An amazing teaching I’ve been receiving on this subject is Marc Bregman’s class Carl and Me: Teachings on The Red Book. Every Thursday we gather to discover the story of Jung’s journey to his soul that this book recounts (by the way, this class is available via video conference and is free at www.northofeden.com).
The surprising and wonderful thing about Jung’s story is that he is not afraid to reveal himself as the fool and even the outright asshole (this image is his, from this book). God comes to him and he resists, he refuses, he complains, he gets up on his high horse . . . and the best thing about it is that he admits it! As the story unfolds, he gets broken down, he opens up, he ultimately receives the love God keeps trying to bring to him in snake and storm and girl and boy.
The biggest part of Jung’s journey is also the biggest part of mine—admitting it all. This thing that takes over my body and acts through me when I am not my soul-child self is butt-ugly.
Here’s a recent dream I had: A pill I have taken is lodged inside me creating an obstruction at my heart. Then it comes out of me—a capsule bloated to the size of a large marble that is rock hard. I break it open and inside are two teeth and some blood.
At the beginning of doing this work, my dreams showed me the pathology that lives in me by showing me acting it out in my life. In my dreams I ran around controlling everything, I screamed at my husband, I gave myself away to others. This dream, though, reveals what that really looks like—a rock-hard obstruction at my heart, a false pregnancy masquerading as a human, just teeth and blood in a hard shell.
Why call a spade a spade? Because of the incredible release I feel when I turn to the man in long hair and eye makeup in another dream and am taken into his arms. Do I think He doesn’t know I have had this terrible obstruction at my heart? Do I think He doesn’t know that I am so often an asshole?
It’s exhausting keeping up the charade of being good—of holding in my anger and leaking it out in passive-aggressive ways, of pretending I’m not controlling when I am absolutely throttling the situation and everyone involved (If I hear myself say “It’s OK, I don’t need to…” one more time, I’ll scream!).
I’m an asshole. So what? What’s wrong with being a jerk when I am loved anyway? I want to fly the Flag of Flaws, admit my shortcomings, apologize once I really feel the pain of my transgressions, and keep turning and turning to the love that never ends (thanks, Carl).