“Raising up walls of possessions, captive planetmates, and conforming underlings — including women and children —and retreating from the more magnificent and magical expanses of self, you sought to make a stand against real life”
Planetmates reveal the family fortress, conforming underlings, Commandments of society’s elite, the “family jewels,” more:
“…Humans would rather have the “Joneses” be impressed with the amount and quality of their possessions … than to actually be happy.
“Look again at that work you created in the care and feeding of kept planetmates—husbandry: The work has to be done, they need to be fed, or you lose your investment. If you were sick, tired, or simply disinclined, it did not matter and you had to forego an ease and pleasure in your body as you bullied it into submission, just as you do the Earth. You needed to make your body move and work, regardless of how you felt or how you suffered or how much ill health would be incumbent upon such stresses and strains and unhappiness in your physical selves.
“Similarly, at certain times of the year, such as harvest, you worked under extreme pressure. The demands of completing the harvest and storing what was wrought before weather might come in and, again, neutralize all the results of one’s efforts made for very long days of back-breaking work. In these ways, in addition to all the others we have mentioned, you split off from Nature, for your body is Nature, and you operated it in spite of and often in opposition to its cries and screams, its promptings and messages to you. Is it any wonder then that you lost your ability to feel the fainter urges of the “instinct” within your body?
“At any rate, it is supremely ironic how your insistence on taking over the reins of your sustenance through horticulture and farming, which was pushed by your desire to not be dependent on Nature and to be free, made you shackled to work loads and time constraints, and found you burdened under a multitude of demands and responsibilities and pressures. Good job getting that freedom you wanted!
“All in all, then, while the phenomenal dependency of your offspring was an added burden in your lives, in general, that effort, under certain kinds of conditions, these sedentary-accumulating ones, children could be seen as additional assistance in your tussle with your imagined threats and brought in to share with you all that additional suffering you created in Nature through trying to control everything..
“This was especially true if that dependent state, especially in infancy but in childhood as well, was used to mold these children into the ideal conforming underlings for you.
“And so you did to your children what you had done to the Earth and to your own bodies: You brutalized them into submission.
“Those who were Large Accumulators could “bribe” additional efforts from others to aid them in their dramas, of course, but even those with lesser means — virtually all of you — had the ability to gain obedient subordinates through procreation. Large families were thus selected for. The larger the family, the better, as long as each subsequent child could within a sufficiently short period come to add more resources to the collective family struggle than would be removed from the total by the (minimal) survival of that child.
“Thus, large accumulation was increasingly linked with large families. A brood of offspring could act like a small gang, or crew of employees in the gathering, processing, and accumulating of extra, hoarded resources, but they could also serve as a small army and aid in the defense and protection of such hoarded wealth against other accumulators with green eyes and needy, famished hearts. Raising humans to assist with accumulation began to be seen as a survival advantage, but also, children, after the agrarian revolution, were increasingly seen as another category of conforming underlings — the least costly and most manipulatable ones of all — who would be even greater allies in the fight against the ever expanding threats to your survival.
“This was so much your view of the way of things that your Ten Commandments — a rather good abstract of your fearful imaginings and your feverish, heavy-handed control — contains not only such reinforcement for the strong men of the society as “have no god before Him,” not only such protections for your authoritarian families as “honoring father and mother” and codification of the elements of resource management to benefit the ones who already have as “shalt not steal” and “shalt not bear false witness,” but even includes two entire commandments to cover jealousy. It is called “coveting” and has to do not only with protecting the hoarded wealth — “shalt not covet neighbor’s goods” — but defending the engines of that production as well — “shalt not covet neighbor’s wife.” So, it is understandable how all threats to the fantastical survival competition are fought in all such manners: Monogamy would be elevated to a divine status — “shalt not commit adultery” — as part of the accumulation ordeal.
“Further, it is no coincidence that your male reproductive capacity is referred to as “family jewels.” While humorous, it is starkly accurate in the way you humans think on a level of your unconscious mind inaccessible to you — again, that Unapproved and Hidden: A human’s reproductive capacity began to be seen as an avenue of potential wealth, insurance against want or insufficiency, and even a ticket to possible Controller status and inclusion in society’s elite.
“For children began increasingly to be thought of as mere extensions of you, of your Ego. And the family unit that came of such expansion of fear and self-congratulation (Ego) was no longer harmonious with Nature; it had ceased being, even, interconnected with the tribe. It was not about individuals in relation to community. No. This nuclear family represented another advance in mistrust and fear, a further retreat into an ever diminishing circle, a fortress. With the creation of the family citadel, it was you against the world.
“Altogether, with conforming underlings bought, bribed, or paid for to be allies in your war over resources, with children conceived and raised to be obedient soldiers in its battles, and with tenets and social codes enforced with extreme severity so as to wrangle extreme conformity to social ways benefiting the Large Accumulators and the petty tyrants heading families, you had created a full on assault against your imaginary fears of death, your strange abhorrence of more adventurous, uncontrolled life, which you felt as uncertainty and pain — which we see as guides in our living, but which you perceive as reminders of that death you fear so intensely.
“All in all, this added up to a wrong-gettedness in relation to life. Whereas we are ever reminded of our divine surround through the challenges, obstacles, and discomfort of life and are directed in this way in an ever-expanding, numinous path of divine return, you erected walls of fear-rooted control around your fleeting havens of ease, and you cut off your roots into the divine, unshakeable peace to which you are entitled. Raising up walls of possessions, captive planetmates, and conforming underlings — including women and children — and retreating from the more magnificent and magical expanses of self, you sought to make a stand against real life. A big part of this effort you called “family,” and you erected a shrine to it equal to your exaggerated terror of the uncontrolled….”
[Pt 6 of 25rd prasad — Family Fortress. More coming….
To see the entire book, to which this will be added eventually (book is two-thirds updated), go to the blog page at http://mladzema.wordpress.com/the-great-reveal-book-6/ …
To purchase any of Michael Adzema’s books, available in print and e-book formats, go to Michael Adzema’s books at Amazon.
Posted in Anthropology, authenticity, being yourself, Birth, Child Abuse, Consciousness, Environmentalism, Evolution, God, individualism, life, meaning, Metaphysics, Mystical, nonconform, Philosophy, Politics, Primal Spirit, Primal Spirituality, Psychology, Religion, Spirituality
Tags: accumulating, adultery, body, burden, challenges, childhood, children, citadel, Commandments, Conforming Underling, control, Controller, covet, death, Divine, earth, Ego, elite, family, family jewels, farming, fortress, freedom, happiness, instinct, Large Accumulators, monogamy, Nature, nuclear family, obedience, planetmates, pleasure, possessions, resources, sedentary, strong men, struggle, submission, suffering, survival, tribe, UNAPPROVED AND HIDDEN, unconscious, uncontrolled, wealth, women, work, wrong-gettedness
Class War, 20,000 BC: In the 17th Prasad, Planetmates Report Big Accumulators Created Scarcity, Needlessly, and Oppressed Small Accumulators to Convert Them to Being Conforming Underlings
Class War Divided People, Creating Culture War: Three Groups Emerged—Controllers (Big Accumulators), Conforming Underlings (Small Accumulators, Wannabe Controllers), and Authentic Humans (Small Accumulators by Choice, Keepers of the Old Ways)
The Great Reveal from the Planetmates, the Seventeenth Prasad: Nascent Class War … 20,000 BC
Planetmates Release The Seventeenth Prasad
Controlling and conforming traits won out, in the struggle for survival, over natural, authentic traits. For Big Accumulators and their conforming allies could combine their power to harness even more excessive resources. Driven by unreal fears of uncertainty and death from deprivation, they went even further to garner power and resources through gobbling up all they could and leaving others in states of severe neglect. Then surrounded by people in severe deprivation, they could call any tune they wished, for those in deprivation would be more amenable to themselves becoming conforming underlings and serving the Big Accumulators ends, thus further increasing their power and excessive accumulation.
saw no end to their desire to drive others into states of deprivation that would make them more amenable to control and to...serving the ends...of their high accumulating overlords."
The Seventeenth Prasad — Nascent Culture War, 20,000 B.C.
