On the Internet it becomes especially important to see how we project our internal perceptions on to others. We do this in face to face reality all the time but in cyber space it becomes so easy we do it with utter abandon. The Internet is a place of pure projection. What is projection? It is another basic ego trick or way of manipulating reality that enables our ego to maintain its basic integrity or structure. The ego projects its assumptions, perceptions, judgments and even its own internal desires onto others. We do this all the time with our visual sight. We look at a mountain never realizing that we are projecting the image out there. We have this fantastic power which we use all the time. The image of the mountain is actually inside of our brain and if we put our fingers directly in front of our eyes to measure the height of a mountain or any image we will see how small the real image is. But we project like a giant motion picture projector. The image is actually on the film but we put our total attention on the screen.
Our internal reality behaves something like this. And it is one of the most basic ways the unconscious operates. On the internet we see this when people judge others. People very quickly judge others actions and words based on their own internal value systems and then they separate violently. When we see a person judging another as being unloving, aggressive, or dangerous most of the time these traits are more true of the person who is doing the judging then it is of the person being judged. We accuse others of things that are often more true of ourselves.
The fact is that we rarely see anyone very clearly because we are too busy projecting our own reality onto them. It is an old truth that what we cannot stand in another is often inside ourselves. Another way of saying this is that you are whatever disturbs you. If angry people push your button it is because of your own internal problem with anger. We really underestimate our own powers of consciousness and one of these vast powers is demonstrated quite clearly in our power to project our realities onto others.
In cyber space there is no real check or inhibition to this process. We have an internal feeling or reaction to someone based on something deep within our selves. But instead of looking into our own internal ego structure we project, like a karate chop, that reaction to others with our written words. And that virtual chop can hurt as much as any communication in the face to face world. It is one of the reasons why internet communications in email groups remains superficial. People have no idea of how to work on the level of communication that allows for checking out our perceptions and internal realities against others. The moment we begin to disagree with someone trouble start, and the separations begin. When we cannot look at that part of us that does the separating we will separate.