Monday, March 05, 2012


In his TWO ESSAYS ON ANALYTICAL PSYCHOLOGY, Paragraph 85, Jung talks about
personality typology.  He makes an interesting claim:  "Sensitiveness
is a sure sign of the presence of inferiority."  He is not speaking
here of emotional sensitivity or sensitivity to oneself, which can be
helpful qualities.  I believe he means the kind of reactive
maladaptation we can exhibit when we meet something that requires a
response from our least developed function (e.g., for the intuitive,
sensation; for the thinker, feeling).

Clearly, the more our four functions of adaptation to the external
world (thinking, feeling, intuition, sensation) are developed, the
more able we are to cope without becoming unduly exercised.  It
follows, then, that in those situations where we find ourselves overly
sensitive or taken over by some unconscious force that "attacks, it
fascinates and so spins us about that we are no longer masters of
ourselves and can no longer rightly distinguish between ourselves and
others," in those situations, we have the most to learn about
ourselves.  In other words, negative, unpleasant experiences can
provide profound learning experiences for us.

Reminds me of the conversation between a master and disciple:

Disciple:  How do I become wise like you?
Master:  Exercise good judgement?
Disciple:  That is no help.  How do I develop good judgement?
Master:  Good experience.
Disciple:  That is no help.  How do I have good experience?
Master:  Bad judgement.

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