Volume 9.2: AION: Researches into the Phenomenology of the Self

Abstracts of the Collected Works of C.G. Jung
Volume 9.2: AION: Researches into the Phenomenology of the Self

000284 The ego. In: Jung, C., Collected Works of C. G. Jung, Vol. 9, Part 2. 2nd ed., Princeton University Press, 1968. 333 p. (p. 3-7).

The concepts of self and unconscious as related to the ego are described. The somatic and psychic bases of the ego are said to contain both conscious and unconscious factors. Three levels of content are posited in the unconscious: that which can be produced voluntarily (memory); that which cannot be produced voluntarily but can be produced involuntarily; and that which can never be produced. From earlier discussions it is inferred that the ego is the center of consciousness but not the center of the personality, since it is but a part of the personality and so contained within it. The center of the personality is more properly labeled as “the self.” The ego is viewed as arising from the continuous interplay of the person’s inner and outer experiences. Its characteristics are unique to each individual, but its elements are common to all individuals. Its ability to change and develop in each person over a period of time is discussed. Finally, the notion of the collective unconscious is introduced and described as a subdivision of the extraconscious content of the psyche.

000285 The shadow. In: Jung, C., Collected Works of C. G. Jung, Vol. 9, Part 2. 2nd ed., Princeton University Press, 1968. 333 p. (p. 8-10).

From the contents of the collective unconscious, present from the beginning of life, the most accessible of the archetypes, the shadow, is examined and contrasted with the archetypes of the animus and the anima. The shadow is described as composed of the dark elements of the personality, having an emotional and primitive nature which resists moral control. The most resistant elements are usually associated with certain emotionally toned projections; since projections are attached to external objects, it is unlikely that the individual involved in them will recognize their source within his own unconscious. In extreme cases of projection, the individual may become completely cut off from his environment and will live in a selfperpetuating world of illusion. It is noted, however, that the most intense projections arise not from the shadow, but from the animus in a woman or the anima in a man. Since these archetypes are of a gender opposite that of the conscious individual their projections are even more difficult to recognize than those of the shadow, which represents primarily the personal unconscious.

000286 The syzygy: anima and animus. In: Jung, C., Collected Works of C. G. Jung, Vol. 9, Part 2. 2nd ed., Princeton University Press, 1968. 333 p. (p. 11-22).

The nature of the animus/anima archetypes and of the projections arising from them are described. These archetypes from the collective unconscious, reincarnated in each child, are seen to combine with the early experience of the child with the opposite gender parent to create the mother imago in boys and the father imago in girls. Because of the opposite sex nature of animus/anima projections, they are almost impossible to recognize as emanating from one’s own psyche, whereas the shadow’s same sex projections are considered to be more easily identified. The difficulty of dissolving such projections is seen to reside in the nature of archetypes as elements of the collective unconscious; although the contents of the animus/anima can be integrated into the conscious, they themselves remain separate as constituents of basic psychic structure. It is noted that the realization of the shadow, which makes possible a recognition of the animus or anima, is the first stage of the analytic process; recognition is only considered possible through an individual’s relation to a partner and the formation of the quaternal marriage structure. This quaternion formed in the male of himself, his female partner, the transcendent anima, and the Wise Old Man archetype, and in the woman of herself, her male partner, the animus and the Chthonic Mother archetype, is noted to be the scheme for the structure of the self and for the structure of primitive society. 3 references.

000287 The self. In: Jung, C., Collected Works of C. G. Jung, Vol. 9, Part 2. 2nd ed., Princeton University Press, 1968. 333 p. (p. 23-35).

The self is defined in its relationship to the ego and the instincts, and the self’s striving for wholeness is related to the parallel striving of the collective unconscious for wholeness as typified in the mandala symbols and ultimately in the figure of Christ. It is explained that the self is motivated by the unconscious, whereas the ego exists in the conscious; as long as the two are in equilibrium, the personality is functioning normally. However, when the self is assimilated by the ego or the ego by the self, the result is inflation of either the unconscious or the conscious to the detriment of the total personality. The striving of these forces is seen in individuals as instincts or natural forces; the need for equilibrium between them is felt as a need for wholeness. This conflict is seen to be represented throughout history by the quaternity or mandala symbols which are valued because of their similarity to the God image, the ultimate unity; understanding of the mandala is felt to grow from experiential rather than intellectual processes. The self is the basis of all theories of unity, which are part of all religions. Insofar as Christian symbols no longer express what is now welling up from the unconscious, the value of Christianity in the modern world is seen to be meaningless and hollow. 2 references.

