Yes, it's challenging to evolve and develop the area of Primal Theory. I'm pretty fascinated by it, and I believe if I hadn't had PTSD, there is no way I would have been interested in putting it together. I will get across this concept of status so that terms of reference can be cleaned up to bring understanding. I also appreciate your neutral curiosity in considering it.
What Janov stumbled across is huge. It starts to cross into all kind of fields and perspectives. Imagine VanWinkle coming out and saying, "post-flood is post-primal". Dennis clearly saw this and included RST on this site. Just this week I was reading about kundalini yoga, and unbelievably, there it is again: RST. Primal Theory.
Amazing stuff. And it goes on and on. Tying in primal theory to yoga? I wouldn't have even GUESSED that one.Our brain falls into cyclic neurotoxicity as a result of emotional repression of the fight/flight mechanism during early traumatic incidents or deprivations occurring in our infancy. Thus the neurotoxicity that is addressed in kundalini awakenings is the repressive mechanism built into our primary matrix (0-5 years development). This initial patterning becomes the template for ongoing emotional repression which interferes with the smooth running of our catecholamine "activating" neurons. (The Catecholamine metabolism proceeds from tyrosine, to DOPA, to dopamine to norepinephrine and then to epinephrine.)
Status is the "money" of transactions in human beings. It's how we are even able to relate to others. It's how we relate to our uncle Earnie and even our dog. To the kid wheeling by on his bike. Our therapist. Ourselves. It's our order of the social universe. It's so damn simple that it took me about 2 years to believe it. Now I see it everywhere. Maybe a new word is needed. The traditional meaning of "status" only touches on what it means. Integrating it into primal theory makes it clearer every day. I kind of get both dismayed and thrilled by having discovered it.
How could primal theory be involved with RST, codependency, family systems and status? I think ( for me) the movement into an upgrade primal theory was VanWinkle ( and she says nothing about sex differences and the "money" of status in human relationships). I was quite taken aback when I saw Dennis add it to this site. It's like an annoying fly in the ointment of what everyone already knows.
I liked what you said about "innate characteristics distorted by pain". This is what I believe I am after too. After noticing that people I used to know STOPPED CALLING in varying degrees as I got better and better, I really began to wonder what "invisible" communication is going on between people? How do they know? I mean I'm talking 20 people. I didn't have a fight with them or do much different...but they are different to me. Because I'm different. I'm far less neurotic.
I had been using my projected innate characteristics ...and RST'd them. Using EVERYONE who was around me. I didn't think or theorize. I just did it ( redirected).
Primal theory ( RST). RST is about codependency...and all of these innate characteristics held in me are simulatenously held outside of me, as I make my way towards "leaving home" ( Bradshaw, Homecoming). My family repeat got healed.
If you asked the people on the primal support group how they were in a blind spot, they would say to you what you've said to me. "What are you saying, we're working on the pain. What other people in this group and my therapists do are independent of that." And they are. But they are only going as far as the mirroring and society that THEY identify with. That THEY project over. Just as you and I do. This is the human being. Primal work CRACKS this open and allows pain to flow out and lower and higher brain to talk. RST shows how this occurs from conception to early infant life. That's the main part of it all. The whole POINT is that these defences are completely buried and facing them would be like sticking a sharp stick in your own eye. It isn't going to happen!
Talking about "society" as a place to wonder about how I'm doing...and others are doing....as far as healthy human interaction is a bit of an unearned leap in many cases I believe. Primal work is about social networks in a far far more intimate sense. And I believe VanWinkle. It's about slowly unravelling codependency ( the projections of primal pain). Seeking change at the "large group" level where suppressed primal pain has been an agent in forming that group might be projective.
I mean it is really all about me and my innate characteristics. I don't think a single human being, once he feels good ( balanced), believes he is in a mirroring position with all around him and society.
I just couldn't get into balance.....and thus I continued to "see" that I was projecting in a huge way. I still am. Just different and perhaps much much less.
The people who bring up status have done so in evolutionary terms
(things like attraction and mating). Guys like Keith Johnstone revolutionized theatre recognizing that status was the main event in human interactions. His Book "Impro" is now in many languages. It's a GREAT book ( here in Santiago it exists in Spanish).
Here's a guy who talks all day long about status in Improv theatre. Everything became more real when it was recognized. Just reading the first few pages will be enough to get what status is after and what is means...and how it would touch the deepest human emotions. And how it would be laced through codependency ( the root of primal theory).
I got beat up by hanging around feminized therapy circles for years and years NOT realizing the impact of codependency, status and primal theory.
It cost me the emergence of my deepest identity. Masculinity. Without PTSD I wouldn't have seen it.
And the detox from RST??? That was as about a brutal an experience as I can imagine ( now that I'm being kinder to myself).
Since RST isn't re-living, maybe that's where we are also coming into some strange territory.
Even if the whole picture doesn't emerge in our discussion, for me it is making me really think about where I've been and where I'm going in this primal work.
It's not that unusual for new ideas to create confusion. How many people would even begin to understand traditional primal theory? Most would think we are nuts.
I just found this review on the book. You're not the only one who would be scratching their head on the status thing. I certainly was...as was this person:
First of all, I have to admit that the first couple of sections are pretty dry. I had to struggle to get through the section on "Status" ... I was thinking to myself, why did people give this BORING book a good review?? ... I did consider that maybe it's because the man is British (I think), and so the style of writing and the type of humor is a little different than I'm used to.
However, when he gets around to talking about the story/narrative, suddenly there is a flash of brilliance and it all started to make sense ... basically he talks about just letting GO of the things that are inhibiting us, how to stop listening to the voice that is telling us NO all the time ... and, I don't know, there's just something very profound in the way that he discusses it - little insights here and there that are just, for lack of a better word, very MEANINGUL.
For example, he says, of parents and teachers who scold their children, to keep their undesirable 'creativeness' under wraps: "... when these children grow up, and perhaps crack up, then they'll find themselves in therapy groups where they'll be encouraged to say all the things that the teacher would have forbidden during school." SO TRUE. This is what all the group therapies in Psych hospitals do - try to bring back the creativeness of the child. Why do we limit it in the first place??