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Home arrow News/Essays arrow Grow up, America! - Sept. 11th analyzed in Jungian terms
Grow up, America! - Sept. 11th analyzed in Jungian terms PDF Print E-mail
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by Cal Simone   
14 September 2006

"A collective problem, if not recognized as such, always appears as a personal problem... [T]he cause of disturbance is ... not to be sought in the personal surroundings, but rather in the collective situation." -- Carl Jung

* * *

Five years ago, the World Trade Center and the Pentagon were attacked. One week after the attacks, I had a vision for America that has turned out to be unique. It came from my subconscious; in this article it is termed "the unconscious" as described by Carl Jung. Through the vision, I realized that this nation is unaccountable and disconnected in ways that very few people think about.

In the week following September 11, 2001, I shocked friends and associates, as well as members of several internet discussion lists, with my claim that the attacks and response to 9/11 clearly revealed the country's disowned unconscious material.

I have the highest regard for the men and women who came to the need of those suffering, and the bravery and heroism to respond under attack. I see a people made of such stuff as can rise to the occasion in highly adverse circumstances. People who are very close to it, such as family members who lost loved ones, may not be able pull back and see the dance of the larger forces, and shouldn't, since they need to focus on their healing. My heart is with them, and always will be.

My perspective is that of a man who lives within the U.S. If you live outside the U.S., you have a likely advantage in having a perspective from outside the U.S. In this article, when I say "we", I am not suggesting that every person in the U.S. acts the same way or believes the same things. Rather, I refer to U.S. as a collective psyche. Additionally, I use the terms "America" and "Americans" as is prevalent in the U.S. to refer to the U.S. and its people. I intend no exclusionary disrespect to those living elsewhere in the Western hemisphere.

A radical approach

I moved from Washington, D.C. to the San Francisco Bay area in January 2005. Out here in northern California, there are meetings and gatherings each month that attempt to prove that the government was the instigator of 9/11, that the World Trade Center was demolished using explosives, that passenger planes did not fly into the WTC and the Pentagon, that the plane that reportedly went down in Pennsylvania didn't crash, that the buildings couldn't possibly have fallen straight down. I read regularly posts on email discussion groups that ask what are we going to do about the terrorists, or the government. And this month in the Bay area there will be numerous events that deal with this. Many of them intend to prove government complicity.

Various Americans believe that we ought to:

- Find out what actually happened on 9/11 (including who really did it)
- Protect ourselves against our enemies
- Eradicate the "evil" forces from the Middle East
- Convince those whose ideologies are opposite from ours to change
- Spread democracy throughout the world (by replacing all non-democratic governments)
- Share our views so that others adopt them (the kinder, gentler version of the previous belief)
- Let the conflict in the Middle East play out as a biblical prophesy

I donít deal with any of those here for two reasons: (a) Books and online discussions and analyses address many of these aspects. (b) On another level beneath the surface, 9/11 is about something more profound that what "they" the perpetrators did. My focus here is (b). None of what is offered herein is intended to invalidate or dilute the hard truth of 9/11. And whether you accept the media-promoted version, or you passionately promote a "conspiracy theory," what I say here applies either way.

My goal is for the public to attain a shift in perspective. The call to action that's needed might rather be in the form of stopping what we are doing -- a radical departure from "doing anything is better than doing nothing," a common American approach.

A regressed America

We became the most powerful country on Earth in a little over a century -- we're an infant country compared to nations and civilizations that have endured many thousands of years.

And yet, collectively, the U.S. has become younger and younger psychologically over the past several decades. Regressing from young adulthood, into adolescence, into childhood, America now teeters between an entitled 3-year-old, expecting to get whatever it wants whenever it wants, and a 2-year-old who sees only its own perspective as valid or important, the only one that matters or even exists. While the U.S. breeds some individuals with positive focus amongst the population, we are also a greedy, self-absorbed nation, distracted into the national obsessions of speed, money, youth, and feeling good.

