or some variety of ‘self-elected guru’ or other. They seem to have deluded themselves into believing that if only they knew the right trick (which always seems to involve training oneself to breath up one nostril; or ‘think of nothing’ {something that many of them actually seem to be very good at}; or eat only beans and radishes; or wear a white suit, grow facial hair, and talk using a very quiet reassuring tone about how easy it actually all is when you ‘know’,  then they will be able to stand in their garden in the middle of a howling gale with not a hair out of place, remain bone dry, and with all the washing stacked up and folded very nicely in that organic basket at their feet. … In the meantime, the best that they actually seem to have on offer, as far as you’re concerned, is to tell you to, “Try to keep calm, and wring your trousers out when you get back in the kitchen.” Something that our budgerigar could have told you for free, without you having to buy a special mat and go to all the trouble of learning – and then having to remember – the Sanskrit word for ‘Clothes-line’… You surely don’t need to go on a special diet to figure stuff out like this out do you? … Or maybe you do, because perhaps you believe that if only you can fill your life with an endless number of disconnected ideas, you’ll get to the end of it without spoiling your perm…

So then, I would maintain that  you need to have a period set aside (a ‘day of rest’ is a good way to think about it … 🙂  …) to do a bit of getting up-to-date and sorting out..


If you’re ‘doing it properly’, you will eventually reach a place where you clearly have to accept who it is that you really are, and (at this point, rather obviously) you see that now (and only now) you have a choice to ‘set your face’ towards doing something about yourself – that is, to ‘become’ what you’re supposed to be… Another way to see this is that you now, finally, at last, have someone real that you can love, because this ‘authentic self’ is someone real.

And out of this love, you will now have the latent possibility to love others, because you are now real (please note, I’m not saying that you are ‘perfect’ or even ‘better’). Only that you are now a ‘someone’ then, who can ‘be’ with others …really..

Having had this realization (you don’t have to Work on perceiving initially that you are divided – if you look, you will see that you have always known that you were).. You can now begin your journey of ‘becoming who it is that you have the potential to really be’ (I call this process ‘Working’). Any particular progress that I happen to make here, I conceptualize as a ‘profit’. And no matter how insignificant it might seem at the time, it is always welcomed 🙂


Something else that might help here … For me, the phrase ‘behaving spiritually’ means to be working on a re-arrangement of your present form by controlling the way that you function (learning ways to discipline yourself either positively or negatively) – something that usually requires the production of a great deal of  guilt on your part… Becoming a ‘spiritual person’ on the other hand is to transform your form by Working, and then engaging in meaningful relationships with others and with the world and the objects that you find in it, and thus ‘becoming’, such that you will have ‘more life, and have it more abundantly’ (producing an ‘increase’ or ‘profit’ for yourself then)… This will automatically produce a change in the manner in which you subsequently function, which will transform your form (but perhaps not in the way , or in anything like the measure, that you might have wanted)… One of Eugene Halliday’s suggested methods here was that you commit completely to something … (Letting our “Yes” be yes, and your “No” be no, then), without knowing (without being able to predict) what was going to happen (“I will help this mentally ill person no matter what happens; no matter how they behave; and no matter what is required of me.”) Mothers do it all the time by the way… Obviously though, once again, it is very easy to maintain that in some cases there might be some overlapping of the ‘genuine’ and ‘authentic’ – but if that’s all you’re doing (producing dialogue of the type, “I don’t quite get what you mean… What about etc. etc.”) the most important thing for you to now understand is why you are doing so, and if in fact it’s the sort of thing (continually engaging in delaying tactics by telling yourself you’re just being cautious, or that you don’t quite understand) that you only ever really do in situations like this… 🙂 … Once again, I believe that Eugene Halliday had a great method for Working with this overlap, that he systematized using his concepts of ‘Ancestral Inheritance’ and ‘The Long Body’ (etc.). Where – to cut to the chase – your ‘authentic’ self convinces your ‘genuine’ self that it will get what it wants out of any situation if it will only get out of the way and stop interfering while you ‘get on with things’ here… In his system any increase now achieved by the ‘authentic’ self removes some of that engramic energy of ‘your’ circumscribed Sentient Power from the ‘genuine’ self, thus weakening it’s influence (It’s a bit more complicated than that… Actually it’s a lot more complicated than that 🙂 … And so, once again, I don’t think this is too good a time to go any deeper into it here)

Is the ‘be’ always coming and never arriving? You go on to say that your criteria for evaluating others “…re. their claims to be Working…..is just how able they are becoming at ….’doing’…..themselves”. Is your intention here to place the stress on ‘doing’…themselves’? In which case, only you and the given ‘Worker’ would know about it, i.e. you have ‘defined’. Working and say that few, if any, manage it, which is really hardly surprising given the lack of ‘ultimate meaning’.

