Most people, including mental-health professionals, are unaware of how strongly we know ourselves and identify with ourselves through a condition of non-being known as inner passivity.
This mental and emotional identity is a widespread psychological condition that’s largely unconscious. We aren’t aware of how much it causes us to feel self-doubt, to question our value, and to disconnect from our best self. In this way, inner passivity undermines the qualities that a democracy requires of its people.
Inner passivity blocks us from accessing our integrity, dignity, courage, compassion, moral intelligence, and love. As we begin to see and understand our inner passivity, we become aware of vital knowledge concerning inner conflict and psychological dysfunction.
Our democracy needs the deeper knowledge that exposes this passivity. As we grow into a recognition of our inner passivity, we begin to understand the psychological undercurrents of ongoing conflict in our own psyche and in the dynamics of society and politics.
New York Times columnist David Brooks, perhaps the mainstream media’s deepest thinker, wrote this week about the requirements of democratic citizenship, saying “The demands of democracy are clear—the elevation and transformation of your very self. If you are not transformed, you are just skating by.”
Through inner passivity, we find ourselves unable to stand up to (or represent ourselves effectively against) our inner critic, which is a primitive, authoritarian aspect of our psyche that harasses us, puts us on the defensive, and curtails inner freedom. We’re less conscious as human beings when we haven’t exposed this inner conflict and made efforts to resolve it. [Read more…]