Making matters worse, both conforming behavior and controlling behavior had survival advantages over more natural and authentic behaviors. Not only did Big Accumulators and their conforming underlings have the benefit of access to more of the resources of physical survival, but Big Accumulators, out of that same uncertainty and fear rooted in early birth trauma, would be pushed to deprive others in their sphere of influence of these survival resources.
Big Accumulators would do this because their crazed brains saw no end to their fear of deprivation, got no relief from their blown up fear of uncertainty, hardship, pain, and struggle, and so saw no end to their desire to drive others into states of deprivation that would make them more amenable to control and to also becoming conforming underlings, doing their bidding and serving the ends, not of themselves, but of their high accumulating overlords.
Video Commentary by SillyMickel Adzema
This video is a reading of The Seventeenth Prasad, as received from The Planetmates—what I’m calling “Nascent Culture War, 20,000 B.C.”—with additional explanation, context, and some commentary by SillyMickel Adzema.
The issues highlighted in the commentary concern the way the sedentary lifeway and the possibility of storing and owning more
than one needed led not only to a division among humans into Big Accumulators and Small Accumulators, but also into Controllers, Conformers, and Non-Conformers. The natural alliance between Controllers, i.e., the Big Accumulators, and their conforming sycophantic underlings gave them survival advantages over natural, authentic Non-Conformers. How human’s birth pain and its increased anxiety led to the Controller-Conformer alliance to seek to swallow up or eliminate all Non-Conformers is explained, along with the consequences this has had ever since for societies and the divisions between them and within them.
The Seventeenth Prasad from The Great Reveal by The Planetmates – the audiocast
The link above takes you to the audio-only version of my commentary on The Seventeenth Prasad, exactly as is in the video. Click on the link to go to the the audio site, or you can listen to it here using the audio player below.
Paraphrase/ Elaboration of The Seventeenth Prasad: Nascent Culture War, 20,000 B.C.” — by SillyMickel Adzema
What followed is that there was pressure on Small Accumulators in a number of ways. Remember, Small Accumulators were what you originally were and describes the state in which your kind were happy. So, Small Accumulators were embodiments of the “old ways” … the natural ways. They were “more conservative” in seeking to choose richness of life experience over possession of things. But their numbers became fewer and the old ways increasingly sank into oblivion for these reasons:
The major way Small Accumulators began to disappear is through their accommodation to the power of the Big Accumulators: They covered up their desire for a more authentic and richer life. Small Accumulators by choice became fewer in number as many sought to be Big Accumulators.
But, Small Accumulators we have always with us. That is true. So, outside of those choosing to be Small Accumulators, in awareness of the broader life experience it makes possible, there were and will be always those who, for reasons of fate, Divine intention, inordinate fearfulness, and/or inability to be or “bad luck” in becoming Big Accumulators would be small accumulating not out of choice. These Small Accumulators — who would if they could be Big Accumulators — would be easily swayed to conform to the wishes of the Big Accumulators.
Why is that so? Why would those wishing to themselves dominate and control end up becoming submissive and allowing themselves to be dominated? It sounds contradictory. But, quite simply, in allying with the Big Accumulators, such wannabes of accumulation could maintain the hope — most often illusory — that they could become the same. Like dog planetmates who at times have gathered around the tables of humans, hoping for scraps, such Small-Accumulators-by-fate would be attracted to Large Accumulators. Indeed, a pseudo-religious quality came to be attached to Large Accumulators, by them. It was thought Big Accumulators — in particular, the “strong man” most in control among them — had a sort of power or energy that they contained to a great degree — far more than ordinary humans — which it was possible to feel when in proximity with them. It was even thought that it could “rub off” on others. So this purported power was, essentially then, a symbolic rationalization of this idea of thinking that one could become a Big Accumulator — sooner or later, one way or the other — through proximity to and alliance with Big Accumulators.
That is why such Small Accumulators would submit to the wishes of Big Accumulators. They would become the best and most loyal allies to the ones who had more. In deferring to them … repressing their own individuality in order to do that … they would maintain their hope of satisfying their own greed at some point. This is what is meant by their becoming conformers. They would alter their behavior in a way to be pleasing to their overlords, and they held little value in having their outer behavior match their inner experience. They would be liars to themselves and the world, narrowing the purview of their life from the richness of experience that is possible to a focus on physical survival alone. Again, early deprivation created excessive fear of being wanting in life, leading to extreme measures. And these included loss of self. These Conformers would become solid, albeit often sycophantic, allies with the Big Accumulators or Controllers.
So there were, and are still among humans, these three styles of being human: Big Accumulators or Controllers; Small Accumulators by choice, keepers of the Old Ways, who might be called Authentic Humans; and these would-be Big Accumulators, these loyal sycophants to the folks who had more, who might be called Conforming Underlings. Notice that the desires and designs of these three groups are split along a particular line. Controllers and Conformers are allied in their aims, and those aims are directly opposed to those of Authentics. So, though Big Accumulators were far smaller in numbers to Small Accumulators, their alliance with Conforming Underlings gave them power far beyond their small numbers. This Controller-Conformer alliance would, nearly everywhere, come to dominate in the struggle for resources over those Small Accumulators who sought to hang onto more natural and authentic behaviors and lives.
This is how they accomplished that: Naturally this alliance would mean their numbers would be greater. But the power that came with control of great resources allowed them also higher degrees of organization. For humans could be organized along lines not to their choosing, rather in accordance with the designs of those at the top through the power of gifts and rewards from the Big Accumulators. You would these days say that rich folks can pay others to do their bidding and work toward their ends and not the ends that people would choose if not coerced and bribed that way. So coercion through distribution of resources by the few allowed greater organization of activities along the lines beneficial to the elite.
But the Controller—Conformer alliance would be even more successful because they would go further than that. Not only could they organize the activities of large numbers of people to benefit the Controllers in the acquisition of greater amounts and storage of resources, thus increasing their power and ability to do that all the more, in vicious cycles of greed and power. Not only would this in itself allow them to rise in dominance over the more natural, individualistic Small Accumulator — the Authentics. But their raging fears of want and deprivation had no bounds; they expanded their control over other humans way beyond what was involved in simply winning out in the resource contest. Their crazed and fearful brains pushed them to seek god-like, total control.
Backing up, remember that the Big Accumulators (the Controllers) shared something with the Conformers — an excessive fear, again from that early birth trauma, of lack of resources and its ultimate consequence, death. The Authentics risked more, in pursuing the ends of the soul, so they either had less fear, for whatever reason, or their desire for a richer experience of life was greater and caused them to take on the burden of that fear.
But the Controllers and Conformers — fearing death, deprivation, and uncertainty to an extreme degree — would feel that nothing less than the control of all resources and the conformity of all other humans to their will and ends was required. With excessive fear, or diminished appreciation of life in itself, or both, they felt that the only way to find relief from their overpowering anxiety about existence came in attempts to control everything, to control all variables of existence, especially the ones related to accumulation, and all the humans in any way involved with any of this.
So the Controllers and Conformers would not merely seek to gather and accumulate resources, they would seek also to eliminate any competition for these resources, however slight or inconsequential, however small or disorganized that competition might be, in the form of the natural, authentic, but also individualistic Small Accumulator.
They did this in a number of ways, beginning with gathering and hoarding as much of the available resources as they could.
Hoarding in this way would leave the non-conforming Small Accumulator — the Authentic — with less than enough even to survive. So the Controller-Conformers would create scarcity. They created also starvation and death for the Authentic.
Think back, now, scarcity does not exist in Nature. You can see that if you but look. Imagine any natural setting. The only way that you can view that environment as not prodigious with possibilities for sustenance, shelter, or any of the physical needs is if one has narrowed one’s understanding of what satisfies one’s needs. Looking at any environment from the perspective of seeking one or a few items in particular is the only way most environments can be seen to be at all lacking. But expanding one’s understanding of what can be used to satisfy one’s physical needs to what is usable and possible, one cannot help but see Nature as a cornucopia. In your mythologies you display your lost understanding that Nature is really that way, and that you have simply stopped seeing that.
