Feb 3, 2011

The Public / Private Conundrum

I have recently been accused on crossing the boundaries of the private/public, by publishing private emails without permission. In the final analysis, the accusation is based on the indignation they feel that one individual relies on their own thought and judgment, rather than another person's.

But thinking about the private/public concept is also stimulating and relevant.

The animal's interpretation of private/public has this meaning:

Private: what I really prefer.
Public: what I'd have others believe I prefer.

That is, the animal's concept is hypocrisy and falseness.

The spiritual man's interpretation of private/public has this meaning:

Private: what I suffer in my relationship to truth, willingly, that I do not tell others about, because it is mine to bear alone, and confiding in others is a refusal to bear it at all;
Public: what I let others know about for their benefit.

The animal believes there really is such a division, to protect his ego. It divides his own mind into compartments of honesty and falseness (he keeps his honesty hidden, and therefore makes everything to himself false). He has no real faith in anything, because when he speaks, he lies. That means he must also doubt his own inner thoughts, because he hears them in the same way that he hears his own speech.

The spiritual man creates a division between what he demands of himself, and what he requires of others. That division is the private/public concept. He sets a lower standard for others, but he will still not lower it as they would want him to. Thus, the standard is essentially unified, because his standard, and the lower standard he sets for others out of mercy for them, are both part of the same continuum. This means the spiritual man's concept of private/public is not divisive at all: it is all of one nature. He doesn't compartmentalise his mind.

Yes, I am disappointed in those who have attacked me for disrespecting their concept of private/public, because I thought some should have known better. But it is part of my spiritual trial, so I burden myself with it and hope to learn to have that apostolic division from the animal realm - to learn that I cannot have communion with any other being.

Kelly Jones

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