There is no Jekyll, and no Hyde

I’m sure that ever since Robert Louis Stevenson’s Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde was published and entered our cultural memory, we’ve had this idea of a “dark side” that is separate and distinct from our personalities and yet lurking within us waiting to come out and strike. The problem with that concept, however, is that it is a faulty analysis of the human psyche and the self.

If we have a dark side, it is not at all separate from us. Such an idea is an arrogant denial, and is nonsense. There is no separate dark side, we are light and dark at once, and everything in between. They are all a part of our nature. We are not fundamentally evil, sinful monsters, but we are not fundamentally good or virtuous either, we are only capable of those things. And it’s very ethically chauvinistic to place the normal human as symbolic of light, when the human being is a union of light and darkness (ideally anyway). And it is of no use denying either the light or the dark side, for both are a part of each other.


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