No. What you have dreamed up instead is this idea of scarcity. But scarcity is not a true perception of Nature, it is one that has been perpetrated by humans themselves — in particular, the Controller-Conformer alliance — for their ends alone. How better to persuade authentic Small Accumulators to become Conformers or at least to bend to Controller’s wills than to make it that they have no recourse of resorting to Nature on their own — whether true or not? And, indeed, the Controller-Conformer alliance, in gathering and hoarding resources well beyond any need, they sought to create that scarcity in reality. They would elicit compliance by eliminating alternatives.
This was in many ways the same as the way humans elicited compliance from other planetmates — “domesticating” them — by corralling them and eliminating their possibilities of sustaining themselves except through the controlling humans. The obvious difference is that humans, in general, would not be corralled … well, not in any obvious way. We will leave out for now the creation of urban centers and the enforced dependence of the population on city and village economics for the satisfaction of needs. But, at least ostensibly, authentic small accumulating humans were not corralled. They, at least initially, had freedom of movement, however self-enslaving they were to their domiciles and in their sedentary lifeways.
But a virtual domestication of humans by the Controller-Conformer alliance could be brought about by limiting resources available to any but them. By creating scarcity in the environment, in general, they could make all humans in that environment dependent on and looking to them who had stored and had gathered those resources.
But they went even further: The Controller-Conformers would employ other stratagems to persuade the non-conforming to become “domesticated” — just like the planetmates humans had corralled. Causing deprivation was the stick, but persuasion to become Conformers and to enjoy the benefits of “social conformity” was the carrot. The values of
social conformity would be paraded about for all to see. It became ever more important to display such differences in status through ostentatious dress and possessions.
Fancy dress would say two things: For the Conformer, it would say, “I am better than you.” In this way it would reward the conformer for her or his sycophancy by providing its opposite — an ego inflation — in relation to other people. And to the Authentic or the Small Accumulator of any sort it said, “You can have this if you obey.” That is to say, conform and be rewarded. Further, that not only can you increase your possessions by conformity, but also you can increase your status and have other Small Accumulators be sycophantic to you, too.
So, ostentatious dress and elaborate displays of possession and domicile established hierarchies of importance, with each level garnering for its members the psychological satisfaction of being sucked up to from those below, while the members of each level would be led to feel inferior to, jealous of, and so persuaded to emulate and suck up to, those on the level above.
Humiliation, jealousy, dominance, submission, power, obedience were all orchestrated in these games of hierarchy. But the bottom line was that Authentics were pressured both by being starved and beaten into submission with the stick of scarcity and by being persuaded into conformity using the carrot of status, possessions, and the reward of psychological tokens in the new game of one-up-manship.
And if neither worked — the stick of scarcity or the carrot of status and conspicuous consumption — then there was harassment, scapegoating, belittlement, ostracism, and ridicule.
If conformity could not be persuaded it would be demanded and coerced. Controller-Conformer elites would create and sustain sets of rules to suit their ends, to which at least Small Accumulators must be obedient. Creating law in this way, they created outlaws. Defining criminality, they created criminals. For laws and rules would not be to benefit the greater good of all but simply that of the Controllers. So hardly would such rules sit neatly upon the desires of the members of society themselves, in particular, the Authentics. So the establishment of societal codes was a covert way by which the Controllers could mark the Nonconforming Authentics as criminals. And this was helpful to them for, by rationalizing it as “law enforcement,” it enabled them in the use of physical force, capture, enslavement, physical punishment and torture, and even death.
So the third way Small Accumulators had their numbers come under pressure — outside of desertions to the ranks of Conformers and the persuasive forces of scarcity and reward — was through outright attack and brutality.
In the last analysis, the Controller-Conformer alliance could eliminate any use of resources by anyone with ends of their own and not of the alliance through torture, imprisonment, and death.
So Controllers and Conformers would have extreme advantages over Non-Conformers and they would dominate in the circles of increasing densities of societies. They would reduce the numbers of any opposing them, that is to say, any with traits or qualities that were not controlling or sycophantic, by persuading them, by killing them, or through the fact that Authentics would move away. Authentics would succumb to the wishes of the Controllers or they would be enslaved and killed, thus dying out, or they would run away to live in groups farther and farther away from the reach of the Controller-Conformer populations.
All in all, over time and in these ways, the old ways that were harmonious with Nature gave way to new ways of dominance, power, sycophancy, repression of personhood and emotion, and enslavement … with much smaller groups of Authentics living either silently or away from the population centers.
Return to The Great Reveal from the Planetmates, The Sixteenth Prasad: Greed and Oppression — The Rich Begin Calling the Tune, 25,000 B.C.
To Read the Entire Book … on-line, free at this time … Go toThe Great Reveal from The Planetmates
To purchase any of Michael Adzema’s books, available in print and e-book formats, go to Michael Adzema’s books at Amazon.
Invite you to join me on Twitter:
friend me on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/sillymickel
Posted in Anthropology, audio, authenticity, Consciousness, Environmentalism, Evolution, individualism, life, meaning, Metaphysics, nonconform, Philosophy, Politics, Primal Spirit, Primal Spirituality, Psychology, Religion, Spirituality, video
Tags: advantages, amenable, authentic, Authentics, behavior, Big Accumulators, birth trauma, Conforming, Conforming Underling, control, Controller, controlling, crazed brains, deprivation, deprive, desire, doing bidding, drive, excessive, fear, hardship, high accumulating, natural, no end, overlords, pain, physical, power, relief, resources, serving ends, Small Accumulators, strength, struggle, survival, uncertainty, underlings, Wannabe Controllers
The Cycle of All Events, the Evolution of Parenting, and Auspicious Collective Regressions: Being Crazy in an Insane World Might Mean You’re the Sane One
What’s Involved in Stopping War and Ecocide and the Necessary Mess of Transformation: Hard to Believe, But We’re Getting Saner
Chapter Nine: Regressions in the Service of Society — Messy Healing
There Is a Cycle to All Events … The Spiral Dance, Why We Can’t Get No Satisfaction, and Where There Is Real Hope
The Spiral Dance – The Cycle of All Events: Wedded to Rebirthing Rituals, the Inevitability of Disappointment, and Where There is Real Hope
Wedded to Rebirthing Rituals
In turning toward these feelings we embrace, feel, and if we go deeply enough into that, we relive the roots of them and resolve them finally.
If we face these inner forces—we call that feeling them…in this instance, feeling through or reliving one’s birth—we integrate them and heal the underlying trauma, the perinatal trauma.
Or the individual and society can avoid this going within—as depicted in the peace symbol—and can choose instead to act them out, which is the peace symbol upside down—the Satan symbol, the pentagram.
In acting them out, one distracts oneself from the uncomfortable feelings, which though not focused on, are still there. One tries to be “strong” in the face of feelings but one is actually driven and directed by them—they “take over one’s mind.” This is the source of the idea of spirit possession and in general of the idea that a devil or Satan can take over one’s soul.
So in running from our feelings we are captured and enslaved by them, we are forced to act them out in ways we would not otherwise choose which are negative to horrible but in all cases self-sabotaging. Of course war is the most horrible, most self-sabotaging, greatest, and most all-consuming form of such acting-out…the greatest struggle.
Humans are characterized by a particular kind of birth process. It is a coming into being that is traumatic and which is related to our distinction of standing upright and thereby decreasing the pelvic opening as well as suffocating the fetus prior to birth. The fact is that because of this “distinction” we are destined to go through periods of rebirthing purificatory rituals, whether for good or ill. [Footnote 1]
For we are psychologically wedded to reliving that which we could not fully experience at the time because of the overwhelming quality of pain associated with it.
A “Spiral Dance”
These rebirthing rituals we are doomed to repeat, one way or the other. We are going to act out this primal pain—this birth trauma—in an unending cycle of feelings having these components
- Periods of feelings of expansion
- Closedness or entrapment, guilt, and depression
In winning the “war” or having the success or achievement, there begins the same cycle of expansion followed by entrapment. Losing the war…the struggle, the battle…is akin to death, even if there is no death. There is numbness and repression…akin to a kind of “limbo”…before life can begin anew. A reconception is necessary.
