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Tag Archives: Jung

I would like to apologize in advance for this post. This lecture was originally delivered to the empty air at my workplace, early in the morning before we opened, as I worked at restocking the toy department. In its original form, the lecture was a masterpiece—a gem of rhetorical brilliance which I know I will not soon match. However, the workday that followed wiped out all but the roughest memory of my eloquence, and so what remains for you now is a pale imitation of the communiqué which should rightfully have been displayed here.

But disclaimers notwithstanding:

This rant was inspired by a throwaway line in James Cameron’s Avatar, a line which I may have remembered entirely incorrectly as being: “Good science is good observation.” Whether or not any character spoke these words, they became stuck in my head, and I couldn’t get it out without a ten-foot polemic.

It started me thinking (not surprisingly) about “theory” and observation.
“Theory” is a word I throw around a lot with some of my peers and mentors. We play fast and loose with it because we have a good sense of what “theory” is supposed to be. But when it comes time to explain “theory” for the very first time, to a wide-eyed audience (be they fifteen-year-old brothers or sleep-deprived undergraduates), the best metaphor I have so far found is the Theory as Lens.

Theory is like a pair of tinted glasses—or, more accurately, like the colored lenses in those glasses. It highlights certain shades of whatever it is you look at, and makes everything look somewhat alike. That lets us compare those things across something approaching the same dimension. For example, a theory of gravity lets us compare physical interactions across the same dimension—across a single, monochromatic dimension.

Now, there are issues with this metaphor—most prominently that this metaphor entails the idea that we are using theory to look at something. Really, a theory is an image of an object. The key points of the theory correspond to key points in the reality it represents—or, to put that another way; “That the elements of the picture are combined with one another in a definite way, represents that the things are so combined with one another.”  “Theory” is a representation of reality—so instead of glasses with colored lenses, briefly imagine a Polaroid with colored lenses. Isn’t that a weird image? This is why we went with the glasses thing.

But there are also real advantages to this theory, and one of my favorite points is this: If theory is like a lens, which highlights certain features of whatever we are looking at, then it becomes intuitive that looking at the same object with the same lens gives us no new information. To gain new information, we must make a change, either internally, in the way we approach the lens, or instrumentally, in the kind of lens we use. In other words, you can only learn so much by looking through one lens. Like looking at a multi-colored picture through a mono-color lens, the world has more information than can be parsed by a single theory. To put it in a punchy philosophical one-liner: Complex phenomena require a theoretical complex.

In the effort to investigate complicated situations, we have to use multiple theoretical perspectives. Jung employed “modern” psychology, Gnostic text, and echoes of the German Romantic tradition in pursuit of a theory of the soul. James Hillman, following him, employs Jung, comparative religion, and biographic methods while seeking the same goal. The classic French sociologists integrate philosophy, sociological theory, public statistics, and historical methods to investigate the patterns of organization and interaction between humans on the individual level and above.

So a theory is like a martial art—it’s good to master one, but you become Bruce Lee if you master all of them.

Okay, that was a weird way of putting it. More accurately:

Any one theory can be an extremely powerful way of representing events in the world. Theories can accentuate the shared factors in areas which might appear vastly different to “the naked eye,” letting us examine, for example, human silence and conspiracy on the level of friend groups and on the level of entire cultures.

But a single theory can only do so much work. And so the point becomes a little teleological—which theories you deploy (and how many) depends on what you want to do. For extremely basic physics calculations, Newton’s laws are good enough to get by. For higher-level work, you might want to also include theories on wind resistance, breaking points,  aerodynamics, and even particle interactions. No one theory is going to get a rocket to the moon, and no one theoretical perspective is going to create a discipline.  So for some tasks, a single theory will get you far. But for others…you need to get a little more creative.

This is just the beginning. More on theory and disciplinary boundaries will follow.

Stay tuned for more semi-weekly rants about theory, politics, and whatever action/sci-fi movie I was watching last night!

