'Becoming a father'
|v Who was the real man behind the idealised father?|
|v Story: 'A man of principle'|
The story in review:
The relate- and analyse function
|v Story: 'Values; belches as first attempts at fathering myself?'|
Review of my own experiences
January 1945: the relate-, governing-, consistency- and support functions
October 1953: the self-control, consistency and remove functions
|v How do I deal with these things now? Working with bubbles and fruit juice|
Who was the real man behind the idealised father?
At the beginning of the quest I mentioned that I find clashes very interesting if one
wants to get to know oneself better. The stories have corroborated that idea. Up till now
my mother took up the first place in my stories, even when I thought when starting with a
particular story that it would be about my father. I wonder why I do not remember many
personal facts about my father. Perhaps because we never had a chance to really clash.
When he died I was left behind with a question. On account of the idealistic image I had
of him the question was unclear and I was only partly aware of it. This time I want to put
him at the centre in another attempt to illuminate his picture. Possibly more of the real
man will show through now.
A man of principle
'Certainly, father was a really positive and enthusiastic person with a keen sense of humour and an independent, critical mind. He had friends of every rank and station and being active in a variety of fields he was held in great respect. He could get very angry if somebody was wronged for he had a strong sense of justice. However, towards the end of his life he seemed very disillusioned and disappointed due to injustices which he experienced.
In the course of 1944 father had undergone two operations and had come home from the hospital with tuberculosis. The months before and around the liberation of Breda in October of that year he had been weak and vulnerable but thereafter he recuperated. It started with short walks and gradually he seemed to regain confidence in the future. Shortly after the liberation in October 1944 of the southern part of the Netherlands, the American Coca Cola company sought contact with lemonade manufacturers in the newly liberated region. They had the intention to build a big bottling plant in the centre of Brabant where they would produce the cola under licence, and they needed a manager. Father, like other colleagues, was invited for interview and seemed to be a serious candidate. He made inquiries and thus it became clear that the recipe with which he would have had to work was a secret and would remain so. He would have to produce something of which he would not know the quality of the composition. Later mother used to tell us that she tasted cola at that time but didn't like it. The parent company would deliver the basics which would be mixed with carbonated water, be bottled in the Dutch plant and be sold from there. He would get financial security for his family but lose his autonomy. Father and mother discussed whether they wanted this and said no on principle: they would not be able to work with a product of which the quality would be unknown to them. The financial security set against this apparently could not seduce them.
About the same time, at the time after the liberation when his health seemed to
improve, an important event took place.
Father knew that he was no longer able to take care of his family. Gradually his
illness grew worse. He became almost isolated from his many bridge, billiards and bowling
friends, from the contacts that go with his executive and social functions and from the
relations with clients. Except for mother, sister Barbara and doctor Houben he was also
literally without physical contacts because of the TB of which he by then knew that he
would slowly die. He knew that he would have to give up everything and leave his family in
an insecure situation.
|Skip this part just now?|
The story in review
|As I have been doing in the last two zines, I shall discuss each time one or more of the functions, which every process has at its disposal, from the place they have in my life. This time I shall put the (sub)process of relating and transferring or analysing at the centre. Especially when communication is under examination it is of great importance to study not only all aspects of Mercury but also every other related factor. I shall, in order to complete the picture of my relating and - in my case - transferring, briefly take a look at the sign of GEMINI and the 3rd phase. It is remarkable but not surprising that these two are also involved in the transits during the described events.|
Concise descriptions relevant to the story
Terms and symbols
To ask, listen, compare; in short: relating and transferring.
Mercury is the starting point and end of the process of relating, transferring or analysing. In my case, with Mercury before the Sun, the working of the function is more like an extrovert interrogative relating and transferring, than introvert attentive relating and analysing as is the case with Mercury following the Sun.
The chart of the process of my approach of the world (move the cursor over the figure)
indicates that I can actively employ the relate function in its fourth phase. The aspects
which the relate and transfer function makes connect it with Venus and three more
functions in the eighth and ninth phase of its own process. In short it amounts to this
that I, working together in unity with the attraction function and in a strong way
employing the presence function, continually relate my knowledge to new information and
exchange it in my environment. In exchange with the activate function I interpret, in a
later cycle of the process, my knowledge untill I develop understanding with which I, of
course in a still later cycle, can elaborate my choices in detail in interaction with the
Mercury or the relate function:
|- My extrovert relate and transfer function starts this process in
order to attain her goal to stake boundaries, with opening herself to information about
equivalence, that is to say, about the workings of social intercourse.
The potential of the function is amplified by the following connections:
|- MERCURY (primary), starting point and end of the process of
relating and transfering or analysing uses, with the 1st phase in AQUARIUS,
the Aquarius pattern.
Mercury is connected with other functions via the following aspects:
|In the MERCURY process the planets Venus (primary) and Saturn are located
in the 1st phase. That means that they participate actively in the
the relate and transfer process as a whole occupies itself with social equivalence (Aquarius);
for that purpose the support function is activated which in the 3rd phase initiates energetically (Aries);
for that the planet Venus is included, with which we come full circle.