The Pattern of Our First Nine Months Imprints Us For Our Entire Human Lives
The reemergence of hope in individuals and societies is biologically equivalent to conception. And following this reconceiving, there is a similar cycle of reemerging strength—akin to the expansion that follows winning. Then there is continuing depression or overarching gloom and helplessness feelings coupled with revenge feelings and blame as individuals and societies stew in the vessel of indecision, inaction, and doubt. This is quite like the closedness and guilt which follows achievement-success-victory. Note, however, that the revenge and blame feelings here are aspects of the BPM II matrix, just as is closedness and guilt.
Can’t Get No Satisfaction
And then the cycle is the same again. Specifically, there is aggression against the oppressor (War and revolution both see the foe as an oppressor, even if one is actually the one who is the aggressor.) What follows upon fighting is release or “death”; and so on around. The “happily ever after” that inspires such battle truly only exists in fantasies and fairy tales. Prosperity and feelings of success are unfortunately doomed, on this physical plane of existence, to be short-lived.
Where There Is Real Hope
It would seem we are fated to never be happy, for long. But progress is possible; herein lies our only real choice in the entire scenario. For we either work through these cycles in some deep psychologically transformative way that helps us deal with and pass beyond the difficult and painful parts of the cycle as well as helps to fade the imprints’ potency in determining our behavior or we are doomed to act them out in the external world in ways that we are blindly unaware are not congruent with the actual facts of our circumstances and are harmful to ourselves and others around us.
We are fated to experience these cycles of birth, and we will either act them out disastrously or we find ways of dealing with them inside of ourselves in some way—and some ways are better than others for doing this—so that we can have some inner distance from these patterns and therefore some conscious ability or choice around our actions when these pushes and pulls arise.
Railing Against the Darkness: The Vanity of Will, The Impotence of Reason, Progress Requires Regress, and Healing Is Nothing if Not Messy
Railing Against the Darkness, The Vanity of Will, The Impotence of Reason, and Social Progress Requires Regression
The Vanity of Will, The Impotence of “Reason”
What we absolutely don’t have, yet arrogantly think we do, is the ability—through will or reason alone—to choose light over darkness, to replace these inner veils of distortion with clarity of thought and perception and hence of positive behavior and actions while in the midst of them. Trying to reason with and to obtain truly desired outcomes is about as possible as trying to reason with a lizard and convince it to conform to one’s wishes for its behavior. For good reason: Indeed our rational mind is as split off from the “reptilian brain” inside us within which these imprints circulate and from which they arise as are we from the consciousness of a gila monster.
What We Call “Reason” Is Largely Just Rationalization
This impotence of intellectual understanding in the face of these patterns of self-destruction occurs because these schemas are rooted in memories existing in an emotional and entirely dissociated part of the brain, which is hardly touched by neocortical admonishing of any kind. As deMause correctly points out,
[The fetus’s] “early experiences have been found to be recorded in a separate early neural network—a dissociated emotional memory system centering in the amygdala, quite distinct from the declarative memory system centering in the hippocampus that is established in later childhood.” [Footnote 2]
Disclaiming these cycles, which inevitably pass through darkness, and reliance on “will-power” to change one’s patterns, which includes self-sabotage, has been exposed in its impotence in modern times. We see as evidence the growing acknowledgment of the ineffectiveness and, indeed, counter-effectiveness of psychoanalysis. [Footnote 3]
Railing Against the Darkness
So the question begging to be asked is “What do we do about it?” What do we do about these pernicious cycles?
And when these elements erupt in society in harmless, possibly healing ways, how do we view them? Do we, as Mayr and Boelderl do in their article, “The Pacifier Craze: Collective Regression in Europe,” decry the regression…as if by disclaiming it we could somehow keep the cycle from happening? [Footnote 4]
Mayr and Boelderl write, for example, that the situation of collective regression in Europe “strikes us as being high-explosive [sic] and bitter enough.” [Footnote 5]
In another place they exclaim, “What is horrible about this insight [about the increasing collective regression in Europe] is the additional observation that regression is becoming still more radical.” [Footnote 6]
This response of railing against the “Darkness” is a Freudian response. Yet it is not even a neo-Freudian one, since regression in the service of the ego—which began to be seen as ever more important by neo-Freudians—is not acknowledged, let alone considered.
Social Progress Requires Regression
That regression in the service of the ego is not considered is confirmed by Mayr and Boelderl in their statement that “[R]egression by definition is a process of repression and a defense mechanism.” [Footnote 7]
These are surprising words, in light of the concept of regression in the service of the ego and awareness of the clinically based evolution of psychotherapeutic theory since Freud’s original postulations, over a half-century ago.
They are even more awry if one considers the universal, cross-cultural, implementation by societies of rebirthing rituals to handle the same kinds of forces we are confronted with. The anthropological literature is rife with these accounts.
Further, Grof has meticulously shown that regularly going into altered states of consciousness where one confronts this material is a prime function of cultures, and it occurs nearly universally although it is woefully lacking in Western culture for the most part.
Moreover, these words by Mayr and Boelderl indicate a conflict with or ignorance of the fact that deMause’s theory of evolution of historical change requires regression on the part of parents, while parenting their children, as the primary “engine” of sociopsychological progress.
For deMause writes,
“[T]he ultimate source of all historical change is psychogenesis, the lawful change in childrearing modes occurring through generational pressure…. Psychogenesis depends upon the ability of parents and surrogates to regress to the psychic age of their children and work through the anxieties of that age better the second time than in their own childhood.” (op. cit., 1982, p. 135, emphasis mine.)
But this mistake by these two social scientists would not be all that important if it was not the perfect example of the kind of uninformed attitude we have, generally speaking, in Western societies about these forces. This attitude is reinforced by a Judeo-Christian tradition of specialness and scapegoating in the West. It is a pervasive feeling about these things; specifically it, itself, is the actual defense. While this is a widespread reaction to our inner realities it is far from science, and even further from the truth or reality about these things.
“Stop It!” … Yeah, That’s Gonna Work
At any rate, if we adopt this Western, Judeo-Christian, Freudian tactic of decrying the darkness, we are as effective in derailing the cycle of violence and war as Freudians are in what amounts to admonishing their clients to “stop it!” when it comes to their neurotic self-sabotaging.
For people cannot will themselves to merely stop their cycles of neurotic self-sabotage and self-destruction, which are the individual manifestations/ acting out of their birth traumas. As mentioned these directors of action operate out of a different part of the psyche, and brain, than one’s conscious willing part. They are simply not accessible, so hardly amenable, to rational or willful input. And changing one’s thoughts to affect them is about as helpful as rearranging the furniture on the deck of the Titanic.
People Who Have It All Figured Out Are the Ones to Watch Out For … Emotional “Sickness” Might Indicate More “Wellness”
Regression in the Service of the Ego
With the exposure of the ineffectiveness of the Freudian tactic of intellectual understanding has come the Freudian movement’s disintegration into schools advocating various other strategies for change.
These schools/strategies include the psychiatric—the use of drugs; the neo-Freudians who acknowledge and use regression in the service of the ego and abreaction; the humanistic-existential approaches, stressing the “experiential”; and the Jungians and neo-Jungians, who would seek the resolution of these cycles in their inner archetypal acting out, resulting in an eventual rootedness of the ego in a higher Self (a spiritual center) beyond or transcending the cycles. [Footnote 8]
Other approaches include the bulk of the spiritual, new-age, or transpersonal means that are flourishing these days. These alternative paths basically differ from all others in their belief that one can simply bypass these perinatal pulls and pushes and go directly to the Light or the Self by dismissing the birth cycles, or the Darkness or Shadow, through affirming the Light, meditating the Darkness out or the Light in, changing one’s thoughts, creating one’s reality, and various combinations of these.
Finally, these newer schools and strategies for healing include those of what might be called experiential psychotherapy, which includes primal therapy, holotropic breathwork, some forms of (experiential) meditation (Vipassana meditation, for example), Reichian and bioenergetic approaches, some forms of hypnotherapy—experiential ones—ones that involve reliving traumas—and virtually all the techniques, treatments, and correctives that are espoused in the field of pre- and perinatal psychology.
