Janus in Zürich:

Dr. Steve Buser and I have been treated to an extraordinary five days in Zürich, Switzerland. The collage above was created from two photos captured while on a long bicycle ride around parts of Lake Zürich.  It is a piece of public sculpture we could easily have missed. I felt a sort of undulation through as the statue and I encountered each other that is difficult to describe. In this scene of participation mystique other characters began to appear. Recall that Jung explains this idea of participation mystique as follows:

Participation mystique “denotes a peculiar kind of psychological connection with objects, and consists in the fact that the subject cannot clearly distinguish himself from the object but is bound to it by a direct relationship which amounts to partial identity.” (Jung 1921: para 781).

Janus, the Roman god representing beginnings, transitions, passageways, and endings was awakened by this sculpture.  Such two-faced images call forth the complementarity revealed throughout nature.  Whether we consider the night and the day, the unconscious and the unconscious, the feminine and masculine, we encounter repeated reminders that life frequently arrives as a pair of apparent opposites.  Quite often when it seems otherwise, when one polarity has overtaken the other, we ill eventually be required to acknowledge the hidden other.  Such requirements may be seen in the interior landscape in such phenomena as the inferior function that Jung, von Franz and others describe.  In the outer life, the symbol of the yin-yang reminds us that at any moment whatever has overtaken its opposite may reverse since within each extreme manifestation exists the seed of its opposite. Transformation is the theme of Chiron Publications’s most recent release Paths to Transformation by Zürich trained analyst Kate Burns. Our encounter with the public statue quietly tucked away between Seestrasse and the shoreline of Lake Zürich also called forth Michaelangelo’s unfinished sculpture.  As if the stone awaited the arrival of a human being guided by Techne, the goddess ruling over such artisans skills.  In those encounters between a stone, perhaps the very embodiment of lifelessness, through the skillful hands of the sculptor, emerges something that seems very alive.  The figure depicted in public statue struck me as ambivalent, unsure whether to fully emerge into the solar consciousness or perhaps better to retreat into the lunar realms.  It was indeed lucky that the encounter with this statue occurred in the afternoon when the sun was beginning its descent into the western sky so that the front of the statue was brightly illuminated whereas the back of the statue was in the shadows.   I wish to issue an invitation that may be better characterized as a challenge.  We are living in times of great crisis as we witness the heating of the planet from the exaggerated, almost urgent use of fossil fuels.  One of the most fundamental resources we share, water, is being despoiled, harnessed for hydroelectric power, and simply squandered.  One of the tragic consequences of these crises is the biodiversity of our planet is rapidly declining such that a gestalt favoring monoculture over biodiversity asserts itself in our individual and collective psyches.  For instance, our expectations have shaped to desire a uniform appearing tomato at our grocer’s shelves.  But do we pause to consider that the desire for a uniform appearing tomato is a manufactured expectation whose downstream effect is profoundly unstable.   Any gardner knows that a tomato plant produces different sizes and shapes of tomato. Of course, a tomato’s genome can be manipulated to improve its yield of uniformly shaped tomatoes.  But we may ask ourselves what has actually been improved and at what cost?  As a variety of tomato that yields uniform appearing fruit succeeds in the market (note the intentional double entendre), we are apt to find more growers shifting to this variety.  This shift will happen at the expense of a varied, diverse cultivation of tomatoes that produce different sizes, shapes and colors.  One might imagine an individual act of rebellion playing out in day-to-day decisions when we arrive at the grocer’s stand.  Imagine thoughtfully and mindfully choosing the irregular, misshapen fruit.  I have often wondered why the god Hephaestus, creator of so many beautiful things must himself be deformed or misshapen.  For me it serves as a reminder that perhaps choosing the ugly tomato or the oddly shaped zucchini is a first step in participating in the creation of something quite beautiful, a biodiverse ecosystem.   The Challenge  Consider any of the big themes or cries of our time like energy, water resources, the loss of biodiversity.  Listen and seek out the deep symbols that lie beneath the surface.  Beware of seizing hold of the first symbol you identify since it may be a deeper symbol awaits the persistent inquirer.  Two valuable resources that can serve as references are Jungian Symbolic Psychology (Byington), Chiron Dictionary of Greek and Roman Mythology,  and The Herder Dictionary of Symbols. Once you find the symbol(s) see how you might communicate that deep symbol to others.  Finally suppose you succeed in communicating something about the symbol you have excavated.   The challenge becomes how to let this work inform your day-to-day decisions.  Here I mean to encourage choosing the ugly tomato, the walk to the store that leaves the automobile behind, the decision to reclaim rainwater, reduce waste, reuse materials, and the countless other small decisions we make every day.  When our psychological work is then made flesh and dwells among us through the small and large choices we make concerning how we live not only may we find ourselves in a drama of participation mystique with the objects of our world, but we will have brought the fire of inspiration imparted to us by the gods into the manifest world.  Like the statue that Steve and I encountered that seemed to maintain an encampment in the hidden unconscious realm simultaneously with the evident, conscious realm, when we accept the challenge we may find it difficult to distinguish inner and outer, manifest and latent, implicate and explicate order.   ACKNOWLEDGEMENT I wish to acknowledge that the source of most of the ideas contained in this blog is Frau Brigitte Egger, who has done very original work in psychecology.  Notice the ordering of the root words psyche and ecology.  Brigitte confirmed for me that this is an intentional ordering of the words that connotes that it is first the work of inner transformation that equips us to go into the world as agents of change.  I urge anyone interested in these subjects to visit her website at www.psychecology.ch .  Frau Egger has agreed to present a webinar for the Asheville Jung Center on Water in early 2015.

