WHEN DISCUSSING supposed Possessions of the mind by outside entities – previous incarnations; the medium in contact with the dead – we must first decide what elements of personality are INSIDE the mind.
At first this seems simple – the ‘self’, the individual – but it’s not that clear cut.
Jung noted that we seem to share a ‘collective unconscious’. Symbols are shared through the species, including character types, or archetypes, such as the Sage, Mother, Child, Judge, Hero or Trickster. Campbell showed how such archetypes appear universally in myth, despite culture. Yet what we actually have in the archetypes are expressions of our various character types. Myths, it seems, are our minds writ large.
We can say similar for emotions. Whilst they may vary in intensity, and be expressed for personal reasons dependent upon the individual, emotions are also characteristics of the species. So what can this tell us about the individual? We can argue that, rather than being an entity in its own right, the individual is actually an amalgam of species traits.
Hence, rather than having an exact ‘self’, we all have a little piece of a communal psyche. Hence, we can not be sure what is ‘inside’ or ‘outside’ the personal mind. Rather, we are fragments of the collective. And bearing this in mind, it becomes much easier than we presently believe for a fantasized entity to temporarily reshape those fragments into another ‘personality’. But from where could the ‘information’ for such a possession come?
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