October 3, 2020
Reflection re-enacts the process of excitation and carries the stimulus over into a series of images which, if the impetus is strong enough, are reproduced in some form of expression. This may take place directly, for instance in speech, or may appear in the form of abstract thought, dramatic representation, or ethical conduct; or again, in a scientific achievement or a work of art. (Jung, 1969, pp. 117, para 242)
This environment creates an imposing/darker mood. The stained-glass house looks better as it is reflected in the water. Its colors have better tones. I would describe the upper image as warm or pastel coloration. The image in the water looks more rich or deep. The night ambiance on the tree leaves certainly are autumn and its reflection transform them to a deeper time in the season.
The image exemplifies the importance of presentation. When I impose an environment of friendliness on an interaction, the situation looks quite different than if I create a hostile or unfriendly atmosphere. The “how” I reflect and “what” I reflect are not the entire picture, but only a moment in time.
In today’s world, the extremes are more present as they provide sensational “breaking news”. Both sides of the spectrum create drama as well as conspiracy theories to bring in more possibilities. Our power of discernment is essential to a healthy life. How much to listen to and how much to believe are just as important as what can I do to help the situation.
The news of President Trump testing positive for Covid-19 is ripe for a myriad of reflection. So much of what is said is dependent on what ‘they” want people to believe—which might be the truth or some version of it. So much of what is heard is the environment we place on what we hear. How we listen, the filters to agree or not, facilitate our experience of what we are told.
Reality and reflection are the Janus of our experience. They the two sides of the coin of our consciousness. However, we have no control over the so-called reality. We have a profound impact on the reflective process. Our consciousness is the reflective pool. It is through this pool that we have an individual perception of the reality. Do we use the pool of our ego and just focus on the manifest reality? Do we look through the pool of the Persona and get stuck in appearances? Do we look through the pool of our Shadow and perceives only the dark side of the self, others and the world around us? Do we look through the pool of our complexes and perceive the latent reality through the lens of our perfectionism, Narcissism, nationalism, paranoia or do we use the lens of altruism? Do we use the reflective pool of our soul to look at the core unity of the human condition underlying the minor superficial differences?
So, when all is said and done, the real question is what reflective pool do we use to perceive the latent mystery behind the manifest reality? Such a reflective pool gives us a glimpse into the mystery of our unique life and our special place in the universe with our own purpose. This purpose is our Dharma, our personal place in the larger universe, in the Brahman consciousness. Then we become a meaningful spoke on the cogwheel of the higher consciousness. It is an opportunity of many lifetimes. In the Hindu tradition it takes millions of reincarnations to achieve human consciousness with its unique reflective capacity to peek into the soul of the transcendent mystery. It transforms a young soul into an old soul worthy of merger with the divine. Hindus call this Moksha and Buddhists call this Nirvana. It is a lost opportunity of mega proportions to not invoke this most profound gift of human reflective capacity.
Let us pray that our President recovers fully from his grave illness. Let us pray as Americans and as global citizens. Then, if we are Democrats, let us ease him into retirement on November 3rd, 2020. If we are Republicans, let us work on making him a President for All Americans. That is the Way.
Points to Ponder:
What overlay is placed on the events you follow?
Do you have a particular spin you promote?
How does your presentation of events and the dynamics of your life intersect?
How available are you to change?
What is the nature of your reflective pool to discern outer reality?
Do you use your persona, ego, shadow, complexes, inferior function, and your personal myth to reflect on your outer reality?
How does outer reality look through the reflective pool of your soul?
Are you able to differentiate the ripples of transience on the pool of eternity?
If you get a glimpse of things eternal under the ripples of the surface ripples, what is such an experience like for you?
How would you respond to the current conflicts from that deeper place rather than the surface ripples?
Jung, C. G. (1969). The structure and dynamics of the psyche (2d ed. Vol. 8). Princeton, N.J.: Princeton University Press.
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 an 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.
© Ashok Bedi, M.D. and Robert BJ Jakala, PH. D