000288 Christ, a symbol of the self. In: Jung, C., Collected Works of C. G. Jung, Vol. 9, Part 2. 2nd ed., Princeton University Press, 1968 333 p. (p. 36-71).

The archetype of the self as expressed in the image of Christ, including their respective opposites of shadow and Antichrist, is discussed in a critical review of Scripture and of the writing of the Gnostics. Christ is seen as a symbol of the archetypal God image, whose descent to hell and resurrection have psychological equivalents in the integration of the collective unconscious, which plays an essential part in the psychic individuation process. However, while the original Christian God image appears to have included even the dark animal side of man, the Christ symbol lacks wholeness because of the exclusion of this “inferior” aspect of the personality and its extemalization in the form of the Antichrist. Christ, then, is an incomplete symbol of the self; to be whole the archetype must express both good and evil, the conscious as well as the unconscious. It is noted that in a pre-Manichaean Gnostic/Christian text dating from about A.D. 150, the equality of good and evil was recognized, and in fact creation as a whole was viewed as a structure of paired opposites (syzygies). A schema of the transcendental nature of Christ and the self is based upon a quaternion composed of opposites paired which apply to both; a similar quaternion illustrates the unity/opposition of good and evil, spiritual and material. Further analogies to the structure of Christian symbolism are found in alchemical texts and in psychological theory, particularly in regard to the impurity of the body and the opposing purity of the spirit. The distinction between the metaphysical and the psychological perspective in the study of the Christ image is emphasized. The psychological view is phenomenological; it is concerned with the description and analysis of archetypal images, not with their truth or falsehood as expressions of religious faith. It is in the psychological sense that Christ and the alchemical symbol of the lapis philosophorum may be identified as like symbolic expressions of the ideal wholeness of the self; the Christian concept of redemption is not devalued by this association, rather it is reinforced as an expression of the psychological imperative of reunion of opposites. It is felt that if this process is not realized by the individual and by civilization as a whole, world conflict will be the inevitable result. 31 references.

000289 The sign of the fishes. In: Jung, C., Collected Works of C. G. Jung, Vol. 9, Part 2. 2nd ed., Princeton University Press, 1968. 333 p. (p. 72-94).

Similarities between astrological and Christian symbolism are explored, with particular attention given to the historical evolution of the dual symbol of the fishes. The fish symbol is widely distributed throughout the mythologies and religions of ancient civilizations, especially in the Near and Middle East; however, suddenness of its activation in early Christian history is seen to have a more specific source in astrological symbolism. Christ was born under the sign of the Fishes, with the Sun in the sign of the Twins; the dual nature of both symbols is discussed as it relates to the Gnostic Cluist/Antichrist myth. Other significant points in astrological chronology are explored in terms of their associations with the Christian movement. In particular, the dates of conjunction of opposing planets, events associated with new beginnings, are seen to correspond to the founding of new and historically influential religious orders. These new religious movements are in turn examined for the psychological impulses underlying their beliefs ; the monastic Holy Ghost movement headed by Joachim, for example, is felt to be an expression of the vitalizing archetype of the spirit. This movement influenced some of the greatest religious and scientific theorists, but was elsewhere degraded and distorted by revolutionaries and anarchists in the antichristian era. The analysis of fish symbolism is resumed and related to the change in outlook which began with the Renaissance. In the astrological sense, whereas the age of the fishes is ruled by the conflict of opposite forces, the Aquarian age which follows it brings about the union of these opposites. The first fish is Christ, the second Antichrist, and the contact between them occurs at the time of the Renaissance; this contact of opposites (enantiodromia) is considered to have formed the spirit of the modem era. The Aquarian era of unification is yet to come in the third millennium. 24 references.

000290 The prophecies of Nostradamus. In: Jung, C., Collected Works of C. G. Jung, Vol. 9, Part 2. 2nd ed., Princeton University Press, 1968. 333 p. (p. 95-102).

