Somanaut's Blog

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Tyranny of the Weak

I take some of my somatic principles from psychology. The struggles in the bodymind are mirrored by the social challenges we all face.  Body parts and systems interact in ways similar to members of social groups.

Marion Woodman is a Canadian psychotherapist, teacher and Jungian analyst. She spoke about how a person who feels scared will desperately attempt to control the actions of those close to them. Rather than transcend the fear, it is easier to avoid the challenges by placing limits on others. Marion termed this “tyranny of the weak”.


For example: John is scared of heights. His friends want to go rock climbing. He says that they must not abandon him, and that anyway climbing isn’t all that much fun, and if they were really his friends they would do something that included him, etc. He basically tells them that his weakness must limit their behaviors.

Just as a person can dominate a social group by claiming a need to limit everyone’s action, so can a portion of the bodymind hinder the larger self from coping and enjoying.

The solution is not necessarily to override the resistance. Fear has it’s place. But paying attention to the details can get us inside the fear, to a place where we have a way to take care of the unmet need. Then we can move on. Ignoring fear, or indulging it, are both problematic. No tyranny- not of the strong, or of the weak.


June 6, 2016 - Posted by | Uncategorized

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