It is difficult to sustain deep and loving relationships if we are split and hurting inside. Using Jung's psychology, this workshop looks at how our inner psyches are shaped by our own types, the imprints of our parents, and cultural stereotypes. It explores the powerful projections out of the unconscious that are found in falling in love, marriage, and community life. It examines the critical role of the fourth, or least developed function, mid-life decisions, and the dynamism of psychic energy, all with an eye to seeing how we can heal ourselves and grow closer to each other.
This video is the second day of a 2-day conference. The first day is Jungian Type Recognition & Relationships
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Jim: Yesterday we were talking about type recognition as a skill of actually seeing that leads us to type tolerance. Type recognition is types taken interpersonally. I see what type you are, you see what type I am, and thats where it stays. But it is just one half to types taken intrapersonally, which means that we possess in ourselves these different dimensions. In the final analysis you cannot separate types taken interpersonally from types taken intrapersonally. There is no way to separate our skills of dealing with other people from our skills with dealing with our own inner transformation. I hope that emerge as we go on and become clearer that we need to deal with both aspects.
If the goal yesterday was a certain kind of type tolerance, if we start from there we have to say that tolerance is not enough. Tyra will give you a few examples of how that works.
Tyra: I think I would like to give a few examples with married couples because thats where it rubs people the hardest. You are committed to one another, you have years and years of being together, so type differences fast become not just a theory, but very practical. If you have a boss, you can leave him during the weekend. If you are in a community you can find yourself switched someplace else sometimes, but in a marriage it is day in and day out.
Lets suppose if the man is an extraverted thinking type, and the woman is an introverted feeling type. Well, if he has his plan, and he knows what is going to happen today and tomorrow and next year, the introverted feeling type is supposed to fall into this plan. She is supposed to go with it. If he decides that she cannot drive the car alone because the car might break down, and that he has to be with her for every trip, and she wants to go and do a church activity, and he doesnt want to go, then whats going to happen? She is going to have to put away her own desires, her own feelings, her own need for fellowship with other people, and conform to that plan. If she says that she wants to go to her church activity, and if he doesnt want to go she is going to go anyway, well, then you start having war.
Another example. Say a guy is an extraverted intuitive type, and the woman is an introverted sensation type. He has intuitions, and if she is included in that intuition, then she gets a lot of attention from him, but if he has an intuition that doesnt involve her, which usually happens after just a little while because an intuitive type is going to have intuitions all the time, so if it doesnt include her, he is going to be off doing his thing, and she is going to be feeling left out. This is not a happy situation.
Another example. If she is an extraverted feeling type, and she loves to be with people, she needs to be with people, its like eating and drinking to her, she gets a real feeling of life being with people, and he wants to be home reading his book, or doing the accounts, or whatever he is doing, he doesnt want to be involved in that, then thats going to be a real problem.
We had a friend who was an extraverted intuitive type, and we found that he would come over and he would talk to us, and he would be really enthusiastic because we had a plan together, we were going to be doing something, when he changed his intuition and he was off doing something else, we didnt see him for weeks. And then we would come around in his circle again, and all of a sudden we would be getting all this attention. What do you do?
Its not enough just to say well, hes like that. I understand what he is like. He is an extraverted intuitive type, and so I can see where he is coming from. I have that tolerance. But to have to live with somebody like that without making compromises or without growth, without inner development, whats going to happen?
Jim: What we are going to do is talk about this kind of what it means to go on this inner journey. Ill make an introverted intuitive type (on the blackboard) here. The journey for any type follows the same pattern. Its just that the functions are different because of our individuality, and if we start, for example, when we are young like this, having this much consciousness, somehow we have to come and deal with the question of the third function, and we have to deal with the question of the fourth function, and the question of what Jung calls the self. If we do that, we discover a new capacity to relate to other people in a way that we can never do if we consider that our personality really is just this instead of the whole thing. So Jung says it is like a journey to wholeness, or a journey to individuation. The real issue is how can we do this if this part of the personality is genuinely unconscious? We dont know what it is. How can we do something we dont know? Again, we go back to that video with Roy and Ellen. They are there. They know the differences. They are trying to be tolerant, but it is not enough. They have to figure out a way to become more, but the biggest obstacle is that this "more" is so unconscious that we believe it doesnt even exist. We will say, "We are experts about ourselves. Who knows me better than myself? Ive spent my whole life with myself, and I am the expert." We are experts about this, but we are not experts about whole vast dimensions of our personality that we have not yet encountered. This is the challenge that we face on this journey to individuation. So the question is, how do we go and find ways to discover this? It is like exploring an unknown land. How do we do it? Tyra can give us a few ideas of some of the major techniques.
