["Couple - Tlaxcala Capilla Plaza 2008", Tlaxcala, Mexico. Oil paint effect application. Photo by Warren Falcon. Click on photo to enlarge.]
PLEASE NOTE that the addictions conference referred to here and in the June 2009 Learning For Life Group Newsletter is NOT a Fordham University conference but the NYC NASW Addictions Institute, that happens to be held at Fordham University. Outside of provision of the space, Fordham has nothing to do with the conference.
PLEASE NOTE that the addictions conference referred to here and in the June 2009 Learning For Life Group Newsletter is NOT a Fordham University conference but the NYC NASW Addictions Institute, that happens to be held at Fordham University. Outside of provision of the space, Fordham has nothing to do with the conference.
"It has been found again!
It is the sea mingled with the sun"
-- from "Alchemy of the Word", Artur Rimbaud, A Season in Hell
(Oliver Bernard's translation).
It is the sea mingled with the sun"
-- from "Alchemy of the Word", Artur Rimbaud, A Season in Hell
(Oliver Bernard's translation).
Like a good Zen student Mephistopheles
says, "Myself am hell."
So all the old accounts are mistaken.
We need to translate,
the meanings are turned around:
for his screams read, "Delight,"
and for the tortures he undergoes,
read, "he does not shut out
any part of himself."
-- from "Spell To Be Chanted While Dispelling Loneliness," John Tarrant,
Beneath a Single Moon: Buddhism in Contemporary American Poetry,
Kent Johnson, Craig Paulenich Editors, 1989, pg. 310,
"In the deepest sense we all dream not of ourselves, but out of what lies between us and the other." -- pg. 173, Jung Letters, Vol. 1, C.G. Jung, Princeton University Press, 1973
‘I have occasionally described my standpoint to my friends as the "narrow ridge,"’ writes Buber. ‘I wanted by this to express that I did not rest on the broad upland of a system that includes a series of sure statements about the absolute, but on a narrow rocky ridge between the gulfs where there is no sureness of expressible knowledge but the certainty of meeting what remains undisclosed.’ (Martin Buber, Between Man and Man, trans. by Ronald Gregor Smith [London: Kegan Paul, 1947] p.184). Perhaps no other phrase so aptly characterizes the quality and significance of Martin Buber’s life and thought as this one of the ‘narrow ridge.’ It expresses not only the ‘holy insecurity’ of his existentialist philosophy but also the ‘I-Thou,’ or dialogical, philosophy which he has formulated as a genuine third alternative to the insistent either-or’s of our age. Buber’s ‘narrow ridge’ is no ‘happy middle’ which ignores the reality of paradox and contradiction in order to escape from the suffering they produce. It is rather a paradoxical unity of what one usually understands only as alternatives -- I and Thou, love and justice, dependence and freedom, the love of God and the fear of God, passion and direction, good and evil, unity and duality."
-- from Martin Buber: The Life of Dialogue by Maurice S. Friedman (online book: http://www.religion-online.org/showchapter.asp?title=459&C=371)
"The narrow ridge is the place where I and Thou meet," he [Buber] added. When I asked him to clarify this symbolism to me, he replied...'If you like, you can think of the narrow ridge as a region within yourself where you cannot be touched. Because there you have found yourself: and so you are not vulnerable."
"I have already said that every Thou in our life is doomed to become and It, a thing. The man or Woman whom we love, whom we seek to fulfil totally, becomes a given imperfect person with a known nature and quality. A young medical student dreams passionately of curing suffering humanity. Then he becomes a doctor in a crowded hospital with pressure, with not enough time to devote to every patient. And the suffering humans become objects. They recede to the world of the It. This is the tragedy of being human. And in order to avoid losing the I-Thou we must take our stand on the narrow ridge, as a company of soldiers takes up its position on an embattled hill and says, From here we shall not retreat!"
"And, as you have asked me for a clearer definition, I will say, the narrow ridge is the meeting place of the We. This is where man can meet man in community. And only men are who are capable of truly saying "Thou" to another can truly say "We" with one another. If each guards the narrow ridge within himself and keeps it intact, this meeting can take place."
-- pg. 69-70, from Encounter With Martin Buber, by Aubrey Hodes, Penguin Books, 1972
Michael Eigen recounts:
"I saw Martin Buber speak in a big synagogue...I don't remember much about what he said...But I was fascinated by the way Buber spoke. Too mannered, perhaps, but entrancing -- the way he lowered his head into his arms after saying something, waiting for the next revelation. He took time between utterances, time to pause, to listen. For Buber, speaking was a way of listening. Shema Yisroael: "Hear, Israel." Buber heard, and when he heard, we heard. By speaking, Buber was teaching listening...For Buber, listening was electrifying. There was rest, quiet, pause between, but expect to be burnt by the tongue's fire...Buber's death between utterances was anticipatory. One emptied in order to be ready for the next Thou surge, from moment of meeting to moment of meeting, waves of impact...Emptiness and I-Thou moment of impact. We thrive on both. We need more than one breast, more than one eye."
-- pg. 154, The Psychoanalytic Mystic, Michael Eigen, Esf Publishers, 1998
From my personal NYC NASW Addictions Institute workshop notes (many beginnings, many options for beginnings with moving tenses, past and futurity) :
Ultimate question (since questions are orienting, orientations, they orient awareness, point/hint/guide/infer) :
What is "the say" in addiction? What is the declaration? the utterance?
In the most recent annual NYC NASW Addictions Institute the theme of the conference was "The Tie That Binds". The Learning For Life Group faculty taught two workshops that day, the morning workshop being a presentation of the intentional dialogue as taught by Harville Hendrix and Helen McKelly Hunt who developed Imago therapy, a therapy designed for couples and others in need of effective communication skills and strategies for hearing and perceiving each other and in so doing resolving or tolerating differences and individuality. The afternoon workshop was on "The Tie That Unbinds--Scapegoating and Addictions."
