Casting Precious into the Cracks of Doom: Androgyny, Alchemy, Evolution and the One Ring (Part I)

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“I am in some sense boundless, my being encompassing the farthest limits of the universe, touching and moving every atom of existence. The same is true of everything else…It is not just that ‘we are all in it’ together. We all are it, rising and falling as one living body.” —-Francis Cook

“God is nearer to me than I am to myself; He is just as near to wood and stone, but they do not know it.”

—Meister Eckart

The Gnostic Gospel According to Thomas:

When Jesus was asked, “When will the kingdom come?” He replied: “It will not come by waiting for it…Rather, the Kingdom of the Father is spread out upon the earth, and men do not see it.” Jesus also said, “…the Kingdom is inside of you, and it is outside of you.”

“Jesus said to them: When you make the two one, and when you make the inner as the outer and the outer as the inner and the above as the below, and when you make the male and the female into as single one, so that the male will not be male and the female (not) be female…then shall you enter (the Kingdom).”

“He has no knowledge of his soul. How could he tell her apart from things and men? He could find his soul in desire itself, but not in the objects of desire. If he possessed his desire, and his desire did not possess him, he would lay a hand on his soul, since his desire is the image and expression of his soul.”  —C.G. Jung, The Red Book

This three-part series will explore androgyny as the key to unlock many of the mysteries of: the 6,000 years of Feminine-hating dominator societies that continue to rule our world, key forms of religious extremism, the torturous enchantments of romantic relations, gender identity, and the core meaning of the ring symbolism and other aspects of the Tolkien mythology. That’s a fairly tall order and I am open to your feedback as to whether I seem to b e succeeding with such (grandiose?) ambitions.  Given the density of the subject matter you can expect writing with a lot of density, but I’m hoping that it is readable  for you, the perceptive reader.

Androgyny is at the core of many of the most difficult paradoxes and delusions of the interlocking realms of eros, religion, psychology, gender relations, spirituality and sexuality. We will begin with a discourse on what androgyny is and isn’t, its history and role in human development individually and historically. The second part will employ androgyny as a key to unlock the ring symbolism of the Tolkien mythology which will expand the meaning of androgyny and illustrate its extreme relevance to the present human predicament individually and collectively. (This section, and many other Tolkien allusions scattered throughout, may be a problem for people who are completely unfamiliar with the Tolkien mythology. I could give a synopsis of the story as an appendix, but that seems like a poor way for someone to be introduced to Tolkien). The third part will discuss the six thousand year era of patriarchal, dominator societies, theories about their origin, and the millennia-long campaign against women and the Feminine. It will consider evidence of a cycle shift underway, as well as dreams and mythologies that reflect a metamorphosis of gender. The fourth and last part will suggest ways to integrate androgyny into our psyches and lives.

My understanding of androgyny is greatly indebted to June Singer, a fellow Jungian, who has done by far the best formal study of androgyny. Our lives paralleled a little bit, we’re both Jewish and from New York City. I met June briefly at a Jungian conference in New York in the Eighties, and in the introduction to her book Androgyny she particularly thanks Werner Engle, a colleague of Jung whom I also knew as well as his nephew Jonathan Goldberg, also a Jungian analyst, who is a close friend of mine.  I believe her book on Androgyny (Androgyny: The Opposites Within—an earlier edition had a different title: Androgyny Toward a New Theory of Sexuality) is one of the most important books of the 20th century. In 2004 I learned from Jonathan Goldberg of the death of June Singer and more about her relationship with his uncle, Werner Engle.

