Tuesday, July 5, 2011
Archetypal relationships: Hera & Zeus
Hades, Poseidon, and Zeus drew lots for their kingdoms. Zeus got the sky, Poseidon the seas, and Hades the underworld. They agreed to share the earth. Instead, Zeus dominated the earth and the humans who later inhabited it. The Romans knew Zeus as Jupiter.
Emotional Control System
The sense of self enables power, freedom, and dominance. Too little Zeus energy causes impotence or passive-aggression.
Zeus, Poseidon, and Hades were the "alpha" males of the Greek pantheon. Zeus men conform to society's rules. A Zeus man seeks a public identity - usually a career - that matches his inner sense of self-importance.
Zeus men are status-seekers. A Zeus man may use deception to create the appearance of success. He may sacrifice his subordinates. He may claim credit for another person's work. He may blame another person for his failures. As the sky god, Zeus saw in wide overviews. He didn't have his feet on the ground. Zeus men can be ungrounded, out of touch with reality. They believe in positive thinking. They tune out negative facts and feelings. E.g., employees say that a "reality distortion field" surrounds Steve Jobs. A Zeus man may work for years to achieve success, then find that it's not what he expected. He spends his life climbing a mountain, then realizes that he climbed the wrong mountain.
Zeus had sex with any beautiful woman he fancied - and paid the price with a jealous and vengeful wife. Zeus men keep mistresses. But Zeus men aren't great lovers. Their focus on power stunts their emotional maturity.
Hera was the wife of Zeus. She jealously and cruelly persecuted Zeus's lovers and their children. The Romans knew Hera as Juno.
Emotional Control System
Hera energy is about tradition, ritual, and ceremony.
A Hera woman's life purpose is to embody her culture's traditions. She uses awareness of the past to create group cohesion. She makes individuals feel they are part of a group by reminding them what the group did in the past.
Women who embody Hera often marry doctors, lawyers, or other successful men. But they don't really love their husbands. They love being a successful wife. Hera women love children who behave properly. But when their children don't fit their ideals, Hera women disconnect or even abandon their children. E.g., look at Nancy Reagan and her non-relationships with daughter Patti and son Ronnie. Too much Hera energy makes an individual a caricature of whom she thinks she is. Too little makes an individual not take anything seriously. Some women today reject Hera. They remember their mothers in the 1950s or 1960s, dependent and self-sacrificing. But pushing Hera into the shadow can cause a woman to feel emptiness, or incompleteness. Such a woman should consciously bring Hera's rituals into her life, in ways that don't betray her ideals.
To Hera women, sex is just part of marriage.
A Zeus-Hera marriage tempers power with tradition. A couple that successfully uses this energy increases their social status.
Zeus men see women as either marriageable - beautiful daughters of wealthy, prominent families - or women for sex (as basically just another kind of status symbol). They use marriage in their rise to power, e.g., marrying the boss's daughter. Once in power, they go for the beautiful young nymphs.
Hera women subscribe to wedding magazines. A Hera woman's wedding is the most important day of her life. A Hera woman may mistakenly marry an Apollo man. Apollo men aren't leaders. She'll push him into a CEO position in which he'll fail, when he would've been a successful vice-president. She'll ruin his career and then divorce him.
Under stress, Zeus and Hera becomes Dionysus. When "the going gets tough," a Zeus man or Hera woman loses emotional coldness and distance. A wounded, human side comes out. At best, he becomes a hero - and becomes sexy to women. She becomes a "real person"-and sexy to men. At worst, a Zeus man or a Hera woman becomes hysterical, or turns to another side of Dionysus-alcohol.
When safe, Zeus and Hera becomes Poseidon. They continue to be "alpha," but "lets their hair down" and show emotions.
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