Facing Shadows: The Need for Change vs The Need for ControlSep 11, 2022
There is another factor that usually blinds us from realizing the needed changes we must make to alchemize. There is typically a conflict between our need to change/alchemize and our ego’s need to be always in control. The fear of uncertainty, or the fear of the unknown, is usually just enough to push many of us into the comforts of complacency, self-sabotaging behaviors, and repeat patterns that send us spiraling into a cycle of reliving our greatest traumatic experiences.
Our ego’s addiction to risk aversion is a strong influence to remain in the safety of the familiar, which shows itself through procrastination and complacency.
To change an old habit, one has to let go of the old habit in favor of a new one. To become independent, one has to let go of one’s dependency on other people. The ‘parts’ of us that seek to control outcome interprets the concepts of “Wu Wei” and “Flow like Water” as nonsensical riddles to be repeated at cocktail parties as opposed to part of the hidden code to alchemize.
An example of an ego holding on to old algorithms is when parents self-sabotage their own efforts to let go of the childhood views of their children. Likewise, problems occur whenever a college-age person self-sabotages their efforts to end their dependency on their parents. In order to grow, one needs to let go of the old ways to pave the way for novel ways. A growth mindset asks of us to develop the ability to surrender control of all that is outside of one’s control. It is in this letting go that we gain so much more.
"The tendencies of the conscious and the unconscious are the two factors that together make up the transcendent function. It is called “transcendent” because it makes the transition from one attitude to another organically possible, without loss of the unconscious." - “The Transcendent Function” (/1958), CW 8, § 145.
Nature reveals that it is the nature course for old forms to be given up to pave the way for newer beautiful forms. The caterpillar has to let go of its squirming worm-form and develop the strength to fly by breaking from its cocoon in order to achieve its lovely butterfly form.
Even in the spiritual realm, it has been said “one part of us has to die in order for another part to be reborn, or come online” and this dying to oneself is a paradox, as life and death are interwoven. Calcination asks us to burn off the aspects of our "false self", that have long been dead, in order for other parts of us to truly live.
We cut the dead ends off of hair, in order to facilitate healthy growth.
Agape and Stay L.I.T.