Living meaningfully?

Making an effort to understand one’s Shadow is the first step in Carl Jung’s analytical approach. One begins by observing aspects that one dislikes in another of the same sex – one projects these dark aspects of one’s Self unto others – so we begin our processes of growth by understanding our projections.

The second element in Jung’s therapy is to find meaning in one’s life.  “What is meaning in your life, Steven?”  I have been on the way of individuation, self-actualization all these many years, however, what can I definitively write of my understanding of this trek?  If this is true, that I have always been on this trek and have been writing, all that remains for my life to end happily is to now write one book, The Individuation of Steven Arvid. Yes, I can see it, all that really remains is to pull together what I have already written, polish it, and publish this book. Yes!

How to Stop Wasting Your Life – Carl Jung as Therapist

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Morning Page 9/16/2022

9/16/2022 7:58 AM Morning Page. Friday. 

Good morning!  A mist is clearing and soon our Sun should be making an appearance.  Waiting this astral occurrence, I began my Morning Page where I free-write whatever comes to me. Often what I am surfing enters the flow of energy and here is what is occurring this morning.  I have followed Terence McKenna work and the one below was recently posted.  The phenomenon of synchronicity plays an important role our lives and here we have examined is a mathematical challenge to Darwin’s Theory of Evolution.  Time for another cup of coffee.

Terence McKenna – One of The Great Suppressed Stories of Modern History

Terence McKenna – BLACK SCREEN – Rain & Binaural Beats Sounds Terence McKenna – One of The Great Suppressed Stories of Modern History “All of Modern Science Is Based on The Behest of An Angelic Being” Terence talks about dreams, and from where great ideas comes from, and how it is not being spoken about by educational institutions

Synchronicity is Not Just a Coincidence: What is Synchronicity & What does it Mean?

Synchronicity is Not Just a Coincidence: What is Synchronicity & What does it Mean? Coincidence and synchronicity are both defined as “striking occurrences of two or more events at one time”. The difference is that coincidence is perceived as chance or luck while synchronicity implies the presence of a deeper intelligence at work. The concept of synchronicity eliminates the accident from the nature of this apparently ‘random’ phenomena, and while synchronicities can manifest as something you might want to put in the coincidence box, there is just something about the event that makes you stop in your tracks and question, something about the occurrence that leaves you utterly astonished and wondering if it could be something more.

Mathematical Challenges to Darwin’s Theory of Evolution

Based on new evidence and knowledge that functioning proteins are extremely rare, should Darwin’s theory of evolution be dismissed, dissected, developed or replaced with a theory of intelligent design? Has Darwinism really failed? Peter Robinson discusses it with David Berlinski, David Gelernter, and Stephen Meyer, who have raised doubts about Darwin’s theory in their two books and essay, respectively The Deniable Darwin, Darwin’s Doubt, and “Giving Up Darwin” (published in the Claremont Review of Books). Robinson asks them to convince him that the term “species” has not been defined by the authors to Darwin’s disadvantage. Gelernter replies to this and explains, as he expressed in his essay, that he sees Darwin’s theory as beautiful (which made it difficult for him to give it up): “Beauty is often a telltale sign of truth. Beauty is our guide to the intellectual universe—walking beside us through the uncharted wilderness, pointing us in the right direction, keeping us on track—most of the time.” Gelernter notes that there’s no reason to doubt that Darwin successfully explained the small adjustments by which an organism adapts to local circumstances: changes to fur density or wing style or beak shape. Yet there are many reasons to doubt whether Darwin can answer the hard questions and explain the big picture—not the fine-tuning of existing species but the emergence of new ones. Meyer explains Darwinism as a comprehensive synthesis, which gained popularity for its appeal. Meyer also mentions that one cannot disregard that Darwin’s book was based on the facts present in the 19th century.

