by Paul Levy
George W. Bush is ill.
He has a psycho-spiritual dis-ease of
the soul, a sickness that is endemic to our culture and symptomatic
of the times in which we live. It is an illness that has been with
us since time immemorial. Because it is an illness in the soul of
all of humanity, it pervades the field and is in all of us in
potential at any moment, which makes it especially hard to diagnose.
Because of the way the personality self-organizes an outer display of coherence around a pathogenic core, I would like to name Bush's illness "Malignant Egophrenia" (as compared to schizophrenia), or "ME disease," for short.
If ME disease goes unrecognized and is not
contained, it can be very destructive, particularly if the person
afflicted is in a position of power.
We can view Bush - and his entire administration: Cheney, Rumsfeld, Rice, etc., as well as the corporate, military industrial complex they are co-dependently enmeshed with, the media they control, the voters supporting them, and ourselves as well - as interconnected parts of a whole system, or a "field."
Instead of relating to any part of this field as an isolated entity, it’s important to contemplate the entire interdependent field as the "medium" through which malignant egophrenia manifests and propagates itself.
ME disease is a field phenomenon and needs to be contemplated as such.
Bush's sickness is our own.
Being non-local, this disease pervades and underlies
the entire field and can therefore manifest anywhere, through
anyone, and at any moment. The disease's non-local nature makes the
question of who has the disease irrelevant, as we all have it in
potential. It is more a question of whether or not we are aware of
our susceptibility to fall prey to the disease. This awareness
itself serves as an immunization protecting us from the pernicious
effects of the illness, thereby allowing us to be of genuine help to
A non-local, reciprocally co-arising
and interdependent field of unconscious denial and cover-up
constellates around Bush to enable and protect his pathology. People
who support Bush are actually complicit with and enabling Bush’s
madness in a co-dependent, self-reinforcing feedback loop that is
"closed," which is to say it is insular and not open to any feedback
from the "real" world.
All of Bush’s supporters mutually
reinforce each others’ unconscious resistance to such a degree that
a collective, interdependent field of impenetrability is
collectively conjured up by them that literally resists
This is why Jung says,
What happened in Germany was a
collective psychosis, and this is what is taking place in our
country right now.
The way Bush is fighting terrorism is in actuality the very act
invoking and creating more of it in the first place. Bush is
so dissociated from the darkness within himself that he
splits off from it, projects it outside of himself, and then tries
to destroy it. He is fighting against his own shadow, a battle that
can never be won. Bush’s inner process, because of the position of
power he finds himself in, is being dreamed up and played out on the
To quote noted psychologist Rollo May, the daemonic is,
The daemonic aspect of the disease can develop an autonomy of its own and literally possess the person or group, as it is self-generating, self-perpetuating and self-organizing in nature, like a closed and negative feedback loop.
The person who is taken over doesn't suspect a thing, as the field secretly conspires, colludes with, and enables their psychosis. For example, Bush, in his delusion, imagines he is divinely guided.
His supporters want to believe this to
feed their own adolescent fantasies of wanting to have a divinely
inspired leader take care of and protect them. Because of this need,
they invest in Bush’s delusion, which just confirms to Bush all the
more that he is indeed God’s instrument. Bush and his
followers are co-dependently and reciprocally feeding and supporting
each others’ unconscious narcissistic needs in a truly pathological
and ultimately self-destructive co-dependent relationship.
By projecting the shadow like this, they locate the evil "outside of themselves," which ensures that they don't have to recognize the evil within themselves. Ironically, by fighting against their own shadow in this way, they become possessed by the very thing they are trying to destroy, thereby perpetuating a never-ending cycle of violence.
Jung comments on this very situation:
Projecting the shadow is an activity that relates to lying, both to oneself and others.
It’s interesting to note that one of the inner meanings of the word Devil is "the liar." Projecting the shadow, according to Jung, "…deprives us of the capacity to deal with evil." [vii] Jung stresses the importance of consciously developing what he calls our "imagination for evil," [viii] which is to consciously recognize our potential for evil. This recognition means embracing and integrating our dark side into our wholeness, which is made up of both light and dark.
