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Archetypal Autism FAQ

Explaining Autism Mystery and Archetypes

by Steven Brier

What is Archetypal Autism?

Archetypal Autism is my term for the real cause of autism based on my quarter century, of 24/7 research as doctor/patient and witness/subject.

Autism arises from the direct and unmediated experience of what Jung called the Collective Unconscious, the world of archetypes or universal and powerful versions of life.

[Jungian lexicon: ]

Autists possess vulnerable ego structures not completely grounded in sensory reality for whatever reasons.

My own vulnerabilities included genetics, a bad birth delivery, and repressive parenting that drove me further inward.

My extreme introversion co-existed with awkward and improbable careers in finance and the arts, the success of which funded my last quarter century of research.

Where does the concept of Archetypal Autism come from?

Dr. Jung's century-ago concept emerged when analyzing the dreams of schizophrenic patients. Such dreams contained images and information outside of the experience of his patients. Taken together they revealed common patterns.

Luckily for me, I found Jung's map of the unconscious when I desperately needed it. His concepts first explained what no other shrink could, and became maps for reversing autism as an adult.

At the time I did not have a clue I had autism, in fact a special version, savant autism.

His description of archetypes matched my inner worlds: cold in all ways, impersonal, and later in dreams speaking in high flown, archaic, and stilted language.

Has anyone validated your findings?

Dr. Steven Katz has reviewed and vetted my research over the last year.

Who is Dr. Steven Katz?

He is a well-regarded psychiatrist I knew socially thirty years ago in New York when he was New York State Commissioner of Mental Health under the first Governor Cuomo. His full bio is about 50 pages long.

Selective career highlights: broken link:

How did you first experience archetypes?

Through thousands of dreams in the late 1980's, enabled by use of psychoactive drugs. Later I managed things through a slowly acquired mindfulness practice.

I didn't then know I was autistic, just miserable and estranged despite my dumb luck in making money in a couple of finance businesses.

Why dreams and why you?

How else would they communicate except through dreams? In my long-term desperation I intuitively accepted as true Freud's famous "dreams are the royal road to the unconscious." And that getting there might help me.

Why me? Why not me?

After failing to get help over the prior seven years from both talk therapies and various alternative medicines I couldn't do worse.

How did you access dreams?

I kept myself awake with a table lamp next to my bed for four years and recorded many thousands of dreams. My dreams started simply as normal dreams. They evolved. First spoken messages ended some dreams, usually waking me up. The way they communicated and the language used correlated to Jung's description of archetypes.

Later dreams spelled words out one letter at a time like A U T I S M. Not the last life changing information.

More info broken link:


Which archetypes appeared in dreams?

Archetypal dreams are bigger than life and not recognized as such right away. Different types of dreams had different qualities: some were just dreams, others were special in ways difficult to describe. Startling. Demanding attention.

Over time, recurring images that possessed lightning specialness announced themselves. Sure sign those were direct archetypal interventions.

Coitus, illustration, 1628, Johann Daniel Mylius, from Anatomia Auri

Anima [Jung Lexicon] entered my life first in 1983 when I dreamt I was running across an icy field to save her from a burning house.

Over time Anima has taken many forms. Sometimes a black flowing robe. Other times playing roles wearing disguises meant to teach me but also that this was role playing.

As an archetype she is man's eternal mother and inner feminine and I know all of her behaviors in my dreams was designed to undo the ill effects of my original, absent maternal parenting.

Wise Old Man emerged in a dream in the late 1980's. I was seated in the front row at an outdoor theater watching a full Elizabethan, costumed performance of Shakespeare's Othello. I watched passively staring, taking for granted I should be in awe of Shakespeare.

Then a robed, white haired, character actor emerged and moved out from his background role. He looked straight into my eyes kindly, smiling slightly. He winked at me twice. I was shocked.

That was the first appearance of my Wise Old Man archetype, who has since been a constant guide, fulfilling his role as the eternal image of "meaning" or "spirit": magician, master, teacher, moralist, like Obi-Wan Kenobi of Star Wars.

How did you develop a mindfulness practice from dreams?

My savant brain had limited options after I struck out with meditation retreats.

Dreams guided me toward a mindfulness meditation practice suitable for my savant mind.

See broken link:

How did your correlate Archetypes to autism?

Tough question. The critical tool was my special kind of brain and mindfulness practice.

Understand when starting I had no sensory functions, only a photographic memory and an improving, finely-tuned, pattern-recognizing intuition.

In the first few years my intuition found patterns in my mental photographs. As I acquired sensation and feeling there were many more types of data.

Dreams were recorded as they took place and patterns were sought between dreams and my evolving ability to experience the physical world.

States of mind were documented: what and when they happened, what caused them, when did they form meaningful patterns (vs. illusory patterns.)