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FCHS 1962’s 60th Reunion

Fargo Central High School Class of 1962 60th Reunion in The Park

Fargo Central High School Class of 1962 60th Reunion on The Lake

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The Comey Rule

I re-watched The Comey Rule  [https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Comey_Rule] a TV miniseries based on the book A Higher Loyalty: Truth, Lies, and Leadership by former FBI director James Comey.

The miniseries stars Jeff Daniels as Comey and Brendan Gleeson as President Donald Trump, the spitting image of ‘The Donald’. The two-part miniseries was aired on September 27 and 28 2020 and at times I felt I was again in this nightmare.  What is disturbing is the documentation of Trump’s interactions with the Russians!  After watching this, how can any sane person vote for Trump? However, pundits are now expecting another Trump run for the White House so, we may not have seen the last of Trump. 

For a moment, imagine a 2nd term for Trump.  Can’t imagine, let me help.  Posted below is Victor Davis Hanson on “The Case For Trump”. There, we now have a challenge – a topic for the FCHS Debate In The Park.

Moving back to Taiwan is a possibility for Fannie and me, living 100 miles from the PRC’s President Xi might be preferable – just how dangerous is China?

Cold War II—Just How Dangerous Is China? [https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=E12r-37GZI0].

I am watching this now and trying to find my place in the timeline being reported on.  I am listening and watching to see how I can make a contribution, after all, I lived 17 years in greater China.  I am sensing they are not seeing this history clearly or correctly.  Their analysis of what motivates China is off.  Are these guys using the correct lens to view the deep nature of PRC leaders, using words like “Xi crushed Hong Kong” is seeing this from the western perspective? Asking, “Is this strange ideology sustainable?” is strangely strange itself!  How is Xi’s ideology strange?  A factor in these guys’ thinking is that both of them are western U.S. militarily trained, not educated. However, I expect they have read Sun Tzu’s The Art of War.

Let us see if we can develop a better ‘understanding of the rise of China‘. Economist Martin Jacques asks: “How do we in the West make sense of China and its phenomenal rise?” The author of When China Rules the World examines why the West often puzzles over the growing power of the Chinese economy and offers three building blocks for understanding what China is and will become. Let us do a deep dive into Chinese Thinking! Takes notes on this dive, Coach Barney is watching over our shoulders.

On August 12, 2016, I heard that Donald Trump would be meeting with RNC leaders to discuss the disorder he is causing in his run to be President. So, I decided early in the morning to ask the I Ching about this meeting, the question to the I Ching was, What about Donald Trump’s situation? I received Hexagram 4. Mêng / Youthful Folly with changing lines in the 4 and 5th lines resulting in Hexagram 6. Sung / Conflict. These hexagrams are very accurate and a first reading suggests that an attempt to rein Trump in is going to be difficult – it does not look likely. The full response can be read at I Ching on Trump. We now have a new question for the I Ching – What about Trump’s pending decision to run again for The Presidency? I will return…

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The Internet and Leadership

I remember teaching at the Chinese University of Hong Kong years ago when Kissinger visited the colony. I attended his talk and this Time article, particularly the section on leadership and the internet caught my attention: Henry Kissinger: The Internet Does Not Make Great Leaders, BY BELINDA LUSCOMBE  JULY 3, 2022, where this was written:

“You’re quite gloomy on the effect of the internet on leadership. Why is that?  The internet is an overriding reality of the period, and one should not discuss it as if it could be done away with. It permits a degree of self-education that was inconceivable relatively a few years ago. But manipulating the internet requires such special skills. It can evoke such broad reactions, that the ability to affect the immediate impact of stories or events can become the preoccupation of leaders, rather than a view of a more distant future. And the impact is not just on the internet but on technology. It is now relatively easy to construct a computer assistant for yourself that produces rapid answers to issues that you are addressing. In any one case that is a wonderful help, but over a lifetime and over the educational cycles it may produce an inability to ask the deeper questions. Some of the greatest ideas of history, of philosophy, or literature, came out of the anguish of struggling for understanding, and might never have been reached if there was a helpful assistant who gave an immediately relevant solution” (Time July 25/August 1, 2022: pp.88).

