A lout thrashing about in clear water of wisdom will dirty those waters for everyone else.

Tom Robbins, in Jitterbug Perfume

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Carl Jung, psychiatrist and psychotherapist, identified in elaborate detail the reality of the human psyche.  In doing so he recognized the important role of myth, religion, philosophy, art and literature in culture and how each dispatches insights that are consistent with the human psyche.

In his work, he saw the root relationship between the human person and religion and the human person and culture.  Yet, in the mass communication of secular society we seem to be at odds with his achievement.

What do I mean?

We dismiss the importance of religion as if it contains no truth about the human person and plays no role in the full development of the person.

Needless to say, we are not a culture that pays particular attention to philosophy or the contribution of art and literature over the span of human history nor exhibits an understanding of their contributions to us, what they say and teach, how they inform and humanize.

Rather, we live without the lessons we have learned.

In short, we are not particularly insightful and we suffer for neglecting our understanding of human existence.

How do we suffer you might ask?

Think of all the encounters you have in a year in which you wonder how it is that a person or institution can behave as they do?  Or the arguments and discord you experience or witness that makes you think the person you have encountered is “crazy,” “sick,” “disturbed.”

Is this not evidence of how we have ignored the knowledge we have accumulated about personhood, the way to becoming a healthy and well-developed person?

Think about the public conversations we encounter.  Do they show any insight as to the human person?  Are they wise?  Informative?  Instructive?  Do they strike you as having shared a significant insight?  Created a greater understanding?

If the answer is “no,” it probably suggests we stop listening to popular culture and those who dominate its discourse, such as it is.

You see, a culture that does not teach what is known, share what is established and healthy, by default sows illness and chaos.  It works against your interest.

Discretion is the better part of valor.

William Shakespeare

Shalom.

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