Before I continue with the myth of Psyche and Eros and how the story points the way for us to attain happiness and joy, I want to explain why I ask you to forego the gender imprint of the plot’s characters. I grew up learning that being masculine was to be aggressive, dominate and goal driven. While, emotions, intuition and empathy were feminine. These were taught as genetic truths. To my shock as I explain in my book, Solar Light Lunar Light these were actually cultural imprints not genetic truths. I learned that the embodiments of solar and lunar energy or non-gendered archetypes can change your life as it did mine. This means our favorite myths also need to be re-visioned to access this archetypal energy. Here’s why.
The first symbols or primitive language that humans used some forty or fifty thousand years, were inspired directly by the Sun and the Moon. (In fact, the Moon at that time was a more important entity for the ancient’s guidance then the Sun). Those two ever-present heavenly bodies described the meaning of life and also birthed the imagination. The ancient mind has always reflected this “twinning” aspect, absorbing the influence of the great ball of fire, that created all life, which we call Sun, and the cool, cratered luminous body we call Moon. Perhaps that’s why in 1790 Du Pui wrote that we are Homo duplex, “double brain with double mind.”
In these original archetypal images, there was no gender. There was Sun and Moon. As 10,000′s of years went by and culture’s formed they began to more and more to give birth to the worship of solar-lunar deities that included both male and female lunar gods and goddess as well as male and female solar gods and goddesses. The qualities that the ancients ascribed to the Sun were generally “oneness” because the sun predictably rises every day. To the Moon they ascribed “variations” because the Moon changes according to a 28-day cycle. Deities with attributes such as strength, courage and clarity of vision have been associated with sunlight and deities with attributes of emotional insight, sensuality and erotic powers have been associated with moonlight. These were seen as human qualities in both men and women. These ancient and universal deities reflect the difference between sunshine and moonlight, and the corresponding inner climate of the human soul.
As agricultural societies arose and the hunting/gathering subsided, fertility was associated more with women, the male solar and lunar deities began to play less and less of a role in those cultures. Gender labeling by cultures is functional as well as political. Eventually in the goddess cultures men were considered sons/lovers of the great goddess, not peers. As these agricultural cultures further evolved the inevitable power and political struggles arose. We lost or repressed this solar-lunar consciousness and forced gender on archetypal energies (even the goddess culture was the result of such rigid “binary” fixation).
Caught in the gender split, we no longer allow nature to guide all of us with its wisdom, insights and imagery. We began to describe our lives and reality more by gender stereotypes. And eventually thousands and thousands of years later when the male warrior reversed the gender dominance of the goddess, the gods began their violent dominance of the goddess. Nature becomes a further outsider, an interloper to be overcome. On such a (war) path, we shall never produce joy, at least never lasting joy.
Nature has created solar-lunar patterns in which to live. But by taking those complementary patterns and stamping them with gender identification, we have come to rely on cultural stereotypes to tell us what masculine and feminine are, distorting what nature shows us. Now, without questioning from where these assumptions derive, men are described as cerebral and assertive and women as receptive and emotional. (Misguided by these assumptions, we might interpret Psyche and Eros as a boy-meets-girls tale, which it is not.) These views do not reflect biology, but culture, and they produce—not joy—but suffering and alienation.
Toward Quantum Wholeness
The soul seeks both sides of its nature, as we shall see in the archetypal story of Psyche and Eros. The solar-lunar balancing needed to achieve joy comes from what I call first “complementarity” and second “superposition”. First, light, the essence of all of life, is not a duality but is described by quantum physics as a complementary wave and particle aspect of each other. Wave is the lunar and particle is the solar. Complementarity means mutually exclusive. Solar and Lunar light cannot both be perceived at the same time. However, to have the fullest picture of life and moving towards joy (light) you need to see both “twin” complementary perspectives. Quantum physicist Fred Allen Wolf (Dr. Quantum) says regarding solar-lunar, “It could be said very simply that every conscious event has a solar and lunar component.” In other words perceiving with “twin” complementary consciousness such as thinking/emotion, goal/visionary and hierarchal/spiral consciousness gives one a fuller perspective of reality.
The quantum physics term, superposition, is useful to understand another dimension of healthy union that help brings completion and joy. In lay person’s terms: when two waves move through the same space, and their crests peak together it is called superposition, the result being greater than the sum of the parts. The two waves unite and their individual energy or strength is amplified beyond their respective energies. Likewise, joy comes of a kind of superposition of empathic resonance between two people. However, if you have gender prejudices or any binary split you cannot achieve superposition, or union, or perform the dance of life as a unified wave.
Generally, each of us tends to be either 51 percent more solar, or 51 percent more lunar. In light of solar-lunar flowing balance, let’s consider the initiations that the ancient myth tells us Psyche must undergo to achieve a complementarity and superposition of energy-joy. We forego the gender imprint—otherwise we will remain stuck in the cultural addiction to idealized romance and fantasy and not ever be able to arrive at true love.