I now remember my experience with the internet began when I started teaching at CUHK in 1980.  I realize while at CUHK teaching the STOT (Student Oriented Teaching) course that the internet was a key source of ‘self-education’ – student-oriented-learning and introduced its use in this class.  I question Henry’s idea that “over a lifetime and over the educational cycles it (technology) may produce an inability to ask the deeper questions.” If anything, the helpful assistant’s immediately relevant solution should drive us still deeper into an issue, searching for deeper relevancy.  After all, this is the essence of the Experiential Learning Methodology from which emerged the One Dimensional Man’s Liberation [https://wordpress.com/post/dialecticanalyticalman.com/1114]:

This blog entry was started some time ago and overlaps others on Donald Trump’s one-dimensionality.  Like earlier entries, it uses Herbert Marcuse’s One dimensional Man’s dialectic-analytical framework, to examine the logic of capitalism. First, ‘one-dimensional man’ thought patterns are discussed and extended to groups, organizations, and cultures before examining the energy in this paradigm needed to change civilization into multi-dimensionality. To demonstrate this phenomenon of one-dimensionality, Donald Trump’s language and behavior, will be used to document this experience and outline the changes required to move into being a multi-dimensional person and from there move forward – beyond capitalism. This methodology has been employed in past blog entries and will continue our effort to understand the issues confronting our civilization.

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One Dimensional Man’s Liberation

Marcuse

This blog entry was started some time ago and overlaps others on Donald Trump’s one-dimensionality.  Like earlier entries, it uses Herbert Marcuse’s One dimensional Man’s dialectic-analytical framework, to examine the logic of capitalism. First, ‘one-dimensional man’ thought patterns are examined, and extended to groups, organizations, and cultures before examining the energy in this paradigm needed to change civilization toward multi-dimensionality. To demonstrate this phenomenon of one-dimensionality, Donald Trump’s language and behavior, will be used to document this experience and outline the changes required to move into being a multi-dimensional person and from there move forward beyond capitalism. This methodology has been employed in past blog entries and will continue our effort to understand the issues confronting today’s civilization.

I recently went to my bookcase looking for Mortimer Adler and Charles Van Doren’s book How to Read a Book and started to re-read Chapter 20 The forth level of reading: Syntopical reading – reading two or more book simultaneously on the same topic. I am making use of this chapter while reading Nassim Taleb’s book The Black Swan and Herbert Marcuse’s book One Dimensional Man and attempt to demonstrate how syntopical reading operates as we examine the thesis that Donald Trump’s election as President is a black swan event that electing a one-dimensional man.

Past Blog entries have been experiential, supported with readings, documentaries, and Web content; which were reflected on, adding to our abstract conceptual (AC) knowledge; and then allowing us to write anticipating what is unfolding. Black swan events are coming and by repeating this process we expect to build our understanding of emerging events, but doing this requires two-dimensional thought. This is Kolb”s dialectic learning model underlying this blogging experience. To demonstrate the phenomenon of one-dimensional man, Donald Trump’s thinking processes as demonstrated in his language and behavior, are used to document our experience and outline a change strategy required to move toward multi-dimensionality. This methodology has been employed in past Blog entries and will continue our effort to understand the issue confronting our civilization.

So, as these past blog entries are referenced they re-enter our dialectic-analytical framework of inquiry. The blog entry, Black Swan Trump, begins this trek, which initiated the inquiry into Trump’s election as a black swan event. We add Herbert Marcuse’s book One-dimensional man, to our investigatory tool kit and on this Presidential Inaugural Day, January 20, 2017, we begin following President Donald as the Presidency of the United States. As he delivers his inaugural speech listen carefully to his to word choice, sentence structure, paragraph meaning, and his ‘great ideas’.

