It is now, for Blogging purposes, the next day, and I pick up the question of identity. Selective memory and editing took the teaching of Jesus and shrunk the idea of soul, a universal kind of idea, into a personal identity so that the resurrection experience logically had to include, not only the individual soul, but the body that housed it as well.
I would like to look at modern psychology as an attempt to detach the notion of identity from its moorings in the soul. That seemed necessary in order to treat aberrant thought and behavior. The treatment of individual souls was left to the religious teachers. Neither group challenged what had become a fundamental understanding for both groups regarding human beings, that is, that each of us has a separate and unique identity. Psychology would commit to treatment and scientific discovery; Western Religion would commit to developing the soul.
From finger prints to DNA to face recognition technology, science has done its job. But in doing such a good job on confirming the specialness of our mortal identity, science has, perhaps inadvertently, made it more difficult to confirm the promise of our eternal identity.
Fundamentalist Christians and Fundamentalist Islamists maintain the faith that whether or not our bodies participate in some kind of heavenly salvation, our individual identities will certainly survive the death of our bodies. Jews and Buddhists do not share that conviction.
Liberal Christians are left struggling to fit the Fundamentalist interpretation of the scripture into metaphor. The question for Liberal Christianity is how to include the promise of an immortal soul that is not confined to ego perpetuation. For that, they need to go back to their beginnings.
One way to get there may be by backtracking via Freud and Jung. Freud developed the ego ideas out of the struggle between the non-verbal very individualistic pleasure seeking impulses of the Id, and the management requirements of the parental super-ego. The ego, with a nod to those two processes is the “I” and “Me” of identity.
Jung thought there there was more going on and developed among other ideas, the idea of the co-unconscious, a process which links human beings and can be understood as foundational to the Id/Super ego formula of Freud. It is out of this co-unconscious that archetypical behaviors emerge and manifest themselves in particular individualistic behavior. In action they are not all that different than the role behaviors developed by J.L. Moreno.
If we look for what process might reasonably be operating underneath the co-unconscious of Jung, we find what Moreno refers to as Spontaneity, which in turn, allowing for the definitional limitations when referenced in therapeutic situations, can justifiably be called creative energy.
From there we are no more than a step (or stumble) away from understanding that the soul can be regarded as simply the name given to the eternal creative energy that manifests itself not only in human being, but in all the matter that shapes the universe in which we live.
In that formula, the “I” and the “me” disappear with my corporal demise, but the particular batch of creative energy that generated and helped give shape and substance to the on going process by which I was identified in life is liberated and flows back to its source.