Wednesday, November 9, 2016

Labyrinth insight into Human Nature - Mental Illness

Faced with obstacles, people retreat inwards as if perpetually stuck in their own bad trip. Director Jim Henson of Labyrinth has an unbelievable insight into human nature when confronted by our own inner demons. More astonishingly, director Henson's ability to translate that onto the big screen. The entire scene is a metaphor for how one approaches life and obstacles. People retreat inward, into our own little rooms or safe spaces; and in the short term it is comforting but eventually its not enough, it becomes claustrophobic, suffocating... And so these broken people become hoarders trying to bring the outside world into their little "rooms." Not quite grounded in reality and not quite able to bear the suffocation of their mental safe space - one foot in and one foot out. Watch the clip below to see this extraordinary insight into human nature. [2 minutes 46 seconds]

We are all aware of hoarders and homeless having mental illness but forgetting just how frighteningly close the average person gets to breaking point at various stages of hardship in life. There are also varying degrees of mental illness and all sorts of baggage (I say damage) outside of hoarding and living in isolation. We can hit a rough patch and never fully recover or life hands us a "bad trip" that we don't ever quite come down from... Maybe we are aware of our damage but feel hopeless to face it or maybe like a fish is unaware that it is in water - we are unaware of the the baggage we tug around on a daily basis or the possibility of a life free of such damage; the programming runs too deep. In this short clip from Labyrinth, Sara (the teenage girl) faced her Bad Trip, she wanted nothing more than to shut herself into her room and distract herself - to forget about the nightmare she was currently living in. And she could have so easily turned a blind eye to the fact that it wasn't real; that there was a bigger scarier world outside of that room, and there is no telling how long she could have remained in the comfort of that illusion. From the outside looking in, we see the bigger picture, the hoarders were the Sara's of the past whom the Goblin king had trapped in their own insecurities. That is why it is important to face our fears regularly, to overcome personal obstacles. On a scientific and self improvement level there is the importance of personal growth to avoid your personality being "set like plaster" [RECOMMENDED READ] where by 30 years old your personality "stabilizes... and will never soften again..." That's a fancy way of saying you stop learning and growing by the age of 30 due to not challenging and stretching your comfort zone as you get older. But overcoming personal obstacles goes beyond self improvement and personal growth, challenging our fears regularly is so much more important on a spiritual level... It gives us the ability, when faced with adversity or psychological harm, to come out unscathed, or at least with minimal damage. Go ahead and watch the clip again (you know you want to), I am still BLOWN AWAY at how much the director "gets it" but even more so at his artistic ability to translate such complex human emotion into a short 4 minute scene.

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