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I am technically a registered DEM but I am an avid supporter of alternative political views and/or social projects aimed at the restoration of real democracy in America today which of course means social justice through re-recognition of the fact that social property,i.e. commonwealth can exist happily and simultaneously with private property. Let the Revolution begin!

I am a fifty-seven year old graduate student at the University of Central Florida: Daytona Beach Campus who is indebted to one of his MSW program instructors- Dr.Jane Allgood for introducing him to the Daily Kos. As this is a decidely political type blog I will try to confine myself to a primarily political and/or socio-economic frame of reference. I hope that what I have to write in my diary may be of use to some interested parties and I also hope that it might be somewhat theraputic for me. It's not always easy to be honest in regard to one's thoughts,feelings, and emotions where politics or culture come to bear. More often than not most people-according to such renown social theorists as Eric Fromm are more interested in "conforming to the will of annonomous authority" however they may percieve it which of course means sucking up to power,i.e. being a bootlicking browntongue,sychophant,etc. Not that I myself am totally free from this psycho-social deformity which constitutes the major malaise of our era- but as I am always usually aware of such human tendencies I frequently find myself swimming against the major tide of public opinion either in the classroom, the local community, or society at large. As Fredrich Nietzche is reported to have said-"That which doesn't kill you makes you stronger." I try to live by that philosophy which I suppose is just another way of stating the old Quaker axiom about speaking "truth to power". Probably a major influence in this general attitude toward life comes from my having been named after St.Stephen, the martyr(my middle name), and having been bought up in a highly devout Roman Catholic family. I had nine years of Catholic education where I heard stories in Religion class about St.Stephen, the martyr and how he maintained the spiritual/moral law of "speaking truth to power" even in the face of death. Since moving to Florida in 1996 I have been making an effort to go by my first name-Charles rather than my middle name Stephen that everyone in my previous life up North knew me by. Make off it what you will a lot of that had to do with trying to honor my maternal Grandfather-Charles J. Kern who I was named after and was probably one of the finest male role models that one could ever hope to emulate. I have fallen far short of the standard that he set with his exemplary life. The name change however is my own private way of remembering him and honoring as best I can.

Originally posted to Charles Knause on Tue Jan 29, 2008 at 09:15 AM PST.

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Comment Preferences

  •  Welcome! n/t (1+ / 0-)
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  •  are you ok? (0+ / 0-)

    your tip jar is missing! Did the little professor hide it?

    Catholics have Rome, Muslims have Mecca, evolutionists have Galapagos. Lineatus

    by TexMex on Tue Jan 29, 2008 at 09:25:54 AM PST

  •  The Sacred Band & The Sacred Bond (0+ / 0-)

    It never occurs to people that the group values that they ascribe to or at least claim to ascribe to have not as they may incorrectly assume been in place since time immemorial. Rather, it is usually just the opposite , i.e. that the values-moral or otherwise that they hold so dear are more often than not of quite recent vintage historically speaking. The idea of gays being in the U.S. or any other modern military would not have been seen as unusual or odd at all to the ancient Greeks. Probably the most famous of all the ancient warrior cults of the ancient world was the Theban Sacred Band. These were what we would call gay/homosexual men(in spite of the fact that such labels don’t fit the mentality of the ancient world)  who pledged their lives to their lover/comrade in arms and fought to the death in the face of legendary odds. They were truly the dogs of war and the hounds from hell in the ancient world and so diametrically opposed to all conventional wisdom or ideas that we have about such things that it is almost practically impossible to speak about it in terms that people today can understand. The fact that they were the most professional and feared military force of their era demonstrates the relevance of C.G. Jung’s famous statement that over time psychologically speaking everything eventually turns into its opposite.
    Our image of modern gay life is therefore hardly how the ancients may have thought of it. It’s my understanding that there was no stigma that attached to the kind of life lived by the Theban Sacred Band indeed it was celebrated as an ideal form of man to man social bond in an era where marriage as we know it was also as sacred a bond as the Band. So what has changes since then? It is that we- the West- have lost contact with our most important traditions. We have become cut off from the root of our own history that should have sustained us, and turned into a civilization of mass produced automatons marching in unison to the same mass produced norms and values that in a lot of ways are the exact opposite of what our ancient forbearers would have preferred and indeed maybe the social values that they themselves may have in some way epitomized by their chosen lifestyle.
    My own personal values are without a doubt as shaped by the era that I have grown up in as any one else’s. However, having the benefit of history (and anthropology) on my side I can see that there are other human relationships as important as marriage that have existed down through time and that maybe too narrow a view on the part of all interested parties to this debate keeps us from seeing that maybe the answer is indeed not obvious but if we use history and science as our guide surely something more reasonable and serviceable to all may eventually evolve. In certain sub-Saharan African societies having what we would refer to as a "lesbian" lover is looked upon as part of the normal maturation process for teenage girls and not to have such a same sex lover at the appropriate time in one’s life would be looked on as odd an indeed not conforming to an important social norm. Certain kinds of sororities of our own era may be a kind of survival of this ancient custom within our own culture. It was the viewpoint of the ancient Egyptians that not to have lived life as fully as one should have was the greatest sin of all. Indeed according to the ancient Egyptian Book of the Dead all who die and face judgment before the Devine authority will have to confess to the sins that they failed to commit in their lives while on earth.
    Can it possibly be conceived of by the proponents of same sex marriage that indeed marriage as it has always existed has been defined by most societies (with some notable exceptions) as a sacred bond between a woman and a man? Can it possibly be conceived of by the so-called religious fundamentalists that other such sacred social bonds have existed and still do exist in an unacknowledged manner and that such same sex social bonds should have the same legal standing as marriage?  Can it be indeed possible that there is as much conformity within the gay/lesbian community in regard to making the marriage issue the touchstone of credibility with and within that community as there is conformity without in regard to the very selfsame marriage question, i.e. that no other possibilities are possible? Limitations in thinking are self-imposed and only by creatively reframing such a question can a workable solution be found.

  •  Kennsington (0+ / 0-)

    I lived in the city of Philadelphia for ten years before moving to Ormond Beach. While there in Philadelphia I worked part-time as a fundraising consultant for an organization called Funds for Progress. The owner of the company rented office space in a Hispanic social service agency that was associated with La Rasa, which was were we did all our necessary office type work. Other than that we worked out of our homes and used our own phones to call donors. Although I did not work specifically for the social service agency I did have a fair amount of contact from time to time with their clients who were young Hispanic teens-mostly Puertoricanos/as. The purpose of the agency was to do outreach and counseling with these high school teens with the purpose of getting them into a matriculated college degree program after graduating from high school. I suppose that maybe many of the young men and women in question had a lot of knowledge about gang activity in their neighborhoods in the Kessington/Fishtown area were I lived and worked as the Latin Kings were quite active in this area. They were however probably the most exemplary young men and women I have ever known especially considering the conditions of their upbring and social conditions existing in Philadelphia at that time. It was not unusual or unheard of for young Hispanic men to be killed in the all white catholic blue collar neighborhood where I lived for about six years before deciding that owing to my own affiliation as a race traitor my days on earth were probably quite numbered if I stayed in that neighborhood made up of mostly eastern European and Irish types.
    Freidrich Nitsche is reputed to have coined the phrase- "That which doesn’t kill you makes you stronger". I think that I am a better, and a stronger person for having gone through what I went through as a result of living through this experience. I have some deep seated understanding and appreciation as to why ghettoized youth- such as the exemplary young Hispanic youth who I knew from my association with Funds for Progress found it necessary to associate themselves with a gang such as the Latin Kings or any other kind of gang. It was not just a matter of respect but also a matter of personal survival and unless you have lived the life then you really don’t have any real understanding about what such a life is all about. Many, indeed most, Italian American gangs began the same way- and not without a reason. In Italian American circles they refer to such a person who has a know affiliation with La Cosa Nostra as "a made man". That is a telling and important phrase because it connotes in a few words what the essential difference is between men and women. Girls grow up to become women through the natural process of maturation whereas men have to be made- it is not a natural process but rather more like an initiation into the rights and obligations of manhood that no one can really understand except another "made man". That is why fathers are important because in all traditional societies they play the pivotal role in turning boys into men. In an anti-traditional society such as our own where minority communities in particular are looked on and treated as conquered territory traditional father son relationships no longer exist. Hence the need for the gang to fulfill a basic social and maybe biological need.

  •  My Story (0+ / 0-)