When I first wrote this, I felt that my use of quotes from June Singer was excessive and that I should paraphrase her more. Every time I tried, I realized how elegantly phrased, concise and penetrating they are, I realized that the muse would never give me any motivating energy to rewrite them because they are already fully realized gems. So I am including large numbers of them, but I also encourage everyone to get her books: June Singer on Amazon 

Other sources I’ve found on androgyny have been no where near as illuminating as June Singer’s work.  For example, another book on androgyny, which deserves some pioneering credit for possibly being the first published book to have the word “androgyny” in the title is Toward a Recognition of Androgyny by Carolyn G. Heilbrun, It was published just three years before Singer’s book. Unfortunately, it is nowhere near as insightful or useful. Ms. Heilbrun who was an English professor at Columbia (an advocate for suicide as a conscious choice, she exercised her escape clause in 2003) seems to find the Western academic canon of literature to be the only part of the phenomenal world worthy of attention. For example, she makes the absurd statement that, “…America has not produced a novel whose androgynous implications match those of The Scarlet Letter…” Has Ms. Heilbrun, or anyone, read every novel produced in America since The Scarlet Letter debuted in 1850? I don’t think so. She just assumes that anything that hasn’t come to her attention as an English professor can’t possibly have merit, and typical of the parochial academic literary critic doesn’t even bother to consider the whole genre of fantasy literature, which is actually the mainstream of literature, and in which she would find much more about androgyny than she or Nathaniel Hawthorne ever dreamed of.

We’ll begin this exploration of androgyny by summarizing June Singer’s most important insights.  Singer claims that androgyny may be the oldest archetype of which we still have any experience, and she finds it embedded in Hinduism, Taoism, Buddhism and the Platonic tradition. Androgyny is an intrapsychic orientation and not necessarily related to physical appearance, gender preference and other attributes with which it is often confused.  An androgynous person could look distinctly male or female, while an androgynous-looking person may not be androgynous.  Similarly, bisexuality, an interpersonal orientation, is not necessarily a sign of androgyny. Androgyny, however, is a key that may unlock the prison of sex and gender for those able to achieve it.

The androgyne represents a conscious fusion of archetypal masculine and feminine qualities, while the “hermaphrodite,” as Singer adapts the term, is a person where masculine and feminine are merely confused. Many people who are costumed in an androgynous way are actually hermaphrodites and have a connection to Dionysus who as Singer points out:

….is kept in the women’s quarters and disguised as a girl in order to keep him from being discovered by Hera. He is treated and educated like a girl and he grows up to be effeminate. Unable to differentiate Feminine from Masculine functioning in himself, he scarcely knows who he is. Like an eternal youth he wanders over the world, changing shape, going mad, drinking himself into insensibility, living the abandonment of total nature and, like nature, experiencing the cycles of death and rebirth.
Dionysus is not the true androgyne any more than Hippolyte was, for he has not come to peace with his Feminine side. His Masculine and Feminine aspects are not fused, they are merely confused…
Dionysus as god of madness, ecstasy, drunkenness and frenzy—was given to wild outbursts of excitement, performed preferably before an audience.

This description of Dionysus also tells us that many of the rock stars described as androgynous, like the young Mick Jagger, were channeling the Dionysus archetype, but not androgynous as Singer defines the term. Singer very incisively points out that our culture tends to provide representations of only the immature, confused and acting out face of androgyny.

Singer quotes James Hillman in The Myth of Analysis,

“….the peculiar tendency in our own culture to suppress these androgynous images. I noted that when such images do appear, they show themselves not so much as true androgynes, with their compensatory Masculine/Feminine aspects working in harmonious relationship to one another, but rather as the imperfect, incomplete, distorted image of the hermaphrodite. Such an image is the double-sexed Dionysus, whose borderline nature makes it impossible to tell whether he is “mad or sane, wild or somber, sexual or psychic, male or female, conscious or unconscious.”

In popular speech people continually confuse androgynes, hermaphrodites, transvestites, transexuals, intersexuals and bisexuals. For example, in Dan Brown’s runaway best seller The Da Vinci Code, the protagonist, Robert Langdon, is lecturing a group of prisoners on Leonardo Da Vinci:

“ ‘…Da Vinci was in tune with the balance between male and female. He believed a human soul could not be enlightened unless it had both male and female elements.’

‘You mean like chicks with dicks?’ someone called out.’”

