Posts Tagged ‘Way to Happiness’

I return to The Lands

18 March 2020
dead trees along american river

About two years ago I started a blog called “The Lands” about a fictional global event that changed the planet forever, and how it was handled.

It is set, maybe, 50 years in the future.

It was an exercise for me in how things I had learned could be applied in the real world. But of course, the global emergency I depicted was entirely fictional…

I wanted to turn that blog – or at least that idea – into a work of fiction. But I didn’t particularly want to write a novel. I was getting pictures of how the story might go, so I thought: Why not write a screenplay?

I am still working on a version that could actually last an hour or longer on film. Meanwhile, I wrote some other stories to get some practice on how to use Trelby, an open-source tool for writing screenplays.

But today I found myself home for a day, because I had some sniffles. My church wants to play it very safe. They know what’s being reported about this global event…

So I thought, why not publish here the part of the story that I consider basically finished? Maybe it could provide a few of you with something to do if you, too, are stranded at home. And maybe it could point out that there might still be some hope left in this world. So here it is:

Help and Happiness

1 March 2020

I was recently encouraged by a Scientologist to write something on the subject of help.

My main reluctance in doing concept articles is that I don’t have many, or any, photos to illustrate them with. So, sorry for the lack of pictures in this first draft. Perhaps that will be rectified later.

In this little piece on the subject of help, I thought I’d structure it around The Way To Happiness, one of my favorite informational books written by LRH for the general public. This book is unique in our literature, as it doesn’t mention Dianetics or Scientology anywhere in it, yet we use it a lot and distribute it widely. The contents of the book itself are best communicated by this video: https://www.scientology.tv/documentaries/the-way-to-happiness.html

Help

Help is a word for the basic exchanges that occur among people in any society. Many forms of help are considered valuable enough to pay for, and all economies are based on the idea that the products and services offered for sale by businesses will help the people who buy them.

Other forms of help are embedded into society and its biological nature and are considered basically required forms of charity or selfless assistance. Some forms of these activities, like education, lie on the border between social necessities and social niceties and may cost money to those helped under some circumstances.

In any case, a society can’t run properly if it can’t generate enough economic support to help people, at least in the most basic ways, who can’t afford to pay.

Take Care of Yourself

This is the first precept in The Way to Happiness and is obviously a basic. If you aren’t well-fed, well-rested and basically healthy, you will be in no position to help anyone else, whether that be in the role of parent, teacher, or worker. Therefore, taking care of yourself helps everyone who you normally interact with.

This basic continues to show up throughout the book. Be Temperate is precept 2. Don’t be Promiscuous is precept 3. Set a Good Example is precept 6. Seek to Live with The Truth is precept 7. Do Not Murder is precept 8. Don’t Do Anything Illegal is precept 9. Do Not Steal is precept 13. Be Worthy of Trust is precept 14. Fulfill Your Obligations is precept 15. Be Industrious is precept 16. Be Competent is precept 17. Try Not to Do Things to Others That You Would Not Like Them to Do to You is precept 19. Try to Treat Others as You Would Want Them to Treat You is precept 20. And Flourish and Prosper is Precept 21.

If you can take care of yourself well enough, then you can create a stable platform in your own life that will enable you to help others abide by the above precepts.

Love and Help Children

This is precept 4. It is one of the most important acts of charity that most of us take upon ourselves early on in the course of our own adult lives. It is incredibly important in the activity of putting the future there. Of course it embraces many activities, but the essential concept is that those you help as your own children are not obligated to pay you back.

But the other point about this whole subject of charitable help is that those you help will tend to feel obligated to you for the help you have provided. Thus, a part of helping anyone selflessly is the action of accepting whatever they may have to offer in return as their help to you.

Honor and Help Your Parents

This is precept 5. Although many parents of the previous generation strove to remain totally financially independent into their older years, this is becoming less and less possible now, and in some places has never been possible. Their obvious first resource for help when they get old is and should be their own children. This, essentially, completes the cycle of exchange that starts when we are children. It is a necessity in a biology-based society, whether we rely totally on children to handle their own parents or dream up some sort of collective scheme (like Social Security) for accomplishing this.