    The Ghost in my Past

    I would like to call my family autobiography 700 Lees because that is an address in Collingswood, New Jersey that means so much to me and has so many memories for me. It was the home of my maternal grandparents and the full address was 700 Lees Avenue. My maternal grandparents met in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania when they were young adults. My grandfather came from a very strict Roman Catholic family and lived on Carlyle Street in South Philadelphia for many years, indeed all the memories and stories that I ever heard in regard to his family centered on that two story brick row house there in South Philadelphia. He attended prestigious Roman Catholic High which was a catholic boys preparatory high school located in Center City Philadelphia that no longer exists except for the very beautiful and unique granite building that serves some other purpose now.  My grandfather’s name was Charles Kern and he was the second oldest of six children. The oldest was Frank then Charles followed by Catherine, Larry, Mary, and Marty. All the boys were trained by their father as butchers/meat cutters to work in the family meat business that was located across the Delaware River in Camden, N.J. - North Camden to be more precise. Today North Camden is a run down drug and rat infested ghetto shooting gallery run by various competing drug posies. As a welfare worker in my early twenties I often had to travel to that area to interview welfare clients in their home. It was an unforgettable experience and a formative one as it helped to develop, in its own special way, the revolutionary Marxist/Leninist/Trotskyist perspective that I embraced at a later stage of my life. I am very thankful for those interesting, thought provoking, and "mellow yellow" years of my early working career because they revealed to me a stark and sad reality that I had never seen before but one that was also beautiful in a strange, sad, mellow sort of way; because showed me a deep and committed sense of love and caring for the fate of others that I found amongst the most dedicated caseworkers, social workers, and aids that I found truly inspiring and that I have tried to carry with me all my life.
    After leaving Roman Catholic High School, my grandfather entered the seminary to study for the priesthood. I guess he had second thoughts about that as he left to marry my maternal grandmother Tamah Hewston. The fate of the Hewston family became intertwined with the Kern family through the divine workings of the neighborhood system as it functioned back then in the early part of the 20th century in urban America. In many ways it must have been a colorful era. Tamah met Charles because Frank met Betty who had a friend named Cass, i.e. Catherine who was the sister of Charles and it’s all so complicated and silly that I still can’t make much sense of it myself in spite of the fact that it’s a story I have probably heard at least twenty times before. The gist of it all is that the brother and sister of one family- the Kern family- married the brother and sister of another family- the Hewston family and everybody really did live happily thereafter!  Tamah Hewston married Charles Kern and Cass Kern married Walter Reese who was Tamah’s brother by the previous marriage of her mother, Ida Palmer. Ida Palmer’s first husband was a man by the name of Reese whom she divorced. She latter married Alexander Hewston who was an itinerant blacksmith. Tamah was born in 1901 and as a young girl she sailed from Philadelphia on an ocean going paddle wheel steamer to Florida, up the St. John’s River to Fruitland Park where her father Alexander built a small one room house for his family. When she was 97 years old my grandmother described how her father who was a dowser found and drilled a well for the family. Alec, as he was called, was a hard drinking man who often physically abused his wife and caused Tamah much personal shame as a child. Indeed her adult personality was very much influenced by the shame she felt as a result of having to see her father in such a poor drunken condition.
    When I was just a young boy of six or seven both my mother and grandmother worked. My mother worked in Camden for RCA and my grandmother in Philadelphia for the Pennsylvania Manufacturers Association. I went to school in Collingswood and was given a key to let myself into the house after school let out. My mother and grandmother didn’t get home until 6 or sometimes 7pm. I was afraid to go into the house by myself because I thought that it was haunted. I was especially terrified of the basement. As a result I usually huddled outside often in the freezing cold behind an evergreen bush so no one would see me. I remember how terrified I was and somehow knowing deep down inside that for some strange reason this was going to be a defining kind of experience for me. It was only many years latter that I learned about one of the deep dark secrets of our family that no one liked to talk about because it was the source of so much pain. I learned that indeed 700 Lees was indeed haunted! It was haunted by the sad and mournful ghost of Alexander Hewston who had hung himself in the basement many years before. My grandfather Charles had found him there in the basement not quite dead and taken him down. He was bought upstairs and where he died two days latter. Alec and his wife Ida had helped my grandparents- Tamah & Charles buy their first and only home in the suburbs and moved in with them. Pop as he was called had changed his ways many years earlier and was very remorseful about the way he had treated his wife, who he loved very much, during his drinking days. He live on a very small type of adult old age pension benefit of some type that enabled him to buy his personal needs such as pipe tobacco and such and thus not be a burden on his daughter and her husband Charles. The precipitating event in Alec suicide was the denial of this small pension/benefit because of the fact that he was living with his daughter. Many years latter when she was in her late 90’s Tamah got very teary when talking about her father and when I asked her why she was crying she said with some difficulty that she had never told her father that she loved him before he died. It was a poignant moment because it was the last chapter of a long, long family and human saga of sorts pregnant with social implications of the worst sort. If the working class of this or any other country ever had a chance to write its own history in contradistinction to the semi- official myth that passes for history, it would be a revelation with such impact that people would be truly changed through the telling of it. I have heard that A Peoples History of the US by Howard Zinn is an attempt at this but as I have never read this work I am unable to comment on it.
    My own personality has been more influenced in a shamanistic sort of way by my early experiences with the forces of the unconscious. That is why I have always loved and been so devoted to the life work of Carl G. Jung, in whom I found at long last a kindred spirit. The mind of nature is what the unconscious is and it speaks to us in our dreams. It may even from time to time be the voice of God himself! It is a vision of not only what has been but what will be. My early life was filled with bizarre dreams and visions that I once thought were only crap but they have sustained me all my life and I know now that it is out of such things that the world considers dross that the stone with the sword in it can be found. I don’t know when I stopped being afraid to be alone at 700 Lees. I spent many happy days during high school alone and thinking there to myself before I ever learned what happened there before I was born. In my opinion Alec is at peace now. I can feel that it is so.
    The Other Side of the Story
    Sam Hoey came over to America from Northern Ireland with his father in the latter part of the 19th century. They bought a farm in Milford, Delaware; the Southern most county of Delaware- the one that actually succeeded from the Union and joined the Confederacy during the civil war. Sam was my great grand-dad on my father’s side whose young wife died in childbirth with the youngest child of the clan- Joe. The oldest was Walter J., known as "Doc"; then Jenny, then my paternal grandmother Uarda , known as "Hap" then came the twins Carl and Anne, known as "Moonie"; then Mabel, known as "Pete"; then Joe and George. That makes nine. Saddled with the sudden unplanned responsibility of raising nine young children on his own, Sam promptly had himself a nervous breakdown but eventually got his life somewhat back together again; however he never remarried. The children for all practical purposes raised themselves while Sam took care of the farm. It was a chicken and egg farm although I think they also raised some food crops for their own use. Schooling took place in a one room schoolhouse with one teacher for all the various grades/ages being educated there.
    Life on the farm was good but it could only provide a living for so many and the girls migrated north to the Philadelphia area. The first job right off the farm that my grandmother was able to get was a job in Camden, N.J. working for the Whitman’s Chocolate Company. Her job was to take her finger and make curly cues on all the chocolates as they came down the conveyor belt. I remember seeing and smelling this memorable candy factory when I was a boy. It was on Haddon Avenue which was one of the main thoroughfares of Camden and one could smell the pleasant aroma of fresh chocolate for miles around. The young Hoey girls all lived at the same boarding house where they slept and had their meals. My paternal grandmother was a tall well built blond who was definitely very "hot to trot", i.e. the typical framer’s daughter of folkloric appeal. Unfortunately however she got her self involved and pregnant as a result of a romance with a World War I doughboy who was something of a looser. Family legend has it that she used to beat him up on such a regular basis that he decided to haul ass out of that sorry situation and left her with a young son to raise on her own. She settled down in Collingwood, N.J. where she and young Donald, my father, lived on Center Street, which was a small little street of brick row houses in a town famous for its Victorian style mansions. Their next door neighbor was Wesley Saul who eventually married Mabel. I knew him as Uncle Wes. Donald was a first rate track and field athlete as well as an all star baseball player at Collingswood High School where he met my mother Mary Kern. They were part of a larger group of teens who all sort of hung out together and did the kinds of things that teens did together in the 1940’s. They did stupid stuff like horse back riding, going on "hay rides", dances and stuff that seems so archaic that I am embarrassed to even mention it but I do mention it because I think that they were all part of an era that was so much kinder and gentler and more humane in so many ways and that is why we are sort of almost embarrassed to remember and recall their naïve simplicity that contrasts so starkly with the harsh competitive and overly vicious reality of today’s youth culture.
    World War Two seems to have made little impact on the lives of my prospective parents other than the fact that when my mother was in Catholic grammar school she was given a soldier to pray for. She told me about this not to many years ago after mentioning that she had run into "her soldier" somewhere. Since I was a little startled by this she went on to explain what she meant by that. My mother graduated for high school in 1946 and still attends the regular reunions that her classmates hold on a regular basis. I graduated from high school in 1968 and have never attended such an affair and doubt that I ever will. This, I think, is not so much a comment or comparison between individuals as it is a comparison between generations. I will really miss them and their generation because I think they bought something unique and special to this world that my generation seems incapable of. I think that we have bigger issues in just trying to survive in the midst of a developing social catastrophe of global proportions, however their world was a simpler world and it’s their simplicity of spirit that I will miss most.
    Donald Knause and Mary Kern married in May of 1950. I was born in September of that year. My parents moved to Washington, D.C. where my father had gotten a job with some federal agency. When I was three or four months old I was sent up North to live with my aunt Catherine and Uncle Walter until I was 18 months old. The official cover story that has been circulated in family legend is that this was done because my parents were living in an unheated apartment at the time and my mother was very worried that I would get sick as a result. I have always had my doubts about this story and think that it may have had more to do with some sort of an emotional/psychological breakdown that my mother suffered at that time and that she is still unable to speak openly about. I have never tried to press her on this as I am sure that she had her reasons for doing what she did and I think that I would be able to understand and appreciate the nature of the personal crisis that she found herself in at that time. According to the Object Relations School of Psychoanalytic thought attachment disorder is often the result of an infant having been separated from its birth mother at such a young age. Abandonment has always been a major issue in my life but consciously that has more to do with the actions or lack thereof of my father than anything that my mother may have or may not have done- or at least so it might seem!