The point is that from a good number of these other-than-Freudian perspectives—and all of those that acknowledge the importance of regression in the service of the ego—and from the perspective of the entire field of experiential psychotherapy, the answer to the cycles of violence, war, and death-rebirth is to stop the acting out, not by simply intellectually decrying it—as if one can actually talk oneself out of one’s inner fears and one’s Darkness/Shadow—but by reliving those cycles of violence at their origins…their primal roots. In the case of perinatal forces, those forces from “the dark side,” this is accomplished by reliving the violence of birth, a perinatal trauma that is thoroughly and masterfully delineated by Grof and deMause. [Footnote 9]
Auspicious Collective Regressions
But from this perspective of experiential psychotherapy—one completely congruent with and grateful of deMause’s contributions in psychohistory as well—regression, in Europe, or elsewhere, is not seen as something to decry, disclaim, be horrified of, or be seen as dangerous but is seen as an opportunity. Regression is certainly not seen as a form of defense but as the opposite of that. Regression is part of a process of diminishing one’s defenses against one’s internal reality of pain and trauma.
Thus, examples of blatant collective regression as in Europe—more so to the extent they are relived, released, and integrated—are entirely auspicious for the eventual elimination of war as a collective device of acting out—defending against—the painful feelings coming from one’s personal history which one carries around, all unknowingly, and which pervade, in one way or another, in forms subtle and not so subtle, every moment of one’s consciousness in the present.
From this experiential psychotherapeutic perspective, we have a different feeling about developments like those that Mayr and Boelderl describe as collective regression in Europe and Lawson describes as occurring at rock concerts. [Footnote 10]
From a more enlightened viewpoint these cultural phenomena should have us, if not dancing in the streets, at least hopeful of a gradual decrease in the use of war and violence. Why? It is because the youth who display this “regression” so blatantly were brought up by an “advanced” form of child-rearing than that of previous generations, that they have fewer defenses, fewer layers of obfuscation covering up their unconscious psychodynamics; consequently the regression is seen more clearly in their behavior. [Footnote 11]
Unflinching Belief Related to Total Dissociation
Why is this important? DeMause points out that people do go to war, and that prior to it their perinatal dynamics come to the fore, as evidenced by perinatal-laden words and images in the media and in leaders’ speeches used to describe the situation and its dynamics. Thus, our leaders take us into war, they act out their perinatal dynamics…and we in following them act out ours…in such gruesomely overt ways because these dynamics are so hidden, repressed, and overlaid with defenses that the conscious mind has absolutely no access to, and hence insight into, them as being part of one’s unconscious dynamics.
Consequently the conscious mind is completely able to convince itself that those dynamics are actual, real, and doubtless parts of the situation and therefore require an actual, real, and extreme response. The amount of resolve required to act out war can only be wrought of an unflinching belief in the rightness, the absolute correctness of one’s perspective of the situation and therefore of that extreme course of response. And that can only be brought about by a total dissociation from one’s perinatal traumas, and a complete and utter projection of it on the outside—the enemy, to be specific.
Blatant “Sickness” Related to Being Real
The contrary is also true: When there does not exist that total and complete dissociation of the perinatal trauma—when it is, as in Europe and rock concerts currently, closer to the surface, less defended against, less repressed and, hence, more blatant—it is more accessible to consciousness and less likely to be acted out in the extreme as in war. Instead it is more likely to be acted out in less extreme forms, such as jumping into mosh pits, carrying pacifiers, listening to baby tunes about the, very real, difficulties of being a baby, and so on.
Finally, it is more likely to be actually allowed to emerge in consciousness and be relived, and thereby “healed”…and gone beyond, to be replaced by something more benign and more socially constructive, and thus to be removed forever as a motivation to war or violence. This is the auspicious view of the developments described by Mayr and Boelderl. [Footnote 12]
Janov was the first to point out that a permanent resolution of underlying trauma initially entailed an aggravation of symptoms and symbolic acting out. That is to say, the underlying dynamics become more blatant and apparent in behavior. [Footnote 13]
Janov was also the first to note that the acting-out and overt neurotic was closer to being “real,” and therefore really sane, than his or her highly functioning and “normal,” but repressed, rigidly defended, and unfeeling neighbor. [Footnote 14]
The Most Evolved Parenting … Boomers and Millennials … and The Cyclical Nature of History: I Know It’s Hard to Believe But We’ve Been Getting Saner
Thanks to You We’re Getting Saner: The Most Evolved Parenting … Boomers and Millennials … and The Cyclical Nature of History
Evolution of Parenting – We’ve Been Getting Saner
Finally, the correctness of the view that being “crazy” in an insane world might be more sane has been borne out in recent history. DeMause describes an evolution of parenting from ancient times to the present which involved ever decreasing psychosis and violence and increasing caring and consciousness of the needs of children. He connects this decrease in violent child caring to ever decreasing violence and psychotic acting out in societies.
DeMause labels the most common modern parenting mode the socializing mode. Short of the quite recent helping mode—which only really rose to prominence in the last three decades—the socializing mode is the most advanced and most humane.
Lest there be any confusion, I wish to point out that my own theoretical understanding differs from deMause’s in one important respect. While I agree with his evolution of child-rearing over the course of civilization and within recorded time, I believe he is wrong about prehistory and what primal peoples were like and the kind of child-caring they engaged in. He depicts prehistoric societies as psychotically oblivious of the needs of children, engaging in, first, infanticidal; then, second, abandoning; then, third, ambivalent modes of child-rearing. Whereas it seems to me the overwhelming evidence and increasing numbers of anthropologists point to a natural “organic” child-caring being employed in the the mists of the past quite a bit more “advanced” than even many modes employed today.
I believe the change from the loving parenting we see in many primal peoples and in Nature among many of our planetmates to the infanticidal, abandoning, and ambivalent modes he has described for early historic cultures is a product of that ever increasing control of Nature that went into full gear with the agrarian revolution, some ten to twenty-five thousand years ago. So, I am saying that brutal parenting was a consequence of “civilization” and was at its worst at the beginnings of recorded time.
But I agree we have been gradually evolving to better modes of child-caring over the history of civilization to the most sane and psychologically beneficial modes employed in recent decades, which, you might want to note, are very much like the modes of the earliest humans. I describe why and how we lost our connection with Nature and loving ways of parenting—how we left “Eden”—in my book and blog “The Great Reveal.”
The Cycles of Time
I believe my understanding shows once again how much of what modern folks thought of “development”—including it being linear and increasing from “darkness” to “light” with ourselves always at the top (conveniently)—is wrong and merely part of an anthropocentric bias and an ethnocentric heritage. For more and more, as we lay down those blinders to reality, we notice the evidence of the cyclical nature of everything—from our lives (ashes to ashes) to the physical Universe’s expansion and contraction, to the vibrations at the subatomic level, the waves in the sea, the turning of the Earth and the revolutions of the solar systems, and I contend now also, the so-called “history” of our species on Earth. This is the thoroughly postmodern idea that human time is also cyclical, with over and again peoples returning to earlier halcyon times only to “fall” away from them.
The Worst of Times Quality of Current Events
This idea of time as cyclical not linear is in keeping with Eastern philosophies, as well as indigenous ones. Hindu thinking currently has us at the depths of the Kali Yuga, the worst part of the cycle right now, with matters to be reversed very soon and the best of times just ahead. And, as I have been describing in my books Falls from Grace and Primal Renaissance and will be directly pointing out in my upcoming book, Primal Return, we are currently seeing a most necessary return to a more harmonious way of being and a more natural self. And with it, requiring it, to some extent preceding it, we are evolving to the most advanced mode of loving parenting.
The “Best of Times” Nature of Our Parenting
Psychohistorian Glenn Davis, following deMause, analyzed the most advanced form of child-caring short of the most recent helping mode—the psychogenic parenting mode deMause termed socializing—and found that it comprised four submodes. In order, beginning in the mid-nineteenth century to the mid-twentieth century and each one a more “evolved” and humane one than the previous one, they are the submodes of psychic control, aggressive training, vigorous guidance, and delegated release. [Footnote 15]
Oh, Be-HAVE. WWII Generation … Received Aggressive-Training and Vigorous-Guidance Parenting
Davis concluded that in America the Vietnam War was perpetrated by individuals belonging almost entirely to the aggressive-training and vigorous-guidance psychoclasses. [Footnote 16]
Questioning Authority and Oneself Is Good. Boomers … Received Delegated Release Parenting
Yet the Vietnam War was brought to an end largely as a result of the efforts of an antiwar movement whose largest component was a Sixties youth brought up under a more advanced delegated-release child-caring mode. [Footnote 17]
The delegated release mode, which resulted in the phenomenon of Sixties youth and the counterculture, is the most “advanced” mode short of the helping mode.