The 3rd phase is already involved in the relate and analyse process.
The sign of Gemini refers in this process to Mercury from the 5th phase.
There are no planets in this phase.
|Above has been stated that Mercury (primary) for his function in the 4th
phase is being amplified by VENUS (primary) and SATURN;
the 4th phase, and the three functions, are in the sign of AQUARIUS;
that sign refers to the planet Venus, with which we come full circle.
that sign refers to the planet Saturn.
|Since the planet Mercury is primary in my birth chart, especially the 3rd
phase and the sign of Gemini are of interest for the overall image of relating and
transference. In case of a secondary Mercury I would have studied the 6th phase and
the sign of VIRGO more closely. In both the 6th phase and in the sign of
Virgo there is in my birth chart one planet so that both introvert factors can play an
active role in my life.
Belches as first attempts at fathering myself?
'Some time during the first weeks of my years of training at the public library I was
asked to fetch the books of Mrs X (the wife of the president of the library board).
"Do you mind calling at her house? It's not too far out of your way, is it?". I
did go there but afterwards I went to see the head librarian. I told her that I did not
want to do this in the future and why I did not want to do that. To my surprise she
reacted understandingly to my point of view although I had been rather nervous about
expressing it. I was never asked again.
Does this attitude reflect a principle? I feel in this a scent of father's principle of
equivalence of people. It is certainly not bad for a start and it still feels good.
There is a point on which I have always tried instinctively to act really out of principle and consequently. But often I fail to stick to that aim. When I catch myself using expressions like "That is a good portrait" or "The weather is beautiful", then I correct myself with an additional "... at least, I think so". I have wondered why I, although there is no general standard of quality or beauty, persistently make this type of mistake and just as persistently correct myself. I suppose it is a general custom with which I avoid the expression "I think it is a good portrait", or "I like this weather". But why do I, and most people around me, avoid these expressions? I think it is because it is not "proper" to give your personal opinion: "There she is again with her view". Naturally you mean it subjectively but hide yourself behind a more concealing, quasi objective and detached form as though you need to defend your subjective opinion while rather the opposite is applicable. I have been alert to this since I was a child but still, even now that I know that subjectivity is unavoidable and essential and that I certainly need not be ashamed of it, I catch myself regularly in the act. I still find "I find" and "my perception of ..." have a constrained sound, but I experience these forms as more open and less pedantic or nagging. On account of this I have tried to get better informed about the world of thought in which I grew up and about the use of is- and be- sentence structure [ note ].
Another word with which I try to be careful is "must".
Whenever others use it with me I react extremely negatively. It reminds me of mother's
attitude and coercive expressions when I was little.
Review of my own experiences
|Skip this part just now?|
|In order to illustrate the development of my process I need to use a
progression technique, namely the transit on the birth chart.
In doing so I anticipate the discussion of progression in time
in the structure-line. Waiting till this subject has been treated there would take too
long. Therefore this short explanation.
The progression of a process
The elucidating texts are for reasons of clarity placed on separate pages. With a click
on the appropriate figure they can be accessed.
The transits in Breda, January 1945:
The transits in Breda, October 1953:
|- MERCURY (primary) in the 4th phase in AQUARIUS,
received in that period
||- the SUN in the 3rd phase in CAPRICORN, received in that period a conjunct-transit aspect from the Northern Moonnode;|
|The other functions received in that period no long lasting transit
I should add here that the whole network of functions in the birth chart is involved with a transit. The extent of involvement depends on the precision and the directness of the connection within the network.
How do I deal with these things now? Working with bubbles and fruit juice
I am fully aware of my prepossession with respect to drinking cola. I never tested the
taste of cola. Once, when I wanted to unfasten a rusted door-lock, I bought a small bottle
and established that it is well suited for that purpose. Letting a dash of cola sink home
for a while does the trick. After that test I thought it unwise to expose my
stomach to it. Another reason why I never even tried it was, probably, that I always did
try to remain independent with respect to trends and suggestions like 'everybody does it
so why don't you?'. Why should I? This choice seems to be relatively unimportant in my
life, to serve mainly as a signal. I see not drinking cola especially as a (small)
memorial for father's decision on principle, that it expresses my loyalty to and
solidarity with my parents and at the same time looks like an attempt to go my own way,
free from the stream.
Yet, more than thirty years later a feeling of estrangement and of void had come to the
surface resulting in a crisis. It has been found necessary, after all, to look into the
principles by which I wanted to act and into my failure to do so. Either my basic
standpoint was lacking, or it had not disseminated into every remote corner of my
existence in order to be able to apply it in daily life. It has become clear to me now
that the basic standpoint indeed was present, but that I still had much to learn both
about their consequences and about these, hindering, vulnerabilities.
The reconstruction of events from long ago has given me a more realistic view of the
person behind the idealised father. By being forced to seriously ask myself how I stand in
the world I also got a more realistic view of myself and a better insight into the
development of my actual philosophy of life and standpoint. I have surprised myself.