Carl Jung talked about this phenomena, he cried. Phenomenon, he… …described as retrogressive restoration of the persona. And so it’s a complicated idea, but basically what it means, is that sometimes you take a leap forward and you learn some things. But you can’t catalyze a new identity, so you try to go back and hide in your old identity. And that actually doesn’t work, because… Well, you- things have changed, and you’ve learned something, and that isn’t who you are anymore. And so, it’s like – you have to cut parts of yourself off in a destructive manner, to fit back into the person that you were. Now, what happens here is that Pinocchio escapes from this tyrannical situation, and undergoes this descent into Chaos; but he tries to go back home, he tries to go back to what he was. And he can’t do that anymore. His father isn’t at home anymore. And so… So when he goes home, he finds that there’s no home there. Now, this happens to people sometimes, and it’s often a shock to them. So, one of the things I’ve noticed about “Peter Pan”-type, (I’m gonna speak about men here, because I’ve observed it more in men), is that they often stay under the thumb of their father. And you think: “Well, why would someone do that?” Because it means, they’re subject to the tyrannical judgment of their father. They’re always concerned about what their father would think, or whether their father approves of them, and so forth. And you think: “Well, that’s gotta be an unpleasant place to be. Why would you do that?” One of the things that I’ve suggested to my clients and other people sometimes, is that… Here’s a weird little exercise that you can undertake, a little thought experiment. So – you have your parents, and of course your parents have friends who are about their age, and maybe some of them are people you only know peripherally. And I might ask you: “Well, do you care more about what your parents think, than you care about what these peripheral people, who know your parents think?” And then the answer to that is “well, of course”. And then, the question that arises out of that, is… “Why?” I mean, for someone else your parents are the peripheral people, and their parents are central. Like, why is it logical that your parents make… [your parents’] opinion makes any more difference to you, than the appearance- than the, uh… The opinion of some randomly selected people, who are approximately that age? Why is it the case, that you would consider that they would know more than someone else? I mean, I know they know you better, and fair enough, but that’s not the point. And then, another point there is, that to the degree that your parents’ opinion about you matters more than some randomly selected people of approximately the same age… Jung would say – well, you haven’t exactly separated out the “God image” from your parents. And so you’re still under that combination. It’s like… it’s a complicated thing to talk about, but think about the Harry Potter series. Harry has two sets of parents, right? He’s got the Dursley parents, and then he’s got these… like magical parents, that sort of float behind. And he should know the difference between them. They shouldn’t be one in the same – they’re not for him. And it’s like, well, you have your parents, and you have Nature and Culture as parents. And you shouldn’t be thinking that your parents are Nature and Culture as well. They shouldn’t have final dominion over you. [It] means that you’re not an individual yet, if that’s the case. Freud said for example, that no… “Noone could be a man, unless his father had died”. And Jung said: “Yes, but that death can take place symbolically”. Okay, so there’s that part of the idea.
And then another part of the idea is – – one of the times in your life, when you actually realize that you’re an individual, is when you’ll go and ask your parents something, and you realize they actually don’t know any more about… what you should do, than you do. And that sucks. And that’s partly why people are often willing to maintain a tyrant-slave relationship with their father. It’s like… On a one hand you have to be inferior in a relationship like that. You know, you’ve always got the Judge watching you, but on the other hand, there’s always someone who knows, what to do. There’s always someone standing between you and the Unknown, that you can go ask “What should I do?” Well, at some point you’ll realize, that the reason you can’t ask that anymore is because they actually don’t know any more than you do. And then – that’s a pain. Like, that… that is a symbolic death. That’s also when you establish a more individual relationship with your parents. It’s at that point, that you could conceivably start taking care of them instead of the reverse. And that’s a time that should come, but you have to let that image of perfection go. And that exposes you. Well, that’s what happens here. You know, Pinocchio goes home, and he wants things to be the way they were, and he wants to stay under the careful care of the benevolent father. But, that’s no longer possible, he’s past that point. And that’s why the father has disappeared. And so, Geppetto has gone off to look for Pinocchio, because he also needs his son. But… But in any case, the house is abandoned. And so then… We see inside the house, that everything’s covered with cobwebs and everything’s gone, and Pinocchio and the Cricket sit on the steps. And they’re very concerned. First of all, they wonder where he went. So they’re actually concerned that he’s gone. But they also don’t know what to do, because there’s just no going home. And so you know, that’s also the case, that once you hit a certain point in your development… Well, it’s the same thing we already talked about. The answers that you’re looking for, are not going to be found in your parents’ house. It’s as simple as that. Now, you could artificially maintain your dependency. But you know, if you do that for too long, things get pretty ugly. So you get pretty stale and, and… You know, you’re like bread, that’s been on the shelf for too long.