I opened the morning session by setting the tone for the workshop on intentional dialogue and its effectiveness for working with addicts and their families. In the afternoon workshop I spoke of the history of the scapegoat religious ritual and some of its permutations as an unconscious but ongoing ritual in groups and amongst individuals. I spoke some of the psychological dynamics of scapegoating -- projections, recollection, integation, revaluation/redemption. I used my scapegoat article in the LFLG September 2008 issue as my text for the historical setting of scapegoating (click here to read that essay: http://hosted.verticalresponse.com/261056/f9a90b25d3/1357000208/64e097a070/.
What follows are some of my rough notes which I drew upon for both workshops as well as some of the texts I read which set the tone of my presentation as well as informed and amplified my suppositions, surmises, and blind alleyed saunters and speculations. Please note, too, that all etymology of words is taken from this website: www.etymonline.com.
The notes contain repetitions as is the nature of note taking...repetition, too, is a means of learning and underscoring points...and as Milton Erickson, master hypnotherapist, says, "The unconscious can enjoy repetition..."
Thus the first of many repetitions is excerpted from below as it is from whence I take the title of my essay for the latest Learning For Life Group newsletter and this current offering on the blogspot extention:
Addiction- The More Insistent Voice, The Shout, The Scream to know and to be known, to perceive and to be perceived. "To be is to be perceived," says a pragmatist philosopher...and yet to be perceived can also be annihilating, fragmenting, destroying. The archetypal "eye of God," both aspects of it, the all-seeing and all-loving, compassionate eye, the Jesus-eye, the Bodhisatva-eye; and the seering, severe, burning, dissecting, judging eye...we are ambivalent toward being perceived, long for it as much as fear and shun and hide from it...contrary selves and oppositions, awareness of shadow and embrace of shadow...what kind of embrace? that of, say, Buddha wrestling for seven years beneath the Bodhi tree; that of Jesus overturning merchant tables in the synagogue or sweating drops of blood in Gethsemani, etc....one's animal self, instinctual self, too, is to be encountered on the narrow ridge, all held there in the durable, expansive, apparently boundless space which does not reject any part of itself, of existence, of even the other's existence as forbidden from the narrow ridge. Shadow, sin, brokeness is incorporated, tolerated, possibly even celebrated though super-egoic calibrations' turn toward ethics and morality regarding self and other. Eigen speaks of William Blake's notion of heaven "as all out war between every human capacity in which all have their say without compromise, yet incessantly enrich and are enriched by others. Here faith functions as a boundless or infinite container." pg. 124-125 PA/Mystic.
And thus I repeat, also, by republishing a prologue already published in an earlier blogspot essay on addictions (http://falconwarren.blogspot.com/2008/06/guess-whos-coming-to-dinner.html). Anticipating notes ahead below about Narcissus and Echo I succumb to echolalia and repeat myself but with purpose :
In approaching addictions, let us remove our shoes. Our feet may be burned, but this burning may return us toward some awareness of where we are not, what we have lost, what we seek to gain in gaining not only the bliss promised in the addiction but also the Dis within it, the Roman name for Hell, (dis-, a prefix meaning 1."lack of, not" (e.g. dishonest); 2."do the opposite of" (e.g. disallow); 3."apart, away" (e.g. discard)). Moses saw a traumatizing burning bush and was disfigured, refigured and transfigured from such seeing. Job hallucinated in his derangement of massive loss, grief, and illness a Behemoth God who sought to be withstood and contained in human perception, his consciousness having to contain this Dis side of the Deity and not be destroyed. He was altered in the beholding of this dark aspect of the deity, and so was the deity. A daimonic dialogue consciously made humbles that one who must behold such traumatizing vision. But even in this vision some arrangement, some order, some transmutation, transformation is sought by Dis itself. It is not rehabilitiated nor sanctified. It is made conscious, and consciousness does this thing to all that it turns its attention to. Renewal? Not necessarily, but It has a conscious place at the table, and that rearranges the meal. One can imagine the table talk to be had.
Table Talk, Above and Below,
Servers Within Ear Shot
Initial dream/hope for notes for the workshops:
Ah! I am so forsaken I will worship at any shrine impulses toward perfection.
-- Artur Rimbaud, from The Drunken Boat
My first and guiding presuppostition when a potential client with addiction(s) issues comes to me for counsel (actually this is presumed for all my clients) is that the client has an as yet to be made conscious capacity for a profound relationship to Life and Life Force/Sources (in Jungian terms, the Archetypal Energies/Realms). Some would call this God (Carl Jung calls it the Self as opposed to ego) or many names used to reference a Greater Reality, a Richer, Deeper Awareness and Experience of Existence/Being. Knowing that all addictions contain a sacred or depth dimension of psyche/soul I know that part of our work together will be, at the client's pace, of course, making conscious the telos or purpose hidden unconsciously in the addictive drive and behavior. The Greek word, telios, is also the word for perfection, which, as I'll repeat in these notes and in my workshops, is not the idea of purity, white light and uncontaminated-by- instincts-embodiedment (which is impossible) but is the idea of developing, evolving, maturing, ripening in consciousness from experience in space and time. Basho, the quintessential Haiku poet of the 17th century with monkish/acetic (i.e. perfectionist) leanings once wisely wrote, "I would be a monk but for the dust of the world upon my shoulders." One translator wrote, "but for the dusty world on my shoulders." Two important experiences in each translator's choices; the first indicating the dirtiness of the poet, he is dirty with and as the world, the second conveying that he is carrying the dirty, dusty world upon his shoulders. Both convey the human experience of dirtiness and the burden of the dirty world we carry.
To sum and to plumb ahead, initially, dizzily : Addicts are deeply, richly capable of depth dimensions of life experience, are capable of conscious reconnection to psyche/soul-in-life inwardly and outwardly. Their unique expression of this soulful and soul/depth/consciousness evolving encounter is not dependent on social strata, status, economy, heritage, race, gender, etc. Every individual cultivates consciously and unconsciously embodied soulfulness. Part of the etymology of addict means deliver, yield, devote. Devotion is an innate drive within humanity and it is expressed unconsciously and consciously. Devotion is not dependent upon particulars of religions and spiritual traditions alone which have evolved since homo sapiens became self-reflectively conscious. Devotion extends to all things in all realms or spectrums of consciousness. Addictions contain devotions/drives toward telos, completion, wholeness (a spacious, non-rejecting HOLDness of ALL aspects of self and other, of Existenz...thus my quote of John Tarrant's poem above -- "he does not shut out any part of himself" which is as good a definition of wholeness as any I've ever encountered), ripeness, maturity.