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Dying into Life

By Bud Harris Ph.D. and Massimilla Harris Ph.D.

“Does our essence live on after death?” was a compelling question asked during the Asheville Jung Center’s webinar on “Re-visioning the Dead, Alive in the Afterlife” with Jungian analysts, Murray Stein and John Hill. “Is there an afterlife?” and “How should we face death?” are questions that touch some of the deepest fears and longings in our heart. At some level we all wonder what is this dream we call life, where is it going and does it matter? Jung thought that facing these questions was key to our quest for wholeness when in Memories, Dreams, Reflections (p. 302) he states, “A man should be able to say he has done his best to form a conception of life after death, or to create some image of it—even if he must confess his failure. Not to have done so is a vital loss. For the question that is posed to him is the age-old heritage of humanity: an archetype, rich in secret life, which seeks to add itself to our own individual life in order to make it whole.” Jung goes on to say: “Reason sets the boundaries far too narrowly for us, and would have us accept only the known – and that too with limitations – and live in a known framework, just as if we were sure how far life actually extends.”

The webinar’s provocative discussion generated a lively discussion between my wife and I as we sat with a glass of wine, later in the evening. We soon found, to our surprise, that talking about death became enlivening, as it led us into a more interesting discussion of life. We would like to share some of these thoughts with you.

We began our conversation by asking ourselves what  questions about death and the afterlife mean to how we are living today. By delving into the meaning behind Jung’s description of  “…an archetype, rich in secret life,” we were prompted to more deeply inquire: how does seeking an understanding of death and the afterlife enrich the individuation process and contribute to making our lives more whole. We also realized this kind of in-depth discussion gives us an opportunity to think about individuation and what our feeling of wholeness is from a slightly different perspective than usual.

When we talk about death seriously the first thing that comes up is our fear of death. Our fear leads to denial and an inability to form a perspective on the afterlife. Fear and denial rigidify the defensive stance of our egos and diminishes or inhibits their ability to face the transformative cycles through which we grow, the life-death-rebirth processes that are a necessary part of our individuation process. When denied and repressed our fear of death lurks in the depths of our psyche like a great white shark and its presence is ultimately reflected in our fear of becoming fully alive. This primitive devouring presence of danger can become reflected in the fears we harbor about our own necessary transformations and a future defined by the Self, rather than our values, goals, desires.