Brown may be contributing to the confusion somewhat by using the terms “male” and “female” which imply anatomical differences. Jungians use the terms “Feminine” and “Masculine” to refer to the complimentary archetypal principles which the Chinese called “yin” and “yang.” Masculine and Feminine, yin and yang, exist in all human beings. It is not uncommon at all for a particular female to be far more Masculine than a particular male. A couple of years ago I gave a talk about Tolkien and androgyny and began by carefully explaining this distinction. Despite this, at the end of the talk I was amazed to get several comments (especially from women in the audience) who thought I was stereotyping men and women when I was referring to Masculine and Feminine. People are so used to being stereotyped by their gender that even these archetypal terms can generate automatic defenses. So let me state one more time: Masculine does not equate with men, Feminine does not equate with women, these are archetypal qualities all humans possess and from the point of view of androgyny need to be acknowledged and integrated parts of all self-actualizing people.

The first mention of the androgyne in Greek Philosophy is in Plato’s Symposium. Aristophanes is speaking:

“[The] original human nature was not like the present, but different. The sexes were not two, as they are now, but originally three in number; there was a man, woman and a union of the two, having a name corresponding to this double nature, which once had a real existence, but is now lost, and the word “Androgynous” is only preserved as a term of reproach.”

Aristophanes describes the original humans as spherical, and containing both genders, but Zeus, wanting to humble them, divided them in half,

“Each of us, when separated, having one side only, like a flat fish, is but the indenture of a man, and is always looking for his other half…the intense yearning which each of them has for the other does not appear to be the desire of lover’s intercourse, but of something else which the soul of either evidently desires and cannot tell, and of which she has only a dark and doubtful presentiment.”

The movie, Hedwig and the Angry Inch, a wonderfully creative and funny film about a transexual entertainer, includes an animated version of Aristophane’s mythology of the androgyne. In an interview, the movie’s creator and star, John Cameron Mitchell, compares Hedwig’s blonde wig to the One Ring of the Tolkien books. The relevance of this association will become much clearer in the Tolkien section.  The non-androgynous person (Hedwig would have to be considered an hermaphrodite) will crave persons and objects to complete him or her in the obsessive way that Gollum seeks to be reconnected to his Precious. As Singer puts it,

“In the hope of achieving the feeling of love, this mystical joining of two beings into primordial oneness, people will do the most ill-advised things, beyond all reason. The loss of love can drive people to murder or suicide. …The archetype of the Androgyne is at the base of much of the anxiety that surrounds love, and especially it is connected with the emotions of jealousy, because it points to the fear of being torn asunder from that other.”

The nonandrogynous person is prone toward infatuation and obsessive dependence on another to feel whole and complete.  Lacking awareness of inner wholeness, they desperately seek to import wholeness from outside, a painful and self-defeating aspiration.

Singer relates the loss of androgyny to the Perennial Philosophy and the densifying precession of four ages which have involved a fall from light, wholeness and androgyny (for parallels see The Mutant Vs. the Machine…, A Splinter in your Mind and Clock-Time Metastasizes toward 2012 ). Singer writes,

“…as we examine more mythological systems we will observe a consistent theme in which each succeeding world is of a lesser quality than that which preceded it. We saw this in the Greek system, with its progression from Golden to Silver to Bronze to Iron ages.”

“The four fold structure of mythology: ….Creation and the created world we know and live in belongs to the fourth stage. By this time the Primal Androgyne has either fallen from the spernal sphere to earth or the androgynous figure has split in two—and then perhaps into many parts—lost its immortality, and finally become human.”

From my point of view, the ultimate outer form of the androgyne would be that of a mercurial shape-shifter. Inwardly, the androgyne is a shape-shifter and inter-dimensional traveler connected to the axis mundi. As a changeling, the outer manifestation of the androgyne would alter to accord with the vicissitudes of psychic intentionality and circumstance. Singer points out that the Gnostics had a similar idea about Christ:

“Another Gnostic conceptualization of the Son of Man is that he is Aipolos, the pole (also a pun on the Greek word for goat herd, the one who must turn in all directions).This figure is symbolized by Mercurius, the ever-elusive trickster who is of essence but whom one cannot grasp; also Proteus, the shape shifter, in whom every quality exists in potentia.”

