The Eagle’s Eye View
In the Eye of the Storm
An individual response to the Global Crisis
April 12, 2020
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.
Intellect does, in fact, harm the soul when it dares to possess itself of the heritage of the spirit. It is in no way fitted to do this, because spirit is something higher than intellect in that it includes not only the latter, but the feelings as well. It is a direction, or principle of life that strives…. (Wilhelm, Jung, & Liu, 1962, p. 85)
Here is a moment where the intellect is insufficient. The feeling of an eagle taking flight is spectacular. I remember being captivated by its wingspan and strength. Language does not identify my experience as I witness it, because for that instant I participate. I fly too.
During this time of stay at home, I look to good memories to help me feel the vitality of my life. I keep a perspective that the wings of my soul will take me where I will do the most good. My intellect is inadequate to fully manage. I must rely on what is more than knowing. I notice the aroma of potentiality. Something is in the works. I know not what yet.
I project onto the eagle a curious spirit that says, “Time to discover more of my world.”
Our routine life in peacetime is the “Mousy Existence”. We scurry about on solid ground in a small circle of daily routines. This routine life is precious in its simplicity. However, there are times like these, when we are dislodged from our circle of comfort and have to rise above it to take an “Eagle’s Eye View” of our life and priorities. We must look at the bigger picture of grave concerns and responsibilities toward family and society.
While we must switch from a Mouse to an Eagle paradigm of existence and factor in the bigger picture, it has a SILVER LINING. While we must look at the bigger picture, we also get a peek at our life from a “Witness Perspective”. Normally we are the actors on the stage of life, but now we must witness it as the audience and the Director in the drama of our life. From this high altitude look at our life; we get a unique view of the past, the present and new possibilities in the future then from the ground level. This is something we would not normally do except for some who routinely stay Reflective about their life journey.
This is an opportunity to recalibrate our life. It offers a glimpse from up high at other paths from the mountain top not visible from the ground. Then this virus crisis also becomes an frame for exploring a different path. Each one of us can harvest this possibility of a major life change as we reflect on our life goals. In the shadow of such a crisis, the mundane becomes relative and what really matters to us gets crystallized. Do a reflection on this “Reset” of your life goals as glimpsed through the lens of this crisis. Journal your conclusion and a plan to implement it.
Some Points to Ponder
- How are you engaged in this stay at home time?
- How do you participate more fully in your journey?
- How do you discover more of yourself?
- What support nourishes you to manage uncertainty?
- How do you ground yourself?
- How do you stabilize balance when you are unsteady?
- As you reflect on your life goals, what feels less important in context of this crisis?
- As your previous life goals seem less important, what feels more relevant?
- Journal your new life goal(s).
- What is your plan to implement these new life goals in next 1 year,3 years and 5 years?
Photo taken In Alaska
Wilhelm, R., Jung, C. G., & Liu, H.-y. (1962). The secret of the golden flower, a Chinese book of life (New, rev. and augm. ed.). New York, Harcourt, Brace.
© Ashok Bedi, M.D. and Robert BJ Jakala, PH.D.