Trauma as a Crisis of Meaning
DOI link for Trauma as a Crisis of Meaning
Trauma as a Crisis of Meaning book
Extreme trauma shatters our sense of identity and undermines any beliefs we may have about the meaning of our place in the cosmos. According to Jung, “meaninglessness inhibits fullness of life,” whereas “meaning makes a great many things endurable——perhaps everything.” When the universe of meaning is broken apart by trauma, the trustworthiness of the self and the world is damaged or destroyed. When the trauma of violence overruns the ego’s defenses, we experience a deadening of the senses and a consequent inability to perceive any kind of meaning in readers' existence. Trauma locates the individual in the realm of liminality. The Latin word limen signifies a boundary, a threshold, a frontier, or an entrance. The threshold between two different modes of existence can be a highly transformative space. Turner describes the liminal state as a state at the margin, “betwixt and between,” in which one is bereft of familiar structures.