Tuesday, 24 June 2008

Divided Self

In The Divided Self, R D Laing explains how we all exist in the world as beings, defined by others who carry a model of us in their heads, just as we carry models of them in our heads.
In later writings he often takes this to deeper levels, laboriously spelling out how 'A knows that B knows that A knows that B knows ....'! Our feelings and motivations derive very much from this condition of 'being in the world' in the sense of existing for others, who exist for us. Without this we suffer "ontological insecurity", a condition often expressed in terms of 'being dead' by people who are clearly still physically alive.


Perseus said...


(n) : the branch of metaphysics that addresses the nature or essential characteristics of being and of things that exist; the study of being qua being; the theory of a particular philosopher or school of thought concerning the fundamental types of entity in the universe.

Perseus said...

"They are playing a game.
They are playing at not playing a game.
If I show them I see they are, I shall break the rules and they will
punish me.
I must play their game, of not seeing I see the game"

Perseus said...

This is also called burying people alive. They relate to you in a way that is so foreign that you become an outsider or get confused.