Part Thirteen of The Unseen Sea
The history of life’s reactions to its environment – the ‘out there’ – is written in what we now call the psychology of the human. The word psychology derives from the Greek ‘psyche’: literally, ‘The Self’, though ‘self’ has come to mean many things since then.
In previous posts, we have discussed how LUCA’s separation and proto-consciousness arose together. Separation from the primal ocean generated the need for persistence, which became the drive for survival, as more and more organised variants of LUCA were evolved. This occurred because there was both preservation of successful variations and, eventually, the ability to remember, to image and to transmit the results to fellow LUCA life forms, thereby giving humans the ability to evolve, in a subjective sense, within a lifetime.
The journey through life this entails is written into the human psyche. Each of us relives the story of life on Earth as we pass from foetus to breathing and suckling human. In terms of our internal (subjective) existence, we move from a secure ocean in the womb of Mother, to a land-based world where we have to struggle for our own survival. Our early experiences, unless there is trauma for the pregnant mother, are spent in a state of great peace and togetherness.
Birth is traumatic, and the beginning of our own separation. A stable and happy infancy, in which most of our needs are met, will result in a child that knows peaceful love, and has a strong, initial trust of the world. Children who have a more difficult time are left subjectively (and possibly physically) scarred, and these ‘neglects’ will cast their shadow over the whole lifetime unless they are gently revisited and expunged by skilled minds and hands. We will return, later, to a consideration of how these ‘neglects’ are inevitable and can be seen as part of the life-plan, from a spiritual perspective.
Somewhere between the ages of five and seven, the child will normally mature into an entity which is conscious of ‘it-self’. Although it has been biologically true since birth, the child did not think itself separate until this point. This, therefore, marks a fundamental gateway into its world. The words ‘its world’ are deliberate, here, and highlight the subjective power that is crystallised at this point, in terms of both how the child’s world is perceived, and, eventually, how long-held beliefs colour and shape every second of its experience.
All of this is encapsulated in the structures and methods of the modern enneagram. By modern enneagram, I mean the ‘Schools of the Self’ that developed after the pioneering work of Oscar Ichazo in the 1960s, building on the earlier work of G.I.Gurdjieff, who brought the enigmatic nine-pointed figure to the west. This work became known as the “Fourth Way”, and flourished in the middle years of the last century. Use of the enneagram was kept secret and restricted to students of Gurdjieff. Knowledge of it was not made public until the 1940s. From the 1960s, interest in the enneagram exploded, and organisations as diverse as management consultants to the Jesuits became fascinated by its ability to help manage personal transformation.
In Part Twelve of this series, we said that our figure of Maria, the daughter of Grandad Lucca, had a correspondence with the figure 1 (One) on the clockface of the enneagram (above). This association is known as being a ‘type’ and derives from the core conditions observed by psychology in its work to describe human behaviour and its causes. There are therefore nine such types on the circumference of the enneagram, each corresponding to a subjective route of reaction and perception that the infant takes on its long road to adulthood – Its subjective world.
Powerful stuff… and that’s just the start.
Psychology and spirituality have become inevitable bedfellows in much of the study of the human, mainly driven by such streams of thought as the Human Potential Movement hosted at Esalen, in California, in the 1960s and 70s. Psychology works with behaviour, or what we call personality. Spirituality looks for fundamental relationships between self and the universe and is now equipped with a powerful vocabulary of how the spiritually-intact infant becomes the self-oppressed adult human.
To study it, we take a journey. It’s an amazing journey, and never fails to move those who have the courage to embark upon it… It’s most certainly not aimed at polishing the personality, though there are benefits to that, too.
The enneagram diagram, above, has two components: the nine-sided glyph (this is the Silent Eye’s version), and a stacked figure which contains four divisions marked Outlook, Passion, Virtue and Reality. These are like a ‘tube’ drilled into the ground of each type, in this case, the Type One (or LUCA Type One, as we’ve named it). The full enneagram is, therefore, a three-dimensional figure in which the nine relationships shown by the original enneagram are consistent with four dimensions of depth.
It’s a bit like a telescope that looks into the depths, and eventually origin, of the person in question. We are all very different but each shares aspects of life’s journey. We all came from a position of total trust (in Mother) to a struggle for independence in the world, and we all shared a difficult journey in which a seemingly common world became ‘our world’ in which personal reactions completely determine how that adult world is perceived.
Our telescope of self is unusual, It is designed for four eyes. Each of these four eyes belongs to us. Use of one eye, looking inwards with self-honesty, will generate the second eye; and so on down the telescope, until we come to the gateway between ‘Virtue’ and ‘Reality’, where deeper rules apply as we come face to face with what is, rather than what is perceived… Each of us has all nine of the types, though we will find ourselves skewed around one particular set of fixations.
LUCA, with all her basic reactions, is still in there, rooted deep. To find her, to take our life history back to where we came from, is as T.S. Eliot wrote, “and the end of our exploring will be to arrive at the place from which we started and to know it for the first time.” (my italics).
This is not regression therapy. It is a fully aware, adult journey of great beauty and power, undertaken in the adult mind, emotions and body via personal guided meditations and self-journeys.
In the next post we will explore what Outlook, Passion, Virtue and Reality really mean in this system. We will also meet another of the types in our story.
End Part Thirteen.
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