Through a Jungian Lens

See new site URL –

The Fascist Mind Within

with 2 comments

Down faint trails in late afternoon

I have to thank my wife for this photo of me walking down a new trail we found in the back country on the island of Cebu, Philippines. We are both curious about new places, seeing what is behind the public face that is presented along the coasts near villas and resorts or on the tourist trails as advertised in travel guides.

Heading down these hidden trails is as much of an adventure of discovery of the world behind the scenes as it is about a discovery of ourselves in relation to each other in the face of what we experience together as we wander and talk about what we see. What is quite amazing is how we see different things in the same scenes.  As we talk about what we see, we begin to see the world through the lens of the other. The mind, in relationship, becomes open to new possibilities, to different views. It is this willingness to be open to other possibilities that animates a relationship, that keeps an eternal wonder and mystery of other.

Sadly, much of the world is not so open and hides behind closed minds, unwilling to accept any other possibility.  James Hollis refers to this mind set as a fascist mind.

Thus the fascist mind – which is always with us, in whatever culture, waiting to control what you or I might experience for ourselves. Why? Because it makes them uncomfortable! Today they show up on school boards and try to remove books that challenge their antiquarian, three-story universe. Today the seek to impose creationist dogma as science, in the name of free inquiry, of course . . . they deny the reality of evolutionary process even as their bodies mutate and evolve within their short lifetimes in reaction to antibiotics and environmental toxins . . . they show up labeling dissent, different views, and sincere questions as unpatriotic and disloyal . . . the fascist mentality occurs whenever ambiguity occurs . . . they want, need, to “save the appearances,” deny the discrepancy, patch over contradiction, and make all things fall within their control.” (Hollis, What Matters Most, p. 30)

Hollis is talking about a segment of society that somehow has the reins in the modern Western world. But he could just as easily been talking about each and every one of us. Each of us wants control, consciously and unconsciously. Like the “moral right” in modern society, we deny things that contradict whatever it is that we hold to be true. It seems that it is too much to hold the mind open for things that come from the opposite, the polar regions of being and knowing. How do we suspend what we “know” to be true and actually hear what others “know” to be true?

Though I am not empowered by the moral right of the modern world, I also have a fascist mind that sabotages my journey of individuation, my attempts at going behind the scenes to find out other answers, other ways of being my self.



2 Responses

Subscribe to comments with RSS.

  1. Dear Robert,
    Thank you for this Post that keeps me alert with the examples that you mentioned.
    These examples are so common that I am due to ignore/forget them and of course my denial and the nature of laziness, plays a most important role.

    I can write about this awareness, because I am retired, and no longer squeezed in the stressful circumstances of the daily life of western society.
    So I can understand that one can “overlook” things when one is fully obsessed by the modern Western Society – in order to survive.

    It is fascinating to observe that the Collective caused a shockwave and leaves many people in sheer bewilderment.
    There is a scream for changes, but it seems that there is no specific Collective idea of what to change.

    For now, we all want changes as long as these changes occur on behalf of somebody else and not to us.

    I think this Chaos is a good sign, because they are the stirs of Aquarius.

    The (downing of the) “Age of Aquarius” was written in 1967 – 44 years ago.
    Aquarius, the symbol of the Water Bearer who nourishes his fellow human being by sharing his water.

    When I look at myself and the society around me I think that there is a hell of a lot to happen before we only can start with the principals of the Aquarian Age.
    But the stirs are there and I am sure that an earthquake will finally follow

    Opa Bear

    November 28, 2011 at 10:42 pm

    • Yes, we all want change, but at the expense of others, not ourselves. Everyone else should change and make our lives better in the process – modern man thinking.


      December 4, 2011 at 11:53 am

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: