Psychology discusses the various ways in which the human mind reacts to threatening situations under the heading ‘defense mechanisms.’ These typically automatic (unconscious) reactions can include experiences such as repression, denial, withdrawal, and PROJECTION.
While most, if not all of the known defense mechanisms are clearly in operation in these very threatening times, projection is the one that possesses the greatest potential for harm in our current collective situation.
Carl Jung discussed projection as the externalization of our own ‘shadow impulses’ in order to avoid facing and reconciling them. By highlighting the flaws in others, we temporarily divert our attention from our own faults and resultant suffering as a way of denying what needs to be addressed within ourselves. While this may alleviate some pain in the short term, the longer term effects are often disastrous for self and others.
Jung also highlighted how projection can operate on a much larger scale within entire societies, and any historical survey can reveal how people have always had to identify some form of enemy upon which to project their own darkness. This has manifested in history as racism, hyper-nationalism, exploitation, and ultimately WAR.
Projection is currently OUT OF CONTROL in America, and our bi-polar nation is at war with itself.
Each and every one of us MUST NOW take personal responsibility to identify and reign-in our projections and deal respectfully with one another. If we do not, we will further weaken the very fabric of our nation, risk escalating violence, and open ourselves up to more extensive foreign interference.
Friends, many of you know how much I dislike politics, and how hard I try to hold my own personal convictions ‘close to my vest.’ However, I cannot sit idly by and watch as a clearly diagnosable and highly treatable condition ravages the population, and threatens our nation.
And so, I will say very bluntly: Stop acting like spoiled little children wanting their own way in everything! Accept that there are others with different thoughts, opinions, and values than your own! Take ownership of YOUR shadow and work to be a more compassionate and kind human being to EVERYONE, not just those with whom you agree!
Seriously folks, we are standing on the edge of something very dangerous right now, and the responsibility rests with EACH and EVERY one of us to open our eyes to how our own thoughts, words, and actions are either part of the problem, or part of the solution moving forward.
Let us not be swept into polarization and opposition, but let us all remember that we are all on this journey together, regardless of our skin pigmentation, religious convictions, or political alignment.
We MUST find a path forward in LOVE and UNITY.
Projection is NOT that path.