sushidog: (Eye)
[personal profile] sushidog
So, I've been thinking about the parts of ourselves, prompted in part by [livejournal.com profile] jhaelan's exploration of himself, and partly by some thinking I've been doing about who and what I am, and I found something interesting. Well, OK, _I_ found it interesting.
It's not great surprise, I think, that many people feel that they are made up of several different selves, or aspects of self; Jhaelan refers to them as masks. In some extreme cases, they may even manifest as completely seperate personalities (although the jury is still out on that one). Sometimes they live happily side by side, and sometimes, often perhaps, they cause internal conflict, and then they need to be explored and reconciled.
My way of exploring my aspects has been to visualise and personify them, so I thought I'd introduce you all to them.


First off, there's my maternal aspect. She's a big, comfortable, soft woman, tied in to her female ancestors, and quite traditional. She's the one who cooks and provides comfort. She's warm and generous and safe and kind and she's also happy and secure; she has a clear role, and it's one that she is well able to fulfill; after all, _everybody_ likes home baking, right? She's modelled a little on my grandmother, and on my great aunt, but she's also a little like Ma Larkin, and a little like Mama Morton. She's earthy and has a sort of old-fashioned sensuality. She laughs a lot.

Secondly, there's my intellectual aspect. She looks surprisingly like Miss Hardbroom from the Worst Witch series; she's thin and slightly forbidding, dressed in sleek black clothes which manage to be stern in a slightly slexy, perhaps even fetishy way. Her hair is pulled back tightly into a bun. You wouldn't mess with her. She's clever, agressively so, and she's intolerant of stupidity, and of weakness, and of emotion. When I'm hurt or upset, she tries to take over and think her way through whatever situation I'm in, and she becomes frustrated if that doesn't work; she feels that her brain should be able to get her through any difficulty. She works too hard, and analyses everything, but sometimes, because she's so logical, and not at all emotional, she misses the point.

Finally, there's the emotional aspect. She's a little girl, perhaps six years old. She has long messy hair which falls over her face, partially hiding the slight air of grubbiness around her mouth, and the dark circles around her eyes. When she laughs, she laughs with her whole self, as children do. But she spends rather more time curled up in a ball, crying. She's very scared of Miss Academia above, and Miss Academia disapproves of her. Lately though, they've been trying to communicate a bit more, which is probably a good thing.

So that's me, or three of me, at least. What I found interesting is that having identified these three selves, it occurred to me that I'm not the first person to describe them. They are maiden, mother and hag. They are id, ego and superego. They are youth, adulthood and age.
In a way, I'm glad; it's nice to feel tied in to something bigger than oneself. At the same time, perhaps I'm a little disappointed; to think you are unique, and to discover that in fact you're unoriginal, is a little flattening...

Date: 2003-10-03 01:26 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] sarcaustik.livejournal.com
Tori Amos - Tear in Your Hand

Date: 2003-10-03 01:27 am (UTC)

Date: 2003-10-03 01:28 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] zoo-music-girl.livejournal.com
Tori Amos: Tear in your hand.

You are unique, there are aspects of your personality that don't fit those three selves.

Date: 2003-10-03 01:31 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] sushidog.livejournal.com
*point*
And thankyou! :-)

Date: 2003-10-03 01:55 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] hirez.livejournal.com
Wow.

How d'you do that? It's certainly beyond my limited brain.

As far as I can tell, there's this amorphous mess of flailing insecurity that people are charitable enough to call JH-R.

Date: 2003-10-03 02:11 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] sushidog.livejournal.com
*heh* I've spent my entire life over-analysing everything, myself included. I'd have done a pretty shoddy job of it if I couldn't at least describe _three_ of my neurosesaspects.
But thankyou!

Date: 2003-10-03 05:01 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] sushidog.livejournal.com
You have a flailing amorphous Hirez in your head? That must be... uncomfortable. Have you considered trepanning?

Date: 2003-10-03 05:12 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] sheepthief.livejournal.com
Actually I am beginning to feel like there's something or someone flailing about in my head. But no, I meant that I'd had the words taken right out of my mouth.

Date: 2003-10-03 02:04 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] eddie777.livejournal.com
The cut text is Sympathy for the Devil - Rolling Stones. The above aspects of self appear thoroughly healthy to me.

Date: 2003-10-03 02:33 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] zoo-music-girl.livejournal.com
I rarely see cut tag texts because I use summary view! I'm clearly missing opportunities for points!

Date: 2003-10-03 02:35 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] sushidog.livejournal.com
How do you get a summary view? I don't think I even knew there was such a thing!

Date: 2003-10-03 02:43 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] zoo-music-girl.livejournal.com
It's a custom style that [livejournal.com profile] hbergeron built and [livejournal.com profile] lapis_lazuli tweaked. You can only use it if you're a paid user.

