In terms of our consideration of self-realization, oral narcissism results from disturbance of the original equilibrium of the self, which we have termed primary self-realization. This corresponds to the initial phases of early development coinciding with Mahler's autistic and symbiotic stages, or Freud's oral stage of psychosexual development. We have termed it "oral narcissism" because of the predominance of oral needs and concerns... When oral narcissism is the dominant form for a particular individual, her narcissism telescopes all four forms, with the oral characteristic dominating the picture.
The Point of Existence, p. 383
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The obvious conclusion is that deprivation and conflictual object relations in the oral stage affected the child in such a way that he lost his inner core. Early experiences of frustration and abandonment, lack of attunement and adequate support, or intrusiveness and hostility, disrupt the integrity of the child's self in such a way that he loses his connection to his core. This loss of core is the specific narcissistic disruption... This inquiry takes the student back to his earliest experiences, especially with his mother. He finds himself dealing with his early life experiences, with the question of maternal care, with his real hunger and its frustrations, with his oral need for love, warmth, holding, and safety. He confronts the effects of early deprivation, physical and emotional abandonment, inattunement to his needs, and intrusiveness into his field of experience. He experiences the wounding the, the betrayal, the rage, the hunger, and finally the emptiness. It is a specific narcissistic emptiness, a gnawing and dry emptiness... This empty shell does not reveal itself until he goes deeper into understanding the hungry and empty self. Then he will experience himself as an empty bag, a flaccid, empty stomach sack.
The Point of Existence, p. 389
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The sense of wholeness means all dimensions of the self -- the conventional and the essential -- constitute one indivisible whole. We experience everything as Presence, including thoughts and feelings. We are a Presence coemergent with the body; the body feels like a part of this Presence. This is also true of images, feelings, and activities. At this level even the ego structures, with their images and object relations, are seen as part of this Presence. We are aware of these structures of internalized images but they appear as less luminous patterns within the overall Presence.
The Point of Existence, p. 393
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