Being Brave

I don't want to go and do 'Liar' again, because I can do it very well. I can probably sing it better now than when I wrote it. You're better at it when you get old, in a way. You get grey and then you get good. But what would that say about me?

The braver thing to do is that which makes me unsure ... It sounds corny, but I spend hours agonising over what is the bravest thing I can do.

I have to find reasons to get up in the morning. I have to keep finding new summits, new things to climb.

I'm continually looking at ways to stick it to the man. That sounds corny, but I love that term.

[Henry Rollins]

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Extraversion and Introversion

Extraversion

Extraversion is characterized by interest in the external object, responsiveness, and a ready acceptance of external happenings, a desire to influence and be influenced by events, a need to join in and get "with it," the capacity to endure bustle and noise of every kind, and actually find them enjoyable, constant attention to the surrounding world, the cultivation of friends and acquaintances, none too carefully selected, and finally by the great importance attached to the figure one cuts, and hence a strong tendency to make a show of oneself.

The disinclination to submit his own motives to critical examination is very pronounced. He has no secrets he has not long since shared with others. Should something unmentionable befall him, he prefers to forget it. Anything that might tarnish the parade of optimism and positivism is avoided. Whatever he thinks, intends and does is displayed with conviction and warmth.

He lives in and through others; all self-communings give him the creeps. Dangers lurk there which are better drowned out by noise. If he should ever have a "complex," he finds refuge in the social whirl and allows himself to be assured several times a day that everything is in order.

Introversion

The introvert is not forthcoming, he is as though in continual retreat before the object. He holds aloof from external happenings, does not join in, has a distinct dislike of society as soon as he finds himself among too many people. In large gatherings he feels lonely and lost. He is not in the least "with it" and has no love of enthusiastic get-togethers. He is not a good mixer.

What he does, he does in his own way, barricading himself against influences from outside. He is apt to appear awkward, often seeming inhibited, and it frequently happens that, by a certain brusqueness of manner, or by his glum unapproachability, or some kind of malapropism, he causes unwitting offence to people.

His better qualities he keeps to himself, and generally does everything he can to dissemble them. He is easily mistrustful, self-willed, often suffers from inferiority feelings and for this reason is also envious.

His apprehensiveness of the object is not due to fear, but to the fact that it seems to him negative, demanding, overpowering or even menacing. He therefore suspects all kinds of bad motives, has an everlasting fear of making a fool of himself, is usually very touchy and surrounds himself with a barbed wire entanglement so dense and impenetrable that finally he himself would rather do anything than sit behind it.

His picture of the world lacks rosy hues, as he is over-critical and finds a hair in every soup.

For him self-communings are a pleasure. His own company is the best. His best work is done with his own resources, on his own initiative, and in his own way. If he ever succeeds, after long and wearisome struggles, in assimilating something alien to himself, he is capable of turning it to excellent account.

Crowds, majority views, public opinion, popular enthusiasm never convince him of anything, but merely make him creep still deeper into his shell.

His relations with other people become warm only when safety is guaranteed, and when he can lay aside his defensive distrust. All too often he cannot, and consequently the number of friends and acquaintances is very restricted. The introvert shuts himself up with his complexes until he ends in complete isolation.

His retreat into himself is not a final renunciation of the world, but a search for quietude, where alone it is possible for him to make his contribution to the life of the community. This type of person is the victim of numerous misunderstandings - not unjustly, for he actually invites them. Not can he be acquitted of the charge of taking a secret delight in mystification, and that being misunderstood gives him a certain satisfaction, since it reaffirms his pessimistic outlook.

Overview

Everyone possesses both mechanisms, extraversion as well as introversion, and only the relative predominance of one or the other determines the type.

[C.G. Jung]
The Essential Jung, p.130, 140, 141, 142, 143

Build it Up, or Tear it Down?

[...] all criticism [has] the power to do good when there is something to be destroyed, dissolved, or reduced, but capable only of harm when there is something to be built.

[C.G. Jung]
The Essential Jung, p.151

Reasonable paths

It is a fundamental error to try to subject our own fate at all costs to our will. Our will is a function regulated by reflection; hence it is dependent on the quality of that reflection. This, if it really is reflection, is supposed to be rational, i.e., in accord with reason.

