Dr. Graves'

THE FIFTH SUBSISTENCE LEVEL - The E-R or Multiplistic Existential State

Theme: Express self for what self desires, but in a fashion calculated not to bring down the wrath of others.

This level arises when the D problem, the need for lasting order and everlasting security, is provided by the philosophical prescriptives for authority. This rigid, dogmatic, authoritarian leadership blocks those developing feelings of self which began to emerge in the third level of existence. This produces problems in the self for having to adhere to authoritarian ways. And, it arises from the problem created by the fact of death which a developing consciousness begins to question.

This desire for the expression of self and this doubt about the prescriptions and answers of authority, plus the fact that lower classes have little pleasure in life and higher cannot be certain of afterlife, activates the R neurological system. This leads the person to ask, "is this the only life I will ever live and, if so, why can't I have some pleasure in this existence?"

This activation of the N system provides for the beginning of dispassionate, objective, hypothetico-deductive, not moralistic-prescriptive thinking. This leads to thinking in a multiplistic, not absolutistic, manner. That is, there are many ways to think, but only one best way, rather than only the right way or the wrong way.

Thinks beyond giving and receiving to objective viewing of self, others, things, activity around self and one's own activities. Thinks in terms of it being right to receive and to aspire beyond what one's class is--permits one's status desire. Behaves in terms of not receiving or not following "the word." Tries to analyze and to comprehend and, in so doing, to be impersonal and distant.

Thinks in terms of all life being a game with the end being to discover how to circumvent the rules to one's own advantage, but not so much as to raise the ire of others. "Bend-the rules, don't break them," is the dictum. Promote the individual self, but carefully.

Enjoys mapping the territory of experience, but shies from intense personal experiencing itself. Uncomfortable sensing the whole as more than its parts. Prefers to add up his/her own conception of the parts. Breaks things into parts so as to understand and to control them.

Shows actions perceived by others as hostile, but are unaware of the hostility and deny its presence. Lives so as to express self, but by avoiding serious trouble when so doing.

Sees the world in terms of intra-psychic separation from others, Thinks in terms of disidentifying self from earlier ways of thinking and doing and of rearranging things to suit self. See selves as struggling to free selves from others. These are struggles to free self from actual restriction, not egoencroachment.

Thinks in terms of real concern for others so long as such thinking does not hurt self. Spawns a rational, economic, bargaining, self-promoting conception for managing life's problems.

First appeared 600-700 years ago.

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