    My father’s mother owned a house on the White Horse Pike in Audubon, N.J. and after leaving Washington, D.C. that is where my parents ended up. My mother who was in her early twenties was very unhappy there as she fought constantly with my paternal grandmother who she thought was an immoral loose woman because she slept naked all the time and sought to control my father. The house was a duplex with my parents living downstairs on the first floor and my loose living, hot to trot, farmer’s daughter grandmother living in the upstairs apartment. My mother was the product of an overly devout Roman Catholic upbringing that found it difficult to make any compromise in regard to religious matters. As a result she had gotten my father, who had been raised a Baptist, to convert. One of the jobs he had been able to land after coming back North, probably at my mother’s insistence, was a very good and promising position with the oil company Succony Mobile. His immediate supervisor was a woman who took a great deal of interest in his personal life. When she found out that he had converted to Roman Catholicism she had him fired for not having consulted her first in the matter. That was how things were done back then in the business world I suppose. It was a different kind of a social environment where such things as that could be done with complete and utter impunity. According to my mother this was one precipitating even of a long period of instability on my father’s part that eventually ended in separation three years latter and then eventual divorce.
    My Grandmother got a job working for the State of New Jersey at the capitol in Trenton. As a result she sold her house on the White Horse Pike in Audubon and bought another in Trenton. My parents moved to Trenton as well where they found an apartment in a newly constructed public housing project called Donley Estates. It was there that my father developed into a full blown party animal whose only ambition in life was to get laid by as many women young or old who would have him while my mother was out working and trying to hold a family together. My younger and only brother was born while we were living there in the pubic housing project in Trenton. I have very vivid memories even to this day of our life there in Trenton, N.J. even though I was only 3 or four years old. I can even remember one particular re-occurring dream image from those early years. It was a kind of image of a vast torchlight parade of thousands and thousands accompanied to the sound of metal cleated boots on cobblestones of some sort. It was a terrible, thunderous, and overpowering image that I believe was somehow connected to N.S.D.A.P. rallies in Nurnberg, Germany prior to the war. I can’t explain it any other way. I only know that I had many very strange experiences as a child that over time through an understanding of psychology, especially Jungian dept psychology, I have been able to somewhat understand. It was a kind of hypnogogic image that appeared to me on a number of occasions and maybe somehow was influenced by something that might have been playing on the living room television set initially(maybe) and then became a regular re-occurring thing. 1953 was only eight short years after the end of the most horrific expression of barbarity that the so called "civilized" world had ever seen up to that point of history and the echoes of it were still in the ether at least in a very real sense for me! I was also used to having aural hallucinations that occurred when I was very, very tired which leads me to believe that they also were a kind of hypnogogic event. That however came some years latter when I was maybe 9 or 10 years old. I had this strange ability to turn on a kind of honest to goodness real radio of sorts in my mind and hear in perfect clarity whatever song I wanted to hear. It seems that I only had this unique ability when I was very, very tired which is why I believe it was a kind of hypnogogic thing. Many years latter in adult life I experienced a similar phenomenon while working at a Daytona Beach condo community called the The Towers. This was after 9-11, and I worked the 11pm to 7am shift. Frequently I would doze of in the wee early hours of the morning. I was always suddenly and rudely awakened by this terrible and unbelievable loud crashing noise that no one else was ever able to hear. I was so completely and totally blown away and puzzled by this whole phenomena that I actually thought for a while that this building was haunted by some sort of strange poltergeist until I learned about the hypnogogic state that occurs prior to deep sleep during which such things can occur.
    My earliest memory of my grandmother’s first home on Adelaide Street in Trenton involves an incident with a cousin by marriage. My grandmother had met and married a widowed Trenton police officer by the name of Ray Walter. He had two sons, Raymond, Jr. and George, by his previous marriage. Ray, Sr. was a good hearted, jovial, and fun loving sort of guy with all sorts of bizarre and strange folksy ways that were an endless source of amusement for my brother and me. He was a rather square build husky sort of guy who ate with such complete and total abandon that you would think that he had never seen food for two months prior to this meal. He called potatoes "taters" and had all sorts of goofy silly ways that sort of took the edge off his being a cop. Nobody ever felt threaten with Pop-Pop Ray around which is why everybody loved him. Family legend has it that I was so adverse to going to the barber to get my hair cut, as many young children are, that Pop-Pop Ray had to make an arraignment to pick me up in his patrol car to take me personally to the barbershop because that was the only way that they could get me to get a haircut!  
    Both of Pop-Pop Ray’s sons, Ray, Jr. and George became Trenton police officers, however, George did not last that long in the job and Ray, Jr. was forced out as a result of being a crooked and corrupt cop who probably had to make a choice between criminal indictment, being fired, or just resigning. As I understand it is was the latter of these three alternatives that he chose. Ray, Jr. was a racist bigot who enjoyed beating up black men with complete and total impunity under the cover of his uniform which is how he probably got his sorry ass in hot water. He eventually became a rather pathetic alcoholic. He was married to a very nice and attractive lady named Ilene. They had a young son by the name of Raymond. He was an only child, and like any other only child was doted on and spoiled and thought he could do no wrong. I think that even at that very young age he had absorbed some of his father’s underhanded sadistic ways without even knowing it. When sitting on a rather high concrete porch at my grandmother’s house on Adelaide Street he pushed me off for no reason whatsoever- just because he thought that it would be a fun thing to do. It was about a six foot fall onto a concrete driveway but as I fell backward onto that driveway and landed on my face in was a three year old boy’s initiation into another aspect of living that was completely unknown to me prior to that event. It showed me that this world could be a cruel and vicious place and that senseless violence could strike at any moment for no reason at all and that there was nothing that we could do about it! Life was not logical and it was not nice!
    4 West Palmer Avenue
    After my mother left my father with her two small children she went to live for about a year with her oldest sister in Collingwood, New Jersey. Some of my earliest memories are tied to these years. There was enough stability established at 4 West Palmer Avenue so that I could attend kindergarten at the James A. Garfield School. This was an old pre-WWII type school building that is still in use today. West Palmer Avenue was a shady tree line street of semi-detached homes  built in the 1920’s or 30’s. My mother’s oldest sister Patricia or Pat as she was called was an R.N., i.e. a Registered Nurse who had done her training at West Jersey Hospital in Camden, N.J.- the same hospital that I was born in. She was very dedicated to her work. She passed away as a result of multiple  mialoma, i.e. cancer of the bone in 1996. There were over 700 people at her funeral which was a fitting tribute to a person who had touched so many lives. She was a very kind and loving person, however as I remember her growing up, she could be very strict about certain things. There was a lot of emotional/psychological turmoil in her life related to her marital problems. I think that she improved remarkably with age as a person. She was only 69 when she died and the tragedy of it was that she had spent her entire life seeing that all sorts of people got the medical care they needed but when the time came when she was in desperate need of medical care she was denied the care she needed in an effort to save costs for the HMO that she belonged to. This event spoke volumes to me about the nature of all class divided societies where the means of production are controlled by the lucky few and the rest of us are expected to serve obediently as their labor commodity. The need to put profits before people was what killed my aunt.
    When I was a small boy maybe 5 or six and maybe still living at 4 West Palmer Avenue I had to have a tonsillectomy. My aunt traded off hours with another R.N. so that she could be on duty at the time so as to see to it that I was made more comfortable in what for a 4 year old was a very scary situation. That was the kind of person that she was! She lived her life for other people more than anyone else that I can think of. It was part of the family legend that she had been a little wild as a teenager and that my grandparents had sent her off to some place in upstate New York for a few summers where she worked as a waitress at a fancy resort and also lived there for the summer. For some reason that experience seemed to get a lot of the wildness out of her, so the story goes.
    My mother was the second born daughter out of four but was the first to marry. My brother and myself were the first two grandchildren and my Aunt Pat and Uncle Ed’s oldest son Eddie was our regular playmate at 4 West Palmer Avenue. We were all very close over the years as a result of having lived together there for some time. Eddie was unique in that he did not seem to have the rough ways of my brother and myself. He eventually married went into business with another cousin and was quite successful. He was killed quite unexpectedly in an automobile accident in 1992. It was a terrible shock for his family. He and his wife had two small children at the time who are now college age adults. Lisa, his wife, has never remarried. It was four years latter that my aunt, his mother, also passed away. Eddie was the first in his family of five to marry and his and Lisa’s wedding which had been paid for by her family was a really way-cool affair. I suppose some people would say that it was a typical Italian wedding but I do not like the idea of stereotyping people and think that it is unfair to do so. Needless to say this marriage was one that was not only between two people but between two families. It bought many disparate people together in a way that only a marriage can do. That was why Eddie’s death was such a tragedy because his marriage to Lisa had bought  two different families together in such a complete way. In that sense the tragedy was complete!
    The important thing about life at 4 West Palmer Avenue was that it introduced me to a whole range of playmates my own age who I can still remember even to this day. I still can vaguely remember Janice the pretty young girl across the street who was maybe one or two years older than myself with whom I experienced my first true encounter with the opposite sex and the nature of such natural attraction. Then there were the Shuster boys who lived next door and it seems many others. And of course there was the very strange and tormented Patrick Lippincott who lived down the street with his spinster aunt who was not allowed to play with any of us "roughnecks". Patrick, who was not only strange looking as a result of a nervous tick but strange in behavior, was eventually the heir to a rather vast family fortune as a result of a well connected family. It was reported that his immediate father had been a builder and that this was the source of the fortune that he inherited upon turning twenty-one. I was never friendly with Pat, indeed most of the kids at the school I went to when I got a little bit older made fun of Pat and his terribly tormented nervous twitch. Life must have been very difficult for him which was why I was so glad to hear about the legacy that he finally inherited.
    As could be expected there were a couple of events that happened at 4 West Palmer Avenue that reinforced the earlier idea that I had picked up in Trenton that life was not always what one would expect, i.e. it was not always nice and the surprises that one got from other people were just a small glimpse of the darkness that was within them. It had been a hot summer day and we had all been playing very hard when Wayne Schuster from next door handed me a can of something and told me that it was lemon aide. As it turned out it was cold piss that they had put into the can or bottle. I had taken a big swig of it and swallowed only to be repulsed by the intense salty quality which any fool knew was not lemon aide. I went home and told either my aunt Pat or my mother who informed Mrs. Shuster of what Wayne had done. Things were never quite the same after that. The other event of this timeframe which only helped to reconfirm the fact that within every human being lurked a heart of darkness was the tension which was building up between my mother and her brother- in- law Ed Pfeffer, my aunt Pat’s husband in regard to our two family living arrangement. Uncle Ed was one of those sort of old school patriarchal types who maybe felt a little threatened by this two sister arrangement and felt that he could no longer maintain control over his testosterone. I overheard an ugly overheated exchange of words between my uncle and my mother where he told her to take her kids and get out of his house. It was shortly thereafter that we moved over to my maternal grandparents’ home at 700 Lees Avenue where we were to spend the next ten years. In a lot of ways those were the happiest ten years of my life. There were problems; however they were minor in comparison to what our little family had had to contend with prior to that.