“Let’s Collaborate” – Millennials. Received the Most Advanced Parenting – Helping … “We Just Want You to Be Happy.”
The helping mode is the child-caring mode employed widely by the Sixties generation for their children, the Millennial Generation, also known as Generation Y. So, a helping mode of parenting was enjoyed by the children of a delegated-release psychoclass, the Boomers. Sixties youth are seen, psychologically, to have the most the most “advanced” ego structures short of their children taught within a helping mode. [Footnote 18]
Ending War and Humanicide—Peace Is Worth its Price of Suffering: Better “Emotionally Disturbed” Than “Healthily” Fighting in War
Walking In Another’s Moccasins
It is obvious that these Sixties youth did not have the same unflinching and unqualified belief in the absolute rightness of their country’s position in Vietnam as did many of their parents. This is obviously the case in a psychoclass of youth chanting a generational mantra, “Question authority!” and whose more extreme members would at times even go over to the perspective of seeing the war from the eyes of the “enemy,” the Other.
As I mentioned earlier, among the Sixties Generation we saw Jane Fonda’s journey to Hanoi, the waving of North Vietnamese flags by protesters, and the carrying of little red books on the sayings of Chairman Mao. These are obvious indicators that the generation as a whole was open to seeing the war from the North Vietnamese perspective: That is, as a conflict perpetrated by a foreign nation that was hypocritical in its espousal of democracy in that it prevented democratic elections that would have without doubt elected Ho Chi Minh and instead it installed a puppet-ruler in the South, making Vietnam a virtual colony of the United States. From this perspective, the Vietnam War was for the Vietnamese as much a war for independence as the American Revolution was for the U.S.
This is just an example of how there are two sides to every issue and how an attempt at empathy or “walking in The Other’s moccasins”—made possible by a closeness to a perinatal unconscious that is also an opposite perspective than that of the conscious mind—can lead, at the minimum, to the reluctance necessary to prevent engaging in at least the most blatant and horrific forms of violence…against others, but consider also, against Nature.
The Perinatal Generation
At any rate, is there evidence that this undermining of the self-righteous position necessary for the instigation and carrying out of war and ecocide—this ability to see at least somewhat from The Other’s perspective and not just one’s own—is in truth correlated with a closeness to perinatal dynamics, a closeness to the unconscious for that generation of youth, those of the Sixties? The answer: Absolutely yes!
As mentioned in a previous part, sociologist Kenneth Keniston did psychological studies of members of the Sixties Generation.
He was inspired to do so through his noticing that he was seeing something really unusual and radically different in these youth than what he had ever seen. This led to his fascination with discovering what made them so different. And he documented his findings in two books—The Uncommitted: Alienated Youth in American Society and Young Radicals: Notes on Committed Youth. Roughly speaking he chose to study the unconscious dynamics of both the “alienated-hippie” and the “activist” sectors, respectively, of that generation. [Footnote 19]
At the risk of repeating myself, I wish to remind the reader that a reading of his books—keeping in mind that Keniston knew nothing of perinatal dynamics at that time, and few people did, for that matter—reveals a degree of perinatal imagery, fantasy, and acting out—especially among “the uncommitted”—enough to make a troll-handling, pacifier-wearing, mosh-pit jumping youth of today to blush! [Footnote 20]
Self-Analysis and Psychological-Mindedness
Because of this peculiar perinatal access, I don’t believe it is any coincidence that Keniston also found an unusual amount of inner reflection—questioning oneself—alongside the more well known questioning authority. This he labeled “overexamined life” for the alienated sector and “psychological mindedness” for the activists.
Better Emotionally Disturbed Than “Healthily” Engaging in War
So, being close to one’s perinatal imprints, being less defended against one’s inner unconscious painful memories, leads to one being able to question not just oneself—and therefore to be a catalyst to personal growth and a quest for truth—but also the actions of one’s society. It is a counterbalance to our tendency to act out in violence to others as in war and to Nature as in ecocide. It means people will suffer more inner turmoil and pain, will feel more psychologically “disturbed,” and will be less likely to take it out on others, will be less likely to make others or the environment “pay” for what happened to them.
Let us contrast that with its opposite. DeMause writes,
Hitler’s projection of his fears…into Jews and foreigners helped him avoid a psychotic breakdown and enabled him to function during his later life, as long as others shared his delusion of poisonous enemies.
Therefore acting out collectively, as in war, can prevent a psychotic breakdown in certain individuals.
Better Psychotic Than Waging War
But when the consequences of acting out one’s birth trauma, collectively, is millions of people—including oneself—dead, not to mention the uncountably large loss of material and personal resources, it is clear that by comparison a psychotic breakdown is a more benign alternative for either the individual or the society in which that or those individuals act.
Similarly, not providing the outlet of war as a collective birth ritual…oftentimes, for the soldier involved, euphemistically called a “rite of passage”…would allow the genuine neurotic breakdowns, the collapse of people’s defenses, and their opening up to their underlying perinatal dynamics. Thus accessed, they can be healed, or in the least they would prevent the kind of unflinching belief or self-righteousness required for war and violence.
Some folks might even be motivationally paralyzed—receiving information from the unconscious that contradicts and undermines the stance and beliefs of their conscious ego. But when that egoistic stance is slanted, commonly, towards war, violence, selfishness and greed and corresponding environmental apathy, then better one would be indecisive, overwhelmed, and doing nothing.
The Price of Emotional Pain Is Minuscule Compared to That of War
Yet it is true that this neurotic breakdown, of at least a small amount, on the scale of society would result in the kind of collective regressions that Mayr and Boelderl, and Lawson describe. That is, the cause of peace, of the saving of human lives, requires that people pay the price of encountering their primal pain.
By all measures, this peace price is minuscule. It is even more worth it when you take into account the fact that many people, after initially “breaking down” for lack of a collective…and highly destructive…act-out like war/aggression, will actually succeed in reconstructing a self more in line with reality, through the dynamics and means categorized under the term regression in the service of the ego, desccribed above. Regardless of professional help…which would be nice but is not always available or practical…some people just find a way.
Continue with Chapter Ten: Where There Is Hope, Cultural Rebirthing
1. A. Briend, “Fetal Malnutrition: The Price of Upright Posture?” British Medical Journal 2 (1979): 317-319.
2. DeMause, op. cit., 1995, p. 12, emphasis in original.
3. See, for example, Alice Miller, For Your Own Good: Hidden Cruelty in Child-Rearing and the Roots of Violence, trans. by Hildegarde and Hunter Hannum. New York: Farrar, Straus and Giroux, especially “Vantage Point 1990,” pp. vii-ix.
4. Daniela F. Mayr & Artur R. Boelderl, “The Pacifier Craze: Collective Regression in Europe.” The Journal of Psychohistory 21 (1993): 143-156.
5. Ibid., p. 144.
6. Ibid., p. 148, emphasis mine.
7. Ibid., pp. 149-150.
8. Regarding the “experiential,” I should make clear that this approach is, from the perspective of the experiential psychotherapeutic approach I will be describing shortly, actually the superficial symbolic acting out of these underlying and powerful cycles in a way that is only a little less impotent than the Freudians.
9. DeMause, op. cit., 1995.
11. Mayr and Boelderl claim quite wrongly and quite strangely—as if to make the facts not conflict with DeMause’s psychogenic theory, or as if to cover up some hole in their analysis—that those caught up in the pacifier craze were raised under the intrusive and socializing parenting modes (op. cit., 1993, p. 145) and yet, in 1992, were between the ages of 15 and 30 (Ibid., p. 143). This is hard to understand because these youth would have been born between the years 1962 and 1977 in advanced Western countries of mostly Western Europe—Italy, Germany, Austria, all of Europe, and even the U.S. (Ibid.).
