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Holy Fools in History and Eternity
One of the greatest character archetypes in the history of literature has to be the holy (or sometimes unholy) fool. What is so absolutely strange about the holy fool is that they are said not to exist. Typically they appear in stories that have to do with some Christ figure who is so perfect among the other characters that he is blinded by that perfection in a way. His beautiful, and often romantic vision of virtue, love, and peace among people so central to his character causes the other, more realistic characters to despise him and either seek to manipulate the holy fool or kill the holy fool because of his convictions.
The differentiating factor of these characters is their sense of not belonging in the universe because of they were born into. That the act of killing them off is all at once diabolical but cosmically necessary. They are…
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Strange alliances are being formed after the Paris attacks. An interesting turn of events is the war declared on twitter by Anonymous.
Three days later Anonymous is teaching people how to hack ISIS and has published guides on how to do it. This is a new phase in avenging strategy. Not too long ago wars were declared by heads of state and fought by nations. ISIS initiated war in order to create a nation, and recognizes no borders or boundaries in their avenging. The avenger archetype has always existed in history. I sometimes feel a bit of avenger at work in my personality because I am highly sensitive to injustice. I do indulge in both self righteousness and indignant feelings on behalf of all mistreated sentient beings.
The new world of avenging made available through hacking, retweeting, and blogging has opened up many healthy avenging options that do not involve violence or terrorism. Now it is possible to use hashtags like #OpParis to openly attack enemies. Digital trash talk and taunting will continue. I wonder how much effect this digital line of attack will cause. Since social media has been used so well to radicalize new fighters it makes a lot of sense to me to work to shut down those propaganda opportunities. Since both groups are avengers without borders they are well pitted against each other. It is a heavyweight fight. I plan to hide, watch and retweet for the side of justice because I am more of a poet than an avenger. Perhaps I will dedicate some poetry to #OpParis to show my support. How do you view this new style of warfare, gentle reader? It has the feel of a video game, but it is completely real.
The season of scare is upon us as the month of Halloween arrives. Vampires are popular mythical characters used in costuming, entertaining, and decor during this season. The classic tale of Dracula is the famous story of a vampire most people know and think of when drawing up this archetype. The vampire returns to drain the life from his prey each night until it is depleted.
In a larger sense the vampire can represent the dynamic present in some couples (or even nations). One partner can sustain the psychic or material needs of the other by allowing themselves to be drained. Today this can be seen outwardly in financial situations. Neediness is the bond between the two, and survival of the couple depends on an unspoken and unhealthy agreement. Financial codependence does not resemble sharing. It more closely parodies a horror flick.
The positive result of an encounter with the vampire archetype is an awareness that some person or entity can suck the living daylights out of your soul. The shadow vampire sucks energy from others to maintain approval. Once you recognize this character in yourself and others you can take appropriate steps to protect your own energy. You will then be able to perceive your own dependencies in a new light. Once the light of day has been shed on the entire drama it can be laid to rest.
Learning about archetypes has taught me to look at life more closely, and free myself of some old restrictive self images. We all play different parts in our own lives. As we age our desires naturally change and our personalities become more complex. In our history we can discern times when one role has been the dominant one, giving way to another as time passed. Some of us never outgrow our rebel, and some are artists whose latent talent is not discovered until a ripe old age. We all have within our psyches a child, a victim, a saboteur, and a prostitute that are brought to the spotlight by different circumstances.
Plato called this phenomena forms. Carl Jung coined the phrase and defined basic archetypes. He taught that these pure images arise in dreams and in reality as a result of the collective consciousness. Carolyn Myss has evolved the work to include many more archetypes, and has created books, cards, and courses to teach the concepts. It is a powerful practice to draw a timeline of your own life and remember when you encountered strong archetypes in yourself and other people, and how that may have been repeated. All religions use archetypes to teach lessons because they are memorable. The archetype in my first house is the hedonist. When that hedonist is good she is very very good, and when she is bad she is horrid. Such is the case with all of these eternal and universal roles. They have both a light and a dark side. The possibilities are endless. Do you have a strong dominant role you have played throughout your life?
The Avenger character is a masked marvel. Crusades for righteousness and fairness are the territory of this archetype. Comic book characters and super heroes use the avenger character to tell stories about balancing the scales of justice . The obvious shadow attribute the avenger can possess is the willingness to use violence to defend a cause. Frequently we see the misguided avenger on the loose; That is called the loose cannon because the lack of control is too obvious. They may be warriors or politicians, but their primary motive is to represent causes for the sake of others. They are aggressive.
Religious zealots in history have often convinced others to seek revenge or fight a holy war. Terrorism and family feuds are examples of avengers gone bad. When nations or political factions square off to avenge some perceived wrong this is the archetype in control. When the Republicans and the Democrats cut off all their noses to spite all their faces they are doing it because they believe they are finding vengeance. They tell the taxpayers they are fighting for us, but they are isolated in their own cartoon, unaware of the roles they play in our big drama. They fight because they feel entitled, and because we have allowed them to become so extreme. Their capes and masks must be recalled.