Although the New Testament tells us virtually nothing about Christ’s appearance, he has almost always been depicted as rather androgynous, though it is more likely that he was short, stocky, and swarthy with lots of body hair. In 2002, Popular Mechanics published an article entitled “The Real Face of Jesus.” British scientists, assisted by Israeli archeologists, came up with the best approximation that the new science of forensic anthropology can offer of what Jesus  looked like. Their working assumption was that Jesus looked similar to what other Galilean Semites of that era looked like. The assumption is backed up by the passage in the Gospel of Mathew where Jesus is arrested in the garden of Gethsemane before the Crucifixion. Judas Isacriot had to point Jesus out to the soldiers because they could not tell him apart from the disciples. The image the scientists came up with would be much more likely to draw the attention of airport security than the approval of many Christians used to the androgynous, Nordic Jesus. (An anti-Tea Party protester I saw recently held a sign that said “Obama isn’t a dark-skinned socialist giving free health care to the poor–you are thinking of Jesus.”) How he is imagined to look, however, may be far more appropriate from the point of view of archetypal projection, since he has always been the bearer of an androgynous message. It is especially the Jesus who was edited out of the New Testament (mostly by the pagan Roman Emperor Constantine) who expresses an alchemical gnosis of androgyny.  From The Gnostic Gospel According to Thomas:

“..Jesus said to them: When you make the two one, and when you make the inner as the outer and the outer as the inner and the above as the below, and when you make the male and the female into as single one, so that the male will not be male and the female (not) be female…then shall you enter (the Kingdom).”

As Singer points out,

“Androgyny is the act of becoming more conscious and therefore more whole…”

Singer follows Jung’s lead into alchemy, recognizing it as a science of human transformation, with much to say about androgyny. The Taoist I Ching, which employs an alchemical metaphor throughout, emphasizes the need for the conscious person to follow the path of “reverse alchemy” to regain their original essence. Acquired conditioning, beginning at birth, separates us from our original nature and wholeness, and the conditioning acquired from any culture is always full of intensive gender role programming. Aristophane’s myth goes further and suggests that human incarnation, incarnating into a gender specific body, is itself a departure from wholeness. Recent research demonstrates that a good part of gender differences which were believed to be culturally conditioned, turn out to have very strong biological underpinnings.  Regaining androgyny, therefore, may be more difficult than even the heroic efforts necessary to break free of acquired conditioning. Some gender limitations may be over-determined, with part of their determinative influence locked down even into our DNA. To become androgynous may be analogous to trying to break the source code of the matrix, which is multi-layered, including both social and genetic coding.

The alchemists, and consciousness pioneers like Jung and Gurdjieff, understood that their work was “contra naturum, it was against the enormous inertial mass of nature or matrix (“matrix” actually means mother). Gurdjieff even said that the work to not be mechanical was “against God.” At first glance it would seem that such an effort would be the supreme violation of the Taoist principle of working with, rather than against, cosmic forces. But as I’ve written elsewhere (see Dynamic Paradoxicalism…) it is our “True Will” (a phrase I am borrowing from Aleister Crowley) that is our deepest inner refraction of the Tao and the aspect of the Tao to be followed above all others. True Will is the inner core of our harmony with the cosmos, and this will is to be followed no matter what resistance is met with socially, politically, and even biologically.

The alchemists seemed to know what was at stake, and how deep into the rabbit hole they really had to go to regain their freedom and original wholeness. To break free of the matrix they first had to break down existing structures, to regain the “prima materia” out of which structures are created. Mixing alchemical and computer metaphors, this would be a cauldron of zeros and ones, undifferentiated potential for informational or psychic structure. Psychologically/spiritually this requires the dark night of the soul which some, in both tribal and modern contexts, seek to bring on with the use of ordeal poisons and/or hallucinogens.