Archetypal patterns of perceptions were moving targets:

– First they were just photographs (the only thing my savant brain could do);

– Then came extremely disorienting sensory recoveries which colored all events forward and backward;

– Then came withdrawal of what I can only call colored or idealized archetypal perceptions;

– I repeat the word 'eternalized' as a most accurate word (not a typo, not externalized);

– 'Eternalized' is the single most identifiable archetypal characteristic carrying a timeless, eternal, all or none quality;

– Over the years, in lockstep with recovering sensory and motor functions, the frequency of Eternalizing or idealizing moments dissolved to nothing.

Archetypal intrusions into sensory experiences went through the same process, as they distorted my basic experience of taste, touch, color, hearing, all sensations, all feelings. Their withdrawal granted me permission to live in the material human world.

How did Archetypes condition your behaviors?

My main experience of autism is me looking straight into an abyss, with no bottom, outside of time and space.

One move in any direction and I would drop right instantly into the black hole of the Collective Unconscious, that same time space continuum described by physicists (in other contexts).

My psychology on its own wanted to defend itself. It imported archetypal structures to avoid annihilation.

The best explanation was how similar it was to the defensive process called Stockholm Syndrome, where helpless prisoners or hostages identify with captors as a form of traumatic bonding. They internalize their captor. They become The Other.

I was a prisoner of eternity or archetypes. I'd internalized archetypal impulses and assumed their nature. I'd internalized the cosmic circle seen in nature, religious, and mystical works. Aboriginal wanderings, non man-made crop circles, and ways too numerous to detail.

I first saw circles in dreams. Then 'projected' it running around the Central Park reservoir in a trance state.

I left NYC and the reservoir then unconsciously drove and ran in circles with a larger circumference.

I ran 1,000 miles a year in an unseen circle fully digested only in retrospect after 20,000 miles and ran myself into a bad back out of my trance.

Every autistic behavior works exactly the same.

This sounds mystical, even far out, was Dr. Jung a mystic?

Dr. Jung was a Swiss psychologist and psychiatrist (1875–1961) who was very influential in psychiatry, the study of religion, literature, and related fields. He founded analytical psychology, created the concepts of the extraverted and the introverted personality (widely used as the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator), archetypes, the Collective Unconscious, and more.

What is the unconscious?

The unknown aspect of a person made of personal life experiences. Freud first proposed what has come to be known as the personal unconscious.

What is the Collective Unconscious?

It consists of non-personal, universal, and inherited tendencies, instincts, and drives called archetypes. These communicate or reveal themselves through dreams, myths, whispers, images, and synchronicities.

Jung believed these non-material abstract forms were the highest, most fundamental kind of reality as opposed to the material world known through the senses.

For Jung, the ego is the center of conscious identity, whereas the Self is the center of the total personality including consciousness, the unconscious, and the ego. The Self exists outside of time and space.

Symbol of the Self, Jung, archetypes diagram

Sounds confusing. How did you know what was going on?

When I started, I had no idea what I had until it was spelled out one letter at a time in a dream. From dreams I learned a mindfulness practice so I could watch myself as if I were watching someone else.

Symptoms and behaviors were sourced through thousands of dreams. One by one, a dream would emerge that would correspond in some way to a behavior or pattern of mine.

Dream images or messages corresponded to what was underneath or driving my behaviors. I collected literally thousands of evidences of such behaviors then mindfully placed them next to each other in my mind. This process made it possible to dissolve my autism behaviors.

I found two sources of my behaviors. One was my attempt to live in the real world. The other was hard, demanding eternal impulses or forms I could see in my behaviors and my evolving perceptions.

Autism is what I term a parallel world disorder.

What is a parallel world disorder?

A condition when someone is highly susceptible to influences from another dimension. It answered my original question to shrinks: "If I'm not here, where am I?"

None answered it. However a dream did: stating I was stuck "betwixt and between parallel worlds."

What is the multiverse?

A term coined in 1895 by the American philosopher and psychologist William James. It's the idea that many possible universes or parallel words can exist at the same time alongside the one you see. Some serious physicists believe they are a distinct possibility.

Parallel world disorders like autism are made possible by anyone who has weak ego boundaries and is susceptible to intrusions from other worlds

What are weak ego boundaries?

Ego boundaries are a theoretical construct that explains how people distinguish between themselves and others, and often between what is real and unreal.

Autistics have weak ego boundaries between themselves and Dr. Jung's Collective Unconscious or what he calls the ego and Self (see map above).

Jung's concept of ego and Self allowed me to navigate between the two. I was able to identify through dreams the source of my autism behaviors.

I could witness my autism behaviors were "acting out" internalized archetypal energies or forms.

What type of autism did you have?

I was born a savant autist, inherited from my father. My brain memorized and internalized everything seen or heard.

What is an autistic savant?

A condition where an otherwise autistic person has extraordinary abilities in fields like music and math. It goes under names such as idiot savant, savant syndrome, and savantism. [1]

I found my savant autism made sense with Jung's Psychological Types framework explained in the next question.

[1. ]

What are Jung's Psychological Types?

