He: Understanding Masculine Psychology by Robert A. Johnson. Quotes and comments

The story begins with the Fisher King has been wounded and all the animals and plants in the kingdom and those surrounding it mourning and weeping. Then, a boy who is of so little consequence that he has no name, but called Parsifal comes. Parsifal, as a fool, will redeem the health of the Fisher King. In Biblical terms, only the innocent can enter the gates of Heaven. Parsifal wants to become a knight so he starts his quest. With several rounds of success, he enters the Fisher King Castle. A godfather has once told Pascifel to ask the question ‘Whom does the Grail serve?’ What would knighthood be worth if it were not for this noble end? However, Parsifal suffers from his mother complex and can not be the independent young man and cannot open his mouth to ask such question.

Parsifal leaves the Castle without the Grail because he forgets to ask such an important question. The young man cannot understand the power of the femininity until he meets Blanche Fleur, and develops a correct relationship with his inner woman.

Parsifal carries on with his heroic quest until one day he is greeted by an old man. This old man is the Hermit, a sage, gives him advice and critiques on his ego. But he also turns gentle and shows him the shortcut to the Grail castle.

This time, Parsifal remembers to ask the right question as his mother complex is resolved. And the Grail serves the Grail King. Rejoicing, the Grail King is now healed and in peace, joy and serenity.

The Mother Complex

There are six basic relaitonships a man bears to the feminine world. All six are useful to him and each has its own nobility. It is only the contamination of one with another that makes difficulty. These difficulties are central to a man’s passage through life. The six feminine elements are as below:

  • His human mother

The actual woman who was his mother, she with all her idiosyncrasies, individual characteristics, and uniqueness

  • His mother complex (the interior mother within one’s mind)

This resides entirely inside the man himself. This is his regressive capacity which would like to return to a dependency on his mother and be a child again. This is a man’s wish to fail, his defeatist capacity, his subterranean fascination with death or accident, his demand to be taken care of. This is pure poison in a man’s psychology.

  • His mother archetype. (the collective idea)

If the mother complex is pure poison, the mother archetype is pure gold. It is the feminine half of God, the cornucopia of the universe, mother nature, the bounty which is freely poured out to us without fail. We could not live for a minute without the bounty of the mother archetype. It is always reliable, nourishing, sustaining.

  • His fair maiden (your own personalised anima)

This is the feminine component in every man’s psychic structure and is the interior companion or inspirer of his life. It is Blanche Fleur. It is she who gives meaning and colour to one’s life. Dr. Jung calls it the anima.

  • His wife or partner

The flesh and blood human being who shares his life journey with.

  • Sophia

This is the Goddess of Wisdom, the feminine half of God, the Shekinah in Jewish mysticism. It comes as a shock to a man to discover that Wisdom is feminine, but all mythologies have portrayed it so.

Achievement and the Ugly Damsel

There is some strange correlation between the achievement of a man and the power of the Hideous Damsel in his life. The greater the height, the greater his capacity for suffering and humiliation seems: the amount of fame and adulation one gets in the outer world seems to determine the sense of failure and meaninglessness he will find at the hands of the Hideous Damsel. One would guess that accomplishment would be the surest protection against meaninglessness, but this is not so. It is the accomplished man who is most capable of asking unanswerable questions about his worth and the meaning of his life.

The Hermit Within

These few people, born hermits (highly introverted souls), must remain in the forest (symbolically speaking) in solitude, storing up energy so that they may serve mankind when their quality is crucial and of the highest value.  There are few Red knight victories for these persons and they know little of the laurel leaves of victory. Such people receive very little encouragement or reinforcement these days and they often have a lonely and solitary life to lead. But a day comes when their genius is absolutely necessary to make a transition to another stage of life. But a day comes when their genius is absolutely necessary to make a transition to another stage of life– for themselves or for someone in their environment. Just to know of this validity is a safeguard for such a person. Please be good to your own hermit quality or the born hermit in your circle of friends. If you have a born hermit as a son, don’t push him into Red Knight experiences but let him find his own forest way.