What is interesting in Mortimer Adler’s interview below, The Great Ideas is that he can tell by the way a person speaks – the words,  sentences, paragraphs, the themes developed, the speaker’s dimensionality of thought. This is the same thesis in Marcuse’s One-dimensional Man essay that will be presented. This is a Sherlock task – listen carefully to Trump’s rhetoric beginning with his inaugural speech.  An objective is to examine Trump’s words, sentences, paragraphs, we are not sure Trump can think in paragraphs but we will soon see, as we are told he is writing his inaugural speech. As we listen to Trump’s speech, we need to listen with Mortimer’s model in mind. The other Adler book I took down from my bookcase was “How to speak and to listen”.  Okay, this project’s investigation will continue. Enjoy this day!

Herbert Marcuse, “Liberation from the Affluent Society” (1967 lecture in London)

Mortimer J Adler – The Great Ideas

The great ideas Adler mentions are those of justice, freedom, labor, language, law, infinity, mortality, and soul. When Mortimer is then asked by William F. Buckley why these great ideas are not being taught in schools today like they were at the height of the British Empire, Adler’s response is shallow – “they were stupid”.  What has made them stupid, should have next been asked. Marcuse’s more dialectic-analytical response is that the economic capitalism of 1817 has changed – the leaders managing Great Britain’s global empire were taught the Classics in order to think on their own while on the other side of the Globe. It is assumed that we do not need this thinking today – we have an increasingly centralized authoritarian web system that does the thinking for us at the top. All that is needed is to teach labor to fit into the pace of the machine – thinking is not allowed. This is what schools of business do – they do not teach the skill of critical thinking, if they had, we would not have had the 2008 financial crisis or the ones coming.

To begin we can re-listen to Herbert Marcuse introduce this thought, which we will begin to apply to our one dimensional society, with the objective of understanding the processes of critical thinking needed to reach a multi-dimensional society

Herbert Marcuse and the Frankfurt School (1977)

Now let us listen to Donald Trump Press Conference Cold Open – SNL

We now watch the real Donald Trump’s entire CIA speech.

I had been waiting to see how the unfolding events would get me directly into beginning this essay on Trump’s one-dimensionality. It already had a draft underway but the door into this complex topic needed to open more. Then Chuck Todd’s interview with John Lewis gave me the idea, Trump’s Legitimacy. However, Lewis’s logic that Putin’s interference defines illegitimacy is ‘surface illegitimacy’ and likely will never be substantiated – but a lot of time and our money will be spent on its investigation. What is needed is a ‘deep illegitimacy’ that strikes at the core of the United States democracy-capitalism illusion.  Marcuse’s Chapter 4 The closing of the universe of discourse (84-120) is where he presents the logic legitimacy.

Rep. John Lewis: Donald Trump Won’t Be A ‘Legitimate President’ | NBC News

Reading Marcuse requires reading-deep – it is the challenging reading Adler suggests that sharpens our thinking. Marcuse suggests that the logic of legitimacy in the 2016 election emanated from our “one-dimensional society.” He argues that the logical underpinning of U.S. democracy is not only illegitimate, authoritarian, dangerous, but it is also fascist to use Trump’s description of  CNN News.

The title of this blog, One Dimensional Trump I realized would be the first of a series exploring Marcuse thought. The first blogging theme to unfold after this introduction took the title “Trump Legitimacy”. The stimulus for this title comes from Chuck Todd’s interview with Rep. John Lewis saying that Trump is not a legitimate President.

PSS How did you like the image of Arnold freezing Donald?

Black Swan Trump Freezing to Death

https://dialecticanalyticalman.com/2017/01/14/black-swan-trump-freezing-to-death/

The End of Times Trump Begins A Radical Revolution

PSS How did you like the image of Arnold freezing Donald?

Black Swan Trump Freezing to Death

https://dialecticanalyticalman.com/2017/01/14/black-swan-trump-freezing-to-death/

The End of Times Trump Begins A Radical Revolution

What if, after John Lewis, the congressman and civil rights hero, questioned the legitimacy of Trump’s election, Trump hadn’t sneered that Lewis was “all talk, talk, talk” and “should spend more time on fixing and helping his district, which is in horrible shape.” What if Trump instead tweeted: “John Lewis, a great American, let’s walk together through your district and develop a plan to improve people’s lives there. Obama was all talk. I’m all action. Call me Friday after 1 p.m. 202-456-1414. I’ll show you how legit I am.”