However, the intrusive and socializing modes are associated, by DeMause, with the eighteenth century and the nineteenth to mid-twentieth centuries, respectively, in the Western world (DeMause, op. cit., 1982, p. 62). On the other hand, the helping mode begins mid-twentieth century in the Western world (Ibid., p. 63).
The conclusion from this is that these youth, described by Mayr and Boelderl, would have been greatly influenced by the helping mode. They would be expected, at least, to have received the most advanced methods of child-caring overall in the world at this time—considering DeMause’s theory—since they are the most recent progeny of the Western world!
Indeed, if these cannot be considered products of the helping mode, who can be? In order for Mayr and Boelderl to dispute this and claim they were exceptions to the rule and were raised under intrusive and socializing modes, they would have had to do a study demonstrating this, or at least cite one done. And this they do not do.
12. Michael D. Adzema, “Reunion With the Positive (Self), Part 1: The Other Half of ‘The Cure.’” Primal Renaissance: The Journal of Primal Psychology 1(2): 72-85. Reprinted on the Primal Spirit site.
15. Glenn Davis, Childhood and History in America. New York: The Psychohistory Press, 1976.
19. Kenneth Keniston, The Uncommitted: Alienated Youth in American Society. New York: Dell, 1965; Young Radicals: Notes on Committed Youth. New York: Harcourt, Brace & World, Inc., 1968.
20.While these aspects of youth are laid out by Keniston, a fuller delineation of these dynamics are to be seen in my work-in-progress, tentatively titled The Once and Current Generation: “Regression,” Mysticism, and “My Generation.” [Stay tuned.]
Continue with Chapter Ten: Where There Is Hope, Cultural Rebirthing
Invite you to join me on Twitter:
friend me on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/sillymickel
Posted in Anthropology, authenticity, being yourself, Birth, Child Abuse, Consciousness, Environmentalism, Evolution, God, individualism, life, meaning, nonconform, Philosophy, Politics, Primal Spirit, Primal Spirituality, Psychology, Religion, Spirituality
Tags: 60s, abandoning mode, abreaction, achievement, act-out, acting out, activist, affirmation, aggression, aggressive training, agrarian revolution, alienation, altered states, alternative, Alvin Lawson, ambivalent mode, america, American Revolution, amygdala, anthropocentrism reality, anthropology, antiwar movement, anxiety, apathy, apocalypse, archetype, arrogance, Arthur Janov, baby, baby boomers, battle, behavior, beliefs, bioenergetics, Birth, birth ritual, birth trauma, boomers, BPM II, brain, Carl Jung, Chairman Mao, child, child-caring, child-rearing, children, civilization, clarity, collaboration, colony, conception, Consciousness, control, counterculture, crazy, CULTURE, cycle, cycle of time, cycles, darkness, death, death rebirth, declarative memory, defense mechanism, defenses, defensiveness, delegate release, delusion, democracy, depression, development, devil, die, disappointment, DISCOMFORT, dissociation, distortion, earth, ecocide, eden, Ego, ego structure, elections, emotional memory, emotional sickness, emotionally disturbed, emotions, enemy, entrapment, Environment, ethnocentrism, event, evolution, existence, existentialism, expansion, experiential, experiential psychotherapy, extinction, fairy tale, Falls from Grace, fantasy, fear, feeling, feelings, fetus, fight, fighting, Freudian, Garden of Eden, generation, generation y, gestation, gila monster, Glenn Davis, gloom, God, greed, guilt, happiness, healing, health, hell, helping mode, higher self, Hinduism, history, Ho Chi Minh, Holocaust, holotropic breathwork, hope, human, humanicide, humanistic psychology, humans, humanticide, hypnotherapy, ignorance, impotence, imprint, imprints, individual and society, infanticidal mode, insane, integration, Jane Fonda, Jews, Judeo Christian, Kali Yuga, Kenneth Keniston, life, light, lives, Lloyd Demause, Love, matrix, Mayr and Boelderl, media, meditation, memories, Millennials, mind, moratorium, mosh pit, natural self, Nature, neo Freudian, neo-Jungian, neoFreudian, neurosis, new age, nine months, nonordinary states, normality, occupy wall street, oppressor, organic child caring, overexamined life, ows, pacifier, pain, parenting, parents, pattern, peace, peace symbol, pelvic opening, pentagram, perinatal, perinatal psychology, perinatal trauma, personal growth, philosophy, physical plain, planet, planetmates, politics, possession, pre- and perinatal psychology, prehistory, prenatal, prenated, price, primal, primal pain, primal people, Primal Renaissance, primal return, primal root, primal therapy, progress, psyche, psychiatry, psychic control, psychoanalysis, psychoclass, psychodynamics, psychogenesis, psychogenic mode, psychohistory, psychological mindedness, psychologists, psychology, psychosis, psychotherapy, psychotic breakdown, question authority, rational, re-experience, real, real person, reality, reason, rebirth, rebirthing, reconception, red books, regression, regression in the service of the ego, regressions, Reichian, release, religion, relive, reliving, repression, reptilian brain, resolution, revolution, rite of passage, ritual, rock concert, roots, sane, Satan, satisfaction, school, science, self, self-analysis, self-destruction, self-righteousness, self-sabotage, selfishness, shadow, sickness, sigmund freud, sixties, social science, socializing mode, society, soul, species, spiral dance, spirit, spirit possession, spirituality, Stanislav Grof, strategy, struggle, suffering, symptom, The Great Reveal, The Uncommitted, time, trance, transcendence, transformation, transpersonal, trauma, troll handlers, trolls, truth, uncomfortable feelings, unconscious, unconsciousn, universe, vanity, Vietnam War, vigorous guidance, violence, Vipassana meditation, war, Wayseer, wayseer manifesto, wellness, Western, will, will power, womb, Word War II Generation, world, WWII, young radicals, youth., zombie.
Cycles of War, Cycles of Birth … What Can Be Done: Changing the Patterns of Millennia Requires Learning That Feeling Good Is Not Bad
Derailing the Cycles of War and Violence: What Say We Leave a Planet For Our Offspring? And Can You Handle Happiness?
Apocalypse No! Chapter Eight:
Derailing the Cycles of War and Violence
Why We Invite War, Allow Fascism, and Pollute: Our Coming Into the World Makes Us Want to Leave It
The question posed at the end of the last chapter was whether we had opened the door to an unimaginable armageddon or were experiencing the birth pangs of a massive consciousness transformation and subsequent Earth rebirth. Are we going to self-destruct, bringing death to the entire planet along with us, or will we become good citizens of this planet and our species continue on?
What Say We Leave a Planet For Our Offspring?
Most folks would think there would be only one answer to that question desired by virtually all humans. But in previous chapters, especially Apocalypse Emergency, Chapter Five: Death Wish – Thanatos Walking, I showed how, and why, that common-sense notion would, amazingly, be wrong: We saw how there is a huge percentage of our human Earth citizens, and a part of all of us, that wants to “throw in the towel.” This has always been true of humans, but it is of critical importance only now.
But I will assume anyone reading this will at least consciously be wanting our vital question to be answered in the affirmative. You know as well as I that the folks on the other side of this question are doing vastly different things right now than us and are nowhere to be found around here.
How Do We “Like” Life?
So the next thing to be addressed is how we might change our fortunes and live. Since continuing on is not just of matter of deciding it—voting “like” on it or checking its box—as we saw in Chapter Five: Death Wish, how can we get around this part of ourselves and our population that wants to do us all in? We need to know how to derail our perpetual cycles of war and violence. We need know how to quit bringing pollution and suffering on us. We have to know how we can stop our secret desire to take comfort in failure, how to “unlike” self-sabotage on our inner “profile.”
How Do We “Unlike” Fascism?
I have written a great deal on this question, including an entire book in 2011 on the way we act out this masochistic tendency politically and culturally by taking comfort in totalitarianism and embracing fascism. [Footnote 1]
For our purposes presently I will focus on the element of it all that is critical to answering our question. So we first need to look into the place from which emanates our dilemma. I showed that this bugaboo is our Will to Death.