A triptych entitled The Journey of the Wounded Healer in Alex Grey’s visionary book, Sacred Mirrors, illustrates this process. We see a healer or potential shaman ascending a mountain. At one point he seems to be blown apart into a horrifically surreal explosion of body parts. This is a brilliant visual representation of the dark night of the soul (what the alchemists called the nigredo”), the death of an ego identity, the necessary destruction of structure to create new form. Some initiates voluntarily chose to bring this on by self-created initiations—–fasting and wilderness isolation, hallucinogens, etc. There are advantages to the self-initiated metamorphosis in that it is consciously chosen, but there are also grave dangers.

A few years ago a very enthusiastic young woman told me how she was involved in a new education program for kids that would involve “tribal initiations in the wilderness.” Although not wishing to deflate her enthusiasm, I felt forced to tell her that actually she was talking about arts and crafts in the woods, that tribal initiations were impossible for any legally constituted school in our society because you would have to be willing to have some initiates die or go insane.

Self-initiations must be dangerous. If the self-initiate is fortunate, the danger proves lethal to ego structures but allows other healthy tissue to survive and reconfigure. But many self-initiations, just as those induced by the tribal collective, are shattering to the body and/or sanity of the initiate. There is always the danger that the self-initiate has presumed upon their inner strength, and like the naïve, young hero ends up devoured.

Another form of initiation is not self-initiated but is induced by the shocks that life supplies. (see the last part, “Dealing with Shock,” of A Guide to the Perplexed Interdimensional Traveler) Shamans often have histories of medical emergencies and/or other brushes with death in their youth. Another form of shock that could induce initiation is love shock. Someone with a great inner potential for consciousness may seek wholeness in the conventional way— through infatuation with another incomplete human—and in the shattering aftermath may sacrifice an identity and become more whole. An outcome of wholeness, however, is relatively rare. The more likely course is that one seeks another love object or becomes a depressed version of the former self.

Alchemists are self-induced initiates and well aware of the depth, scope and acute peril of what they undertake. Their endeavor could aptly be described by Galadriel’s words to the Ring Fellowship: “Your quest rests upon the edge of a knife. Stray but a little and you will fall to the ruin of all.”

What follows are a number of interesting quotes from Singer’s exposition on androgyny and alchemy:

“Gnosticism is Mater Alchimica, the Mother of Alchemy.”

“There was thought to have existed before Creation a chaotic prime substance. This was referred to in alchemy as the prima materia.”

“The intent of the alchemists, or so many believed, was to gain control of the prime matter and recombine it so that they could fashion substances of their own choosing and design. In other words, they would initiate their own process of creation. …they admitted that their work was an opus contra naturam. In this monumental task they were forever inveighing against hubris. …”

“…each metal had a Masculine or Feminine association that corresponded with the planetary power: gold-sun-Masculine, silver-moon-Feminine, copper-Venus-Feminine, iron-Mars-Masculine…”

The alchemists worked in male/female pairs in a process referred to as the alchymical wedding”

“The crux of the process is the engagement with the prima materia, and this is symbolized in the problematic figure of “mercurious” in whom all things were supposedly combined. The opposites are present in him at the start of the process, but not yet differentiated.”

“Mercurius, also called Hermes, is not only the receptacle of the prima materia and the symbol for it, he is also the agent of transformation.”

“Mercurius is frequently depicted as an hermaphrodite, an image designed to reflect the nature of Divinity, which is ‘All in One.’ The mythical teacher Hermes Trimegistus, in revealing his secrets to Asclepius, says: ‘God has no name, or rather he has all names, since he is at once One and All. Infinitely rich with the fertility of both sexes, he is continuously bringing to birth all those things which he planned to create.’ The young healer god then asks: ‘What, you say that God has both sexes, Trismegistus?’ ‘Yes, Asclepius, and not God alone but all beings animate and vegetable.’”

