The Virtual Psyche Part 1

First and foremost here, I want to address primarily the observable effects that the creation of the virtual realm has had on modern man; and how, upon observing my own behaviours in relation to its existence, I have gained some insight as to the sources for these behaviours and into the conclusions I have drawn therein.

I will be the first to say that when it comes to the internet and how it works in the material way (meaning the technology behind the virtual realm itself) , I am utterly ignorant; so I will have to admit a certain bias which I will champion here in the name of my own ignorance. Having said that, we may press on with the inquiry.

We have the primary tendency as human beings towards arrogance, and despite what peasant wisdoms we have conjured up over the years to attempt to keep it at bay, it is deeply ingrained in us and cannot be fully destroyed but by any means but dissolution of the cause of arrogance. This capacity for arrogance is one of our greatest gifts however, in that it is both a precursor and result of the way human perception functions. I draw a parallel here, between our collective tendency towards assumptive arrogance, and the defiance required for the ego germ (the early stages of ego development, which appears firstly in childhood) to emancipate itself from the uroboric soup of a child-existence. Our perceptions, are for the most part, not our own. They are assumptions about the world which are predicated on upon large scale collective and unquestioned conclusions about the nature of reality and its various aspects. These conclusions are commonly referred to (especially among extremist/activist groups) as cultural conditioning. It is a term which unfortunately has lost its scientific and legitimate meaning in the hands of those unaware of what it actually implies, and is now a term so burdened with negative connotations that it might as well be a full diaper. The source of this conditioning (for lack of a better term) and its validity is a topic later discussed in this paper. We must content ourselves with the use of the above information (and the clumsy term "cultural conditioning") for our true purpose.

Bearing the nature of assumptive thinking and its side effect of cultural conditioning in mind as context, we may press on. The foundations of our personas are built out of the building blocks of this cultural conditioning; this conditioning being, any assumption or conclusion drawn about the world that a particular collective of people share, and use to define themselves as 'other' than the rest of the collectives. As with the individual in this case, so too does this conditioning apply for groups of people, universally. These conclusions are (to the great discomfort of many champions of their respective collectives) are not to be mistaken for reasonable conclusions that are drawn purely out of conscious thought, they are rather a result of the creative synthesis between previously unconscious contents, and fully conscious reasoning. The perceptive conclusion which is closest to that mysterious and unattainable absolute truth behind reality is that which takes the objective (material, un-meaningful, and non-emotional) and attempting to mediate it with conclusive subjective material (that which is natural, meaningful, emotional). Unfortunately (more bad news for the champions) if one takes one approach only over the other, one is led astray from reality, and becomes in a sense, possessed by their own conclusions. These synthetic conclusions which are the foundation upon which our collective perceptions are built have been; throughout history (and mythology), synthetically created by exceptional individuals who by their exceptional and impactful actions, define their respective cultures. The primary trademark of these individuals is not only their creativity, but their voluntary confrontation with, and acceptance of whatever collective problem the collective itself cannot currently see. These exceptional individuals are thus abstracted and represented symbolically in myth and story, so that the collective can then seek to imitate and implement their previously exceptional behaviour into their own lives.

The unconscious symbol (or to put it simply, the archetype) which is associated with the aforementioned creative/genius/revolutionary type is the hero character of mythology. In this new age of overemphasis in revolutionary change, the validity of the hero myth and its psychological implications are more and more undermined. This is not without reason though, for all presuppositions upon which the individual psyche (and thus the collective as well) are based, are transformed and updated by the process of this unrelenting questioning; granting the renewal of "the old order", ie cultural conditioning. It is precisely this process described above which has allowed the most widely accepted cultures (each their own set of assumptive conclusions) of today to become as successful and prosperous as they are. And it has allowed those who live


within these collectives to live reasonably meaningful lives in which only the necessary amounts of suffering to generate any kind of meaning is undertaken. This process as described above, applies also to the individual, in so much that the our perception is not a concept but a process which constantly dissects, transforms and re-creates reality as a consequence of its own nature. When we look at a flower, it is not a "flower". "Flower" is a word, a set of symbols associated with the thing we see when we imagine or perceive the strange and


mysterious thing we call "flower", but it is not the thing in of itself, only an abstraction. Our cultural conditioning, as well as the individual concepts which govern our behaviour are thus collective abstractions/reflections, of the above described individual processes, which are capable of possessing individuals. Possession meaning that they govern our behaviour despite what the rest of the psyche needs/demands. This I call the perceiving function of man, possession being one of the dangers the undeveloped psyche is vulnerable to.




Our original inquiry arises here, at the point where we may take the processes described above as context for the discussion which will begin in part 2.


11 views0 comments

Recent Posts

See All