Characteristics of the real sublime?


The concept of the "real sublime" versus the "false sublime" is explored by Robert Greene during his discussion with . Here are the key characteristics of the real sublime:

Real Sublime

  • Transformative Experience: It is deeply impactful and lasting, often altering the individual's perception and understanding for a lifetime. An example given by Robert Greene refers to what Maslow called "peak experiences" 1.
  • Innate and Authentic: These experiences arise from within, rather than being induced by external substances or activities like drugs, alcohol, or consumerism. They are connected to the core of human nature and the brain's wiring for transcendental experiences 1 2.
  • Recognition of Larger Connection: The real sublime makes one feel connected to something greater, whether it's a cosmic power, evolution, or deeper aspects of life. This connection is transformative and deeply personal 1.
  • Transcending the Everyday: It involves transcending beyond the mundane aspects of life and accessing a state beyond the conventional and acceptable norms of thought and behavior in society 2.

False Sublime

  • Temporary Relief: Provides a fleeting sense of calm and escapism but lacks depth and sustainability. These experiences are transient and do not truly fulfill or transform the individual 1.
  • Externally Induced: Comes from outside sources like drugs, alcohol, and various forms of external stimuli that provide short-term pleasure or distraction but fail to connect with the deeper human experience 1.
  • Dependency and Escalation: Often leads to a need for more of the same stimuli to achieve the same initial effect, creating a cycle of dependency rather than fulfillment 1.

Both and Robert Greene delve into how profound and genuinely sublime experiences can activate a deep, almost primordial joy and curiosity, driving one to explore and learn more about the wondrous aspects of existence, sparking long-term inspiration and satisfaction 1.

The Real vs. False Sublime

Robert and Andrew discuss the difference between false and real sublime experiences, highlighting how the false sublime is temporary and unsatisfying, while the real sublime is transformative and lasts a lifetime. They explore the activation state created by sublime experiences and the desire to learn more and share them with others.

Huberman Lab

Robert Greene: A Process for Finding & Achieving Your Unique Purpose