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About the Book

Table of Contents

Part I

Part II

Part III

Part IV

Part V

Part VI

Part VII

Part VIII

     

Vol.9: The Flood: Local or Global?

PART  IV

 

WHAT'S IN A NAME?

 

TABLE OF CONTENTS

Introduction
Chapter 1.  Names as Different Societies have Viewed Them
Chapter 2.  Names as Scripture Views Them

 

Publishing History
1967  Doorway Paper No. 54, published privately by Arthur C, Custance
1979  Part IV in The Flood:Local or Global?, vol.9 in The Doorway Papers Series by Zondervan Publishing Company
1997  Arthur Custance Online Library (HTML)
2001  2nd Edition (HTML) (design revisions)

 

     pg 1 of  2     

It is one of the wonders of Scripture that
it can use our strangely variant ways of viewing reality
to make its own revelation clear
without in any way compromising the truth of what is being revealed.

 

INTRODUCTION

     A FEW YEARS ago a little girl was released from a mental institution in Chicago whose history is rather remarkable. (1)
     This little girl, Mary, was virtually an orphan. Her father had died soon after her birth, and her mother became melancholic and lost all interest in her child, failing to train her in any way whatever, and then died when Mary was three years old. Some relatives who took her were appalled by her antisocial behavior and homicidal attacks on other children. Finally, when the situation became desperate, Mary, now nine years old, was placed in the Sonia Shankman Orthogenic School in the University of Chicago.
     In this school Mary began to paint, and though initially she did so with a peculiar anxiety, for the first time in her life she came to enjoy something. Her first picture seemed to be almost an accident but she described it as herself and then added immediately, "It's just any girl. . . a girl without a name."   "Nameless" what a pathetic picture for a child to have of herself.
     Much later in her three-year period of treatment she began suddenly to recover under the patient and very loving care of the teachers. One day she said, quite spontaneously, "Let's start the world all over again." Then she changed the name by which they had been calling her and took a new name.
     To herself, the girl was no longer nameless. Nor had she the old name. In her child-like mind she was entirely a different personality and this required a new name. In an extraordinary way, as Bruno Bettelheim describes it, "she gave birth to herself as a new person in the form of an infant. This process was accompanied by a long series of drawings."
     Exactly what the nature of such a transformation is, it is difficult to say. What does stand out, and what is to be noted in the light of what follows in this paper, is that she not only spontaneously equated the possession of a name with the possession of personality but also felt that a new personality required a new name. Christian experience has some remarkable parallels here. . . .

1. Bettelheim, Bruno, "Schizophrenia, A Case Study," in Scientific American, April, 1952, p.32, 34. 

     pg.2 of 2     

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