The astrological prophecies made by Nostradamus in 1558 are considered in light of the accuracy in general of astrological prediction of historical and religious events. Nostradamus set the renovation of the age for the year 1792, which was in fact the year of the inception of the French Revolution’s new calendar. The French Revolution is seen as the culmination of the spiritual and social enantiodromia (contact of opposing forces) which began with the Renaissance, parallelling the dynamic relationship of Christ and Antichrist, and of the two fishes in astrological symbolism. Nostradamus’ identification of the evil forces as coming from the North and the good as existing in the South is associated with the symbolism of earlier Christian texts, and with the fact that Luther, who was commonly seen as the Antichrist, came from Northern Europe. For his prediction of future revolution and reformation, Nostradamus is considered the foremost spokesman of the antichristian age. 1 reference.

000291 The historical significance of the fish. In: Jung, C., Collected Works of C. G. Jung, Vol. 9, Part 2. 2nd ed., Princeton University Press, 1968. 333 p. (p. 103-117).

The history of the astrological fish and ram symbols are compared to Christian symbolism and examined in terms of their associations with psychological premises. The dualism of the fish symbol in particular corresponds to the dual nature of Christ as the God image; as the God image is an archetype of the dual self, any imbalance in its expression, such as the suppression of the concept of evil in late Christianity, results in a profound uneasiness in the psyche. The destruction of the God image in the modem world has thus set in motion the destruction of the human personality. A comparison is made between the Christian and astrological interpretations of the fishes. Fishes of astrology are seen as Christ and the Virgin Mother, for in the astrological legend one fish becomes two, representing a mother/son relationship. In the astrological myth, the mother is a danger to her son; this destructive interpretation is related to the dangers in Christ’s own childhood and the other Christian symbols and parables. The astrological characteristics of the fish are seen to contain the essential components of the Christian myth; however, no proof exists that Christian fish symbolism was derived from the zodiac, nor that the Christ/Antichrist polarity is causally related to the dualism of the Fishes. A more likely prototype for the Christ/fish symbol structure is considered to lie in pagan cults and myths. 8 references.

000292 The ambivalence of the fish symbol. In: Jung, C., Collected Works of C. G. Jung, Vol. 9, Part 2. 2nd ed., Princeton University Press, 1968. 333 p. (p. 118-125).

The dual symbol of the fish in astrological and Christian tradition is examined in its correspondences with psychic structure. The splitting of the monster who opposes God in early Jewish tradition into the two monsters Leviathan and Behemoth is compared to the doubling of the shadow figure in dreams: it is explained that in each case one of the forces in conflict — the God image or the conscious ego personality — is incomplete, necessitating that the dual symbol of the fish appears as well in ancient Middle Eastern symbolism, and is even found as an explicit symbol of the soul in Egyptian mythology. Another dual symbol, that of the North as source of evil and birthplace of God, traced through Arab, Babylonian and Mithraic texts, is discovered in Ezekiel’s vision of God. This symbolic coincidence of opposites, with the similar dualism of the fish and other symbols, is discussed in terms of the incongruity of late Christianity’s radical separation of the devil from God; the paradoxical symbolism of alchemy is seen as a more or less conscious compensation for this imbalance in the expression of the archetypal God image. 4 references.

000293 The fish in alchemy. 1. The medusa. In: Jung, C., Colleered Works of C. G. Jung, Vol. 9, Part 2. 2nd ed., Princeton University Press, 1968. 333 p. (p. 126-137).

The associations of the fish in alchemical, Christian and psychological symbolism are discussed. The fish in alchemical texts prior to the Ilth century is found to be identified with the lapis philosophorum, considered psychologically as a complex symbol of the self. Numerous references appear to the fish glowing from an inner fire of a dual nature represented both as the light of divine grace and as the fires of hell. This type of dualism is noted to have occurred frequently in medieval symbolism, but without any apparent awareness of the unity of opposing forces such a dual nature implies. An investigation of the complex network of archetypal symbols in alchemy reveals its close correspondence with the structure of the psyche; in particular, the unity of hell and God as the source of the world is seen to be parallel to the unified source of all disparate psychic operations, whether they are creative or destructive.