Tyra: I want to go back to the beginning of our relationship when we were in the bird sanctuary, and he was talking about the anima and animus, and introversion and extraversion. Then I had the dream, but when I had the dream, it was finally a first clue into the other half of myself. It was giving me a picture of my other half. So it was not like I had to go to a book and look it up, or someones going to tell me. Since Im the expert of my conscious part, I also have expertise coming about my unconscious part through the dreams. In the dream I am on the second floor, and I am looking down into the first floor in another building, which shows that my unconscious, if thats the other building, and the first floor is a less conscious part of me, and Im not even in the same building. This is happening apart from me. In analyzing that dream, I thought about the girl who was painting the picture. She was a little younger than I was, I didnt think much of her, but looking back, she, too, was an introvert, she, too, had blue eyes like I do and like the men do, and I always thought she was kind of meek and she didnt have much to say, but obviously the dream is telling me that she, my shadow self, had a lot to say, and Id better pay attention to her, and to my other part. When she is painting the picture of the men, she is showing me graphically that this is my third function, this is my thinking function. Its not nearly as developed as my feeling and my intuition, but here it is, it is very much alive. Those eyes are alive. So thats how we began. I wrote a whole dream series, and I would take images and analyze them, not only from what part they might have in my psyche, but what feelings I might have for these particular people.
Another important illustration is, Jim would ask me, "What is your first memory?" This is at the very beginning of our relationship. What is your first memory? Well, who pays any attention to that? Thats just in your childhood, but in trying to remember that, I remembered that first memory because it had a lot of emotion. The memory was about my parents fighting, so in remembering that, it showed the split between my extraverted mother and my introverted father, the thinking and the feeling. This had a lot of emotion for me, so what I had to do with that first memory and with a lot of other memories all along was, I took that memory, and I not only conceptualized it oh, yes, this happened what did I feel when I had that memory? And so I would actually feel it as if it were happening right now. And I would be filled with emotion.
I think a better example is when I was a teenager, and there I was, ripping apart a ping pong ball to shreds. I would feel that feeling, and I am at this moment now being rejected by the group, and I am alone and isolated, and I would start to cry. And then Jim said, "Now I want you to feel that memory again. Go through it again." And so I would feel it again, and there I was, rejected and alone again. Then he said, "Now, feel it again." So after about four or five or six times of feeling this particular situation, the emotions would die down. I think thats important. I think a lot of analysis is up here, but if you dont get your gut involved, you may understand intellectually what you are, but you are not feeling deep down what you are.
After the emotions were spent, then I realized that I was the introvert in the situation it was an extroverted situation and from there I could make a judgment. Then he would say, "How do you feel about your mother?" All these feelings would come out good, bad and indifferent. And then I would have to take specific situations that happened in my past, and feel what it was like to be that little kid, and having an extraverted mother trying to put me in the center of things, or "You will outgrow this, dear. You will pay attention to clothes, you will be better in groups." But I had to go over and over and over and over these situations. Then he would say, "How do you feel about your father?" I considered myself a normal person. I considered that Id had a normal childhood, I could hold down a job, I had friends, I had an apartment, I knew how to manage money more or less. Nothing unusual about me, I didnt think, but when Jim started asking me these questions, all these feelings that had been down there and not paid attention to were beginning to come up. I spent about nine months in tears, and because of that, when we finally got married and we started our own life, I did not have a lot of unresolved emotional issues that I would project on him, that it was his fault because such and such was happening. And he was doing the same parallel work.
I think thats one of the major reasons why we started this conference saying, be very careful when you start doing this because your head says, yes, I would like to understand myself, but once you start tapping in those really deep feelings and those emotional experiences as a child, you are beginning to unleash the collective unconscious, not just your personal unconscious, and it can be really terrifying. Luckily we had each other. You talk about an introvert doing it alone. I never would have even dreamed that I could do this certainly not alone but we helped to balance each other out.
So you have your memories, and you have your dreams, you have moments of high feeling intensity. What is something that really got to you? What do you remember that had a special significance, good or bad? One of the situations with the fourth function, your least developed function, yesterday I talked about some of the horrible things like my feeling about going to the laundromat, but the fourth function also has a numinosity, something so special that it draws you and you are attracted to it.
One example, since sensation is my fourth function, I am totally fascinated with colors. When I was about 21 someone gave me an oil painting set, complete with the little palette and the brushes, and the turpentine and linseed oil, and about 12 tubes of oil paint. If you were a primary sensator, I think the tubes would have been gone in about three or four months, depending on what you were interested in doing. What I would do is, I would take a tube, and I would very carefully open it, and squeeze it a little, and just gaze at the color. This was enough. Then I would put the tube top back on, and then put it back in the box. I carried that box with me for 20 years. I did do a painting when I was pregnant with my first child, and thats the first time that I actually did something.
