voyage of discovery

Chinese charater for psyche

"The meaning of events is the way of salvation that you create.

The meaning of events comes from the life in this world that you create.

It is the mastery of this world and the assertion of your soul in this world."

Carl Gustav Jung (July 26, 1875 - June, 6 1961)

Science, symbology and spirit

Science is not, indeed, a perfect instrument, but it is a superior and indispensable one that works harm only when taken as an end in itself.

Scientific method must serve; it errs when it usurps a throne. Scientific method must be ready to serve all branches of science , because each, by reason of its insufficiency, has need of support from the others.

Science is a tool of the rational mind and with it more doors can be opened than with bare hands. Science is part and parcel of our knowledge and only obscures our insight when it holds that the understanding given by it is the only category there is.

The East has taught that understanding through life. We know this way only vaguely, as a mere shadowy sentiment culled from relgious terminology. This assertion may appear bold, perhaps, and is likely to be met with disbelief, but that is not surprising, considering how little is known about the relgious cultures of the East.

Moreover, the strangeness of the relgious cultures of the East is so arresting that our embarrassment as to how and where the Chinese world of thought might be joined to ours is quite understandable. When faced with this problem of grasping the ideas of the East, the usual mistake of Western man is like that of the student in Faust.

Misled by Satan, he contemptuously turns his back on science, and, carried away by Eastern mysticism, takes over yoga practices literally and becomes a pitiable imitator.

He abandons the one safe foundation of the rational mind, and loses himself in a mist of words and ideas which never would have originated in European brains, and which can never be profitably grafted upon them.

An ancient adept has said: "If the wrong man uses the right means, the right means work in the wrong way."

In reality, in such matters everything depends on the man and little or nothing on the method.

For the method is merely the path, the direction taken by a man.

The way a man acts is the true expression of his nature.

Commentary on the Secrets of the Golden Flower


Our discourse necessarily brings us to Christ, because Christ is the still living myth in the Abrahamic religions - Judaism, Christianity, Islam, Samaritanism, Druze, Rastafari, Mandaeism, and Babism.

Christ is our culture hero, who, regardless of his historical existence, embodies the myth of the Primordial Man, the mystic Adam.

It is Christ who resides in the center of the Christian mandala, who is the Lord of the Tetramorph, i.e., the four symbols of the evangelists, which are like the four columns of Christ' throne.

Christ is in us and we are in Christ.

The Kingdom of Christ is the pearl of great price, the treasure buried in the field, the grain of mustard seed which will become a great tree, and bring heaven to Earth.

As Christ is in us, so also is his heavenly kingdom.

This is in exact agreement with the empirical findings of psychology, that there is an ever present archetype of wholeness which may easily disappear from the purview of consciousness or may never be perceived at all until a consciousness illuminated by conversion recognizes it in the figure of Christ.

As a result of this anamnesis the original state of oneness with the image of God is restored.

It brings about an integration, a bridging of the split in the personality caused by the instincts striving apart in different and mutually contradictory directions.

The only time the split does not occur is when an individual is still legitimately unaware of his instinctual life as an animal as it is hidden behind the Veil.

It proves harmful and is impossible to endure when an artificial emotional subconsciousness - an emotional repression - no longer reflects the life of the instincts.

There can be no doubt that the original Christian conception of the imago Dei embodied in Christ meant an all embracing totality that even includes the animal side of man.

Nevertheless the Christ symbol lacks wholeness in the modern psychological sense, since it does not include the dark side of things but specifically excludes it in the form of an evil opponent - Satan.

So far as we can judge from experience, light and shadow are so evenly distributed in man's nature that his psychic totality appears in a somewhat murky light.

In the empirical self, light and shadow form a paradoxical unity.

In the Christian conceptualization the symbolic archetype is hopelessly split into two irreconcilable halves leading ultimately to a metaphysical dualism - the final separation of the Kingdom of God from the fiery world of the damned (here on Earth).

This inevitable opposition led very early to the doctrine of the two sons of God.

The elder, the left hand of God, was called Satanael.

