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The Creation Myth and the Structure of Desire

This essay is a reflection on a few of the primary symbols from the biblical story of the Garden of Eden as seen through an archetypal lens. I focus on four specific symbols: God the Garden of Paradise/the Wilderness the Serpent the Forbidden Fruit, for which I will offer an archetypal analysis and psychological interpretation of the way in which they structure our unconscious creation myth. With any symbol it is important to keep in mind that it has both a subjective personal dimension and...

Modern Man in Search of a Soul

THE JUNGIAN BOOK CLUB NOVEMBER 2023 BOOK REVIEW written by Byron J. Gaist Carl Gustav Jung (1933) Modern Man in Search of a Soul Translated by W.S. Dell and Cary F. Baynes Published by Routledge, 2001, London and New York Taken together with his autobiography Memories, Dreams, Reflections (1962), his Two Essays on Analytical Psychology (1928), and the collective volume Man and His Symbols (1961), this book can be considered one of the seminal introductory texts on Jungian Analytical Psychology.  Anyone who wants a quick, well-written...

Eating Disorders as an Addiction to Perfection

“The individual may strive after perfection . . . but must suffer from the opposite of his intentions for the sake of his completeness.” Jung (1951) This article is based on Marion Woodman’s Addiction to Perfection and is a continuation of my previous article on the author: Psyche, Metaphor, Soma, with a specific focus on how disembodiment and the loss of the feminine principle engender the development and maintenance of eating disorders. Woodman, whose focus is on women whose food complex is bound...

Mercy! Possession by the Animus.

“Like the anima, the animus is a jealous lover.” G. Jung, CW7 ¶ 334 "The animus appears in many myths, not only as death, but also as a bandit and murderer, for example, as the knight Bluebeard, who murdered all his wives." - ~Marie-Louise Von Franz, Archetypal Dimensions of the Psyche, Page 280 I love you But I gotta stay true My morals got me on my knees I'm begging, please, stop playing games I don't know what this is 'Cause you got me good Just like you knew you...

Alchemical Active Imagination

In her book Alchemical Active Imagination, Marie Louise von Franz explores the work of Gerhard Dorn who was a doctor, natural philosopher, and alchemist. Dorn was a true alchemist in that he never allowed himself to get away from the fact of the real concrete body, he did not buy into the idea of a metaphysical or astral body but the real body. When the real body is treated properly, he believed that it would form the basis for the medicine...

Marion Woodman: Psyche, Metaphor, Soma

Introduction Internationally renowned Jungian analyst, mythopoetic author, and women’s movement figure Marion Woodman (1928-2018) was a pioneering analyst in the relationship between psyche and soma, crafting an embodied and feminist psycho-mythical path that sought to unify these two aspects of Self. [1] She examined the effects of patriarchal society and its repression of the feminine principle on the development of eating disorders, addiction, and our relationship to the body, and examined the psycho-spiritual dimension of woman’s oppression in a culture...

Consciousness: Articulating the Archimedean Point (part 2: metaconsciousness)

This is part two of Consciousness: Articulating the Archimedean Point. Click on this link to read Part 1 It is difficult to overemphasise this polarising dynamic of consciousness. Consciousness, for Jung, means consciousness of the opposites: ‘There is no consciousness without the discrimination of opposites’.[1] Jung’s preferred image here is the Ouroboros, an image of the opposites facing each other in conscious awareness, illustrating the birth of (meta) consciousness.  Against this Jung considered ‘involuntary one-sidedness, i.e., the inability to be anything but...

Consciousness: Articulating the Archimedean Point (Part 1)

I do not know whether it is desirable that consciousness should alter the eternal laws; I only know that occasionally it does alter them. (Jung, 1928/1966, ¶ 389) Consciousness is central to Jungian theory and application, both academically and clinically, this being the metaphorical Archimedean Point of the Jungian psyche[1], notwithstanding Jung’s perceived focus on the unconscious and the archetypal processes invoked by Jung to expand, amplify, and generally increase the vistas of the personality. Most importantly, for Jung a personality that...