If we have no imagination for evil, to quote Jung,
By projecting the shadow, Bush unwittingly becomes a conduit for the deepest, archetypal evil to possess him from behind, beneath his conscious awareness, and to act itself out through him. At the same time, ironically enough, he identifies with the light and imagines that he is divinely inspired.
To quote Jung, a person in a position of power who has become dissociated like Bush,
He then believes that any action he
desires is justified in the name of God, rationalizing it as
being God's will. Unable to self-reflect, he is convinced of
the rightness of his viewpoint, which he considers non-negotiable.
Being inflated due to an unconscious identification with an archetype is, in essence, an expression of having forfeited one's humanity, a state in which humility becomes impossible.
Having the most powerful man in the
world be unconsciously identified with and inflated by an archetype
is a very dangerous situation for everyone involved, which is all of
To quote Senate minority leader Harry Reid,
Bush’s unrestrained lust for power is like an alcoholic’s compulsive thirsting for and being controlled by alcohol.
Bush is like the typical substance abuser, only in his case, the substance he is abusing is power, and the family system that is the recipient of his abuse is the entire world. We need to not be naïve and realize the danger of our situation: People addicted to power as Bush is will literally stop at nothing to retain their power, no matter how vile the means.
To quote Karl
Rove, the administration is willing to do "whatever it takes" to
stay in power.
A person who has fallen into this perverse state has, because of their interminable arrogance, literally hypnotized themselves and become their own victim, totally losing their internal freedom in the process.
People in this state
of utter depravity, such as Hitler, Stalin, Hussein and George Bush,
are truly possessed by an overwhelming lust for power that compels
them to perpetrate endless violence on others. They believe that
there is no higher authority - pronouncements to the contrary - and
hence, feel they can literally get away with murder.
At the same time, these seemingly "external" darker forces are an expression of something deep within himself that he has become a stranger to. Unless recognized, this pathological situation always results in self-destruction.
To quote Jung,
The indigenous author Jack Forbes, author of Columbus and other Cannibals, describes those who are suffering from this malady as being infected with a literal illness, a virulent and contagious disease he calls wetiko, or "cannibal sickness." Those so afflicted consume, so to speak, the lives of others - human and nonhuman alike - for private purpose or profit, and do so without giving back anything of their own lives. They simply exploit others, be it people or the environment, as objects to satisfy their own unending narcissistic hunger. Like a vampire, they feed off of other peoples’ blood.
William James described it well,
"Evil is a disease."
unable to feel any remorse and experience his own weakness and
vulnerability, his own sense of failure. This is too great a threat
to his narcissism. Another way of describing Bush’s psychic numbness
is to say that he cannot, under any circumstances, allow himself to
As the Buddhist Maharatnakuta Sutra says,
Commenting on this resistance to self-reflection and endless cycle of self-deception, Jung says,
Malignant egophrenia is the embodiment of the separate self, the narcissistic ego, spinning out of control to an extremely pathological degree - hence the name "ME disease." If we want to understand the malignant aspects of egophrenia gone berserk, all we have to do is to contemplate the actions of George Bush.
Being the incarnation of this disease,
he is its revelation in human form.
Bush’s unconscious, dis-association from
himself manifests as a compulsive, "involuntary one-sidedness" that
results in primitive, uncivilized and truly Neanderthal behavior.
Because of Bush’s position of power, he expresses his inflexibility
in the most brutal of ways.
Jung tells us that:
Jung reiterates the point by saying,
In addition, Jung makes the point that pathological liars are in the habit of:
Monk and author Thomas Merton, commenting on the case of the obviously demented Nazi war criminal, Adolf Eichmann, points out,
A key feature of malignant egophrenia
is that it is very hard to recognize when someone is a carrier,
because the person can seem so normal and even endearing. The person
afflicted can be very "charming" and have a charisma that can
entrance those who don't see through their subterfuge.
Both Hitler and Bush dreamed of and are exponents of a "new order," which is one of the reasons people fall for them.
Like Hitler, Bush is acting out on the world stage an under-developed psychological process that deals simplistically with issues such as good and evil.
It’s as if he hasn't grown out of and fully differentiated from the realm of mythic, archetypal fantasy that is typical of early adolescence. This immature aspect of Bush's process speaks to and resonates with those voters who support him, as it is a reflection of their own under-developed inner process.
