Dedicated to Father Athanasius
Optina Pustyn, 2016
Considering the foundations of spiritual science “octanalysis,” which, according to the Bible, helps an ascetic to understand features of the system of his psyche and apply this knowledge for spiritual perfecting.
1. Variability of states, IDI cycle
According to the question “What is the first-driver in the Universe?” octanalysis responds simply. The IDI cycle (identification-1 → disidentification → identification-2) is the source of life, the property of a living one. Identification with one state of psyche is replaced by disidentification with this state. Then, identification with a different state than the previous one occurs. Constant change of states or variability of states is the fundamental property of the living one, it is the property of life. The variability of states occurs by itself independently of any phenomena. To implement the variability of states, space and time are not required. With the help of states variability, one can generate different images and create the illusion of space and time.
In the physical world, the IDI cycle manifests itself in the form of vibration. Vibrations at low frequencies are the sound, at high frequencies — light.
2. The illusion of space and time
God is the continuous variability of states. As a result of this variability, different images are generated. The change of one image to another creates the illusion of space and time. However, changing the frames of cartoon does not mean that the characters of the animated film live in time yet. Cartoon can create the illusion of time, but not the category “time.”
Variability of images means only that there is variability of images, but this does not mean that there is the category “time”. The notion of time invented by man is convenient to use to describe the degree of variability of images. But where there are no images, there is no notion of time and there is no notion of space, there are only the notion of the variability of states and the notion of light, sound. As time is illusory, so the notion of eternity is illusory. Thus also there is no problem of travelling through time. On the basis of the principle of impeccability, one can create an impeccable illusion of space and time, and then a person, as a rule, does not notice the illusory nature of space and time.
3. The divine state before the creation of the divine image
Some people misunderstand the phrase: “God created man in His own image, according to His likeness.” They naively believe that God exists in the form of an image, and on the basis of this image, in which He Himself is, He created man. In fact, God is in a divine state before the creation of the divine image. God is in the state that causes the generation of images. The expression “in His own image” means that God is the author of the image generated according to His will. But God does not exist in the form of this image.
Studying the properties of hot water, we will never be able to understand the construction of gas or electric stove on that this water is heated and brought to a boil. To understand the construction of a gas cooker, it is necessary to disassemble it and study it from the inside.
Similarly, by studying the images that God generates, we will not be able to understand essence of the divine states. To approach the understanding of God, one must be in different states, feel subtly these states and feel the transitions from one state to another. And the development of imagination, the desire to see some images, dreaminess, dreams, fantasies only segregate us from God.
4. God is a mirror
When a man comes to grief from the fact that God left him, he does not know about God’s ability to reflect like a mirror and that God can, like a mirror, reflect the inner state of a person.
When a person looks into the “spiritual mirror” and sees that God has left him, it means that the person himself has left God. A person is engaged in business that alienated him from God. It is exactly what he “sees”.
God is perfect, and He always responds adequately to the situation. If a person turns away from the divinity and moves away from the divinity, it means that the divinity also moves away from a man.
A person wants to accuse God of something. The man thinks: “I am so good, so perfect, but God has forsaken me. He is unjust.” But God is perfect, and He leaves only those who deserve it by their actions.
The person naively believes that the calls to God will help to approach God. But the response of God corresponds to the inner state of a person, the state of the human psyche. Only by changing one’s inner state a person can approach the divine, approach God. The calls to God show the intentions of man, but they do not change the inner state of a person.
Man, created in the image and likeness of God, also has the ability to be a mirror, but often this mirror can be with turbid reflection or crooked. Advancing along the path of spirituality, a person becomes more perfect, his mirror gives an increasingly clean and less distorted reflection.
When the interlocutor looks at you, he looks at you like at the mirror, and can “see” something in you. If a person, looking at you, sincerely gives you a characteristic that is not true, then he sees in you, as in a mirror, himself and gives a characteristic of his reflection.
5. Development of subtle sensations
To perceive the subtle sensations of the various inner states of a person, it is necessary to develop feelings. What is a subtle sensation?
When a person feels that someone is looking at his back, he turns around and is convinced that, really, they look at him from behind. Thus a person becomes convinced that his sensations do not deceive him. When he felt this feeling, he perceived a subtle sensation, but he did not have any image. There was only a feeling, and this feeling reflected the objective reality. Maintaining such sensitivity in one’s psyche is very important on the path of spiritual development.
Some people are able to feel that their relative is sick, who is more than 1000 km away from them. Such sensitivity gives a message to a person, but no images appear.
The development of such sensitivity in many ways helps the ascetic on the path of spiritual perfecting. The development of the sensitivity of the subtle perception of the states of the surrounding world, the states of the psyche of people, the sensation of coherence of one’s desire and divine will all this leads a person to comprehend the essence of his service to divinity.
6. Who creates hell in a person’s life?
All that is created by God, created on the basis of the principle of impeccability, so all is created without flaws. But in a person’s life there are both paradise and hell. And if it is not God, then who creates hell in a person’s life? On this question octanalysis gives the following answer.
The human psyche has an eight-component structura, it consists of eight hypostases. Only one of them is hypostasis, 1-Reason, which is capable to create hell. In Christianity this hypostasis is called mind, reason, the understanding. On the path of the spiritual development of the ascetic, it is the reason that creates difficulties and obstacles.
A certain hierarchy of hypostases is always established in the human psyche. When the natural, divine hierarchy of the eight hypostases is supported, the reason is at the last, eighth place. However, the reason has freedom of intellectual choice and is able to establish in the psyche arbitrary hierarchy of eight hypostases.
In keeping the divine hierarchy of hypostases, man serves divinity, the reason functions according to the divine will, maintains beauty, harmony and balance in human life. But if reason violates the divine hierarchy of the hypostases of the psyche on its own initiative, places itself first in the psyche, it becomes the reason-devil, the creator of hell. All the actions of the reason-devil are destructive for a person, for the health of his body, for the health of his soul and his heart. However, the reason-devil can also bring some benefit to the ascetic. Through his actions, he points to the ascetic his shortcomings, errors, weaknesses, passionate affections, which must be overcome on the path of spiritual development.
7. Reason-devil forms a sense of superiority and pride
The man who is guided by the reason-devil, we will call him “a man of the reason.” What is the life of a man of the reason?
Constructing relations between people, the man of the reason always ignores the personality in the person, tends to build only impersonal relations according to the scheme “tyrant — slave”, “persecutor — victim”, and always shows pride and a sense of one’s superiority over the interlocutor. But pride must be feared because of it grace is lost.
The man of the reason perceives remarks and criticism in his address very painfully, regards it as a personal insult and thinks about how to take revenge. A man of the reason is conceited, he expects praise from others.