Chapter 2: What is Life Doing?

Chapter 2: What is Life Doing? 3

As you go through life, what’s driving you? In other words, what motivates your actions and decisions? What are you ultimately trying to do? What is the goal of life?

Well, let’s take a look at that blade of grass that’s forced its way up through the sidewalk.

What’s it doing? It’s surviving – just like every living thing, including you.

It’s as if every living thing is obeying one basic command – and that command is to SURVIVE!

SURVIVE is the one thing common to all life.

sunRiseNow, it’s not a new thought that man is surviving. But it is a new discovery that man is ultimately and only trying to survive.

It’s the motivating force behind all of your activities. Everything you do, every thought, every decision, and every behaviour – everything – is driven by your urge to survive.

And it’s important to understand this, because it has everything to do with how your mind thinks – as you’ll soon see.

Now, survival is not just matter of being alive one moment and dead the next. You’re not only trying to live as long as possible, but as well as possible. So there are degrees of survival.

Some people are just barely surviving while others are surviving at a high level of happiness and accomplishment.

How well are you surviving?

To understand how well you’re surviving, you’d have to know what you’re surviving for. Now, you might think you’re surviving only for yourself. Or perhaps you think you’re surviving for the sake of sex and reproduction. Or maybe it’s for the sake of a group, or only for Mankind.

Well, none of these factors alone can explain all your activities. You’re actually surviving for all of them.

the4dynamicsyour basic thrust to survive can be subdivided into 4 thrusts – 4 urges to survival.
In Dianetics, these are called the FOUR DYNAMICS.

A dynamic in this sense is the urge to survive along a certain course.

For example, the first dynamic is your urge to reach the highst potential of survival for yourself. It covers the general field of food, clothing and shelter, personal ambition and your individual purpose.

The Second Dynamic is your thrust toward potential immortality through children and includes all sexual activity as well as the creation and rearing of children.

The Third Dynamic is your urge to survive through groups, as a member of the group or for the survival of the group itself. This includes the group you work with, or any clubs or teams you belong to. Even the country you live in is a group.

The Fourth Dynamic is your urge to survive for Mankind or the urge of all Mankind to survive.

If you’re operating at your own optimum, you would be seeking to survive as best as possible along all four of your dynamics.

But if you are not surviving well in one or more of these areas of your life, then you’re ultimately not going to be surviving well in general. You need a strong dynamic thrust to battle and beat life’s obstacles in your pursuit of happiness and success. And you need rational solutions for problems that threaten to lessen your potential to survive.

familyIf you were functioning at your absolute optimum, your thrust would be very strong. A person who is cleared of the effects of his reactive mind operates in this manner. His solutions for the problems he faces are rational and survival-oriented, because nothing is throwing off his computations.

But when the reactive mind enters irrational information into those calculations, irrational thoughts and decisions result. You find yourself behaving in ways that hurt some or all of your dynamics. In this way, your urge to survive actually ends up hurting your survival.

That’s because your reactive mind thinks very differently than your analytical mind does. In fact, there are three kinds of thought – as you are about to see.

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