Who is a Part of your Cluster

For the last couple of nights I’ve been watching back-to-back episodes of Season 2 of Sense8

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I almost didn’t bother with Season 2,

even though I loved Season 1 and think the show is a fantastic sensory journey through the varied lands of being human,

because the span of time between seasons was so long that I couldn’t recall anything about the storylines of the multiple characters,

and when I first tried to watch the special which linked the seasons it all seemed like nonsense so I gave up after a few minutes of not understanding anything nor caring about anyone…

but I gave it another go months later and I’m glad I did…

in spite of the fact that I know the series has been cancelled and ends on a cliffhanger leaving lots of loose threads dangling. I don’t need to have things tied up in a neat bow… real life isn’t like that so why expect it of fantasy (maybe because in fantasy we seek to get what we don’t often get outside of it).

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Watching this series is unlike watching more mainstream types of shows, and the best way to view it is by suspending yourself in the moment, suspending disbelief, judgment, rationale, concepts about what reality is and isn’t, what can be done and what can’t be, who we are, who others are, and so on…

turn it on, tune into it, and drop out of the space you usually inhabit… go with the flow and see what the flow offers to you when you’re open to the whatever…

While immersed (yet also not immersed) in the last episode I saw last night – All I Want Right Now Is One More Bullet  – in one of the last scenes there was a visual effect wherein the 8 main characters merged into one…

this is regular feature of the series – all the 8 main characters are psychically linked and can lend their dominant abilities to the others even though they are separated by physical location… it can be confusing, but it’s done really well and becomes familiar and normal…

however none of the previous scenes where the characters merged did it in the manner it was shown in this scene, it was a beautifully choreographed dance of bodies and perspective…

and as I observed the story it occurred to me that what I was seeing was a visual representation of the psyche of each of us.

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creating a quiz like this for a show like Sense8 seems to go against the whole point of the story – the answer is you are all of them.

Funnily enough this is one of those rare shows where I don’t really relate to any one character… I feel detached from all of them… and yet I can see connections to each one – perhaps that’s the effect it’s supposed to have?

This image comes from this Buzzfeed quiz (expect it to be unsatisfying and superficial) if you want to take it. The very first question is problematic, so is the food one as all options didn’t appeal, but I took it anyway (while knowing which answer linked with which character) and ended up with this result – Nomi: “You often question what you are told to believe, knowing there are usually at least two sides to every story.”

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Carl Jung, and those who have continued his line of research, following in the footsteps of his philosophy as though they were members of his cluster, have described this as Archetypes…

A quick overview of the Archetypes can be found here – The 12 Common Archetypes By Carl Golden – please note that you are not limited to having one archetype, most of us have a cluster of them within us.

for those interested in Jung, this is a wonderful blog to explore – Applied Jung. Two articles I read recently are:

Have you swallowed another’s shadow? – which is worth reading is you’ve been or still are in a relationship with a narcissist or someone who is very narcissistic.

A short course in Wrestling an Angel – this is worth reading for those who like to challenge their mental muscles and concepts of internal reality

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it’s interesting to note that this series lacks a classic narcissist amongst its main characters (most shows have at least one if not several narcissists), it does have a classic psychopath. However one character, Nomi, does get accused of being a narcissist through word of mouth by her father who has warned his other daughter not to invite Nomi to her wedding as ‘she’ll make the event all about herself and her drama’ – sounds like the real narcissist is the person accusing his daughter of being what he is and of going to do what he is already doing.

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Astrologers use the planets in a natal chart… which are part of the cluster of you.

You’re not just the sign of the placement of your Sun, you’re also your rising sign/ascendant, your Mercury, Moon, Mars, Venus, etc, by sign, house, aspects, rulerships, et al.

Focus only on your Sun sign or someone else’s Sun sign and you’ll only be looking at one facet of a whole, judging, rating and trying to figure out yourself or another by their I colour without taking in the spectrum of the rest of the whole being (who is also connected to the whole of being of the rest of the world).

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Jonas and Whispers… neither is part of the main cluster of 8 but both have an important ‘parachute’ role – they drop in unannounced.

Whispers is the classic psychopath – when he’s not committing atrocities on the homo sensoriums, he’s boring everyone to death with his intellectual superiority. But he is serving his purpose of being the enemy which joins others together…

Jonas’ role is to make you sigh heavily whenever he turns up… he is both an ally and an enemy, the kind who whether he’s helping or hindering makes all the best laid plans need plan B’s, C’s and Omega’s

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Other personalities defining systems use whatever terms they’ve invented for their system, which always includes subtypes and other variations on the main type… the main type is never just on its own (unless the system is in its nascent stages or developed by someone who is trying to oversimplify what will always be complex and complicated).

This is an intriguing article about some rumbles going on in the jungle of psychology – Is Something Rotten in the State of Social Psychology via The British Psychological Society Digest Research. This article caught my attention because I’ve been reading a book which I found in my new home when I moved in which says similar things and was published in the 80’s.

Maybe those systems of personality aren’t as precise, reliable, and correct as we’ve been lead to view them as being, and those who know what’s going on in our minds and psyche… don’t know what they think and say they know…?

