Archive | August 2020

Double-Bind and “21st Century Schizoid Man”

The circumstances of life in Late Modernity, and the transition between Ages, place everyone in a situation of double-bind. It is this double-bind situation that manifests as extremes of cognitive dissonance and of self-contradiction, which are symptomatic of the breakdown and disintegration of the consciousness structure and, consequently too, of the personality and character structure of the modern “Self”.

It is not difficult to understand the double-bind situation. The old demands our loyalty and obedience, while the new demands our transformation and metamorphosis. These are conflicting demands and, as Scripture put it, no man can serve two masters. In effect, then, consciousness itself becomes a house divided against itself, and the result is “21st Century Schizoid Man”.

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Rough Passage Through the Dire Straits

Today we’ll address our present “chaotic transition” as rough passage — a nautical term that is quite appropriate for this turbulence and sense of rought passage given the symbolism of the soul as water, ocean, or sea and the ego consciousness as akin to a mere cork bobbing along on the surface of the waters. The return of the repressed is rough passage.

So, we will attempt here to give answer to two of Jean Gebser’s existential questions: “Where do we come from? Who are we? Where are we going?” which were actually French artist Paul Guaguin’s questions which he worked into a painting with that title.

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Dis was the Roman name for what we call “Hell” or what the Greeks called “Hades”. It is the underworld. That meme also recently resurfaced as “the Underverse” in one of The Chronicles of Riddick movie series. In effect, Dis corresponds to the thantos instinct (Freud) or the “death-pole” (Gebser) of psychic energy, often symbolised by “The Black Sun” and corresponding to what Jung called “The Shadow”.

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