A child starts off as a full being, a circle. As the child grows up, there are only square holes available in culture - and so the child is reshaped into a square, through training.
When you don’t use a muscle for a while, you lose the ability to flex it.
As the child grows into an adult, the missing pieces are felt as neurosis - a deep seated anxiety and depression (most people are familiar with these feelings) - a person suspects something is missing, but can’t quite put their finger on it. The extra pieces, a living part of ourselves, constantly want to to reform the square into a circle.
The problem is that now the square only knows itself as a square - an anxious, depressed, alienated square to be sure, but a proud square nonetheless! (and be wary to suggest otherwise!)
Occasionally a square will encounter it’s limits. Usually this is through an intense emotional shock - which cracks it wide open. And through this crack the missing pieces can enter and a reforming process can begin resulting in ineffable
“There is a crack, a crack in everything
That’s how the light gets in” - Leonard Cohen
It’s only when the new circle looks back at it’s life as a square that it realises what was missing.
“One has to consider what effect it would have on one to have to accept the fact that God was not the friendly guardian of kindergarten!” ? Marie-Louise von Franz
We are living in a time where more squares are becoming circles, and gaining the confidence, by speaking with other circles, that they are not in fact mad, as the squares perceive them to be. This confidence is what separates the ‘psychotic’ from the ‘mystic’ - it allows a person to swim in this new expanded conscious space, rather than drown.
“The psychotic drowns in the same waters in which the mystic swims with delight.” - Joseph Campbell