James Howard Kunstler, author of The Long Emergency, makes the point that the American people childishly "wish upon a star," in effect, for improving their personal lives. They feel "entitled... to a supposedly non-negotiable easy motoring existence... to a particular outcome in life, apart from the choices we made and how we acted." (Oct. 5, 2006, New York Petrocollapse Conference speech)

Hurt and highly reactive, self-obsessed and self-medicated, America, child run amok, has itself become a threat to the well-being and to the very existence of humanity. Global opinion polls so indicate. (This is not to say that America is solely responsible for the problems of Western Civilization.) It's remarkable and sad that something that penetrated us so deeply did not wake us up to making mature choices. And to have a perspective that those in power aren't in some deep way intimately connected to "we the people" is short-sighted and naÔve.

Rather than "us" and "them," we are really one people, one race, around the world. We're all in this together, in the same boat. However, a Jungian principle is that energy patterns always exist with their opposites in balanced pairs of opposites, and Taoism teaches us that there is always an opposite for any concept or thing, as a unity of opposites; therefore, humanity also has its separateness factor. Americans have been manifesting more separateness after the 9-11 "we are one" honeymoon wore off.

To tell a 2-or-3-year-old simply to "grow up" is certainly unfair, but I speak to those who are mature -- and therefore receptive, if given some food for thought -- to the awareness that we are in such a young place in ourselves. One way to "grow up" is to acknowledge that we are not the only people in the world that matter or that we are the only "Americans."

One reason people may choose to be like children is that they are under the thumb of others and undergoing much stress -- along with the benefits of society such as Cheese Doodles, as Kunstler is fond of saying. So, as long as we keep choosing to live for others who are often undeserving of our respect, and we feed the present infantile system with our labor and taxes, how can we live a life of truth that will deliver us from war, manipulation, oppression and exploitation?

Given our challenges and the forces against us, it's natural that our collective accountability for the way 9/11 occurred (and was seen and dealt with) is not a matter of blame or fault, but rather ownership and mature responsibility.

Potential for distraction

In recent weeks, the movement to prove the government's complicity in the attacks has gained momentum. Worse, the movement is at risk of being a major distraction itself, for those who might address reality more holistically. Those in the 9/11 truth movement have a goal of "nailing the bastards in the White House." I'm all for bringing truth out, and bringing to justice any criminals who may have leveraged the events of that day to control and manipulate for personal gain. But those in power, rather than being afraid, may be loving every minute of this. Here's why:

Americans are deliberately distracted by corporate media/entertainment, as well as news events. It can even be said that wars serve to distract our society from economic justice at home, for example. So, if the 9/11 truth movement, in all its speculations and claims, captures the complete attention of activists who might better concentrate on dealing with other issues such as petrocollapse, then it can be said that 9/11 is a distraction. By the same token, the mass-media focus on the tragic attacks, while not digging into critical outcomes (including the Patriot Act and the Iraq War), we can argue that the whole subject of 9/11 is used as a distraction. Even a (rigged?) presidential election can be a huge diversion for an important segment of the population, sucking a tremendous amount of valuable and powerful energy from Americans, and particularly many activists.

The movement to impeach Bush and his cronies would be ill-conceived if the next-in-lines step in; they are all of one "club" or social system. What will happen if George Bush and even one or more of his circle are removed from power? Would not the hydra, the mythical multi-headed beast, sprout up a new head to replace them?

Many a 9/11 activist says, "Discovering the truth about 9/11 is the most important thing affecting Americans today." I often respond, "It also can be one of the most important distractions affecting Americans today" (besides TV addiction, etc.).

Why are we so distracted, and where is our energy really needed?

Some necessary groundwork: The basics

To help understand the deeper meaning of 9/11 and why it happened to the U.S., I offer the following:

- Three "energetic principles" derived from the work of Carl Jung
- A description of how projection works and how it relates to shadow (the hidden parts of our psyche)
- Examination of the collective psyche
- Explanation of why America has the current leadership in power
- A look at America's disowned shadow material
- Thoughts on the deeper meaning of 9/11
- An idea of where we're headed and what we can do now

A note about the energetic principles: The patterns and dynamics of a psyche are governed by a number of principles, some of which are similar to laws of physics. I have identified eight such principles and I offer three of them here.