So all I can say is, this is the general outline of the kind of things that go on in getting in touch with your other side. In the meantime, I didnt have to require Jim to be my other side. I was getting messages every night. If I paid attention and said, "Tonight I would like a dream and I really want to remember it and I want to write it down," once I wrote it down, I had a letter from my unconscious. I had something concrete that only I was creating, and that could then be used to study, to feel, to think, to figure out where I came from and what I have to do with myself.
Jim: How do we get to understand the unconscious? Well, we have to listen to the unconscious. Thats why dreams are so important in Jungs psychology or Freuds, or that kind of thing, because they are going to give us the picture. Also, the other things that Tyra was mentioning, you can do the same thing with fantasies like habitual or even spontaneous day dreams we have. Oftentimes because they are not under rigid conscious control, those can be analyzed in that same way as a dream could be. Then there are memories, and moments of high feeling intensity, which are actual events. Why are they so important? We are not choosing them precisely because they are important in themselves, but because somehow the energy from the unconscious has come out and grabbed onto them, so when you touch on one of those, you feel, "This happened to me." Why does this little event stick in my mind after 20 years, and it is not a big event in itself.
This is where we start from (blackboard), and this is our conscious personality with either introversion or extraversion, and probably two functions, or part of a third. What we want to do is figure out how to explore this unconscious region. The biggest problem that faces us right off is to believe that this actually exists. In theory we say, this is true. We must have an unconscious, but in practice we dont really believe it because we are naturally experts about who we are, and therefore whatever we dont know after all these years doesnt seem like it is real. So thats the first hurdle. Thats why, when Tyra had her dream, that was our way of seeing that this other dimension was real, so thats why it was important to us.
So we ended up this morning talking about how ways to do it are dreams, these memories and moments of high feeling intensity, fantasies, and Philip pointed out to me that I hadnt put down projections, which simply means that in our diagram of the married couple, if they could realize that what they were seeing at the beginning of their relationship was actually a projection out of their own unconscious, then they would have a very good picture of what their own unconscious is like. Or put in another way, if the man could realize that that woman actually is what his unconscious is like, then he would really have to stop. Instead of feeling, how different she is, like Roy and Ellen were doing, how different we are from each other and how, when they say how different they are from each other, they are saying, in fact, how different they are in consciousness from their unconscious side. Roy is already married to Ellen in the sense of in his inner psyche, thats what his inner psyche is like. But you would have to work very hard for any one of us to believe that that is true. How can you really think, especially when your marriage starts to have problems, that your side, in these marriage of opposites, is like that person who you are now not getting along with. Thats a lot to handle. However, if they could understand projection in that sense, they would have a very powerful way of looking at this kind of thing.
What we really want to do is, imagine we are lying on the table in the hospital, and they have a special X-ray machine that will X-ray our psyches, and not just our bodies, and so they put us on the machine, and we end up looking like this, and then there is this whole shadowy dark side. If they could that, then we would say, "Wow. What is that dark side?" And we would believe that it exists.
One night Tom has a dream. In the dream he is in the back seat of a car, and the driver is his boss he had during his summer job, and in the front seat with the boss is Toms girlfriend. Tom has this feeling in the dream that sometimes his girlfriend is turning around and talking with him, and being very nice to him, but other times she is up in the front seat with the driver, seeming to flirt with the driver a little bit. So Tom wakes up feeling pulled. He feels apprehensive, but since he is beginning to know what his own type is, he can frame a typological explanation. In that explanation, the dream is showing that in the unconscious someone is in charge, not Tom, himself. Hes not driving the car, and the person who is driving it is someone that Tom has associations of being kind of forceful and extraverted and powerful and in charge of a lot of extraverted thinking and sensation. It is really Toms shadow figure. Now this shadow figure, by compensation in the dream, is in charge, and Toms feelings, represented by his girlfriend, is partly being attracted to consciousness, and partly being attracted to the sensation function and to the unconscious. So Tom, if he could develop the insight enough, would see how it is through his function of feeling, which is his third function, that there is where the point of development is. Thats where the line divides his psyche into conscious and unconscious. So really, that dream is giving Tom a picture, not only of his consciousness, but his unconscious, and dreams often do that if we pay attention to them and look at them carefully.
Thats one. Fantasy. Tom has the recurring daydream where hes in this airplane that crashes out in the mountains. Among the passengers there is this beautiful girl. Tom doesnt know how to approach her, but because Tom knows all about how to do survival things, then she is attracted to him, and he develops a relationship with her. But then one day he decides, "Well, I am going to look at this fantasy from the point of view of trying to make it work as an X-ray for me of what my psyche is like. He begins to see that the airplane is often associated with the intuitive function. Intuiters sort of like to fly off in different directions. Well, in the fantasy, the airplane is crashed. That means that the psyche is really trying to say that that kind of adaptation is too limited. It has to be done away with. So Tom really has to deal with the issues both of his feeling, represented by the girl, and his sensation, represented by the part of the fantasy that has to do with all these skills that he would like to have of how to build a little shelter, and how to get food, and all these things. They all represent his other undeveloped side. Thats just two ways.
