ON PLEASURE AND PAIN
published in: STOP LYING | booklet edited by The Middle of Silence Gallery | New York 1982
Our capacity for pleasure is infinite, but our capacity for pain is finite. We're so set up as to experience only as much pain as will make us compassionate.
What makes people become philosophical is a lot of pleasure and a lot of pain. If all you know is pleasure, you have no reason to reflect on your experience. If all you know is pain, you become despairing and hateful - a criminal whose only hope is to extract pleasure from the pain of others.
You should try to enjoy yourself more, in your dreams and in your life. Your fears create the obstructions. You should take the perspective that every pain, every anxiety should be turned into pleasure. The same energy causes both pain and pleasure. What makes it pain is the way it moves. Let it spread around freely and it can become pleasure. Let me put it on a simple level: if someone's boring you, you merely endure it—where you have the option of telling them to go away.
Our routines keep us each in a hardened shell, and pain is shedding that shell. You can't go from numbness to pleasure without going through pain. All Nature is characterized by that process: numbness to pain to pleasure.
The only kind of suffering that means anything is the suffering that won't go away. That's the suffering that teaches you. Anything else you can outsmart. But suffering that won't stop that 's the only thing that will call forth superhuman effort on your part.
Man's essential purpose is to serve the universe as an energy-amplifier. All his other functions are subservient to this one, wherein he raises the cosmic energy he is provided with to a higher level. In order to do so he must give and get pleasure. For this process cannot take place, in fact, unless pleasure accompanies it. As each generation of developing man will always want more pleasure than its forebears had, this increase will continue without limit.
A single energy-amplifier has only a limited capacity to amplify and enhance the energy in its environment, but when such human dynamos are linked through the process of sexual activity, their collective power to do so is increased tremendously. The possible increase in energy-amplifying capacity to be derived from such mergers of single units into cooperating complexes is theoretically infinite. But such mergers improve the energy-enhancing process only to the extent that the individual units involved keep no secrets from one another. All participants must share all their Information freely, so that no impediments to the flow of energy, such as guilt or fear, can become entrenched.
Any idea or doctrine that limits the ability of one energy-amplifier to engage in sexual activity with another for the production of greater energy for the universe contravenes God's purpose in creating us. The idea that one energy-amplifier must limit its sexual contacts to only one other energy-amplifier is one such doctrine; another is the idea that it is reprehensible to have sex with someone you don’t love or know well. There must be total mobility and interchangeability among the units in God's energy-enhancement system. The increasing energy we thus process multiplies God's pleasure, and thereby we take Him off the cross He has borne for us for so long: for ages He has given to us unsparingly of His abundance without requiring us to return His beneficence, but rather waiting until we dedicate ourselves to this ever-growing harvest of energy and pleasure of our own willed choice. Thus gods he makes of us all.