The whole and its parts

The whole & its parts

Simple things are always the most difficult

Something is reassuring in the fact that someone like C. G. Jung confirms that simple things are the most difficult ones.

I link it with the fact, that it is easy to confuse the simple thing with the result which is sought.

In a quote, beautifully read by Alan Watts, C.G. Jung describes his view on one’s inner critic. Describing it as a kind of civil war, where the individual tries to dissolve the polarity between good and bad by pushing this polarity into a conflict.

Jung describes how establishing this polarity serves the individual to deny parts of himself, while seeking to resolve himself from having a dark side. Or let’s say, not that little detail of the dark side one can only see in the other but not in the self.

It leads to a quite natural reaction. As something the other shows cannot be recognized in the self, it generates the idea, that it is possible to help the other by changing him. The assumption that something that isn’t recognized in oneself means that it doesn’t exist, also means that it must be possible for the other to let go of it. However, for the other person, this approach to help means that he is not fully accepted.

As Jung then explains “We cannot change anything unless we accept it. Condemnation does not liberate. It oppresses.” And he continues with the idea that to be able to help a human being one must be able to accept him as he is.

Which sounds simple. But isn’t.

That’s because it can only happen by becoming able to see ourselves with everything making us who we are. Or as Jung describes it, by presenting a human quality able to show “a kind of deep respect for the facts — for the man who suffers from them and for the riddle of such a man’s life.”

It doesn’t dissolve good and bad. It allows to see them from a different perspective. To see them as inseparable. Which may explain how difficult this simple thing is.


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