January 8, 2012

The Collective Unconscious, The Maya, The Dim Witted Humans - 2012

"But do we really live? To live without knowing what life is - is that living?"
-Fernando Pessoa

This New Year’s Eve I really opened my eyes and observed the human species (well- New Yorkers anyway.. they’re human right?) in their present environment behaving as naturally as they could. I’m used to finding genuine people scattered randomly amongst the conformist and pessimists I usually encounter, people who are content. People doing little things.. Little things that really have the power to change a world. It wasn’t a night for politeness and random acts of kindness though- to the contrary I found I was quite baffled by the amount of disgust and disappointment I felt in the people I was observing.

The New Year is supposed to signify a fresh start, an awakening, a time to leave the past in the past and look to the future- but time really is linear and when comparing a life span to the age of the universe, human life happens in an instant. Now I don’t know if it was the luck of the draw but I had the pleasure of spending my new years with a bunch of Winners, and I do mean that in the Charlie Sheen sense. Apparently, everyone I had met had decided that instead of their typical do-gooder resolutions their new resolutions this year would be to be better Racists, Bigots, and utter Douchasaurus-es. I got a firsthand look at the very things that will lead to our demise as a species, all self-induced might I add.

What did I see? Somber technology junkies. Complaint-aholics with little to no appreciation. People rushing their lives to meet an early grave. People so disappointed with everything they become instigators. Greedy- yet-totally-cheap-ers. Living-but-lifeless individuals tied up in their own subconscious.. A place no one should be confined to for long periods- especially when you exhibit one or more of the aforementioned qualities.

I walked around Hell’s Kitchen for a while, (ahh.. the irony) and the city was breathtaking. The buildings were lit up, the street was quiet and calm which surprised me, and the weather was the best you could ask for on a December night in the Big Apple. It was the first time in a long time that I was actually appreciating the city, the night had a sense of newness to it. I felt good, I was happy and I was looking forward to taking it in for a while before I got ready to bring in the new year. And then humanity showed up.

First I went to get a drink at the corner bodega, I needed a caffeine fix until party time. The store was pretty big and the Arab man who was working there apparently felt I needed to be followed and watched while shopping, you know.. because I’m obviously going to drink my coffee, go bat-shit crazy, and try to rob/kill him.

Mind you.. This is what I pretty much looked like, only better dressed.
Obviously I have a 9mm tucked into my pants and am going to ruin your evening.

But nevertheless I trekked on. I decided to sit in the park on ninth for a bit and drink my coffee and secretly smoke a couple cigarettes, because this is America- but I am not free to smoke where I please anymore. This country got rich off tobacco products and hide the information about just how poisonous the product is yet I am the one punished for it. In the park there was a group of preteen girls obsessing over their divinity. I realized as I was listening that the godliness they were referring to was in fact just sexual depravity in disguise. It didn’t really surprise me though after all I heard two fifteen year olds discussing blow jobs on the bus last week.

I left the park and started heading to Port Authority so I could go home and get ready for the night. Heading there was uneventful, other than the thousands of police officers I passed while walking ten blocks. A night of fun in the city usually requires the entire concerted efforts of the NYPD, but in a post 9/11 New York City- trust issues are yesterday’s news. I got to Port Authority and headed for a long line of pissed off, tired, agitated people. The man in front of me was an elderly Vietnamese man, who although was wearing a scowl- seemed as though he had quite a pep in his step. Directly in front of him was a Chinese family, which I could tell because of the countless hours my daughter spends watching Ni Hao Kai Lan.

After about ten minutes of us being on line the Chinese family leaves to, I assume, get a different bus or something. As they walked away the Vietnamese man pretended to pull a machete (at least that’s what I imagined) out of his waistband and air-decapitate them all as they walked down the stairs. A Chinese family, with two young kids. He also made no attempt in hiding this action.