Third way. Tom has a moment of what we are calling high feeling intensity. He is reading a magazine, and then he sees a little anecdote in the magazine written by a man who had been in a mental hospital for 30 years, and this man says, "Well, I had one of my peak moments in the mental hospital when I won an argument with one of the staff members in the hospital about how to hyphenate a word. And this upsets Tom, and he tried to think of why he got upset. It turned out that this seemed to Tom to be a very trivial kind of event, that one of your greatest memories over a course of 30 years would be winning an argument on how to hyphenate one word. So Tom could realize that the mental patient sort of represented his own undeveloped regressive side, and Tom was afraid of his other side because his other side Tom loved freedom, like many intuiters do that he would get away and be free and do whatever he wanted and never be tied down, and the anecdote pictured a man who was imprisoned, entrapped in a what seemed a meaningless existence, and so Tom reacted strongly because he had those unconscious fears that he could be trapped.
These are just simple examples of trying to get different messages from the unconscious, and I am sure that all of you could do better than this in coming up with good examples, and I am going to give you a chance to do that. What I would like you to try to do is, we are going to get together in little groups of four again, and try to find an example of some dream, or moment of high feeling intensity, or projection, or fantasy that you could say somehow illustrates a kind of message coming out of the unconscious. Try to do that because thats the only way we are going to get it out of the level of what seems the abstract, and into the level of experience.
Woman: Ill share an experience of something that happened as recently as last week. I am sure most of you have heard about John Thompson who lost his arms. Hes from North Dakota, and the heroic efforts that he made to survive. Anyway, he was invited to sing the "Star-Spangled Banner" about a week ago, and I didnt watch the game so I didnt see him, but he has been on our campus, and the next morning they were playing this on the radio while they were reporting the sports, and he sang the "Star-Spangled Banner," and I just bawled. I was doing my hair, and just crying away. I was trying to figure out why that made such an impact, and I was telling the people at breakfast that day, and they asked why it made such an impact on me that I would be responding this way. The only thing I could think of was, when I was 9 years old my older sister had a tractor accident, and she was paralyzed from the waist down, and she made the best of her handicap. That whole thing, as I look on it now, I dont think I ever worked through the feelings that I had at that time of the loss that she and our family experienced with her handicap, and how that effects the way I relate to people today who have handicaps.
Jim: Here is a memory (blackboard) and around it has collected this great cloud of energy, and the point Tyra was trying to make before is, we can objectively remember the memory, but we dont tie in to all the energy, and so we can sit there and kind of do a little autobiography, and all our memories come by, but we are not really talking about that because this energy is the very energy that needs to be unleashed to transform the psyche. You need a way to get to the energy if it is actually connected to that particular memory. We may remember our mother or our father, or whoever, but we just sort of dont connect with sometimes the tremendous amount of energy that is gathered around those figures.
There is an interesting exercise we can carry out. Suppose we have discovered our own type. Lets say it is introverted intuition. Well, this person is born this particular type but, here is the situation. Here are his parents. Lets imagine that one of them is an introvert and the other is an extravert. What happens from the moment of conception is that your natural type is like clay and immediately gets pushed and shoved and overlain with these influences coming from the parents. For example, lets suppose this is our friend, Tom, and Toms father is an extraverted sensation type. That would make him the opposite to Tom. And his mother is an introverted intuitive feeling type. OK. Toms chore is to somehow get in touch with his feeling and with his sensation. Thats going to be a hard job in any circumstances, but suppose his parents are not getting along because they are too opposite. They are like Roy and Ellen. They are going back and forth. Then, part of Toms psyche is going to be identified with his mother, and maybe part with his father, and every time his parents have a fight, it is going to be like pulling him apart and making it harder for the day later on when he is going to try to get in touch with the rest of his own personality.
