The Journey Toward Authentic Humanity
We believe that an authentic humanity is energetically held together through the Law of Love. When this Law is fully active, all of creation is interconnected, operating in integrity, and experiencing peace, harmony, and understanding in all of its activities. The members of an authentic humanity are able to give and receive unconditional love, even in challenging situations involving intractable conflicts. Individuals, couples, families, large organizations, communities and cultures, and nation-states to evolve. This is the underlying principle of LOVEvolution.
We identified several factors that impact humanity’s evolutionary journey towards authenticity. We did this by integrating psychological principle with mythic themes. This opened up the world of archetypes—innate, universal prototypes that hold large concepts or ideas. Even scientists aren’t sure how old the human race actually is. Some say our strain of humans has been around for about six million years, while others suggest that the modern form of humans have been on this planet for only 200,000 years. Recorded history is much shorter, with Sumerian Cuneiform Script and Egyptian Hieroglyphics, being only 5,000 years old. However, the oldest form of coherent writing dates back only to possibly 30,000 years.
Archetypes and their Impact on Humanity’s Evolution
Psychologist Carl Jung (1968) used archetypes as a tool for understanding both individual and collective evolution. In Jung’s view, archetypes are much older than written language, as they grew out of primordial images that painted in caves or carved on rocks. For example, cave paintings in Lascaux, France are estimated to 35,000 years old, and the small Venus of Willendorf statue is reported to be 28,000 years old.
Jung referred to the groups of memories, experiences, and interpretations that are associated with an archetype as a complex. In Jungian psychology, people with mother complexes are interacting with the mother archetype. He conceptualized archetypes as a vast psychic pool of energized symbols, images, and experiences that humanity shares as a whole. Archetypal reality is a collection of symbolic figures that represent mother, father, trickster, shadow, child, victim, persecutor, and rescuer, that humans are unconsciously connected with.
Like his teacher, Sigmund Freud, Jung believed in the power of the unconscious mind. However, Jung also identified a deeper layer of consciousness that he called the collective unconscious, conceptualizing it as a reservoir of the experiences of our species.
Myths often contain archetypal images that are drawn from the oral histories of ancient cultures that used them as a way of describing cosmic events or events that happened long ago in human history. Joseph Campbell collected myths and fairy tales passed down orally from generation to generation for more than 25,000 years. He found that ancient cultures used them as a curriculum for teaching the general public how to transform their consciousness. He found that the main difference between a myth and a fairy tale is that myths involved humans interacting with God-like entities. Fairy tales, on the other hand, were stories that involved humans interacting with other humans. Fairy tales generally involve interactions with three different types of human entities: the witch, the giant and the dwarf.
The wisdom keepers of these ancient traditions who told these mythic stories and fairy tales were able to pass on the keys to transform of people’s consciousness. Their goal was to advance the evolution of those who understood the symbolic meaning of these stories. Many of these stories were eventually written down and then performed as theater in order to teach the masses.
Jung believed that the gods of mythology were not human beings, but representations of the mental states, moods, and emotions that all humans feel, share, and experience as part of the human condition. Because mythic knowledge is symbolic and thus more like genetic, cell, or soul memory, it is usually stored in the unconscious rather than the conscious mind. Archetypes and myths offer both individuals and groups opportunities to explore and make conscious their collective impulses and to express them creatively rather than harmfully. Jung believed that the subtle interactions between archetypes and myths helped stir unconscious psychological urges and impulses that drive both individual and collective evolution (Edinger, 1980). Interestingly, brain research shows that most of our childhood memories are stored in the brain as images and symbols. These mythic stories were actually reaching deep into the psychic memories of those who heard them.
We believe that one of the most critical things that can accelerate the social and psychological evolution of the human race is if people heal their developmental traumas that anchor the Drama Triangle dynamic and its archetypal roles of Victim, Rescuer, and Persecutor. These are mostly imbedded developmentally in the incomplete essential developmental processes of the counter-dependent stage of development. Mostly, what we are learning from our archetypes is that they reflect our stuckness as a human race in the counter-dependent stage of development.
As we developed the Partnership Way, we discovered that developmental traumas and Drama Triangle dynamics are passed intergenerationally through not only family-of-origin experiences, but also through myths and cultural archetypes. We also saw how they operate as the predominant organizing mechanisms in all human social systems. Parents and other adults who do not recognize the hidden effects that their developmental traumas have on their beliefs, values, feelings, and behaviors, and who have not healed these traumas, cannot help their children break free of this mythic mess.