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“On account of its somewhat unusual content, my little book requires a short preface. I beg of you, dear reader, not to overlook it.  For, in what follows, I shall speak of the venerable objects of religious belief.  Whoever talks of such matters inevitably runs the risk of being torn to pieces by the two parties who are in mortal conflict about these very things.  This conflict is due to the strange supposition that a thing is true only if it presents itself as a physical fact. Thus some people believe it to be physically true that Christ was born as the son of a virgin, while others deny this as a physical impossibility.  Everyone can see that there is no logical solution to this conflict and that one would do better not to get involved in such sterile disputes.  Both are right and both are wrong.  Yet they could easily reach agreement if only they dropped the word ‘physical.’  ‘Physical’ is not the only criterion of truth: there are also psychic truths which can neither be explained nor proved nor contested in any physical way.  If, for instance, a general belief existed that the river Rhine had at one time flowed backwards from its mouth to its source, then this belief would itself be a fact even though such an assertion, physically understood, would be deemed utterly incredible.  Beliefs of this kind are psychic facts which cannot be contested and need no proof.

Religious statements are of this type.  They refer without exception to things which cannot be established as physical facts.  If they did not do this, they would inevitably fall into the category of the natural sciences.  Taken as referring to anything physical, they make no sense whatever, and science would dismiss them as non-experienceable.  They would be mere miracles, which are sufficiently exposed to doubt as it is, and yet they could not demonstrate the reality of the spirit of meaning that underlies them, because meaning is something that always demonstrates itself and is experience on its own merits.  The spirit and meaning of Christ are present and perceptible to us even without the aid of miracles.  Miracles appeal only to the understanding of those who cannot perceive the meaning.  They are mere for the not understood reality of the spirit.  This is not to say that the living presence of the spirit is not occasionally accompanied by marvelous physical happenings. I only wish to emphasize that these happenings can neither replace nor bring about an understanding of the spirit, which is the one essential thing.

The fact that religious statements frequently conflict with the observed physical phenomena proves that in contrast to physical perception the spirit is autonomous, and that psychic experience is to a certain extent independent of physical data. The psyche is an autonomous factor, and religious statements are psychic confessions which in the last resort are based on unconscious, i.e. on transcendental, processes.  These processes are not accessible to physical perception but demonstrate their existence through the medium of human consciousness: that is to say, they are given visible forms which in their turn are subject to manifold influences from within and without.  That is why whenever we speak of religious contents we move in a world of images that point to something ineffable.  We do not know how clear or unclear these images, metaphors, and concepts are in respect to their transcendental object.  If, for instance, we say ‘God,’ we give expression to an image or verbal concept which has undergone many changes in the course of time.  We are, however, unable to say with any degree of certainty–unless it be by faith–whether these changes affect only the images and concepts, or the Unspeakable itself.  After all, we can imagine God as an eternally flowing current of vital energy that endlessly changes shape just as easily as we can imagine him as an eternally unmoved, unchangeable essence.  Our reason is sure only of one thing: that it manipulates images and ides which are dependent on human imagination and its temporal and local conditions, and which have therefore changed innumerable times in the course of their long history.  There is no doubt that there is something behind these images that transcends consciousness and operates in such a way that the statements do not vary limitlessly and chaotically, but clearly all relate to a few basic principles or archetypes.  These, like the psyche itself, or like matter, are unknowable as such.  All we can do is construct models of them which we know to be inadequate, a fact which is confirmed again and again by religious statements.”

Carl Jung, Answer to Job; Collected Works Vol 11, paras 553-555

Hello reader, and welcome to the second post in the ‘Divisions’ series, which is peeled wholesale from the pages of my academic journal.

Last time, we left off on the suggestion that myths should not be evaluated solely on their intellectual content–that is to say, on what the myth says explicitly.  The important moves of the myth are not the ones in which they talk about people riding eight-legged horses or throwing around a hammer too heavy for anyone to lift.  The important moves of the myth are hidden.

My philosophy teacher asked a question of the class.  He said “What is the difference between a legend and a myth?”  Now, I have had a slightly unconventional education, so I raised my hand and said “A myth is more sacred, where a legend is more in the realm of the profane,” to which probably a few people said “say what now?”