Who does the Grail serve?

I am searching for happiness, which is to say that I want the Grail to serve me. We ask this great cornucopia of nature, this great feminine outpouring of all the material of the world- the air, the sea, the animals, the oil, the forests, and the productivity of the world– we ask that it should serve us. But no sooner is the question asked than the answer comes reverberating through the Grail castle halls–the Grail serves the Grail King.

Translated, this means that life serves what a Christian would call God, Jung calls the Self, or and we call by the many terms we have devised to indicate that which is greater than ourselves.

Another language, less poetic but perhaps easier, is available. Dr. Jung speaks of the life process as being the relocation of the center of gravity of the personality from the ego to the Self. He sees this as the life work of a man and the center of meaning for all human endeavour. When Parsifal learns that he is no longer the center of the universe– not even his own little kingdom–he is free of his alienation and the Grail is no longer barred from him. Though he may come and go from the Grail castle during the rest of his life, now he will never be alien to it again.

One detail in the story is worth special observation: Parsifal need only ask the question; he does not have to answer it. Although it is the duty of the ego to ask a well-formulated question, he is not required to answer it. To ask well is virtually to answer.

Happiness

Rejoicing bursts forth in the Grail castle; the Grail is brought forth, it gives its food to everyone, including the now-healed Fisher King, and there are perfect peace, joy and well-being. Such a dilemma! If you ask the Grail to give you happiness, that demand precludes happiness. But if you serve the Grail and the Grail King properly, you will find what happens and happiness are the same thing. A play on words becomes the definition of enlightenment.

Grail:

Your goals and ambitions, the desires you have. Something eternal and beautiful.

Grail King:

The higher self, or the Self (the Grail King is sad and wounded, and then when Parsifal asked the right question, he rejoiced, and now heal-ed.) When your goals and ambitions align with your higher self, you will find happiness.

Parsifal:

the soul, going through the quest under the flow of the unconscious.

The energy moves from the consciousness to the unconsciousness when one is vulnerable and hurt. He goes through a lot of fights to get to the place where he is called hero, but he loses his Grail because he forgets to ask the question ‘who does the Grail serve?’ His ego blinds him from seeing the answer that is beyond himself. He is saying the Grail serves I. The Grial King remains unhealed. In other words, you remain unhappy. Until one day, Parsifal listens to the heed of the Hermit within and finds the shortcut to the castle. When you listen to your inner voice, the castle is never far away. This time he examines his own shortcomings and stays humble, and asks the question ‘Who does the grail serve?’ Your consciousness only needs to formulate the question, but is not required to answer it. The answer will reveal itself as you trust your own unconsciousness. The answer comes, the grail is here to serve the Grail King. You are here to serve the grail and the Grail King. The higher self that is beyond you and will see your life is to serve something bigger than yourself. The achievements and failures are not personal but just creative spontaneity of the Self.

The ‘Ten Oxherding Pictures” from Zen Buddhism

Image result for ten oxherding pictures

An identical theme is found in the Ten Oxherding Pictures. This is protraying the steps towards enlightenment. In the first the young hero seraches for the ox–his inner nature; in the second he sees the foot-prints of the ox; in the third he sees the ox. The series proceeds to the ninth picture in which the hero tames the ox, forges a peaceful relationship with it, and sits quietly surveying the scene. The question rises at this point–Behold the streams flowing, whither no-body knows, whither nobody knows; and the flowers vividly red- for whom are they? Author Mokusen Miyuki reflects that these words could be translated literally into “The stream flows on its own accord, and the flower is red on its own accord.” In Taoism it can mean ‘naturalness,’ an occurring of the creative spontaneity of nature, within and without. In other words, 自然 (Tsu-jan), an occurring of the creative spontaneity of nature, as the living reality of self-realization or the creative urge of the Self manifesting itself in nature.

