One very essential part of our journeys of self-exploration is to understand the underlying motivations that drive a lot of our behavior.
We have the freedom to pursuewhatever we desire, but we don’t have the freedom to choose that which we desire. Have you ever wondered why you want, feel, think and behave the way you do? By analyzing your unconscious mind, you can dig to the very roots of why you are the way you are.
Psychologist Carl Jung developed a human psyche theory of “archetypes” (from the Greek words archein, which means “original” and typos, which means “pattern, model or type”), and it was in this theory that he developed the notion that our minds used “universal images” that lead to distinct psychological behaviors. These behaviors were individually acquired but also inherited from the “collective unconscious” (e.g. past life experiences).
Jung proposed that apart from the Universal Self, Shadow, Anima, Animus and Persona archetypes, there were 12 other commonly found ones. Recently, scholar Dr. Carol S. Pearson and psychologist Dr. Hugh Marr developed a system of self-inquiry based on these universal Archetypes in order to help us find ourselves and transform our paths. Pearson and Marr named their method the Pearson-Marr Archetype Indicator® (PMAI).
When we begin to work with archetypes, we can access the meaning we associate with them fairly simply as these archetypes can be found in most Mythology and fantasy stories. Understanding these archetypal inner guides helps us to:
- Prepare for our journey of self-discovery by learning how to understand ourselves and our needs.
- Embark upon our quest by becoming initiated into the mysteries of the human psyche.
- Return to transform our lives as a result of claiming our uniqueness and personal power.
We all possess most of these archetypes, but some of them are more predominant within us than others. Below is a short outline of the Archetype that you tested for. Each archetype reveals its own values, traits and meanings, as well as the lesson that each guide is trying to teach you about yourself.
The Destroyer (or Rebel)
The Destroyer embodies repressed rage about structures that no longer serve life even when these structures are still supported by society or by our conscious choices. Although this archetype can be ruthless, it weeds the garden in ways that allow for new growth. The Destroyer is a paradoxical character whose destructiveness reflects the instinctual death drive and the inner fear of annihilation. As a fighter, the Destroyer tends to be careless of their own safety, and can sometimes put others in unnecessary danger as well. Their quest is to use their passion in a balanced way that will sustain them.
Shadow Side: The self-destructor. This will manifest itself in your life as the tendency to be prone to addictions, compulsions, or activities that undermine intimacy, job success, or self-esteem. The shadow side of the Destroyer tends to motivate a lot of emotional and physical abuse (domestic violence, murder, rape, suicide, etc.) when completely out of control.
Life Goal: Metamorphosis
Fear: Death, annihilation
Response to Problem: Destroy it, be destroyed by it
Life Task: Letting go, acceptance of mortality
Personal Gifts: Humility, metamorphosis, revolution, capacity to let go
Personal Pitfalls: Doing harm to self/others, out of control anger, terrorist tactics