Let’s back up a bit.  With the aid of a gentlemen named Mircea, let’s hash out a rough idea of what I mean by “the sacred.”

The first possible definition of the sacred is that it is the opposite of the profane.” 

Helpful.  Thanks.

But in reality this is quite helpful, because we know what the profane is.  It is the ordinary, the normal, the mundane.  In recent times it has taken on a negative connotation, but put simply, what is profane is simply and literally unholy. 

So. The sacred, or the holy, is something that is not part of our daily experience. Indeed, our friend named Mircea says quite explicitly that we “become aware of the sacred because it manifests itself, shows itself, as something wholly different from the profane.” 

The passage right after that is the really fun one though;

“The modern Occidental experiences a certain uneasiness before many manifestations of the sacred.  He finds it difficult to accept the fact that, for many human beings, the sacred can be manifested in stones or trees, for example.  But…what is involved is not a veneration of the stone in itself, a cult of the tree in itself. The sacred tree, the sacred stone are not adored as stone or tree; they are worshipped precisely because they are heirophanies, because they show something that is no longer stone or tree but the sacred, the ganz andere.” 

It would probably be helpful to speak a little German at this point; ‘ganz andere’ means “all other,” or “wholly other.” It is used here to represent something that is, quite simply, outside of our ordinary experience–a feeling, emotion, or presence that we most definitely do not feel every day.

So, to recap: what is the sacred?

Have you ever stood on the edge of a cliff and looked over? Or stood at the foot of a magnificent oak tree and felt dwarfed by its presence? Does the ocean make you ponder the vastness of infinity? Do you feel a deep, all-consuming awe when you read through astronomy textbooks?  Has your heart ever pounded out of your chest as you took someone’s hand for the first time?

That,   That is the holy.  I want to stress here that this concept of the sacred is not tied to religion.  This is strictly a matter of spirituality–our experience of the spiritual.  The most vehement atheist in the world can still be reduced to tears in the face of nature’s majesty.

In contrast, our normal existence? The daily hungry/thirsty/bored/happy/sad/tired/rested cycle? That is the profane.  The normal.

Returning to our topic: what is the difference between a myth and a legend? Well, properly speaking, a legend takes place in the profane world.  King Christian X of Denmark  is the subject of legends.  He was an ordinary man who did not exhibit supernatural powers, even if he was a lovely person.  No demons came down to do battle with him.  No angels sang for him.

A myth, by contrast, is touched by the sacred.  King Christian X of Denmark is not a myth.  Cu Cuchulain is.  Cu Cuchulain was a warrior, who was quite literally touched by the sacred: he was a violent, enthusiastic fighter blessed by the old Gods.  When surrounded by his enemies, the Morrigan, the Crone, came down to rest on his shoulder, and he tied himself to a rock to keep upright and fighting till the very end.

This myth conveys a story–a man of tremendous, possibly insane bravery.  It conveys something that the old Celts valued (something that their descendants still value today): mad loyalty and a reckless enjoyment of  trouble for trouble’s own sake.   In short, it conveys a cultural value.

Ah, see? Not so difficult; eight hundred words later and we’ve arrived at this conclusion: The purpose of a myth is not to be literally true.  The purpose of a myth is to express a value, to act as a carrier for morality.

Why do we start a philosophy course with mythology? Because mythology informs and inspires philosophy.  Mythology creates the cultural world in which people operate. Especially in terms of ethics and imagination. A myth is a narrative of significance, value, divinity, cosmic importance. It carries a message. Is it true? Does it matter?  If you learn a virtue from a story–if you learn courage, integrity, honesty, loyalty from a story–does it matter if it’ s true or not?

I don’t think so.

But we aren’t done yet.   Tune in next time, and we’ll talk about our friend Mircea Eliade some more, with an exploration of the role that space plays in the sacred.

 

Hi Internet! It’s been a while. How are you? Coming along well? Good.

Since last we met, I’ve done something interesting. I’ve gone to college. WHOA.  Yeah. Exactly.