Projection and shadow

Whenever we observe a behavior or a characteristic in someone or something that we found either (a) unacceptable, painful, or threatening to us when we were a child, or (b) loving, inspiring, or enviable, we respond with the emotional charge we felt back then in childhood -- anger, fear, sadness, joy, envy. From within that emotional charge, we take the entire persona of the person who did that behavior or characteristic back when we were small, and project onto the person or thing in front of us right now. We then interact with that projection, rather than the person or thing in front of us. I sometimes call this out-projecting.

The tricky part is, just because we're having a projection doesn't mean what we're seeing isn't true. It might be true, or it might not...we are simply unable to tell. From inside the projection, we can get caught in our childhood fixation (our complex). We can only see one perspective -- the complex's perspective -- and we react out of the childhood pattern, most often at an unconscious level. And then we act out of our reactions, believing that the projection is truly what's there.

The term shadow refers to what isn't seen or known, the parts of the psyche that we are unable to see in ourselves. Our disowned shadow consists of those aspects of what's not seen or known that have been purposefully repressed in childhood. As adults, this shows up in aspects of human existence or behavior that we judge unacceptable, that we don't like, don't know about, or don't want to know about. Our most profound projections are often those of our disowned shadow material.

Energetic principle #1: That which is disowned will continue to operate from the unconscious without our awareness.

From Jung, we learn that that which is disowned has power. If we don't acknowledge and claim our shadow material, we project it onto others, and our unacknowledged shadow repeatedly rises to meet us from the outer world. It's as if whatever we refuse to claim keeps coming to us, over and over, wanting to be claimed.

Collective psyche

Energetic principle #2: The types of energetic patterns that exist in individual psyches are the same types of patterns that exist in a collective psyche.

Just as each of us has a psyche, consistent of a collection of parts (frequently called sub-personalities), a collective likewise has but a single psyche, whose parts are the individual psyches of each constituent member. If you are able to recognize the patterns and dynamics of the unconscious, the types of patterns and dynamics you'll see in any psyche are the same, regardless of whether you're looking at an individual psyche or a collective psyche.

Collectives include the races, the genders, geographic areas, and nations, so the United States, as a single psyche, has behavior and characteristics that can be seen just what we can see in an individual. Collectives go through the same developmental cycles as individuals, have complexes, and have shadow material, just like individuals.

Just as you or I, as an individual, can regress into childhood states at times, so can a collective. This means that a nation can be in a regressed state.

If you observe a young child, he or she is often completely in one single energy in any given moment. The child can be 100% in joy, then hurt his or her hand, and suddenly be 100% in pain, or anguish, or terror. I call this getting swept. Collectives, too, can be prone to getting swept, particularly if the collective is regressed. A single energy can sweep through the people, often very quickly, like a riptide taking a swimmer out to sea. Profound examples of collectives being swept can be seen in viewing films of German hordes entranced by Hitler.

Why does America have these leaders in power?

Energetic principle #3: Leaders reflect the unconscious unmet need of the collective they lead.

In any collective, be it a religious group, a service organization, a corporation, or a nation, the power lies in the people, not the leader. When a collective carries a need that is not addressed, this brings about a leadership coming to power. If the collective owns the need, the leadership will be beneficent. If they disown it, which is likely if the collective is regressed, the leadership will need to take control in a parental way to balance out the unaddressed collective need by wielding power inappropriately. The greater the unmet need, the stronger the balancing force on the other side. Keep in mind that a regressed collective is more prone to being swept.

The U.S. government has successfully found ways to distract the American populace by giving us little fires (and some bigger ones) to put out. And while it's so easy, and often satisfying, to direct our anger at the government, I see our leadership simply reflecting our society's propensity to distract ourselves away from what is truly important at the deepest levels, from our deeper selves and our true nature. Itís as if the people want to just "let George do it," and thatís funny, given what the Presidentís name is. And he serves as a "Daddy" to regressed, inactive citizens. It's much simpler to project "father" on to our leaders than to be responsible for providing ourselves with what we need.

Our leaders systematically alienated us from most of the other nations of the world. What's amazing about this is that we simply watched it happen. As each nation moved out of accord with us, it seemed that we as a nation were okay with that. What does this tell us about ourselves?

