Projecting the shadow self

Reading over the last two posts again, I realise I haven’t been entirely honest. Repression is too easy, and in writing about the seventh house of partnerships, I fell into precisely what one does through the seventh house — project onto the other aspects of the self one’d prefer to externalise (it is my chart, after all).

According to Jungian analyses, as explained by Rebeca Eigen:

Projection is an unconscious psychological mechanism. We all project onto other people parts of ourselves that we disown, that we deny. We will usually not identify with the projected quality or characteristic at all. It’s them. It’s not us.

Standover man I don’t know enough about Jung (maybe I should start reading), but Eigen explains that ‘Jung believed that whatever we are highly identified with in our character, the opposite extreme will be in our unconscious. He called this the law of opposites. So unconsciously we will attract the parts of us that we actually badly need.’ One doesn’t really need Jung 101 to know that’s what I haven’t dealt with — the ‘psychic signals’, as ElsaElsa calls it, that I’m sending.

That’s the task for 2008, I think. Facing my shadow self. And my own psychic pain that acts like a homing beacon for others. More Eigen:

No one does this overnight. Shadow work is a life-long retrieval process and it takes years of patient inner dialogue with oneself to understand and even admit to ourselves that Shadow work is even realistic and necessary. It’s not easy to do and takes time and energy. Not always, but most often it begins at midlife when we become determined to see the truth about ourselves after a series of painful relationships.

I’m trying, I’m trying!


2 Responses to Projecting the shadow self

  1. I think projection is one of the master defence mechanisms. Freud talked about it too. Whether or not we’re projecting aspects of our selves, per se, or just stuff that we tend to unconsciously express is another matter. Since it looks like you’re into Buddhism I could mention the idea of skandhas.

    Interesting blog!

  2. hitchhiker72 says:

    Hi, and thanks for your comment.

    I know of the skandhas but not enough to say anything intelligent about it at this point. I shall try to learn a little more as I go along.

    Thanks for stopping by as I meander (stumble?!) through this life.

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