I would rather be whole than good. (C.G. Jung)
There’s a mistaken notion among some people that because I’m someone who works to assist others to evolve, I can’t express my complete personhood. It’s all fine and good when I’m posting something on Facebook about what a compassionate group I was part of that day or if I’m sharing in a workshop how the tarot took a client and me to a really rich soul place, but heaven forbid that I express any disappointment or anger about something. Suddenly, I’m attacked as being “negative” or “less than spiritual”. Rubbish.
For me, wholeness — that beingness that already exists at our core — is about embracing the WHOLE self (note the “whole” in “wholeness”). I’m good at what I do in our world because I’m in touch with many facets of my personality: gratitude, awe, wonder, judgement, grief, rage, inspiration, new vision, hope, action, passivity, earth-loving self, comfort creature self, the creative, the spiritual seeker, the snob, the critic, the guide, to name a few. To deny these carries the potential to cut myself off from wholeness. Certainly I carry unconscious shadow material, both frightening and brilliant. That’s part of all of us being human.
Yes, I use terms like “life-sustaining”, “invitation”, “beauty”, and “kindness”. I also use the words “fuck” and “shit” from time to time. To err and to be human make me a better guide and teacher because people’s projections onto me can be shattered and we can get down to doing something useful. I’ve done this with people I’ve admired in the past: “Oh, that person is so wonderful and spiritual.” Then, they did something I perceived as messing up which ticked me off. Afterward, I was able to say to them, “Thank you for being human. It feels good to take my power and gifts back in to myself instead of projecting them onto you.”
I value the part of me that weeps at a Puccini opera and I value the part of me that gets enraged at injustices and foolishness. I love the aspect of myself that can dress up and enjoy a four-course dinner at a table with lace runners and 200-year-old silverware and I love the aspect of myself that can sit on the ground in a pair of shorts and nibble on a sandwich. I like the James who gets annoyed at people spelling “altar” as “alter” and I like the James who realises that there are more pressing issues in our world to address.
I choose to do my best to embrace my full personhood, I choose to do my best to embrace your full personhood, and I choose to have my full personhood embraced as much as possible by others. Let’s find out how we might keep that covenant together.
We began with Carl Jung. Let’s conclude with Julia Cameron:
You cannot name me; I am more than the sum of my parts.