Tyra: As an introvert, and as an intuiter, my mother was an extravert, and she was a feeler-sensator type, and my father was an introverted thinking type, and when they fought, and they would fight regularly, my mother would try to get me on her side from the feelings, and I would be alienated from my father who was the introvert. He wasnt apt to do a lot of talking, anyway, and so when it came time for me to try to find my thinking function, which was down there, I had a hard time because my mother didnt have a good relationship with my father, which is to say, the feeling function did not have a good relationship with the thinking function, and so when I tried to get a relationship with my own thinking function, there were a lot of handicaps from the parental background. And even if we are not brought up by our own parents, whoever we are being brought up with, they are still going to exert their influence they cant help it on us, as children. I would have a dream where first I would be way down in the basement, and there would be these little dwarf men running around, and as I went up the stairs, I would meet a young boy, and then there would be grown men, and then there would be a priest. That was a picture of what my thinking function way down here was like, which had been cut off. It had the primitive part, and as it got closer to my consciousness it would become spiritualized. Priests often came into my dreams because if I dreamed about a priest, that was the safe animus. A priest couldnt be a threat to me the way a regular man could be because he was spiritualized. He was celibate, and safe in the church, and so I could form a relationship with a priest figure in a way that was not compatible from my own childhood.
Of course, men have the same problem where they might fantasize about the Polynesian woman on an island. Here is the feeling down here (blackboard), and this part, which is closer to sensation and more out of control is very attractive, but then there is Mary, or Sister so-and-so, who is the spiritualized anima, and who is easy to relate to because thats not a threat. So what happens to us when we try to begin to go down, we are going down into very dangerous territory, and we have to begin to relate, first to from my point of view the priest, man, boy, dwarf.
If I am downtown in a city, and some disheveled young man wants a handout and approaches me, I freak, and the reason I freak is because this unruly dwarf man who is out of control is approaching me, wants something from me, is not very gracious about it, and I feel threatened. OK. Thats the exterior situation, but the interior situation is the problem in the thinking.
Another thing is, I have had a fascination for the book Dibs in Search of Self. It is the story about a little boy who wont talk hes about six and through playing in the sandbox in therapy, he eventually comes out of it. He works out his frustrations by burying the man toy in the sand and all that, and his mother. He finally becomes vocal. Ive read that story about six or seven times, so much so that I had to reach a point of asking myself why am I reading this? Why am I fascinated? And it is because here is my thinking function, and it is trying to grow up, but it is a hard, laborious process, and you have to go back to the parents, no matter how old you are. Ive seen people who, still in their 80s and 90s, still have their hang-ups about their parents because they didnt have any way to address that kind of situation.
As an intuiter, naturally, I wanted to fly, and I was out of contact from the ground and sensation and reality, and so for me, the priest flies, as well. He is spiritualized, and he is up there. Hes not grounded. He is to take care of the spiritual side of us. We have doctors, and we have teachers, etc., to deal with other levels of ourselves, but for the spiritual that priest is supposed to be taking care of that level, so that was much more compatible with me as an intuitive type. For somebody else, of course, the symbols may be different. Black men, or black boys, or whatever, would be part of my dreams. I am very leery of dream books. You dream about a house, and you look up "house" and you try to figure out how that relates to your dream. Well, we are actually 16 different types, because we have introversion and extraversion, but each one of the introverts are primary thinkers or feelers, or secondary sensators, so you actually end up with 16 different types, and so the one image, sure, it sometimes has a universal meaning, but it also has a particular meaning, and that is why it is so exciting. You cant look yourself up in a book. You have to relate your own feelings about "house" or "cliff," or "cave" or whatever. What does it mean in your own experience, and so each one of us has our own route down. We have to find that road and begin to walk it, and our dreams and the symbols we produce are going to show us the road signs of how to go. You go this way, and not that way, and this is more dangerous, and this has to be worked on, so we guide ourselves.
Jim: Our parents create these overlays that then have to be peeled back in the course of this psychological work. The same thing happens with our culture, and our work environment. It may be that someone is an introvert, and one of their parents is an extravert, and they have tried to become extraverted to please that parents image of what they should be like. So they have that unresolved issue to deal with. Or it may be they live in an extraverted society, and they are an introvert, and they have been trying to meet societys goals. For example, in the United States, it is good to be an extravert. It is really not too good to be an introvert. There are 100 ways that message is transmitted by looking at how we look at actors and politicians and sports figures, etc. So this creates another overlay. In the process of psychological self-discovery this cultural thing and this parental thing usually plays a role where we try to peel back and discover who we really are.
Tyra: I would really like to talk about this business about thinking and feeling again because everywhere we look we run up against that. I know that there are women who are women-libbing it and down with men. I dont like that attitude, myself, but what do you do in the society that is extraverted and also thinking? I mentioned before about schools. Schools are very organized, orderly, you follow a schedule, you follow a curriculum, if you are a feeling teacher and you sort of want to go off on what the institute would consider a tangent, then you cant do that. You have to kind of cut that off and not do that. You have to follow the program. The children are going to be tested on certain subjects in a certain way. The IQ tests are written in a certain way. You have to kind of gear yourself to that. If the girl doesnt like math, and a lot of girls dont, tough. You have to learn math in order to pass. Things like art and music are the first to go if there is a cut in the school system.
