August 17, 2022: a date which will be long remembered. . . .
High school marks a new phase in individuals’ maturation in many ways. One is progress toward development and expansion of gifts and talents. Because that’s the business end of lives, our being, our selves: what we are to do with who we are. How we are to make ourselves useful. Because ours and others’ happiness and wellbeing rely on us to make use of ourselves through the expression and application of our talents. Through performance.
There will be many distractions, but this is our true course toward living lives of accomplishment, meaning, fulfillment, and happiness: making use of ourselves through our talents. There may also be a good deal of waste, because we typically have too many potential talents and uses to develop in one life. We must make a choice.
August 17, our debut at high school, will mark the first serious phase in choosing which of our talents to work and play with. To learn and grow with. For an adolescent girl of character, ambition, and conscience, what will it be? Creativity through artistry and the performing arts? Excellence through competitive sports? Character development through leadership? Healing and intimacy through relationships? Innovation through discovery?
How do we engage with an expanding world that’s engaging with us?
Relationships with others continue in high school as before, but with a subtle difference. High school is adolescence that breaks with childhood, a period when individuals shed a skin that kept them insulated within a protective enclosure. A bubble of unawareness that served as an extension of the mother’s womb. To shield vulnerable and unformed selves from potentially hostile and harmful influences outside the womb.
Adolescence exposes individuals to some of these influences. Releases them from their sheltered world and expands it. Makes them aware for the first time that they share something larger: an expanding world composed of many worlds. Not just a place but a Force. Way larger than themselves and their immediate environment, the only environment that a child knows. They must now choose how to adapt to it. How to relate to it, engage with it. How to replace the protection afforded by the womb, to protect their vulnerability in new ways. Because their parents’ protection, for better or worse, is giving way to this Force. And we’re not just engaging with it. It’s engaging with us.
The most important choice is choice
High-schoolers must confront the need to make choices for themselves. And the very first and most important choice is choice itself: whether they prefer to choose freely, with independent judgment, or avoid it. Duck the responsibility -- pass it off to someone or something else. The most important choice is whether to run toward the functions of mind that enable Free Will or to run away from them.
With the onset of adolescence, humanity in high school begins to divide itself into two basic personality types: those who embrace the independent judgment of Free Will and those who reject it in favor of something else. Something with a seductive yet sinister appeal: will that isn’t free. Judgment that’s made for them, ready-made and easy.
The Way of the Master: Vince Lombardi
The Force of nature that accounts for humanity and its environment also accounts for its division into two opposing interpretations of where it originates. One interpretation assumes that it originates with a source that’s benevolent. That’s conscious, self-aware, and alive with thoughts, feelings, soulfulness, and creativity. That wills humanity to choose its way forward freely and happily, with guidance and support from this Force but not its intrusion or dominance.
The other interpretation assumes that this Force originates from a source that exhibits none of these attributes. It’s mindless, loveless, and soulless. It has no “self” to be aware of. It’s simply a will, or “fate,” that one either sides with and survives or doesn’t side with and gets run over. That one can either join and benefit from its derived power or oppose and wind up powerless, with no resources and no prospects.
If the supremacy of “fate” so decrees, one can be a “winner.” If it doesn’t, one becomes a “loser.” The stark choice offered by the second interpretation is dominate or be dominated. Not just in sports but in every relationship: see only a contest of wills and win the contest. At any cost, especially understanding, reality, and truth. Winning isn’t everything. It’s the only thing.
The fans of George III never left us
But regression to savagery, whether the noble savage of Rousseau or the ignoble savage of Hobbes, can’t be obvious in civilized society. Aside from politics where anything goes, the appearance of civility must be maintained. The cult of animal instinct must be clothed in “sociability” without compromising its not-so sociable reality.
Our shared environment – “civilization” --requires getting along in peace and harmony, with some semblance of mindfulness and thoughtfulness, affect and empathy, and independent judgment. Beyond semblance, the second interpretation’s lust for dominance wants nothing to do with a shared environment. Its will is to dispense with it altogether.
Understanding personality types is critical to self-awareness
These are radically different interpretations, and the adolescents who commit to one or the other do well to understand their consequences. Do well to understand that personality types that identify with mind and its intuition and those that identify with body and its senses account for the difference.
Self-awareness is essential. And it begins with the first indications in adolescence which of these directions personalities are taking. Mind that feels through Intuition a Force within that’s Mind – will that’s relatable, conscious, and benevolent? Or body that detects through senses an external Force of nature – will or “fate” that’s neither relatable, conscious, nor benevolent? One a sentient Being, subject, the other an insentient object. One with the attributes of Being, the other a senseless beast.
The difference in the psychology of personality is between individuals who prefer to rely on mind-intuition to interpret their reality – the way things are, the way the Will of Force has made them, wants them – and those drawn to the body for interpretation. One “sees” (understands) its environment as originating from Force that’s subject-self, like itself. The other “sees” (understands) its environment as originating from Force that’s object-self, like itself. The difference is critical for the individual, critical for everyone.
