As I explained in a previous post, etymologically, ‘weird’ means ‘fate’ and in the way I am speaking of it is also synonymous with the process of individuation; becoming one’s true and whole (unique) self. In this context, we might think of fate as a divine blueprint with which, to a certain extent, we can choose whether or not to align ourselves.
This morning I had a dream I was having a discussion with a woman, telling her my thoughts regarding this golden thread of fate which I have been writing about in my blog. Basically, I was explaining my view that living an authentic life is not a matter of making arbitrary choices as some would have it. That is, we do have a nature that we can live from, a thread to follow, that will guide us to what is best for us, and which may or may not give us what we think we need and want. The woman thought about this for a moment and then said she could see it from either side. I replied that yes, I think it is both.
I found this dream interesting from the perspective that all parts in a dream are aspects of ourselves and it seems I (as in my deeper self) am wanting to look at the whole picture, in other words, include paradox. Fate is paradoxical, in other words inclusive, and the process of listening to and considering opposites allows what Jung called the ‘transcendent function’ to arise. A third thing emerges that is neither one polarity nor the other, but something new which contains something of both, which is how my dream concludes.
In the case of what I have been writing about on this blog I have, in a sense, been taking a counter cultural viewpoint. From this perspective, rather than “inventing” or “re-inventing ourselves,”, living authentically involves a process of discovery because we already have a nature, a soul-self, a blueprint, a “weird”, a thread of fate (it can be called by many names.) Jung says, we can only live from what we are. If we do so, not only will this lead us on an amazing adventure through life (though there will be times of darkness and challenges), we will generally feel more at one with ourselves and all of life, as well as fulfilled.
But there is, of course, an argument to this, the more common western view, that we are the masters of our destiny and we create our lives with our will. And this is true also.
And here we come to the paradox and the transcendent function, the reality which holds both. Jung himself believed that the self is neither fixed nor static. It develops as we make choices and take various actions in our lives. Yet, even these choices come from somewhere, some source. Some one or some thing is doing the creating.
Jung has an interesting example. A man once came to him for analysis and presented a dream. After Jung analyzed the dream (I’m not sure how long they worked on it), the man told him that he had made up the dream and had come to prove that dream analysis was nonsense, and that Jung was really a charlatan, etc. But then the man told Jung that he (Jung) had just told him all about his (the man’s) life. As Jung explained, that is because the man’s “made-up” dream still came from the same source, the man’s creative centre.
In other words, we cannot not live from our nature in some manner. Even our fakeness is our own unique fakeness. Most of us are already living from our centres to a large extent, even if we are dissociated and are not conscious of where this is coming from. We have probably made many choices which are perfectly in line with who we are. If we are lucky enough to have people we feel emotionally safe with, that is, we don’t fear judgment or criticism from them, and can relax in their presence, we act naturally (from our nature) with them. Problems arise however, If we aren’t consciously connected to ourselves because we may lack a sense of boundaries and limits in our relationships. We might feel fine with our good friends but we might be intrusive with them, which they are not so happy about – or vice versa. Our unconscious nature needs containment, protection, and reeling in sometimes. It sometimes needs a fence.
It also needs pruning as well as weeding, watering, fertilizing, and tending. We need our will to not just be servants to our nature, but to co-create with it, be collaborators and cultivators, if we wish to bring our nature to fruition and benefit not only ourselves but the world. This is a very different paradigm from striving for success for its own sake, and it is also different from just living from our nature,
In conclusion, we cannot not act from our selves, our nature, on one level, but conscious awareness of our golden thread of fate will allow us to employ our will in the interests of not only our selves but the whole in which we are embedded.