The following is a talk hosted by Theryn Meyer in Vancouver with Dr. Jordan B. Peterson on the topic of the devouring mother. While this might seem like some obscure psychological discussion, with no bearing on your personal reality, I can assure you nothing could be further from the truth. The human psyche is fundamentally the same, at its core level, which means that people tend to act in similar ways given certain conditions—this is the basis for social engineering and propaganda. Insofar as this topic is concerned, the devouring mother is something almost everyone faces in their lives and has played a major role in shaping the world for millennia.
From a psychological perspective, war and the lust for it is driven by a deep need for social acceptance. In society this comes in the form of the motherland, who demands of her children-citizens that they honor their obligations to the state, one of which being the need to go to war so as to prove one’s worth to society.
In times of old, mothers were encouraged to shame their sons who refused the call of war. Those who failed to do so were “devoured” and abandoned socially, becoming shamed ones, the unclean, who could not defend the motherland.
But the devouring or hateful mother archetype manifests in a seemingly infinite number of ways. To be sure this topic is far too vast to completely address briefly here, but for now, take the time to begin to consider this dynamic of consciousness.
An archetype is a feature of consciousness that all people make contact with but few fully recognize as such. It is a deep aspect of our being that affects the conscious mind but is not managed by it. They are, in part, quintessential ideas, concepts, and images that organize information into a narrative we can understand.
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For example, the devouring mother archetype is one that can be described as a woman who selfishly loves her children, “protecting” them from the real world to such an extent that they become permanent infants—incompetent wards of the mother for life. She is only loving when her children do what she wants, and she is hateful, cruel, and even homicidal when they don’t.
As social creatures, we need acceptance from our mothers, partially because when we are born we are completely dependent on our parents for survival. As a result, when we feel or get the impression our parents don’t want us, a powerful desire to gain acceptance takes hold. This motivates us in many different ways to do things that make us feel more worthy of our parental figures, acknowledged in psychology generals as the motivating power of shame. When we grow up, society takes on this role of parental figure, shaming us to do things to earn acceptance from our peers, society, or the world in general.
This shame motivates us to buy consumer goods, have children, go to war, eat toxic foods, and engage in codependent relationships, to name a few—all in an effort to regain favor with the archetypal mother deep within the subconscious mind.
The state, at present, is a hateful mother archetype because society dumbs down its citizens, making them incompetent to such an extent that they are wards of the state, who cannot manage their own lives. The quintessential oedipal mother who prevents her children from growing up. This is not some obscure conspiracy theory, it is a legal and literal reality, and the basis of every “civilized” (legalized) society on Earth.
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She is the nanny state that seeks to protect citizens by sheltering them from reality.
She is the various so-called civil rights movements that seek to suppress free speech in the name of political correctness. And she is the unacknowledged social policy that implores parents to lie to their children in an effort to “keep them safe” all while robbing them of the very life experience they need to face the world with wisdom.
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Now this concept of the mother is itself a representation of a much deeper aspect of being, which is our relationship to the divine.
Consider that a mother is impregnated by a father, and uses her own body and mind as the prima materia to create the body of the child, who spends nine months in the womb where every need is taken care of. The mother, in this sense, is god-like in that she provides all things for the child, food, water, shelter, and her own blood from which the child grows, not to mention subtle energy and emotional biasing. And then, at the end of the time of gestation, she gives birth to the child, leaving the all-loving embrace of the womb to enter the world as an independent being.
This is a microcosmic expression of the cosmic archetypal relationship of the Creator to the creature. For we move, breathe, and have or being within the divine, from which we are made within an all-loving spiritual embrace. And while we are in the world, we are similarly “independent” of the Creator, who is everywhere present yet hiding. We have to face life alone, without our mother’s help, just like we have to face the universe without the Creator’s direct interference.
Given that the mother is, in this sense, a god to the child, when a mother is anything less than perfectly unconditionally loving, supportive, and most importantly, supportive of the child’s independence, a schism forms in the psyche of the child, wherein they feel abandoned and unworthy. The effect this has on our children, who grow up to be adults, is as all-encompassing as the effect of telling a child that the Creator of all things hates you (original sin)—it is a devastating trauma, arguably a primary trauma—that influences us in seemingly all ways.
In the weeks ahead, I hope to share a series that will scientifically demonstrate how much this hateful mother archetype influences us today. Once we become aware of the hateful mother schism present within the human psyche, we will feel much more compassion for ourselves and others, along with having the essential knowledge of self we need to heal.
As an introduction to that work, contemplate the ideas presented below and ask yourself, where is the devouring mother archetype in my life and society? Can you see her?
The talk begins at approximately the 16 minute mark.
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About The Author
Justin Deschamps is a truth seeker inspired by philosophy and the love of wisdom in all its forms. He was formally trained in physics and psychology, later discovering the spiritual basis of reality and the interconnected nature of all things. He strives to find the path of truth while also walking it himself, sharing what he knows with others so as to facilitate cooperative change for a better future. He is a student of all and a teacher to some. Follow on Twitter @sitsshow, Facebook Stillness in the Storm, and steemit @justin-sits.
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E in BC says
I’m a big fan of Jordan Peterson’s work, though I do disagree with some of his value judgements, namely with him describing himself as a religious apologist and all the baggage that comes with that.
By the definition put forward by this article, Christianity as well as the state are easily defined as “devouring mother”. I wonder if Jordan Peterson notices this discrepancy in his views, and if so, how does he process this?
Justin Deschamps says
Great comments. I don’t know how he contends with those points. Perhaps he’ll speak to them at some point in the future.
Yeppit Yeffen says
I think Jordan Peterson, partially sheltering reality, setting up a positive and negative debate of points to argue; physical theorists have no accurate account for origin of polarity…in the universe – let alone – Silent Weapons for Quiet Wars! I wish he could concentrate more on AI…
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I also think it is very disconcerting to disagree with Dr. Jordan Peterson!
Spines Onyango says
You said a devouring mother are those who only love their children when the do things they like but hate when they do the opposite. But this is against one of the 12 rules of life ; Don’t let your kids do what will make you hate them. How can you help me understand your claim against my objection. Thank you.
Justin Deschamps says
Your question is valid I’d say. The rule is stated very generally, but the basic idea is that you want to socialize your children by teaching them how to face situations and create new modes of behavior that acknowledge the sensibilities of others. This requires children go out into the world, not avoid it.
Zachary Stalnaker says
I love how you highlight the divine nature of women and how their capacity for creation reflects God’s love for us.
Justin Deschamps says
Glad you found it enlightening.