I do want to mention that in science, for instance, science is the comfortable backyard of the man, but a while ago Discover magazine did a whole article on women scientists. I wanted to talk about one in particular. One woman scientist was looking at the theory that the ape started to walk because men were out hunting, and therefore to hunt they had to go out and use their legs. She said that it could have been that raising children and gathering plants could also lead to walking around on two feet. Well, the men scientists werent very happy with this. She was doing some studies with pygmy chimpanzees, and there was the fossil bones of Lucy that were in the Cleveland Natural History Museum, and she wanted to measure them in line with her theory. So this is what happened:
"Zillman thats the lady said she tried to take measurements of the fossils herself, but when she asked Johanson for permission to see the collection when it was under his care at the Cleveland Museum, he said she could do so only if she gave him the right to review any papers she wrote on the fossils before she sent it to a journal. The implication was that he had to approve it, Zillman said, and she felt that was a form of censorship, and refused to work under those conditions. The collection has since been returned to Ethiopia."
So women are not esteemed on the same level as men, and so as a result she decided to have a conference with only female researchers. Well, the men went bananas at this. They werent happy, but she noticed, "Studies in anthropology, socio-linguistics and psychology document that men and women communicate differently. Men frequently use language to dominate. My goal at the meeting was that language be used to communicate, and as it turned out, thats what happened. People didnt compete with one another, they didnt interrupt one another, they actually listened. We got down to the nitty-gritty very fast, and could really discuss the issues."
So when you are dealing with your feeling function, the feeling function wants to relate. I thought the conference must have been a happy relief for the women not to have to outtalk each other, and dominate one another. In feeling, you want to have this feeling rapport, so in science, in education, in the work, and in the family, the woman wants to have a feeling rapport. If the men insist on dominating, and writing down the rules that the women have to conform to, I am not for womens lib, but on the other hand, women have to be validated, too, in their feelings. What we are dealing with, hopefully, if we are doing our psychological work, is that there is a true cooperation, that the thinking of the men is valued, so is the feeling of the women, and that they can come together and come to an understanding.
Man: It almost sounds, Tyra, like you are saying that men are generally thinkers, and women are generally feelers.
Tyra: I happen to think so. Now, in the Myers-Briggs test, what they have done I know a lot of men come out as feeling types, and I know that some men are feeling types, but I also know that in the Myers-Briggs test they say that they slant the testing. We have the hand-scoring test. When it comes to thinking and feeling, if the one who took the test is a male, you are supposed to use one piece of paper, and if it is a female, then you use another so that the score comes out differently. They have slanted it because too men were coming out as thinking, and too many women were coming out as feelers.
Jim: Lets put it this way. More women have feeling as their first or second function than men do, and more men have thinking as their first or second function than women do. If this happens to be true, then we get a slant on this whole business that if men create certain political and social and academic structures, like Tyra is trying to illustrate, then these structures are, indeed, slanted a certain way, and women can feel like these structures are not validating a feeling dimension. Or if men dominate the home life in certain situations where that happens, the feeling dimension, again, is not validated.
Tyra: It is also the thought that it is the woman who has to accommodate, not the man, to flow into the situation and make it harmoniously. Even if it is not a good situation, she has to do all she can to make it harmonious because of her feeling function. The man is not concerned about that the same way. He is concerned about the plan, the outline, the goal.
Jim: We are talking about three different areas, parental situations, environmental or cultural situations, and this male and female situation that all effect and overlay our type. I want us to break down again and come up with an example from any one of those areas.
Woman: Every year when I go to Germany, I feel so odd, I feel so out of place. When I now go back every summer for two weeks thats the most I can stand to my former homeland. Before I came to this country at the age of 19 I was very German, what you might all think as typically German. Individualistic, very smart I still am smart (everyone laughs), but in a different way with the heart more. So it was all intellect and probably pretty cool cookie.
Then I came to this country, and I always say, I found my heart here, brotherliness, sisterliness. Maybe it took me 10 years until I could put this harmony together of the two cultures so that now, when I am standing at the Greyhound station, or standing on a corner in a snowstorm or rain, I can talk to whoever is next to me, and I will. And if I am going out to Easter morning Mass in this country, of course I say, "Happy Easter. Nice sunshine today, isnt it?" Thats what we all do in this country. But you dont dare go back to Germany and do that in Germany. You are going to get it from your sister who is only 2 years older than I. At one time I thought she was a very lively extravert. Now she has changed, and she says, "Dont you dare when we go out to say "Good Morning" to the neighbors or to the people." I go out with my finger on my mouth. She says, "Why do you put your finger on your mouth?" I said, "I remember from last year you said, "Dont you dare." But I cannot tell you the real agony that I feel in my heart that I have to shut up. I think I have changed so much in this culture, and I am better for it, and I am very grateful for it. I feel very lonely in Germany.