    700 Lees
    During the time that my mother, my brother, and myself had been living with my Aunt Pat and Uncle Ed; my grandparents had converted the second floor of their modest bungalow home into a one bedroom apartment. It was into this apartment that we moved when I was six years old. My mother would have been twenty-seven and my younger brother would have three and a half years old. He was a cute little blond haired kid with lots of energy and a remarkable musical ability. When he was older my mother gave him accordion lesions because that was the only keyboard instrument that she could afford to buy for him. He had wanted to take piano lessons but that would have necessitated buying a piano and that was out of the question. In a way music was sort of his whole life from about seven years old until his early teens when he thought that people, i.e. kids his age would make fun of him because he played the accordion. When he was three years old and still living with Aunt Pat and Uncle Ed he taught himself how to play the xylophone. He had been given a simple basic toy type instrument for Christmas the year that we were living there and had quite remarkably taught himself how to play all sorts of things on it. It was from that experience that my mother, and everyone else for that matter, got the idea that this kid is quite musical. The real shame however was that he never really got the musical education that he could have used to have made full use of his gift. In my opinion lesser talents have excelled in the world of professional music thanks to the kind of conservatory education that it takes to develop real natural talent. In his late teens he had picked up the guitar and by the time he was in his twenties he was playing classical guitar in the style of Segovia and transcribing classical pieces written for the violin for the guitar. He reworked some of the most beautiful impressionistic pieces written for other instruments by composers such as Debussy and Satie for the guitar, something that as far as I know had never been done by anyone else. This little blond haired kid had a lot of spirit.
    The generosity of my grandparents was a kind of salvation for all three of us, and maybe for them too! It bought three generations together in one house that had seen four generations of the same family living there although not simultaneously together. The little second floor walk up apartment had a living room, a bathroom, a kitchen, and a bedroom as well as a large walk in closet that we all shared. There was another closet in the hallway from the living room to the kitchen that was used for grocery items as well as cleaning supplies. My mother slept on a sofa bed in the living room and my brother and myself shared the one bedroom. It was a cozy little home that served us well until I was about fourteen and then I moved into my own bedroom with my grandparents downstairs. My grandfather put a lot of work into refinishing the hardwood floors and painting the room in the colors that I had picked out. It was beautifully redone with matching curtains and bedspread with a new oval hooked rug. I had my own desk and felt that this was really something special that they had done for me. I continued to have all my meals for the most part upstairs with my mother and brother.
    I have such wonderful memories of so many happy holidays that we spent together there at 700 Lees. Thanksgiving, and Christmas were always very special with a big dinner for the entire extended family. My grandparents were very gracious hosts and it was part of the annual yearly cycle for not only the entire extended family to gather there at 700 Lees with friends as well from far and wide who had now somehow become family in a very real sense. My grandfather’s brothers Uncle Frank and Uncle Larry were often there with their wives Aunt Betty and Aunt Peggy. His sister Mary was usually there with her big shot union president husband Uncle Larry Stoltz. My grandmother’s sister Aunt Ella was there, however, since she was a nun she was known outside our family as Sister Cecilia Veronica ( Saint Cecilia is the patron saint of music ). In those days when a young woman became a nun she took a new name that was indicative of the new life that she had undertaken as a servant of the church. Aunt Ella gave sixty years of her life to the church. I and my mother were the only family members who had the honor to attend her funeral. It was a very institutional type affair because she had lived out her later years in a special home for retired Sisters of the Order of St. Joseph which was a teaching order. Aunt Ella had a teaching degree and had given her whole adult life to serve as a member of this teaching order that staffed various Catholic schools throughout the U.S. mainly on the East coast. The retirement home was referred to merely as the "villa" although it had a more formal type name that I can no longer remember. It was located somewhere way out in the rolling hill country surrounding Philadelphia.  She had a very sweet and saintly quality about her in her final years and was much loved by all her fellow retirees who lived with her there at the "villa". They all called her "Celi" which was no doubt a special term of endearment for them. I remember visiting with her one final time before her death and see this big metal cross caught in the glow of the late afternoon or maybe early evening sunset and thinking to myself that this is your cross Aunt Ella the one you were crucified on!
    The religious life had a special appeal for me back in those days not only because of the fact that my grandmother’s sister was a nun but also because my grandfather had studied for the priesthood after leaving high school. He was very active in the local counsel of the Knights of Columbus and was eventually confirmed in the highest degree given out by that order in a very special ceremony that our whole family attended. Maturity of years and  more information on this subject has convinced me that the Knights of Columbus are more like a cheap Catholic knock-off version of the Masonic Order than anything else.( However, the Masons are a cheap knock-off of the Templars who were a super-secret Roman Catholic Order of warrior priests who were violently and brutally suppressed by the French Monarchy in the middle-ages.) I was never particularly enamored with what seemed to me to be a Hollywoodesque swashbuckling display of swords, and a medieval dress codes that smacked of buffoonery. As a young boy I was given the honor of attending a prayer breakfast with my grandfather where the members of the local counsel gathered. Other Knights of Columbus social events were attended on a more sporadic basis but I was always struck by the more working class nature of this group as compared to the more solemn and socially dignified atmosphere that seemed to surround and typify, at least to my mind, Scottish Rite Freemasonry. Not that I had any real first hand knowledge of the workings of this group; it was more like just the mystique and magic of it all seemed more formidable and substantial to me. Of course such subtle considerations at that point in my young life were only a bare uninformed reflection of the varying degree of social status that seemed to accrue to these two semi-secret quasi-religious organizations. Children are highly impressionable and the impressions that they gather from their environment can be both subtle and wise to a degree that might astound most adults. I have never been disconfirmed in my original impression regarding the degree of social status that has accrued to these two different secret brotherhood type groups; in fact in depth knowledge gained through reading, scholarly interest, as well as more practical worldly experience has convinced me of the validity of my original childhood impression. I suppose that the basis for this subtle comparison of status and maybe worth had much to do with subtle awareness regarding the social status accrued to and given to the Presbyterian wing of my grandmother’s family, namely her father Alexander’s brother Howard Hewston who owned and controlled an insurance and banking firm in Collingwood. He also sat on the board of the largest bank in the area and was in all probability a millionaire or at least so it seemed. My grandmother and grandfather treated Uncle Howard and his wife Aunt Margaret with the utmost deference which to my young mind was a tribute to the unique social status that they both enjoyed. Uncle Howard, as well as the major "movers and shakers" in Collingswood were all members of the local lodge of Scottish Rite Freemasonry. My Aunt Sadie, Uncle Howard’s sister, lived to be 106 years old in a Masonic nursing home in Burlington New Jersey. ( It may have been affiliated with the local Masonic Lodge there that could have dated back to the American Revolution and maybe included as a member my great –great-great-etc. grand-Uncle Capt. James Lawrence who was from Burlington and distinguished himself by his now immortal final command to his crew- "Don’t give up the ship!" Today that is the official motto of the U.S. Navy.) Awareness of such differences and degrees of status to the impressionable minds of the young can maybe lead them in two different direction. One direction would be the direction of self-hate directed at their own family or ethnic heritage, the other might be an enhanced view of the reality of this world that speaks to the differential success enjoyed by the various ethnic and/or racial groups that make up this multivariate world of ours. I like to think that the later course is the one I have consciously chosen for myself, however, I dispute the whole ill conceived concept of race as something that does not correspond to reality. It is a social construct that has historically been used by one group to suppress another.
    The first friend that I made at 700 Lees was a boy one year younger than myself by the name of Stevie Shirk. There was a big huge oak tree across the street from me in front of the home of my mother’s childhood friend Joan Hench where I liked to gather acorns. That was where I first met Stevie Shirk on the kind of beautiful and calm autumn day that one only finds in the Northeast  and was later introduced to the Shirk family with brothers John and Billy. It was through Steve Shirk that I met Glenn Jones his next door neighbor who had a sister named Ellen. Then there was the Garrity family up at the corner a few blocks away. Miriam the mother was my Uncle Ed’s sister and I was always somewhat unclear as to what that translated into by way of a family type relationship to Johnny and Jimmy Garrity as well as their sister Mimi. Johnny and Jimmy Garrity were the neighborhood bullies who regularly beat up the other kids. The smart thing to do was to try to get on their "good" side so as to avoid such regular beatings. After the usual  initiation rite of the pretty much standardized fistfight I distinguished myself enough in the eyes of the Garritys to be admitted to their gang. Both Johnny the oldest boy who was my age and Jimmy who was one year younger have since passed away; Johnny as a result of coronary artery disease and Jimmy as a result of lung cancer. They had an older deaf sister by the name of Patty who also passed away, only two children out of five remain alive today- Richard the baby and Mimi.  I think now that the Garritys’ were very insecure about themselves and that may have had a lot to do with the nature of their fighting Irish outlook on life. They were related to another notorious neighborhood bully by the name of Billy Pfeffer ( I always thought of him as Bully Pfeffer ) who lived around the corner on the next block. He was bigger than all the other kids in the neighborhood and so used his size accordingly!  Bill, Sr. was the brother of my Uncle Ed. I was really never very friendly with Billy Pfeffer and I can honestly say that he is the only person of my youth that I have grown to truly despise. He was the business partner of my cousin Eddy Pfeffer who was killed in the automobile accident previously mentioned. Since my cousins untimely sudden death he has gone onto to parlay himself into a very successful businessman. Rumor has it that he was generous in his payout to Eddy’s widow Lisa for Eddy’s half of the business after Eddy’s untimely death but I suspect otherwise.  Cream is not the only thing that floats to the top, so does scum!
    My most immediate playmates in the area upon first taking up residence at 700 Lees were Jackie and Jimmy Pfister as well as their sister Anne. They live sort of caddy corner to us and also attended St. John’s School until they moved away. Jackie Pfister was the first boy to tell all the other children that me and my brother were bastards because we didn’t have a father. Kids are sometime good at being cruel but their cruelty is based on ignorance. Many so-called adults seem never to have grown up in respect to this. Their ignorance can only be matched by their ugliness both spiritual and otherwise. My mother never missed a beat in explaining to Jackie that my brother and myself were not bastards as he had suggested because we had a father who just did not happen to live with us. Case closed- at least for a while! I think that this incident hurt her more than it ever really hurt me but that was the nature of the hurt to me because I knew the pain that she felt from such things.
    My mother worked very hard to give her two young boys a warm and loving home and in my opinion she succeeded admirably well.  She worked as a secretary at RCA-Radio Corporation of America all the while that we lived on Lees Avenue. I think that the one thing that really held her together in helping her to navigate through the shitstorm of her life during those years was the strong, reliable network of women friends that she had. Some of these friends were young women with whom she worked such as Dolly Lucianno from Mahanoy City, PA whose father was a coal miner. My mother, myself, and my bother drove out to Mahanoy City in the middle of Pennsylvania coal country to stay with her parents for a few days. It was a very interesting experience for us. I still remember going to the old closed down mine where her father used to work and bringing a  black hunk of anthracite coal back home with me as a souvenir. He father spent much of his retirement tending his beloved garden and the penultimate emblem of his gardening pride was his huge beefsteak tomatoes that were really something to see.  Dolly’s first husband was a Canadian conman by the name of George Valley who got himself deported back to Canada. Her second husband was a television repairman by the name of Ed O’Keefe. He was a very strange dude. They had two children who probably thanks to their mother’s influence seemed pretty normal for the most part. I remember Dolly coming over for Thanksgiving one year- I think it was our first year in our new apartment. It was just the four of us but it was nice to have a happy home and it was nice to have Dolly their as our guest. My mother drove an old blue 1950 Dodge that had been given to her by my Aunt Catherine who never learned to drive after my Uncle Walter’s death and so really had no use for it. That was in 1960 when a ten year old car was not any kind of collectable status symbol. The old Dodge, as she referred to it served her well until in 1963 she won a brand new 1963 Chrysler Newport in the yearly church raffle. Actually I won it since the ticket was in my name but as I was only ten years old and my mother had indeed bought the ticket, it seemed the reasonable thing to do to give it to her!  It was the only thing that I or she ever won and I am happy because it served her so well. It was kind of emblematic of a happy time in our lives when the world seemed full of all sorts of possibilities.