"To shut out" is to alienate, to estrange parts from self. This anticipates my notes on Tillich and Buber, estrangement and alienation from self, from Other, and from Dynamic Ground (Tao, God, First Cause, Atman, etc.).
For both workshops I will use Bodes quote on Buber explaining "the narrow ridge", then Eigen re: Buber on speaking/listening...do some etymology, as usual...include a Tillich quote re: 2 ways of approaching God which I say applies also to approaching humans. The main themes are estrangement and alienation, how to meet on the narrow ridge in authentic human encounter in "holy insecurity" (a la Buber) which paradoxically is established in authentic personhood (NOT sainthood), consciously shadow aware and working it, full instinctual humanity present and accounted for. from the body/instincts, post-Christianity, post-acetic Hindu/Buddhism/New-Age-"namaste-ole/au-lait" tendencies needs an application, as well.
But first, the etymology of the work etymology: from Gk. etymologia, from etymon "true sense" (neut. of etymos "true," related to eteos "true") + logos "word." In classical times, of meanings; later, of histories.
For workshop about the technique of intentional dialogue and addictions I'll utilize and amplify via the above quotes and my notes one of the essential meanings found in the etymology of the word addict since it literally addresses the realm of speaking. I want to repeatedly underscore this:
from L. addictus, pp. of addicere from ad- "to" + dicere "say, declare".
In addiction, therefore, something/someone is "having a say", something/someone is "making a declaration".
What is "the say" in the addiction?
What is the declaration? the utterance?
What wants to, insists upon being said?
A point to hammer:
-- from Psalm 19, King James Bible
"Night unto night sheweth knowledge"...which I take here to indicate the unconscious as the source of knowledge, of wisdom...day speech and night knowledge are sufficient dependencies...one must see the "glory"(etymology in part means opinion, also expectation) in the unconscious--the night realm's opinions and expectations sans day realms morality and law--in instincts, body impulses, images, dreams, symbols, symptoms, the etymology of which is from syn- "together" + piptein "to fall," from PIE base *pet- "to rush, to fly". Addiction as symptom which says, speaks, declares and sheweth/shows/indicates/points/hints, falls together, flies together, rushes together opinions/expectations of the unconscious which seeks balance, law of compensation, that which is in the conscious has its counterpart in the unconscious and vice versa. The "heavens" which declare the glory/opinion/expectation, these heavens are an image of depth, as in deep space, alluding to the depth dimensions of the unconscious...addictions are a falling together while breaking apart the ego...one thinks of Narcissus falling into the pool in order to be together with the image/imago he fell in love with reflected/mirrored there. He did not know himself. Narcissus the name is cognate with the word narcosis, narcotic which etymologically in Greek. narke means "numbness".
Addiction as symptom -- keep the etymology of both in mind as you read Edward Edinger here re: the myth of Narcissus' depth psychological meaning which by word etymology association deepens understanding of addiction:
"...The myth of Narcissus implies something quite different from an excess of indulgent self-love. Narcissus was a youth who rejected all suitors for his love. In reprisal, Nemesis arranged for him to fall in love with his own rejected image in a pool and he died in despair at nto being able to possess the object of his love."
"Narcissus represents the alienated ego that cannot love, that is, cannot give interest and libido to life--because it is not yet related to itself. To fall in love with the reflected image of oneself can only mean that one does not yet possess oneself. Narcissus yearns to unite with himself just because he is alienated from his own being. As Plato expressed in the Symposium, we love and yearn for what we lack. Narcissism in its original mythological implications is thus not a needless excess of self-love but rather just the opposite, a frustrated state of yearning for a self-possession which does not yet exist. The solution of the problem of Narcissus is the fufillment of self-love rather than its renunciation. We meet here a common error of the moralizing ego which tries to create a loving personality by extirpating self-love. This is a profound psychological mistake and only causes a psychic split. Fulfilled self-love is a prerequisite to the genuine love of any object, and to the flow of psychic energy in general."
"In the case of Narcissus, fulfillment of self-love, or union with the image of the depths, requires a descent into the unconscious, a nekyia or symbolic deasth. That this is the deeper meaning of the Narcissus myth is indicated by certaina other details. After Narcissus died he turned into the flower narcissus. This is the "death flower" (from narkao, to be stiff or dead). The narissus was sacred to Hades and opened the doors to his realm of the underworld...The inescapable conclusion is that narcissism, at least in its original mythological sense, is the way into the unconsciuos where one must go in quest of individuality." -- pgs. 161-162, Ego and Archetype, Edward Edinger, Penguin Press, 1973.
Another facet of the myth of Narcissus which relates to the mirroring which is basic to intentional dialogue is just that, mirroring, reflecting. Narcissus sees his reflected image in the mirror of the pool's surface. He had never seen himself. Mirroring, good mirroring helps us to see ourselves. Echo, a nymph also in love with Narcissus, also hints to the wounding and healing/wholing of Narcissus. Echo is a verbal mirroring of what is sounded, said, declared. Intentional dialogue is feelingly echoing the other who speaks themselves to another. A mirror shows. An utterance is echoed. A self perceives itself in the gaze and echo of the reflective, inflective other...
Utterance and showing, uttereth and sheweth --
Speech and image, speaking and demonstration/follow through,
depiction, speech acts, speaking as act, as commitment,
as making commitment followed by sheweth,
showing by action/demonstration.
