3.8 The ART Of SELF-ANALYSIS
and SELF-SYNTHESIS

"One fact which must be appreciated for applying this theory is the essential
individual uniqueness of each of our minds, of each of our brains. It is no easy
work to analyze either one's self or someone else.  This theory is not, cannot be, a
miracle key to a given human mind. It is devilishly hard work digging up enough of
the basic facts and enough of the basic programs and metaprograms controlling
each mind from within to change its poor operations into better ones"
........Dr John C Lilly

" The Buddha invites us to be mindful of the mind - to be aware of the constant
inner dialog, the stream of thoughts and images. It is possible, says the Buddha
to observe the mind with the mind. Because the mind can be observed with the
mind, we can begin to become free. To be aware of the thought stream is to
step out of the bureaucracy of the ego.".....J Kornfield

“Nothing can harm you as much as your own thoughts unguarded.” ..Buddha

I seek strength, not to be greater than my brother, but to fight my greatest
enemy—myself.......American Indian Prayer (As Long as the Rivers Shall Flow,
War Resisters League, 1974.)

" When you introspect, when you examine yourself, there is a kind of
loop in which you are out of yourself and then into yourself, and what
you perceive is yourself, your own consciousness. When we think on
ourselves, when we reflect on ourselves, what we are doing is turning
all of our perceptual and conceptual apparatus into a kind of loop and
taking our self as the object of our perception and consciousness."
.........R. Solomon  TTC

"The gods approve of  the depth, and not the tumult, of the soul." .....Wordsworth

 

It follows from the previous workout on the sub, supra and normal consciousness that

the goal of Self-Analysis should be to analyze or stalk one's sub-conscious behavior

patterns and their influence on the conscious patterns, and thereby bring about an

integral or  unified   behavior at a conscious level, and once is is accomplished to a

sufficient stage, the process of Self-Synthesis of one's conscious self with the Supra

conscious self and beyond self  can be attempted - a far more difficult, sensitive and

tricky  process.  Thus as the analytic, rational  process  is  indispensable for the

integration of  the subconscious with the conscious, similarly the synthesis,

creative process is indispensable for the integration with the supra-conscious.

"It is the individual who knows how little they know about themselves
who stands the most reasonable chance of finding out something about
themselves before they die"....S. I. Hayakawa

In the last analysis every life is the realization of a whole, that is, of a self,
for which reason this realization can also be called “individuation.~Carl Jung

What exactly this means or will mean is dependent upon one's own uniqueness,

purpose and Will, whether these are primary, that is, of the supra-conscious or

the secondary ; of the conscious. The realization and development of the Will

and its acquisition of potency depends greatly upon the manifestation of the

supra-conscious at crucial turning points.

The sub-conscious here is assumed to have been transcended and integrated into

the conscious without which neither is one's uniqueness nor one's Will realized,

but remains obscured and suppressed by the sub-conscious in varying degrees

or becomes subject or subservient to the norms and demands of

Society or Culture.

"The Shadow is a moral problem that challenges the whole ego-personality,
for no one can become conscious of the shadow without considerable moral
effort. To become conscious of it involves recognizing the dark aspects of the
personality as present and real. This act is the essential condition for any
kind of self-knowledge, and it therefore, as a rule, meets with considerable
resistance. Indeed, self-knowledge as a psychotherapuetic measure frequently
requires much painstaking work extending over a long period of time."...Jung

2.8.1 SELF ANALYSIS : The Necessity For

" Art is most pernicious when it poses as a spiritual achievement
and inhibits serious reflection and self-criticism. Enjoyment of art is
soothing, and may persuade us that we 'understand' ( life, people,
morality ) and need make no further efforts. We feel that we are
already wise and good." ....Iris Murdoch

"The man who can put himself in the place of other men, who can
understand the workings of their minds, need never worry about
what the future has in store for him.".....Owen Young

As it has been pointed out above, the synthesis process which is essential

for any creative, artistic activity is crucial for the supra-conscious to be active,

however its manifestation is not likely to be powerful enough or effective

enough if the sub-conscious has not been mastered. That is why it is being

insisted here that self-analysis must be the initial process for the exploration

into one's own depths, and it must be initiated and carried out by one's own

efforts.

