Through a Jungian Lens

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Defying the Need to Yield

with 8 comments

Country roads on the Canadian prairie often have signs that are used for target practice.  I can’t say as I exactly understand why this is a habit in the rural landscape of Canada.  But I guess that I don’t have to understand this, nor why people drive around with loaded rifles when it is against the law, and more importantly, a dangerous thing to do.

In looking at this “yield” sign, I have to wonder if it is a symbol, or just a sign.  If it is just a sign, why would any human respond to the sign with a gun and a bullet?   Perhaps for such a human, it isn’t either a sign or a symbol.  Perhaps it is just something easily seen so that one can site in one’s rifle scope.

I “know” that this is a sign meant to provide oncoming traffic with a sense of safety, allowing them to assume that some vehicle won’t suddenly appear crossing in front of them at an importune time resulting in an accident.  The sign asks those approaching it to slow down and only proceed when there is evidence that there is no oncoming traffic.  But the reality of this sign and so many like it, is that the “counsel” is often ignored.

At this time, the sign becomes a symbol.  For some, it is a symbol that can only be met with defiance and resistance.  Why should one “give way” for any others?  Is one not at the centre?  Should not others may way for us, should not others yield to us?  Somehow, I doubt that much of this resistance is deliberate or well thought out.  To me, it sounds and smells of “shadow.”

We do many things under the influence of a shadow fed up with the persona.  We cheat on expense accounts, we steal, kill and sleep with our neighbor’s wife.  And then we wonder what came over us.”  (Sharp, The Survival Papers:  Anatomy of a Midlife Crisis, p. 82)


8 Responses

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  1. you really make me ‘think’.

    abha iyengar

    July 7, 2010 at 8:04 am

    • 🙂 It makes me think as well. Abha.

      Robert G. Longpré

      July 8, 2010 at 9:59 am

  2. The question is, why are we fed up? Why?

    • Because we “know” that there is something more, something that needs us to become aware of in our personal searches for meaning, for soul.

      Robert G. Longpré

      July 8, 2010 at 10:00 am

  3. Great.

    Maybe yielding is part of the problem?



    July 8, 2010 at 10:49 am

    • Likely part of the problem AND part of the solution. I know, cryptic.

      Robert G. Longpré

      July 8, 2010 at 2:57 pm

  4. I was going to say the same thing. I know for myself I am searching for completion. I am also searching for a place to put the baggage attached to me that is not mine.

    • Maybe, in a way, no one carries baggage that is not “mine.” If it is baggage, then it must have become attached to something in the “self.” The key becomes to make this “hook” conscious and thus free the “self” from the baggage.

      Robert G. Longpré

      July 9, 2010 at 2:09 pm

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