We know unconsciously that resources are soon going to be scarce, and from the perception that there's not going to be enough to go around, we're distancing ourselves, trying to make our borders more secure.

We also isolate ourselves from our deeper selves. Robert A. Johnson, author of Inner Work, wrote, "The disaster that has overtaken the modern world is the complete splitting off of the conscious mind from its roots in the unconscious." He goes on to say that we operate from the false premise that we can successfully and fulfillingly live our lives only from the awareness and perspective of the ego, as if we had no unconscious or deeper self. As a collective, America leads the world when it comes to this.

A look at America's disowned shadow material

Return to that fateful day for a moment: On September 11, I lived a mile and a half north of the White House. My experience of that day was a rather different experience from most Americans. I learned about the events slowly, a bit at a time. (I didn't even know that the airplanes allegedly were passenger flights until after 5 PM that day.) Other than the specific form of the attack, I found none of it was surprising. As the day progressed, it was one of the most grounding days of my adult life. The exceptions were when Bush referred to the perpetrators as "evil doers" (which I found chilling), and the realization that we weren't going to wake up (for which I grieved).

The country was swept into a massive reaction, a blend of fear, anger, and grief. This reaction was not unexpected and completely appropriate, given the nature of the breach. Serious crimes were committed and, as a result, 2800 people died that day. The problem was with our acting out of that reaction, out of being swept. Within hours, there was talk about "getting the terrorists." By the next day, I was sensing a groundswell within the American psyche to push away the destructive forces. President Bush gave an evangelical speech about eradicating terrorism everywhere. The more of this sort of talk I heard, the more uneasy I became. In a few days, there were soldiers in camouflage at airports, and America was swept right into feeling perhaps safer.

One week after 9/11, I wrote: "I was sad that Americans wouldn't (or couldn't) connect what had happened with our own disowned selves. I'm afraid that our leaders will just be American policemen, who 'get their man,' and won't look at themselves as the place to change. I am afraid that we could try to make ourselves (or believe we can become) more invulnerable, placing more and more resources into the illusion that we call safety and security."

And we're going to work hard to hold on to our illusions. Our egos -- both the egos of many individuals and our collective national ego -- will fight to keep the system in place. The ego helps keep us away from the deeper reality and truth about ourselves. To paraphrase a quote from the movie The Matrix: "...many of them are so inured, so hopelessly dependent on the system that they will fight to protect it."

Whatever we out-project as saintly or evil exists within us. George Orwell's "1984" showed us a look at the future in which the objective wasn't to win the war, but to perpetuate it, by shifting and changing the "enemy." Movies that serve as modern mythology and prophecy, including "The Devil's Advocate," "Fight Club," and "V for Vendetta," are messages issuing forth from our collective unconscious, which is trying really hard to get us to see that the very things that we desire to eradicate are within us, are fundamental parts of ourselves: "Hey, America, remember me, I'm over here. I'm your inner Gandhi and your Mother Theresa, Saddam, Hitler, Bush, and your hero...and God. And we all need to express ourselves through you. Please notice us, love us, and find ways for us to serve."

Why do Bush, Saddam, Hitler, Gandhi, and Mother Theresa exist? To teach us more about ourselves. This goes beyond what we can see with our eyes, to a much more profound level. Everything is inter-connected; leaders are inextricably tied to the people they lead. To protest as if we can pretend that they have nothing to do with us is narrow. As our reflections, what do they say about us?

The deeper meaning of 9/11: Two opportunities

The events of that day are indisputable tragedies. Though often difficult to see, every tragedy, be it cancer or 9/11, can equally be a gift and a teacher for us. I see 9/11 as offering us two main gifts:

1. An invitation and opportunity for initiation into awareness and maturity.

In any initiation, such as birth or the passage from boy to man, there's always some degree of force required to break through the resistance. Within three days after 9/11, I began to see the attacks and U.S. reaction as a clear expression of such an initiatory force. I see this as the global psyche offering the U.S. a choice -- to accept the initiation as an opportunity to wake up, or not accept it and go back to sleep. (In "The Matrix," this is the moment of choice between the taking the red pill and the blue pill.) It's clear which choice we made.

