Thought Patterns on a Societal & Individual level

in #philosophy4 years ago (edited)

"Every situation that enables us to become more spiritually open is made harder for us by countless forces. Many of such forces are of Intra-psychical character. The less courageous seekers can get dissuaded by encountering the evil archetypal forces, the fear of death or the wraith of madness. In Middle Ages, free thinkers risked being judged, tortured or executed by the Inkvizition.
Accusations of witchery, torture and execution by burning are nowadays replaced by psychiatric 'stickers' and drastic medical procedures. The materialistic science of the 20th century laughs upon all spiritual efforts, labelling them as pathological, no matter how justifiable or substantial they truly are."

Stanislav Grof - Cosmic Game

This quote is from a book called Cosmic Game from Stanislav Grof. The whole book is an authors attempt to capture and summarise philosophical and spiritual insights from his 40 years long personal and professional journey, in which he pursuits the goal of mapping out the so far unexplored corners of the human psyche. Stanislav Grof is a fascinating guy who managed to add priceless knowledge into what we so far know as "Holotropic states".

The book is no less fascinating and I am looking forward to sharing more insights about how I understand it with all of you dear readers.

Grow or Suffer - The obstacle is the way

If you read my last post "Grow or Suffer" (, you will understand the things I'm going to write about here more. For me personally, these topics seem quite interconnected.

Anyways, the quote I mentioned at the beginning reminds me once again of the seemingly ever-present principle about human growth. In order to grow, you have to solve problems and overcome obstacles.

This principle functions and is observable in our daily lives as individuals, but also in a society as a whole.

As individuals, we must overcome problems of Intra psychical character. In our journey towards more functional, wise and overall ripened mind, we must conquer countless obstacles, which Stanislav Grof mentions as "the evil archetypal forces, the fear of death or the wraith of madness". Even if you do not these as "archetypal forces", this idea stems from and into even completely ordinary things, like managing our daily emotions and our view of the world around us.

As a society, we must decide how to deal with certain types of thoughts, which manifest themselves as movements, religions, ideologies etc. If you think about the whole human society as an interconnected matrix of thoughts, the principle remains the same on whole society level as in our individual psyches. There is a thought pattern that occurs and transfers into more nodes and there you have it, a whole group of like-minded people goes on to change the world. Like a thought that eventually modifies the rest of your life.

What thought patterns of our society are the right ones and what are the destructive ones? Different people have different ideas, I guess we shall see which prevail and which perish. Eventually, there are only two paths, which manifest themselves in the same way on an individual as well as societal level.

Nevertheless, I am remaining optimistic about this whole situation.

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