Through a Jungian Lens

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Different Perceptions of the Same Objective Reality

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I have to admit to having a bit of fun with this image.  As I was tweaking the original photo, I got curious as to what it would look life if . . .  And, this was the result.  There is an objective reality behind this dream-like image.  So, what was I looking for?  Well, I really don’t know the answer.  I was simply letting the process happen with no conscious sense of manipulating the process in order to get a desired result.

Often we end up in stress situations because we are too intent in trying to control all of the variables and the end result.  One gets to see this in any number of daily situations involving small things, almost inconsequential things.  For example, one might get upset because another person didn’t act in a certain manner, one in which the expectation was unspoken.  On closer examination, the action desired and the action performed would achieve the same result.  So why the stress?  It comes down to issues of control, or should I say, not having control.

Insecurity manifests itself in extra efforts towards control – controlling the environment by making sure that things in one’s life are placed just so; controlling one’s own actions by establishing routines; attempts to control others in the workplace or at home regardless of one’s real position of authority.  In our modern world this is most easily seen in the world of raising children.  Parents and teachers and coaches all work with their own separate agendas to control the direction of growth of young people.  Little room is given to children just to be.  As a result, when non-programmed moments do appear children complain of being bored.  And when their psyche reaches the point of overload distraction emerges which only sends those seeking to control the children to invoke punishments, rewards or medications to get the children back on track.  One is left wondering what it is that the adults are worried will result if structure and control are relaxed.

Trying to control others and/or oneself doesn’t eliminate the stuff that is pushed back or even denied.  The stuff just retreats unconsciously into the shadows where it waits for a crack so that it can come to the surface unconsciously sabotaging the ego’s efforts and causing panic and renewed efforts of control.  It would have been much better to nurture the curiousity that is natural in children and even in adults.  When control is loosened consciously, one is able to grow in observing and valuing what emerges from the depths.  Oh, by the way, this is the original photo image.  Objectively the contents are unchanged.  Only the perception has changed, a different way of looking at the same objective reality.


Written by Robert G. Longpré

August 8, 2011 at 8:44 am

2 Responses

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  1. Since you open this post with a comment on image and image manipulation, how does this quote from Geigerich strike you?

    It is a mistake to give primacy to the image. The images are results. Logically, even if not temporally, the act comes first. It is the condition of the possibility of images. Without it, there would not have been any image, any consciousness, any culture.
    Wolfgang Geigerich: Soul-Violence, 212

    John Ferric

    August 9, 2011 at 12:41 pm

    • Light and shadow exist regardless of a human’s attempts at making images. What one sees is an image rendered by the brain in animals and in humans. Objective reality exists whether or not one makes an image of that reality. What is seen is there in space, time and place. The image I our you or any animate being constructs is a representation of what it is that is there in time, space and place whether it is a human, a rock or a cloud passing by in the sky. The creation of an image is an act of a conscious being, of that there is no doubt. And each conscious being will see something different because of different levels of individual consciousness that is also filtered by a personal shadow and complexes.

      Great addition to the dialogue with this quote, John. 🙂


      August 9, 2011 at 4:07 pm

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