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Reply To: The King Who Saved Himself From Being Saved” with Bradley Olson, Ph.D.”


Bradley, I wanted to thank you for your kind and generous response to my post and also to ask your thoughts on the current global reactions to the Ukrainian crisis since it’s already come up. Let me expand on this for a moment and attempt a connection to your topic because I saw a piece this morning on my newsfeed that I think connects the dots.

Because events regarding Ukraine are happening so fast and affecting the world’s ability to absorb them with any kind of unified assessment; I say this from a cultural point of absorption, not necessarily an emotional one. “Most” people agree this is a horrific event; but they also interpret this from different vantage points; or put another way through the prism of their own lens. In other words, they “project” their own bias and meaning in the way they see this calamity and many of these different points of view definitely conflict. Leaving the political aspect aside for the moment I think this is a good insight into reflecting how people all see things from their own window of view but have problems getting on the same page even when the visual clearly illustrates what is happening.

In your piece you use the metaphoric story of the: “King who saved themselves from being saved” as an example of how humans tend to interpret things in a certain way and take for granted this view of their reality is also shared by others when nothing could be farther from the reality they are accessing; namely that there may be something “at work under the hood” they may not be aware of that may need attention. In other words, projecting their own inner contents onto something that is out of sync with what is actually in play. (I’m doing my best not to make this convoluted so please bear with me.)

Joseph talked often about how people see a myth and concretize it, such as a religion, and should instead see it metaphorically to understand it’s references and message. But in places like the Middle East for instance you have huge differences of interpretation of mythic themes that are responsible for wars and killing people all the time because these various interpretations are not in agreement. In short, people project and we know this as a given in Jungian parlance, but in everyday human intercourse not so much and causes huge communication problems throughout much of human existence since time began. I look at someone and attempt to access if I like them or if they are friendly or not, in a sense I’m projecting my thoughts onto them in my evaluation process.

Okay, now to the piece which is a very quick read; about 2 minutes if that. And it concerns: “Media bias between Western and Eastern Journalists“. I’m curious if this article rings any kinds of bells concerning how you see what we’ve been talking about in our conversation. Again, thank you for sharing your time and thoughts with us and I hope this request does not steer us too far off course.


(A short addendum if I may. I’m asking this from “both” a Jungian/Campbell point of view and a personal perspective for this may mean putting on and taking off your analyst hat.