The most dangerous leaders are those who are adept at acting out our forbidden impulses, urges we would never allow ourselves to consciously give voice to in our individual lives. We vicariously experience these hidden desires through our unconscious identification with both the leader and the group for which he is the "conductor."
There is a safety, a comfort, a
familiarity in being accepted and embraced by the prevailing mass
psychology of the collective. There is a secret attraction to be on
the side that seems "right," to be on the side with power, to be on
what is perceived as the winning side. The cost is high, however, as
we lose both our sanity and our "Self" in the process.
Supporting Bush is a sign that a person
not only doesn't see the deadly illness that is incarnating itself
through Bush, but is an expression that this disease has taken up
residence in their being and is using them to do its bidding.
Malignant egophrenia is crazy-making. It induces a very hard to recognize form of insanity. When we fall prey to egophrenia, we are unable to recognize that we are taken over, as we become bewitched by our own projections, accusing other people of doing what we ourselves are doing.
For example, Bush is guilty of the very thing he accuses Saddam Hussein of when he calls Hussein,
Similarly, Bush is talking about himself when, referring to the terrorists, he says we are,
He is unknowingly giving voice, shape and
form to his unconscious shadow.
Because egophrenia hooks us through our
unconscious, when we are infected with it, just like a sociopath, we
don’t experience ourselves as being sick or needing help. When we
are taken over by egophrenia, we always see the problem as existing
in someone else.
In this slip of the tongue, Bush was unknowingly giving voice to the unconscious shadow, the part of himself whose intentions are the polar opposite of what he consciously imagines and represents them to be at that moment.
Bush’s shadow was speaking through him,
revealing what was being acted out through his unconscious. Bush had
become transparent, blowing his own cover in the process. Egophrenia
is a form of psychic blindness in which we have become so
unconscious that we literally project out our own blindness and
imagine that others, instead of ourselves, are the ones who are not
Collective psychosis is like that.
By not recognizing the nature of the disease, the mental health community becomes its unwitting agents, helping the disease to propagate.
What clearer sign do we need of a
collective psychosis than when our mental health system itself,
whose job it is to monitor such phenomenon, not only doesn't
recognize that there is a collective psychosis running rampant in
our society, but are themselves infected with it?
This is based on an illusion, for the
individual is embedded in the greater field - family system, society,
and planetary culture - and is an expression of this multi-textured
field. The individual and the field around them interpenetrate and
condition each other so fully that they can't even be regarded as
two separate aspects that have become joined together, but rather
must be seen as inseparable parts of a greater whole.
When we recognize our interdependence, however, we
concurrently get into focus and see the deeper, unified field
expressing itself through us and connecting us with each other. It
is like instead of contemplating one finger on a glove, we can
recognize the hand moving the finger in relation to the other
fingers, which are recognized to not be separate from each other.
Instead of studying the individual fingers, we can focus our
attention on the underlying hand animating and in-forming them.
But to concretize Bush in this way would be analogous to
only seeing the circle that a three-dimensional sphere makes as it
passes through a two-dimensional plane. The circle is a lower-level
reflection of a higher-dimensional entity (the sphere), just as Bush
being a sociopathic criminal is a lower-level expression of a deeper
and more pervasive process non-locally expressing itself throughout
the interconnected field.
By recognizing the nature of this collective
psychosis, we snap out of being part of it. Malignant egophrenia,
unrecognized and misdiagnosed until now, has wreaked havoc all
throughout human history, and is at the very root of our current
world crisis. To the extent we are unaware of the nature of this
collective psychosis, it has us in its grips and will unconsciously
be acted out through us in a destructive manner. The choice is truly
Like a sci-fi movie, we have dreamed up
a higher-dimensional Frankenstein monster that has taken on a life
of its own and truly threatens us all.
Like a true
Manchurian candidate, Bush is being
manipulated, used and victimized, like a puppet on a string, by a
deeper matrix of cover-up and deceit that has been perpetrated by
him and his very regime - and has now taken on an autonomous life of
The disease is archetypal in nature,
which is to say that it has eternally re-created itself and played
itself out over the course of history. We can even say that it’s the
"bug" in the system that has in-formed and given shape to all of the
conflict and disharmony of human relationships. ME disease is as old
as the human species. However, we’re now at the point in our
evolution where we can finally recognize it, see it, give it a name,
and diagnose it.