    St. John’s School
    My brother and myself attended the same Catholic grammar school that my mother and her three sisters had attended before us. We were three grades apart. I entered first grade in 1956 and my first grade teacher was Sister Paracleta. If I hadn’t had an aunt who herself was a nun, I think that I would have developed a much more cynical view of nunnery that the one I hold today. A lot of this might have to do with the likes of Sister Paracleta. She was a stern young woman and was the cause of a lot of anxiety. In the religious pantheon of the ancient Greeks the eyes of the Medusa could turn any man into stone. To a young boy of six or seven it seemed as if some of these women had been spawned from the same brood. It probably did not help matters that after a couple of weeks of this I pooped my pants out of sheer angst and Sister Paracleta was not amused at having to perform clean up duty!
    In the second grade my mother was told that she had either to seek professional counseling for me or remove me from the school owing to what they felt was my disruptive behavior. My mother got the appropriate professional guidance through a publicly funded local Child Guidance Clinic. After seeing a very nice lady psychologist and a psychiatrist who reminded me a little of my grandfather I was diagnosed with ADHD: Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder. I was also given medication at a later date that would supposedly aid in controlling my unruly behavior. The treatment succeeded admirably well although I became more withdrawn and less active physically. I became more sensitive and inward looking and gradually more focused on schoolwork. I lost interest in sports and became a little nerdy. I graduated from St. John’s School in 1964 and entered Camden Catholic H.S. in 1965. The one year that I spent at Camden Catholic H.S. was an education mainly in the physical abuse that young men were brutally subjected to by the teaching faculty made up of priests and nuns stationed at the various local parishes throughout Camden County, New Jersey and its immediate environs. The freshman boys were routinely beaten by their teachers in a systematic way with one inch think wooden rods. These beatings were part of a regular program of humiliation that was meted out for a variety of reasons. The emotional and psychological damage done to me personally is something that I will carry with me all my life. The bitterness that I feel today in regard to this treatment is something that I still have to live with. While so much attention has been focused on the subject of sexual abuse by the clergy in the Catholic Church little attention has ever been paid to this subject. Not that I was left totally unscathed by the plethora of the sexual abuse of minor children in the Catholic church, but it was the rampant physical abuse that I feel most directly affected me more so than the other. However the sexual abuse that I was exposed to came at a younger age and for that very reason may have had a bigger impact on me than I have ever really suspected or cared to acknowledge. One of the things that I have learned through my study of psychology is that we all strive for healing and wholeness no matter how severe the damage that may have been done to us in our youth. The road to wellness is however a much longer road for some than for others. It is a road fraught with dangers of its own but it is one that we can never turn back from. Indeed it is our only hope of ever attaining our hearts greatest desire- a life free from the burden of guilt and pain that has been inflicted on us for the crime of have been human.
    In the fall of 1966 I began my sophomore year of high school at Collingswood High the same high school that both my mother and father had attended. It seemed like a much better world that I had entered as a result of this decision to attend my own hometown high school. I used to walk to school every day as I had previously done before going to Camden Catholic High School where I was forced to ride in a big ugly uncomfortable yellow school bus. It was back to nature time for me as my early morning walks to school took me by Newton Lake which was just a block down the street from our apartment home on Lees Avenue. I had a great love for the weeping willow trees that I found along the way. Actually they were behind the old Bates mansion on Lakeview Drive. I latter learned compliments of Robert Graves and his weirdly wonderful book The White Goddess that the willow tree was associated and synonomous with witchcraft in the Druid pantheon of beliefs. Maybe that’s why I liked them so much. We used to make whips from their long slender branches when I was much younger. I sort of lost interest in that sort of stuff as I got older. I guess that the whole walk to school was probably about two miles with much of it along the lake. The numerous other landmarks still stand out in my mind even today. The first memorable landmark would be the house on the corner of Lakeview Drive and Lees Lane where the actor Michael Landon lived with his family as a young boy. Back then he was known as Eugene Orwitz and his mother Peggy used to look after me occasionally. She was a nice lady and they had a very nice sedate and comfortable home. I especially remember the nude Venus de Milo type statue that she had in her bedroom. She used to take a little piece of toilet paper and dab my little pecker after I took my little boy whiz to see that I was properly dried off. She was a nice lady but I think that maybe she was also a little lonely because her husband a film distributor for Twentieth-Century Fox Motion Pictures was never home to give her what she needed and was probably off wetting his weenie in some beautiful Hollywood wantabe babe. Peggy used to have what she called a "penny bush" in her side yard facing Lees Lane and we would often go out after my little pecker had been lovingly whipped off and gather pennies from her bush. I guess today she would probably be hauled off to some maximum security prison for sex offenders for having lovingly touched my little weenie! Eugene used to give me piano lessons on their upright piano. I used to sit on his lap while he tried to teach me how to play chopsticks. I was such a slow learner that he eventually gave up on producing a musical genius. If he took after his mother he probably had a big boner pointed straight up my little ass- but I have no real recollection of that!
    My friend Bobby MacGuire lived across the street on the other corner of Lees Lane and Lakeview Drive, however that was well after the Orwitz’s had move away and become more of a local legend than anything else. The MacGuires- Rita and Bob had built a beautiful split level home on the corner. They both worked for the phone company as did all the Pfeffers. I thing that they were both supervisors of some sort. They could not have children of their own so they adopted Bobby. I can’t remember how I first met Bobby MacGuire but we were friends well before high school and before his family built their new home on the corner of Lees Lane & Lakeview Drive. We got friendly because we were both alter boys at St. John’s and we both collected stamps. I used to go over to his old home on Eldridrge Avenue next to the high school when I was just a kid at St. John’s and trade stamps with him. His mother Rita was a very nice lady who always was very welcoming. His dad was a World War II vet who had seen big time action in Germany during the war. Bobby once showed me the German Lugar pistol that he bought back as a souvenir from the war. Bobby was killed in his freshman year at college as a result of a freak accident where he had been partying- probably drinking and maybe smoking dope. He fell down a deep ravine where he and his college buddies had been partying and they found his body some time latter after it had washed out of the ravine. I went to his funeral and it was a sad affair.
    I guess that the next most memorable landmark along the way would have been the old Bates mansion that dated back to the late 17th or early 18th century. It was one of the three or four original homesteads that exited during the early colonial era when what latter became Collingswood was known as Newton Township. I went to high school with Scott Bates who I guess was the only sole survivor of that long line of ancestry going back to the colonial period before the War of Independence. Scott turned out to be a pretty decent guy who I think if my memory serves me correctly was one of those brave and dedicated souls at the Camden County Welfare Board with whom I once upon a time fought the good fight in the never ending war on poverty. His great-great-great-etc. grandparents would have been proud of him. He had a social conscious and thanks to a little LSD turned out to be a really decent human being!
    The rest of the walk was pretty uneventful in terms of notable landmarks, however, on beautiful autumn Saturdays when the Collingswood High School football team was playing at home you could hear the roar of the local crowd from two miles away. For some reason this mass of human voices always made me think about the many other generations like my mother and father’s generation who has attended Collingswood high. I thought about all the war vets who had attended and their mothers and fathers. I thought about all the people who had moved away whose outcome in life was maybe never to be known by their fellow students/friends/neighbors. The possibility of achieving Nervana- that special moment of personal enlightenment where one became a modern incarnation of the Buddha occurred to me later in life walking along that same well trodden path. Maybe some day for me it would indeed become a path of enlightenment for me too, my own special Buddha moment when I would see the value of life that persisted and endured in the face of personal pain and suffering. Maybe somehow that moment would be eternal as actually every moment really is eternal only we never realize and appreciate that fact in our normal everyday state of consciousness. That was the Buddha moment when you could not only see and appreciate that fact but feel it with your entire being.
    Collingswood High
    My three years at Collingswood Senior High School as it was called back then and maybe still is today were by most people’s standards pretty uneventful but for me they were about the possible realization of brave new worlds out there and great personal revelations about human nature such as can only be realized by a particular kind of thoroughly introverted personality. I was never one for sharing my thoughts and feelings with other people about the deeper meaning of life and all of that. (It was only at age 56 while in a graduate mental health counseling program at Stetson University in DeLand, Florida that I learned as a result of taking the MBTI-Myers Briggs Type Indicator that I was an INFP- Introverted Intuitive Feeling Perceiving type). My thoughts were my own but my feelings were always something sacred or so it seemed to me at the time(and even now there is that aspect to things of the feeling world-even more so and why maybe that feelings at this point in my life need to be shared ,i.e. for my own salvation). Much of the energy of my life at this time went into trying to disguise my real feelings about a whole host of things that would be too innumerable to go into at length. Suffice it to say that an INFP personality type is one whose dominant personality function is feeling which translates into values as a way of understanding and navigating in his or her world. I knew what values were important to me but I could never share them with other people. The reasons for this are even to this day very hard to explain. I guess it might be safe to say that at the top of the pyramid of the hierarchy of my personal values at that time stood life and love which seemed to be one and the same and came with a highly charged erotic component which is normal and natural because it reflects the true nature of what both life and love are. They are the two sides of the very same thing and this is one thing that the haters and the bigots of every shape, size, colour, and social distinction imaginable will never be able to get their evil little minds around. They will never understand that the very nature of life itself is love. "LIFE BE THOU ONE,
    By the same token I guess it would be safe to say that at the bottom of my personal hierarchy of needs or more correctly what could be thought of as the first rung of those needs was the one basic need that was a required pre-requisite for possibly attaining all the other higher needs-and that was my need for personal safety. And it was this pre-requisite need for personal safety that told me that it was not safe for me to divulge to others my real feelings because they would never understand. They were, for the most part, miered in a world of bigotry and prejudice upheld by brutality and violence of the worst sort. That brutality and violence could be directed at any one at any time for the "crime" of merely being different in some fundamental way that their basic inhumanity could not understand. Part and parcel to this feeling thing and the idea that I got into my silly little head at that early uninformed stage of my life was the often intense sense of sexual attraction, interest, curiosity that I had about a young neighborhood friend who was one year older than me but with whom I came into almost daily intimate contact with on a regular basis as a result of our both being on both the wrestling and track team together. This was the kind of intense attraction that never really manifested itself into any kind of real overt behavior just fantasies about jerking off with my buddy and that sort of thing that was pretty damned silly and no reason to go around for the rest of my life thinking that I was a fagot. I realize now that this sort of same sex attraction is common in both boys and girls and if I had only had someone (who was well informed on this subject) that I could have talked to about this I might have gotten the idea into my head that indeed I was normal and not the kind of sick deviant type personality that I felt myself to be as a result of having these feelings. SEX- that great taboo subject that no one really ever really talks about in terms of how they really feel at any one given moment- because we are always changing and experiencing new and different people and a whole range of emotions is played on us as a musician would play upon a musical instrument. In this case we are the instrument and life itself is the musician. " Life is a Teacher who shows us many things, and when we have learned all the lessons we no longer need the Teacher."  ( A saying I learned many years later while living in Philadelphia from a beat, down & out African American character by the name of Ron Jones who walked around with a loaded revolver stuck behind him in his belt and lived without electricity in a row house his mother had left to him. Ron had a kind of soulful wisdom that makes him memorable even today! I think he knew those MOVE back to nature characters who got themselves bombed by the Philly PD-children and all).
    So I guess that the point of all this self-revelation and self-reviling was that maybe I was just a basically normal type kid who had a certain kind of personality that predisposed him to not being really too trusting toward the outside world and that that was basically how I functioned then and even now to a large degree. The problem with this kind of a personality mix is that when you start bringing in other kinds of stuff and people like psychiatrists and clinical psychologists things can get real messy in the kids mind at least in terms of who he is and what his real problem is really all about. Perhaps it’s not about him in the first place at all! Perhaps it’s about a totally fucked up society( from top to bottom) that is totally out of touch with all real human needs and thinks that it is so very cool and in touch because of all the artificial needs that it is forever stimulating and selling in the interest of private property, monopoly capitalism, and that greatest of all magical mysteries that we are all forced to worship through the subtle art of social learning theory- the MARKETPLACE- that great and all powerful god/goddess of the West! And you always thought that idolatry was something practiced in darkest Africa or some far off South sea island by like minded dark-skinned heathens and that it was indeed not the spiritual bedrock of modern day Western civilization itself or rather to put it more accurately and succinctly the total and complete lack of any kind of a spiritual bedrock or any kind of a real moral compass! So I guess it might be safe to say that what was often sold to me as some kind of psychological crisis was really a kind of spiritual crisis and indeed it was the self-same spiritual vacuum that stood at the very heart of – or rather the lack of a heart in Western civilization itself! That’s a pretty ruff deal for a kid of just sixteen!
    I spent my three years at Collingwood High as a super devout Catholic who was maybe just a little bit less so as a result of no longer getting his regular share of beatings from the teaching clergy at Camden Catholic but nevertheless pretty damned devout all the same. I even had some bizarre mystical experiences back in those days which probably had more to do with open cans of turpentine and/or paint-thinner in the basement than anything else otherworldly- but that is not for me to say at this time and place in my life since I have become again a true believer in the wonderful power of the strange and the beautiful to transform us and our lives. Life was good during this period of my life and I have many happy moments to look back on in spite of the fact that I have lost personal contact with all those boyhood and teenage  friends who meant so much to me when growing up and being a part of my community. In my senior year I got a job working in a local area supermarket and as a result felt that I had really arrived in life. However, that was after my mother bought our first real home on Wesley Avenue in Collingwood which was way over on the other side of town from where we had been living and the one address that seemed to have so much meaning for me. Wesley Avenue was a dead end street of well built and now expensive brick row homes that were often referred to as the "Lippencott" homes because the builder who built them was none other than Pat Lippencott’s old man who died and left him a fortune well in the millions.
    For me the change of address was emblematic of a lot of other important changes in my life that were occurring at that time. My sexual interest/curiosity in my once bosom buddy Joey Miers had turned into an even more discrete and passionate interest in members of the opposite sex one of which was a beautiful red-headed young gal with whom I world at Acme Markets in Westmont and who was one year ahead of me at Collingswood High. She was very voluptuous with a very nice personality and I feel more comfortable talking about her that about the kind of fantasies I entertained my self with in regard to Joey Miers who was a very handsome blond haired boy who lived on Merrick Avenue which was a few blocks away from 700 Lees. His mother grew up on a farm somewhere in the Mid-West and he had relatives in Germany that his sister Eileen used to go and stay with during the summer but for some reason Joey was never interested in going over there to stay with them and see Germany. He had a beautiful physique that I had the opportunity to see on a regular basis as a result of showering together. However, that didn’t mean that I walked around with a nice big boner every time I saw him nude in the shower. We even wrestled together as partners at practice and there was no real big super turn on. I think that looking back on all this now from the standpoint of firm