I got on the bus and sat as far away from the Vietnamese man as I possibly could. I had given up my hope of seeing a drastic change in the love, compassion, and kindness people have and show. World Peace? Not on the menu this year, Miss America. And just when I thought it couldn’t get any worse…

I was confronted with this.
H5N1 now available on the window sill of your local NJ Transit bus.

I was feeling extremely daunted about the prospective future of this species. These people are the products of this society, and if they’re this fucked up.. Are the rest of us too? We’re disarrayed and even with all those neatly paved roads under our neatly tied shoes… we’re lost and we don’t know which direction to go in. But this is good hopefully. The fact that we recognize the unrest within our species shows that the collective unconscious is awakening and becoming more apparent in everyone.

C. G. Jung’s Definition of the Collective Unconscious

The collective unconscious is a part of the psyche which can be negatively distinguished from a personal unconscious by the fact that it does not, like the latter, owe its existence to personal experience and consequently is not a personal acquisition. While the personal unconscious is made up essentially of contents which have at one time been conscious but which have disappeared from consciousness through having been forgotten or repressed, the contents of the collective unconscious have never been in consciousness, and therefore have never been individually acquired, but owe their existence exclusively to heredity. Whereas the personal unconscious consists for the most part of complexes, the content of the collective unconscious is made up essentially of archetypes.

The concept of the archetype, which is an indispensable correlate of the idea of the collective unconscious, indicates the existence of definite forms in the psyche which seem to be present always and everywhere. Mythological research calls them "motifs"; in the psychology of primitives they correspond to Levy-Bruh's concept of "representations collectives," and in the field of comparative religion they have been defined by Hubert and Mauss as "categories of the imagination." Adolf Bastian long ago called them "elementary" or “primordial thoughts." From these references it should be clear enough that my idea of the archetype - literally a pre-existent form - does not stand alone but is something that is recognized and named in other fields of knowledge.

My thesis, then, is as follows: In addition to our immediate consciousness, which is of a thoroughly personal nature and which we believe to be the only empirical psyche (even if we tack on the personal unconscious as an appendix), there exists a second psychic system of a collective, universal, and impersonal nature which is identical in all individuals. This collective unconscious does not develop individually but is inherited. It consists of pre-existent forms, the archetypes, which can only become conscious secondarily and which give definite form to certain psychic contents.

I find it amusing that the collective unconscious has chosen to become more prevalent in the “end times”. The Maya’s were a truly astounding civilization with an unprecedented knowledge of the cosmos, something they literally had no reason or tools to involve themselves in in the first place. And while the actual translations of what the Maya said would happen at the end of their calendar year (End of Baktun) are often misconstrued or assumed- the thing the Maya were warning us about was and will always be very simple.

The Maya believed that the end of each baktun was a moment of great danger, a moment at which their ‘Gods’ could end the world. The creator Maya deity being Itzamna or Hanub Ku, a God who had created three worlds, two of which he had already destroyed through a deluge and was destined to destroy the third with a universal flood as well(ours). The Maya believed that these wiped out civilizations were failed attempts, the first being dwarfs and the second being a mysterious group known as “The Offenders”, the human species being just another design error.

It is very easy for humans to acknowledge and even believe in this stuff, as we are very primitive with our beliefs. Add the fact that we are lost, hate everyone & everything, and enjoy seeing others suffer- and we practically beg for humanities demise. The majority of us believe there is some outside force that ultimately decides our fate, and there's no place like a bible for an good old apocalypse scenario. So would it really be so ludicrous to think that perhaps the Maya were there to see the beginning, or at least around early enough to know what the beginning was? We are all obsessed with the big question- “What is the meaning of life?“ Could it be death? Could we just be a stepping stone to something else? And if that’s so what the fuck man, I mean really?

This year is big. So much is changing. So much is going on. There are revolutions. There is war. There is famine. There is greed. There is disdain. We are lost, we feel hopeless, and we could be giving up. When the end game is unclear, you don’t know what kind of effect your actions can have. A simple assumption can cause the extinction of a species.

xoxo disaster girl

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