My neighbor’s black and white cat, Beanie, knows no boundaries, at least not the ones we humans adhere to such as property lines, private home space and things like that. She climbs over fences without a care, enters a garage if the door is left open, or drinks out of the backyard birdbath. She is like the psyche: black and white, dark and light, combined and harmonized in one living being.
Like my neighbor’s cat, the psyche disregards arbitrary and societal boundaries. It does not accept the limits and rules our ego lives by, especially when those limits and rules are at odds with our true nature and calling. Our ego establishes edges, puts up fences, marks out territories, and the psyche walks, jumps and climbs right over them. We say, “This is who I am and all that I am,” and our psyche sends us a dream on little cats feet that says, “No you’re not. You’re also this, and this, and don’t forget about this.” The psyche does not respect the false limits and the distorting, disabling beliefs of our ego. If it did, we would tend not to grow.
Although the psyche has little patience for the false and too-limiting boundaries of our conscious mind, it is not a being without boundaries. Most animals establish and defend their territory. The psyche does as well. It has its own laws and rules by which it expects us to live. It embraces and encourages some attitudes and beliefs while closing the door to others. Over time we come to learn that happiness comes from knowing the domains of the psyche and honoring its dominion.