2. A reflection of our collective disowned shadow material.

One of my main observations on 9/11 was that those who perpetrated the attacks were reflections of our shadow material, projected onto "them." After all, the perpetratorsí attack had in some substantial way been brought about by the habits and policies of the U.S. people and their government. The magnitude of America's emotional reaction was the indicator to me of what we were seeing.

What was reflected to us -- so disturbingly, deeply, painfully, larger than life -- was a major aspect of the negative side of our collective disowned shadow material. Most Americans saw the perpetrators (regardless of who they were) as violent, terrorist, unempathetic, sadistic, evil, arrogant, insane, uncaring of human life. Whenever we point the finger at someone or something, we are looking at our own disowned shadow material. Therefore, we are violent, we are terroristic, we are unempathetic, we are the evil we see, we are arrogant, we are insane, we are uncaring of life. This is because America does not take responsibility for its impact on the world as a mature adult human being would.

We are also peace-loving, constructive, empathetic, inherently good, respectful, reasonable, and see life as sacred and precious. But because we are already identified (over-identified?) with the "positive" traits, they aren't the traits that we disown.

The opportunity with 9/11 was to recognize that we are those things that we saw attacking us, that we are the perpetrators (be it Middle Eastern martyrs or secret military operatives). And after five years, we still don't see how "we" are "they." And until we recognize that, and find a way to integrate "them" within us, we will continue to be affected by them, and each time repeat our mistakes, both as a nation and individually.

To be clear, there's what we saw -- perpetrators did commit crimes (and should be brought to justice), and the trade centers did really come down, and people really did die. What we don't see is that this (i.e., we were attacked and we are stuck with certain leadership) happened in large part because we're not dealing with our shadow reflections. It's a matter of both at work. We need some balance, and in order to achieve it we must accept those shadow reflections and look at our own complicity in this.

Where we are

Over the last five years, I have been amazed, but not surprised, how little the U.S. has been able to grow from those moments. And I've been more disturbed by the general direction we've chosen to take since then, than I was when the original events happened.

There appears to be little realization in America about how 9/11 reflects what we ourselves carry and express unconsciously. There's almost no ownership. If 2-year-olds are running amok and reacting out of their hurts, there are lessons available to be learned. Is there a lesson in 9/11, or does a lesson only come from failing in Iraq and Afghanistan? Vietnam was a similar failure and a lesson, with even more innocent civilians killed. But America did not grow up after Vietnam, and has continued to regress. When the war in Iraq was starting, America got sufficiently swept in believing that the war was necessary, and was again swept when Saddam Hussein was removed from power, believing somehow that the world was safer, when the region was actually made less stable. The Iraqi people were the ones who were primarily affected by Husseinís removal.

Any intelligent analysis of 9/11 leads to oil. If we "follow the money," as the adage goes, all roads lead to the greed of the few. The War in Iraq has always been about the hoarding of resources controlled by those who arranged for the U.S. administration, and the oily British government, to be in power.

Most Americans seem obsessed by national security, and they find being concerned about matters outside the U.S. to be a bother. We only pay attention when we absolutely must, and then only see a limited view of events presented by the news media. We almost always accept it as accurate reporting, and watch it like a movie, with no active participation. While I've been amazed at the degree to which we hold tight to that pattern, I'm not surprised, because I sense no force in place within ourselves to shift this pattern in any significant way. If 9/11 didn't wake us up, I have very little belief that there is any force that could. Perhaps another kind of rude awakening, such as the transformation away from energy gluttony and general plenty, will initiate us into our next social and political reality.

American society is mainly threatened, not by terrorists, not by the U.S. leadership, but by the consequences of its lifestyle of convenience for the past sixty years, driven by an entitlement that life serve us, rather than realizing that we are here to serve life.

Where we're headed

There are at least a half dozen major cataclysms likely headed our way in the next 20 to 50 years:

- Peak oil. A significant enough decline in global oil extraction -- less than might be assumed -- when demand has so increased, spells disaster. Instead of drastic conservation we see attempts to keep our selfish energy appetites satisfied: The rendering of arable land into plants grown for biofuel could leave us short of food if the process really expands. Food already travels on average 1,500 miles to reach our tables, and will not be able to be transported to urban places where enough food can be grown to sustain dense populations. And even if it were possible to replace petroleum broadly, keeping in mind our dependence on plastics, fertilizer, and food transportation by the inefficient truck, the additional gap of a decade or two before a solution gets rolled out en masse, won't be in time to prevent urban collapse. The nation and most of the rest of the world is chasing a technofix instead of adjusting to ecologically/economic reality.