But has it ever been shown, or will it ever be, that life and fate are in accord with reason, that they too are rational?

The further we go in the direction selected by reason, the surer we may be that we are excluding the irrational possibilities of life which have just as much right to be lived.

[C.G. Jung]
The Essential Jung, p.155

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Masked Hero

[...] the banal everyday makes banal demands upon our patience, our devotion, perseverance, self-sacrifice; and for us to fulfil these demands (as we must) humbly and without courting applause through heroic gestures, a heroism is needed that cannot be seen from the outside.

It does not glitter, is not belauded, and it always seeks concealment in everyday attire. These are the demands which, if not fulfilled, are the cause of neurosis.


[C.G. Jung]
The Essential Jung, p.154

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Go Your Own Way

Personality: the supreme realization of the innate idiosyncrasy of a living being.

Personality can never develop unless the individual chooses his own way, consciously and with moral deliberation.

A man can make a moral decision to go his own way only if he holds that way to be the best. If any other way were held to be better, then he would live and develop that other personality instead of his own. The other ways are conventionalities of a moral, social, political, philosophical, or religious nature. The fact that the conventions always flourish in one form or another only proves that the vast majority of mankind do not choose their own way, but convention, and consequently develop not themselves but a method and a collective mode of life at the cost of their own wholeness.

The smaller the personality, the dimmer and more unconscious it becomes, until finally it merges indistinguishably with the surrounding society, thus surrendering its own wholeness and dissolving into the wholeness of the group. In the place of the inner voice there is the voice of the group with its conventions, and vocation [the path of the inner voice] is replaced by collective necessities.

Conventions are soulless mechanisms that can never understand more than the mere routine of life. Creative life always stands outside convention. That is why, when the mere routine of life predominates in the form of convention and tradition, there is bound to be a destructive outbreak of creative energy.

The mechanism of convention keeps people unconscious, for in that state they can follow their accustomed tracks like blind brutes, without the need for conscious decision. This unintended result of even the best conventions is unavoidable, but is no less a terrible danger for that.

[C.G. Jung]
The Essential Jung, p.195, 198, 202

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'Has due recognition been given', Winnicott asks pointedly, 'to the need for everything to be discovered afresh by every individual analyst?' It was a position reactive to a Society which had, in Winnicott's view, equated development within a tradition with an uncritical compliance to the tradition.

[Adam Phillips]
Winnicott, p.91

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[...] we cannot expect him always to be the aristos. We are all sometimes of the Many. But he will avoid membership.

There can be no organization to which he fully belongs; no country, no class, no church, no political party. He needs no uniform, no symbols; his ideas are his uniform, his actions are his symbols, because above all he tries to be a free force in a world of tied forces.

[John Fowles]
The Aristos, p.212

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[On 'modern-minded man']

His highest hope is to think first what is about to be thought, to say what is about to be said, and to feel what is about to be felt; he has no wish to think better thoughts than his neighbours, to say things showing more insight, or to have emotions which are not those of some fashionable group, but only to be slightly ahead of others in points of time.

Quite deliberately he suppresses what is individual in himself for the sake of the admiration of the herd.

To be pointed out, admired, mentioned constantly in the press, and offered easy ways of earning much money is highly agreeable; and when all this is open to a man, he finds it difficult to go on doing the work that he himself thinks best and is inclined to subordinate his judgement to general opinion.

[Bertrand Russell]
Unpopular Essays ('On Being Modern-minded'), p.78, 79

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Sometimes a man stands up during supper
and walks outdoors, and keeps on walking,
because of a church that stands somewhere in the East.
And his children say blessings on him as if he were dead.

And another man, who remains inside his own house,
dies there, inside the dishes and in the glasses,
so that his children have to go out into the world
toward that same church, which he forgot.

[Rainer Maria Rilke]
Selected Poems of Rainer Maria Rilke

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April You don't want to go, do you?

Frank Come on, April. Of course I do.

April No, you don't. Because you've never tried at anything. And if you don't try at anything, you can't fail.

Frank What the hell do you mean I don't try? I support you, don't I? I pay for this house. I work 10 hours a day at a job I can't stand.