One of the main questions then becomes how does individuation, the dream of a life that fulfills its unique potentials, both help us and require us to forge a perspective on death and the afterlife. Our religious heritages are closely connected to death and they tell us in their own ways that death should inform life and how we live in this life will affect how we live in the afterlife. For these ideas to be reflected throughout history and, in some form, in almost every religion, makes them archetypal. That is why Jung thought it was critical to our wholeness to consider them. Jung knew that our ideas about death and the afterlife can either inform or cripple how we live, can limit us to the bounds of our intellects, or open us to the inspiring and healing powers of our emotions and the expanses of our mythopoetic capacities. We have an inherent longing to come up with our own conclusions about these mysteries. Our same religious history, Jung thought, reflects an additional longing, that is often buried so deep that we may not even be aware of it. This longing is to have our lives connected to something greater than ourselves, something infinite, so we can embody something essential to insure that our life matters.

Let us not forget that in Jungian psychology our inherent needs reflect powerful instinctual energies that call for psychological channels to contain and direct them. Jung likened the flow of instinctual energy to a river and the archetype as the deep channel in which the water of life has flowed for years, creating a riverbed (C.W. 10, para. 395) that directs this energy.

I was dropped into the vastest of these mysteries as a child, when my mother died. Her death left me feeling abandoned in a hostile world and shattered my childhood image of God. Sadly the Protestant church of my childhood had forsaken the religious symbols and rituals that could have carried me along its archetypal riverbeds through those “deep water” emotions of shock, pain, grief, sorrow…and helped me heal, and find life anew.

Throughout history we have had rituals for preparing for death and the afterlife. But, as Massimilla and I often see in our practices, many of us have outgrown our religious containers when they fail to transform along with us and our needs. All too often, they no longer give us the mythic or symbolic riverbeds to carry us through these crucial human experiences. As a result of these failures, we find that Jung is right. We must deal with these needs as part of our efforts to become whole.


Click Here for Information the book The Fire and the Rose: The Wedding of Spirituality and Sexuality by Dr. Harris


Massimilla and I find that our individuation process, the guiding focus of our lives, challenges us to begin facing death in two special ways. The first one is when we fully realize that we grow psychologically and spiritually by the process of transformation – the cycle of life, death, and rebirth – that is facilitated by our emotional healing and growing consciousness. As we are continuing to transform, we are facing another symbolic death, an encounter with the Self, the Transcendent, the Divine within us. This encounter which necessitates a death and a rebirth of our ego also leads us toward thoughts of the Beyond.

Jungian psychology is frequently so challenging to understand that we often have to remind ourselves that individuation is not an intellectual activity. It is based upon our ability to engage in life actively, reflect on our experiences, listen to our unconscious, and develop the emotional capacities that enable us to fully engage in life. The events in the individuation process are there to push us beyond the ways our histories, families and culture have defined us. In this process, we must be willing to face ourselves, confront the complexes in our shadow, transform their archetypal cores and thereby transform our lives. Here, again, is the transformative cycle, the symbolic life – death – rebirth process. As we live this process, we must continually help old parts of us die, and be willing to live in the betwixt and between state of not knowing who we fully are, until the new parts of our personality have emerged. In this way, if we fully pursue individuation, we will consciously and intentionally encounter death as part of an archetypal format of growth that is an integral part of life.

So this journey through self-knowledge initiates the possibility for us to have an encounter with the Self. This second aspect of the individuation process takes us into a more profound experience of transformation and death in life. The Self is the natural source of life energy and vitality within us. It is also the inherent drive within us to live a life with meaning, to seek, accept and realize our unique potentials and our totality…and to be connected to something larger than ourselves. If this creative force within us stays frustrated too long, then its appearance often catches us unaware and is a formidable experience. When this happens, we may find our hopes, dreams, ambitions and the way we want our lives to be – blocked. We may feel like life is drying up or we may be having to contend with a major illness or other predicament that we can see no way out of. Our visions of the future and our hopes may fail us. In a sense, encountering the Self is like dying. Jung articulates it like this: “ The experience of the Self is always like a defeat for the ego.” (C. W. 14, para. 778 ) Clearly, this experience is life-stopping, and well beyond having just “a bad day”. It is when the structures that support who we are – that give value and meaning to our lives and hope for our futures – have disappeared. We may feel like a shipwrecked Odysseus tossed naked, alone and exhausted onto a lonely beach; or a humiliated Inanna stripped of all that was valuable to her and then left hanging deserted and alone in the darkness of the underworld.

