I know I’m not alone in feeling frustrated that the pandemic persists, fretting about what I can do about the divide in our society, and fearing for my country as the anniversary of the January 6th attack on our nation’s Capitol approaches, with many defending that action or downplaying it. One of my primary values is truth, so misinformation that can result in deaths and additional climate disasters makes me nuts. However, I know that judging others is an escape from my own responsibilities. From Jung, I learned to withdraw projections; from the teachings of Jesus, to “judge not”; and from my mom, not to judge without walking in someone else’s shoes for a month, a concept that I believe came from Native American tradition. I know that it is healthier to focus my attention on how to be a more positive influence in the world.
Utilizing archetypal theory also helps me. My Realist archetype tells me that the best solution to the continuing pandemic and political gridlock is to surrender to the reality of both and do what I can to protect myself and others from harm. I’m more of a thinker (Sage) than a political organizer, so I’m hoping that my upcoming blogs will provide an archetypal analysis of our American situation that can help people with complementary strengths take action that will influence politics, government policy, and everyday interpersonal relationships.
Four blogs about the U.S. will be featured on my website over the winter. Their focus on archetypes can make differences feel less polarizing if it gets a reader out of us vs. them Warrior fighting. Rather, they will train their attention on the universal psychological patterns driving our behaviors instead of how bad the “other side” is. I also know that our minds have the power to make more evolved decisions and to live the archetypal stories in more conscious and caring ways.
From my good friend Judy Brown, I’ve learned that however bad things look, it is wise to stay curious about what good is coming out of a period of turmoil. I’m heartened by how much, in spite of all the current crises, our government is getting done. I’m also cheered by the “great resignation” and the resulting higher wages in traditionally low wage jobs, and by how much innovation is happening in the private, nonprofit, and public sectors to address our country’s real problems. In addition, I’m inspired by the evolution of consciousness in progress in emerging spiritual movements within very traditional religions, and by the increased willingness of many to widen their circle of care by supporting kindness in government policies.
Finally, I’m encouraged by how many people, myself included, have used this time to ask what authentically calls to us to be and do in the coming year. For me, this feels like a reminder to “think globally and act locally,” and to put greater energy into developing the psycho-spiritual aspects of my work, concerns that now beckon. My wish for you is that you pursue your own sense of calling this year and that we all bury the hatchet and come together for the greater good.
Free Monthly Opportunity
You are invited to join me in the Science of Mind Magazine Group, which will meet the second Monday of every month at 7:00 p.m. on Zoom, beginning January 10th, 2022. This group, which I will be leading, is offered by the Columbia Center for Spiritual Living. It will give us a chance to explore the implications and applications to our lives of the belief that the divine is not only the creator of the cosmos, but also is embodied in the whole of creation and in every one of us. Reading the Science of Mind Magazine as a primary source regularly is recommended, but not required. The magazine contains articles and short guidance for each day. Insights from it will provide a focus for our discussions. As some of you may know, in addition to my Ph.D., in 2012 I completed an interfaith Doctor of Ministry degree in Creation Spirituality (CS), which shares with Science of Mind the fundamental premise stated above, with some differences in emphasis.
In the group’s meetings, we can discuss our questions, expand our thinking, and apply what we are learning to living fully and joyfully. We also can augment the primary focus on Science of Mind cutting-edge thinking with what we know from other sources and from our own lives. To register for the group, go here. To subscribe to the Science of Mind Magazine, which does require a modest subscription fee, go here.
Myth, Mysticism, and Story Course
Along with Carol Burbank, I will be offering a three-part course on “Myth, Mysticism, and Story” from 7:00 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. on March 15th, 22nd, and 29th, 2022. In the course, we will examine how the Science of Mind Principles and the Pearson 12-Archetype System together support our authentic giving of our gifts to the world. The course is sponsored by the Columbia Center for Spiritual Living and will be given on Zoom. The tuition is $60, plus any love offering you wish to make.
Over the three sessions, we will consider how the 12 archetypal/mythic characters and stories are present in universal narratives we hear, think and live. We will consider the qualities and plotlines most authentic to each of us, and how each of us can develop our spiritual gifts. In the process, we will identify ways to evolve our stories in the service of living more abundantly as we contribute to creating a world that works for everyone.
Carol Burbank, Ph.D., is a coach and columnist for the Science of Mind Magazine. For information on how to register, email info@Columbiacsl.com.