The series of pictures culminates in the tenth when the hero, now perfectly at peace, walks unnoticed through the village streets. There is nothing extraordinary about him now except that all the trees burst into blossom as he passes by.

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I have a secret to tell you. 10th Oct 2015

I look for people who click with me and who are in their lows, try to love them, protect them, treat them well, change their perspective, and made them feel loved and strong.

  That’s what I thought I have been doing.

No need to be romantic, just listen closely, to your friends’ fears.

Don’t get scared.

Everyone have their own shit, maybe you have never encountered this type of mess before,remain calm and treat it like something normal to you.   Be patient because it’s called a mess for a reason,  it comes back again and again,and again and again. They told you because they trust you.

They told you because they thought, maybe you can change their mind.

They told you because they were testing you, whether you can accept their not-so-bright-sides.

 

Gently pat their heads, think about love,send them some love.

Remember to check on them from time to time, they will feel lonely sometimes, but don’t know they can talk to someone.

Just remind them something they like.

If it’s their birthday, buy them a present.

I keep notes on things they told me they want to have.

Sometimes I tell them my own fears as well, to remind them we are the same to a certain extent.

 

Sometimes I imagine taking caring of a kitten/puppy when I talk to them, I have to do everything gently, pat it, kiss it, play with it.

And hope, one day, it will grow.

 

Let’s hope for the best. But even if it doesn’t grow, or if it slips and falls, don’t panic,don’t get frustrated,remember what I told you. Be patient. Love is patient,maybe he or she is not ready for change, but they tried their best, they felt guilty, so don’t get angry to make them feel worse,< calmness is your new best friend.

Cry with them. If they are still with you, love them like you used to.

Let’s hope for the best.

 

****** This is a reminder for myself,

if one day I forget what I have been doing, if I lost my mind one day. This post will bring me back, to the most important thing humans can do, to inspire and love another human being.

 

It’s about the process of loving someone but not achieving anything.

 

Just go ahead and do it.

Loneliness and Emptiness

I welcome the loneliness and emptiness inside my soul. Looking for the tears that can carry me away. Take me back to the place where I am understood and welcomed.

When there are too much doing but no living, your life becomes empty. I seek books for answers.

When no one understands but you are determined to be different, you feel lonely. But life carries on. I still got meditation, trees and hypnosis.

I feel both lonely and empty. I am tired but I know I need to carry on. Tonight is the night, to admit this to myself. It is not that bad, things are tough. I want to cry but I can only look at you blankly.

That familiar loneliness, reminds me I am a separate entity from my parents, that I have my own free will and drive. Oh, loneliness. Can you show me something good out of this?

Oh emptiness, are you telling me I am learning so much every day? Are you reminding me I am a useful person? I just want to be myself. For once, let me sleep my days away.

I know freedom belongs to me. I know I deserve the respect and love I fight for. I know things will be better tomorrow. The only thing I know is faith. The only thing I need to know is faith.

My kind of Mantra

Fill yourself with love, imagine yourself holding someone in pain. Someone in physical pain, or emotional pain. Hold her/ him tightly, tell her/him you would take good care of her/him. Promise her/him. Generate the type of energy that is kind and loving, hug her/him, touch her/him. Practice it. Imagine yourself as someone strong, someone with scars and someone who understands. Someone protective and someone who is willing to take the responsibility to dig deep.

This is my kind of mantra. I will be here, for you, till we see the sun, and you are strong enough to carry one with yourself. My name is called trauma healing. I am just a tool in God’s hand. I use all my might to go through hard times with other people, I stay with their uncomfortable times so that they can find ease and peace and tranquillity on their own.

Grow a forest in your mind.

Lately, I have been crying a lot. Since I have been back to Hong Kong I felt like part of me died. Whenever I am free in my room I reminisce the days I was in England. The good old days, when I know what I was doing and what I wanted.