“The elements with which the alchemists work are seen through the dark glass of symbol and metaphor as bipolar constructs: ‘Sun-moon,’ ‘sulfur-salt,’ ‘King-queen,’ ‘heaven-earth,’ ‘fire-water’ ‘living-dead,’ ‘open-occult’ and, of course, ‘Masculine-Feminine.’ The work on the soul is an integral, though not always stated or understood, part of the process. This means being able to commit oneself to the work, to put into a secondary space the purely personal and ego concerns (the psychological concomitant of the earth-centered world view) and to see oneself as part and parcel of the entire universe. The image to be held before one is that every act by every person has an effect on all, changing the delicate balance that keeps the universe in motion. Therefore, it was considered necessary by the alchemists to so conduct their work and their lives, which were really the same thing, as if the salvation of the world depended upon it.”

“The breaking down of substances into the prima materia would bring about the stage called the nigredo, which is characterized by the utter blackness of the original chaos. It is a period of destruction and despair, and it is absolutely essential to the process. It has its parallel in mystical literature as the ‘dark night of the soul’…akin to what is experienced by an individual as deep depression, either suffering a physical illness or beset by a dis-ease, a weariness of soul…The kind of healing they seek is what the word ‘healing’ essentially means; that is, ‘to be made whole’…The object of this stage was to bring about a condition where a new union could take place between opposites which have been broken down through the agency of operations personified in Mercurius.”

“From the Zohar (the classic Kabbalistic text) :…when they (the Masculine and the Feminine) unite, they look as if they were one body. From this we learn the Masculine by itself is like only one part of a body, and the Feminine also. But when they join together as a whole, then they appear as one real body.”

“….Therefore we know: what is only Masculine or only Feminine is called only part of the body. But no blessing rules over a faulty or incomplete thing, but only over a complete place, not one that is divided, for divided things cannot long endure or be blessed.”

The Gnostics and the Hindus, among others, saw the reality we experience as matrix or “Maya”—a deception or delusion. The awakened androgynous person is able to transcend this delusion:

“The Indians saw the world as a construct of the Great Goddess whom they call Maya, who measures out time and space, both in an important sense delusory.”

“…the embodied Self is freed from the enchantment of the flesh and passes into the sate of rapture known as samadhi.”

The paths of Kundalini Yoga, Tantra, T’ai Chi and Chi Gung are Eastern alchemical paths that open the possibility, for advanced initiates, to reconfigure themselves energetically and restore their lost androgyny:

“What is so strongly potent about Kundalini is the realization which it brings of the possibility for some individuals to come to a unity within themselves, a unity consisting of the interplay of energy and matter, the Feminine and the Masculine, the bodily experience and the spiritual experience. This path is difficult, arduous and demanding, but Kundalini Yoga offers one possibility for achieving one’s androgynous potential. It requires a rigidly ascetic discipline; it leads its adherents to the experience of our temporal world as illusory and of little value in comparison with the attainment of non-dual awareness of the ‘undivided Whole,’ the non-separability of the created and the Increate.”

“…the Buddhist Tantra stressed the androgynous being of the transformed, enlightened individual…”

The I Ching and Taoism are both centered on the principle of androgyny which is perfectly expressed in the T’ai chi symbol or yin-yang, where the Masculine (yang) and Feminine (yin) each contain their opposite and are dynamic parts of a unified whole. The sixty-four hexagrams of the I Ching are the sixty-four possible combinations of yin and yang lines into patterns of six. (for more on the I Ching see About I Ching)
Singer writes,

”If there were a ritual dance of the androgyne, T’ai chi as performed by this master could be that dance. It is neither a Masculine dance nor a Feminine dance. It has the strength and grace of both…The moving outward portion of the cycle belongs to the phase of the Masculine, Yang, the moving inward to the Feminine, Yin.”

