Looking > feeling > thinking


L. Ron Hubbard (1953)

And you find out this fellow’s, when trying to say, “Where is the future?” he has always understood that the future had a location and that the past had a location. And in baffled contemplation of no location, he’s of course assumed both of them and put them in his body. And here we get the condensation of looking which makes a body. … But where a person is very savagely holding on to a body or holding on to blackness, he’s simply doing this trick, that’s all: “Where is the past? Where is the future?” And of course, he’s bringing in these long-distant anchor points, he thinks, and this condenses him.

The (local) past and future do not have a perceptual existence. Yet we commonly determine our perception of the present by referring to them as authoritative.

Now, in everything we’re doing, there’s a motto running through here and you’ve heard that motto, it’s “Look, don’t think; look, don’t think.” Now, that motto becomes very explainable when you find out you can’t look at the past and you can’t look at the future if you are right here in the present. See? So if you can’t look at the past and look at the future, then you find yourself very indistinct with regard to how to look at them. So, of course, you have to think about them.

Look, don’t think—Come into present time with your perception. Reduce your consciousness to reception of the really given—here/now. That is, withdraw your consciousness from past resurrection and future anticipation and expend all of your attention on the melting presence of now. With every moment, a new influx; a new influx; a new influx. Take note now and take note now. Note-taking is always of what’s present, and so note-taking is constant. This absorbs the attention and prevents it from seeping into the imaginary. Looking is attention withdrawn in time, to melting infinite space.

The really given for us is only the present. The past and future, not being really given, must be made. Thinking about X means making X in the imagination. The past and future are not given as presence and, so, we have to think about (imagine) them.

And the other motto—and these mottoes, by the way, I’ll probably have made into a couple of small—like these office door signs, these white and black office door signs. I’ll have a whole stack of them made and I’ll put them in each auditing room because you may think these things are something you will remember all the time, but it’s possibly better to have them around.
And the other is “Looking”—pardon me—“Feeling is a condensation of looking,” and “Thinking is a condensation of feeling,” and you got it. You don’t see how this collapses the anchor points.

Feeling is a condensation of looking—Withdraw your attention from infinite space and focus on the sensations “on your body,” as Goenka says. LRH calls these somatics. Feeling is attention withdrawn in space, into the body.

Thinking is a condensation of feeling—The imagination is even more inward than the body, which extends to the skin surface. Thought is inside the “I,” which we feel to be a point or a tiny sphere inside the head.

L. Ron Hubbard, 1st American ACC: Exteriorization & the Phenomena of Space [Looking: Definition of Static]