As increasingly unconscious Americans create suffering on the political battlefield some tend to think that they are less deplorable than others. What is the basis for this thinking and behavior? Whatever happened to equality and justice for all? Whatever happened to that sense of community that had us feeling that we are all in this together?
In the last presidential election (2016) some candidates (we won’t name names) seemed to look down their connoisseur-shaped noses at some segments (we won’t say who) of the American electorate and to even label them “deplorables.” Needless to say the said labeled segment took umbrage at this slight. This feeling of pique caused some of these voters to feel that these strutting cognoscenti would not make good representatives for their interests in Washington. Who knew? Certainly not the democrats!
When we find other people “deplorable” they are mirrors. We are seeing images of aspects of ourselves that we find unacceptable and have repressed into our unconscious, into our “shadow.” “We see the shadow most indirectly in distasteful traits and actions of other people, out there where it is safer to observe it. We project by attributing this quality to the other person in an unconscious effort to banish it from ourselves, to keep ourselves from seeing it within. When we react intensely to a quality in an individual or group—such as laziness or stupidity, sensuality, or spirituality—and our reaction overtakes us with great loathing or admiration, this may be our own shadow showing.” (1)
Few of us will like to admit that name-calling is a kind of self-labeling. For a more detailed look at our deplorable behaviors click on the link below.
Insight # 126: Life’s but a walking shadow…it is a tale told by an idiot, full of sound and fury, signifying nothing. Shakespeare in Macbeth
- “The Shadow,” in this blog and also in the print version The ABC’s of Simple Reality: The Encyclopedia of Self-Transformation, Vol II (2018), by Roy Charles Henry, pages 216-235.
- Zweig, Connie and Jeremiah Abrams. Meeting the Shadow: The Hidden Power of the Dark Side of Human Nature. Jeremy P. Tarcher, Inc., 1991, page xvii.