Mindless “action:” the will that sets the rules through animal instinct
What would account for these two possibilities? A source of Force with attributes of consciousness – creativity that’s alive with purpose -- and source with attributes of unconsciousness – creativity that’s random happenstance, undirected “fate.”
The answer is Mind that can exist in two states: one conscious, the other unconscious. The second state asleep and possibly dreaming.
If the Force of nature that manifests our world could be an instrument of Mind, of Will that’s either awake or asleep, it could manifest the attributes of one or the other. Mind-centered personalities, guided by the vision of Logic, intuit source-Mind that’s awake, alive and benevolent.
Body-centered personalities, dependent on physical senses for interpretation, are grafted onto the only environment they can detect: our physical environment. Their preference for sensing over intuition leaves them with no awareness of the existence of Being or anything else beyond their physical environment. With no awareness of Mind or Will in another Reality, awake or asleep. Without the vision of Logic, they don’t “see” the source that mind-centered interpretations see because they can’t.
What they “feel” with their senses is only its Force exerted on their immediate environment, the effect of sensed experience with no sense of cause or the attributes of cause. What they infer from its effect is their own entrapment in unconsciousness: dumb will that makes the rules, that sets the terms of engagement not through conscious choice or Free Will, not through affect or values that distinguish between right and wrong, but through dumb animal instinct.
Through mindless action defined as the dominance of Force. Through behavior that bypasses reflection, deliberation, sensitivity, loving kindness, judgment, and discipline. That finesses conscience and frees its subjects to engage with their world without moral responsibility or accountability. With only the cloak of “civility,” the cover of “sociability,” the blanket of “pleasantness” to keep them in line. Substitutes for an inner moral compass. The proverbial wolf dressed in sheep’s clothing.
Context: the Force of unconscious Mind, capable of dreaming
Both interpretations are correct within their separate contexts. The question isn’t which interpretation is correct, but which context is correct. A question that only Logic, accessible through Intuition, can answer. Because objectivity requires another perspective, and bodies’ senses grafted onto our material world cannot provide it. Another Reality can only be “seen” and understood through the vision of Logic.
If it’s assumed that our material world is the only possible reality, then Force that originates with unthinking-unfeeling object, rather than thinking-feeling subject, is exactly how the body-centered interpretation “sees” it: mindless, loveless, and soulless. A Force-will and nothing more. That we either ally with to survive or not ally with and take our chances.
If we assume that our material world is not the only possible reality, that another Reality preceded it, somehow caused it, and parallels it, then Force must originate not with the effect of this other Reality – our world – but with its cause. “Cause” not necessarily “create,” “design,” or “intend,” if the dream of an unconscious mind can't be Real. Only cause, for now, that belongs to another dimension, another Reality.
If this other Reality is cause, then it cannot share the attributes of a temporal, material universe. And if it has the capacity to express itself in effects – to Create in the Now – it must do so through the Logic of Mind in combination with Love. It must do so through the agency of Force in service to Logic and the Laws of Cause and Effect. In service to Necessity -- conditions beyond the capacity of anything temporal and physical. Mind Conscious or unconscious, but, either way, capable of self-awareness, thought, feeling, judgment, and creative imagination in its Conscious state. Capable also of dreaming an illusion in its unconscious state. Dreaming an imagined unreality within the broader context of Reality. Within this context, mind-centered personality’s interpretation of Force with a benevolent source must be correct.
It all depends on psychology expressed through the individual’s personality type: whether the individual’s Psyche, or Soul, connects with the Memory of Mind conscious in Reality, accessible through Intuition, or remains captive to an imagined “fate” through mind unconscious and its dream of bodies and unreality. It all depends on how the individual summons awareness of one or another source of Force-will and attempts to engage with it: through intuition's vision of Logic or the unconsciousness of body.
Will change of mind come in time?
Is personality type a given or a preference? Preordained or not? Can an individual choose?
What must certainly correct choice of the wrong context is its consequences, and nothing is more certain than that the choice between these opposing interpretations will have consequences. Immediate and concrete. And these are already evident in the world and in lives that share it.
Only one of their opposing contexts can be correct, and Logic says the one that insists on the “reality” of unreality, a dream, on opposing “realities,” on a logical impossibility, cannot be correct. Then personality types who witness and personally experience the impacts of contradiction, of insanity, might realize their mistake. Might engineer a mind-change, a course correction, that cuts our losses.
If it’s not too late. The incorrect interpretation – our alliance with blind animal dominance, “the dark side of the Force” -- is already condemning every species on the planet to extinction. The stakes couldn’t be higher. The atrocity of warfare perpetrated by humanity in the twentieth century would have killed us off if nature had lent a hand. If we want to kill ourselves off, the twenty-first century is our chance, because nature is lending us a hand. Through climate change that may already be beyond reversal.
To Reality with Mind and Love. To hell with dominance!
What is the ultimate source of the “Force of Nature” and how should adolescents adapt to it? How should we all adapt to it? We can align with benevolent Logic within to Create in lawful Order, disciplined Freedom, Sensitivity, Peace, and Harmony. Or we can feed off a beast without to satiate lust for power. To indulge savage impulses to destroy in lawless disorder, undisciplined license, cruelty, conflict, and dominance.
Is the choice not clear?