My mother is a ghost now. She died the last day of 2016. She was the person nearest and dearest to me for much of my life, yet it seemed we never quite understood and accepted each other unconditionally. She haunts me as an unfulfilled spirit when I have anxious thoughts, or fearful premonitions, or self-admonition, but also in old sayings, endearing quirks, and the names of flowers and trees. And she inhabits my dreams, mostly as an unhappy child.
Individuation calls us to fight the dragon head-on. The struggles of relationship—whether with another person or within a culture—are opportunities. We can flee and seek a quick-fix, taking what my husband calls “tequila shot” flights to numb the discomfort until the next situation arises. Or we can remain within the oyster shell and endure the uncomfortable rubbing.
Anorexia nervosa can be understood as an archetypal death-rebirth process. A typological analysis shows a psychological syndrome based in archetypal possession resulting from the dynamic configuration of INTJ preferences. The individual with anorexia undertakes her own heroic psychospiritual journey through the underworld to transform personal and collective consciousness.
To have to spend a year in one’s inferior function is like a yearlong time-out for a toddler. I got so bored and desperate with my inferior introverted sensing (Si) function, required to gather and document the data, that I spent many hours asleep in the library. I could have asked Dr. Goldsmith for help, or maybe a mercy killing, but I was too proud to admit difficulty.
The film is arguably an example of INFJ art itself, providing a window into the awakening INFJ nature essential to the culture’s efforts to address power imbalances and welcome a new consciousness toward that which is deemed “other.” This paradigm shift ultimately requires humans to become active participants in an awakening consciousness.
Like the water that surrounds their country, the Greeks are very fluid and go with the flow. They are passionate and capable. However, their heroic use of extraverted sensing has contributed to the current economic crisis. The Greek hero must ease his extraverted sensing grip and use puer extraverted thinking energy to build analytical and efficient systems.
I allowed myself to take a little vacation from my single-mindedness and felt a shift in attitude and awareness almost immediately. My linear, tunnel-vision mindset relaxed, and I began to notice and embrace information, insights, and opportunities that came along unexpectedly and felt important despite having no logical connection with the task at hand.
“Everything has a purpose, clocks tell you the time, trains take you to places. Machines never come with any extra parts, you know. They always come with the exact amount they need. So I figured if the entire world was one big machine, I couldn’t be an extra part. I had to be here for some reason. And that means you have to be here for some reason, too. ”
Our often-used shorthand illustration with a line drawn between the four allegedly conscious function-attitudes and the four “unconscious” ones is misleading because consciousness is not a sufficiently reliable characteristic for distinguishing these two sides of the psyche’s typology. It’s related to what distinguishes them, but only as a secondary and fairly unpredictable characteristic.
The portrait of Bob Dylan in the film “I’m not there” demonstrates how a lack of father-specific structure is compensated by a powerful and extraordinarily creative but volatile and defenseless Puer structure; and the movie further illustrates the tendency of the Shadow complexes to rise to repair such psychic vulnerabilities and restore equilibrium.