Herbert Marcuse and the Frankfurt School (1977)

Donald Trump Press Conference Cold Open – SNLhttps://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4_Gf0mGJfP8

Mortimer J Adler — Speaks about happiness.

PSS How did you like the image of Arnold freezing Donald?

Herbert Marcuse – The Radical Revolution

Trump legitimacy

Hello Charile, Yes, when you pass though Fargo, we should chat, especially on your work on the Langer’s and ND’s new governor. May I respectfully correct your observation that Burgum has not yet done anything stupid? He moved quickly before his primary opponent to endorse Trump. Before that, I pondered voting for him and immediately junked the thought. The issue I have been working on is that as a corporate CEO millionaire, maybe billionaire, to use Marcuse’s book Burgum is likely a “one-dimensional man”. Stay tuned.

I have been waiting to see how the unfolding news would get me directly into writing the essay, “Trump One Dimensional Man” – it already has a draft going but the door in needs to open more clearly. Then Chuck Todd’s interviewed with John Lewis gave me a new title, “Trump Legitimacy.” However, Lewis’s logic that Putin’s interference defines legitimacy is shaky and very likely will never be substantiated. What Marcuse does, so very well but requires deep reading, is to present the logic of legitimacy in the 2016 election as being “one dimensional.” He argues that this logical view of democracy is not only illegitimate, dangerous, authoritarian, and to use Trump’s term in calling out CNN fascist.

Charlie, your quote from Orwell from his essay on Rudyard Kipling is Marcuse thesis and is a critical logic. When I read this, “All left-wing parties in highly industrialized countries are at bottom a sham, because they make it their business to fight against something which they do not really wish to destroy.” I remembered Slavoj Žižek saying this same thing and then saying it was the role of Marxists to help “left-wing parties” smell the roses. Zizek makes this point at about maker 25.00 in What does it mean to be a revolutionary today? Marxism 2009. His joke about cutting off the balls of capitalists and the only thing noticed is that their voices go up an octave is funny. The challenge is doing this. Just recently, in the back of my mind, is the fact that HPR a “left-wing” capitalist corporation – will just let that percolate.

I watched the Frontline documentary “Divided States of America” these last two nights and now see it supporting Taleb’s book, Black Swan, point – a Black Swan is not seen coming, only with retrospective reflection do we understand it.  It’s Trump’s road to the White House 1.24.2017 will add more to Trump A Black Swan.

Enjoy the inaugural! I hear Trump is writing his own speech. I will get to the reading you sent.

More later, Steven

PS Instead of coffee maybe we can shit together! This is Slavoj Zizek on Donald Trump suggestion, which leads him to address the legitimacy of the election. However, where in mainstream media or in Trump’s cabinet will be see the legitimacy of our economic system openly discussed, when Trump is the deal maker – the ultimate capitalist. I really have opened a document titled “The art of the Lie.”

If we are truly living as Zizek suggests that we are living in the end of times, then we might want to consider Herbert Marcuse’s The Radical Revolution. How is one preparing for the ending?

Living in the End Times According to Slavoj Zizek

The other Adler book I took down from my library was “How to speak and to listen”.

Trump Inauguration Speech (FULL) | ABC News

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How Did Vladimir Putin Rise To Power? How Will He Maintain Power? What Is The Will To Power?

Oliver Stone’s work needs to be reviewed again! It is becoming clear that the US misread history in the past and should we assume it is still misreading history, NOW, in its making. We will attempt to psychoanalyze the Will to Power.

