Blog

Answer to Job, by C. G. Jung: book synopsis

Answer to Job was first published in 1952 in German and was included in Jung’s “Collected Works”, as part of volume 11. It was published in English in 1954. It is regarded as one of Jung’s most controversial works. In Answer to Job, Jung demonstrates his in-depth knowledge of the Bible; however, what makes the book remarkable is the fact that it is a personal and authentic exposition of the subject of human suffering as it relates to the Christian [...]

The desire – drive dissonance and why you can’t always get what you want.

Sigmund Freud[1]and the birth of psychoanalysis gave rise to the idea of a “drive” and “drive theory”, (in German “trieb” and “Triebtheorie”. )[2] A drive, in this sense, is a psychical phenomenon that represents an unconscious motivation or instinct[3] in the subject’s psychology. The two most prominent of these drives for Freud are Eros, the sexual creative drive, and Thanatos, the aggressive and destructive death drive (Toedestrieb).[4] An important feature, maybe the most essential characteristic of a drive, is [...]

The Grand Promise of Transformation

transfəˈmeɪʃ(ə)n, noun, a marked change in form, nature, or appearance. There is a major paradox in the personal growth movement. A critical fault line running down its centre. We are sold and often tempted by promises of transformation, but, critically, what we most want is to be authentic. Do you want to transform? If you do, it is worth thinking about what you trying to change. Your nature? Who you are? How you live in this world? Do you want to be better? Do you desire to change somehow to [...]

Love: an existential guide to healthy relationships

I travelled to Vienna during May to attend an Existential Summit on Love. Presented by the wonderful and charismatic Dr Alfried Längle, it was an insightful and deeply meaningful experience for me. I want to thank Dr. Leslee Brown for organising this very enriching experience. Existential Analysis is a very practical system with a lot of soul. The course contained soulful concepts and ideas as well as practical suggestions on how to implement these concepts in your relationship. In this [...]

A short course in Wrestling an Angel

The mistake is to think of angels as cherubs. They’re not. That was just the romantic imagination of renaissance art. A more accurate perspective of the angel, at least psychologically, is provided by the Old Testament story of Jacob, who wrestled with the Angel of the Lord. To put it plainly, the angel fucked him up. He escaped with his life intact, no mean feat after seeing the face of God[1], but, not without suffering a dislocated hip, resulting [...]

Albedo: dialogue with the soul

What does it mean to enter into a dialogue with your soul? Jungian psychology is unusual in being a psychology for the healthy. Although Jung’s unique and original approach is a highly effective psychotherapeutic method, it goes beyond the narrow focus of medical psychotherapy. Jung and his Magnum Opus[1] provides an extraordinary system of psychological and spiritual growth and transformation. Whilst it is impossible to do justice to the method in a few sentences, or even to clearly state its [...]

The Middle Passage, from Misery to Meaning in Midlife by James Hollis

This book review is by Lynelle Pieterse and will be explored in the bookclub. Follow this link to join the Jungian Bookclub. James Hollis received his Diploma in Analytical Psychology from the C.G. Jung Institute in Zurich, and is the Director of the C.G. Jung Educational Center in Houston, Texas. He is a frequent guest speaker who spends winters in analytic practice and writes during the summers. In his books, he elaborates on the theories of C. G. Jung. Contemplated [...]

Lessons in Heartbreak

I recently fell in love. Deeply. I had all the classic symptoms; I couldn’t eat, I couldn’t sleep, I couldn’t focus on anything. He was interesting, cute, sweet, sexy, bright, difficult, challenging – everything that I wanted. He told me that he never shared so intimately with anyone, he told me he loved me, he told me that he was a better man around me, he told me that he thinks I could be the one. And the kisses…well, left [...]

Have you swallowed another’s shadow?

Have you ever met one of those couples, where the one is just perfect and fantastic and their partner is a walking disaster? One is incompetent, inappropriate, a total bitch or bastard, etc. Yet their partner is charismatic, socially skilled, an all round good person. And you think to yourself what on earth is he doing with her (or vice versa). Whilst I was doing research on Persona, I came across a story told by Jung which illustrates this very [...]

COMPLEX, ARCHETYPE, SYMBOL in the Psychology of C.G. Jung by Jolande Jacobi

This is a book review by Lynelle Pieterse who manages the Jungian Book Club. Click here to buy this book. Complex/Archetype/Symbol in the Psychology of C.G. Jung (Bollingen Series (General)) Introduction In the foreword, Jung writes: “…the concept of the archetype has given rise to the greatest misunderstandings.” The book is a discussion about the intricate terms Complex, Archetype, and Symbol and specifically about how they are interrelated. Jolande Jacobi was an associate of C.G. Jung for many years. She is known for her [...]