It has been very helpful to us to have some idea of the archetypal pattern we are going through when we experience these events. Edward Edinger in Encounter with the Self (p. 9) explains that if we know the archetypal process, if we can accept our defeat and persevere in the work of individuation, then we will meet the Self, “…the ‘Immortal One’ who wounds and heals, who casts down and raises up, who makes small and makes large – in a word, the One who makes us whole.” This experience is, in his words, “ a crucifixion of the ego.”  Our sense of I-dentity dies and is reborn smaller, and paradoxically, stronger. As our awareness of the Self and the part it has played in our lives grows, it becomes very comforting to know that we are no longer alone within ourselves and life. Edinger goes on to say, “The vicissitudes of life take on new and enlarged meaning. Dreams, fantasies, illness, accident and coincidence become messages from the unseen Partner with whom we share our lives.” Edinger, here, assures us that if we persevere through this psychological death, there will be a very interesting afterlife.

Massimilla and I have found that realizing the Self is a powerful experience of “living through death” which significantly changes our attitudes toward life, eternity, and the Beyond. As we have come to know the presence of the Self and learned to relate to it and accept it as the guiding spirit in our lives, this entire process has brought comfort to the way we feel about approaching death. In religious terms, it is like saying: “God Is with us.”

Death, the end of this life, should continually serve as a reminder that we need to face our “deaths” in this present life. Facing them carries us into the archetypal patterns of death, “…rich in secret life” which will open us to the support of our unconscious as we approach the end of our lives. Whenever we have to face a complex or an Encounter with the Self, it is important not to take the easy way out – by simply attempting to rebuild our lives and return to normal – without trying with all of our strength to understand the deep dimensions of what we have encountered or of what has happened to us. Jung refers to this taking the easy way out as “the regressive restoration of the persona”. (C. W. 17, para. 254) We’ve heard countless stories, like the one about the successful man who had a heart attack while on the golf course, and whose life was barely saved because a passer-by had a cell phone. In the hospital, he vowed to change his life. A few weeks later though, he was back at work and back on the golf course, having forgotten his vow.

In other words, we must go forward by “dying into life,” facing the deaths needed in our individuation in order to fulfill and live the broader potentials within us, to open our capacities to love more completely, and to be sure that when death finds us, we are fully alive. Individuation means accepting the reality of our unconscious, sacrificing our ego control of our lives and, with discernment, listening to the superior intelligence of the Self to guide us through life. We wonder, in the long run, how often we are like the man mentioned just now, who was more afraid of facing himself, of questioning his values, ideas and complexes, of “dying into life,” than he was of literally dying. As part of the journey, it is helpful if we can take this line of questioning a step further, and ask ourselves if our fear of dying into life is really our fear of living fully.

While Jung was writing The Red Book, during the darkest and most transformative period of his life, he understood from a dream that he had to “kill” the Parsifal within himself. For us, in psychological language, this means he had to transform the core of the Parsifal complex within himself and redirect its instinctual energy into avenues more in harmony with his Self. Of course this was no small realization. The goals and values of this complex, which we would call his central or dominant complex, had carried him out of childhood and into a very successful adult life. While he realized it had become a prison that he needed to break out of, it also meant sacrificing the drive and ideals of success and the good life that had guided him so far.

Think for a minute about the enormity of this realization. We are called on to sacrifice the psychological structure and the dominant characteristics that may have made us feel safe, successful – that formed our adaptation, defined our personality and is a cornerstone in who we are. This is what “dying into life” really means and it is what becoming fully alive really means. Massimilla and I have also discovered, through our decades of work, that dying into life doesn’t mean that we have to devalue or throw away any of our competencies or things we have accomplished. But they have to come into the service of life in new ways.

As we think about such radical shifts, it is helpful to remember that the basic goal of Jungian analysis is the transformation of the core of complexes. (The Symbolic Quest: Basic Concepts in Analytical Psychology, Edward Whitmont, p. 67) In a personal conversation with us, Marie-Louise von Franz emphasized the importance of transforming our dominant complex. This transformation is the most significant death and rebirth in our lives and opens us to the future inherent in our Self. One might say that this transformation opens us to our true afterlife in this life.

