Projection Vs Connection and Transference Vs Transcendence.
Joan of Arc was burned at the stake for her divine visions. Jesus was crucified for claiming to be the son of God. Mystical messages and claims of divinity are met with skepticism and often violence. Declaring Destiny can lead one to being declared demented. People want to believe, I think, but our lives our rooted in rationalism, not magical mind sets. People tend to view people with a magical mindset as being denial, delusional or psychologically projecting. I think that these magical experiences can sometimes be helpful instead of harmful and can connect us to others and help us transcend our issues.
A projection is something that is shallow. It is self-absorbed and does not relate to the larger picture. It is an empty fantasy because you see only what you want to see. You cannot get beyond your desire or needs. It is all about self-fulfillment.
A connection, on the other hand, implies that the feeling is mutual or shared. There is a closeness and intimacy. On some level, there is a shared reality. Even if that level is subconscious or superconscious. There are common interests and ideas. The two people have to have similar experiences or hold similar views. The connection may not be acknowledged or acted upon, but that does not mean there isn’t a common thread or shared feelings. Perhaps most importantly one or both parties asks, “How can I grow from this? How can I help the other person grow?”
A connection can be tender and caring without being sexual. The connection can fulfill any number of needs or roles.
All a connection comes down to is a sense of the other inside of yourself and you in them. Most people do not project themselves when they know who they are. They can recognize where they end and the other begins even if they feel close to them. You know who you are and who you are not and you know the difference between what is and what could be.
On a related note, Psychologists call projection Transference when it is between a patient or client and the psychologist. The patient transfers already present feelings onto a stranger in order to work them out. These feelings and the act of transference can be considered healthy. The idea is that these feelings need resolved and better to do it in a clinical setting than repeat patterns in real life. Counter-Transference is always a danger though. The psychologist is supposed to be detached. When become equally attached then the ability to guide and teach is compromised. The psychologist no longer has the patient’s best interest at heart because it becomes entangled in their own needs and desires. The idea of transference can be extended to other professional relationships or other acquaintances and even strangers.
But my question is….Are not all of our relationships transferred from our original one with our parents? How can we ever escape our baggage or our issues? Aren’t our relationships meant to work all of these things out? Developing the dance of intimacy does take time. Initially we respond to elements we find familiar. We respond to our impression of someone first, then we get to know them over time. The process of attraction and getting involved begins with an element of transference or perhaps an intuitive sense of who the other person is. Whether the person fits our needs or fulfills our expectations is revealed as we develop the relationship. Some people may never see the person for who they really are. Ten or twenty years can go by and they can never actually see the person they are with. Other people can see the person clearly within the first ten or twenty minutes!
The idea is not to continue transferring our old needs to new people, but to transcend our needs. Transcendence means to rise above our limits and value the spiritual over the material. When we meet someone that we connect with, then it is up to us to transcend. We should be able to resolve our issues and our karma and both grow as spiritual beings. God or destiny is implied. There is a definite purpose behind our meetings and mutual interactions. Nothing is accidental or random. Even if we can’t understand it, there is still more at stake than our own needs.
What it comes down to, for me at least, is that my feelings are not random or empty. When I feel drawn to someone I do not view it strictly in terms of what they could do for me—I long to be able to help them be better people as well. I view love as a divine gift not to be squandered. Who am I to doubt the reasoning behind it? If I feel love then it is my responsibility to express it and work for the greater good. I ask not what this person offers me, but what I could offer them. Together what can we accomplish? As a team what is it we are meant to do?
Because I have felt strong connections to people I have never met, everyone questions the validity of these feelings. But if love comes from us and radiates outward then we don’t need a relationship to feel those sacred sensations. We need only recognize that we have to learn from whomever the feelings are radiating toward. We can grow without an intimate relationship if we can experience what we need through another medium. We can recognize abstract ideas and metaphors without a direct experience of a person. Even our most intimate relationships eventually become mythologized. It is recognizing patters and altering ourselves to be the best version of ourselves possible that matters. If we do not have access to a network of friends and family then we must look elsewhere for inspiration. Books should never replace people as far as relationships go, but they can certainly stimulate us.
Books, movies and public figures are collective learning tools. They just can’t be our tests or our performances. Our personal triumphs are just that, personal. We take all of our knowledge and apply it to our relationships in order to be successful and happy. We face our challenges and emotional hurdles and it doesn’t matter where or how we learned. It just matters that we knew enough to live a good life—a happy and productive life. It takes some people years of repeating mistakes to move forward, other see the mistakes that other people make and learn what not to do. We aren’t forced into suffering in order to learn. We aren’t forced into melodramatic soap-opera lives in order to experience EVERTHING in life. Through empathy and quick recognition we can learn from whatever tools are around us. I’ve merely been resourceful in using books and TV. I am the Sydney Bristow of Emotional Espionage! I am the MacGyver of Spirituality!