the collective psyche

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Rigardo Lee

Senior Member
I'm reading a book these days and an expression came up. And I understood it as meaning: medieval Christians took off their thin veneer of religious sophistication and threw themselves into worldly joys for a prescribed length of time. Here I wonder what precisely does the red part mean? Does it mean they themselves allowed for a degree of insanity?


Context and Thoughts : Medieval Christianity certainly understood this dichotomy. For most of the year, it preached solemnity, order, restraint, fellowship, earnestness, a love of God and sexual decorum, and then on New Year’s Eve it opened the locks on the collective psyche and unleashed the festum fatuorum , the Feast of Fools. For four days, the world was turned on its head: members of the clergy would play dice on top of the altar, bray like donkeys instead of saying ‘Amen’,
 
  • Barque

    Banned
    Tamil
    It opened the locks on the collective psyche = It unlocked the collective psyche of the people and let their inner desire (to be less inhibited) come out.
     

    velisarius

    Senior Member
    British English (Sussex)
    thin veneer of religious sophistication
    It was hardly a thin veneer if they kept it up for most of the year. Once a year, (the institution of) mediaeval Christianity released the forces that had been kept under control the rest of the time. The collective psyche is the psyche of the group - in this case, the Christians. They shared deep beliefs and a way of life, and all this constituted their group or collective psyche. Like the individual psyche, the collective psyche may harbour repressed urges that from time to time need to find an outlet. The Church controlled the expression of the repressed urges by regularly allowing the Feast of Fools to take place and strictly forbidding such behaviour at other times.

    crossposted
     

    Rigardo Lee

    Senior Member
    It was hardly a thin veneer if they kept it up for most of the year. Once a year, (the institution of) mediaeval Christianity released the forces that had been kept under control the rest of the time. The collective psyche is the psyche of the group - in this case, the Christians. They shared deep beliefs and a way of life, and all this constituted their group or collective psyche. Like the individual psyche, the collective psyche may harbour repressed urges that from time to time need to find an outlet. The Church controlled the expression of the repressed urges by regularly allowing the Feast of Fools to take place and strictly forbidding such behaviour at other times.

    crossposted
    Omg. Perfect explanation. thx
     
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