This is a meandering from an article I’m hoping to write, called INFJs and Creativity (which will be on the nature of our inferior function, Extraverted Sensing (Se).
I read Dr. A. J. Drenth’s article INFJ Personality Type: Lover of Beauty & Wisdom again last night, and got a lot more out of it this time ’round. Who knew that reading what little I have on Jung’s work would be of such practical use in modern (mainstream) psychology, too? It is certainly not what I had expected, after some of the insider squabbles I have seen. But it is giving me a lot more hope in the modern world, and allowing me to balance my opinions.
Everyone is different. This is one thing I love about Jung’s and “Myers & Briggs’s” work on Typology; though not perfect (as Jung himself said, “Anyone who wants to know the human psyche…. would be better advised to abandon exact science, put away [their] scholar’s gown, bid farewell to [their] study, and wander with human heart through the world. There…. [they will] reap richer stores of knowledge than text-books a foot thick could give [them], and [they] will know how to doctor the sick with a real knowledge of the human soul.”1), it has really helped me to understand just how different people can be, not only in who we are (by our life’s experiences), but by the very ways in which we think and perceive the world (and by them, interestingly enough, often fall into the same conclusions or opinion traps).
But, I suppose, what is philosophy aside from our own beliefs, known only through our entirely unique experience of life? Through our own perceptions we see the world; it only exists in our mind, as people who have suffered brain injury or modification well know. It is what makes Gut and Psychology Syndrome2 (as well as the physical health and development of the body) so interesting to me as—the mind being merely a product of the body—both are inexorably linked. You cannot hope to know one through ignorance of the other; both must be taken into account (and, indeed, all things—for who are we to say where one thing begins and the other ends? Without knowing the answers, we cannot restrict ourselves in our search for truth).
I am coming to believe of late, that, despite the clear logical value of our numerical system, archaic peoples3 weren’t too far off in their use of three as their highest number. For, if you think about it, no two things are exactly the same. Everything is an individual, wholly unique in this entire world. Like snow flakes, things might be similar, classifiable into the same species or genus (which is of great value), but a balance needs to be found between the perspective of the replicating, classifiable pattern, and the individual. Everyone is unique. Every thing is unique. And no two works (though genres can be useful) are exactly the same.
This is the growing marvel of Jung’s work. It is an oxymoron to call oneself under the title of Jungian if one is familiar with his work. I take his knowledge into account, but there is only one me in this entire world. I am not a Jungian; I am “The Dreaming Sentinel”. I value his work, and have added what I may—like shiny baubles—to my veritable “bluebird’s” nest of knowledge. But that nest is wholly unique; mine, and mine alone.
This is not to say that this applies to everything. Nothing is absolute, and I would be a fool if I didn’t question and continuously review my own beliefs. I have been working through my own complexes lately, and found that my recent tendency towards extremism stems from a rebound or adverse reaction to something equally extreme. And thus, I respond extremely in the hopes of waking other extremists up (which, ironically, is most likely what many of them are also doing).
But this is not the way. I’m still struggling to acquaint my recently acquired world view (of disillusionment) with what I once believed, and what many humans are still fighting for. I do not want to be so extreme in that my current society is wrong, for this is not so. Mass leadership and technology both have brought many benefits which can be used positively, and in magnificent ways. The great tragedy is, however, that this is not what is currently being done.
There is a great rage in me. I see it through my characters—would have to be in denial not to. But I suppose I have been in denial for a long time, or otherwise repressing it with conscious logic (for such things never end well). But it is not who I am.
I thought for a long time that I was merely being a pawn of my current government, or bad nutrition (GAPS), to believe and behave the way I did—with such fury. And this could still be true—only time may tell. However, such things cannot be repressed. They must be lived, embraced, and known for their lessons to be learned, and their influence to find balance with the rest of the whole that is the Self. And, unfortunately, this is a lesson I have had to learn in a hard, and somewhat dangerous, manner.
This is my path of individuation. I hope you enjoyed the philosophical treatise, and that it perhaps offered some food for thought.
The Dreaming Sentinel
1“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 through the world. There in the horrors of prisons, lunatic asylums and hospitals, in drab suburban pubs, in brothels and gambling-halls, 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.” C. G. Jung, Collected Works: The Psychology of the Unconscious and The Relations Between the Ego and the Unconscious.
2Gut and Psychology Syndrome by Dr. Natasha Campbell McBride.
3Debt: The First 5000 Years by David Graeber.