"But how shall I get ideas? "Keep your wits open! Observe! Observe!
Study! Study! But above all, Think! Think! And when a noble image is
indelibly impressed upon the mind -- Act!"....Orison S Marden

So we see here that the process of self-analysis is the most basic and crucial

restructuring process. Unfortunately, many or rather, most practices just bypass

this process, through meditative and similar practices that result in reducing the

structure to its bare minimal size. This concept-belief structure is considered by

these type of practitioners to be a hindrance, ( not a challenge ) and all concepts

are taken as illusory rather than tools of understanding, which have potential

applicability in comprehension as well as expression.

'In contrast to the meditation found in yoga practice, the psychoanalytic aim
is to observe the shadowy presentation — whether in the form of images
or of feelings — that are spontaneously evolved in the unconscious psyche
and appear without his bidding to the man who looks within. In this way we
find once more things that we have repressed or forgotten. Painful though it
may be, this is in itself a gain — for what is inferior or even worthless belongs
to me as my Shadow and gives me substance and mass.   How can I be
substantial if I fail to cast a Shadow? I must have a dark side also if I am to
be whole; and insasmuch as I become conscious of my Shadow I also
remember that I am a human being like any other".....Jung

"The man whose whole activity is diverted to inner meditation becomes
insensible to all his surroundings. His passions are mere appearances,
being sterile. They are dissipated in futile imaginings, producing
nothing external to themselves.".................Emile Durkheim

In this method ( meditation ) there is the additional danger that strong elements

of this structure remain embedded in the sub-conscious, since this structure

having been built on and around the survival and reward-punishment

systems, remains operative till the death of an individual being.

It is only rigorous analysis that reveals the sub-consciously

hidden control programs and their sources or roots.

This fact is however denied by such practitioners simply because that most of such

practices operate from the belief that there is no such thing as the self - its all

an illusion, they insist, and therefore there can be no self-analysis. In this manner

therefore they deny the most appropriate use of one of our most powerful

faculties and an entire aspect of human activity is thus invalidated.

There is thus a loss of vital functionality with methods like meditation,

that suppress the development of the structure of one's mind, or

worse, prevent deep self analysis.

This is not to say that such practices have no value.

Meditation does have stress reducing and other physiological benefits,

however the cost paid in terms of loss of rational, analytical and intellectual

functionality must always be weighed against the benefits.

Ultimately everything boils down to what is valid for oneself.

"Life is a short day. But it is also a working day. Activity may lead to evil.
But inactivity cannot lead to good".....Hannah More

For people who are not self-analytical and   self-exploring types, perhaps meditation

is the best path for longevity, peace of mind, efficiency etc. But for people who have a

self-analytical nature or intellectually oriented predilection, suppressing or dissolving

stress, anger, irritability can be counterproductive because these are vital indicators

of deeply operating beliefs and control programs that may need to be exposed, or

if dealt with, and under conscious control, then anger and irritability can be

powerful creative forces. Particularly for the analytic knife.

"The goal of catharsis is full confession - no merely intellectual acknow-
ledgement of the facts, but their confirmation by the heart and the actual
release of suppressed emotions."........C. G. Jung

The value of the conscious internal use of the analytic process to study its own

operating mechanism lies in digging up deeply hidden sub-conscious control programs

that determine the choices we make without second thought, because these hidden

sub-conscious programs by their control over our choices made, suppresses the

manifestation, as well as the potential development of our true nature.

"Get the habit of analysis- analysis will in time enable synthesis to
become your habit of mind".....Frank Lloyd Wright

Once a basic analysis process has been setup and is operational at the conscious

level,  the   aperture  for  the  manifestation of the Supra-conscious opens up at

the conscious control   level.   Thus the road towards the integration with one's

core nature opens up and the end result should be : to be able to access one's

core nature and act upon its command whenever required ; to be able to develop

and maintain a state of fluidity ; to consolidate and bring into an efficient order

- one's held knowledge ; to get rid of all that is redundant.

All this is not impossible if one is able to overcome initial hurdles, and that

is where it all starts, for the hurdles and difficulties are themselves the

challenges that have to be successfully tackled. To give up, be defeated

at the very first step is the most common human tragedy.

"To dare is to lose one's footing momentarily. Not to dare is to lose
oneself " ( all-together ).....Soren Aabye Kierkegaard

The analytic knife, if properly directed, is a very powerful tool for cutting one's own self,

particularly the known self,   to pieces in order to gain access and observe the underlying

operating mechanisms of one's sub conscious mind and their influence. By this process

one gains control over these mechanisms so as to unify these with the conscious.