My premise is that of Carl Jung's and of Alcoholics Anonymous, that there is an unconscious, yet to be made conscious, sacrality/religious function in the addiction, in the addict's repetitive (perverse yet hinting) pattern/behavior. Repetition compulsion. The compulsions which drive addictions have a religious (again, etymology is re-linking, re-connecting, binding back, rebinding, rebonding, the tie that binds) dimension seeking to reconnect, to bond the addict back to essential rejuvenating Forces and Sources, both personal and transpersonal (it's never either/or but a matter of emphasis in the course of therapy/counseling). The say, the declaration in addiction, yet to be made conscious, is what I call the More Insistent Voice, the Shout, the Scream, the Prayer (Diane Shainberg would ask a client, "What is the prayer in your suffering?") to know and be known, to be perceived, to be encountered authentically in such a way as to encounter one's essential (e-sin-tial) nature as it is. It is not a stretch to think of addiction in these terms since the very root meaning of the word addict relates to utterance/speech:
Important point to make about sacrality and the sacred -- distinguishing from the popular New Age sentiment (and the New Age is mostly sentimentality) of the sacred consisting only of white light, purity, stasis/stillness...this is also found in Christianity, Buddhism, Hinduism, and other religions, an acetic ideal of purity devoid of instinct, animal, nature...the way Jung uses sacred and sacrality includes the discarded, judged, shunned chthonic and numinous (meaning fraught with sacrality) shadow, the full spectrum of light from the subtle to the primary colors/emotions/viscera of existence, i.e. instincts, aggression, sexuality, shit, piss, puss, the dark, decaying, the so-called pathological, the "not spiritual"...
[As I transcribe these notes a song plays from the sudden synchronistic cyber-jukebox, "The Water Is Wide":
- The water is wide, I cannot cross o'er,
- But Neither have I the wings to fly.
- Give me a boat, that can carry two,
- And both shall row, my love and I.
- I leaned my back up against an oak
- I thought it was a trusty tree
- but first it bend and then it broke
- And so my love did unto me.
- A ship there is and she sails the sea,
- She's loaded deep as deep can be,
- But not so deep as the love I'm in
- I know not if I sink or swim.
- O love is handsome and love is fine
- And love's a jewel when it is new
- but love grows old and waxes cold
- And fades away like morning dew.]
Paul Tillich, existentialist Protestant theologian of the last century exiled to American from Germany as Other by the Nazi regime, speaks of "the Other as destiny"which strikes me as a given of human existence--at birth the infant is "one with everything, with the Maternal-Sempiternal ( (13c.) or L.L. sempiternalis, from L. sempiternus, from L. semper "always" (see semper-) + æternus "eternal"), with the Unconscious." At conception, at birth, one is destined to become a separate self as one becomes aware she/he is not the mother/other. This IS all our destiny. Most creation myths depict an identification with the Original Wholeness and then a separation, an awakening consciousness which breaks that participation mystique--a term derived from anthropology and the study of primitive psychology--denoting a mystical connection, or identity between subject and object, leading to separation and exile, wandering in hope of return to Original Wholeness. To return unconsciously is regressive but to return consciously is progressive which leads to ongoing creation of consciousness where one leaves identity with the Edenic Marternal Garden and participates in the conscious creation/building of the Kingdom of "God".
With ego awareness, with a self, we become aware of the Other, of ourselves as distinct from Other, that we are this destiny of separateness, of alienation, estrangement. Albert Camus, blessed be he, writes eloquently of "L'Estrangement". Thus all the more profound is Tillich's philosophical theology of encountering god and self as Stranger and as the possibility of (it is not a given for every human) overcoming estrangement (I understand 'overcoming' not as "getting over" but as tolerating the dynamic tension in self and other without resorting to the transcendent defense of "we are all one" even though we share univseral, rather, archetypal patterns experienced uniquely as individuals. The irony or paradox in the word individual is that it means undivided; read Edward Edinger here:
"The word individual is etymologically related to the word widow. According to Skeat, widow (Latin, vidua) derives from a lost cognate verb videre, meaning to part. Jung has demonstrated that the images of widow and orphan are part of the individuation process...Widow means the parted one. Hence, prior to widowhood one is not yet an individual, indivisible [which is what the word individual means, in = not, and dividere= to divide, thus not divided], but is still subject to the parting process. The symbolism tells us that widowhood is an experience on the pathway to the realization of individuality, in fact, that individuality is the son of that experience. This can only mean that man must be parted from that on which he is dependent but which he is not, before he can become aware of that which he is, unique and individual. A dependent projection must be broken. Similar implications apply to the image of the orphan which was a synonym for the alchemists' philosophers' stone. To be orphaned denotes the loss of parental support and the breaking of parental projections; it is likewise a prerequisite of the conscious experience of individuality. As Augustine puts it, to be a widow or orphan relates one to God (the Self)." pgs. 162-163, Ego and Archetype, Edward Edinger, Penguin Press, 1973
As Edinger says it, to reiterate, the widow and orphan, strangers all, others, relate one to God (the Self). This sets up more of Tillich's insight into the human experience of God and other. He says that there are two ways of approaching God and I'd like to extend this to include two ways of approaching the person, the other :
"The way of overcoming estrangement and the way of meeting a stranger. In the first way man discovers himself when he discovers God [and the other person], he discovers something that is identical with himself although it transcends him infinitely, something from which he is estranged, but from which he has never been and never can be separated. In the second way man meets a stranger when he meets God [or the other person]. The meeting is accidental. Essentially they do not belong to each other. They may become friends on a tentative and conjectural basis. But there is no certainty about the stranger man has met." pg. 10, The Theology of Culture, Paul Tillich, Oxford University Press, 1959.
1) Overcoming estrangement -- rediscovering of esse, essence which is another name for wholeness which etymologically means completeness, ripeness, maturity...telios, greek word for perfection also means 'purpose'...thus evolution, development is implied in the words wholeness, perfection, completeness...Rimbaud, then, cries out that in his forsakeness (alienation/estrangement) he will worship at any shrine impulses toward development/evolving maturity, ripeness. Worship then, too, is a procession.
2) Stranger - the way of meeting a stranger...the child has stranger anxiety, fear of the other...
The Other as Destiny. The Stranger as Destiny. Estrangement as Destiny and the quest to be known and embraced.
Alienation -- in the Western creation myth God and man become strangers and humans are exiled, estranged, alienated while bearing within them the Imago of God, a memory, an imprint, now a scar which is the memory of original wholeness and unity with God...the alienation self with Self, of self with self, of self with other, with self-as-Other...
Western religion is about encounter, the Word, Logos, dialogue from O.Fr. dialoge, from L. dialogus, from Gk. dialogos, related to dialogesthai "converse," from dia- "across" + legein "speak". Thus to dialogue is to speak across as well as the indicative cross speak, to cross words, to speak cross words as well as to speak in order to cross the divide which is now the appropriate time to read of Martin Buber's "the narrow ridge" (see quotes above).