April You don't have to.

Frank - Bullshit! Look, I'm not happy about it. But I have the backbone not to run away from my responsibilities.

April It takes backbone to lead the life you want, Frank.

Dialogue from Revolutionary Road (film)

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Soul Possession

Wherever an impassioned, almost magical, relationship exists between the sexes, it is invariably a question of a projected soul-image.

If the soul-image is projected, the result is an absolute affective tie to the object. If it is not projected, a relatively unadapted state develops, which Freud has described as narcissism. The projection of the soul-image offers a release from preoccupation with one's inner processes so long as the behaviour of the object is in harmony with the soul-image. The subject is then in a position to live out his persona and develop it further.

In a normal man the soul-image is not distinguished by any particular clarity, purity, or depth, but is apt to be rather blurred. In men with a good-natured and unaggressive persona, the soul-image has a rather malevolent character.

For an idealistic woman, a depraved man is often the bearer of the soul-image; hence the "saviour-fantasy" so frequent in such cases. The same thing happens with men, when the prostitute is surrounded with the halo of a soul crying for succour.

[C.G. Jung]
The Essential Jung, p.104,105

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Bright Spark

I wanna stay focused on expressing and creating, providing, amplifying that sensation, that mindset, that little spark in all of us that is geared towards good, that is geared towards what we consider fun, that’s geared towards doing what we think is nice. Being kind, being loving. Focusing on those really good feelings.

We all have that capacity and that awareness and that understanding of what that idea is, even if we haven’t always acted upon that idea. It’s always present within us.

So whatever I do, in any direction, I hope that it ultimately points towards that feeling. In the future, I kind of am excited that I don’t exactly know where it’s gonna go, what it’s gonna be, but I have a good sense that it’s gonna stay focused on that sensation of happiness.

[Andrew WK]

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Playing with Ourselves

We realize that what we like and what our tastes are don’t necessarily define the spirit of what we truly are deep down inside. And that we should have fun with our tastes.

Those pursuits—searching out songs, finding out about artists, or just experiences that entertain us, that delight us — that’s what makes life fun and worth living.

And I want us to remember how playful that should be. And the minute it starts to hold us back or feel stressful, or that we have to cling too hard to any one idea of ourselves, it’s just good to step back and kind of remember that it’s all just supposed to be fun. So I guess that means to not take things too seriously.

[Andrew WK]

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Devils in the Dark

All those allegedly accidental inhibitions, fancies, moods, vague feelings, and scraps of fantasy that hinder concentration and disturb the peace of mind even of the most normal man, and that are rationalized away as being due to bodily causes and suchlike, usually have their origin, not in the reasons consciously ascribed to them, but in perceptions of unconscious processes.

One man will not allow himself to be disturbed in the slightest by his inner processes - he can ignore them completely; another man is just as completely at their mercy - as soon as he wakes up some fantasy or other, or a disagreeable feeling, spoils his mood for the whole day; a vaguely unpleasant sensation puts the idea into his head that he is suffering from a secret disease, a dream fills him with gloomy forebodings ...

[C.G. Jung]
The Essential Jung, p.99, 100

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Complex

[...] a conglomeration of psychic contents characterized by a peculiar or perhaps painful feeling-tone, something that is usually hidden from sight. It is as though a projectile struck through the thick layer of the persona into the dark layer. For instance, someone with a money complex will be hit when you say: "To buy," "to pay," or "money." That is a disturbance of reaction.

Complexes behave like Descartes' devils and seem to delight in playing impish tricks. They slip just the wrong word into one's mouth, they make one forget the name of the person one is about to introduce, they cause a tickle in the throat just when the softest passage is being played on the piano at a concert, they make the tiptoeing latecomer trip over a chair with a resounding crash. They bid us congratulate the mourners at a burial instead of condoling with them, they are the instigators of all those maddening things which F. T. Vischer attributed to the "mischievousness of the object."

[C.G. Jung]
The Essential Jung, p.34, 39

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A great number of apparently insoluble problems disappear at once if we decide to give up the notion that the motives by which people believe themselves to be motivated are necessarily the ones which actually drive them to act, feel, and think as they do.