Yep, I am now a Freshperson on the proud campus of a liberal arts college, rubbing elbows with all kinds of liberal, artsy people, eating cafeteria food and getting very excited about sitting in classes for several hours per day.

Now, one of my classes has been given a book. This book is very special. It is the Essays, by Montaigne.

If you’re not familiar with Montaigne, here’s the Cliff Notes off-the-top-of-my-head version:

In, around, or near 1570, this french guy named Montaigne essentially locked himself away in a corner of his mansion somewhere near Bordeaux. He spent pretty much the rest of his life writing short, stream-of-consciousness pieces of literature on whatever the hell he felt like writing about.
He called these pieces essais, from the French word meaning to try or to attempt.  Yes, that’s right, Montaigne invented the essay.

Put the pitchforks down. 

Chill the **** out.

Montaigne didn’t invent the boring essay.  He wrote about everything that came into his head–and, seeing as he was a learned Renaissance man, that was quite an expansive subject.  He wrote about thought, about sensations and feelings and perceptions, and while his countrymen were off killing each other quite violently he pioneered the field of subjective literature.  If you haven’t read his Essays, you really should.

No, seriously.

http://oregonstate.edu/instruct/phl302/texts/montaigne/m-essays_contents.html

There they are.  Read a few.  Or read them all, if you have a week or so.

WHEN YOU’VE DONE WITH THAT:

So here’s what’s up.

I like Montaigne.

I like what he did.

And his writing had a dramatic effect on his mind.  He became more perceptive, better able to focus, more sensitive, and developed a preternatural gift for translating thought and emotion into language.   He was able to stay in the moment–to simply be where he was, something that even the most advanced of Zen students sometimes struggle for.

This is not unfamiliar to me.

In fact (YOU KNEW IT WAS COMING) it reminds me of Jung.

In 1914, Jung began to experience bizarre visions.  Disturbing dreams.  A cloud of cosmic ice descended and froze all the land, killing every living thing, a dream he experienced in April, May, and June of that year.  In the final appearance of the dream, a leafless tree remained after the frost, laden with berries, and Jung provided these grapes to a waiting crowd.

August 1, and the first World War broke out. Jung took it as his mission to document these dreams and provide the record to the world–but he wrote down not only his fantasies.  He wrote down images, thoughts, emotions, everything that came into his head, in a sweeping, grandiose style that grated on his sensibilities and yet flowed from his unconscious.

And when Jung opened himself up to the gates of his thought, his soul responded.  He, too, came to learn/develop/experience this mysterious wonder of being wholly absorbed in the moment, able to see people as they are without judgement or clouded thought–the philosopher’s gift.

I’ve been inspired by this, I’ll admit.  Montaigne has joined my long list of people over whom I am effusive in praising, sitting in my personal hall of fame along with Jung, Jacques Cousteau, Alexandre Dumas, John Hodgeman, H.P. Lovecraft, Shakira, and many more.

So.

I’m restarting.

Consider this a re-beginning of the blog. A reimagining, if you will.  Because here is what I will do. Every day, at 4:30 Central American time, I will sit down at my gleaming, sexy Toshiba laptop, turn on the instrumental music (Bach’s Toccata And Fugue in D Minor, Beethoven’s Moonlight Sonata, selections from Two Steps From Hell, various Irish folk songs), and write.

I have a timer. It’s bright red, and it’s set for 35 minutes.
Each day, I will sit down, roll up my sleeves, hit ‘play,’ and whap that START/STOP button. And I will write for 35 minutes. About anything. About everything.  Probably at least once about nothing at all.

When I’ve done writing this, I will then put an emphatic period, sign it with –TOR, and hit “Publish.”

I will not edit it.  I will not consider. I will not permit myself to alter anything other than the sentence I am typing at any given moment. You will be direct recipients of my stream of thought.  Within a few days I will have no more readers.  These two are not unrelated.