And people often refer to the diverse roles they have, play and adopt in their daily life – the me always has some version of a we. We are a cluster of roles… but most of us call this cluster me, I, myself, for the sake of simplicity, to not confuse ourselves or others.

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One of the things which struck me about the concept of the Sense8 cluster… was the similarities between the way the show expressed it and a regular game I used to play when I was a child.

I’m an only child…

who thinks most of the stereotypes of the ‘only child’ are theories expounded by those who weren’t only child children (if they were they hated being that way and thus view the scenario through a negative lens)…

and was the kind of only child who grew up without much in the way of input from other children. I spent a lot of time either socialising with adults (who really didn’t want to socialise with a child but not for the reasons they gave themselves and others for it) or by myself – other children were few and far between due to circumstances…

by the time I went to school I was too weird to ever integrate with my peers, and to ‘fit in’ I had to be a ‘chameleon’ of sorts…

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while these days I am definitely an INTP, ’twasn’t always thus… I used to test as an ‘F’ rather than a ‘T’, so this particular INTP is aware of ‘feelings’ from the inside out, they just no longer feel the need to make feelings (especially their feelings) an issue (especially with others) in quite the way they used to having come to the conclusion that feelings are akin to the weather of atoms.

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Never belonging or fitting in has its advantages… if you’re really stubbornly patient and live long enough…

Anyway this game I used to play all by myself… involved a cluster of imaginary friends…

but not the kind of imaginary friends which is usually imagined by people when you mention imaginary friends… these imaginary friends weren’t as consistent and constant as that… they were fluid, flexible, changed with the moment and the story which I was both telling and living in the gameplay.

Me and these imaginary friends switched places in a similar manner to the way the characters in Sense8 do – we shared our skills, and the one with the required skills for a task in the story took centre stage, dominated the scene, but would cede place the moment other abilities which someone else had were needed.

I knew I was imaging all of this and could switch it all off in an instant – if a real person entered the area, the show would be turned off – returning to reality in a blink of the inner eye.

I also didn’t think much of what I was doing, it was just a game, play, something I did to pass the lifetime (ie. the Summer holidays) when I wasn’t doing other things (expected to act in a role for others elsewhere). It never occurred to me that this would shape or form me, my approach, my attitude, my view of how people should maybe interact with each other. It was fantasy… and I was too young to realise how much power fantasy has over us.

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While watching Sense8 over the past couple of days… so much of it seems so normal to me… especially the acceptance of differences and the cooperation between different people…

and yet these things are depicted as ‘abnormal’, as difficult to accept and do, as signs of another species…

are they really or is this just the perspective of the minds who created it , their view of their own life stories, the world in which they live and how they see the world in which they live dealing with how they see themselves and their personal life stories…

for instance, the Lito story of coming out openly as gay, in a gay relationship and its impact on the ‘lie/life’ he had been living up until then, there’s a scene – season 2 episode 6: Isolated Above, Connected Below – at an LGBT event where he finally embraces who he is, admits to his fears of doing that, shares his true self and true love, and the crowd, his audience, in front of whom he’s doing it embrace him with their cheers for his brave act.

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My godfather was openly gay and openly in a committed gay relationship in the 1960’s… so for me personally, watching this scene, I just thought ‘why are we cheering and making such a big deal of something that is normal’. While I can be very thick, I’m not quite that thick and realise that what is normal to and for me… isn’t viewed that way by others, by society as a whole (which often goes out of its way to separate the whole), and those others make what is normal something abnormal which then means the abnormal must do what the abnormal must to to make their abnorm the norm too.

I grew up Boho… the Boho collective is accepting of the outcasts, the misfits, the challengers of the ‘norm’… if loves, embraces and welcomes all those who don’t fit in anywhere else… and while it can appear to be an idyllic community for those who feel rejected, exiled, excommunicated by ‘society’, a refuge and sanctuary for the wonderfully weird and awesomely awkward… it has its own parameters which can be just like ‘regular’ society if you cross them, try to rock the Boho boat…

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One of the main characters in Sense8 had a dramatic change which wasn’t scripted or part of the storyline. One actor replaced another who was fired for reasons not shared openly with the viewers – we’re just supposed to accept the change, pretend there is no change, not ask questions…

or expect anything other than Hollywood business as usual formulaic answers…

which would be fine for a regular show, but for this one which sees itself as being different, as being perhaps subversive, with the issues it raises and the fight is seems to be fighting…

I guess even the different aren’t that different from those they think they are different from…

the abnormal can be just the same as the normal… with similar rules, regulations and codes of conduct…

no matter who we are, to what cluster we belong and who is a part of that cluster…

we’re still excluding others and making separations in the whole to define ourselves one way or another…

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There was one character in the second season of the series whose appearance was fleeting, so brief it was almost not there at all, but which stood out for me… because of what they said (I’ve heard before and connected to it), but you can’t find them by searching online for quotes from the show, or in gifs and clips of it as those tend to reflect what is popular, what hits a nerve for the many…

and what this character said is not a popular thing to say (and the character they said it to kind of dismissed it, didn’t understand it, soon forgot it… because humans are humans even if they’re a new species of homo… one that senses beyond the usual sense)…

What do you think that fleeting and almost not even there character said?

And…

would they be a part of your cluster?

Who is a part of your cluster… do you know who is a part of you, and do you accept them or reject them?

 

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