    •  My Story, continued.... (0+ / 0-)

      . I think that looking back on all this now from the standpoint of firm clinical knowledge in regard to such things as well as some pretty accurate memories of my own thoughts and behaviors- it was more like a very profound curiosity about sex and the way that it might have been playing out in my friend’s life and just what it would have meant to me to be able to have really talked about all this with him just to see if he was going through the same sort of thing and experiencing the same sorts of thoughts, feelings, emotional attachments, etc. I’m a mystery even to myself but less so as time goes on and the mystery seems to be solving itself! Of course there is a mystery to sex which in a lot of ways is the same as the mystery of love/life. Maybe it can never really be understood rationally in the life of each and every person who has the supreme honor to experience it to the full. We always have perfect rationality in regard to the lives of other people because rationality is often about the free exercise of our own ignorance and prejudice.
      I had a few emotional setbacks in high school a few of which involved violence directed at me by other students. My inability at this stage of my life to be the kind of tough guy that maybe I inwardly wanted to be if only to be able to get the ordinary kind of respect that I felt that I deserved was, I think, something that gave me an inward sense of shame and later grew into a sense of worthlessness. I was physicaly assaulted and humiliated by two teenage thugs both maybe in the same year. I try not to dwell to much on the unpleasant memories no matter how indelible they may be. I guess the overall impression which still stands and was alluded to in my first real encounter with irrational violence that I made mention to earlier of young Ray Walter pushing me off my grandmother’s front porch- is that evil is real and is a part of our everyday lives only we don’t always experience it as such especially when it is happening to other people. One million human beings have lost their lives in Iraq as a result of America’s illegal war of aggression in violation of international law and no one sees it as evil until in some way it impacts them personally. Many people secretly admired Hitler and the Nazi regime because the reality of that evil never touched them personally, ditto Stalinism. We are always aquainted with evil only on a subjective basis, that is, when it touches us personally. It takes a very, very special kind of person to understand the nature of evil in a rational objective way. So far in my reading I have only encountered one of the so-called greats who had this ability and that was Carl G. Jung who in spite of himself had great big blind spots. That doesn’t say much for the rest of us I suppose!
      So I had to withstand the injustice of two pretty good ass kickings in high school and a few other humiliations of a similar sort that sort of came with the territory that I occupied emotionally and spiritually which is to say intellectually because intellectualism is spiritualism and is why the true intellectual is so hated in this society that has no heart and soul, i.e. no spirit. I first developed the habit of reading in high school. That, however, probably began at Camden Catholic where we were given two novels to read during the summer- The Yearling by Majorie Kinnan Rawlings and The Spy by James Fenimore Cooper. I like to think that both of these early reads have had a strange and wonderful formative effect upon my personality as well as  many of the other novels that I dedicated myself to during my high school years in an effort to broaden my formal education and thereby improve my character. I never really realized at that time how reading would grow into research and become one of overwhelming passions of my life. I still remember my first impressions of A Tale of Two Cities by Charles Dickens as well as David Copperfield.  Gradually I branched out into more daring literary ventures such as Brave New World by Aldous Huxley, and other such dystopian parables that left me stunned by the possibilities of evil to warp human history.
      My senior year involved more than just getting to get it on a little bit with Mary Lou Baker who I never worked up the courage to really get it on with in spite of all the rumors that she was making herself quite available to those with an interest in getting it on. I never even had the courage to ask a girl to attend the senior prom with me although I had numerous opportunities to do so. There was a very nice and beautiful young girl who lived down the street from me by the name of Donna Merritt. I used to walk to school with her sometimes and she was very self-conscious at that stage of her life but grew up to be a real looker, i.e. a beautiful young woman who married a Navy Ensign. She was half Native American. She was a very sweet gal and I’m glad that she married well. My first real girlfriend was young woman by the name of Paula Romano who I met in my first year of college at Rutgers University in Camden. I was eighteen at the time and very much in need of some real experience with the opposite sex. My romance with Paula lasted only for a short while as I left Rutgers after my Freshman year to become a kind of beatnik hippie beach bum who smoked dope and read poetry. I worked for a few months after leaving college full time for Acme Markets on their night crew at the store in Westmont. It was a very strange and surreal experience for me a kind of a very rude awakening to the real hard core realities of the working world that most people without any kind of higher education would experience for the better part of their sorry lives. I was still living at home with my mother and brother on Wesley Avenue and my pretty much total inability to get any real sleep during the day became my undoing as I became less and less able to function adequately on a job where great physical demands were placed on the workers to perform at a certain standard. I think that a couple of time I actually went into work totally spaced out on LSD to the point that it must have been obvious to the night crew manager that I was pretty fucked up. However, maybe it was just pot that I had been smoking as the summer of 1969 was my "summer of love" so to speak when I was first introduced to marijuana by a high school classmate by the name of Dick Ormsby. I still remember that initial experience of smoking pot in Knight’s Park in Collingwood. Dick was a musician who played in the school band and was much like my brother in that he had a kind of innate musical ability where with a little effort he could teach himself to play any instrument that he wanted to learn to play. For some strange reason however he chose to play the drums in the school band and I guess that was because he just thought that drums were just so damned cool and all that- that he had to be a drummer! And he would walk around all day and every once in a while go into one of these drumming outburst where he would just start pounding out a rythym on what ever was at hand with his hands or with anything else for that matter that he could sort of make a drumstick out of. Dick and his gang were right on the leading edge of everything edgy and avante garde and revolutionary. He was sort of an archetypal dope smoking narsisistic hippie who was really a very interesting and intelligent young man who had a social conscience in spite of himself. He hung around with a totally bizarre character by the name of Walter Trout who lived in a high rise apartment complex in West Collingswood called Parkview Apartments pretty much by himself and who attended some very bizarre avante garde arts fartsy high school in Center City Philadelphia. Walt was the first person who in 1968 predicted that some young guy by the name of Bill Gates would become the richest man in the world.
      So in a way Collingswood high school bought me full circle from a kind of closed and parochial world view to one that reached out to the larger world and connected with it in some sort of basic spiritual, emotional, psychological, and intellectual way that worked for me and made sense. Our class trip in 1968 was to New York City and I can still remember some of the details of that memorable day that are worth remembering but most of all what I remember was that this was a kind of real and genuine introduction to a much wider world that we in our quite and comfortable suburban life had only read about or maybe even thought about and now here it was for real right in front of us and all around us- all the sights and sounds and smells that were the basic stuff of reality. Education can take place in many ways and can affect a person on many levels of their being.