See above on my belief in the requirement to Work as part of  the Creative Process… And I would just add that I have no idea how many of the seven billion plus of us are Working (I can’t ‘feel them doing it in the field’, or anything like that)… I suspect though that many are Working away quietly, but that, unlike me, they don’t happen to need material – such as that produced by Eugene Halliday – to keep them at it… I happen to be one of those beings who do so, because all my activity – like that of any introvert – requires that I first acquire or create some form of interior form to relate to before I can interact with the objective world  ..

I  don’t feel that this is of any real concern to me anyway; I can’t really generate any interest in something like ‘ultimate meaning’…

My only concern here are for those I meet with as I go on my way…  I don’t see many Working, it’s true, but – to use what I believe is Eugene Halliday’s view here –  Creation continues with or without any particular circumscribed being’s committed involvement to Work for the development of potential (He referred to this as the ‘slow way’ of evolution) – you can be as selfish as you damn-well like! It’s just that you can join in if you freely chose to do so, and that if you do you will find that you now have that  ‘Pearl of great price’ … But I’m getting all mystical again now…  🙂

Once again, as I have already pointed out somewhere in these posts I have no idea what the ‘ultimate’ in ‘ultimate meaning’ really ‘means’. It’s an idea that seems to me to be very closely associated with ‘the best’ – a major obsession for the many ambitious folk who appear to me to be spending most of their time attempting to clamber up very greasy poles in order, they fancy, for them to ‘get somewhere’… Can I ask if you have this ‘ultimate meaning’ in any aspect of your being?

In the post, you are interested to consider where the stress belongs in the words of a sentence, in order to deduce the intended meanings. However, if all meanings are subjective to an individual (“know what it means to you”), then this subjectivity implies that meaning is ephemeral and as fleeting as our lives, upon which that meaning then depends for manifestation. Hence, meaning becomes a pseudo-meaning, anchored to nothing (not even the ‘no-thing’).

All meaning is predicated upon the value of your relationships to other beings; objects; experiences, etc. as well as to your ideas. And it seems to me that you don’t give these aspects of all this the importance that I believe they deserve. It is dangerous to be satisfied entirely with a ‘correct answer’ – which is, in my view, merely a component of your current ‘Savior for a time’ – a construct then that will (and should) fall apart or turn to dust in the time process – because (thankfully) you will no longer need it..


I agree with the necessity of your heuristic approach to ‘meaning’ (or Work), through techniques which seek to inquire, explain, investigate and real-ise for yourself, yet as I already mentioned, I can’t see that Meaning itself..

There is no such thing as ‘Meaning itself’ except where it ‘arises’ from those techniques you happen to employ that are being used to throw light upon an already existing relationship… You cannot dissect a piece of paper with the word ‘five pounds’ on it and say, “Here’s the value bit – this little chunk here.” Just as you cannot ‘dissect’ your relationships in order to extract their ‘meaning itself’.

does not have some ‘objective’ (wrong word, but can’t find a better one) source (as does ‘Truth’, ‘Value’, ‘Purpose’ etc), which can only be conceptualised as God, S.P. or the Father etc.

I am not dissuaded that, yes, we do create our own meanings ‘down here’ because it is our way of qualifying what is real to us. Or, to put it another way, “All that there is, is Sentient Power, and this Sentient Power is Working for the development of potential in All being.” .. And the act of qualifying this process, as we experience it ‘in the now’, forms part of our attempt to ‘give it’ meaning.

Again there seems to be an attempt here to abstract the term ‘meaning’ from the experiential relationship that it essentially and necessarily requires for me to be. It’s like using a term like ‘just love itself’ … I have no idea what this might ‘mean’ and in fact it sounds ridiculous to me. (Interestingly here, Eugene Halliday maintains that ‘hate’ is ‘love deprived of its object’).


My experience has been that although I’ve met more than a good few who claim that they are really interested in the idea of Work (one group here would be those who turned up to hear Eugene Halliday speak). But all that they really seemed to be interested in were ‘snippets’ of ‘occult information’ (if I could put it like that), or some definite course of action (complete with instructions of one sort and another) so they could ‘get stuck in’ and ‘develop’, and which they would then go on to discuss endlessly, between themselves. And if I had to say what was really going here with all these beings, it would be, “Nothing much at all really. Nobody here comprehends the purpose of Work, and instead imagines that it’s an ‘activity’ or something like that, where we learn all about ‘knowing things’ or ‘developing life-styles’ in order to perhaps, ‘ further enjoy our lives’ (Whatever on earth that is supposed to mean).” And without a sense of profound purpose already present (even if this is, by and large, unformulated, or undeveloped), without any overall direction then, engaging in pursuits like this confers no more real understanding necessarily  than any other leisure activity would.

