In his book, POWER IN THE HELPING PROFESSIONS, Jungian psychiatrist Adolf Guggenbuhl discusses how therapists, teachers, and medical practitioners create polarities with clients and students when they take on the role of “knower.” Jungian analyst John R. Haule calls this polarization a “split archetype.”
A split archetype happens whenever we know “what is best” for our patient (or mother, father, student, friend, lover): “One of us is all-knowing and all-powerful, and the other is ignorant, neurotic and powerless.” In such a situation, no healing or creativity has the space to occur, because we’re mired in a fixed (stuck) position.
When we hold the unwavering stance of “the one who knows” we create a polarity. We give the other person something to defend or argue against.
Try teaching or coaching from a place beyond the archetype that I call “third space” in my book GETTING MESSY: A GUIDE TO TAKING RISKS AND OPENING THE IMAGINATION FOR TEACHERS, TRAINERS, COACHES, AND MENTORS. Click here to find Getting Messy on Amazon.