Author Topic: Trusting My Better Judgment  (Read 897 times)

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Offline 80's Guy

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Trusting My Better Judgment
« on: September 10, 2005, 10:42:00 PM »
In my opinion, JU, you are correct in stating that The Seed was a personal experience and that I was not the only one affected. As a contributor to this forum, I disagree, however, that the attention here is on the negative.  First of all, for over 20 years I lived around The Seed and ?embraced? the group, both the good as well as the bad. On this point, your proclamation that we should recognize, moreover focus, on the positive is contradictory since you left the Seed after a confrontation with L, where you recognized that not all was fair in Shangri-La.  

My question to you JU: ?Why leave the group after only 6 years to never return based on human flaws that you recognized in L. and A.?  After all, if you were so aware that the ?dream? was what really counted and not individual personalities/modalities, then why not take on the attitude, like so many of us did, that being grateful was the number one priority??

I was told off by L., A,, and a few other people, more than several times in 20+ years. Sometimes, I knew that it was not fair, but I still kept thinking about the positive, not the negative, so I stayed.  Why? Above the fear of leaving, I saw my time at The Seed as a journey with friends, who I did feel were like brothers and sisters for many, many years. The Seed was all I really knew from ages 17-38.

Where I also disagree with you is that because I ?talk? about myself in this forum (something I learned at The Seed), I do not think of others in my life. This forum JU is a very small slice of my life, and if I do choose to focus on issues--positive, negative, or both--that is a right I claim, just as you claimed your right to think independently, many years ago, by walking out the door after realizing that L. and A. were making it clear to you that ?Art is The Seed.? As you said, they would have it no other way. I see that you exerted your independent thought, a freedom that all of us are entitled to. It is this very freedom which you claimed that night that I have the right to claim over and over again to this day in regards to my experiences at The Seed for over 20 years.

As others have mentioned, the interrelations at the Seed were complex, and I was emotionally tied as a product of a much deeper bond, I assure you, than someone who was around for only six years could ever imagine, especially because the ?bond? in the 80?s and 90?s was so much tighter than the 70?s. You seem to miss the point that after so many years of participating in the group, I demand and claim the right to explore and question the reasons for things at The Seed since they so intimately impacted who I am today.

Perhaps, you do not realize how much I really do get it, JU. Despite peer pressure, I take full responsibility for my decision to stay at The Seed all those years, but I refuse to ignore that it is my God given right to question others as I question myself and as you questioned a long time ago. The truth is that many of us were not as ?empowered? by A. as you and a few other key staff members were to the point where you felt you had the right to question. For some of us it took longer to assert our true opinions about issues that were impacting our lives.  

Yes, there was a lot of good, but there were also plenty of decisions based on greed, power, conceit?the full spectrum of human flaws. The funny part of all this is that I hold no grudges toward staff or anyone else associated with The Seed, most of all you.

The part I think you have difficulty with is that, speaking for MYSELF, even though I have grown to hold no resentments about selfish decisions that impacted the collapse of the group and ultimately cost me almost all of my friendships since we were asked to choose a side, between L. and A., I still love everyone I came in contact with at The Seed. This part of the drama you did not have to live, JU, since a long time ago you chose to think for YOURSELF. And frankly, I don?t blame you. I just hope someday you recognize that the epiphany you experienced that final night is the same freedom that others have had to claim along the way. I really believe that if you take time to look closely and listen carefully you might find that our experiences are not only about ourselves, but the bigger picture of a place some of us so personally called home.  ::rainbow::  [ This Message was edited by: 80's Guy on 2005-09-10 19:42 ]
« Last Edit: December 31, 1969, 07:00:00 PM by Guest »

Offline Anonymous

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Trusting My Better Judgment
« Reply #1 on: September 15, 2005, 09:35:00 PM »
i just wanted to comment that this was an extremely well written post.
« Last Edit: December 31, 1969, 07:00:00 PM by Guest »

Offline Antigen

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Trusting My Better Judgment
« Reply #2 on: September 16, 2005, 02:58:00 PM »
Yeah, it really is. Made me think some.

Based on what you've posted, John, and what we discussed on the phone, it seems to me asif you had about the same strategy in mind as the Semblers and the rest of the founding BOD did. Please hear me out. I'm honestly not trying to offend you. I'd really like to get your response.

The promise (this is what I got from an actual member of that founding BOD, as well as my firsthand memory of what was going on around `80 or so) was a kinder, gentler Seed that wasn't a personality cult. Most of the original BOD bailed within the first 6 months or so as it became clear that that's not what was being delivered. It never was a personality cult. When Virgil came along and tried to guide it in that direction, he became the sacrificial lamb they threw to the wolves when under fire. Not that he didn't deserve that and much, much more. He did and his actions in the following years bear that out.

But, and this is my point, once again, getting rid of the megalomaniac in the pack did nothing to improve the program. It only improved the program's image, their PR thereby making it even more powerful and dangerous.

The problem never was any particular personality. It's the base dogma, the powerlessness doctrine, the blind faith in some vaguely defined mystical Awareness that can't understand till you have it. The reality is that you can't have it, it doesn't exist. But you can become convinced that making snap judgements of yourself and others based on Program dogma IS special enlightenment or awareness.

However, I stand nearly alone in having never seriously doubted the good intentions of any of these people. I think the fact that Sembler put his own son and, by some credible accounts, his grandson through the program pretty well supports the idea that he's a true believer.

Here's the problem, though. True believers are so much more dangerous than complicit criminals.

"Of all tyrannies, a tyranny exercised for the good of it's victims may be the most oppressive. It may be better to live under robber barons than under omnipotent moral busy-bodies. The robber baron's cruelty may sometimes sleep, his cupidity may at some point be satiated; but those that torment us for our own good will torment us without end, for they do so with the approval of their own conscience." --
C.S. Lewis, God In The Dock

Every act of a delegated authority, contrary to the tenor of the commission under which it is exercised, is void. No legislative act, therefore, contrary to the Constitution, can be valid. To deny this, would be to affirm, that the deputy is greater than his principal; that the servant is above his master; that the representatives of the people are superior to the people themselves; that men acting by virtue of powers, may do not only what their powers do not authorize, but what they forbid."
--Alexander Hamilton    

« Last Edit: December 31, 1969, 07:00:00 PM by Guest »
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