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Existential Kink: Unmask Your Shadow and Embrace Your Power (A method for getting what you want by getting off on what you don't)

por Carolyn Elliott PhD

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A smart, sexy guide to embracing the repressed, tabooed, and often unwanted aspects of ourselves so we can discover our inner power and finally live the life we deserve. "We always get exactly what we want; but often, though we may not be aware of it, what we most want is dark-very dark." Each of us has a dual nature: we are light (conscious) and dark (unconscious). The dark side of our personality-the "other," the shadow side-is made up of what we think is our primitive, primal, negative impulses-our "existential kink." Our existential kink also drives the dark or negative repeating patterns in our life: always choosing the abusive partner or boss, settling for less, thinking that we're undeserving, not worthy. But it also is the source of our greatest power. In Existential Kink, Carolyn Elliot, PhD, offers a truth-telling guide for bringing our shadow into the light. Inviting us to make conscious the unconscious, Elliot asks us to own the subconscious pleasure we get from the stuck, painful patterns of our existence. Existential Kink provides practical advice and meditations so we truly see our shadow side's "guilty pleasures," love and accept them, and integrate them into our whole being. By doing so, Elliot shows, we bring to life the raw, hot, glorious power we all have to get what we really want in our lives.… (mais)
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First read all the one star reviews. I agree with them all.
1. This book is a classic example of snake oil being sold as “self help” - « follow my secret method which only brilliant I discovered, and you too will be wealthy, in an amazing relationship, healthy and wise! »
2. Then you start reading the details and you see it’s just a mish-mash of other (wiser) people’s ideas. The high-falutin jargon mixed with quotes from great works of philosophy is used to obscure the total lack of logic and coherence of the author’s core arguments
3. The key insight the author has is just a cool branding twist to other people’s ideas - in this case « existential kink » which is in fact a great name, But since the author doesn’t really have any other original ideas beyond the brand, the book deteriorates into boring and mindless repetition. The whole thing could be said in a short magazine article, not a several hundred page book
4. At the very end (in this case in the FAQ chapter) the author admits that her amazing insight really only works on a very small subset of problems (things that are annoying but not really serious) and for the real issues in your life you need other techniques

I am glad I read this book because it did help me understand why I find New Age stuff so absolutely off-putting. On the one hand these authors claim their ideas have roots in ancient wisdom, in particular the ancient’s insight into the divine nature Of the world, something stripped from our culture by materialist science. But there is a profound difference between these ancients and their modern counterparts. Read the mythology of any culture in the world and you will see that they understood even the gods are neither omnipotent nor omniscient, and are at the mercy of forces far stronger and more ancient than they, namely fate and luck. New Age proponents, perhaps subconsciously under the influence of Abrahamic religions’ ideas of God’s will being absolute, believe that if I’m part of the divine forces of the universe, then my will is also all powerful.

This absolutely ridiculous idea comes to the fore in the two main arguments Elliot gives for why EK is so true and potent. First she states multiple times that we must enjoy the suffering in our life because we chose to leave the blissful cosmic gunk and be born into this world. The ancients never would be so arrogant to say they chose to be born—not even the gods of their myths chose to be created!

Her second core argument is that we always get what we want (remember our will is omnipotent). Hence if our lives suck it’s because unconsciously we get turned on by this suffering. Well guess what? The far wiser ancients understood that fate and luck are far more powerful than our will, and often people suffer who don’t deserve to and there isn’t one damn thing that they or anyone else can do about it.

Of course because that thought is just too unpleasant to contemplate, Dr, Elliot takes a truly twisted path by arguing that children born into war or abuse might be bhodivistas who chose to come to earth to absorb the the sufferings of our collective unconscious. Or alternatively she argues « “attitudes of self-pity, hopelessness, resentment, bitterness, while very understandable and also fun and satisfying to indulge in sometimes, are, alas, not magically efficacious in creating happy synchronicities and outcomes. » That quote is one of her honest to god answers to « why bad things happen to good people «l

So yes, perhaps jerking off to all your subconscious blocks that hold you back in life is not a bad thing to do. I can’t see that it would cause any harm. And she does admit in the end that you shouldn’t be jerking off to the pain of betrayal, death, war, disaster, disease and all the other really heavy and painful stuff in your life. However, since feeling hopeless about those doesn’t lead to « happy synchronicities » , when you’ve used other techniques to come to terms with all that, and feel less hopeless, she advices you should jerk off.

This is just a dumb book written by an obviously intelligent person. It’s also incredibly boring and painful to read. Follow Dr. Elliot’s advice, spare yourself the pain of reading this book, and instead read a hot, juicy, sexy novel instead. ( )
  aront | Oct 23, 2022 |
Carolyn Elliot is highly problematic and connected to a white supremacist group through her husband. I stopped reading cause while I’m all about depth psychology, magic, and kink, the book is just off. The people I was connected to who followed her closely ended up having a tendency to identify too much with the shadow and seemed very off balance.

If you read it, take it with a huge grain of salt and remember that just like Jung’s theories, this is just one person’s mythology. ( )
  MariekeCahill | Mar 8, 2022 |
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A smart, sexy guide to embracing the repressed, tabooed, and often unwanted aspects of ourselves so we can discover our inner power and finally live the life we deserve. "We always get exactly what we want; but often, though we may not be aware of it, what we most want is dark-very dark." Each of us has a dual nature: we are light (conscious) and dark (unconscious). The dark side of our personality-the "other," the shadow side-is made up of what we think is our primitive, primal, negative impulses-our "existential kink." Our existential kink also drives the dark or negative repeating patterns in our life: always choosing the abusive partner or boss, settling for less, thinking that we're undeserving, not worthy. But it also is the source of our greatest power. In Existential Kink, Carolyn Elliot, PhD, offers a truth-telling guide for bringing our shadow into the light. Inviting us to make conscious the unconscious, Elliot asks us to own the subconscious pleasure we get from the stuck, painful patterns of our existence. Existential Kink provides practical advice and meditations so we truly see our shadow side's "guilty pleasures," love and accept them, and integrate them into our whole being. By doing so, Elliot shows, we bring to life the raw, hot, glorious power we all have to get what we really want in our lives.

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