Intentional dialogue is the primary technique of Imago Therapy as developed by Harville Hendrix and Helen LaKelly Hunt.
Intend - c. 1300, "direct one's attention to," from O.Fr. intendre "to direct one's attention," from L. intendere "turn one's attention, strain," lit. "stretch out, extend," from in- "toward" + tendere "to stretch". Sense of "have as a plan" (1390) was present in Latin. A Gmc. word for this was ettle, from O.N. ætla "to think, conjecture, propose," from P.Gmc. *ahta "consideration, attention" (cf. O.E. eaht, Ger. acht). Intended (n.) "one's intended husband or wife" is from 1767.
- Intense - c. 1400, from M.Fr. intense, from L. intensus "stretched, strained, tight," originally pp. of intendere "to stretch out, strain"; thus, literally, "high-strung." Intensity formed in Eng. 1665 (earlier was intenseness, 1614); sense of "extreme depth of feeling" first recorded 1830. Intensify (1817) was first used by Coleridge, in place of intend, which was no longer felt as connected with intense.
- Intent (adj.) - "very attentive," 1606, from L. intentus "attentive, eager, strained," pp. of intendere "to strain, stretch".
- Intent (n.) - "purpose," c.1225, from O.Fr. entente, from L.L. intentus "attention," from L. intentus (fem. intentia), pp. of intendere "stretch out, lean toward, strain," lit. "stretched out" (see intend). Intentionally "on purpose" is from 1661.
In the very phrase intentional dialogue is, rootly, tension, strain, being in tension, being strained, also, being restrained, restraining oneself (via the technique of mirroring, empathy, validation and accomodation via transformation).
To repeat, Dialogue - from O.Fr. dialoge, from L. dialogus, from Gk. dialogos, related to dialogesthai "converse," from dia- "across" + legein "speak" (see lecture).
Lecture - 1398, "action of reading, that which is read," from M.L. lectura "a reading, lecture," from L. lectus, pp. of legere "to read," originally "to gather, collect, pick out, choose" (cf. election), from PIE *leg- "to pick together, gather, collect" (cf. Gk. legein "to say, tell, speak, declare," originally, in Homer, "to pick out, select, collect, enumerate;" lexis "speech, diction;" logos "word, speech, thought, account;" L. lignum "wood, firewood," lit. “that which is gathered”). To read is to "pick out words." Meaning "action of reading (a lesson) aloud" is from 1526. That of "a discourse on a given subject before an audience for purposes of instruction" is from 1536. The verb is attested from 1590.
How often do people at odds lecture one another instead of converse, dialogue, or speak at cross purposes, speak crossly, speak across and over the other?
Etymology of the word Imago simply is image yet it's formal use conveys primary image or archetype or primary pattern akin to Plato's idea of the ideal forms. Jung speaks of mother imagos, father imagos and these indicate the mother and father archetypes.
Mike Eigen points out in The Psychoanalytic Mystic: "For Freud libido seeks an ideal imago [italics mine], in traditional terms, god."
So both Freud and Jung use imago to convey something more than just superficial visual image...whether Hendrix and Hunt intend to use the word imago the way Freud and Jung use it or not the etymological, therefore archetypal, root meaning of the word is present inherent within. Hendrix and Hunt do say that each member of a couple projects their inner personal parental imagos upon their partner and therefore expect them, consciously and unconsciously, to be like the parent for good and for ill and hope that the partner undoes and heals any wounding from original parents. No quarrel here. Jung would include that the archetypal Imagos are also evoked and projected upon the partner. Jung insists for individuation's sake that the individual projector become aware of these inner Imagos, the archetypal mother and father and others, develop a conscious relationship to those living internal realities, begin to withdraw their projections upon the partner and thus relieve the partner of the set up of the burden of expectations and failures that come from catching and perhaps nobly and willingly but ineffectively carrying archetypal projections. The partner is then free to be the utterly, always/already fallible human being in the room as opposed to "the Face that launched a thousand ships" or "the Great Mother" or "Great Father and King", the Prince, etc.
Plato speaks of the imago of the primal or original human, an archetypal image...from Edward F. Edinger's book, Ego and Archetype, Penguin Books, London, 1973 :
"In the Platonic myth of the whole human, the primal or original man, the anthropos, was round, in the shape of a mandala. In the Symposium Plato says, the primeval man was round, his back and sides forming a circle...due to childlike inflation the primal man offended the gods and was ripped literally in two and ever since humans have been seeking to be reunited." pg. 8
Thus this separation and longing (derived from the ripping in two) is the tension in the word intention which adds meaningful resonance to the phrase used in Imago therapy intentional dialogue. Out of oneness, separateness - and with separation comes consciousness, exile, and in exile the cultivation of consciousness driven by the longing for conscious return, reunion, the word conscious being most important for an unconscious return is regressive and addictive with no forward growth and evolution, no perfection which etymologically means complete, ripe, mature."
Imago - the root or archetypal image, call it Platonic form or ideal....
Imago is the source place/potential from which all images emerge which are referential to root energies/expressions/encounters which appear to us as literal images...image here, as opposed to imago, is referential to, partakes of, the root, archetypal Ground Dynamic but is not the entire Thing Itself (the Ground, the archetype)...for our and Hendrix's purposes the Imago is an archetype, an endless source or wellspring (to use some images here) from out of which the objects of our libido, and the images of them, have their appearance, appeal and attraction...refer again to the Platonic myth of the original round human in the shape of a mandala (a mandala is always a wholeness image)...
Edinger - "Dreams often attempt to heal the alienated ego by conveying to it some sense of origin." Ego and Archetype, pg. 117. Thus the dream of relationship of all kinds, the dream of/drive for return, for reunion, coniunctio, to a distant yet powerful meaning of origin and original unity to being itself, to esse, which includes "god reality", original face, oneness with the maternal unconscious, mother and child as one, father and child, mother and father and child as one...
