Excerpt About Human Potential

Limiting Our Conception of the Human Potential

If we limit our conception of the human potential to the conventional dimension of experience, as Kohut and most depth psychologists seem to do, then we are bound to come to the conclusion that human beings can never be totally autonomous narcissistically, that we will always need external sources of narcissistic support and supplies. This conception leaves out the truth that most genuine spiritual teachings of humankind have expressed: that there is such a thing as true and ultimate liberation. This liberation includes fundamental independence from external sources for one’s inner equilibrium. Reduction of the human potential to identification with mature, realistic object relations negates the phenomenon of the full realization of individuals like Buddha or Lao Tzu, who proclaimed full and absolute independence from others with respect to their sense of self, well-being, and inner equilibrium. More fundamentally, this model, like many others in depth psychology, excludes the most fundamental truth about the human spirit: that it is Being itself, completely independent from mind, psychic structure, or object relations.

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