We are only able to know it as it reveals itself to us, by
contemplating its multi-dimensional expressions. Just like we
approach an overwhelming abuse or trauma by studying its symptoms,
we come to know egophrenia by contemplating its reflections.
Jung warned that a difficult task lay ahead of us after the mass insanity of the Second World War. He pointed out that after the "demons" abandoned the German people, these negative energies weren't banished.
Jung elaborated by saying,
Projecting the shadow
literally opens the door for malignant egophrenia to take up
residence in our being.
It causes him to reject water, for example, so that the virus cannot be spit out of the mouth. This is analogous to how Bush supporters reject the facts, which if considered, would cause them to snap out of their spell.
The rabies virus ultimately controls and enslaves its victims, taking away their creativity and mental freedom, as it forces them compulsively, like a vampire, to further the propagation of the virus. Autonomous complexes work in exactly the same way; they can warp and destroy the whole psyche of the person (or nation) so afflicted, infecting the surrounding field in the process.
Journalist Jacques Julliard of "Le Nouvel Observateur" recently has recognized this state of affairs when he simply states, "America has rabies." Once the virus has eaten up and consumed its host, it leaves him for dead and moves on to its next victim. Etymologically, the word rabies is related to the word "Lucifer."
These autonomous complexes can't stand
to be seen, however, in much the same way a vampire can't stand the
light. Malignant egophrenia will shape-shift and do everything in
its power to resist being seen. It’s elusive, mercurial, and very
much a trickster. The disease obfuscates itself, creating any number
of distractions to hide behind, and will even react violently to
being seen, for being seen takes away its omnipotence and autonomy.
The importance of seeing the nature of the disease we are dealing with cannot be overstated. Jung goes on to say,
When we see a demon, we know its name.
Naming it is exorcistic, as it dis-spells the demon's power over us.
To name something is to symbolize it. The word "symbolic," which
means that which unites, is the antidote and antonym to the word
"diabolic," which means that which divides and separates.
Bush claimed to be "a uniter, not a divider." However, he has only
united one thing - the majority of the world against us. To see this
diabolical aspect of what is coming through Bush, namely, that he is
an instrument creating separation, is to be seeing with symbolic
The energy bound up in the compulsion to
endlessly re-create the disease becomes liberated and available for
creative expression. The prescription for this disease is simply for
enough of us who see it to connect with each other in lucid
awareness so that it can be contained, metabolized, and healed. We
can put our collective realization together and dream a much more
grace-filled universe into incarnation. This is an evolutionary
impulse from the universe in which we are invited to participate.
Hidden in the daemonic is our guiding spirit and genie (as in "I dream of…"). This is our true genius and inner voice. This is why Jung called the daemonic the "not yet made real creative." The fact that such a dark shadow is emerging in our world is an expression that light is nearby, as shadows are themselves an expression of light. Demons are actually blessings in drag.
Lucifer is truly the bringer of light.
Symbolically encoded in egophrenia's literal manifestation is the key to its re-solution.
Symbols are the language of dreams. A symbol brings together and
reconciles two contraries into a greater whole. A symbol
concurrently reflects and effects a change in and of consciousness
itself. A symbol is both the expression of, as well as the doorway
into a more transcendent, higher-dimensional part of ourselves.
Seeing symbolically doesn't negate the literal dimension but instead complements and completes it, as both are true simultaneously. The literal and symbolic dimensions of reality interpenetrate each other so fully that they can't be seen as two separate things joined together, but rather are interdependent parts of a greater whole.
The birth of symbolic
awareness not only more fully completes our picture of the nature of
the universe we live in, but gives us access to the way to actually
deal with this deadly disease.
To mythopoetically re-imagine the
prevailing myths of our culture, which have become rigidified,
imprisoning and suffocating, is to creatively give birth to the
universe as an ongoing work of art. We are the creative artists
through which the revelation of the universe as art becomes
manifested. All that is needed for malignant egophrenia to reveal
its blessing is for us to recognize its revelatory function.