Two people coming together create or evoke or discover and nurture a space which can hopefully hold the tension between space and time, being and existence, for to exist is to be in space and time which therefore means to be evidently divided, composed of opposites and pulled and pushed accordingly...and yet, Imago, the archetype of vast, flexible, enduring, containing space for relatedness is awakened which does not balk at or reject opposites as strangers (see Tillich notes above) but as unique expression of esse, of Being, as manifest expressions in space and time...Imago does not reject strangeness...
I'm trying to relate addiction as speech to intentional dialogue...and I do so, or try, poetically/mythopoetically as rooted in Primal Ground, Archetypal Space. I use psyche-logic (psyche means soul and the language of psyche/soul is image-inal, Imagos and images).
Images are inductions into open-ended experiences framed upon verbal, visual, emotional, kinesthetic and intuitive/aesthetic images/impressions evoking expressions...
Eigen in Psychoanalytic Mystic speaks of I-Thou and I-It mystical moments as turbulent:
"All real living is meeting." The self that enters an I-Thou relation is not the same as in an I-It relation. Oceanic fusion, absorption, or oneness would not do justice to the drama of self-other meeting and intersection that Buber points to. For one thing, the mystical moment may involve enormous upheaval, turbulence, overthrowing and reworking of self. A new meeting can change one's picture [image] of what self and other can be."
Jung speaks of the I and the Not-I...a way of speaking of I-Thou and I-It relations...his Not-I is not just the human and material other but that Self, that Encompassing Greater Reality Beyond Comprehension Yet Is Apprehended...
Addiction- The More Insistant Voice, The Shout, The Scream to know and to be known, to perceive and to be perceived. "To be is to be perceived," says a pragmatist philosopher...and yet to be perceived can also be annihilating, fragmenting, destroying. The archetypal "eye of God," both aspects of it, the all-seeing and all-loving, compassionate eye, the Jesus-eye, the Bodhisatva-eye; and the seering, severe, burning, dissecting, judging eye...we are ambivalent toward being perceived, long for it as much as fear and shun and hide from it...contrary selves and oppositions, awareness of shadow and embrace of shadow...what kind of embrace? that of, say, Buddha wrestling for seven years beneath the Bodhi tree; that of Jesus overturning merchant tables in the synagogue or sweating drops of blood in Gethsemani, etc....one's animal self, instinctual self, too, is to be encountered on the narrow ridge, all held there in the durable, expansive, apparently boundless space which does not reject any part of itself, of existence, of even the other's existence as forbidden from the narrow ridge. Shadow, sin, brokeness is incorporated, tolerated, possibly even celebrated though super-egoic calibrations' turn toward ethics and morality regarding self and other. Eigen speaks of William Blake's notion of heaven "as all out war between every human capacity in which all have their say without compromise, yet incessantly enrich and are enriched by others. Here faith functions as a boundless or infinite container." pg. 124-125 PA/Mystic.
Here we have two contradictory images -- the narrow ridge (I also love Eigen's "electrified tightrope" image as the narrow ridge) verses the boundless, infinite container. There is a tension here between the two images...another Eigen quote helps here:
"For Bion, faith creates the attitude that makes conflict between psychic dimensions more fruitful. In both Winnicott and Bion the structure of mystery exhibits a tension-in-unity which is dynamic...a necessary part of mystery and life." ibid. pg. 126. It strikes me that good relationship incorporates, tolerates, allows and insists upon this dynamic and necessary "tension-in-unity."
The longing to be perceived along with the terror of it...capacity to tolerate the stranger within and the stranger without...Intentional dialogue = ways to tolerate edges, as well. After all, a narrow ridge is an edge...In a poem Theodore Roethke speaks of edges and of growing darkness, edges and darkening have a relation...he says, "The night is what I have, a dear proximity." I translate or twist it here to, "The edge is what I have, a dear proximity." The stranger and the estranged is darkness, is an edge...gestalt psychology, Diane Shainberg, too, would call it, in potentia, the growing edge. The other, the partner, the dialogic other we are in tension with is what we have, and in potentia (poet-encia), a dear proximity, a dear closeness though it is other, Thou and It..."Thing that have hands take hands," also says Roethke.
A-Dear-Proximity in the context of addicere/addiction's "say, it's declaration", the Word, the Logos with it's Gnosis and Devotio is deeply religious -- Repeating Eigen repeating Freud, it is Libido's insistent drive toward "an ideal imago", in a word, God", or that which the God word, name or experience implies.
Ye littles, lie close. Make me, O Lord, a last, a simple thing Time cannot overwhelm. Once I knew time, a bud broke to a rose and I rose from a last diminishing. -- from "In Evening Air"
Poetic preponderance May 25 --
"Estoy muy solitario...(I am very lonely)," says Victor, a young man from Mexico whom I met on a bus ride. He was newly in the US, without family or friends here, only a cousin in Boston, to seek work to earn enough money for his young sister's sinus surgery in Chiapas. A few weeks after we met, alone, not much money left to live on and with no job prospects he called me from Boston after midnight crying and afraid. We spoke where we had first met, upon "the narrow ridge". I hung up at the end of the call heart-broken for we had met broken heart to broken heart.
The story of how we met illustrates Tillich's two ways of meeting God, and as I apply it, of two ways of meeting a person, first as estrangement and then as a way of overcoming estrangement. It also illustrates how Victor and I met as Its and became Thous in the course of the 7 hour bus ride from New York City to Boston. I'll excerpt from an email to a friend about the encounter:
A few days ago I had an amazing encounter on the bus trip up from New York to Boston with a 20 years old Mexican immigrant kid literally just out from under the belly of the beast, an Mac-truck, in which he had been crammed and cramped with 3 other compadres crossing the border into the US for 6 days, hot from the engine, unable to get out to walk, piss, shoit...when I first sat beside him on the bus he looked absolutely frightened and trembled...I eventually spoke to him, he spoke no English, and he eventually began to tell me of his journey in the truck's bowels, of his little pueblo in the high hills of (with only one phone for the whole village), one of the poorest and politically radical states of Mexico, his younger sister's need for a serious operation on her nose and sinuses costing $80,000 pesos ($8000 US dollar), which is why he took this hero's journey (my words for it) to the US with no English at all, very little $$, and a cousin in Boston hopefully waiting for him at the station.
