“Men are wolves”

 

Your letter needs a long and detailed answer but the time I have at my disposal won’t allow that. Nonetheless, I don’t want to keep you waiting because you are somewhat troubled.

One indisputable fact is that over all these years I have never doubted the value of the Teaching. That is fundamental. For as long as human beings – i.e., all of us – don’t spoil it, it is and will remain exceptional. And in our time I have never found anything equivalent.

Because it has this quality we must understand and bear everything else. For unless we are completely melted down and remade we shall destroy this legacy.

A second fundamental point is that the people who search and struggle within all teachings are no better to begin with than others; they are sometimes even worse, like Milarepa, and over the years they become even more difficult to live with, owing to the chemistry operating within them. The slow death to oneself produces a very unpleasant “stench of decomposition”.

So there is no question of taking those who belong to a teaching as angels or saints, but rather for what they are. And all means of seeing themselves such as they are, are good means.

All men are wolves. One should not be naive: that they enter into an inner discipline doesn’t make lambs of them. You speak of your stupidity, but no, it’s the stupidity of the hypocritical civilization in which we live that causes our suffering. We have been led to believe idiocies and they have deformed us all. We must be cured. I advise you to read and reread the Gospels and the New Man, but this time with a mind ready to perceive what degenerate Christianity has attempted to hide from us, namely the struggle, the combat not only of Jesus but of the Apostles also. And while doing that, reflect on this grim comedy called “Western Christian civilization based on love” which has in its track record innumerable wars, the Crusades, the massacre of the Albigensians, and cruel, mercantile colonization. All under the mask of bringing aid and culture and evangelization. 

“Men are wolves” – but why especially the members of our groups? No! In the groups we try to reveal the truth of the matter and provide help for people to stop lying and lying to themselves. Those who dream of “goodness”, “perfection”, etc., should not enter a way of genuine search. The problem is, however, that no one wants to face the truth – I felt that while listening to the texts read aloud at the last meeting: there was little in them about the conflicts, the struggles, the desperate fights put up by the “person” who does not want to give in. Men are wolves who dream they are lambs and want others to be what they are not.

Who can accept and say: “I am a wolf”?

So long as we cannot clearly see this, no change will go deep.

No, blows of any and every kind are not permitted to those who search. That is not the way of the sly man. However, all available means to awaken can be used by those responsible for shaking up their fellow men insofar as they have themselves been through the mill.

I am not trying to demolish you; I’m trying to awaken you to the truth along lines I myself know. Do you wish to awaken? Are you afraid of seeing the truth? It doesn’t tally with what you imagine? You forget, like almost everyone else, the intermediary stages.

I’ll try to sum up the situation: you admit that, as you are to begin with, there is nothing very remarkable, and from there you jump straight up to the state of the fully developed man for whom all is blissful and delightful. Between these two, what can be considered the “truth”: the ordinary state of being that we try to push aside in order to enter blissfully into eternal happiness? 

Is that clear enough? Such is the drama of all good souls who turn away from true disciplines and abandon themselves to dreamy methods. Don’t fall into that trap. The merit of this teaching is that it doesn’t “sweeten the pill”. It tells us: you think that everything is good and beautiful, and you are right; but this is only possible insofar as your eyes and ears open, and you must accept the obvious fact that, open, they will show you what you are at present and make you discover that, as you are at present, you cannot see the world in all its beauty and goodness. One has to go through this purgatory in oneself – one has to die to all of one’s illusions. I know perfectly well that many people run away, once they begin to realize that the Work means the end of dreaming and means seeing oneself – they run away, shouting “Treason! This teaching is horrible, it doesn’t mention love, etc.”. Everyone wants to perceive marvels, but few want first to see themselves. And, after all, it’s understandable because we correspond so little to what we imagine and the true vision of oneself is scarcely pleasant, so why not dream and think of Paradise?

No! The Teaching is not horrible; it is incomplete human beings who are. A foetus is not particularly beautiful to see, and this is precisely how we are now in relation to our total transformation. 

Why do you always look at other people and judge them? You used to consider them perfect and now, with the blindfold removed, you consider them horrible. You are not here for that; you are here, in the time available to you, to “see yourself objectively”, which means without judging or criticizing yourself.

You are too preoccupied with the subjective side of humanity and not enough by the divine side of Creation, and consequently the divine side of human beings. Now, one might believe that it’s just the opposite, since you think too often about the marvelous side! But the marvelous is not the divine.

You do not love yourself. From that comes the misery and difficulties.

Michel Conge