000294 The fish in alchemy. 2. The fish. In: Jung, C., Collected Works of C. G. Jung, Vol. 9, Part 2. 2nd ed., Princeton University Press, 1968. 333 p. (p. 137-145).

A distinction is drawn between the jelly fish in medieval symbolism and the alchemic cinedian fish with its relation to the lapis. Several texts concerning the nature of the fish are examined, the influence of the writings of Pliny is discussed, and the Messianic role attributed to it by Sir George Ripley is mentioned. To the alchemists the fish was a real fish of ancient times; it had legs and contained a dragon’s stone, a white gem that acts as a alexipharmic. Its dual nature is emphasized; sometimes it was represented as white and sometimes as black, and from this union of opposites its magical powers were derived. The fish supposedly lived in the center of the ocean, or the center of the spirit of the world. For the alchemists the ocean was a symbol for the unconscious, hence the fish can be seen as a symbol of the self and, therefore, also of God. The power of the fish is defined as giving to the one who ate it the knowledge of all things. In this sense, it is compared to the eucharist. 2 references.

000295 The fish in alchemy. 3. The fish symbol of the Cathars. In: Jung, C., Collected Works of C. G. Jung, Vol. 9, Part 2. 2nd ed., Princeton University Press, 1968. 333 p. (145-153).

In the writings of the Cathars, the symbol of the fish was used in conjunction with beliefs about creation, power and the devil. These beliefs are examined and related to astrological, alchemical and Christian interpretations surrounding the fish. The interpretations are seen as figures representing the birth of consciousness under the control of the fish. A comparison is made between St. Augustine’s interpretation of the multiplication of the loaves and fishes and the Cathars’ perception of the fish; the former interpreted the fishes as symbolizing Christ’s kingly and priestly power; the Cathars as the two ruling powers of Christ and devil. To the Cathars, it also meant that God knew and intended the enantiodromia of the world. The reappearance of the symbol of the fish in dreams, shown by means of a case study, illustrates the the unconscious “knowledge” of the individuation process and its historical symbolism.

000296 The alchemical interpretation of the fish. In: Jung, C., Collected Works of C. G. Jung, Vol. 9, Part 2. 2nd ed., Princeton University Press, 1968. 333 p. (p. 154-172).

The alchemical belief that the magical fish can be captured and used as a magnetic attraction to the prima materia is viewed as a secret doctrine rather than a chemical process. Since this doctrine could be taught, the alchemical symbols for the process represent two things: the chemical substance itself and the doctrine or theory of preparation. Analogies with the Holy Ghost archetype are discussed. From the writings of the alchemist Dorn, it is deduced that the arcane substance was the same whether it came from inside or outside of the seeker; hence it can be concluded that Dom recognized selfknowledge as the source of all other knowledge. The discussion turns to man’s limited knowledge of himself, explained by showing that the majority of man’s processes reside in the unconscious. The importance of Freud’s and Adler’s discoveries in this context are mentioned. It is felt that Freud delineated the elementary and Adler the final proof of these unconscious causal factors which are each person’s individual potential. As is evident from this study, for the alchemists and for the modem psychologists, the self is not part of the ego but part of the unconscious. Alchemy, then, is credited with being the foundation for modem scientific thinking.

000297 Background to the psychology of Christian alchemical symbolism. In: Jung, C., Collected Works of C. G. Jung, Vol. 9, Part 2. 2nd ed., Princeton University Press, 1968. 333 p. (p. 173-183).

The widening chasm between faith and knowledge is discussed and related to modem man’s reluctance to accept anything not based on objective fact. Scientific stress on objectivity and its neglect of the psyche until recently is contrasted with the Gnostic and alchemic recognition of the importance of the psyche and experiential knowledge. Modem man is perceived as scoffing at dogma which is based on faith and is subjective. It is noted that only’a short time ago most of the world was pagan, and that Christianity has little power left, since modern man does not accept such notions as the Virgin birth as easily as did man at the time of Christ. The danger inherent in destroying tradition and myths is explained, and its importance is emphasized; since myths are part of the unconscious, they act as a bridge between the conscious and unconscious. Christ, as a combination of God and man archetypes, is part of this bridge. The fish symbol supports the importance of dogma and subjective experience or acts as an antidote for the fractionalizing tendencies of the modern mind. The psychological concept of human wholeness or individualization is seen as a modem replacement for the symbol of the fish. I reference.