Every complex that develops within us as we grow up carries the wounds and experiences of our childhood, the wounds and the effects of the unlived lives of our parents and ancestors, and the values and expectations of our society. Jung concluded from a dream in which he encountered “distinguished spirits” (Memories, Dreams, Reflections, p. 307) that as we work through our individuation, we are also carrying the individuation of our ancestors forward. In this way we are connected to the afterlife as we are often facing and addressing unresolved, unhealed and unredeemed issues that may have gone on in our families for generations.

Massimilla and I are very moved by the opportunities we have to transform our psychological legacies into healing and growthful directions. We have also found that just as a real death is harsh, every period of transformation has its grief…and experiencing it is part of being human. As Jungians, we must guard against the temptation to intellectualize life and Jungian psychology. It is too easy to deny our almost day by day experiences of grief and bury them in busyness or sublimate them in searches for momentary pleasures. It is also too easy to step aside and intellectualize death and our need to mourn for our own death. We can say it is just another passage, or as Hermann Hesse said, “To die is to go into the Collective Unconscious, to lose oneself in order to be transformed into form, pure form.” (C.G. Jung and Hermann Hesse, Miguel Serrano, p. 35) To some extent, this is a comforting thought, but no such thought ever came from Jung. He continued to search into life and its mysteries as long as he was alive.

Dying into life though individuation and knowing that the Self is supporting us has lessened our fear of death, perhaps even eliminated it. At the same time, it has greatly lessened our fear of life. Most of us don’t even know we have a fear of life, or how great that fear is, until individuation leads us into the full acceptance of life’s horror and beauty, its wholeness and our wholeness, our true strengths and our real weaknesses, our ability to love, our capacity for rage, our experience of ecstasy and our despair. Dying into life continually increases our ability to stop living in denial, and to see how integral a part of our lives death truly is, and how thoroughly it is woven into the fabric of our existence. Death and the afterlife are still mysteries, but we can be very in touch with them and informed by them.

A life fully lived brings peace, in the face of death. In our professional practices and in our personal lives, Massimilla and I have the security of trusting the archetypal processes we have experienced, to support our lives. In addition, we can see the possibilities of becoming spiritually and psychologically stronger, while we weaken physically. Most of all, we can feel the support of the Self when individuation is our task and, from all we can see, this is the best preparation for the afterlife.

We love the passage in Memories, Dreams, Reflections (p. 306), where Jung says: “But while the man who despairs marches toward nothingness, the one who has placed his faith in the archetype follows the tracks of life and lives right into his death. Both, to be sure, remain in uncertainty, but the one lives against his instincts, the other with them.”

“Revisioning the Dead, Alive in the Afterlife” has reminded us of the importance of these living energies and their presence in our psyches and in our lives, and how important it is to honor them. We are glad to have shared our thoughts with you.

Bud Harris, Ph. D.
Massimilla Harris, Ph. D.
Jungian Analysts

Bud Harris, Ph. D and Massimilla Harris, Ph. D. are practicing Jungian Analysts in Asheville, North Carolina. Both are graduates of the C. G. Jung Institute in Zurich. Bud and Massimilla are also authors, lecturers and have many creative pursuits. You may learn more about them at www.budharris.com.

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Individuation of God

The Entangled State of God and Humanity

Peter B. Todd

(Author: The Individuation of God) 

