I was searching for Jungs thought of the self in childhood and came across this text by Joel Taylor Ryce.
“.. Jung was concerned with the relationship between the partial and total personality and envisaged a totality so as to understand the particular from the whole. It is the development of the psychological individual as differentiated from the general and collective psychology. The child, however, does not need to give deep consideration to what is generally accepted. Children tend to take a collective or one-sided view, as an individual standpoint if that involves becoming free from one-sided tendencies through a symbolical solution which would require that its opposites will be given complete equality..”
This is not just about the self in early childhood, but just as much about how it acts as a regulating factor in all people. Even in adults. The Self as that child in all of us. But only recognised as a compulsory regulating conviction, or as symbolic ideals re-establishing personal balance. With the underlying process as the one Jung described above.
He continues: “An example analogous to this general idea would be how easy it is today to see in society how little people are able to let man’s argument count, although this capacity is fundamentally indispensable to a peaceful national or international community. To the degree that one does not admit the validity of the other person, he denies the ‘other’ within himself the right to exist, and vice versa. A symbolical solution to the inner dialogue of conscious and unconscious, which the transcendent function can enable, which is a “touch stone for outer objectivity”.
A similar insight that Jung formulated has also been formulated in a different way by Native American Lakota people as follows: “When a person loses his/her 7th Direction(The Self), he/she falls into a pattern in which he/she attempts to separate everything into two opposing extremes (i.e. good vs. evil); thus, creating a fine line between them. Also, this person will try to always agree with one of the extremes. Doing so creates tension and stress, as this person seeks to continuously either try to prove his/her opponent to be incorrect. This person will also try to convert his/her opponent to accept his/her views. If this person cannot convert his/her opponents to accept his/her views, then he/she tries to oppress these opponents. This reveals this person’s need to control others who are different than him/her-self, as well as his/her fear of those who are different than him/her-self. If this opponent chooses to react to this oppressor, this opponent becomes a victim to the oppressor. Soon both the oppressor and victim need each other to exist. This creates an unhealthy cycle of abuse which leads to death and little (if any) soul development, as the thought processes of both the oppressor and the victim become addictive.”
These similarities that, regardless of time and space, for some reason have been revealed to me in my reflections on myself, my grandson and my world just when I need it, actually make me speechless. How can this be??
It’s actually remarkable.