I had a few Virgin of Guadalupe images I received from Bety in Oaxaca (a curandera/healing woman with whom I apprentice), told him I studied and practiced curandismo ala Bety and when I gave him a Guadelupe image, pointed to a red tailed hawk and a zopelote (turkey vulture in Nahuatl language) in the sky out our window, and told him the this was auspicious for him he crossed himself, kissed his lips, took my hand and cried. It was then I noticed that he had pissed himself while we were talking and had discreetly covered his lap with a plastic bag with some food and water in it. I didn't say anything to him about it but at some point I excused myself verbally from him indicating that I was going to the restroom at the back of the bus...either he didn't know it was there or he was afraid to venture forth from his seat due to no English language skills and fear of being discovered as an illegal alien. I brought him back some towelettes for washing, some paper towels, and told him the restroom had a lock on the door. Still, he did not venture to the restroom.
As we rode on and chatted he opened up some more and we talked about Mexico, my trips there and my eventual hopeful retirement to there, of his family, his new adventure in America and his hope to make the money for his sister's operation quickly so he could quickly return to his novia/fiance, Sandra, and his widowed mother and 2 sisters (his older and only brother was killed ten years ago in a construction accident when something fell and crushed his skull). I gave him my contact info if he wanted to keep in contact with me from Boston or when he returned to Chiapas.
He had visibly relaxed during our ongoing conversation but when we got to the bus station in Boston the cousin wasn't there and he looked frightened...I had an hour to wait there for the Portland bus so asked him if he had a phone number or an address of the cousin. "No." I was a bit shocked that he had just showed up at the station without any contact information. It was only later that I realized that this was for his cousin's safety and anonymity if the kid got arrested by the cops...there would be no trace to the cousin.
We strode toward the food area, Victor looking frightened and literally holding onto my arm...then his face lit up, he let go my arm and slowly walked toward a man in his 40's, his cousin, Aurelio. Both of us relieved, I shook his cousin's hand, then Valentin's, told him to call me when he got the chance and let me know how he is, etc. He gave me a warm embrace and told me that Dios has sent me to give him hope. I teared up a bit...just some simple kindness and contact was God. I went off to my McNugget's and bad coffee (my Boston bus station ritual). Victor and Aurelio walked past me not noticing me. I heard Valentin saying, "No. No, carnal ("blood brother" in Mexican Spanish). He speaks Spanish pretty good and is a curandero in New York," the older cousin looking concerned/dubious, wary, I'm sure, of gringo strangers, the immigration police...
This kid and his story sticks with me, of one who rides beneath a truck belly risking arrest and death, the journey undertaken to save his little sister...and perhaps a young man's daimon calling him into the underworld of border-crossings, that Hermes' realm of tricksters, thieves and guides, into the US for the hero's individuation journey...this kid, and the very many others coming here, is no It but a Thou. He is, indeed, an "esse", Mexican Spanish for "brother" which also means "to be", "being" in Latin, where the word essense is derived." END of email.
One's solitary journey alone as a stranger in and with the world-as-stranger, as other.
Is it, the world, a Thou for real?
"Every Thou is terrible!" to borrow and alter an expression of Rilke's from Duino Elegies (He writes, "Every Angel is terrible!")
To stand in and for Existenz as an appeal and as Existenz, too, one who is Existenz and who, too, is an appeal to the Thou of the universe, or universe-as-Thou, to be met...
There is an Emptiness, a kenosis (greek for emptying), and there is an infilling experienced either as being filled from without (by It or Thou) or from a Source (It/Thou) within -- or an awakening to Fullness-as-presense...Victor and I met in this way in his suffering and his primal faith that he could make it in the US.
One stands on the narrow ridge, lives there empty or full, as appeal, as response to appeal in an encounter or in the possibility of encounter. Samuel Beckett's Godot depicts this, it's setting is the narrow ridge and the action of the play, the characters, are appeal and response or attempts to respond in what the existentialists call "good faith".
Bion and Eigen write much of this continual dialectic of shattering and recollection where wholeness is a dynamic, non static state.
The existentialists speak of an appeal in existence for response, this call, this word, this speech, this guttural moan/utterance strains, stretches toward us creatures of response (and of appeal) which constitutes an encounter which re-constitutes some essential/existential sense in which the Universe knows itself through us essentially...thus our response, even a scream, is or lends or gives or hints at meaning.
Notations/half thoughts for future study:
Image as structure-structuring.
The constituting nature of the face.
Mirroring = Face to face
With Imago/intentional dialogue in mind reread/study the Eros and Psyche myth;
Reread Marie Louise von Franz's The Golden Ass and her book on Projection and Recollection for this is very much a part of the work on the narrow ridge (more on this below).
Face evokes primary structures within the human organism--instinctual, biological, archetypal, biochemical-- processes which evoke/provoke creative constituting forces.
Call and response.
The Expression which impacts, imparts, surges, caresses, fragments, parses, disintegrates...
"We arise as individuals, but we become as persons." -- from Martin Buber: The Life of Dialogue by Maurice S. Friedman (online book: http://www.religion-online.org/showchapter.asp?title=459&C=371)
The internet/cyberspace as "the pool of Narcissus"...
Perpetual estrangement...or more of that sense of self as an it, an other, than as a Thou...
One must also know one's "Other", one's shadow, positive and negative....
The containing Gaze, the Face, and what Henri Corbin calls "the Angel of the Face", the unique mediated Face of Esse (Being). In Mexico men refer affectionately to one another as "esse" which there means brother...the word, esse/being used to convey brother, thou...not other/it.
Regarding scapegoating and how to deal with it:
First of all know that it is a phenomena of projection. All projections must be reclaimed, recollected, then integrated...
Scapegoat as shadow catcher/carrier. A la Buber scapegoat is reduced to an It.
Basic (and base) Projection 101...von Franz says :
1) Projection is a preconscious, involuntary process, independent of consciousness...it is to be expected that the process itself will be depicted in products of the unconscious such as dreams, waking fantasies, and mythological traditions.
2) Whenever projection takes plae, there is first of all [and always] a "sender" and "a receiver".
For the Dreamwork Toolkit: One of the oldest ways of symbolizing projections is by means of projectiles, especially the magic arrow or shot that harms other people. When you encounter a dream with projectiles, guns, bullets, arrows, knives, stones, etc. think "projections".