Our Coming Into This World Makes Us Want to Leave It
Now we need to get more specific on this negative inclination of ours. As we have seen this Will to Death arises from human’s unique-among-all-species primal pain rooted in our singular way of coming into the world, our unique human birth.
We Need Look Deeper
We need to look deeper into the elements of that part of ourselves that would have us take us all down. We need inquire into that tendency of ours to choose pollution over health, tyranny over freedom, war over peace, enslavement over autonomy, violence over pacifism, oppression over liberty, misery over happiness. We must derail the cycles of war, violence, and fascism. We must know how to “like” happiness.
We Need Know Where Exactly to Focus Our Efforts to Be Successful
To do so, we must separate the skeins of this inner entanglement and shed light into this darkness within. We need to know specifically, precisely where to place the lever of effort we will apply to truly move the world, to derail it from its current acceleration into oblivion.
So we look now into the elements of that perinatal unconscious manifesting currently as a will to die on the grandest scale imaginable.
Cycles of War, Cycles of Birth
We find there are two researchers who are particularly relevant to our understanding of the elements of the perinatal unconscious in a way as to avert collective, worldwide disaster. These are Stanislav Grof and Lloyd DeMause. [Footnote 2]
Men Would Rather Be “Manly” Than…Alive…
[T]he group-fantasy shared prior to wars expresses the nation’s deep feeling that the increase in pleasure brought about by the prosperity and progress that usually precede wars “pollutes” the national blood-stream with sinful excess, making men “soft” and feminine”—a frightful condition that can only be cleansed by a blood-shedding purification. [Footnote 2]
Men are more terrified of appearing “feminine” than of losing their lives. Why we invite war.
DeMause is saying we go forever into war because after a while peace makes men feel guilty, “sinful.” Men have uncomfortable, even shameful…homophobic…feelings of being “soft” or “feminine” when their lives are good. So men choose the “purifying,” masculinizing ritual of war to fight off these feelings. Nothing distracts one from looking inward better than a “good, old-fashioned” life-or-death struggle, and war is the most all-encompassing of them.
Men are more terrified of appearing “soft” than having the boot of totalitarianism on their neck. Why we allow fascism.
What DeMause says about bringing war upon us can be said also about allowing fascism, inviting totalitarianism. For whether we are fighting enemies of another nation or struggling to survive against oppression at home, we are involved in a daily struggle. Secret to us, we feel better being engaged in a dramatic battle, though it brings us suffering and misery.
We simply can’t hack peace for very long. We feel guilty, for some reason, lolling on the beach. You ever notice how at the end of your vacation time, you are anxious for it to be over and to get back to work? That feeling—that one where we feel…guilty?…uncomfortable…tense?…unfulfilled?…(you tell me)—that’s it. That’s the one I’m talking about.
It happens the same way collectively after we have experienced a “vacation” of national peace—for example, in the Nineties when we were prosperous and mostly peaceful under Clinton. At the end of it, with Bush, we ended up getting the misery and struggle many in America were driven to want, though no one would ever admit that.
A quick aside. The fact that the majority of Americans actually didn’t vote for Bush and so tried to choose happiness over struggle is a source of hope for us in all this. That’s a hint of what’s coming.
Cycles of Birth, Cycles of War … The Four “Colors” of the Perinatal Veils and Why Women Fear Fatness and Men Fear Femininity
Four Kinds of Early Experience Color Our Adult Experience in Four Distinct Ways … Cycles of Birth and War
Four Kinds of Experiences in Our First Nine Months Imprint Us for Four Feeling “Flavors” as Adults
But for now, let us get back to this opening provided us. We can make better use of deMause’s insight on the birth feelings that take us into war using Stanislav Grof’s delineation of this birth unconscious of ours. Let us review as described earlier and further stipulate on them: Grof explains we are moved as adults by four specific kinds of drives emanating from our earliest experiences. These specific tendencies in us relate to four different times in the birth process which involve four radically different kinds of experiences.
Grof uses the term, basic perinatal matrices (BPMs), to refer to these four aspects of our inner urges. I will describe them here and refer to them along with DeMause’s cycles of social-historical violence and war to pull apart the roots of our current apocalyptic dilemma. [Footnote 3]
Our Tendency to Always Screw Up a Good Thing, BPM I
The first of Grof’s aspects of our unconscious he terms Basic Perinatal Matrix I, BPM I for short.
Prosperity and Progress Equal Feeling “Soft” and “Feminine”
Grof’s BPM I is sometimes described as “oceanic bliss” and involves the experiences and feelings related to the relatively undisturbed prenatal period. On the social, macrocosmic level, it is the period described in the quote by deMause above in which there is a period of “prosperity and progress” and feelings of being “soft” and “feminine.”
The strong connection between individual experience (personal psychology) and collective realities (social-historical events and elements) is patent here since in BPM I experience the individual is still in the mother’s womb and to some extent shares her identity, which is of course feminine. Being unborn and not having gone through the “toughening” experiences of birth and later trauma, which predominantly create one’s defenses, the individual is also “soft,” in other words, undefended.
“No Pain, No Gain,” Hell, Satan, and Poisonous Placenta; BPM II
To further review Grof’s schema and its relation to deMause’s cycles of war, I want to remind you that BPM II is related on the individual level to the time near the end of pregnancy when the fetus is no longer rocking blissfully on the waves of oceanic bliss but is trapped in an ever more confining womb. As the fetus grows in size, the suffering becomes greater; no doubt this is the source of the common-sense belief that growing has to involve suffering, for example, “No pain, no gain.” At any rate, the feelings are those of claustrophobia and “no exit.”
There is heavy non-agitated depression here, since there appears to be no hope, no change in the situation that would indicate a way out of the suffering. Indeed, this period continues practically right up to the time of birth, ending only when the cervix becomes dilated and, experientially speaking, there appears suddenly to be a “light at the end of the tunnel” and therefore hope.
Where the Hell We Get the Idea of Hell
However, up until that time there are feelings of being totally unempowered, completely in the hands of an entity—the womb—that imposes a horrifying reality that appears to be unending and eternal. Herein we have the psychological roots of notions of hell and Satan. Feelings associated with this state include despair, victimization, blame, and guilt.
“You’ll Wallow in Your Shit, and You’ll Think You’re Happy.” – Kurt Cobain, from the Song, “Sad”
As birth comes nearer, “fetal malnutrition” increases, since the neonate’s increasing size and weight press down on and constrict the blood vessels that carry blood to and from the placenta, when the mother is standing. The decreased blood supply means a reduction of life-giving oxygen as well as the buildup of toxins that would otherwise be taken away by a normal blood flow. So feelings of suffocation as well as skin irritation and other feelings of wallowing in waste matter—deemed poisonous placenta by deMause—increase. [Footnote 4]
“You’re Really in a Laundry Room.” – Kurt Cobain, from the Song, “Sad”
As I have said previously, deMause has found that these feelings exist to an extraordinary degree in a society and its leaders prior to its engaging in a war. Similarly, they precede, and obviously can be held to be accountable for, individual acts of violence—including everything from murder and rape to unfortunately all-too-common and ordinary spousal and child abuse in the household, and of course everything in between.
Bloody War, Bloody Birth — BPM III
BPM III is birth. Its social analogue is war or violent assault. Feelings that accompany this state on both the individual and societal level include rage and intense aggressiveness, all-encompassing struggle, and sexual excess.
Nothing’s Ever Good Enough, BPM IV
BPM IV relates to the time of actually coming out of the womb and the post-natal period. On the societal level it is the ending of a war.
“Busting Out All Over”
Feelings of expansiveness, release, exultation, coming finally out into the light and/or being “on top” of things, and victory are feelings associated with this matrix, whether in the individual birth or the collective war cycle.
As I said the societal analogue to BPM IV, or actually being born, is a war’s end. It is no coincidence that in triumph or peace, the two-finger peace symbol is used. What better way to signal we have come from constriction into openness, specifically through the vise of a mother’s cervix, out from between two legs. As John Lennon so aptly put it, using the peace sign frequently, “War is over (if we want it).”