In the last post, Part 1 of this series, we laid the foundation for recognizing true love in contrast to counterfeit love. True love will manifest itself as love of self and love of others simultaneously due to the nature of the light being the same in both. Counterfeit love is good at mimicking love of self or love of others, but typically finds it difficult to mimic both. In this post we are going to explore why that is to really help us discern which actions are born of the pure love of Christ and which only pretend to be.
Since true love of self and others comes from light within the same individual, this can be framed as the proper growth and appropriate balance of the two major categorical aspects of our identity – the inner self and the outer self.
Inner Self and Outer Self
The inner self is the part of our identity that exists independent of our outer relationships. The outer self is the part of our identity that is defined by our relationships to the outer world around us and through which our inner selves can appropriately connect one to another. In other words there is a truth of the self that rests independent of others, and there is a truth of the self that is inextricably linked with the groups we belong to and our relationship to them (marriage – spouse; family – sibling, parent, child; community – local, national; other groups – religious faith, gender, race, sexuality, etc.).
In recent years I have become a big fan of Carl Jung, brilliant psychological theorist and the father of modern analytical psychology. In Jungian psychology, our personality and brain can more accurately be viewed as a network of many different varieties of personalities that can act independent of one another, and in fact will act independent of one another unless and until we gradually grow through a maturation process and integrate these personalities with one another into the conscious whole. This integration process is what our higher order thinking is capable of doing, and may even be viewed as the primary function of our consciousness.
But left disintegrated, when that portion of the brain is activated (like the alcoholic part of the brain in someone addicted to alcohol) that personality will come out regardless of whether it has been integrated with the whole or not, and not integrated will act as if it has its own will, agenda, and desires. Or said another way, left disintegrated the personality will act out impulsively and only in consideration of itself. This selfishness is synonymous with hatred or sin.
The Fracture of Truth is also a Fracture of Self – As We Are Truth
Sin, hatred, or evil can be defined as that which in a limited perspective looks desirable, but from the perspective of the whole is in reality detrimental. Most of the time it is even detrimental in the long run to the very aspect of the self that viewed it as desirable in the first place since the narrowed viewpoint often only considers the desirability in the short term. From a Jungian perspective, we can call this a failure of integrating the personalities. This failure to integrate the various personalities of the self disallows the whole truth of the self to be seen in appropriate harmony and balance, and therefore does not act in concert with the totality of the self.
Another way to look at this is that sin is a lie calculated to indulge a particular fractured or disintegrated part of truth at the expense of the whole. By fracturing a portion of the truth off and focusing in on it in a way that masks the remainder of reality, you can then live out the delusion that the indulgence is desirable and preferable and see it as “good” or even loving which delusion serves to justify and mask the actual hatred of the thing sought after.
A Musical Aside
You can get a sense of this when considering music. Music arises primarily out of inspiration as we are typically unconscious of the mathematical truths being communicated, rather we simply feel the communication.
And this is true of all human behaviors, we always begin by acting out things we intuitively understand well before we start observing what we do, and sometimes at the highest level after observation we reach the point of finally consciously articulating why we are doing the behavior we are doing and only then really comprehending it. It starts out because it just feels right, and it is the artists world to explore the behaviors and truths of this unarticulated world that we as yet do not fully comprehend.
As a species, as far as music goes we are mostly just in the behavior stage, it’s an art rather than a science at this point, but let me delve a little into observation and an attempted articulation. Although we mostly don’t consciously recognize it, formulated and encoded in the patterns of music are objective and specific real messages or truths being communicated.
When you hear music that comes of darkness, or has some element of darkness in it, you can notice that it happens through fractionation if you compare it to similar but uplifting music. The message communicated through melody, percussion, harmony, and rhythm matches the same “spirit” of the sin itself, that seeks to indulge one aspect of truth while intentionally masking the whole to create an enticing delusion where the indulgence and impulsive behavior feels justified. Beware if you feel comfortable in the spirit that promotes these delusions, it tells you something about where you really are, and how blind or not you are to the deception, how desirous you are to entertain the false indulgences. (And for that music that points to and acts in a harmonious whole of truth, that which opens and enlightens the mind by its communication, if your impulse is to resist or hate the feeling you likewise might want to consider what it is exposing that you so desperately want to keep hidden from yourself).
The more hateful the sound being communicated, the more fractionated it becomes. I’m speaking at the edges of my knowledge, but it is something I intuited 15 years ago and am only now beginning to articulate what I can feel and see. Pay attention next time you listen to a variety of music, and I think you will see what I am getting at.
Modeling A Fracture Of Self
That was a long aside, let’s get back to behaviors and the fractionation of self. In the broadest sense, and for the purpose of this series, all of these personalities could more simply be categorized into the two primary personalities of the self – the inner self and the outer self as displayed in the original zen image above.
Yet there is another way to diagram this inner and outer self that I think is more helpful in seeing the natural interaction between the two. That is by diagraming a utopian neighborhood, each house with a yard and fence representing a single person.
Now in a perfect utopian ideal where everyone is perfect matured, integrated, and therefore always acting in harmony of the whole, everything remains pristine. Each home represents a harmonious integrated and perfectly loving individual. As such the inner and outer selves are integrated into a single person.
When they are in their home, they are acting on those truths of the inner self or personality. Their yard can be considered the transition from the inner self to the outer self that of course would be incomplete without a utopian white picket fence that sets appropriate healthy boundaries between you and the outer world, letting people in when appropriate and keeping them out when appropriate, also allowing you to venture into the outer world. And when outside of the fence the individual is acting on those truths of outer self or personality, connecting with others in all varieties of relationships and groups.
But the reality is we are not in a utopia, and we are not yet perfectly loving beings. Instead we are not perfectly integrated and balanced and remain fractured to some degree. So instead of the appropriate white picket fence in some places, in its place is a stone or brick wall fracturing the inner and outer self. So now at times instead of acting as one unified personality, we have a split, one person or part of our self sits inside the home while the other lives outside the wall as represented in the image below (photoshop is not my specialty).
The Results Of Fracture
Now fractured with two parts of yourself separated by a wall, what is the fundamental truth that each personality is barred from seeing correctly? It is this – unable to see the whole, they cannot truly see the complete eternal and infinite value of self and others.
The result of this inability to see true value, the result of being fractured, is that people’s value will only be seen in a limited sense and disproportionately so according to the particular blind spots of the fracture. This inevitably leads to seeing people in a hierarchy of value, and from there, as a consequence, placing yourself somewhere in that hierarchy.
And finally, due to this a person will be inclined to act from a place of inferiority or superiority on that principle. And due to the nature of the wall they will simultaneously be inclined to act from a place of unhealthy or dysfunctional boundaries being unable to naturally honor the full truth of the inner and outer selves simultaneously – in which they act either overly walled-off or boundary-less depending on which side of the wall they are acting from.
In Part 3, we will discuss the interplay of these two realities, and see how it can literally map and account for all sin that has and ever will exist. That truly this split, represented by the wall, is the root of all sin and hatred. And when you can detect the root causes and motivations for all sin, true love or those actions which are motivated by the integrated balance of self, can also be seen for what it really is. And being able to see this reality is half the battle.