So it is not that ‘All that there is, is Sentient Power, and that it is Working for the development of potential in all Being’ then… Because, as it stands, this is merely yet another interesting idea to discuss; or some sort of theological position that promises to become a fruitful area of study.

And so, in this facile sense, it cannot possibly be then, …’The .. Sole … Purpose … For .. My … Being …Here .. Now’. .. The problem? … This concept has to have meaningfor … me. And it can only have that if I enter into a relationship with it … If I experience it.

To be Continued ….

Bob Hardy
Portland, Oregon, USA

20th December, 2016.



NOTE: I was very busy doing other stuff during most of April, so, instead of trying to rush things, I thought it best if I posted the much shorter than usual piece below …


I have no doubt that Eugene Halliday was first and foremost a Christian, and consequently, that the majority of the subjects he wrote about were from this perspective.

From 1969 until 1986 (the year before his death) approximately 200 of his short essays – consisting of around 3,000 words each (and thus totaling well over half-a–million words) first saw the light of day in the pages of the monthly parish magazine of  ‘St Michaels and All Angels Church’, located in the North West of England – in what was at that time, ‘Manchester 23’.

Here is a complete (dated) list of these essays, prepared recently by Joan and Ron Ford Eugene Halliday for St Michael’s (1969-1986)

It might also be worth noting here that, earlier on in the 1950’s, Eugene Halliday also had a number of his essays published in two other local church magazines,  ‘The Cavendish Magazine’, and ‘The Healing Quarterly.’

I believe that one of Eugene Halliday’s major concerns was what I might call, the ‘spiritual dilemma’ of contemporary Western European man. And with this in mind I would like to suggest that you take the time to read Eugene Halliday’s ‘The Conquest of Anxiety’… This is available as a freely downloadable pdf file from Josh Henessy’s excellent site. Just go to the ‘Written Work’ section accessible via the Menu Bar located along the top of his site.

Josh’s Eugene Halliday transcriptions site  

Eugene Halliday devised his own unique exercise – one that I took an active part in over a number of years, between the late 1970’s and early 1980’s – and that I would claim was based on a decidedly European symbolism.

This is my own (somewhat sketchy for the time being) description of this exercise…  ‘My own’, because I’ve never heard, or seen, it described like this by anyone else. Indeed some of the descriptions I’ve heard bandied about by others who claim to have ‘been on this exercise’ themselves, makes me doubt whether we were attempting to do the same thing.

I also remember that the number of people who could work at any one time with this exercise was thirteen, but that never – at least during the time that I attended – was there any more than about eight people actively involved.

The participants, essentially, invoked a (variety of) emotional states, using their ‘active imagination’ (Eugene Halliday referred to this use of active imagination as ‘letting’).These emotional states were dependent upon the nature of the particular exercise in question. This was first decided upon, before being subsequently more precisely formulated, and finally pronounced aloud verbally, by the group. Individual members of the group then assumed particular aspects of this formulation by attempting to actively participate in it dynamically .

Thus, this exercise was not about ‘emptying the self’ if you will, but rather more about ‘filling the self’… This seemed to me to be a technique that was completely beyond the ability of many of those who were willing to take part. In my opinion, the majority of those present seemed unable to come to grips with the essential technique of ‘letting go’ – and as a result there was usually a great deal of ‘active conjecturing’ taking place, as opposed to  ‘active imagination’… Regrettably, the success of the exercise was dependant on the fact that no-one taking part was ‘faking it’.

For me the over-riding experience was similar to listening to someone playing from a written piece of music that – although the person playing it may have indeed written themselves in the (recent) past – claimed was being improvised ‘on the spur of the moment’. Although I would add, in their defense, that those taking part did appear to have convinced themselves – and so in fact believed  – that they were indeed improvising..

This exercise was, in my view, originally designed by Eugene Halliday to allow those taking part to experience a range of their own emotional states in a controlled scenario through the technique of improvising, using active imagination; while at the same time allowing them to simultaneously observe the range of emotional states emanating from those others taking part… The rough idea being to resolve this situation ‘in the moment’, and subsequently to – what I would describe as – ‘distill the essence of it’…

However,  although the majority of the various attempts at these exercises that I took part in over the years I would say were failures, they did provide me with yet another excellent version of – what Eugene Halliday referred to (and wrote about) –  ‘The Tacit Conspiracy’…(Also available on Josh Hennessy’s site, if you’re interested)

I have included a brief description of this exercise here, because I maintain that it’s easy to see ‘The Conquest of Anxiety’ is intimately connected with it – if you’re sufficiently ‘along the way’ here, that is… View this as a ‘little test’ from me then … If you like …

… Back to my birthday party…


To be continued…

Bob Hardy

30th April  2013

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