I also will no longer be able to guarantee the parental safety of a blog post. Because, frankly, what’s in my head is not always pretty.   But I will do my best to keep obscenity at bay because, frankly, I don’t like it.  I’ve never liked profanity.  It just strikes me as boring.  It serves exactly one purpose: to make me feel better when I stub my toe.

In fact, from this point on I will be doing my utmost to avoid the use of any obscenity at all, aside from perhaps ‘crap,’ ‘shit,’ and ‘ass,’ because, frankly, if you don’t know those words, you shouldn’t be on the internet.  Go ask mommy what they mean.  Also keep an eye out for ‘bugger,’ ‘nifty,’ and our special triple-points word of the month, ‘pretentious.’

I’ve been called pretentious before.  My immediate response is amusement and pleasure.  However, after some consideration I have to take issue with this.

How, exactly, am I pretentious? I don’t ‘pretend’ to be anything.  I may be flamboyant, enthusiastic, and downright nerdy, but really, I strive to be myself.  There really is no one else I’d rather be, except perhaps for a gentleman from Gallifrey.  But that’s true for a lot of people.  And that’s why I have a trenchcoat.

Perhaps it’s sarcasm.  I use so much of it, I can see how it would be hard to separate the bullshit from the truth upon an initial meeting. But rest assured, if I tell you that I am the coolest person ever, it’s meant to be intensely sarcastic.  In point of fact, I do not believe I am the best person ever.  That award has not yet been given, but I am pretty sure it will go to Bono.

Speaking of Irish music, I just went on an Itunes binge. You know, when you get a gift card and suddenly buy everything you’ve ever wanted? Well, I went out and I bought a whole bunch of Irish folk rock.  Which, I’ve decided, is my favorite genre. Ever.

…I think I want to form an Irish folk rock band, or at least a rock band with a fiddle player/violist.

That would be easy, because I’ve met a lot of violists since I got to college. You can’t throw a rock without hitting one here. And then they’ll get all huffy and go on about how they deserve special treatment just because they have their own clef.

That’s the fifteenth time I’ve used that joke since August 22nd, and it’s probably still funny to someone. Not to me, though. It’ll be taking a break for a while.

Which reminds me: How am I supposed to respond when someone says they like my glasses? I mean, my glasses are cool, I’ll agree, but I hardly know how to segue a conversation out of that.  If I’m really lucky the other person will be wearing glasses too. Then I can say where I got mine and ask them how they got theirs, and BAM, conversation! If not, I’ll just have to make some witty comment and make the first conversational move.

It’s not my favorite thing, starting a conversation. BUT EVERYONE IS SO GODDAM SHY AROUND HERE.

I’m not sure if they’re shy or polite, in retrospect.

But seriously. GAHHHHHH

I’ve been spending hours at the dining hall.  A la Spain, I go to dinner, grab some food, sit with someone, and talk and eat for a while.  They leave, I get more food, and I repeat the process. In this way, when dinner ends, I’ve been talking nonstop for about an hour and a half, two hours if I’m lucky, arguing, joking, and just generally enjoying a conversation.

I’ve been conversation-starved for years. Orange County really is a social wasteland. I can’t believe I even survived there, and I pray for my family back home.

19 seconds left.

Um.

I’d like to thank the Academy?
Or Montaigne?
MORE TOMORROW CAPS LOCK FOR SPEED

Hey there internet,

Let’s talk about psychology again! YAY! And blend it with a bit of philosophy and optimism! WOOO!

SO.

Who here knows what an anima figure is?

Okay, now read the link.

Now, for everyone who went “OMG TL;DR,” here’s the condensed version.

Within every person there are archetypes. These are image-entities that embody some deep psychological tendency.   No one person’s archetype will be exactly identical to another, yet as the name suggests, there are many similarities.

Every woman counts among these archetypes an animus, an embodiment of all that is masculine inside that woman’s own psyche.  The feminine is expressed in her personal being, and thus the animus takes the form of an outside entity.

Every man expresses the masculine within their personal being. Thus, they (we?) instead have an anima. An embodiment of all that is feminine within our psyche.

The anima/animus can take a number of shapes and appearances. In an unbalanced soul, it might appear dark or all-consuming–thus we have the “Bluebeard” story or the myth of the succubus.

