the psyche: land of many maps

psycheI delight in considering the human psyche and the human experience in general from as many different perspectives as possible. I find that lack of attachment or belief to the different systems is rather essential. I enjoy developing this skill as it has allowed me to speak with far many more individuals about their personal experience than would be possible otherwise. I think it would be lovely if this was a skill that was taught to most, if not all, mental health workers. It’s really a required skill that allows for a deep respect that is all too often missing in the mental health care. It’s an assumption that people (everyone) actually knows what they’re talking about. And if we understand the context in which people understand themselves and their lives, it would become apparent.

I wrote this little aphorism the other day as a status update on Facebook:

Hold your interpretations lightly…allow the narrative of your story to change…

In so doing it’s allowed me to open up my world…all our explanations for reality are only approximations of the truth. By not holding onto what I was told about my body and mind I am able to heal and grow in ways that many don’t even believe is possible. I’ve seen others do the same.  It’s the reason I also talk about reframing our experience.

I go one step further and practice not attaching to any of the frames I might use allowing for expansion and fluidity of thought and understanding always. A holistic view can use many lenses to look at the same issue. Sometimes they may even seem to contradict on the surface of things. But really they’re just all pieces of the kaleidoscope of reality. Because everything matters and it’s all interlinked.

Two more brief thoughts also from Facebook:

The psyche: a land of many maps…every mythology, religion and personal story speaks to it…

I’m multi-lingual in things of the psyche…that seems to confuse some people with some frequency…

Posts and collections of posts that deal with the psyche from different frameworks:

And because they both share the above perspective about the psyche too:

  • Posts that feature the work of Carl Jung  – Anyone who wants to know the human psyche will learn next to nothing from experimental psychology. He would be better advised to abandon exact science, put away his scholar’s gown, bid farewell to his study, and wander with human heart throughout the world. There in the horrors of prisons, lunatic asylums and hospitals, in drab suburban pubs, in brothels and gambling-hells, in the salons of the elegant, the Stock Exchanges, socialist meetings, churches, revivalist gatherings and ecstatic sects, through love and hate, through the experience of passion in every form in his own body, he would reap richer stores of knowledge than text-books a foot thick could give him, and he will know how to doctor the sick with a real knowledge of the human soul.
  • Posts the feature the work of Joseph Campbell   – I have a firm belief in this now, not only in terms of my own experience, but in knowing the experiences of other people. When you follow your bliss, and by bliss I mean the deep sense of being in it, and doing what the push is out of your own existence – it may not be fun, but it’s your bliss, and there’s bliss behind pain too….You follow that and doors will open where there were no doors before, where you would not have thought there’d be doors, and where there wouldn’t be a door for anybody else. There’s something about the integrity of a life. And the world moves in and helps. It really does….And I think the best thing I can say is to follow your bliss. If your bliss is just your fun and your excitement, you’re on the wrong track. I mean, you need instruction. Know where your bliss is. And that involves coming down to a deep place in yourself.  

Lastly, a lovely video that also speaks to the terrain of the psyche: Madness as a reckoning of one’s own psyche. Yes.

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