Defence Defend Defended Defending

Any sort of defence system such as a castle, a shield, weapons, fighting, may depict one of the basic ways of dealing with life – being defensive. Defensiveness means that in some way one wards off the impact of life experiences. In this way the influence of these experiences negative or positive, are kept from being taken in and absorbed or integrated.

For instance a person may have very rigid religious beliefs and defend themselves from hearing anything which enlarges or questions these beliefs. They may do this by arguing away any other ideas or experiences, or by holding a sense of righteousness and difference between themselves and other people. Similarly one can defend using clever intellectual argument which yet has no open doors to allow new ideas, feelings or new experience. See: castle; defence mechanisms; anima under archetypes.

The most ancient part of our brain, one we share with reptiles and birds is called the R complex – R for reptilian. This part of your brain deals with deeply instinctive behaviour such as flight, fight, procreation, swallowing, automatic reflexes, inbuilt mating behaviour, territorial defence and aggression. This R complex developed about 200 million years ago and is still an underpinning part of what influences your behaviour today. Dreams often portray these urges in you as snakes or lizards and are part of our defence system – or, if it is mot dealt with well it becomes inturned and destructive. See Levels of the Brain

Example: William massaged at the area and discovered a pea sized nodule. It was like a concentrated lump of pain. When he pressed I started moaning, crying, and at one point, laughing. I realised that not being influenced by anyone was a defence I had used for most of my life. Underneath that was the laughing. As William continued words started coming up by themselves. The cries of pain were real, but without linking with feelings. I felt this massage method could release the pain, but it would be like a dry labour, long and unnecessarily painful.

Later I found quite few of these nodules of pain on my back, and then I learnt how to really express anger from my past by beating hell out of cushions with a stick. Then slowly the nodules disappeared.


Useful Questions and Hints:

What am I defending against?

Can I recognise ways I defend myself with very rigid beliefs?

Do I ever get aggressive when faced with some idea or belief?

See Techniques for Exploring your DreamsNothing Can Hurt You in Your DreamsDreams are a reflection of your inner world


Copyright © 1999-2010 Tony Crisp | All rights reserved