In a perfectly centered emotional state, the anima figure appears as a human, of the opposite gender.

We tend to be attracted to soulmates with the same characteristics as our anima. Thus, for example, we have Cary Grant and Audrey Hepburn in Bringing Up Baby. The intellectual attracted to his opposite, the emotional, and vice versa.

These figures appear in dreams or visions.

Usually, these dreams are vivid, haunting, and hold some clue to your further psychic development.  Also characteristic of them is a feeling of loss. As if you’ve actually met someone, and you miss them when the dream ends.

/enter philosophy.

What do you think, internet people?

This whole concept of separate entities within the unconscious is so awesomely cool for me.  I’m not just ME, some random teenage kid with no idea what he’s going to do.

I am the uppermost entity of a legion of powers, all working together to achieve some purpose that the conscious mind has not yet realized.  The people around me are similarly multitudes, each one with different entities riding at the forefront of their psyche.

IMHO, that’s what they mean when they say “When you put your mind to it, you can accomplish anything.”

They mean that if you are in harmony with yourself, and if you have aligned yourself with your personal archetypes, no power in the verse can stop you.

Yes, that was a Firefly quote.  So what.

Until next time, internet.

The vampire.

Mostly associated with three things at the time of this post: either Buffy, Mila Jovovich, or Twilight. The vampire has certainly changed from its older roots—something has happened since the writing of the classic Dracula.

What happened? Was it prohibitive makeup costs?

Or was it something  more far-reaching—a cultural revolution?

DUN DUN DUNNNNN.

In this blog post, I’ll take a look at the history of vampires, and throw in some Jungian psychology to sorta spice it up a little bit.

The vampire legend has its first origins in civilizations as old as Rome and Greece, where demons and spirits with vampire characteristics popped up in legends and folk tales.

But the first true vampires come from western Europe.

There, in the 18th century, folklore tells of vampires as bloated, distended corpses,  rising from the grave to drink blood–often wearing only the tattered remains of their funeral shroud.

Afterward, they would return to the coffin, leaking blood out of their mouth and nose.

Artist’s Impression.

Vampirism could be caused by witches, suicide, infected wounds, a bad temper, demons, evil spirits, or letting an animal walk or jump over the corpse before it was buried.

Killing a vampire could be accomplished in myriad ways—essentially, removing a major organ or essential section of the body or taking any household object and inserting it into or near a vampire would have a deleterious effect on said non-living entity.

The transformation of the vampire myth from ‘bloated gibbering corpse’ into ‘handsome and perfectly coherent semi-dead person’ started, perhaps, with an 1829 book written by Dr. John Polidori entitled, wait for it… The Vampire.

This book, partly intended as an insulting portrayal of Lord Byron, was instantly welcomed by the public, and the aristocratic, charming vampire arrived on the scene. A second tale, Carmilla, tied the vampire irrevocably to forbidden aspects of human emotion (nudge nudge, wink wink, say no more).

Only 25 years later, in 1897, the vampire climbed to one of the greatest heights of horror literature in Brahm Stoker’s Dracula. Inspired by a particularly brutal prince of Wallachia, Stoker rewrote the vampire into a cunning, brilliant, seductive, and psychotic character, taking all the personality of The Vampire and the twisted seduction of Carmilla into one individual, Count Dracula.

As 1900 came rolling around, the notion of the vampire took off, dissolving into countless novels particularly in the age of cinema and television. After countless re-imaginings and dozens of historical tweaks, the vampire finally came to rest where it is today—simultaneously ghoul, vague personification of upper class fear, symbol of the dangers of reckless hedonism, and the ultimate incarnation of the teenage “bad boy” fantasy.

Yes, vampirism has morphed in an interesting way over the last three centuries, from a disgusting thing to be feared to a thing to be idolized or even something you’d want to date.

Oh, and the chupacabra.

Pictured: The essence of suave charm.

So how is this relevant? In what conceivable context could vampires be linked to anything at all useful in modern society?

