Psalm 44, Live In Relationship To the Unconscious

Verse 3: “It was not our fathers’ swords that won them the land, nor their arm that gave them the victory, but thy right hand and thy arm, and the light of thy presence; such was thy favor to them.”

One of my favorite quotes from Carl Jung is “By building a conscious relationship to the unconscious, we can mitigate the negative effects of the unconscious.” His statement echoes the sentiment of the psalmist. The Mystery or Divine Essence known as God, or expressed as the unconscious aspect of psyche (Greek for soul), is the source of victory in our endeavors.

We live in an era that promotes ego consciousness and control. We are told that if we affirm the right things, visualize what we want, and ignore the negatives and fears, we’ll have success. Another camp says, just do it! Somehow, brute will and force is supposed to bring what is desired.

Although these positions contain kernels of truth, they leave out the reality that we are a living, non-static, spontaneous, evolving, constantly manifesting Divine Spirit in a body. The psalmist and Jung remind us that relating to the Inner Divine Spirit, theologically as God or symbolically through the unconscious, is the key to transmuting the negative of our personalities and lives.

The unconscious is by definition that which is unknown. In Jung’s model of psyche, the collective unconscious is everything we inherit because we were born human. Instincts, innate knowing, and the energetic intelligences symbolized by the chakras are expressions of the collective unconscious.

From the collective unconscious, we also are connected to the numinous (or spirit) energies known as archetypes. Archetypes are universal templates common to humanity in the feelings, behaviors, and perceptions that accompany them. For instance, worldwide, the archetypes of mother or inferiority or victim or trickster or magician or king evoke similar feeling-toned images and responses.

The archetypes and instincts express as affects (feeling states) that take shape in patterns of behavior and response known as complexes. The complexes are the psychic structures that make up the personal unconscious, which is the aspect of the unconscious where automatic, learned responses emerge. It is the home of those expressions where we realize we are acting like our mother or father! Internalized ideals based on the outside world form here.

To live in relationship to the unconscious is to open to the Divine as it expresses in our personality. Our feeling-toned responses and patterns of behavior with our self and others provide an opportunity to connect with the archetypal or numinous energies behind the responses or patterns.

When we connect to the affect or feeling, we begin a relationship to the Divine Spirit as it is appearing. The relationship between ego/self and the Self/God Within includes acknowledging, listening and hearing, dialoguing, working with, and moving in concert with one another. This ongoing process begins by relating to our feeling states of consciousness.

Strengthening the connection between our conscious self or ego and the unconscious or Inner Divine Spirit is the foundation for victory. Victory on the Kabbalistic Tree of Life refers to the emanation of God that expresses in our intellect.

The rightful place of the intellect is to give form or image to the desires of our heart and soul. Images and thoughts disconnected from our heart and soul are problematic; those that express the desires of our Inner Divine Spirit bring victory in our endeavors.

Inner Reflection
Take a few minutes to consider your relationship to the Mystery. How do you honor the ongoing, fluid interfacing of your ego/self and Self/God Within throughout the day? How is your intellect serving your heart’s desires? What and where are you seeking? Invite an increased dialogue and exchange with your Self/God Within as you consider the next steps to take.