Volume 2, Issue 9, page 12

From Tea Tables to Somatics


Everything in Life Has Purpose

LIFE I composed of purposes and methods. This is the
overwhelmingly evident fact which is yet
not realized by the millions having those purposes and using
those methods. Everything
visible is a method. Everything you can in any way sense is a
method, from a teatable to a
somatic. And all these methods serve a purpose, a good purpose,
though that purpose may be
hidden in the past and its results now be designated "bad".

A tea-table is a method of supporting food and implements, at
which one can sit and eat
in comfort. The fork you hold is a method of conveying food to
the mouth, and the knife is a
method of cutting and slicing that food.

The room in which you sit is a method of obtaining privacy and
comfort. The house is a
method of protecting you from the elements, wind and rain. The
garage outside is a method of
sheltering and storing the car. The car is a method of

And so on, methods all around you, whereever you look. But what
about that somatic? is
that a method? What is its purpose? It will be better to look at
this later, when it will be
more comprehensible. Let us first return to some of the physical
methods mentioned, and
analyze them.

The car: This is a method of transportation. Or is it? It is a
very big car, beautifully
streamlined and laden with shiny chrome, and its fittings are
expensively lush. It has caused
many heartaches to its owner, John Clark, when people have
scratched or knocked it. It seemed
as if you were scratching his prestige if you scratched the
enamel or chrome of his car.

With his family, they drive into the Avenue. There is Smith's
car, and looking
scornfully at it, Clark's wife says: "Very dilapidated; you would
think Smith had either no
pride or money." Clark smirks and drives on, agreeing.

Is that car, then, a method of transportation? or is it a method
with which Clark and
his wife obtain PRESTIGE? Does it make them happy? No, not
really, for it creates anxiety in
case it gets damaged or in case Smith buys a bigger and shinier
one. Also, it cost a packet
of money, and its upkeep is prohibitive. It doesn't create
happiness because it is not
basically serving its true purpose.

What about the house? That also is big and expensive--bigger and
more costly than its
owner can really afford. A house should serve the purpose of
achieving comfortable living-but
this one doesn't. Its social purpose, too, Is the obtaining of
PRESTIGE, and as such it
creates anxiety and uncertainty in its owner-who is more "used"
by his possessions than he
uses them.

At the end of the Avenue is a doctor. He


is an unhappy man, more fond of the open air, trees, and birds
than of medicine and sick
people. Why is this? A doctor is a method of healing--but this
doctor's parents, when he was
a boy, were convinced that his taking UP the "profession" of a
doctor was of vital
importance, for this way their son would gain standing in the
community; i.e. prestige. So,

this doctor is a doctor because his parents were thinking of
social standing. No wonder he is
unhappy. He would make a good farmer, but instead he is a doctor,
not really to serve the
purpose of healing people but to serve his parents' desire for
social prestige.

Off the Avenue, on Main Street, is a factory, and in it the
employees are contemplating
strike action. Their purpose is to obtain more pay. They have had
a meeting at which fiery
union members used hard words against employers in general, thus
arousing feeling against
their own employer. So the method of negotiation was quickly
thrust aside, and the aggressive
one of strike-action put in its place. A pity, for negotiation,
given a little time for
mutually helpful terms to be reached--increased production for
increased pay--would have
worked, but the strike will bring discord and suffering on both

Let us return to the Avenue. Down it walks Jackie Brown, with a
pronounced limp, holding
his hip. Oddly, the expression on his face is not one of pain but
of secret pleasure. Why?
Because his mother told him he need not go to school this day, if
his hip aches badly from
the injury it sustained some weeks ago at school cricket. That
aching hip is now valuable,
serving a GOOD purpose. When Jackie grows up, and the ache
becomes pronounced when he is due
to go to work, he will curse it, call it bad names, and wonder
why doctors can do nothing
with it. This is the somatic, mentioned earlier, which is a
method serving a "good" purpose.
And so do all somatics, and other conditions of ill health, serve
good purposes though the
users no longer think so.

Can you see in all these examples the clear working of purposes
and methods, with the
results that stem from them? You can? Well, the users of these
methods cannot. They are
caught in the confused values of this social world we live in, in
which methods become
tangled, their values distorted, and the purposes are either not
known or forgotten.

Purposes and methods--these constitute society, and life in
action anywhere. A somatic
serves a purpose just as the Sun does, and both are in existence
for the same fundamental
reasons, though the actual purposes of both these methods, in
their different ways, are no
longer fully realized.

It should be added that all purposes come into existence through
the mechanism of
ACCEPTANCE--an acceptance of something as desirable (i.e.
"good"), or as a fact (i.e.
"true"), I whether by agreement, decision, or conclusion. Because
we automatically and
unthinkingly accept the ideas and beliefs of others around us we
too become social beings
having social purposes. This process begins very early in life.
Many of these social purposes
break down and limit the full range of perception that actually
exists, so that our original
full contact with the universe shrinks down to the "normal"
social world we see.

(ED. NOTE--Kenneth Hart. author of the above. is the London

representative for Human En and only recently re-

Engineering, ,
turned to Ergira after sting a course of training at

Fairhope, Ala.

Stars appear brighter at night than during the day. But they

12 The 1956