000298 Gnostic symbols of the self. In: Jung, C., Collected Works of C. G. Jung, Vol. 9, Part 2. 2nd ed., Princeton University Press, 1968. 333 p. (p. 184-221).

The concept of the fish caught by magnetic attraction is extended to the image of Christ, who exerts a magnetic attraction on the divine nature of man. Three symbols of the magnetic agent — water, the serpent, and the Logos — found in Gnostic texts are considered symbols of assimilation corresponding to the assimilation of the ego psyche and the supraordinate self (individuation) which is the ultimate goal of the psychotherapeutic process. This process of individuation is related to the practices of the Gnostics and the alchemists, in which their awareness of the unconscious was formulated to suit the character of the age in which they lived. Meister Eckhart likened changes in the God image to changes in human consciousness, since God represented for him the ideal wholeness of man. The unconscious was expressed by the Gnostics in symbols of the universal ground as the beginning or source of perfection. Symbols found in dreams and visions are compared with the Gnostic association of sexual symbolism with Christ; the interpretation of the vision of John (John 3:12), which incorporates typical dream symbols of the mountain, Christ, woman figure and copulation is presented. The marriage quatemion and the figure of the perfect man in Naassene symbolism are found to parallel early Christian symbolism; both are seen to be closely connected with psychic realities. Two specific examples of second century formulations of the psychological nature of the self, conceived under the influence of Christian thought, are found in the conception of the perfect and complete man, the Monad, in Monoimos, and in the description by Plotinus of the soul as a dynamic process of circling around a central point. The latter concept is related to the similar structure of the mandala image, and to the alchemical image of the arcane substance as the invisible piont which is the center of all things. The assimilation of Christ to similar symbols, such as the mustard seed or the hidden treasure, is not seen as a devaluation of Christ’s personality, but the desirable integration of Christ into the human psyche, and the resultant expansion of personality and consciousness. It is felt that the onesided rationalism of the modem world threatens this integration. 10 references.

000299 The structure and dynamics of the self. In: Jung, C., Collected Works of C. G. Jung, Vol. 9, Part 2. 2nd ed., Princeton University Press, 1968. 333 p. (p. 222-265).

A series of quatemions in ascending and descending arrangements are presented to show how similar symbols have been arranged by various philosophies and religions. Citing the Gnostics as among the first seekers of self-knowledge, and therefore as early psychologists, the idea of the importance of self-knowledge is traced historically. As self-knowledge seekers, the Gnostics were forerunners not only of psychological theory, but also of modern physiology and evolutionary theories. The symbols used to represent self-knowledge have varied but, as Freud has pointed out, the phallus as symbol becomes more important as sexuality is less valued. The snake and Paradise symbols, among many others, are discussed in their relationship to the structure of the self and the organization of symbols into circle and quaternion figures, the main quaternions being those of Anthropos and the shadow. Another quaternion is formed by the union of the four elements, producing the alchemical lapis. The numerous and varied arrangements of symbols used by the alchemists are listed: quaternions, pyramids, double pyramids, uroboros, and finally the rotundum. The beauty of such perfect geometric formulations graphically demonstrates the harmony of all existence. 13 references.

000300 Researches into the phenomenology of the self. Conclusion. In: Jung, C., Collected Works of C. G. Jung, Vol. 91 Part 2. 2nd ed., Princeton University Press, 1968. 333 p. (p. 266-269).

The purpose of the book, an exploration of the archetype of the self, is reiterated and its contents are summarized. An overview of the contents shows that the work began with an examination of the other archetypes that most affect the self, namely the shadow, the anima and the animus. A discussion of the positive and negative qualities of these archetypes follows. It is concluded that good and bad are relative and only meaningful when considered within the human sphere. The self is defined as the result of the union of these opposites and represents psychic totality. This unity is represented by the God image in religion. The Gnostics are credited with being among the first to seek systematically the symbols of the self, since they were ruled by their natural inner experiences.

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