Category Archives: philosophy

Maslow on Scott Pilgrim

Scott Pilgrim fights Gideon for love (Ramona Flowers), then for self-respect.

How does he reach the next level on Maslow’s pyramid and attain self-actualization?

After conquering Gideon, Scott must fight Nega Scott. This is the battle to confront and overcome his shadow.

Ultimately, Scott is successful in befriending his dark self. Having done so, he achieves Jungian individuation, integrating the two sides of his being.

Able to move forward with the woman of his dreams, Scott becomes a self-actualized pilgrim!

Harry Potter’s hero’s journey

Harry died for the greater good. When he realized that part of Voldemort existed within him, he had to risk his own life to eradicate it.

The hero must vanquish evil his own evil before conquering capital-E Evil! He must come to understand that the worst virus of all lives within himself.

Once the hero sacrifices his life for all others–Others–he will return willingly (if not, at first, reluctantly) . He returns to save the world and defeat the enemy of the world~

Leap of risk

What is the relation between risk and meaning?

Faith and meaning are perhaps more obviously related. Look no further than to religion to see the interplay between these: the faithful life is inherently meaningful.

Leaps of faith involve risk. In life, we are not always 100% certain. These situations especially call for faith–“going for it”, even though we might fail.

Operating under uncertainty is what risk is all about!

Eupsychia and self-actualization

Maslow defined Eupsychia as both a psychologically healthy culture and society.

Would a world of self-actualizers be like this utopia?

In Dostoevsky’s Crime and Punishment, main character Raskolnikov dreams of a hyper-individualistic culture. In this socioculture (or “culturiety”), each figure pursues their own morality. The dream ends with the collapse of society: it can’t be that everyone is their own ubermensch!

However, Eupsychia would presumably be more collaborative than Raskolnikov’s nightmare. People forge social contracts, defining a common ethics (law) based on intersubjective morality.

Perhaps Eupsychia consists in a kind of self-and-other-actualization. Self-actualization consists in becoming part of something greater than oneself, so perhaps it is sufficient. Still–in considering Nietzsche’s ubermensch who has overcome herd morality, along with Raskolnikov’s transgression–we must be mindful that the self actualizes for another.