Part 1: Oliver Stone Interviews Putin on U.S.-Russia Relations, 2016 Election, Snowden & NATO


Part 2: Oliver Stone Interviews Putin on U.S.-Russia Relations, 2016 Election, Snowden & NATO

The Putin Files: Julia Loffe

Putin’s Road to War: Julia Ioffe (interview) | FRONTLINE

As we listen to these programs on Vladimir Putin, we begin assembling a psychoanalytical framework with which to approach his need for power.

The Will to Power (GermanDer Wille zur Macht) is a book of notes drawn from the literary remains (or Nachlass) of the philosopher Friedrich Nietzsche by his sister Elisabeth Förster-Nietzsche and Peter Gast (Heinrich Köselitz). The title derived from a work that Nietzsche himself had considered writing. The work was first translated into English by Anthony M. Ludovici in 1910, and it has since seen several other translations and publications (Wikipedia).

The Will to Power by Nietzsche

The will to power is one of the most fundamental concepts in the philosophy of Friedrich Nietzsche. It is also one of his most complex concepts as it was never systematically defined in his works, leaving its interpretation open to debate. The central point revolves around gaining power over oneself, not others. It is the expression of self-overcoming, becoming who you truly are. This video intends to shed light on this concept, tracing all the way back from his psychological insights of the “desire for power” to the conception of “will to power”, as well as its relationship with the “will to existence”, “will to live” and “will to truth”. We will be focusing on what Nietzsche actually wrote and published himself during his active years. We will be making some references to his posthumously published notes (The Will to Power) where it is appropriate.

⌛ Timestamps

0:00 Introduction
2:07 Desire for Power: A Psychological Insight
5:37 The Origin of the “Will to Power”
7:18 Will to Power and Self-overcoming
8:57 Will to Power and Sublimation
10:24 Will to Power as Dualistic
11:10 Will to Power vs Will to Existence (Nietzsche contra Darwin)
13:55 Will to Power vs Will to Live (Nietzsche contra Schopenhauer)
15:49 Will to Power vs Will to Truth (Nietzsche contra Philosophers)
16:56 Will to Power and Metaphysics
20:44 Conclusion

We will now take some time to amplify what we have just read/viewed and begin a psychoanalytical analysis of Vladimir Putin.

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The USA Trickster Myth

The Flash and the Trickster’s Boys Night Out

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Billiette Calling! Born Free!

AA FROM THE WOMAN’s SIDE

Born Free! by Billiette S. July 1974

   When I say, “I am glad I am an alcoholic”, some people look at me as if I have rocks in my head.  I am not ashamed of having been afflicted by this illness any more than I am ashamed of having had the measles, which left me with a greater handicap of extreme near-sightedness.  For years I went around half-blind and ashamed of my thick glasses for they are outside of me; and, if people don’t like me because of them, that’s their problem.  Alcoholism left me, not with weakness but the strength and courage to become a mature human being – Born free of the personality defects that made me a self-centered, ego-centric person.

   But it is not just the alcoholic that is in a prison of self today.  Their prisons of self are filled with projection (blaming everyone and everything for their problems), self-pity (poor me, everyone has it better than me), martyrdom (look at all I have done for you), self-hatred (killing, other than with guns or knifing them with their venomous tongues).  Perfectionism, procrastination, dishonesty, resentments, renationalization, intolerance, bigotry, prejudice, lust, gossip, and greed are human defects that make mighty prison bars to look through.

   The alcoholic can break through these bars by taking the 4th and 5th Steps and living the 12 Steps of AA.  But what do the other poor people do living behind these bars becoming workaholics, foodaholics, and psychosomatics leaving them mentally or emotionally ill, filled with anxieties, fear, and hatred?  Do they die without ever being set free of their earthly prison?  That is why I say, “I am glad I am an alcoholic, a recovering alcoholic – Born Free – released from the prison of that phony world that so many people are living in today.”

   AA has taught me not to hate myself or society – born free to love my fellow man.  AA has taught me courage, the courage to become an independent person – born free of fear and despair.  AA has taught me to be honest with myself and others – born free of lies and alibis.  AA has taught me to be me and not to be a phony – born free of inferiority feelings.  AA has taught me to be thankful for what I’ve got today – born free of jealousy of what others have.

