There are maps to help us get oriented within the world/reality and within ourselves. Wisdom traditions the world over have developed maps that describe the structure of the cosmos. When all of these maps are placed alongside one another, it becomes clear that each has arrived at similar basic structure, that each describes similar dimensions of reality and experience.
In the last, almost one hundred years, psychologists and developmental researchers and theorists have further helped to map different dimensions of the human psyche. Here too, there is great overlap.
One of the best collators of these many kinds of maps, maps of the cosmos and of the psyche, is Ken Wilbur. It is worth looking at any of his many books to see how these different maps relate to one another and illuminate different dimensions of reality.
Although we can get through life without a map or some kind of orienting guide posts, we can save ourselves a great deal of time and effort by looking at these maps so that we can begin to make some sense of where we are in the world and what is going on inside ourself.
Now, the map is not the territory, and a recipe for chocolate cake does not replace the experience of eating a slice of that same cake. However, to arrive at a beautifully moist and chocolatey cake without a recipe, may be a fun project, but it will take a very long time. And, you might want to eat that cake long before you discover the right map to get you there.
In this web site, I have described a number of maps. I have provided a rough outline, culled from my study of a number of wisdom traditions, of the basic structure of reality.
Drawing upon a number of psychological traditions including IFS, I have provided some mapping of our inner world.
Maps are useless if you don’t know how to read them. They are useless if you don’t use them to help you navigate your world. Along with these maps, there are injunctions, directions, practices that direct us to explore in a direct manner, the territory laid out by these maps. Unless we perform the injunctions, follow the recipe’s directions, we will never get to test the cake. If we do not perform the injunctions, we will never truly taste, experience the life described by these maps. Too often, we become preoccupied with the maps. We get caught up in intellectual mastery of the maps without ever performing the injunctions and really diving into reality. We never get to taste the cake or experience miraculous and wondrous reality in a direct and immersive manner.
So, these maps are powerful tools. They shed light on the wonderful and sometimes terrible mess of life. They bring hope that this mess is intelligible. If others can make sense of this mess, then so can we. Yahoo.
The psychological map that I am finding most simple and useful is Internal Family Systems.