Associations work in a definite way in each person. I see a man making a certain movement. This gives me a prompt, and from this associations start. Perhaps I am a policeman and I assume from the movement that the man wants to pick my pocket. But supposing the man never thought of my pocket, I, as the policeman, would not have understood the movement. If I am a priest, I have other associations; I think the movement has something to do with the soul, though the man is actually thinking of my pocket.
Only if I know the psychology both of the priest and of the policeman, and their different approaches, can I understand with my mind; only if I have corresponding feelings and postures in my body can I know with my mind what will be their thinking associations, and also which thinking associations evoke in them which feeling associations. This is the first point.
Knowing the machine, I give orders every moment for associations to change—but I have to do this at every moment. Every moment associations change automatically, one evokes another and so on. If I am acting, I have to direct at every moment. It is impossible to leave it to momentum. And I can direct only if there is someone present who is able to direct.
My thought cannot direct—it is occupied. My feelings are also occupied. So there must be someone there who is not engaged in acting, not engaged in life—only then is it possible to direct.
A man who has “I” and who knows what is required in every respect can act. A man who has no “I” cannot act.
An ordinary actor cannot play a role—his associations are different. He may have the appropriate costume and keep approximately to suitable postures, make grimaces as the producer or the author directs. The author must also know all this.
In order to be a real actor, one must be a real man. A real man can be an actor and a real actor can be a man.
Everyone should try to be an actor. This is a high aim. The aim of every religion, of every knowledge, is to be an actor. But at present all are actors.