In talking to a friend recently, the topic of Donald Trump came up. My friend expressed that she does not see Trump as representing anything good, that he is manipulative, sexist, racist, and a narcissist.
This is my reply to her inviting a deeper investigation, not so much on the character of Trump, but about what he represents and reflects about each of us.
It has been fascinating for me to witness, these past 6 years or so, how Donald Trump has become the embodiment of so many people’s hate, and they see him and his supporters as everything that is wrong in America.
You say that you see him as a “manipulative, sexist, racist, narcissist.” I invite you first to investigate if these labels are even really true once you look beyond the media’s lies. You can look for yourself, for instance, if he actually has done or said anything truly racist.
I wouldn’t say this to most people – but I know that you are genuine and sincere in working on yourself. I don’t mean to accuse you, but offer you a chance to see Trump in a different way – a more empowering and liberating way.
I invite you to look honestly within yourself and see if perhaps he doesn’t trigger you because he reflects things to you that you struggle with in yourself and in your relationship with men that are similar to him.
I have perceived that many people who hate Trump are really fighting their own shadow, which they are projecting onto him. He becomes the convenient scapegoat upon which they can throw all the world’s problems upon and externalize their own issues.
In psychology, the shadow is those parts of ourselves we repress, deny, ignore, or push out of consciousness because they do not correspond to how we believe we should be.
I see Donald Trump as having the unique experience of becoming the physical embodiment of millions of people’s personal shadows and also a collective shadow in humanity.
Remember that when you point your finger at someone, you also have three of your own fingers pointing back at you.
Over the past few years, we have seen many people vehemently pointing their fingers at Donald Trump. But they are unwilling to recognize that the very fact that they reacted so strongly and emotionally to him reveals that he is only an external proxy of their own issues.
Many people hate him because he reflects their own narcissism, their own selfishness, and ego. But they won’t acknowledge it within themselves, so they safely project it on him as someone “other” that they can hate.
He also represents that old-fashioned masculine archetype. Many people who have issues with masculine energy and father-like men in their life see that in him, and he becomes a convenient energetic punching bag for what they feel towards people representing similar masculine energy in their life
In America and even around the world, there is currently a war against men, a war against masculinity. You hear a lot of people who don’t even know what true masculinity is talking about “toxic masculinity.”
This is a whole big topic that requires lengthy and nuanced discussion. But as a man, I feel it is vitally important that people recognize that there is no such thing as “toxic masculinity.”
There is either authentic, genuine, healthy masculinity – or there is pseudo-masculinity, false-masculinity. (Which is therefore not masculinity at all).
Many people are attempting to say masculinity itself is “toxic” – and this is deeply wrong. You see the effects of this line of thinking throughout our culture, and men are increasingly being encouraged into being spineless, effeminate, weaklings who are patted on the head for being “nice” and who are scared of acting on their masculine instincts for fear that it will upset someone.
Men are not allowed to express their masculine core – a core that is not something that can be tamed.
The way our modern society labels authentic masculinity as “toxic” not only cripples men but also destroys women and the feminine – which requires a healthy masculine to complement it. Think of the yin/yang balance in all things.
Trump is often given as an example of “toxic masculinity.” While I don’t feel that he is an example of the evolved, divine masculine – neither do I feel that he is “toxic.” I feel that he represents the typical masculinity of the 1950s with all its faults – and it is precisely this “old school” masculinity that triggers so many people.
Donald Trump could actually be a great teacher for many people about what it is they hate, what and who they can’t forgive, and where there is darkness and shadows within themselves they are unwilling to acknowledge and integrate.
If only they would realize that what they see outside of them embodied in that man only bothers them because something is not acknowledged and conscious within themselves.
It should also be noted that on the other side of the coin, there are people who project savior qualities on Trump and see him as a perfect idealized hero. These people are also similarly not seeing Trump for who he really is, but for who they want him to be. They are also enslaved by their projection of him, just as those who take the polar opposite position. All opposites are actually the same.
This message is what I would want everyone who hates or feels strong emotions about Donald Trump to hear. To give them the opportunity to use Trump as a mirror to see what is out of balance within themselves and integrate it.
To see if they can see Donald Trump as he is without our own prejudices and beliefs filtering our perception.
We may find that we have never really seen Donald Trump, we have only seen our own self reflected.
And this is true for all things in our life. Nothing is really about what appears in the outside world. Everything is a projection and a reflection of our relationship with ourselves – with our beliefs, emotions, and thoughts about ourselves and reality.
Nothing outside of you has the power to make you happy or sad. No thing and no person, no situation “out there” has any power to effect you in any way unless you choose to allow it.
If we could see Donald Trump in simplicity and nonreactivity.
Perhaps we would see a flawed human being doing their best in this challenging world.
We would see a man with a solid yet fragile ego that attempts to protect and aggrandize itself in every moment.
We would see someone who wants to be loved.
Perhaps we would see… our self.