FUNDAMENTALLY FLAWED: Our need for rescue, and the role of love & pride.
This short post will offer a few ideas on some deep subjects!! What I present is akin to a unified theory of human behavior, based on a fundamental flaw in our identity that sets in motion several dynamics. Why for instance, do people insist that their worldview, their decisions & opinions are completely right, that they can never be wrong; AND YET once a single mistake is admitted, that person’s entire mental house of cards collapses and they convert to being a truther exposing the conspiracy, or convert to being a hard-core Christian (or some other conversion experience)?? Why for instance, will a woman take between 2 to 60 seconds to size up a man, hold on to that lasting impression as a factual conclusion until the Honeymoon period is over, and then blame the man for no longer being the same man she fell in love with (“You changed!”) ??
Life designs us to have a need for love. (Granted some people give up on what they need (“I am not likeable”), and sometimes at that point reject humanity & become dangerous.) Still life designs us to need love. It all goes back to our perception of who or what we are, our self-identity. In the womb, our identity is that we are part of our mother: we are one with her so we don’t see a “her”, we only experience that we are one with our mom, we seem to have timelessly always existed as part of her, and from our limited perspective we know her and she (as part of us) knows us intimately. As an infant we begin with no sense of a separate identity, and as we gain that identity we also realize that we don’t really understand the person (our mom) that we thought we were. The intimacy of love sees through that veil-like gap. If really strong it is more like a bridge. And every time that we are wrong it reminds us that we are really disconnected from everything and on our own. To be more blunt ALONE. We are trapped in a body & mind separate from the rest of the world…stranded on the emotional island of our mind, with true love being our hope to escape that island, to reconnect, to be understood. Love unifies souls & transcends time.
When love connects us with our soul mate, we relive the same feelings we originally had as a new born, the sense of having always being connected, of being completed by the other person, of a fusion & melting of personalities, and of understanding and being understood. We say, “I can’t live without you.” (The same phenomena happens when we fall in love with Christ.) Our hearts will physically hurt to break up. We want a discerning soul mate who will know our inner self & comingle with us. Our soulmate’s love will save us from our isolation & separation. So we say, “Till Death do us part.” To merge we usually temporarily put our own reality on the shelf, yet the existence of differences will show itself. And when it fails, like it usually does, our heartbreak reminds us of our enduring isolation from humanity. “How could I have been so stupid?” We decide we were temporarily crazy to have fallen in love, and so terms like “madly in love” come into use. The fear of being alone helps propel people to stick with the herd and the herd’s approved solutions to life’s questions.
Every time we are wrong, on an unconscious level it reminds us how we are separate and disconnected to the universe (on our own emotional island like a Robinson Crusoe). So it is easy, in fact normal, to develop the prideful idea that we are always right. Love & pride are opposite ways to deal with our fallibility. We tell ourselves that we know ourselves better than anyone else knows us, so if we admit to ourselves that our worldview has an error, it means we are admitting fallibility, and that disturbingly makes us realize that even our own well-studied positions can be flawed. Isolated from ourselves!!! The conscious admission of an error can cause a chain reaction of change called conversion, which is the remaking of our entire self-image. Errors at one level of the mind are seen as alienation from the self, and the reminder that we are fallible and that the world can surprise us because we are isolated from it.
In reality, our self-knowledge is often shaky, incomplete & inaccurate. And the inner reality of other people is just as important to God as ours, but ours in the only one we are in touch with unless through love we merge with another person or with God’s Spirit. Without true love we resort to extrapolating about others using our own experiences. While our self-understanding is flawed, our perceptions about others (based on our own internal mechanisms) can be really flawed, & no matter how many years we are with them, we don’t gain understanding because we build on flawed foundations to begin with.
So all these things came into play in the story I listened to for 3 days solid while locked in a cell with another inmate. All of a sudden he intuitively perceived my understanding, & began telling the detailed story of his love affair with his soul mate. No matter how much they loved each other, being together always destroyed each other. She was a programmed multiple, although he had no concept of MPD (DID). I tried to explain his life as best I could, as I fought the tears back. We can love others so much, but that does not mean things will work for the best, that we are good for each other, or that we can save the relationship. The government says one can divorce if you are incompatible, which ignores the reality that most couples are incompatible—they only fused by ignoring temporarily their differences. Reality is where marriages work out their incompatibilities. How to use differences (just like using our mistakes) constructively is another topic for another day.