How and when the analytic knife is used is an art that needs to be developed, and

its usefulness grows as one gets even the slightest toehold of success. One must

be at least somewhat conscious of the motivating force (the hand that holds and

thrusts the knife), how it is handled and balanced ( the handle and art of gripping

the handle), towards what and when it is pointed or directed at, or the purpose

of the exercise ( the blade and the point ).

Once this is clear, i.e., the motivation, the timing and the purpose, then the further

part will depend upon how the cut up pieces are utilized or handled  ( the depth

and style of the cut, i.e., the post cut analysis and sub analysis) without losing sight

of the overall picture. The pieces are then experimented with for their properties,

attributes, combinations and interrelationships ( the post cut synthesis).

"Defining myself, as opposed to being defined by others, is one of
the most difficult challenges I face".......Carol Moseley-Braun

 

3.8.1 THE DARK SIDE

One of the foremost goals of self - analysis is to bring into the

conscious observation level the dark, destructive side of one's

nature,  and   behavior.  Especially in one's relationship with

other beings. This is one area which needs constant effort.

But first and foremost should be the acknowledgement that

each one of us human beings has a dark, destructive aspect.

Rather, the truth, if fully acknowledged, is scary : our nature

is on the whole more destructive than creative, but this is

sadly nowhere to be acknowledged, neither in religion and

far less in the sciences.

" How can I be substantial if I fail to cast a shadow ? I must have a
dark side also if I am to be whole.  Human nature has also a black
side,  and  not man alone  possesses this side ;  but his works,  his
institutions and his convictions. Even our purest and holiest beliefs
can be traced to the crudest origins ; we build our houses from the
foundation up.".......C. G. Jung

3.8.2 THE UN-ANALYSABLE

When one comes to the point that a thorough and sufficient self-analysis has been

done, one is bound to encounter that which defies further analysis. These can be

strange unaccounted emotions, feelings, vague memories, un-analyzable tendencies

or preferences or interests. These are indicative of the unknown self, the supra-

conscious,  the deeply hidden motivations and moving forces of one's own Will.

In  critical   situations  of  self-analysis,  self-observation, in an

unusual or crisis situation, these subtle forces can be realized

by the conscious.

It is important to observe and realize these, because these are the indicators of one's

Will and core predilections. The Will can only be developed further if it is realized and

nurtured by the conscious. The whole exercise of self-analysis becomes fruitless if

one cannot discover and develop one's Will, predilection, purpose and uniqueness.

 

3.8.3 THE DYNAMICS OF A CRISIS

"Artists go through periodic crises in which they feel an urge to destroy
themselves. This is important, because if we succeed in mastering the
crisis we rise again, as if reborn, from our own ashes"......Antoni Tàpies

“Without struggle, no progress and no result. Every breaking of habit
produces a change in the machine.”...Gurdjieff

“In fact, once he is motivated no one can change more completely than the
man who has been at the bottom. I call myself the best example of that.”
― Malcolm X, The Autobiography of Malcolm X

"You don't know who you are until you are under stress. You don't know
who you are until you are placed in situations that finds you out. They
make you visible, readable ( to yourself ). You can't do it yourself, it
happens because you are in a situation that is scrutinizing you, self-
scrutiny ( without the situation) is not going to get the job done. This
is the existential Conrad - that you don't know until you have been
tested.".....TTC A. Weinstein

"A good scare is worth more to a man than good advice."
- Edgar Watson Howe

“Failure isn’t a necessary evil. In fact, it isn’t evil at all. It is a necessary
 consequence of doing something new.”
― Ed Catmull, Creativity, Inc.: Overcoming the Unseen Forces
 That Stand in the Way of True Inspiration


3.8.3.1 THE KNOCK OF THE UNKNOWN

A crisis is an unusual situation of tension and conflict. It is a situation loaded

with unforeseen possibilities as well as risks. A crisis may resolve in a creative

outcome ( breakthrough) or result in a breakdown. Either outcome is

indicative of the course to be taken, possibilities to be explored, forces

to be tackled or unknowns to be realized. A crisis is a potent, explosive

situation ; a turning point, a critical crossroad. The unexpected, the

unknown knocking on the door, demanding action.

A crisis is a condition that forces itself upon someone, and hence its

indicative value.

Because a crisis, despite its potency, is never sought by anyone, because

human nature by default not only prefers a state of stability, tranquility,

and peace or bliss, but also positively seeks a placid, undisturbed, state.

Rather, people spend most of their time and energy to avoid a crisis

from developing. All kinds of contingent measures are taken to avoid

a crisis, for a crisis means change, upsets and instability.