There are mental activities that orient consciousness: thinking, feeling, sensation (conscious perception), and intuition (unconscious perception; a sense of a situation's wholeness; includes dreams and telepathy).

These functions combine with the two basic attitudes, extraversion or introversion, to make personality types.

Thinking function tells the individual what something is. Sensation Function tells the individual that something is without labeling it and always operates in the present. Feeling Function allows the individual to prioritize what is important to them. Intuitive Function tells us the possibilities inherent in the future.

So how do Psychological Types explain savant autism?

My memory tried to do the work of absent feelings and sensations. It memorized and impersonated them out of my conscious awareness.

As I mindfully viewed this process I found that refusing to allow my memory to take pictures created the psychic space and permission for a regeneration of feelings and sensations.

What changed?

I finally gained mastery over my memorizing savant brain.

How did Psychological Types help you recover sensations and feelings?

First I was able to diagnose myself as a thinking intuitive type with no feelings or sensations at all.

My savant brain had to have figured out a way to live without thinking and sensation. Here is what it did. My photographic memory compensated by memorizing the feelings and sensations of others.

To solve this, I practiced long-term sensory deprivation for many years. I would literally starve one absent feeling or sensation at a time from their automatic reactions.

Withholding and witnessing my reactions unearthed their source from somewhere inside. Then somehow from within, they regenerated.

I figured a way to use my intuition and memory to recover sight, color vision, depth perception, hearing my real voice, taste, touch, feeling, sensation, and human authenticity.

See broken link:

How did you survive with no feelings or sensations?

With difficulty, solely by photographic memory and intuition. Everyday events were a guessing game in a world of senses where everyone else seemed to do things without thinking twice.

How did you acquire feelings and sensations?

It's hard to say but the first sensation I acquired was color vision with depth perception on June 8, 1994. (I will never forget it.) Seven years before, a dream image appeared that seemed to mirror what I sensed was similar shape in the attempted experience of sight. I witnessed this countless times in a mindful state of mind, watching myself and my experience.

I have since recovered all feeling, sensations using similar processes.

I have had the truly weird experience of having been both completely autistic and human in one lifetime. This perspective can only be described as a pisser.

What is the difference between autism and being fully human?

Life and living death.

What are the differences in time and space?

Archetypal time feels like no time, timeless. Space is unreal, like a fourth dimension.

What are the differences in daily activity?

As an autist I seemed to be looking into or projecting eternity or death on the next moment. I lived in perpetual anxiety and fear of annihilation.

As a human my mind is clear. I start and finish things. As an autist nothing is ever finished – everything is almost. Almostness is autism.

What is your experience of attention and dissociation?

Attention is pulled inward and away from the sensory world. Dissociation and mind-blindness are not "nowhere." Attention is pulled inward into a real world next door.

What is the inner experience of aphasia and echolalia?

I had "talking aphasia". My savant brain memorized speech without my awareness from birth. It heard and repeated words, mostly big words not conversational talk.

Underneath I could not speak with my real voice. I remember so very well the shock in 1986, the very first time I heard my real non-memorized voice. It took many years to make the transition to human speech with human meanings.

When I looked inside my voice with my mind's eye I saw the same timeless eternity.

What is the archetypal causes of staring, stimming, fixations, sameness needs, rages?

[ ]

Each behavior has the same origin. Fear of death and instant annihilation from direct contact with the Collective Unconscious.

I stared, stimmed, fixated, engaged in meaningless rituals for fear of instant annihilation.

I would do anything to avoid that. And I did.

Every autistic behavior is about avoidance of dropping into this other world. Autistic behaviors are rituals without apparent purpose and without end.

Every autistic ritual made is that person's reliving of the myth of Sisyphus, rolling a rock up a hill which then rolls right back down.

Why haven't you spoken out earlier?

I couldn't express my thoughts properly. I've spent most of my life until recently controlled by a savant brain, unconsciously impersonating whatever it saw or heard outside of my control or awareness.

Now what do you intend to do?

Create and re-create the methods, tools, and whatever to make it possible for others to extricate themselves from the parallel world of archetypes, which today we describe and label solely by outward behaviors.

Solving the outward behaviors without addressing the true cause of autism will remain long, expensive and very frustrating without creating whole people.

Understanding autism has remained a head scratching mystery despite hundreds of millions spent on research. No longer.

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About Steven Brier

With a family history of autism, his website [2] shares personal experience of a 25 year 24/7 journey into the inner world of autism.

This Holy Fool (I invite you to Google it if not familiar) [3] infiltrated autism's inner worlds using dreams, meditation and non-stop persistence. In the process overcoming every autistic impairment whether sensory, cognitive, etc, you know them all too well.

The scientific word is Neurogenesis. [4] All sensation and feeling were recovered one at a time, each taking about 5 or so years requiring 50-80 hours a week until complete regeneration of the entire impaired sensory system.

Autism Inside Out
A Practical Growth Company
Miami, FL USA

[2. Bio continues here: broken link: ]

[3. See ]

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