The younger, the right hand of God, became Christ.

The ideal of spirituality striving for the heights was doomed to clash with the materialistic earthbound passion to conquer matter and master the Earth.

This change became visible at the time of the Renaissance, the age of Enlightenment, the 'rebirth', or born again, and it referred to the renewal of the Holy Spirit.

We know that this Holy Spirit was chiefly a mask; it was not the Holy Spirit of antiquity that was reborn but the Holy Spirit of Imperial Christianity, which had undergone strange pagan transformations, exchanging the heavenly goal for a worldly one.

No tree can grow to heaven until it's roots reach down to hell.

Although the attributes of Christ undoubtably mark him out as an embodiment of self, looked at from the psychological aspect of duality Christ corresponds to only the 'good' half of the symbolic archetype of self.

The anti-Christ, Satan, corresponds to the 'evil' half.

Both are Christian symbols, and they have the same meaning as the image of the Savior crucified between two thieves.

These symbol tells us that the progressive development and differentiation of consciousness leads to an ever more menacing awareness of the conflict of desires and involves nothing less than a crucifixion of the desires of the ego, its agonizing suspension between irreconcilable opposites.

The relative abolition of the desires of the ego affects only those supreme and ultimate decisions which confront us in situations where there are insoluble conflicts of duty.

The ego is a suffering bystander who decides nothing but must submit to a decision and surrender unconditionally.

Christ - a Symbol of Self


The intent of the scientific method is to discern an object of inquiry well enough to make accurate and correct true statements about the qualities of the object of inquiry.

Accurate true statements about the qualities of the object of inquiry can be verified by facts.

The object of inquiry is natural phenomenon.

To inquire into the essence of what has been observed is possible in natural science only where there is an Archimedean point outside.

For the psyche no such outside standpoint exists, since only the psyche can observe the psyche.

Great as the importance of faith, conviction and experience is for the individual and for collective life, psychology completes lacks the means to prove its validity in a scientific sense.

The word 'spirit' possesses such a wide range of application that it requires considerable effort to make clear to oneself all the things it can mean.

Some say 'spirit' is the principle that stands in opposition to matter.

By this we understand an immaterial substance or form of existence which on the highest and most universal level is called 'God.'

We imagine this immaterial substance also as the vehicle of psyche phenomena or even of life itself.

Others restrict spirit to certain psyche capacities or functions or qualities, such as the capacity to think and reason in contradistinction to the more psychical sentiments.

Here spirit means the sum total of all the phenomena of rational thought, or of the intellect, including the will, memory, imagination, creative power, and aspirations motivated by ideals.

Spirit has the further connotation as when we say that a individual is 'spirited,' meaning that he is versatile and full of ideas, with a brilliant, witty, and surprising turn of mind.

This special development in man's idea of spirit rests on the recognition that its invisible presence is a psychic phenomenon, ie., one's own spirit, and that this consists not only in uprushes of life but in formal contents too.

Among the first, the most prominent are the images and shadowy presentations that reside in our Latter Rain field of vision; among the second, thinking and reason, which organize the world of images.

In this way a transcendent spirit superimposed itself upon the original natural life spirit and even swung over to the opposite position, as though the latter were merely naturalistic.

The transcendent spirit became the cosmic principle of order and as such was given the name of ' God.' The corresponding development of spirit in the reverse took place under anti-Christian auspices is materialism.

The premise underlying this reaction is the exclusive certainty of the spirit's identity with psychic functions, whose dependence upon brain and metabolism became increasingly clear.

One had only to give the One Substance another name and call it 'matter', to produce the idea that the spirit was entirely dependent on nutrition and the environment, and whose highest form was the intellect and reason.

In view of the intimate connection that exists between certain psychic processes and their physical parallels we cannot very well accept the total immateriality of the psyche.

Although the idea of immateriality does not in itself exclude that of reality, popular opinion invariably associates reality with materiality.

Spirit and matter may well be forms of one and the same transcendental being.

The Phenomenology of Fairy Tales

Carl Jung speaks about Death

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