Click Here to Watch a Video interview with Peter Todd (Click Here for the Full 45 Minute Video) Contributions from archetypal depth psychology, quantum physics and neuroscience elucidate relationships between mind and matter. The published work of C.G. Jung, Wolfgang Pauli, David Bohm and Teilhard de Chardin outline a process whereby matter evolves in increasing complexity from sub-atomic particles to the human brain and the emergence of a reflective consciousness leading to a noosphere evolving towards an Omega point. The noosphere is the envelope of consciousness and meaning superimposed upon the biosphere a concept central to the evolutionary thought of Jesuit palaeontologist Pierre Teilhard de Chardin (The Phenomenon of Man). His central ideas, like those of Jung, provide intimations of a numinous principle implicit in cosmology and the discovery that in and through humanity, evolution becomes not only conscious of itself but also directed and purposive. Consciousness has become the mirror which the universe has evolved to reflect upon itself and in which its very existence is revealed. The implication for process theology is that God and humanity are in an entangled state so that the evolution of God cannot be separated from that of humankind. A process (Incarnational) theology inseminated by the theory of evolution is one in which humankind completes the individuation of God towards the wholeness represented for instance in cosmic mandala symbols (Jung, Collected Works, vol. 11). Jung believes that God needs humankind to become conscious, whole and complete, a thesis explored in my book The individuation of God: Integrating Science and Religion (Wilmette, IL: Chiron Publications 2012). Book Purchase One critical issue explored in my book is the epistemological one which underpins scholarly treatments of extended mind and its relationship with matter in process theology, archetypal psychology and quantum physics as well cultural or psychosocial evolution in the work of Teilhard de Chardin. The prevailing position since the seventeenth century has been that of reductionist materialism so that mental (psychic) qualities were either squeezed out of existence or marginalised as mere epiphenomenal by-products of brain processes. The nature of the mind-matter or consciousness-brain relationship is not always made explicit in published work even in psychoanalytic studies although neither classical physics nor Darwin’s theory of evolution could explain the anomaly of mind or  consciousness so crucial to the process (Incarnational) theology of Teilhard de Chardin as I argue in my paper Teilhard and Other Modern Thinkers on Evolution, Mind and Matter  published in the journal of the American Teilhard Association, Number 66,2013.

The Psychophysical Problem

Physicist Wolfgang Pauli who collaborated with Carl Jung regarded the anomaly of mind and consciousness as troublesome because scientific theories, like mathematics were products of the psyche with a great deal of unconscious preparation.  Pauli noted that repression of the psyche had been one-sided and dangerous creating a materialistic culture in which the influence of religion was continuously diminished and a very strict separation between science and religion was characteristic (Laurikainen, K.V. Beyond the Atom: The Philosophical Thought of Wolfgang Pauli, Springer-Verlag, 1988). Pauli regarded the nature of the mind-brain-consciousness relationship or psychophysical problem as one of the most challenging of our time, given its epistemological significance in both science and religion. Wholeness could only be restored to a science in which the personal equation or consciousness of the observer was to be integrated into the understanding of nature. The term “personal equation” was coined in the collaboration between Jung and Pauli. According to Pauli and as noted by the late high energy physicist Kalervo Laurikainen, “the most important lesson that quantum mechanics has given us is that we must include the observer in our picture of the world. This was the original spirit in the Copenhagen philosophy (in quantum physics) and exactly in this point Pauli represented this philosophy in the most consistent way” (ibid.163). The myth of the detached observer is a relic of classical, Newtonian mechanics prior to the quantum revolution. Paradoxically, no science would exist in the absence of the consciousness of the human observer nor would mathematics which is a psychological process “describing relationships organising matter” as noted by Karl Pribram (Consciousness Reassessed, Mind and Matter, 2, 1 (2004): 14).Pribram, a neuroscientist perhaps best known for his work on the holographic brain, also rejects the notion that consciousness is an epiphenomenal by-product of brain processes remarking that “conscious attention shapes subsequent behaviour”(Ibid.27).

Complementarity Between Mind and Matter

The published thought of both Carl Jung and Teilhard de Chardin converge with respect to the existence of a relationship of complementarity between mind and matter. In Jungian depth psychology, symbols represent unconscious archetypes which are timeless, cosmic ordering and regulating principles. In particular, Jung’s archetype of the Self or Imago Dei (God-image) is distinctly numinous in character and associated with religious or mystical feelings. This archetype can be understood as corresponding to Teilhard’s notion of the God-Omega Point in cosmology and evolution. In Jungian archetypal psychology, the unconscious not only transcends space-time it is also co-extensive with the cosmos itself as was Teilhard’s notions of complexity-consciousness, noosphere and the Omega point as the culmination of hominisation and cultural evolution. Teilhard wrote, “In Omega we have the principle we needed to explain the persistent march of things towards greater consciousness …. By its radial nucleus it finds its shape and its natural consistency in gravitating against the tide of probability towards a divine focus of mind which draws it onward. Thus something in the cosmos escapes from entropy and does so more and more” (The Phenomenon of Man. 271). Pauli, together with Jung wanted spirit (psyche) to be acknowledged as a basic element of the world along with matter so that the universe would be perceived as an organism rather than a clock, a vision of cosmogenesis similar to that of Teilhard’s noogenesis that implies evolving toward a divine focus of mind. Both Pauli and Jung were mystically inclined with a sense of psychic and physical codes implicit in cosmology and evolution. As I point out in my paper published in Teilhard Studies, they had concluded that a relationship of complementarity exists between mind and matter which is analogous to the wave particle duality in quantum physics. This was the epistemological model of a dual-aspect monism having metaphysical implications. One observer described these connotations commenting that “metaphysics taken seriously in the sense of Pauli and Jung refers to a reality more substantial, more material as it were than anything that physics and psychology would characterise as real” (Atmanspacher, Editorial, Mind and Matter,9, 1 (2011):4). This form of extraphysical reality was designated by a mode of cognition expressed through archetypal symbols indicating an objective order in the cosmos of which humans are part but which also transcends humanity (K. von Meyenn, “Dreams and Fantasies of a Quantum Physicist”, Mind and Matter 9, 1 (2011):11).