“T’ai chi, the dance of life, can be done with the whole body, it can be turned into a work of calligraphy on a sheet of white paper, it can find its way into the art of painting, into music, into the cultivation of a garden, and into the act of love. Always it is the art of asymmetrical balancing, in which the flow between the opposites is so exquisitely smooth as to be almost indiscernible. The energy is never spent; it is always put forth and then drawn back. When the dancer stops he has more vitality than when he began.”

Singer discusses the two hemispheres of the brain, connected by a dense bundle of nerves, the corpus callosum, as parallel to the dual nature of human beings. In the following discussion, keep in mind as left and right are discussed that in right-handed people, the right hemisphere controls the left side of the body, the left hemisphere the right.

“In the early part of the present century, most brain research emphasized the superiority of the left hemisphere functions of the brain, primarily the intellectual, verbal, analytic capacities that tradition has associated with the Masculine mind.”

“In a study of the myth and symbolism of left and right, G. William Domhoff finds that the left is often the area of the taboo, the sacred, the unconscious, the Feminine, the intuitive and the dreamer.”

In Fritjof Capra’s book, The Web of Life, he emphasizes the dialectic of two great forces in nature—-the integrative and the self-assertive. Our society obviously idolizes the self-assertive tendency while more earth-based cultures emphasize the integrative. Singer discusses Arthur J. Deikman who seems to have had a similar conception,

“Arthur J. Deikman, in considering the infinite variety and rapid shifts of psychological and physiological states in an individual, concluded that there were two primary modes of organization: an ‘action’ mode and a ‘receptive’ mode. The action mode is the one that is organized to ‘manipulate the environment, while the receptive mode is organized around intake of the environment rather than manipulation.’ He points out the need for recognizing the relativity of the different modes, rather than assigning absolute primacy and validity to the one with which we are most familiar; namely, the ‘action’ mode.

Singer introduces Robert Ornstein’s research into the nature of consciousness,

“Ornstein expressed the view that it is the polarity and the integration of these two, the intellectual and the intuitive, that underlie some of the highest achievements of mankind.”

Singer and Ornstein would be the first to acknowledge that these two terms, intellectual and intuitive, are an oversimplification, but the need to efficiently language this distinction forces us into a certain degree of reduction. Recognizing this difficulty, Ornstein has prepared a chart to illustrate some of the ways the distinction between day-night, Masculine-Feminine consciousness has been understood by a variety of sources from the ancient to the modern:

A Tentative Dichotomy


Many Sources                                        Day                                  Night

Blackburn                                              Intellectual                          Sensuous

Oppenheimer                                         Time, History                      Eternity, Timelessness 

Deikman                                                Active                                   Receptive

Polanyi                                                   Explicit                                Tacit

Levy, Sperry                                           Analytic                               Gestalt

Domhoff                                                Right (side of body)             Left (side of body)

Many Sources                                        Left hemisphere                 Right hemisphere

Bogen                                                    Propositional                      Appositonal

Lee                                                         Lineal                                  Nonlineal

Luria                                                      Sequential                           Simultaneous

Semmes                                                 Focal                                   Diffuse

I Ching                                                  The Creative: heaven         The Receptive: earth
                                                            Masculine, Yang                Feminine, Yin

I Ching                                                  Light                                    Dark

I Ching                                                  Time                                    Space

I Ching                                                  Verbal                                  Spatial

Many Sources                                       Verbal                                  Spatial

Many Sources                                       Intellectual                          Intuitive

Vedanta                                                 Buddhi                                 Manas

Jung                                                      Causal                                  Acausal

Bacon                                                    Argument                             Experience

 This concludes Part I  Here is some of what we will discuss in Parts II and III:

What Becoming Androgynous Means on the Personal Level

One Sidedness Versus the Integrated View

An Androgynous Mind is a Generalist Mind

Androgyny and Auto-Eroticism

Locating the Godhead and the Monad

The Schizoid Split of Christianity

Why has so much Blood been Spilt in the Name of Christianity—A Question Few Christians Ask

Why Destroy the One Ring?

Breaking the Prime Commandment of the Matrix


Chthonic Phallic versus Solar Phallic


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