Replace your username with mine in the following URL:

http://www.livejournal.com/customview.cgi?user=zoo_music_girl&styleid=130615&nooverride=1&checkcookies=1&skip=0

i.e.

http://www.livejournal.com/customview.cgi?user=sushidog&styleid=130615&nooverride=1&checkcookies=1&skip=0

You can also fiddle with the URL if you use filters as that one only shows your default view.
This is my summary view for one of my filters.

http://www.livejournal.com/customview.cgi?user=zoo_music_girl&styleid=130615&nooverride=1&checkcookies=1&skip=0&filter=64

Date: 2003-10-03 02:06 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] childeric.livejournal.com
Your superego tells you to bake cakes? Fabulous!

Mine just tells me not to have a good time. The superego to me seems to be more or less entirely indistinguishable from a spoilsport. It's the spectre at the feast. Personally I'd like my id and ego to sit down, settle their differences (which aren't, actually, all that great) and get together enough cash to have my superego caught and shot.

Date: 2003-10-03 02:13 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] sushidog.livejournal.com
No no, my _ego_ tells me to bake cakes. My superego is busy analysing whether or not I should bake cakes, and if so why, and exactly what sort of cake would be appropriate. My id, naturally, is crying because it wants cake and no-one is giving it any, and anyway it didn't want _that_ sort of cake, it wanted sticky chocolate cake.
And a balloon.
That sings songs.

Date: 2003-10-03 02:19 am (UTC)
reddragdiva: (Default)
From: [personal profile] reddragdiva
My superego tells me to do the stuff I'm supposed to so I can then run wild. Hmm yes!

Date: 2003-10-03 02:48 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] jhaelan.livejournal.com
They are maiden, mother and hag. They are id, ego and superego. They are youth, adulthood and age.

It's interesting to see you tie your selves to these themes; is this Miss Academia who has made this entry do you think?

Date: 2003-10-03 02:56 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] sushidog.livejournal.com
*heh* Yes, Miss Academia makes most of my entries here, although she sometimes allows the other two to inform them. Very occasionally, the child takes over the keyboard, although generally only in locked posts.
There are actually other themes that fit in too; in psychotherapy, there's a school which sees human interaction in terms of child, adult, and parent. Relationships often slip into the parent-child model, although in general, a adult-adult model tends to be healthier, as long as it is informed sufficiently by the child and the parent.

Date: 2003-10-03 11:02 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] vajra.livejournal.com
Oh, please. *g*

If you could fit all of you behind these three masks, then the "map would be the territory" and thats all there would be of you. That's not the person I know.

I'd suspect that these three things are only very general ideas about a part of you on the day you wrote them down.

I also think stuff that fails to take into account the "things unseen" about people is like taking apart and ice cube with tweezers instead of surfing down the side of the glacier. We're so much more than most even have a clue about.

And your DNA says you're quite the original, so you don't have to take my word for it. :-)

--B

Date: 2003-10-03 04:26 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] sushidog.livejournal.com
Perhaps these three are my primary colours; there are shades and combinations and tones that go deeper than any one of the three above, but that are made up of combinations and permutations of them...
Or something... :-)

Date: 2003-10-03 04:40 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] vajra.livejournal.com
Last time I checked, my monitor claimed the ability to display over 14 million colors. Ya got any idea how much more complex, interesting and beautiful you are than my 21" here? *g*

--B

Date: 2003-10-04 10:23 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] damerell.livejournal.com
Yes.

The Hester I know - even without her cleavage out [1] - is not much like any of these things...

[1] CRUDE joke introduced because I am DRUNK

Date: 2008-07-23 08:44 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] miriammoules.livejournal.com
Wow. Thank you for linking to this.

Mine fragment slightly more than this, and are in flux at the moment, but I well identify with what you say. Mind if I friend you?

Date: 2008-07-23 09:03 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] sushidog.livejournal.com
Sure, have friended you! :-)

Date: 2008-07-23 10:12 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] tamaranth.livejournal.com
thanks for linking to this! That's really interesting, an exercise I think I should try. How did you approach this?

as for maiden/mother/hag, there is a reason they're archetypes. They work. They are in all of us.

Date: 2008-07-23 10:41 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] sushidog.livejournal.com
Um, it was a while ago, so I'm not entirely sure; I think I started by thinking aout the various (and varying) "thing" that are important to me, and trying to arrange them into groups; I fond they clustered quite strongly, and I cold then examine each separate cluster, if that makes sense!

Date: 2008-07-24 12:22 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] sparrowpunk.livejournal.com
Ack, I keep getting invalid form submissions- sorry if you see more than one of this.

Thank you for linking this, it's very interesting. Do you mind if I friend you?

Date: 2008-07-24 09:04 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] sushidog.livejournal.com
Sure ting, I see we already have several friends and a Katherine Dunn quote in common! :-)
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