"Each of us guards a gate of change that can only be opened from the
inside. We cannot open the gate of another, either by argument or by
emotional appeal"..........Marilyn Ferguson

“We must remember that failure gives us chances to grow, and we
 ignore those chances at our own peril.”
― Ed Catmull, Creativity, Inc.: Overcoming the Unseen Forces
 That Stand in the Way of True Inspiration

  CHANGE : Expectations and Unexpected

A crisis is a rapidly changing situation that cannot be dealt with

by the available routines. A state of flux that cannot be handled

by the currently held concepts and beliefs.

Most people shun any change and instability. But the exceptional

ones who do seek change, do so mostly because of expected and

anticipated positive outcomes in terms of health and wealth.

Only those changes are sought that do not imply a personal crisis,

only anticipated personal benefits. When a crisis looms up, only

then such a change is shunned, or an escape route sought.

Within these exceptional ones there are still further exceptions who

seek change because they MUST, without anticipation of positive

outcome, and disregarding the risks involved. Without knowing

the reasons to do so.

 CRISIS as CHALLENGE

"Virtue is a state of war, and to live in it, we have always
to combat with ourselves".......Rousseau

An unknown, un-analyzable force or motivation compels them to seek

change, because they are not satisfied with what they already know

or behold or have accomplished. And if the change leads to a crisis,

then the crisis itself is recognized as a challenge. And therein lies the

potential of a crisis : a crisis throws up the toughest challenges.

Especially challenges that involve a life and death situation. It is only

in such situations that one can find remarkable hidden resources,

capabilities and abilities within oneself. These are never brought

out and tested in normal, routine conditions, only when a crisis

condition arises. A routine, mundane situation can never

push a being to the limits to which a being can go to,

only exceptional situations that demand exceptional

responses.

" There is the despair of not being conscious of having a self - that
 there is this integrated narrative that you call your life.  Not just  a
 scene by scene or event by event narrative but rather a connected
 narrative - a connecting thread  in the story. That's the despair which
  fills you with emptiness when you go ' what does my life mean ?', and
 there is no narrative to fill it into. What is more it may never even occur
to you. Some people die without ever being aware of being alive.

  The most severe form of despair is that you are unaware that you are
 in despair - that's the incurable kind. The reason that it's incurable is
 that there is no crisis that can make one aware of despair. A crisis
 will make you face despair - and while the crisis won't cure it - you
 will know more about what you are as a self."

……..Rick Roderick ( TTC – Philosophy and Human Values)

 

 POTENTIAL OPPORTUNITIES

A Crisis is therefore an opportunity for an explorer in the following

ways :

A crisis invariably points out the direction of one's Will.

It reveals hidden resources and faculties that cannot be revealed

in ordinary circumstances.

It forces marshalling and consolidation of resources and faculties.

And so brings a being close to the totality of one's Self.

It brings forth the best out of one's individuality and uniqueness.

It puts to test the applicability of one's knowledge.

It reveals what part of one's learning is redundant, and what

is not. Therefore it is an indicator of what one needs to keep

and what to get rid of.

It is the only way that one's weaknesses and limitations are

exposed ( if one has provided for a provision to stalk one's

weaknesses and limitations, without which a crisis will only

turn out to be an avoidance and escape exercise, and most

people by default opt for this ).

"For a typically healthy being, illness can even be a strong stimulus
to life, for an even richer life. This is indeed how I now regard my
long period of illness: I discovered life afresh, as it were, myself
included; I tasted all good and even trifling things in such a way that
others cannot easily do - I created my philosophy from my will for
health, for life.....
For I must ask you to take note of this; it was during those years when
my life force was at its lowest ebb that I ceased being a pessimist; the
instinct of self-recovery forbade me to adopt a philosophy of poverty
and discouragement." .....Nietzsche

 APPROACHING ONE'S LIMITS

The limitations are further pointers of one's will, and thus the

importance of reaching out and realizing one's limits, to be

accepted as one's  fate  or  to  be  challenged. ( taken as a

challenge).    Which  course of  action  to  take  is  the   most

crucial decision or choice that an individual makes.

One  of the most crucial choices that have to be made in a

crisis  situation   is  to  first  correctly  analyze the possible

causes,  errors   in  judgment,  earlier  choices  made  and

courses  of   action  taken  that  has  led  to  the  crisis.