  In AA I found God and fellowship.  I have learned to know the truth about myself and “the truth shall set you free.”  Yes, I am glad I am an alcoholic – born free to grow, to change, and to live as I have never lived before – free from anxiety, fears, hatred, and guilt!  The happy person does not always have wealth, fame, or intelligence in large measure.  But h/she does have the ability to be grateful for whatever she has, be it much or little.


Receiving Billiette’s Call – Born Free!

   Billiette’s Born Free column has many ideas needing attention!  So many that we will only tend a few here, with others carried forward to other Callings. Billie begins with what seems a strange idea that she is happy she became an alcoholic – it was an infliction that woke her up to the mess she was making of her life – a beautiful life she had been building with hard work growing up in the 1920s and 30s without a stable father but with a strong mother – Amanda. What could have happened to Billie’s thinking to cause such a tragedy?  I sense she is telling us in this column but it is a challenge to understand. It seems Mom’s extreme near-sightedness and her thick glasses affected her ability to actually see outside things and people, thus causing her to shut herself off from others. Billie was finally able to overcome her psychological isolation with her involvement in Fargo’s AA Chapter. 

   Billiette reveals a fact of life that I think we all experience in some way or other – it is an early life experience that leaves a ‘scare’ in us.  In Billie’s case, it was her poor eyesight requiring her to wear think glasses resulting in a self-image that was ill. She overcomes this and becomes a successful dancer, married high school star athlete, becomes a good wife, and the mother of five sons. Billie is one of Fargo’s elite personalities when alcohol grabs hold and brings her crashing down. However, she then says that “Alcoholism left me, not with a weakness but a strength and courage to become a mature human being – Born free of the personality defects that made me a self-centered, ego-centric person.”  I have an issue with Mom suggesting here that self-centered and ego-centrism are personality defects. They are essential aspects for developing our personalities, however, in Billie’s case alcohol interfered with her continuing development into adulthood.

   Billiette has identified a key factor in this development, our interaction with others, which involves projection, she defines it as “blaming everyone and everything for their problems.” Wikipedia’s definition is that “psychological projection is the process of misinterpreting what is ‘inside’ as coming from ‘outside’. It forms the basis of empathy by the projection of personal experiences to understand someone else’s subjective world. In its malignant forms, it is a defense mechanism in which the ego defends itself against disowned and highly negative parts of the self by denying their existence in themselves and attributing them to others, breeding misunderstanding and causing untold interpersonal damage. A bully may project their own feelings of vulnerability onto the target, or a person who is confused may project feelings of confusion and inadequacy onto other people. Projection incorporates blame-shifting and can manifest as shame dumping. Psychological projection has been described as an early phase of introjection”. Here is a lot to unpack, which we will do.  

   To begin, here is an excellent presentation on Carl Jung, the Shadow, and the Dangers of Psychological Projection and the video transcript.  We will use these resources as we move further into Billiette’s experience and understanding of alcohol and drug abuse. Open your journal and write a page on what has and/or is happening in your life.

Steven S. February 3, 2022

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Billiette Calling! Giving Thanks

AA FROM THE WOMAN’S SIDE

Giving Thanks by Billiette S. November 1973

   ‘Tis the season of Thanksgiving and it brings to mind that coming into AA is like entering through the small end of a cornucopia – a horn of plenty.  We enter feeling rather small, defeated, lonely, a lost soul.  We wonder, what we’ll find here?

   When I first entered the cornucopia of Alcoholics Anonymous, my eyes went searching up the empty walls, and they’re looking down from the top were a lot of smiling, friendly faces, and their “Higher Powers”.  They held out their hands to encourage me to fill my cornucopia with the fruits of life that AA has to offer.

   First of all, they tell us to throw away our grapes of wrath and put into our new life a date – our dry-date.  We then add the fruits of faith, hope, and love.  Then a plentiful crop of trust, patience, humility, forgiveness, truthfulness, serenity, helpfulness, optimism, and cheerfulness is added.