Woman: When I was in elementary school, I was very involved with a lot of activity in school, and I was really proud of myself. My brother and I both went to this school. Then one day I entered the teachers lounge, and one teacher came to me, and he commented, "It would be better if you and your brother changed your personality." I am not extraverted, but I was enjoying being extraverted, and my brother was really passive, and for someone to make a comment to me, especially a teacher, that you are the girl and you have to be introverted, and your brother needs to be the extravert, I felt guilty. Then I tried hard to hide myself from the public.
Woman: I came from a family and a culture that feelings were not something that you discussed openly. If you had any feelings, you sure didnt tell anyone, and if you did, it was like you would get a punishment for having those kinds of feelings, especially anger or crying. They were suppressed. It was like you had to think, and you had to produce, which part of the culture I came from.
Jim: We can look at typology as a kind of natural innate type, but we also have to look at it as a kind of developmental process because thats what it is. We are starting this journey into the unconscious, and I want to talk about one critical area, and thats mid-life kinds of situations. Jung is the person who is at the root of many of the current psychological theories about mid-life because of his discussions of this time. He used to think of it as the time between 35th and 37th years, but that is just a kind of a ballpark figure. Circumstances could accelerate it or retard it, so I wouldnt want to get hung up on the exact age. But what comes into play is this kind of developmental process where we have our normal development, and then we are faced with the fact that this kind of development, which worked for us Let me make a little footnote here. If our own personal type has been overlaid by all these factors so we never got to be ourselves, then that complicates the whole issue of mid-life because we have to find out who we are. Heres how Jung used to describe it. He says this is, in fact, when he went through his own kind of crisis and he used to say to himself, "Well, I am Dr. Jung and I have so many children, and so many patients, and I have this kind of life." But at a certain point the life we have created no longer energizes us. It is as if we have spent our entire energy creating family or vocational choice and career and building relationships, and we reach a point where these things no longer have energy for us. They dont have juice for us. It is as if somebody has pulled the plug on us, and the energy that used to make us excited about them, well that is just draining away. When that process happens, then people often respond by intensifying their efforts in the area they were already working on. So for example, the businessman, who has a good career and he has worked hard, and now it just seems to be losing its meaning, well he may intensify and go even harder in his business activities because he literally doesnt know what else to do. The man has been living here (blackboard). He has had some kind of contact with part of his own anima. Lets call this part here the kind of anima development with his other side, the more feminine side of his personality, and it is often represented by his wife. Lets say this represents his developed side of his feeling and his wife. He reaches this mid-life crisis where the whole of his conscious personality seems to feel blah. He feels energyless. He can even go to the doctor and say he feels like he cant get out of bed in the morning. What am I going to do?
Well, if he doesnt get the right kind of advice, or he gets no advice at all, he can intensify his external activities that he has been doing and push himself harder, or he can begin to do things that can become very destructive. And heres what I mean. There are any number of men, when they reach this point, even though they were in love with their wife, and they still love her, this whole other part of their own anima becomes activated, this feminine dimension, and they have this terrible feeling that they have missed out on life, they have been caught up in this rut, and somehow they have to escape from it. They dont understand this as a call to explore this other side, this interior dimension of their own personality, and they project it out, and they go chasing after other anima figures. And they may do this in the form of chasing after younger women, or other women. This terrible misunderstanding does, at times, destroy their home life. They actually live this out on the exterior plane because they dont understand what is happening interiorly. Their own anima is fragmented, and so they will leave their wife and their children and their life. It is almost as if they are acting under some kind of compulsion. They will take up with some other relationship even though, in any number of cases, they care about their wife. It is a strange kind of thing that, to me, the only way to understand it is in these psychological terms. This is one particular case. It is easy to find examples of men who do this.
What do we do when we reach that mid-life point where our lives simply cant go on the way they are going. The kind of developmental things we have begun to talk about, to kind of get that X-ray of the other side, are very critical because if we dont develop interiorly, we are going to act it out in some fashion. One time we were at this art and craft show, and one of the people next to us was a school teacher who was in her 30s, and she had had a career as being a teacher, and somehow now this didnt quite satisfy her, and she had begun to paint pictures, and they were really quite abstract pictures. She was thinking, "Since I am not happy being a school teacher, maybe I will become an artist." So she came to the art show with her paintings which she had lavished so much energy on, and she set them up, and she was hoping to sell paintings and she would become an artist, and this would be a solution to the fact that she was no longer attracted to her teaching career. Well unfortunately, people walked by and they looked, and they kept on walking, and the weekend went on, and she became more and more discouraged because it was as if she was being rejected by people not buying her paintings. But she was really misunderstanding the fact that these paintings could be very important to her as gateways of how to get to the other side of her personality, but she couldnt turn them into a commercial operation that would be like a career. Those are two very different things. The way we deal with our other side is different than the way we deal with our role in the world, for example.