There have been days I dream of someone leaving me.  The dreams are like telling me, ‘There is no one else to take care of you anymore.You are on your own now.Your days in England have taught you enough to face whatever in front of you. So please be strong. Please be patient.’

Returning to Hong Kong is also like facing my old depressed self again. I go back to live with people who have once depreciated me. I go back to see the things I had once tried so hard but failed. I have learnt better but all these still hurts.

I started to build up a mental health system for myself. I look for a jogging trail, I look for healthy food, I look for inspirational and motivational people, and most of all, I look for solitude. It has been three months, I have found a jogging trail close to where I live, but I haven’t found a way to cook healthy food in this household. I have failed to find inspirational and motivational people. I felt like abandoned. I only found books, things I have once written down. I have to become my own motivation generator. Solitude is hard to find when you are living in a city and everyone is annoyed or complaining about something or someone.

From time to time I think humans aren’t meant to live in a city. Too many people are too much. Humans need personal space to be themselves. Humans need to have spaces where they can be disgusting and ugly, so they can have the space to show others their cheerful and positive sides. Hong Kong has gotten this all wrong.

I got a job working at a secondary school. The job has been meaningful but it’s not pointing me to the direction I am going. It’s a sidetrack. It’s my way to comfort my parents that I could be independent and live my own life. But it’s hard for me to accept that things aren’t alright. I need to go back to psychology and do a master. I felt stuck even though people around me are all telling me I am on the right track. It doesn’t feel that way.

I still remember the week before I left England, I was upset because I can foresee what’s upcoming. When I was jogging in the woodland trail in England.I prayed and asked God what I can do when I am surrounded by anxious people. There was silence for a long time. But then, after a long while, someone answered. A voice told me, you see the trees here? Yes, I said. Imagine yourself in this serene and peaceful setting. Come back to this place. Grow a forest in your mind. And you have it, relaxation and calmness.

In this tough times, remember to read and write.

From time to time, when people around me are not helping. The only thing that consoles me is books. That’s why I buy lots of books. Looking back, I was just looking for answers. Hoping that when familiar words are connected in a way that is unique, I will see the answers that I need. It’s all just therapy. My therapy for my loneliness.

I didn’t know the patterns when I was in England. Because the people around me were more of the friendly and sedate bunch, I bought fewer books. I didn’t NEED that. When I am back to Hong Kong, I started to see the patterns. I need to be surrounded by books. I needed answers. People around me don’t understand. They don’t understand why I am stuck. They think I am free and living happily.  I know I am not, but it’s hard for others to understand. They are like ‘dead hearts’ described in the song dead hearts by Stars. It’s hard to know that they are out there and they are people you used to know. It’s hard to know that they still care. They pretended they care but there is no action. They are dead hearts to me. Dead hearts are everywhere. They make me feel I am falling down. They make me sad, so sad.

When people around me are not inspirational or motivational, I see myself falling into a black pit that I know things won’t turn out great. I am crying inside. It’s like a foreseeable depression. So, I hold onto anything and everything. I remind myself of the days I was in England, I hold onto the books I have bought and passages I have written myself. Things I have posted on Twitter, Tumblr and here have been a strong pin for me. They are reminders. Reminders of values and aspirations I have, reminders of the ideal self I want myself to be, reminders of who I have chosen to be, and reminders that I have been blessed by my adventure in England. To all the people I have met, they all have taught me wonderful lessons. Though home still looks the same, something changed inside and it changes everything.

Do you think there’s a reason for everything?

This is not a very good question. Consciously, things can happen without a reason and i accept that as true. Arbitrary accidents could kill people and there is no way you can find a reason to explain why someone’s daughter is dead in a snap of fingers. Life is arbitrary.

But unconsciously, we humans are always looking for connections and meanings. I guess that helps us to survive in horrible times. It’s just how our brains work and i accept that as well. I will look for connections and meanings in everything, or better, we provide reasons and meanings for the things that happened. It’s not right or wrong. It’s just how our mind works.