Rêverie on ‘Choice’ by Dominique Marguerite, Jungian Analyst
The word ‘choice’ comes from the same Indo-European root (Geus-) as does the word to ‘taste’. Somehow, ‘taste’ is closer to the deep meaning of ‘choice’ than ‘choice’ is. When I taste, I value, it is not a neutral experience: if I like what I taste, all is well and I am in harmony with who I am (those who know me know this is true). I am guided from within. Of course, I can be guided from within and be bewitched or possessed by a demon in the choice I made and what I ‘taste’ can be bitter or sour or even poisonous. Remember the story of the Golden Tree? The wives of one of the Emperors of India were jealous of his youngest and most beloved wife and, seeking her destruction, they convinced the emperor to send her away. When a choice ‘tastes’ bad, it is is against soul, fueled by emotion, and is born of a strong and unreflective urge or desire to act. In the end the envious wives will be banished.
At the beginning of story of The Golden Tree, the emperor banished his youngest wife because she had not born him a son. He made the wrong choice of sending her away before he could realize his deep love for her. He then dreamt of her and of an exquisitely beautiful golden tree and was filled with grief at her loss and longed to find her and the golden tree. He eventually decided that he himself would go to look for her and the tree. Through a series of unconscious choices and their consequences, he came to the right choice, his self-involvement, the choice with the deeper value. With self-involvement and conscious participation, the Self emerges when we are able to choose according to soul which guides choice with a felt benevolence. It is a similar benevolence that can guide choice when synchronicity happens. When two unrelated events are brought together in awareness by unexpected meaning, we can be quickened to conscious choice. In the story of the Golden Tree, it was when the banished wife joyfully gave birth that the Emperor dreamt of the Golden Tree and of his lost wife and came to understand his loss. We can accept the gift of synchronicity as the amulet of the golden tree with leaves of the thinnest gold and clusters of diamonds. And we even at times, like the emperor of our story, experience a strange certainty and trust the intuition that seems to come from nowhere and reach for the Golden Tree.
I am a Jungian analyst in the Southwest of the USA, in Marana, Arizona north of Tucson and on the West coast in Lake Oswego near Portland, Oregon