Malignant egophrenia is a modern day plague of Egypt.
If we don't see what it is symbolically revealing
to us, malignant egophrenia will destroy us. It's a gesture from the
universe, beckoning us, demanding we integrate it and thereby
receive its blessing. By prompting, pressuring and challenging us to
come to terms with it and receive its gifts, malignant egophrenia
has the potential to awaken us, thereby furthering the evolution of
This is to say that when a dark, demonic power is dreamed up into fully materialized form, such as is happening in our world right now, this is an expression that this particular energy is in the process of potentially becoming integrated into the wholeness of our being.
manifestation is the medium through which this process of
transformation takes place. This physical universe is the dimension
in which the energy bound up in the infinitely regressing feedback
loop of the disease is dreamed up, accessed, and transmuted. The
agency which accomplishes this process of assimilation is
Egophrenia is our consciousness materializing
into form so as to expand and evolve itself. The disease is the
conduit through which consciousness grows into greater orders of
freedom. In the disease, consciousness is revealing itself to
itself, which is to say that the disease is an unfolding revelation.
cure for egophrenia is the very expansion of consciousness which it
necessitates and demands. Encoded into the disease is its own cure.
This is to have the realization that we are interconnected and not
separate from one another, that we are parts of and contained in a
greater being. We wouldn’t be able to have this expansion of
consciousness without egophrenia, which means that egophrenia is a
"potential" blessing in a very convincing disguise that it's not.
We have all dreamed each other up to play out these archetypal roles, in full living color, so that we can see and start to integrate these parts of ourselves. Embracing these parts of ourselves that we see so clearly reflected in Bush and Co. is the first step towards healing our situation, because it dispels the polarization and separation that are the root factors preventing reconciliation. Bush and Co. are playing out roles existing deep inside the collective psyche of all of humanity.
If Bush and Co. weren’t around, there
would be someone else sent by "central casting" to pick up and play
out these very same archetypal roles. Compassion spontaneously
arises when we truly recognize these fear-ridden parts of ourselves.
If we don't look at what’s happening, if we turn away, ignore it, and contract against it, we are lying to ourselves. Then we’re colluding with and unknowingly feeding the disease. Our looking away is a form of blindness. Our looking away is a form of ignorance. Our looking away, our contraction, IS itself the disease. Our resulting complacency and inaction is, in fact, an expression of our lack of compassion.
Reverend Martin Luther King Jr. said,
There is a great danger when we see evil, though.
We cannot bear witness to evil and remain unaffected - something inside of us becomes ignited when we experience evil. Malignant egophrenia forces upon us the responsibility to come to terms with the evil inside our own hearts. If we solidify Bush as being evil and react with righteous indignation, we are guilty of the very same thing we’re accusing Bush of, i.e., projecting the shadow.
We then become a conduit for the very
evil we’re reacting to. Who among us has not been guilty of being a
channel for ME disease at one time or another? Who among us has not
been guilty of falling asleep and unwittingly acting out our
unconscious? Unlike Bush, most people simply incarnate the disease
locally, within the domain of their sphere of influence, which is
usually their family system.
However, this very arrogance leaves us open to falling prey to the virus.
We may think,
However, to have these
attitudes is to fall under the seductive spell of the bug, causing
us to disconnect from and give away our power. In this way, we
forsake one of our greatest spiritual treasures, the act of
demands us to be willing to consciously step into our power,
mediated through the heart, and to find the courage to speak our
true voice: The malignant egophrenia epidemic has induced a form of
criminal insanity in the entire Bush regime that we are all
complicit in by allowing it to happen.
Abraham Lincoln said,
Now is the time to join together and creatively express our true voice. As the Reverend Martin Luther King Jr. said,
Malignant egophrenia is a true "reconciling symbol," in that it unites the opposites.
Malignant egophrenia is both a deadly disease and the highest blessing co-joined in one phenomenon. Is it a wave or a particle? It is a true "coincidentia oppositorum," a conjunction of opposites, an expression of divinity.
The question is,
The choice is truly ours.
All that is needed is for enough of us to recognize what is being revealed, and to creatively act from this realization.
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