" Rejection, derision, poverty, failure, the constant struggle against
one's own limitations - these are the chief events in the lives of
most artists"........Stephen Vizinczey

A crisis in short, definitely calls for examination and revaluation

of closely held beliefs. Critically, it may also call for the reversal

of overvalued beliefs, wrong choices earlier made, or for change

of course, as the current course is not likely in the direction

of one's Will or at least is a pointer for the future.

It is an excellent opportunity to bring out and make use of the

dark emotions like tension, stress, anger and irritability.

It is the only condition where one's valued and overvalued

beliefs are tested for their usefulness ( real value ). It helps

in breaking through the limitations of long held beliefs. It also

helps in showing up that beliefs also have counter-beliefs

or opposing beliefs that also can be just as true or valid.

It provides an opportunity to reorder and integrate one's structure

of beliefs and concepts.( mind )

It forces reconcepualization of learned concepts or generates

new conceptions to deal with a situation that does not fit

well with the existing concepts. But only for those who have

the inclination and gumption to do so.

( The default tendency to seek justifications to defend one's

past actions, or to pretend to be a victim, to drown in pity,

to assumed that one is fatally trapped in circumstances,

all these escape routes or easy ways out, are taboo for the

genuine self-explorer. )

A TEST OF MORAL INTEGRITY

"If a man is endowed with an ethical sense and is convinced of the sanctity
of ethical values, he is on the surest road to a conflict of duty. And although
this looks desperately like a moral catastrophe, it alone makes possible a
higher differentiation of ethics and a broadening of consciousness.
A conflict of duty forces us to examine our conscience and
thereby to discover the shadow."........Jung

Finally and most importantly, a crisis tests the integrity, especially

the MORAL integrity of a person. A crisis is a turning point for

the Moral integrity of a being, that is, the outcome of crisis then

determines the direction that the Moral integrity of the being will

take, in a downward spiral or upward spiral, depending upon

how the being handles the crisis and the crucial choices

made during the crisis.

Specifically, moral integrity is a function of both Spirit as

well as one's own developed knowledge through the

exercise of one's Will.

 

3.8.4 SELF - SYNTHESIS

"The poet knows himself only on the condition that things resound
in him, and that in him, at a single awakening, they and he come
forth together out of sleep".......Jacques Maritain

The synthesis or intuitive process is indispensable for filling in the spaces left

open or exposed by the analytic, linear operations.  It is also essential for

the balancing required after the analytic probe, when the analysis leads to

new territories, new revelations or results in an emotional or rational

 breakdown or creative breakthrough.

"I think most artists create out of despair. The very nature of
creation is not a performing glory on the outside, it's a painful,
 difficult search within".....
Louise Nevelson

Self synthesis must follow self analysis, in order to complete the cycle

of exploration, in order to retract, retrace and to reorder and revalue the

elements ( beliefs and concepts) of the structure to incorporate and

integrate the results of the exercise.

This exercise may be initiated by the synthesis process, and analysis follows

in a different kind of cycle, but in that case it is pertinent to note that the

synthesis process needs special indefinable conditions to spontaneously

initiate ( for example dreams ). There  also is the difficulty in analyzing

meaningfully, deep synthesis experiences.

The path of least resistance is the path of the loser.
H. G. Wells

THE COMPLIMENTARY COMBINATION

 

In the examination of the reality of one's own experience therefore

both these tools of analysis and synthesis are indispensable to the

process of bringing the subconscious processes under conscious

control or observation, and then to allow for the conscious to

relinquish control for the operation of the supra-conscious to

take over control when the situation demands just that.

The two processes and  their operations have to be inter - twined

to compliment and correct each other.

However it must be understood quite clearly that the linear process

being the vital process that maintains the stability and survivability

of the operating structure of one's mind, is the dominant process for

this purpose of stalking one's self. In the other process of integration

with the supra-conscious, the synthesis process has to dominate and

the linear process has to relinquish primary control.

 

After all this hard work, the next two articles are easy : its like a

simple quiz after a whole three semesters and loads of courses.

 

NEXT PAGE 19 :  3.9 Evaluate your Personal Validity

 

HOME PAGE

 

epistemology, philosophy, metaphysics, religion, belief, system, social, cultural, paradigm, knowledge,
ontology, power, moral, fundamental, force, Will, Spirit, Intent, knowing, Heart, Mind, reason, intuition,
autonomous, unique, being, existence, space, time, meaning, purpose

GrossRyder Gross Ryder grossryder G RYDER GROSS RYDER