The Evolution of a Slyman

The BeLIEf Paradox (The Contrast Of Knowledge)

Everyone is born into this world with the notion that we are not perfect, only this notion; does not come from inside of us. Society gives us this ideal image of a ‘person’ for us to model ourselves by. Religions, governments, parents, siblings, extended family, and peers push it on us; fuck, they demand it of us!  Everyone else has their own idea of how you should think, behave, and what you should value; especially when it in some way involves them. Now we could debate the need for these models, but I think there is something far more telling and intriguing to examine. The belief paradox.

I’m not sure which came first, the chicken or the egg; I suspect they’ve always held a temporal superposition. This is because one extreme seems to be the cause of its opposite and vice versa. I suspect that why we hold others to a standard, is because we were held to that standard ourselves. I also suspect that why we hold ourselves to a standard, is because others hold us to a standard. We believe the standard set, is the correct one; because it seems rooted in simple logical axioms.

Do not lie, because you would not want to be lied to. Do not steal, because you would not want stolen from. Do not kill, because you want to live. Do not cheat, because you would not want cheated. We weave together a construct of idealistic behaviors with little regard and appreciation for the value of divergence or imperfection. We bolster high, an imagined self (person); one in which we are in deep identification with. We imagine, when the moment comes for any particular ‘situation‘ we will act in a manner consistent to these logical axioms; more often though we surprise ourselves. What we find is that we act instead towards, what some have deemed our nature. Nature however is not unmovable, in fact it functions on principles of conditioning. Trees and plants grow towards sunlight, water, and minerals and are conditioned to which direction they can draw the path of least resistance.

At this point, I think it is necessary to introduce a premise of importance to this evaluation. My friend and colleague, Jason King has stated to me on several occasions; that “All knowledge, rests on the shoulders of a supposition”.  All things considered ‘fact’ can be deconstructed to a level in which we can only draw a logical assumption. Once again I find no necessity to debate the validity of this argument for belief. Instead I wish to point to the paradoxical nature of belief and knowledge, as once again I find a patterned recurrence. The temporal superposition held by the two, feeds one into the formation of the other, and vice versa.

Still what can this mean for the existence of our imagined self, and our natural self? Do they even hold some separation? If we are to imagine that we would dislike a particular ‘thing‘, and we then by means of supposition refuse to engage it; does that offer a logical evaluation? Do we truly know this ‘thing’ to be without benefit? Yet we are encouraged to let the things we believe shape our natural self. In fact, I see a lot of would be philosophical movements pressing the idea that belief is reality.

“We are mind and body: if mind and body (inasmuch as they
belong to the world of maya) are false, how can one hope to achieve
through them that which is true?” Strictly speaking, the extremist
Vedantic doctrine of maya would therefore deny to the individual
the very possibility of elevating oneself toward the principle, since
such a possibility presupposes that between these two no hiatus
exists (a relationship between not-being and being), but rather a
certain continuity. – J. Evola – The Yoga of Power

The above quote from Evola, delivers a razor sharp assessment of the matters being discussed here. If everything is an illusion, how then can we evaluate ourselves and the world abroad? If belief is reality, then why when I believe that pigs shit rainbows and airplanes; do I not see pens full of prism-ed aircraft? Mind you, we must still deal with the paradox; which presses its head so violently into this puzzle.

As a note of side thought, Evola makes mention in “The Yoga of Power” that the doctrine of maya is drawn from the principle of an unchanging absolute. Furthering by stating that any thing outside of that absolute can only be illusionary (he is examining the Vedantist position). This boldly contrasts everything I’ve come to expect from ‘fact’ and how it takes form. Pointing back at Jason King’s assertion, we see a mirror opposite emerge. This emergence is the basis of formulation for The belief paradox; which is expressed as such;

All knowledge, rests on the shoulders of supposition, therefore belief must be the basis of reality; if reality is whatever we believe, how can anything truly be known?

My examination then leads me to a particular line of thinking. There are real and present manifestations; which are both uncompromising and completely malleable. The Slyman recognizes the conditions within them, in which can be manipulated to his own ends. To achieve this, he must endeavor to truly know them; suspending all belief in favor of knowledge. Through this knowledge he escapes the paradoxical imposition of standards upon self, enacting the organic self; abandoning the path of least resistance.  To know thyself is almost as difficult as it is to be thyself, this is why we Work.

11 responses

  1. Mindboggling stuff! 🙂

    You should read “The Kybalion – A Study of the Hermetic Philosophy of Ancient Egypt and Greece” written by “Three Initiates”. This is an interesting little work which discusses such things as the Mental Universe, the Divine Paradox. and all kinds of Principles that fit this line of thinking. Very interesting! Just like this post!

    My regards, Nightcaller.


    October 30, 2011 at 3:45 am

  2. T.C. Downey

    Thanks for the compliment and the suggested reading, I certainly will check it out.


    October 30, 2011 at 9:52 am

  3. T.C. – Suspend our learned beliefs in order to gain the knowledge needed so that we can more fully manipulate our own reality?