- Global warming. If a large polar ice sheet or shelf breaks off into the ocean, water levels will rise suddenly to cover most global cities. Once it occurs, there won't be time to re-settle the population. Also related to climate change are other natural calamities. Stronger hurricanes, as well as earthquakes, threaten heavily populated areas that are not prepared to cope with massive, long-lasting damage.

- Resource shortages. The American agricultural sector is running into topsoil depletion and aquifer decline. In the Middle East, villages fight over water rights on rivers that can't adequately sustain current population levels. Very few people, especially the mass media, call the situation of resource shortage an "overpopulation problem."

- Racism, unrest and war. Despite our best efforts to bring peace, the problems caused by racism are greater and more palpable than they were 40 years ago. And religious war is as prevalent today as ever.

- Disease. The widespread use of antibiotics results in more virulent and resistant strains of bacteria and viruses, bringing increasing possibilities of epidemics. The same happens with pesticides.

The most profound problem is that we don't know which of these is likely to strike or in what sequence. I've heard people say that we should pick the two or three most likely scenarios and prepare for them. This approach may be as incomplete as focusing only on 9/11 and its disputed perpetrators as the main political and social concern.

Whatís needed

For the short term, I want to see two things happen:

A. Begin to take ownership. This means recognizing that our reactions, born out of our projections, are still driving us today. This means doing the work to pull our projections off of the perpetrators, and do the sobering task of self-examination to discover our accountability, individually and collectively, for what happened on September 11. We are accountable not in every facet of the actual attacks, but, in not owning our full image -- including ourselves being violent, terrorizing, unempathetic, sadistic, arrogant, and uncaring of human life, and whatever we judge as evil -- if we look at the nationís military adventures replete with murder and torture. We failed to deal with the sources and causes of 9/11 beforehand when we could have prevented the disaster -- if the nation had owned up to its image and undergone fundamental transformation.

B. Look forward instead of back. America must disengage from the distractions that keep us from grappling with what is to come.

For the long term, given that we don't know in what order the above cataclysms are coming, the most important thing we can do is to learn how to be with whatever shows up. Unfortunately, between being reactive rather than proactive and a nearly total inability to be in stillness long enough to connect with messages from our unconscious, our regressed society is currently ill-equipped to be with whatever shows up. For America to be around in 20 years, we must grow up and do so quickly, learn how not to act directly out of reaction, and not to be so easily swept.

Returning to Jung's opening quote for this essay, about the problem being a collective one, we need to start doing collective psyche work, different from the efforts to wake up individuals. Very little such work presently exists; additional new work at the collective level must be developed.

From Jung, we can also see that that which is disowned will keep meeting us over and over again, so long as we continue to disown it. I support bringing criminals to justice, but this must be done very carefully. If we don't recognize the hydra as us as well, we will just keep having our disowned material be brought to us, over and over, perhaps in different forms.

A vision for our nation...and what I want to see

I'd like to conclude with the original text of my vision from September 18, 2001:

I'm gladdened by the opportunities that these initiators (AKA "terrorists") have given us from the events of last week. I call them "initiators" because this is a great teaching for us, a chance for us to pass through to something we haven't ever been. If you are open, amidst the tragedy and the tears, this is also a gift.

I'm hopeful that our country has a chance to open to its vulnerability. I feel joy that we have the opportunity to reconnect with the reality of the worldÖ its danger, its pain, suffering, and discomfort, as well as its joy and ecstasy.

Many indigenous peoples spend two-thirds of their awake time in communion with their inner selves and with the universe (that which is larger than they are), and they live life honoring their experience, rather than trying to change it. Indigenous peoples are intimately connected to their natural environment and work in harmony with the forces of the universe, rather than spending energy trying to bend the forces of the universe to suit their wants and comfort.

