I love comedy and I think besides being one of the elements of life that makes it beautiful and fun, comedy can have a healing element. I don’t just mean that “laughter is the best medicine,” though it can boost the immune system and help us shift our focus in a positive direction. But it can do even more. It can help us heal our spirit by owning our personal and collective shadow.
On the personal level, laughing at our foibles is a healthy by-product of gentle and compassionate self-inventory. You’ll never see a narcissist laughing at himself. His use of “humor” is misuse. He projects his self-loathing onto others with toxic sarcasm.
If there were a non-toxic use of sarcasm what would it be? Satire. The deflation of the puffed-up collective shadow, which is expressed as individuals and organizations who seek to control and disempower. That in our collective mind which fears and so it angers, schemes, hates and harms while pretending moral superiority. In the cognitive dissonance of people who hate in the name of God and attempt to destroy democracy in the name of country lies a treasure trove of comic material. And that same rich source of comedy resides within our own disowned selves.
My favorite types of comedy are cerebral, whimsical, and cultural. Sometimes when ideas are taken to their logical extremes, the humor lies in the silliness of extreme. In the case of specious arguments put forth by haters, the humor lies in ridiculousness of the fallacious argument and the utter unreasonableness of the “reasoning.”
Comics of this ilk express archetypes: the Cerebral/Spiritual Healer who heals by pointing out cognitive dissonance, and the Merry Prankster, who essentially does the same thing but in a very different personal style: unpredictable, off center, slightly askew, and a bit outrageous. We can call on these inner archetypes to do to do our spiritual work. Our Cerebral Healer can help us identify limiting beliefs that run counter to love and happiness. And our Merry Prankster can deflate the arrogance of the Inner Judge that enforces those same bad ideas and help us claim the freedom to make better choices.
May we laugh ourselves sane and whole into the light of our wisdom.
May we laugh ourselves silly and wild into our creativity and joy.
May we laugh ourselves kind and caring.
May we find the oneness that we are by sharing laughter.
May we find the sweetness and poignancy of laughter even in times of grief and loss.
May we remember our shadow selves in times of success and allow this to keep us humble and grounded.
May we always be open to cosmic humor and divine paradox in the vast Intelligence we find it convenient to call God.
With all best wishes,