A Coaching Power Tool created by Josephine Sophie
(Life Coaching, INDIA)
Life has an abundance of evidence to show that wholeness is represented by polarities which are not mutually exclusive but an integral part of the whole. In other words, life in the form that we know cannot exist without the multitude of polarities that constitute it. To live is to also experience death as there can be no life without death; courage is only expressed when feeling of fear accompanies the courage. This principle of polarity departs significantly from the commonly expressed idea of opposition or conflict rather than wholeness. The idealism to cultivate one part of the whole and be rid of the other is the negation or denial of life itself. All of life exists because of the integration of polarities. Electricity is a simple metaphor of the last statement because you cannot have electricity without positive and negative poles as they are integral parts of the same system.
This paper or write-up addresses one endowment that man is blessed with but because of various reasons man has tended to develop or emphasises one polarity of that endowment and ignore or negate the other. This endowment is his intelligence whose polarities can be simplistically identified as, on the one hand, his ability to discriminate, reason, judge etc. and, on the other hand, emotions, intuition, relatedness etc. The former is represented by the Yin of Logos and the latter by the Yang of Eros.
In today’s corporate milieu there is a tendency to have a more exaggerated experience and expression of one polarity than of the other believing that it is more valued and then there is the antecedent of a schooling system that emphasises this same polarity . It does not imply that one has no experience of the other polarity but the wherewithal does not exists to tap into its potential and utilise it to tell us more about ourselves and make more wholesome decisions in life and relationships. Fixation and the importance given to one side does imply that the experience of the other, be it logos or eros, will be much less developed and a huge potential lies latent.
The coaching process allows one to differentiate and integrate the polarities that leads to the process of the integration of the individual and allowing him/her to understanding himself/herself better and combine the power of the mind and heart to make wiser choices. Without this integration, there is fixation and arrest, in general, and the lack of wholeness. Growth becomes limited rather than expansive.
Defining Logos and Eros
Logos is a certain quality in a man; it is a slice of the larger intellect which leads him to discriminate, to reason, to judge, to divide, to understand in a rationale or logical way. It is rendered more complete when one couples to it it’s complement or the other side of the ‘coin’ which is the intuitive concept of Eros; the Eros intellect is adept at relatedness, seeing things together, establishing relations between them, not judging things and taking an inclusive approach to things such as motivation, values, emotions etc.
Logos and Eros, are two opposites which are not in opposition. Logos is represented alchemically as Sol, the sun. Eros is represented as Luna, the moon. One rules the day, the other the night, again the opposites of day and night, light and darkness, come into play. That which we “know” is that which is exposed to the light of day and is called consciousness. That which we don’t know is that which is hidden in darkness and is called unconsciousness. These opposing principles, the Masculine Logos and the Feminine Eros, are not gender bound because in the real world, we experience males who appear to operate from the principle of Eros as well as women who operate from the principle of Logos. There are masculine women, and feminine men. This is important to note as otherwise, it becomes too difficult to even begin to approach understanding anything about the union of opposites and the relevance of the two in today’s context.
In Ancient Greek philosophy the writing of Heraclitus, a pre Socratic Greek Philosopher was the first place where the word logos was given special attention although Heraclitus seems to use the word with a meaning not significantly different from the way it was used in ordinary Greek of his time. For Heraclitus logos provided the link between rational discourse and the world’s rational structure.
According to Aristotle,
logos relates to the speech itself, in so far as it proves or seems to prove.
Logos was something more refined than the capacity to make private feelings public: it enables the human being to perform as no other animal can; it makes it possible for him to perceive and make clear to others through reasoned discourse the difference between what is advantageous and what is harmful, between what is just and what is unjust, and between what is good and what is evil.
In 1912, Carl Jung contrasted the critical and rational faculties of the masculine logos with the emotional, non-reason oriented and mythical elements of the female counterpart of eros. In Jung’s approach, logos vs eros can be represented as “science vs mysticism”, or “reason vs imagination” or “conscious activity vs the unconscious”.
By logos I meant discrimination, judgement, insight, and by Eros I meant the capacity to relate. I regarded both concepts as intuitive ideas which cannot be defined accurately or exhaustively. From the scientific point of view this is regrettable, but from a practical one, it has value, since the two concepts mark out a field of experience which it is equally difficult to define.