Sunday, August 23, 2015


How does the Psyche  incorporate a society's shift in values? This dream illustrates the process.

The Dream: My mother and I wander through a morgue. We come to a man's body, his head uncovered. With his buzz cut gray hair and square jaw he looks as if he might have been a Marine in the 50s. His color is that of the dead—and clearly he is—but my mother says to him, “If you're not dead you'd better get up, now!” I can see that she doesn't realize he's a corpse, and I try to lead her away.

According to Jung, the father represents society's values, and there are echos of my father, who worked with the Marines, in this figure. With his buzz cut and Marine bearing, the dead man represents the old order, the social framework of the 50s. This social order is dead in the contemporary world, and yet the inner mother part of myself, the part that has inculcated my parents' values, can't quite except it. The part of me that accepts the vast social changes that have occurred since my childhood tries to gently lead “mother” way from the past.

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