Be Industrious, Be Competent

In order to accomplish the help of children and old people that we must do to sustain our society, we must earn more during our working years than we need merely to take care of ourselves. I consider this to be the foremost principle behind the concept of “profit” (economists might disagree).

This can only be accomplished through the exercise of industry and competence. In the confusion of growing up in this modern world, these basics can easily get overlooked. The grim philosophy of “every man for himself” can creep into the picture and cloud the fact that the game we are playing here on Earth consists essentially of helping each other, and that if we stop doing that, we will soon have no Earth.

As I look back on my own life now, I am amazed at how long it took for me to realize that the main reason I was working was to help my company (or similar group) be successful so that it could continue to exist and help others with its products and services. Actions that contribute to this are the ones that most likely lead to pay increases and promotions (in a sane group). And at their core they consist of industriousness and competence.

The formula for competence, by the way, is: Look, Learn and Practice. Thus all these activities are also forms of help, and are some of the most important activities to help others accomplish.

Respect the Religious Beliefs of Others

More generally, this could be seen as just learning to get along with others. The focus here is on religion because we have had so much trouble with it down through the ages. Today we have groups like “Interfaith Councils” whose sole purpose is to smooth things out between the various churches and promote an atmosphere of cooperation, especially in our charity work.

Spirit, and concepts of spirit, are also important parts of life for most people. The idea that such concepts are somehow superfluous is terribly cynical and, by observation, simply untrue.

Look at the value people place on art, beauty, and entertainment for example. These activities could be considered totally non-productive from a purely biological point of view. I often wondered about this when I was younger. Do animals need art? Then why to we need art? The answer is that most of us are aware of our spiritual nature and value it highly. Art and storytelling validates this awareness and therefore becomes a potent form of help.

Support a Government Designed and Run for All the People

This is an important precept (10) that I almost missed because it didn’t at first seem to connect with the concept of help. But there it is in the first word of the precept, “support.” To be part of a scene where Government is slowly going crazy can be a very stressful experience. This has been the case in many countries over history and seems to be creeping up on us now here in America. Luckily we have our founding documents which are very clear on the point of Happiness and what government is supposed to do. Though these documents may seem terribly outdated in many ways, they remain conceptually sound, and are worth supporting (I think) over and above any actions which mere humans may implement in their name.

The current scene here in the U.S. is a very confused scene. We have too many in government acting like criminals, listening to advice from people acting like criminals, or simply acting confused or incompetent. It is our job to put this damaged structure back together into something that will work better and be more effective than it ever has been before. I think that now that we have tools like The Way To Happiness, we could be successful at this.

Flourish and Prosper

The last two precepts in The Way To Happiness go over who the “real heroes” in society are, and why they deserve to prosper, and quite often (but not always) do. To lead a helpful, even charitable, life, does not bar one from happiness and prosperity, but rather opens the door to those valuable rewards. Though some may build temporary empires on forms of “help” that actually only harm (such as illegal drugs, human trafficking) they are often short-lived and frantic versions of real prosperity, and can never lead to real happiness.

Thus, we must measure a “help” activity not by the PR put forward to justify or defend it (or criticize it), but by the actual results it obtains. We are living though a time where these contrasts are very much in our faces. Just last night I was reminded of how “vapes” were marketed as a way to “help” people stop smoking cigarettes. Instead, they have become a more sophisticated, more easily hidden, and more readily accessible way of consuming dangerous drugs, including not only nicotine, but also THC, drugs intended for medical use, and hard drugs. So here we have an example of a technology that sold itself as “helpful” yet has exploded into one of our worst drug use epidemics in history.

True help will assist us to flourish and prosper. Value it!

I left out one of the precepts that is also key:

Do Not Harm a Person of Good Will

Such people unfailingly try to help, and are the backbone of any society.

Reader feedback on this topic will be valued and is highly encouraged!