Other Points of View
We started with the point of view of someone who looked at the box-frame and saw it as
a schematic representation of the self. Then, in Social Relationships and Virtues,
we began to examine how "changing places" with the box-frame is like
experiencing the position or perspective or feelings of another person, a way to have
empathy or compassion for them. Now you can step aside from both these positions and
imagine yourself as a third party observing an interaction between
two people, one of whom might be yourself.
Finally, you can try stepping back still farther to a position outside any system that is
represented by the room, thus becoming some sort of outside
observer. Explore these two additional points of view.
While this model explores the meanings we give all three axes of the human body, its special emphasis is the
front/back horizontal axis, with its connotations of interpersonal connection, mutual
respect, fairness and partnership. This is a corrective to models that over-emphasize
vertical hierarchy, extreme individualism, and mental abstraction.
1. Looking at the self interacting with another
Two people interacting; something is going
on between them. One of them is represented by a human figure, the
other by a model of a human figure (the box-frame). Both people are within
a situation or system (the room). As we look at this drawing we are halfway
between these people, so we can put ourselves in the position of either
(identify and empathize with them). Our point of view is outside their
relationship, but we are still inside the system; we share the same assumptions
and rules. More.
In the next drawing, our viewpoint is from outside the wall, outside
2. Looking at the self and the system
it is in from "outside"
As we have seen, the MetaSelf model uses the walls,
floor and ceiling of the room collectively to represent any system larger
than the self, such as a family, organization or nation. Taken on
the largest scale, however, the room is the entire natural universe. In
this case, the space beyond the room becomes the metaphorical location
of the many things we place "beyond space and time," which are
Figurative Meanings of the Space Outside the Room
Where souls go after death.
An imageless, unnameable God.
The domain of light.
The location of Platonic Forms, e.g., The Good.
The location of universals (as opposed to particulars).
Ultimate assumptions about reality.
Where our highest potential comes from.
Where the transpersonal Self dwells.
A Zen void or Buddhist spaciousness - all around us (as well as in us).
The Whole greater than the sum of all parts.
The buddha-self or observer-self.
The One as opposed to the many (Plotinus).
The Absolute (Hegel).
Alternate realities, other worlds.
Existential or atheist nothingness.
The Comprehensive (Karl Jaspers).
The eternal (e-ternal, not temporal).
What is "outside" our system and therefore cannot logically be
talked about or named at all (Gödel and Wittgenstein).
The unknown, The Mystery.