   Then sprinkle it all with nuts for we all need humor in our lives.  To be able to live and to laugh at it all is not easy, but it is a realistic goal to achieve at the top of our cornucopia.

   Life isn’t always a bowl of cherries and I, for one, have not had the easiest years.  However, by the Grace of God and AA, I have much to be thankful for!  Last year at this time I asked God to let me die and take the pain from my legs.  Recently, at our 26th Anniversary Banquet, I danced without pain – something I never thought I’d ever be able to enjoy again.  I danced, thanking God for every step I danced; thanking God for all those wonderful sobered-up alcoholics – oh, such beautiful people; thanking God that I, too, was an alcoholic or else would never have known such love; thanking God for Father John, who always lifts me spiritually when the baas hit me: thank God for all the blessings I have received in my AA way of life.

   I was filling my cornucopia with the most important fruit of all Thanksgivingness to God.

   A Thanksgiving Proclamation was stated by Calvin Coolidge, that is so appropriate to us in AA that it should be a must in all our cornucopias –

We have been a most blessed people.  We ought to be the most thankful people.

     So, to be forever a favored, grateful, blessed and thankful people, we must always be aware of the grapes of wrath and remove them from our cornucopias.  If they remain, they may ferment and we all know the consequences of consuming the residue of fermented grapes!

Prayer of The Month

Our Father, it is our need to bee eternally and daily grateful, yet we are inclined to be forgetful.  So, during this period of national Thanksgiving, help us to be more then ever mindful of that which we receive by looking for opportunities to share whatever is ours to share – in gratitude. Amen

Receiving Billiette’s Call – Giving Thanks

   Billie presents several images to assist our Receiving Giving Thanks – they are the cornucopia, grapes of wrath, and a wine press – she is writing this as I can remember her preparing our 1973 Thanksgiving Turkey Dinner  – oh, what a thankful image to still have! The cornucopia image reveals that we all enter the World naked, with no possessions, and slowly move into life gathering the fruits that nourish our well-being.  The Grapes of Wrath, of course, brings to mind John Steinbeck’s famous novel, which received the 1962 Nobel Prize, which was a time Billie and Orlando had built their new basement bar and were heavily entertaining their Elk’s Club crowd.  In April 1962, I had my first beer, a quart, in the back seat of Rick’s car, graduating from high school a month later.  This memory even now gives me a headache.

   Steinbeck’s novel was published in 1939 the year my parents graduated from Fargo Central High School – WWII was just getting started.  Arvid Scherling’s book The Dogma of Sinful Constitution was 10 years old and my grandparents, Arvid and Sophia, were entering the 20th year of Scherling Photography’s operation. I read the Wikipedia entry on John’s book and the section on ‘Development’ tells in mid-January 1939 John wrote Viking Press editor Pascal Covici wanting him to understand the intent of his book.  John states the intent of writing the book: “Throughout I’ve tried to make the reader participate in the actuality, what he takes from it will be scaled on his own depth and shallowness. There are five layers in this book, a reader will find as many as he can and he won’t find more than he has in himself.”[13] Susan Shillinglaw’s (2014) book On Reading the Grapes of Wrath writes about this very interesting psychoanalytical statement.

   The Amazon entry calls Shillinglaw’s book biography of a book that “explores the cultural, social, political, scientific, and creative impact of The Grapes of Wrath and its enduring legacy.” What is important to realize is that the conclusion of the Joad family story “remains eerily relevant in today’s America and stands as a portrait of the conflict between the powerful and the powerless, in the souls of the people.”  So, again we are encouraged to examine the soul’s logical life and end with a suggestion to watch The Parallel Society vs Totalitarianism | How to Create a Free World [https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=wJr7awWGWAo]. And remember this was posted some time ago, Capitalism: A Love Story [https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=LUpnFNUmfKw]

Steven S. March 25, 2022

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