[Erich Fromm]
The Fear of Freedom, p.118

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Cast No Shadow?

All gaps in our actual knowledge are still filled out with projections. We are still so sure we know what other people think or what their true character is. We are convinced that certain people have all the bad qualities we do not know in ourselves or that they practice all those vices which could, of course, never be our own.

We must still be exceedingly careful not to project our own shadows too shamelessly; we are still swamped with projected illusions. If you imagine someone who is brave enough to withdraw all these projections, then you get an individual who is conscious of a considerable shadow [...]

Such a man knows that whatever is wrong in the world is in himself, and if he only learns to deal with his own shadow he has done something real for the world ... How can anyone see straight when he does not even see himself and the darkness he unconsciously carries with him into all his dealings?

[C.G. Jung]
The Essential Jung, p.242, 243

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During the process of treatment [psycho-analysis] the dialectical discussion leads logically to a meeting between the patient and his shadow, that dark half of the psyche which we invariably get rid of by means of projection: either by burdening our neighbours - in a wider or narrower sense - with all the faults we obviously have ourselves, or by casting our sins upon a divine mediator [through repentance].

[C.G. Jung]
The Essential Jung, p.279

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... if one can conceive of a fully integrated person, then that person takes full responsibility for all feelings and ideas that belong to being alive. By contrast, it is a failure of integration when we need to find the things we disapprove of outside ourselves and do so at a price - this price being the loss of the destructiveness which really belongs to ourselves.

I am talking, therefore, about the development which has to take place in every individual of the capacity to take responsibility for the whole of that individual's feelings and ideas, the word 'health' being closely linked with the degree of integration which makes it possible for this to happen.

One thing about a healthy person is that he or she does not have to use in a big way the technique of projection in order to cope with his or her own destructive impulses and thoughts.

[D.W. Winnicott]
Home Is Where We Start From: Essays By A Psychoanalyst ('Aggression, Guilt and Reparation'), p.82

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The person you hate the most and you're most angry at, understand every reason why you're angry at them. Understand every reason why they might be doing that.

[Andrew W.K.]

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The personal shadow works destructively against ego-ideals; the collective shadow tries to demolish collective ideals. Both these shadows also have a very valuable function.

Both ego and collective ideals must be repeatedly subjected to attack, since they are false and one-sided. Were they not continually being eaten into from the depths of the human soul, there would be neither individual nor collective development.

[Adolf Guggenb├╝hl-Craig]
Power In The Helping Professions, p.113

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Schopenhauer's conception of moral awareness is consistent with his project of seeking more tranquil, transcendent states of mind. Within the moral realm specifically, this quest for transcendence leads him to maintain that once we recognize each human as being merely an instance and aspect of the single act of Will that is humanity itself, we will appreciate that the difference between the tormentor and the tormented is illusory, and that in fact, the very same eye of humanity looks out from each and every person.

For Schopenhauer, according to the true nature of things, each person has all the sufferings of the world as his or her own, for the same inner human nature ultimately bears all of the pain and all of the guilt. Thus, with the consciousness of humanity in mind, a moral consciousness would realize that it has upon and within itself, the sins of the whole world

Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy, 'Arthur Schopenhauer'

Tormentor and tormented are one. The former is mistaken in thinking he does not share the torment, the latter in thinking he does not share the guilt. If the eyes of both were opened, the inflicter of the suffering would recognize that he lives in everything that suffers pain in the whole wide world, and, if endowed with the faculty of reason, ponders in vain over why it was called into existence for such great suffering, whose cause and guilt it does not perceive.

On the other hand, the tormented person would see that all the wickedness that is or ever was perpetrated in the world proceeds from that will which constitutes also his own inner being, and appears also in him.

[Arthur Schopenhauer]
The World as Will and Representation, p.354

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[...] The offense is felt to be against the order and natural structure of the universe rather than against the actual person offended. The offender, even in such serious matters as incest (for which he may be extruded from the society) is not blamed for anything worse than stupidity and clumsiness. Rather, he is "an unfortunate person" (anak latjoer), and misfortune may come to any of us "when it is our turn."

[Gregory Bateson]
Steps to an Ecology of Mind ('Bali: The Value System of a Steady State'), p.119

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