Simple (but almost impossibly difficult to do) formula for working with scapegoating:
Name it ---> Claim it ---> Integrate/tame it
The AIM of scapegoating (projecting) is blame and shame and mame:
AIM ---> BLAME/SHAME/MAME.
As well as to redeem and cleanse the scapegoater(s):
Also part of the AIM ---> CLEANSE/REDEEM
To tame implies bringing into consciousness, making someone/something more conscious/aware.
One's own ongoing inner work is essential for tolerating the archetypal energies which get constellated in doing shadow/scapegoat work. It is essential to do this work yourself in order to assist others/addicts-as-scapegoats to tolerate the work.
WHAT FOLLOWS IS FROM LFLG NEWSLETTER AND FROM BLOGSPOT ESSAY. Click the following if you want to read both or either:
...If one understands that it is archetypal libido that the scapegoat constellates (activates) and carries for others (unbidden carrying, mind you) then the scapegoat is darkly numinous because of that archetypal energy and projection. Consciously carrying it liberates, or can, the scapegoat while scapegoaters libel-ate, castigate (as in "casting stones"), pontificate and destroy/banish the goats. The scapegoat has power, great power archetypally, which is what evokes the scapegoating complex and dynamic. George Elder, Jungian analyst and author, told me this week that the goat is banished instead of killed in some of the rituals because there is an unconscious awareness that the energy the goat carries is sacred (archetypal) which cannot just vanish and is in fact "secretly" worshipped via compulsions which need ultimately to be brought consciously to the analytical/psychological table (another kind of altar)...As I write this an African Catholic bishop is talking about the ritual of the Devotion to Sacred Blood of Jesus, the Scapegoat Extraordinaire, whose blood is or can be a transforming "food" for the partaker and the god...you are fortunate to have such a wise priest who knows his Jung which is very surprising. Jung knew and experienced much scapegoating and does still posthumously. I'm proud and humble to be in his company...
...It's a two-way street re: scapegoating and the projections and counter-projections that fly fast and furious and oh so righteously but I believe the wise teacher and scapegoat Jesus of Nazareth cuts through all this when he counsels "to remove the log from your own eye before you seek to point out the splinter in the other's eye." Hard psychoanalytical work, that! Look to one's own shadow and embrace it, have a more conscious relationship to it and the projections of others (theoretically--I'm still a babe in the woods here) may then be meaningfully bourn. In so doing one may eventually mourn and bemoan less the loss of face and place as a hostilely encircled or banished-as-evil Loner for one is undergoing an intense process of individuation as Edward Edinger indicates so clearly and movingly in his profound book, Ego and Archetype, The Religious Function of the Psyche:
"The word individual is etymologically related to the word widow. According to Skeat, widow (Latin, vidua) derives from a lost cognate verb videre, meaning to part. Jung has demonstrated that the images of widow and orphan are part of the individuation process...Widow means the parted one. Hence, prior to widowhood one is not yet an individual, indivisible [which is what the word individual means, in = not, and dividere= to divide, thus not divided], but is still subject to the parting process. The symbolism tells us that widowhood is an experience on the pathway to the realization of individuality, in fact, that individuality is the son of that experience. This can only mean that man must be parted from that on which he is dependent but which he is not, before he can become aware of that which he is, unique and individual. A dependent projection must be broken. Similar implications apply to the image of the orphan which was a synonym for the alchemists' philosophers' stone. To be orphaned denotes the loss of parental support and the breaking of parental projections; it is likewise a prerequisite of the conscious experience of individuality. As Augustine puts it, to be a widow or orphan relates one to God (the Self)." pgs. 162-163
And to be a scapegoat also relates one to God (the Self).
These are powerful words in which I take great comfort...the meaning of an experience of scapegoating can be seen as an archetypal event which calls one to individuation as psychological scapegoat, orphan, widow, carriers of unintegrated 'gold' of the Self, that greater Center in each person. Dependent projections must be broken and are often shattering, thus the experience of abjection and desolation, of wandering disoriented in the wilderness as one undergoes a reorientation toward the Self and one's dependency upon It and nothing/no one else.
Scapegoating is a psychologically primitive yet effective orienting device where the scapegoater continually needs to scapegoat and sacrifice it. This unconsciously reorients him/her to the inner Center/Self which gets projected upon some other individual, group, community, nation. Personal and collective shadow gets constellated (activated) and projected upon the scapegoat who carries that shadow. Just to repeat, this projection by the scapegoater reorients him/her albeit unconsciously toward the Self which is projected outwardly upon an individual, group, collective, and the doctrines and mores of local god and tribe. Recognition and reclaiming of the projections (the "removing the log" work of Jesus) is the work, the life long work, most important and essential work, in the process of individuation.
Thus Jesus's words about removing the log from one's own eye cuts through the dependent projections when one enters the wilderness of introspection, Jungian analysis, other inner work and there confronts the shadow and the Self within. This makes one a (depth) psychological orphan, a widow, a scapegoat who is much needed collectively for they not only preserve the greater order of humans with the sacred (archetypal) but evolve collective human consciousness further, individual by individual.
It's a dirty job, baby, but somebody's gotta do it! Usually one doesn't know what one is signing up for when naively entering the Scapegoats-R-Us store which has many guises, a family, church, religious/spiritual growth group, seminary, government organization, a job and on and on in search of a cute stuffed lamb or goat. However, one is usually compelled in by Libido-as-Fate (the Daimon is that!) which drives the individuation process usually followed blindly until one has one's Damascus experience like St. Paul and is blinded by the Light of the Self as Transforming Fire, the Sol Niger/Black Sun which renders insight where one begins to ongoingly undergo meaningful suffering of psychological orphanhood, widowhood, goathood for the sake of individuation which is increased from these scapegoating experiences, or can be--not a formula here but an archetypal pattern of hope and possibility. Undergo, by the way, is what the word suffer means etymologically, i.e. sub= below, under, and ferrre= carry, go, )... Just read the myths, the experiences, say, of Siddhartha Gautama, of Jesus Christ, so many, so many, and so many unknown ones who have done the hard inner work of recognizing and withdrawing and chewing on the projections..