My vision is that we begin to join many of the much older nations of this world by doing the inner work necessary to develop into a mature, conscious nation, a place where part of every day of every man and every woman is devoted to the conscious practice of working on themselves, with intention.

I want us as a people to leave space in our lives to open to, relate with, and nurture parts of ourselves, every day.

I want us as a nation to begin to SLOW DOWN from this frenetic pace we've set up for ourselves. It's only been a blink in the eye of evolution that we've reached this pace, and the human body isn't engineered for the accelerated of lifestyle that most American undergo.

I want sufficient numbers of us to DO THE WORK to become conscious enough to learn that -- at least as much as we are mind, body, and feelings -- we are energetic beings, and that we can influence our country's direction and our leaders with the collective energy of our intent from an open heart, rather than shouting words that prematurely ejaculate from our knee-jerk reactions.

I want us as a country to RECONNECT WITH OUR ENVIRONMENT, earth and sky, and everything in between. I want us to honor and respect that life isn't safe or secure (and isn't "supposed" to be), that the goal isn't to aspire to always being comfortable or peaceful (and isn't "supposed" to be), and to humbly own that we don't have the level of control that we imagine we do. I want our nation to realize and live knowing that safety and security are illusions, and control is a fantasy.

I want us to open to, and come clean with, our ACCOUNTABILITY FOR OUR IMPACT on our world (other nations), on our nation (other communities), on our community (other people), on our loved ones (other projection screens), and on ourselves (our parts). I want us to individually and collectively own our accountability in creating the events of five years ago, both in terms of facts and energetics. I want us to have more responsibility with our power.

I want us to be willing to be BOTH a VULNERABLE AND a "POWERFUL" nation, to learn to sit between those two opposites, vulnerability and power. I want us to learn to sit with the unresolved as well as the unresolvable, the unknown as well as the unknowable, and the uncomfortable -- as well as the resolved, the known, and the comfortable.

Finally, I want us to learn to SIT AND WAIT with maturity as long as appropriate.

Much more can be said about all of the above. Additional information is available, that includes expanded descriptions of the groundwork concepts introduced above. I offer an expanded analysis of the American collective patterns and trends, my vision for America, and, for anyone wishing to "do the work," beginning instructions for how to begin the process of change.

With fierce love and in humble service,

Cal Simone
September 13, 2006, San Francisco, California

Further reading:

- Jacoby, Mario. The Analytic Encounter: Transference and Human Relationship. Inner City Books, 1984.
- Johnson, Robert A. Inner Work: Using Dreams and Active Imagination for Personal Growth and Integration. Harper San Francisco, 1989.
- Johnson, Robert A. Owning Your Own Shadow: Understanding the Dark Side of the Psyche. Harper San Francisco, 1993.
- Johnson, Robert A. Transformation: Understand the Three Levels of Masculine Consciousness. Harper San Francisco, 1993.
- Jung, C. G. Memories, Dreams, Reflections. Vintage, 1989. (Originally published in 1961)
- Kunstler.com
- Watts, Alan. The Supreme Identity. Vintage, New Ed edition, 1974. (Originally publlished in 1949)
- Whitmont, Edward C. The Symbolic Quest: Basic Concepts of Analytical Psychology. Princeton University Press, 1979.
- Zweig and Abrams. Meeting the Shadow: The Hidden Power of the Dark Side of Human Nature. Tarcher, 1991.

Links:

- Hear James Howard Kunstler's Petrocollapse speech: petrocollapse.org scroll down to audio segments and James Howard Kunstler.

- 9/11 truth movement: www.sf911truth.org

(C) 2006 Cal Simone. This essay may be posted elsewhere for nonprofit purposes, with a link to the original at culturechange.org.

Cal Simone is a writer and speaker influenced by Carl Jung and Jungís followers. Cal is not a psychologist; he is a "mystery scholar," shadow coach, and teacher. He has spoken on the impending end of the oil age, from the perspective of the American collective psyche, and on our relationship to powerlessness. He lives in the San Francisco Bay area and is a member of the Tribe of Men, which practices new methods of governance. He writes frequently for the New Warrior Journal published by the ManKind Project. Contact him through his website: www.healthesplit.org

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