The trickster is a character popular in many ancient mythical stories. This archetype pranks us and fools us in various ways. Like all of the Sacred Contracts, our interactions with this particular role will continue until we finally recognize the trick. The joke may be on us, or we may be the joker in the case. Good natured pranking can be done in a kind spirit; Often the dark side of the trickster misleads and harms the easily duped. When the joke is recognized as a dark misdeed the trickster is usually nowhere to be found.
I can see a pattern in my life of believing in financial tricksters. I did not carefully identify or assess risk to my own finances in my youth. I was a hedonist on a roll with no fear of failure. Even now when I believe I have done careful due diligence and consideration I am too lenient and trusting of others. While I don’t think anyone has been out to get me financially, I could have been surrounded with more trustworthy and helpful folks in my early years. The very good news is that I have become more cautious. I investigate potential partnerships and investments with much more vigor than I did in the past. I have some residual financial damage that keeps me vigilant today for any possible tricksters at work in my life. I hope I am all done with them. I can’t afford to be around them. If you have been tricked by tricksters were they stealing love, money, security, or all of the above?
What kind of power does an exorcist have? Technically Catholic priests are in the business of exorcism, but in day to day life some people play the role of the exorcist to friends or family. I personally do not have much experience with this archetype, but we all recently witnessed a bookkeeper in a school in Georgia display extraordinary ability to drain the evil out of a situation. Antoinette Tuff found the strength to talk down a deranged gunman with 500 rounds of ammunition. Later in an interview she told the 911 dispatcher with whom she had been on the phone that she had been terrified. She called the courage to act the grace of God. I imagine that priest or not, it is always the grace of God that provides the purging of evil. Do you have any experience with exorcist archetypes?
The catalyst archetype is rare in human personalities. Intuition plays a key role in the transformative power of this person. Intense scrutiny and focus is the special realm of the human catalyst. Rebels can be catalysts, but there are a few different kinds. The American Heritage Dictionary defines the word:
To modify or increase rate of reaction without being consumed is no small feat. Most folks who go out intentionally to make big change in the world burn out and are consumed in the process. I am not such a person. I am a true catalyst. My view is basically not in line with the views of those who surround me; often it is diametrically opposed. Infiltration is the key to changing anything. The only time I sincerely burned out and quit as an agent of change was when I infiltrated the VA as a volunteer to improve health care for vets. That was just too much for me. My specialty as a catalyst is as a mendacity meter. People lie all the time, and I am very sensitive to the common practice. I am gifted with a very accurate sensor that detects dishonesty of all kinds. This is neither a blessing nor a curse. It is my unique talent that I am somehow obligated to use for the betterment of mankind. We catalysts have a moral obligation to avoid snark because, tempting as it may be, outing people is not usually beneficial to anyone.
People lie for many reasons. I find that usually they fail to tell the truth because they have no knowledge or training in the truth. If brainwashing works, then the victim believes what has been inculcated. As I review my life I clearly notice a strong tendency to spy/rebel/teach, as a cycle. I love infiltration for no reason:I enjoy the feeling of being a foreign object in a strange culture, incognito…I almost never go for status quo ….and I fill my teaching with subversive messages I hope will be released into the students’ brains as a constant reminder to do due diligence and individuate. I have a mission to tell the truth, but in a helpful way. Not everything that is true needs to be said, but when it does I am ready to say it. This blog is my channel to put this gift to the highest and best use. Thanks to all the gentle readers who give me this opportunity.
Healers have obstacles to overcome in learning to practice their arts. Today many must endure heavy hazing in the hospital residency period to become an MD. The apparent cruelty is set up to show the prospect what to expect when entering a medical career. Overworked and tired, those who survive will become the next generation of MD’s. The training may not include any advise on self care or setting a healthy example. Empathy is not taught, but acquired. The mythical Chrion represents the fortitude and wisdom required to heal the bodies or souls of others. The positive healer uses energy and talents wisely to benefit everyone. The shadow healer harms others, sometimes unwittingly. The present system of health care in the United States qualifies, in my opinion, as a wounded healer that has yet to acquire empathy for the patient.
If you have attended an elementary school you have been involved in gossip. Private information spreading is power for the gossip. It can have two distinct patterns running at the same time. Damaging or false information may be spread as well as flattering or promotional stories. This is a member of the creative family and can be considered to be artful and expressive. Dr. Phil and his ilk fit into this category. Networking can be a positive form of gossip designed to help others. To make the best of your own gossip within notice the news you spread and why you do it. To a certain extent we all make our own PR as well as our own self image. We spotlight or eliminate part of the story for effect, even if we are unconscious of it, and even in our memories.
How can the gossip teach us to respect the feelings of others? If you observe your own communication carefully you can spot trends. The shadow gossip my bring you news of all kinds, but it is not your job to share it. I know plenty of people who do not watch cable TV but are still influenced to believe what they are told, read, or hear. Due diligence is your friend when it comes to discernment and discretion. Know what you mean to say and why.