      •  Research Interests- (0+ / 0-)

        Running head: Psychoanalytic Theory and the Occult

        Psychoanalytic Theory and the Occult: Jung & Ferenczi
        Charles S. Knause
        Stetson University


        The purpose of this paper is to discuss the work of Sandor Ferenczi (1873 – 1933) and Carl Jung (1875 – 1961) in regard to their theories of the occult/PSI phenomena and how these unique experiences can greatly facilitate the individuation process for those experients if a proper therapeutic approach is used by the therapist. Sandor Ferenczi was a Hungarian psychoanalyst who worked closely with Sigmund Freud and developed his own unique theoretical approach to dealing with occult phenomena. With out a doubt, the greatest strides forward in this field were made by the Swiss psychoanalyst Carl G. Jung with his theory of Synchronicity that was developed in close association with the physicist Wolfgang Pauli.

        Psychoanalytic Theory and the Occult: Jung and Ferenczi
        Probably the strangest and most controversial psychoanalytic theorist who worked closely with Freud and developed his own unique approach to many very controversial questions was the Hungarian analyst Sandor Ferenczi (1873-1933). Ferenczi was a close associate of Freud who eventually became something of an embarrassment for the psychoanalytic movement owing mainly to his theories regarding early childhood sexual abuse and the occult. It was his theory that a "confusion of tongues" resulted from the crossed/exploded personal boundaries that resulted as a result of early childhood incest and that the physical boundary crossing had a psychic or spiritual dimension as well (Thurschwell, 1999). This "confusion of tongues" resulted in the incest victim becoming a kind of vehicle for the thought projections of the violator (Thurschwell, 1999). Ferenczi is well known for his work with a patient by the name of Elizabeth Severn with whom he worked very closely for a number of years (Kalsched, 2003). Ms. Severn was a person who had both clairvoyant and telepathic ability owing to what Ferenczi referred to a schizoidal dissociative type split in her personality that was a direct result of the many years of sexual abuse from a father who reportedly hypnotized her in order to gain her compliance as a child. Ferenczi developed what he referred to as a kind of mutual co-analysis in his work with Ms. Severn (Kalsched, 2003) which was so intense and personally difficult for him that it has been reported that it took years off his life. Be that as it may, Ferenczi  was a thoroughly original and provocative theorist who while deeply hated by some people in the movement such as Freud’s official biographer Ernest Jones produced a very original body of work in regard to the treatment of childhood incest victims that also contributed to a new understanding of the kinds of dissociative mental states that these people seemed affected by.
        According to Ferenc Eros, 2003: "The Ferenczi Cult: Its Historical Roots", Sandor Ferenczi’s most important contribution to the psychoanalytic field was his contribution/establishment of object relations theory. According to the author of this paper-
        Ferenczi was (a) pioneer of one of the most influential directions in modern psychoanalysis,
        the object relations theory. As is well known, he had an immediate role in the origin of this theory,
        most significantly through his disciples who later appeared on the British psychoanalytic scene:
        Melanie Klein and Michael Balint. In these intellectual and personal routes of transmission the
        modern theories of attachment and infant development may celebrate in Ferenczi their founding
        ` father, who always emphasized the significance of early mother – infant interaction and of the
        pre-oedipal period in general.
        Reiner 2004, "Psychic phenomena and early emotional states" slows clearly the dangers of fascination with the archetypal, i.e. transcendent function responsible for psi phenomena can be a dire threat to the health and well being of the client/patient. P.316-"In a discussion of idealization Cocks presents similar warning of the ‘perils of fascination’ with the mysterious and transcendent, and the necessity for ‘maintaining a rational and ethical distance from destructive enthusiasms’ (Cocks 2002, pp. 19-20). There is danger, Speicher also says, of ‘fascination with archetypal energies’ and of falling into the shadow (Speicher 2002, pp.151-2). As we will see in the clinical material, this fascination may serve as a defense against disturbing unconscious emotions, and the exercise of extra sensory perceptions of clairvoyance, telepathy, clairaudience, etc., may in this way compromise reality testing and interfere with emotional development if not integrated within the broader context of other mental functions."
        Most people are completely unaware of Sigmund Freud’s own personal interest in the occult. According to Gay, p.443 " In a letter of 1921, Freud declared that he was not ‘among those who right off reject the study of the so-called occult psychological phenomena as unscientific, as unworthy, or even dangerous.’ Rather, he declared himself as a "complete layman and newcomer’ in the field, but one who could not get rid of certain skeptical materialistic prejudices.’ In the same year he drafted a memorandum, ‘Psychoanalysis and Telepathy’, for confidential discussion among the members of the committee-Abraham, Eitingon, Ferenczi, Jones, Rank, and Sachs- in which he adapted the same stance. He noted a little mischievously that psychoanalysis had no reason to follow established opinion in the contemptuous condemnation of the occult occurrences. ‘It would not be the first time that it lends support to the obscure but indestructible surmises of the common people against the knowing arrogance of the educated.’  Further down on p.444 Gay states: " Yet some occult experiences, particularly in the domain of thought transference, might prove authentic. In 1921, Freud declared himself willing to leave the matter open- but, at the same time, preferred to keep the matter confined to his innermost circle, lest a frank discussion of telepathy divert attention from psychoanalysis."
        The reason for the parting of the ways between Jung and Freud had to do with this very question of the occult and Freud’s inability to see beyond his personal commitment to the sexual theory. According to Jung (Memories, Dreams, Reflections), Freud was more concerned about creating a public climate of respectability for the new psychoanalytic movement by distancing it from perceived speculations about the occult and all the negative publicity that that would entail than in anything else. Freud felt that if the public at large became aware of his and his inner circle’s interest in the occult that this would undermine its credibility as an emerging new science of the mind and seriously set back the cause to which he had dedicated the greater part of his professional life. One of the most famous encounters between Freud and Jung on this subject is recounted by Jung in his autobiographical work Memories,Dreams,Reflections  on p.150-
        I can still recall vividly how Freud said to me, "My dear Jung, promise me never to
        abandon the sexual theory. That is the most essential thing of all. You see, we must make a dogma
        of it, an unshakable bulwark." He said that to me with great emotion, in the tone of a father saying,
        " And promise me this one thing, my dear son: that you will go to church every Sunday." In some
        astonishment I asked him, " A bulwark- against what?" To which he replied, " Against the black
        tide of mud"- and here he hesitated for a moment, then added- "of occultism." First of all, it was
        words "bulwark" and  "dogma" that alarmed me; for a dogma, that is to say, an undisputable
        confession of faith, is set up only when the aim is to suppress doubts once and for all. But that no
        longer has anything to do with scientific judgment; only with a personal power drive.
        Jung’s scientific/professional interest in the occult may have been stimulated by some early childhood experiences. He recounts in his autobiographical work cited above how he had two maternal aunts who were given to holding séances; however this would not have been overly unusual as the period when Jung was growing up was during the  late 19th century was the heyday of Spiritualism, a movement that had quite a worldwide following in the Western nations of his day. Jung also makes reference in the same as well as in various other major works how he was personally affected by very powerful and thought provoking vivid dreams that came to him in his childhood. The one thing that separates Jung however, from all other speculators in regard to theories of the occult and the effect of such subjective experiences on individuals was his personal determination to put all such inquiries on a firm empirical, scientific, and rational basis. That determination led Jung into a close association with the physicist Wolfgang Pauli with whom he maintained a lifelong personal and professional relationship (Donati, 2004). It was through this important professional relationship that Jung was able to formulate his monumental and revolutionary theory of the occult Synchronicity: An Acausal Connecting Principle.
        Synchronicity, as a theory, grew out of Jung’s interest in the archetypes as fundamental aspects of the natural world that existed in what he called a "psychoid" state that was in essence a formative field for both the psychic as well as the material world existing in a state that was neither physical or psychic but out of which both aspects of reality grew and/or formulated themselves. Synchronicity has been popularly described as a kind of "meaningful coincidence" however such an abbreviated explanation does a disservice to this complex unifying field theory. The theory that the psychic and material realm pre-exist together in a "psychoid" realm is the key to understanding this theory. The archetypes, which are basically organizing principles, are in operation at this psychoid level and continue to exert their formative influence even beyond the "psychoid" realm into ordinary reality on two separate planes simultaneously- the psychic and the physical. One could correctly say that they emerge from the "psychoid" level of organization and exert their image simultaneously on both the physical as well as psychic level. This image primarily and usually takes places at the unconscious level through symbol formation. It has been the universal rule amongst theorist of the occult, either Jungian or otherwise that all such paranormal occurrences are bought about as a result of action on the unconscious mind. Telepathy and clairvoyance, for instance, are according to the general theory that seems to prevail in regard to such things the action of one unconscious mind upon another, acting at a subliminal level out of range of ordinary consciousness. According to Jungian theorists there are various levels of the unconscious; one level is the personal unconscious but at a much deeper level is the collective unconscious which is an aspect of mind that is unbounded by space and time, meaning that it has always existed and is not limited by space as we perceive it.
        Jungian theorist state that one can become aware of the archetypes that one lives by, so to speak, that are directly and sometimes unhealthily in control of one’s life- through analysis. One specific method usually employed by the Jungian analyst is the method of amplification. This involves working intensely with dream material in an effort to amplify it or rather amplify its true meaning through the use of mythology, religious texts, alchemy, and often whatever other sources may exist to shed light on the nature and meaning of the symbolism that the unconscious mind uses as a kind of language to speak to us in our dreams. The unconscious mind is according to most Jungian theorist the mind of nature that has exited since time began and is significant because it strives to balance out, so to speak, our conscious mind’s attitude which is often quite at odds with our whole needs as a fully integrated individuated person. Religious symbols are important to the Jungian therapist because religion itself is the projection of the collective unconscious of humanity down through the ages. The various religious symbols that exist are the spontaneous products of the collective unconscious, i.e. the mind of nature(God/Goddess) in man, that have been successfully integrated into consciousness as a result of a numinous experience that is kith and kin to the nature of synchronicity.
