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  • Writer's pictureMateusz Zalewski-Grzelak

Wounded child and the imperial self: Mass alienation in the Drama of Epochal Catastrophy.

There is always a great background to the processes that come to the fore in public, that break through the plutonic underworld’s gates and find a new home in daylight consciousness. The last few years have been extremely traumatic for a wide variety of populations around the world. These traumas have not shaken the individual or collective psyche, but in many cases they have disabled the self-defense systems of group psychic resilience. Psychic resilience for self-defense was already built on civilizational egregors infested with mental illness and all forms of aberrations that reactively transformed trauma potential into reality. ​ Civilizational “business as usual” did not allow new events to be squeezed into a socially constructed straitjacket. It split the resilience of the group and compensated for the dysfunction of psychic defense mechanisms in all forms of abominations that feasted on the emotional and cognitive swamp that boiled and produced new masks and dresses of desire, a whimsical paradise for alienated masses. It was triggered by populist sentiment, but was already in the waiting, as an inevitable consequence. What is yet to come is yet to be seen. ​ All forms of alienated, fragmented belief systems find justification in the spectacle. The right, the left, the right, the left are marching to the demise of the rigorist, deluded universalism of conservatism posing as the guardian of a new renewal, or to the carnage of the crippled, all-encompassing coddling of the relativist basement full of beggars, misfits and lunatics. The sensible middle no longer exists; it belongs to the old-timers. People who are still used to analytical, ethical, reasonable calculations are excluded from this world, invasive species rule their world. It is similar to the Asian concepts of reality, which are gladly used in the propaganda machinery. ​ The West has adopted it whether it is compatible with its “Thou shalt not harbor contradictions” or not, multiple, contradictory “truths” are tolerated, factioids and opinions are king. The shift from one reality to another to explain “facts” and “motives” is as fluid as the expert knowledge to navigate it. Such political technology introduced by populism on Western soil will quickly lose its capital in favor of Asian political business practices. The return to facts, reason and logic is impossible. It would require grand educational efforts in democracies that want to be democracies. ​ Anti-democratic education in “democratic” countries adds a more cynical smile to that. While the festival of kitsch is entertained by millions, it is enough to observe their emotions, their triggers, to pull the strings in a way that is loyal to the government, in whatever form that government might take. Fluid realities mean that the ideas upheld by Western countries are being replaced by ever newer forms of surrogates and deceptive doubles. Mass reprogramming of entire societies is taking place before our eyes, while at the same time trauma is spiraling out of control. Few are those who see through the portends of a monolithic lie. What are they to do? ​ When defense systems fail and the psyche of a group fears annihilation, it responds with fear. Managing that fear preserves the shock of further traumatization. Stoking fear while playing the solution has given birth to the “good father” complex in such societies deprived of thinking and resilience, which plays into the hands of petty autocrats, dictators, and “fathers of nations.” However, when a tipping point of fear hits the self-defense mechanisms, it overrides them and fragments the individual and group psyche. This schizophrenic factor manifests itself in alienated individuals who compensate in pockets of belief and information that may seem completely derealized. ​ They are not “fixed,” but simply fill the empty spaces of their fragmented psychic structures with randomly distributed content (nearest pleasure principle resting point) that reinforces their madness. It is always the internalized representation of the enemy, real or false, of the perpetrator of the group trauma, that moves forward. They can be typical, like “the Jew or the Nazi,” they can be archaic, like “the black or the foreigner,” or archetypal “the forces of evil or the wicked witch.” When the group psyche fragments, it conjures up a false self that evokes all forms of symbols of unity, nationalisms, populisms, radicalisms, fundamentalisms, anarchisms to compensate for the loss of continuity in the impossibility of individuation from the fragmented psyche. ​ The expression of the healthy person hibernates and is protected by the “demons of the external world” that prevent it from being rediscovered and nurtured from the beginning. Rarely does anyone return to the pre-falseness stage to rebuild from their authentic being. There are more psychological “no’s” than “yes’s.” The barrier tortures the true self and feeds the false image, the contrast deforms the soul, mind and heart. This is the way the world ends, not with a bang, but with a whimper. ​

Selected Bibliography: ​

Singer. 2004. The Cultural Complex: Contemporary Jungian perspectives on psyche and society. Taylor & Francis, p.18 ​

Wolferen, Karel van. 1993. The enigma of Japanese power people and politics in a stateless nation, p. 8

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