Discover the Archetypal Stories Living You
I’m delighted to announce that I will be returning to the Jung Center of Houston (either remotely or in person) this coming May to offer a lecture and workshop based on ideas from my new book, What Stories Are You Living? Discover Your Archetypes – Transform Your Life, and the companion Pearson-Marr Archetype Indicator (PMAI). The lecture will be held on Friday, March 4th, from 6:00 to 8:00 p.m., and the workshop will be held the following day, Saturday, March 5th, from 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. The registration charge for the lecture, which carries two continuing education credits, is $20 for Jung Center members and $25 for nonmembers. The charge for the workshop, which carries five continuing education credits, is $100 for Jung Center members and $110 for nonmembers.
The lecture and workshop will introduce 12 archetypes that assist with human development and evolution and will help attendees develop strategies to recognize, and then influence, the expressions of archetypes active in their dreams, fantasies, and behaviors—including those that might peek out from the shadow from time to time. For those who have taken the PMAI or are doing their own archetypal self-assessment, the class offers the opportunity to gain feedback and deeper insight in relation to questions about their own active archetypes.
Information on registration for the lecture and workshop will be posted on my Events page as it becomes available.
Mepkin Abby Lecture and Retreat
I am looking forward to offering a lecture and retreat at the Mepkin Abby St. Francis Retreat Center, located in Cooper River, South Carolina, north of Charleston, this spring, on May 20th-23rd, 2022. Participants will be able to join onsite or by Zoom (or by Zoom only, depending on safety considerations at that time). The lecture and workshop will explore how the archetypes in the Pearson 12-Archetype System promote spiritual gifts, with reference to the gospels and insights emerging from contemporary Christian theology and historical discoveries.
Details, including fees, will be forthcoming. I share this now so that those interested can join the waiting list. To do so, email email@example.com. Further information on registration for the lecture and retreat will be posted on my Events page as it becomes available and will be included in my Spring newsletter.
In the Blogosphere
Over the past three months, I’ve published three blogs on my blogsite that I believe you will find interesting and provocative, and that may be applicable to your own life.
This December, I wrote and posted a blog entitled “Clarifying Your Vision for 2022? 12 Archetypes That Aid Human Evolution and Yours.” In it, I argue that it is more useful to create “intentions” for the next year rather than making resolutions, which often posit extraordinary changes in behavior that typically are abandoned early on. I discuss how the 12 archetypes in the Pearson 12-Archetype System can be helpful in identifying the stories you are living, which in turn can allow you to shift your behavior or goals in a positive direction. I then outline four steps that can help you prepare for the challenges of the coming year:
In November, Dr. Edward M. Smink took on a timely topic in this pandemic era in his guest blog, “Rock Bottom Is Not the End: The Wisdom of Compassion Fatigue.” Dr. Smink relates his own experience of compassion fatigue and the steps he took to overcome it. With the help of an analyst, he “broke through the cultural taboos that prevented me from developing self-care skills and compassion resilience.” He also used an archetypal framework to understand the stories he had been telling himself that contributed to his compassion fatigue. His “intention in sharing this story is to give hope to those who don’t trust their interior resources due to fear of judgment and cultural taboos.”
In her guest blog “The Dracula Syndrome: How Our Fear Keeps Archetypes (and Our Potential) in the Shadows,” posted earlier in December, my friend and colleague Carol Burbank observes that “in polarized times, unconscious moral certainty is the hunger that drives leaders mad, and weakens us all by feeding our fears.” Dracula is a myth, not an archetype, she argues, but rather is “a shadow manifestation of archetypal patterns” that recently “has reared its ugly, irresistible head.” She goes on to explain how an understanding of these archetypal patterns can “help us wake up from the trance of myth and ground our choices in real-world human challenges.”
I welcome and encourage your comments on any of the blogs posted on my blogsite, several of which have inspired a rich exchange of ideas. Also, if you have an idea for a blog that you might like to submit, please send me an email with a brief summary and I will let you know whether it is suitable for my blogsite and, if so, what guidelines you should follow in preparing it.
In addition to my blogsite, you can find many of my blogs on those of Psychology Today and the Depth Psychology Alliance, and you are invited to make comments on the former and on the latter if you are a member. The easiest way to learn when a new blog goes up on my blogsite or any of the others on which I post is to follow me on Facebook at Carol S. Pearson, PhD and Twitter @carolspearson. Posts and tweets will inform you of the topic and how to access it. I also invite you to follow me on Instagram at carolspearsonphd. Just click on one of the buttons at the top to connect, and let me know what is going on with you.
As always, please feel free to forward this newsletter to others who might be interested.
Carol S. Pearson
I know I’m not alone in feeling frustrated that the pandemic persists, fretting about what I can do about the divide in our society...
It is wise to clarify intents for a new year, yet resolutions often don’t work. Learn why.
In polarized times, unconscious moral certainty is the hunger that drives leaders mad,and weakens us all by feeding our fears.