In order for human evolution to move forward, a critical mass of parents and other adults must complete their own psychological birth process and complete the essential developmental processes and intractable conflicts of the counter-dependent stage of development. If enough people complete of the essential developmental processes of the counter-dependent stage and the heal their developmental traumas they can create a critical mass of individuals who are able to communicate in healthy ways. The archetypes of the victim, persecutor, and rescuer will no longer prevail and will be replaced by the archetypes of the divine child, the divine couple, the nurturing partner, the peaceful warrior, and the compassionate healer. This is clearly a step up from the archetypes that drive our behavior in our world today.
How Does Mythology Affect the Evolution of Humanity?
One of the missing mythic pieces in the evolution of the human race is that we are limited in our understanding of our own history as a human race, and that our view generally only considers recent, recorded history. That is, our perspective on human evolution is still very shortsighted. When we add mythological information from prehistory (the era prior to recorded history) to our study of human history, a much bigger picture of human development emerges. When we include prehistorical and mythological information about the developmental history of humans, it brings a new perspective about our current global problems such as youth and family violence, intractable global conflicts, and a lack of environmental sustainability.
We see them as symptoms of developmental or evolutionary stuck ness. Our written history goes back to approximately 2500 B.C.E. and tells the history of the patrifocal period of human history that emphasizes masculine values. During this era, humans first developed agriculture, domesticated animals, established nation-states, and created technology for industrialization.
Although much of what happened during prehistory (prior to about 2500 B.C.E.) is not in written form, historians have been able to use archeological evidence to piece together a fairly accurate picture of life during this era. Even then, we do not have much information about how humans lived in the 190,000 years earlier than even our prehistorical evidence.
The archeological and mythic evidence we do have, predating recorded history, contains the story of a matrifocal period of human history that emphasized feminine values. People lived in tribes as hunters and gatherers and there were few wars or other large-group conflicts. For example, there was a period of more than 1,500 years (3000 to 1500 B.C.E.) when the Minoan culture on Crete flourished in peace. Many of the family and social practices emphasized feminine or partnership values.
The evidence suggests that it was destroyed by a massive volcanic eruption on the nearby island of Santorini. Even earlier, from 7000 to 3500 B.C.E., archeological evidence shows that small settlements in parts of Asia Minor practiced equal gender relations and peaceful relations with their neighboring settlements, according to Riane Eisler. When these two periods are combined, they give us a more complete story of our human evolution. In other words, his-story + her-story = our-story.
By combining all the available evidence on human history, it is possible to identify the parallels between human evolution and the development of the individual. The same fractals can be seen even at this level. Using Developmental Systems Theory, I hypothesize that the prehistorical or matrifocal period of human history parallels the codependent stage of individual development. In addition, we propose that the more recent patrifocal period of human development parallels the counter-dependent stage of human development, and our contemporary history brings us to the edge of the independent stage of human development. The next stage of human evolution could bring us into the independent stage, and the movement of the whole human race eventually into the interdependent stage of development.
The human race lags behind in its evolution and seems relatively stuck. Although technology has allowed us to become more interdependent, we still lack the ability to use technology to evolve our consciousness to that level. This contributes to the pressing problems of global climate change and other environmental crises where some of our technological advances threaten our very existence as a species on this planet. I believe we must get beyond the competitive counter-dependent structures that we have built and that are now blocking our evolution. Perhaps the environmental crisis will provide us with an opportunity to see the folly of our ways and take steps to heal our collective developmental traumas that lurk behind our intractable conflicts, wars, ethnic and cultural clashes, and environmental damage.
War making is draining off our valuable social, psychological and economic resources—resources that we could use to solve global climate change problems and other planetary problems such as world hunger, disease, quality education for all, and overpopulation. In 2009 Lester Brown and the World Watch Institute calculated that if the United States diverted about one-sixth of what it is now spending on defense, there would be enough money to solve all these problems. He also says that we have the technology to solve these problems and that the primary obstacle is the lack of human consciousness and the collective will of the people to implement this technology in this way.
What the World Needs Now: Servant Leaders
We also believe that a new kind of leadership is missing from this equation.. Barry outlined this new form of leadership in his recent book titled, The Servant Leader: What the World Needs Now (2016). In this book, he brings into modern focus the ancient leadership style that Lao Tzu wrote about in the Tao Te Ching back in the 6th century B. C. E.
Lao Tzu’s book has been translated into English and is available at Amazon. Barry’s book about servant leadership is clearly a blueprint for a kind of leadership that could help move humanity beyond the counter-dependent stage where they presently are stuck. In addition, it presents a path for leaders to follow, if they wish to have a more sustainable world where everybody lives in peaceful interdependence.
If the human race is going to survive on this planet, it is absolutely critical that it move quickly beyond the counter-dependent stage and into the independent stage. The United States can play a leadership role in solving these problems if a critical mass of us does our own psychological work.