Donald Trump and the Collective Id

Synopsis: Donald Trump and the Collective Id — the hidden material we all try to hide occasionally bubbles to the surface.

Of Wayne’s many books, the one closest to today’s topic is: This Endless Moment
trump© Huffington Post

I could never be classified as a Freudian, but strangely, with the hatching of The Donald, my mind went to good old Sigmund. I suppose I was also nudged in that direction due to an article by Deepak Chopra, linking The Donald to The Shadow (a construct of Carl Jung.) And Jung in turn was led by a pretty good understanding of Eastern religions; in this case of Yin and Yang.

Heavy, eh?

Anyway, the Id, Ego, and Superego are imaginary constructs for the workings of the mind–in other words, we can’t locate an Id, but we can certainly identify it by how aspects of our minds operate.

Freud’s idea is that the Id (das es, or the it in German) is each person’s innate state of what Stephen Colbert might call “wantiness.” It is undifferentiated, and seeks pleasure while avoiding pain. Lacking any form of judgement, it is simply “for or against.”

The Id does not have the ability to reason; it simply reacts.

I’m not sure if there actually is a collective Id, but if there is one, the words that flow from the mouth of The Donald is what it would sound like. He’s sort of like an unfiltered expression of Id-ness.

What one hears is a screed–unhappiness, dis-satisfaction, judgement and blame. If you listen, it’s just a list of grievances. What follows is a blanket, “I’m going to fix this immediately.” Or, in his own words,

I have a message for all of you: the crime and violence that today afflicts our nation will soon come to an end. Beginning on January 20th, 2017, safety will be restored.”

As if.

It’s almost like The Donald imagines that his tiny little hands are gripping some magic switch. I say it, and poof, it’s done.

Not how. Not anything. Just the assurances that flow from a mind deeply connected to the collective Id of those who think they’ve somehow missed out on the American Dream, whatever that is.

Freud’s description of the Id makes it clear that the problem with the Id is just that–it has no way out of the messes it blathers on about. It’s job is to stir the emotions, and then to smile with self-satisfaction.

The collective Id in 2016 is not really different from the Id of Germany after WWI. Burdened with crushing reparations, the country bombed and battered, the economy in the tanker, the great masses thought they would never get out of the hole they themselves had dug.

And along comes a German guy who could make a speech… you gotta give him that. He “spoke the truth,” articulated the collective angst, the desperation, the loss of the “German Dream.” He swayed the middle class blue collar class that thought they’d never again be what they had been.

And then he proposed a solution: “Build a wall, and keep out the Mexicans! It’s entirely the fault of the Muslims! And if someone objects to what I’m saying, beat them up–and I’ll pay for your defense! America for ‘real Americans.’ ”

Oh. Wait. That’s The Donald.

Schicklgruber blamed the Jews, followed by the gypsies, gay people, and anyone that wasn’t… wait for it… an Aryian. Germany for the real Germans.

In Shadow theory, Jung proposed an unconscious zone of negativity that bubbled to the surface in dreams. Wikipedia quotes Jung:

The shadow personifies everything that the subject refuses to acknowledge about himself” and represents “a tight passage, a narrow door, whose painful constriction no one is spared who goes down to the deep well”. If and when “an individual makes an attempt to see his shadow, he becomes aware of (and often ashamed of) those qualities and impulses he denies in himself but can plainly see in others—such things as egotism, mental laziness, and sloppiness; unreal fantasies, schemes, and plots; carelessness and cowardice; inordinate love of money and possessions.”

Notice the language: Jung asserts that the things we discover buried in the Shadow are projected out on others. The issue them becomes external to the person perceiving the muck–“they need to change, or be eliminated.”

One could link the Shadow to the Yin side of Taoism.

The Yin side is dark, intuitive. It contains the scary stuff, and is dealt with through working toward balance with the rational Yang side. This parallels Freud, too: in Freud’s world-view, the Ego (Ich, or ‘I’ in German) performs this balancing act between the greedy ravings of the Id and the rigid demands of the Superego (uber Ich, or ‘over I,’ in German.)

When we look at the Id, the Shadow, the Yang side, we see that there is no thought, no depth. There are just ravings of “the dark side.”

The Donald swims in this stream, and is actually quite proficient at expressing it. He also repeats the mantra, “I’m the only one who can fix this. Trust me, I will do it.” No evidence, just whatever burbles to the surface of his “big mind, lots of big words… and other parts of me” self.

And millions want him to be President.

Shades of 1932.

More next time.

About the Author: Wayne C. Allen is the web\‘s Simple Zen Guy. Wayne was a Private Practice Counsellor in Ontario until June of 2013. Wayne is the author of five books, the latest being The. Best. Relationship. Ever. See: –The Phoenix Centre Press

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