    It is a “belief” of mine, taught to me by my mother, that as a woman, I shouldn’t be interested in telling others about myself. Her wisdom for me was that as a woman, I should prefer to be reserved and learn about the person that I am with (specifically when dealing with men). In doing so, I would be able to understand more of what they are looking for in a companion and manipulate my own behavior to accommodate their desires. I thought this advice was gold. If I followed this advice, I would be able to seduce almost anyone. I could make just about everyone that I chose happy with their choice to be with me because I was whatever they wanted me to be.

    I exercised this belief fully. And, for the most part, it worked. I was able to manipulate people, men and women, into thinking that I was the person that they wanted to at least go to bed with, let alone date and/or marry. Everything was great. Her advice taught me that if I observe those that I’m interacting with without focusing too much on myself or what I have to offer the other person, I’m more able to manipulate that other person into moving the direction I want them to.

    But… What I’m finding out about my Self as I Work is that in following my mother’s “wisdom,” I’m preventing myself from fully experiencing many interactions with people. I’m finding that I’m hiding my Self from others, as well as lying to myself about some of those interactions and my role in them. I understand that my mother’s advice was an attempt to allow me the opportunity to learn to observe my surroundings before putting myself too fully into a vulnerable state or position. However, what I’m finding out is that it’s really hindered my ability to react when I do find my self vulnerable because I’ve lost touch with who I really am since I’m so involved in pleasing everyone else.

    My belief, not my knowledge, allowed me to manipulate my reality, as well as the people around me. My knowledge gained has showed me how this is not necessarily beneficial to my Self. Now, I’m searching for that balance.


    October 30, 2011 at 10:44 pm

  4. T.C. Downey


    Does ‘wisdom’ really come from a belief? If the answer is yes then, how does it become wisdom? If the answer is no then, it changes the whole context of your experience doesn’t it? I’m willing to bet the later will be your answer. Did you believe the ‘wisdom’ your mother imparted upon you? I think you knew, that she normally would not steer you wrong. However I’ll digress at this point.

    As I really think there is a paradox presented to us. We cannot possess absolute knowledge at our current level, therefore all of our knowledge is resting upon assumptions; yet to find any truth, we must have a hiatus between known and believed. This points to the lie firmly encased in the word belief. Isn’t there an old saying.. every lie is 70% truth?


    October 31, 2011 at 3:19 am

  5. You touch on several very salient points here, as per the role of the golden rule as being held as an axiomatic article of faith, and the (lack of value) of the ‘imagined self'(or what I once addressed elsewhere as the ‘strawman self’)

    Solid piece man.


    October 31, 2011 at 12:09 pm

    • T.C. Downey

      Thanks Doc,

      I had just started writing this piece as I saw your Adversary to the Adversary piece go up, (I think I mentioned that somewhere to you) interesting how our minds were then at a similar crossroad.


      October 31, 2011 at 12:25 pm

  6. It happens 🙂


    October 31, 2011 at 1:14 pm

  7. interrogist

    “To know thyself is almost as difficult as it is to be thyself, this is why we Work.”

    Setting aside -for the moment- ‘why’, What are your thoughts on this ‘work’ being an informed persons, ‘personal effort’, as apposed to an inherent aspect of ones inadvertent ‘personal nature’?

    It may be reasoned that those who’s path seeks the least resistance, is Organic, after all we Interrogistic Slymen, are informed or striving to be informed, thus we are able to stray from that path. We are able to resist the urge to take the easy path, in pursuit of yet grater knowledge, However, What I dislike about this line of reason, would be the inadvertent assumption that, given the same information, any human might be Interrogistic or a Slyman.

    The work? Can it be that the ‘work’ is all that sets us apart? Thus boiling it down to a simple sentence: The aim of all societal domestication, would be to prevent the ‘Work’.

    I do appreciate your thoughts.


    October 31, 2011 at 3:19 pm

    • T.C. Downey

      Let me clarify a few things and then I will ask the same of you.

      1. The Work is indeed a chosen path of action, are some inclined ‘naturally’ to do so? Certainly.

      2. Is this an Organic effort?? By the measure of modern disciplines, not so much. This is in fact, the hardest path up the mountain; and few have or can develop the tenacity to tread up such a rocky treacherous terrain.

      Is the Work what sets us apart? = The Devil is in his deeds…

      Does this answer your questioning? Has reason not its heroes and villains


      October 31, 2011 at 3:45 pm

  8. ” To know thyself is almost as difficult as it is to be thyself, this is why we Work.”, an Excellent sentence of true wisdom, for without the work, one could not raise one’s level of consciousness, to which “I believe” leads to knowledge, and away from supposed belief and Maya. It has been my experience that living in this world without some form of self reflection or observation of self, one would be living in (maya) illusion and imagination, for one could not have a true picture of self or the world in which one lives in order to make “conscious decisions”, choices, (having true will) based on acquired knowledge by the work, as opposed to supposition or belief. With my last sentence I believe this is where illusion comes into play, for if one does not work on self bringing about awareness and self consciousness, (maya) illusions or beliefs would be one’s reality. This is how I basically view the world, as an illusion until self awareness or self consciousness can be sustained in congruence by the work which leads to objective consciouness and true reality. This is my take away from your Excellent blog, and my added views. Again excellent blog.


    November 2, 2011 at 1:29 am

    • T.C. Downey

      Thank you for both your offering of consideration, and high praise. Gathering from what you’ve offered, we see things on a similar plane.


      November 2, 2011 at 4:48 pm

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