Primary Power

GlossaryI define as soul power, primary power or self-power the natural and non-abusive power of a basically sane human being. Primary power is the natural power that the sane child develops when allowed to grow into autonomy and self-reliance.

This is namely the case when the post-natal primary symbiosis between mother and child during the first eighteen months of the newborn was a positive experience for both mother and child, and when the mother can allow the infant to gradually grow into autonomy as the child widens his or her grasp and perception of the environment and thus gradually leaves the condition of primary narcissism.

The development of primary power is however inhibited when the primary symbiosis was impaired and/or the mother is narcissistically fixated and projects on the child an ancestor or living parent, so as to ‘incarnate’ in the child a fantasmatic split-self, thereby obstructing the child’s bioenergetic flow and the flowering of the child’s own individuality and intrinsic selfhood.

Soul Power, which I synonymously call Primary Power or Self-Power is a concept I have created to connote our original power, which is based upon innocence, and which is distinct from the harmful secondary powers or worldly powers, which are based upon knowledge, that profoundly mark our current society, and which are clearly violence-inducing, and in the long run damaging the human potential and natural human spirituality.

Developing soul power is conceptually linked to developing awareness of our intrinsic soul values that typically, and in the regular case, do not coincide with our accepted social values. So there is at the starting point an inner conflict, tension, or duality, between our soul values and our cherished and agreed-upon social values.

This inner conflict must not be silenced, but met with passive (and peaceful) awareness for this inner conflict is actually creative and brings about soul power in a way completely different from what fashionable life coaches such as Anthony Robbins are teaching and practicing, and what they use to call personal power.

By contrast, I denote as secondary powers the largely abusive powers that result from the fragmented, schizoid and overtly narcissistic mainstream lifestyle of our culture.

Different authors and scientists have given this dichotomy other names. Sigmund Freud and after him psychoanalysis as a whole speak of secondary drives, where I use the expression secondary power. Gary Zukav, author of the bestseller The Dancing Wu Li Masters, speaks of authentic power vs. external power.

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