        Synchronicity was important to Jung not only because of the experience itself, but because it seemed to breath new renewed life into people giving them a gift, an insight into an unknown dimension that transcended ordinary space/time/ dimensions as we know them. These experiences, he noted, always seemed to come at a crisis point when it seemed that the analysis had reached a kind of stuck point- but where emotion was at a high point. They provided a kind of solution for the patient that could not have been provided otherwise.  The important point to remember about synchronicity is that it is not a mere series of coincidences as Jung pointed out in a comical sort of way in Synchronicity:An Acausal Connecting Principle, p.15 footnote 26-
        Pp. 194ff. A certain M. Deschamps, when a boy in Orleans, was once given a piece of
        plum-pudding by a M. de Fortgibu. Ten years later he discovered another plum-pudding
        in a Paris restaurant, and asked if he could have a piece. It turned out, however, that
        the plum-pudding was already ordered- by M. de Fortgibu. Many years afterward M. Deschamps
        was invited to partake of a plum-pudding as a special rarity. While he was eating it he remarked
        that the only thing lacking was M. de Fortgibu. At that moment the door opened and an old, old
        man in the last stages of disorientation walked in: M. de Fortgibu, who had got hold of the wrong
        address and burst in on the party by mistake.
        This incident was related to prove the point that there was no inherent meaning that held these three events together. In other words, it was just a coincidence however curious at that- but still just a coincidence. The difference between coincidence and a synchronicity is that a synchronicity is held together by a special and unique meaning for the person who experiences it. It is the meaning that matters most. To quote an old Chinese saying used by Jung- "When the student is ready, the teacher will appear."
        It is the unique ability of human beings to heal themselves through these kinds of guided therapeutic imagery experiences that Jung and his associates have always stressed. However it is important to note that these kinds of experiences always come at a high point of emotion or as Jungians would say when the archetype is fully constellated. The term "spirit" also figures prominently in these discussions in regard to the archetypes and the synchronistic event. Dr. Marie-Louise Von Franz , successor to Jung and the leading theorist of her day describes the value of such parapsychological experiences for the client/patient in On Divination and Synchronicity: The Psychology of Meaningful Chance, p.20-
        One of the main ways in which we use the word spirit is in speaking of the inspired,
        Vivifying aspect of the unconscious. Now we know that for the ego complex to get in touch
        with the unconscious has a vivifying and inspiring effect, and that is really the basis of all our
        therapeutic efforts. Sometimes neurotic people, who have become closed up in their neurotic
        vicious circle, as soon as they go into analysis and have dreams, get excited and interested in
        the dreams and then the water of life flows again.; they once more have an interest and therefore
        are suddenly more alive and more efficient. Then somebody may say: "What has happened to
        you? You have come alive again"- but that only happens if the individual succeeds in making
        contact with the unconscious, or one could say "with the dynamism of the unconscious," and
        especially with its vivifying, inspiring aspect.
        In terms of what are defined and thought of as the parapsychological aspects of these experiences, i.e. direct contact with the unconscious Dr. Von Franz goes on to say in the same work on p.21, and 22-
        So the larger our consciousness is, and the more it develops, the more we get hold of
        certain aspects of the spirit of the unconscious, draw it into our subjective sphere, and then call
        it our own psychic activity or our own spirit. But, as Jung points out, a great part of the original
        phenomenon remains naturally autonomous and therefore still experienced as parapsychological
        phenomenon. In other words, we must not assume that at our present stage of consciousness,
        where we have assimilated more than a certain amount of the spirit of the unconscious and made
        it our own – i.e., made it the possession of the ego complex so that the ego complex can
        manipulate it – that we have the whole thing. There is still an enormous area of that spirit which
        manifests as it did originally, completely autonomously, and therefore as a parapsychological
        phenomenon, as it does among primitive people.
        Jung’s common interest in both synchronicity and orientalism led him into contact with orientalist Richard Wilhelm. It was through Wilhelm that Jung became familiar with the ancient Chinese classic I Ching, (pronounced EE Ching). Jung spent many years studying the I Ching and claimed that this ancient oracular system was capable of producing a synchronicity and it was this unique ability that gave this work an animated nature where one could in essence speak directly to it in a properly respectful manner and get back an answer that would in effect be an answer to one’s question at that particular moment (Karcher, 1998). According to Jung, the I Ching represented a method of mobilizing the forces of the unconscious and hence the archetypes so that one could in essence create a real honest to goodness synchronicity that could be of real value to a person if they approached this whole endeavor in the proper spirit. Jung had in effect found an experimental way of producing a synchronicity that was both interesting and thoroughly useful. In the Foreword to Richard Wilhelm’s translation of the I Ching  Jung says: " This assumption involves a certain curious principle that I have termed synchronicity, a concept that formulates a point of view diametrically opposed to that of causality. Since the latter is a merely statistical truth and not absolute, it is a sort of working hypothesis of how events evolve one out of another, whereas synchronicity takes the coincidence of events in space and time as meaning something more than mere chance, namely, a particular interdependence of objective events among themselves as well as with the subjective (psychic) states of the observer or observers."  Further on in the Forward Jung continues- "In the I Ching, the only criterion of the validity of synchronicity is the observer’s opinion that the text of the hexagram amounts to a true rendering of his psychic condition." According to authors Kerson and Rosemary Huang in the preface to their version of the I Ching, "The Western reader knows the I Ching chiefly through Richard Wilhelm’s 1923 German translation, which was rendered into English by Cary F. Baynes. Carl Jung used this version as a psychoanalytic tool, thereby conferring on it legitimacy, and helped make it the prophet of the sixties." It was news to me personally that Jung had indeed used the I Ching in this way but it would fit with what was for him the main emphasis of his psychoanalytic model which was to make the unconscious conscious so that the client/patient could gain new insights into his/her mode of behavior. It is important to realize that to my knowledge Jung never referred to the I Ching as an oracle per se but only as a means of projecting the unconscious, and by "projecting" the unconscious he meant uncovering, i.e. revealing its hidden workings so that the analysis could take place. From a psychoanalytic perspective it is indeed important for the client to see and have some appreciation for the underlying unconscious forces that may be in more direct control over his/her life than is either healthy or advisable. If Jung did indeed use the I Ching in this matter it would be analogous to the more conventional psychotherapeutic approach of using the Rorschach Test. This projective test developed by the Swiss psychiatrist Herman Rorschach (1884 -1922) was essentially based upon the same psychoanalytic principle of unconscious projection by the client/patient upon a random pattern that the therapist could then interpret. It was the personal genius of Jung that he was able to see that the ultimate truth behind all things lay in the unity of opposites and that through him East finally met West in a way that was truly unique and fulfilling for both cultural traditions.
        In addition to the three analytic techniques mentioned above that most Jungian analysts use: 1) amplification 2) guided imagery 3) projective tests, i.e. Rorschach, I Ching; an other analytic technique that Jung is famous for developing is the association word test. As originally devised by Jung this was a random list of 100 words listed in no particular order but with certain key words interspersed regularly throughout the list. The client/patient world be asked to freely associate the first word that came to mind in response to a word on the list and the response time for each individual word response would be timed with a stopwatch. A long response time generally indicated the activation of a complex that blocked the initial first freely associated response. Through careful use of the word association test the therapist could gain some idea of the complexes affecting the patient’s response. A fifth primary technique that could be employed by a Jungian analyst would be the Myers Briggs Type Indicator.
        According to Tresan 1996, "Jungian metapsychology and neurobiological theory": "I have been impressed with the irony that although Freud intended to ground his theory in the physical sciences, it is Jung’s psychology that seems to conform more aptly with the findings of contemporary brain research." The article goes on to explain how a major paradigm shift is occurring today in all sciences and especially psychology. The old strictly reductionist model that essentially determined causality by looking at smaller and smaller parts of the phenomenon or thing under study is giving way to a more holistic systems driven approach. The first inklings of this paradigm shift came through the publication of Einstein Special Relativity Theory and the discovery by Werner Heisenberg of his Uncertainty Principle. In terms of present day neuroscience and consciousness theories: Sperry 1993, "A powerful paradigm made stronger" says;
        What is involved is the age old reductionist-holist issue.
        A new way of reasoning, a new logic, or different reference frame for causation
        was needed. In other words what reversed the scientific ban on  consciousness was not new
        evidence, but a new logic...
        The key concept here, that of downward causation, though simple, has seemed to give
        More trouble than any other. According to traditional atomistic or microdeterminist science,
        everything is determined from below upward following the course of evolution. Brain states
        determine mental states, but not vice versa. In the new view, however, things are doubly
        determined, not only from lower levels upward, but from above downward.
        ........scientific materialism, with its exclusive atomistic, reductive physicalist approach,
        Has been in error all along, excluding, not only the mental but also, in principle, all autonomous
        macro, emergent, or holistic explanations.
        The recognition of the major causal role thus played by the higher, more evolved forces
        of both human and nonhuman nature gives science a vastly changed view of the entire natural
        order. The mental, subjective, vital, and social forces are given their due, as well as physics and
        chemistry. No longer is science incompatible with the humanities, values, or ethics. Perhaps of
        most importance, for present purposes, the great divide between science and religion is removed-
        at least for liberal, nondualistic theology.
        There are three excellent ways for the working Jungian therapist/counselor to maintain and increase his/her knowledge and/or skills. The C.G. Jung Foundation, 28 East 39th Street, New York, NY 10016: Tel. (212) 697-6430: has ongoing workshops, summer study programs, advanced seminars, continuing education, and lectures. Inner City Books is the largest publishing house for Jungian analysts and scholars. Their complete catalogue is available through their website at According to its website at "The Journal of Analytical Psychology is the foremost international Jungian publication in English, now in its 51st Volume. Commissioned by the Society of Analytical Psychology in London, the editorial board includes leading analysts from the UK and the USA, in collaboration with Jungian analysts from around the world."

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              Forum of Psychoanalysis, 13, 121-128.
        Gay, Peter (1998). Freud: A Life for Our Time. New York: W.W. Norton & Company.
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