In the Eye of the Strom
An individual response to the Global Crisis
The Mystery of the Rainbow
Ashok Bedi, M.D., Jungian Psychoanalyst
Robert BJ Jakala PH.D., Jungian Psychotherapist
In a storm, the safest place is in the eye of the storm. My colleague BJ and I will share our daily reflections on this centering process from an Analytical perspective, sharing from the repertoire of our personal and professional experience. BJ is a psychologist and a photographer and will pick and image of the day that catches him in this collective crisis. I will amplify it from a Jungian Analytical perspective. We hope that this may offer you a baby step on the path to your own unique response to this chaos.
A symbol does not define or explain; it points beyond to a meaning that is darkly divined yet still beyond our grasp, and cannot be adequately expressed in the familiar words of our language. (Jung, 1960b, p. 336)
My intention this morning was to get out of the house early and walk in a local park. There were a few distractions at home that kept me from that early departure, so I thought I’d just walk in my neighborhood and go to the park this afternoon. I took this photo with my phone two blocks from my house. If I had gotten in my car and driven to the park, I would have missed this morning’s gift in the sky. Now, I am grateful to those little delays; a shift from being annoyed to feeling blessed. In yesterday’s blog, I noted the importance of what I bring into my home. Today I have this rainbow photo and memorable experience to carry home.
As I stood in admiration, I thought of how a rainbow has been a symbol of hope for thousands of years. It invites me to look at the vertical connection between earth and sky. It’s curve and colors are soothing. It feels like a moment to notice how things are just right and I admire nature’s wonder. It is visible yet unreachable. It is real and ethereal, apparent and mystical, scientifically explained yet promotes a sense of wonder. I see it reach from the sky down to the earth.
My imagination takes a magical moment break from the ordinary and sees that it is the tree at the end that is sending a signal up to the heavens in gratitude for the rain. It is reverse of the usual way to think of a rainbow.
Then, I imagine writing a children’s story about the raindrops in the clouds lining up by color as they jump to earth. Who wants to be blue? hurry up! Green your next! Yellow drops get in place! Orange quick, ahead of the red! Okay now everyone ready?
Slide down til you touch the ground.
I am at home in my office now and think about how the symbol of the rainbow is more than words can describe. The symbol gave me freedom to imagine more than I have ever considered the rainbow to be. I find myself needing to stay grounded in stay at home protection and find relief from the ordinary through the use of my imagination.
Detours are arranged by our Soul to lead us to our destination. When we are distracted or lost; we truly find the treasures of our Soul. Life’s detours are a gift of the Universe. We stumble upon the mystery of the unknown. What is concealed in the womb of the Psyche is revealed through these detours. We must be grateful for them.
The present Corona Virus crisis is one such detour. It has disrupted our business as usual. It has forced us to incubate our life to gestate the emergence of new priorities, not driven by materiality but interiority. While there are wonders out there in the world, the most precious treasures lie deep in our own soul waiting for us to discover them. Otherwise, the only way we can get a glimpse into our own inner mystery is to project it onto the outer world. In this crisis, we may find the gold at the end of the rainbow; and the gold is in US.
Some points to ponder:
What symbols are active in your life?
What intrigues you about You when you are alone?
What is your favorite memory of a rainbow?
How did you feel about You when you were witnessing the rainbow?
What does the virus symbolize? How do you interpret it?
What part of you life feels like a Virus?
How does this inner virus distract you from your path and goals?
What are your healthy coping mechanisms?
What methods did you use in your life when you were confronted by this kind of crisis in your past?
Photo taken in Los Angeles California
Jung, C. G. (1960b). The structure and dynamics of the psyche. New York: Pantheon Books.