Can’t guess?

Well, that’s what I’m here for.

Through the wonderful world of Jungian psychology.

Carl Jung, psychologist? OR VAMPIRE HUNTER?

The aforementioned world of Jungian psychology is a fascinating one, specifically in its approach to legends and mythology.

Carl Jung saw patterns in mythology, recurring characters and ideas, which lead him to present the concept of the ‘archetype.’

‘Jungian’ archetypes vary in their scope and impact, but clearly something in the vampire myth resonates very definitely in the human mind.

In the first place, vampires are connected very closely—through every culture—to two things: religion and blood.

Perhaps, if we wanted to chase the issue of archetypes in religion, we might argue that these tie back to the same thing, but my fingers are getting tired and so I will ignore that subject for the moment.

Vampires have always been parasitic, draining creatures—consuming blood, flesh, (and sometimes other, less pleasant things) in order to prolong their existence or right some wrong.

They have been associated with damnation in many ways, sometimes going so far as to be demons themselves, or even corpses directly possessed by the devil.

Another interesting point (to me) is the fact that the modern vampire is a very quiet creature.  S/He is calm, collected, and intelligent, slowly and gently sucking the life out of his victims by repeated visits.

.In the ‘truer’ modern retellings of vampire tales, the largest amount of pain is usually visited upon the vampire, with guns, knives, stakes, crosses, fire, and all manner of other barbaric, generally bladed objects.

The vampire’s victim does not necessarily suffer, nor do they even always realize that they are the victim.

(If we look at it this way, Twilight becomes the horrific tale of a young woman who is all too terribly blind to the emotional damage wreaked upon her by a cruel vampire)

In this way, the vampire as it stands now bears an interesting resemblance to addiction, which any online subscription medical paper can tell you is one of the major problems of our time: addiction to drugs, to alcohol, to gambling, to the internet, to World of Warcraft.

Perhaps the vampire’s evolution from barbaric, disgusting monster (in the 1700s, when war was still a common thing and violent death by sword was much more common and even expected in some cases) to life-draining seducer (through the age of rapidly multiplying addictive things and increasing fear of the aristocracy) is not an accident of public opinion, but rather the product of the evolving human subconscious.

The next step in the evolution of the human psyche.

Gooooood morning internet!

Well, I’ve been doing this for a while now, and as I approach my fifth post I feel I should write something more introspective.

As a result, today I’ll be explaining the name of my blog, blow-by-blow. It will be very exciting. Hold onto your hats!

Jung:

This refers to the psychologist Carl Jung, who is generally awesome and founded his own school of psychology back before it was easy to found a school of psychology.  His focus was not on curing a mental ‘disease’ but on finding the reason behind it.  Just as awesomely, he was not a closed-minded doctor–Jung was very open to alternative treatments and the possibilities of unexplained psychological phenomena.  He may even have caused a few.

Psychology can be ugly reading, but two of my favorite books in any field are ‘C.G. Jung Speaking’ and Jung’s own autobiography, ‘Memories, Dreams, Reflections.”

Wilde:

Who could this be other than Oscar Wilde? The most awesome gay Irish playwright of all time?  I was fortunate enough to be able to read his complete works, and I’ve seen both versions of The Importance of Being Earnest (hint: the older one is better; but that’s a different post).  Oscar Wilde is one of my heroes insofar as writing is concerned.  He’s like H.P. Lovecraft except he can also write comedy, and is Irish, and wasn’t terminally ill.

And:

This is a conjunction, used in the language ‘English’ to connect two words together.  It is also an acronym for ‘Also, Normally Dinosaurs’.  Because dinosaurs do usually appear in my blog.

Free:

The country ‘America’ or the “‘United’ States” is known as the “Land of the Free,” and thus I am using this to signify my current location in the world.

.Wordpress:

These are the people who provide me with a web page for my blog. Thank you people! 😀

.com

This is part of the website. Duh.

There you have it–a basic explanation of the reasoning behind my blog name. If you didn’t care, then thanks for reading this far anyway. Give yourself a cookie.

–Me