Tyra: Jim was 36 and I was 35, and we needed a place to live. To make a very long story short, we ended up buying a piece of property in the middle of the forest. We paid for it outright. Then we ordered the materials for the house, and they were delivered halfway up the hill because there wasnt a road all the way up. We were hand-digging a road, and the truck wouldnt go all the way up to the top. We had never built a house. About the only thing we had done was we had built a bookcase once, I think. (everyone laughs) So they we were, madly looking at the books trying to figure out what to do. We chose a pole house because what you do for a pole is you dig a hole in the ground, you stick a pole that is about 20 feet high, and then you can theoretically build the roof first. The walls dont support the roof, and you dont have to build a foundation. That seemed the simplest. However, the problem was that it was in the middle of August when we started the house, and the neighbors, what neighbors we had, came over and said, "You dont have your wood pile yet? How are you going to live, and you brought kids here? You are going to die this winter." Helpful things like that.
So we built the shell of the building in five weeks, we moved in, and during the course of the winter we finished the inside. But what was really happening was that at that time of our life we were plummeted into the other half because we were dealing with sensation par excellence. From dawn to dusk we were shouldering beams and using words that were not really ecclesiastically correct (everyone laughs). But we did it, and as a result, we survived. We survived the first winter. No one died. We had a lot of time to do what we wanted to do. We didnt know what that was. It is like a lot of times for each of us in our own path of discovery, all we have is the end of a string, and all we can do is pull on it. It is like a dream might give a little hint, or a memory, or a feeling for "Gee, it would be nice if I tried painting, or clay, or learned water skiing, or whatever." You had that little string, and you start pulling it. You dont know where it is going to end up. Thats the neat thing about it. You reach that part of life, and you know you have used most conscious functions until they are really exhausted, so now, there is a whole new life, but most people feel like it is over. This is it. Done. But you start pulling on that string, and if you are patient with yourself and you stick with it, all kinds of exciting new possibilities come up to work with.
Jim: We were acting out our other side. Maybe we were confusing sometimes something that should have been an inner activity with living it out in actual fact, but we were trying to take the fourth function and our other side seriously, and live with them. I think what we are saying is something that we really need to give ourselves time, we need to give ourselves space to discover these other dimensions of our own personality. We cant force them to come out, we cant make them come out and immediately turn them into some usefulness. It doesnt work like that. The poor lady who painted should just have painted for herself for a long time before she would ever think of trying to sell her paintings. It wouldnt have been right, even if we built our own house, we would think that we should go and now become building contractors because we simply couldnt cope with that. We didnt have the innate ability for that. But we need to give ourselves the time and space to explore this other side that we all have, and take what comes and be grateful for it. It shouldnt be looked at just with the critical rational eyes of the consciousness, like, "Oh, look at the painting I did, and it doesnt look like a real painting." Thats not it at all. We need to let that unconscious speak to us, come out and express itself, and then we respond to the unconscious.
Tyra: There is one point. If you are beginning to develop your third and fourth functions, our society is so oriented toward, "If you going to do it, do it right, or dont do it at all," and so when it comes to your third and fourth function, it is like giving yourself permission to play, to make mistakes, to make messes, to just do it all wrong. So what? Just throw it in the trash and start again. But thats very hard for the now mature adult, especially if you are in your late 30s. Certainly you should know better than to be doing this sort of thing. Jung found himself playing in the sand in the backyard, building little cities and stuff. He was just playing. He gave himself, I think, a couple of hours a day every day. He would just play with his sand castles, with his little cities. This meant a great deal, but if somebody from the outside were to look at him, they would think he was going off the edge. But it is very important to keep that playfulness.
Jim: These two days are simply a beginning. We looked at type recognition. Thats pretty straightforward. Whether or not our judgments about ourselves and others are super accurate at this stage is not really important. What is important is to open our eyes up and tomorrow or next week to remember to try to look typologically at situations and try to see more clearly. If we do put in the time and effort that way, gradually it will come into focus and would be a useful tool. But the other half of type recognition is type development, personal development. Type tolerance is not enough. We need to transform ourselves, and thats what we spent the day talking about, and I realize that if it is not all clear to you, thats all right, because it cant really be clear. It is another thing of experience, and all the day can do is leave you with a tiny taste that we are talking about a real inner process.
You have all worked hard, and I am really pleased with the quality of the kinds of examples that have come up with in the course of these days, which shows an aptitude that I believe that most people have to do good psychological work, because it is a natural process, and it is about ourselves, so it is interesting to us to really learn about ourselves in this deeper way. So I just encourage you to go on with it and see where it takes you.
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