The U-Field of Wolfgang Pauli

For Pauli, archetypes combine sensory stimuli forming certain outlines and in this way a picture of the world is formed corresponding to the properties of the human psyche. With his concept of the U-field, Pauli regarded the unconscious as the psychological analogy of the physical field except that the U-field was not spatiotemporally bound, an idea consistent with the notion of the unconscious archetypes as timeless, cosmic, ordering and regulating principles. For Pauli this seemed to express a deeper similarity rather than a superficial analogy. The Jungian unconscious refers to “an invisible reality mediating a connection between spatially and temporally distant phenomena” (Ibid. von Meyenn 2011). Thus, Pauli regarded the archetypes as verifiable in the external phenomenal world and in the internal world of the psyche. In a letter to Jung Pauli wrote “like all ideas, the unconscious is simultaneous in man and in nature; the ideas have no location, not even in heaven. Consciousness, on the other hand was supposed to be only a late-born offspring of the unconscious soul.” One archetype that was particularly meaningful to Pauli was the coniunctio oppositorum, the union of opposites or wholeness reflected in non-local effects, interconnectedness and holism associated with both the quantum situation and the unconscious psyche. Pauli’s cosmic ordering and regulating principles were not spatiotemporally bound or confined. They were as universal, timeless or eternal as those which like the archetypes of God and the Self, belonged to Jung’s collective unconscious, particularly when identified with either the external cosmos or the cosmos within. Although a “late born offspring of the unconscious soul”, consciousness is still the mirror in which the very existence of the universe is revealed as are the archetypal symbols of the collective unconscious. Such concepts resonate with Teilhard’s notions of the noosphere and Omega point at which the numinous dimension implicit in his evolutionary process consummates itself. For both Jung and Pauli, psyche and physis, like mind and matter and science and religion exist in a relationship of complementarity rather than being irreconcilable opposite or mutually antagonistic as I have argued in my book The Individuation of God: Integrating Science and Religion.

The Implicate Order of Bohm

In his later published work, physicist David Bohm evolved a concept of Mind which was co-extensive with the universe, one that closely resembled formulations by other physicists, psychologists and such religious thinkers as Teilhard de Chardin. Among Bohm’s contributions to the exploration of reality was an understanding of consciousness as a coherent whole. In his book Wholeness and the Implicate Order (1980), Bohm writes “The vast unconscious background of explicit consciousness and ultimately unknowable depths of inwardness are analogous to the sea of energy which fills the sensible perceived empty space” (P.267). In his final work, The Undivided Universe (2002), Bohm expressed the insight that “active information served as the bridge between the mental and the physical” (P.386). Bohm’s notion of extended mind included the idea of active quantum information devoid of consciousness, thereby avoiding the criticism of panpsychism and the conflation of mind with consciousness. Jung and Pauli likewise avoided the conflation of mind with reflective consciousness in their treatment of the unconscious (U-field). Bohm’s concept of active information as a bridge between mind and matter is remarkably similar to the notion of the unconscious archetypes as cosmic ordering and regulating principles. These insights provide the basis for the epistemological position of a relationship of complementarity between mind and matter. Bohm clearly adopted a dual-aspect monist notion of the mental and the physical being complementary though irreducible to one another. His dual aspect concept of mind represents a rejection of a purely monist materialist explanation of the nature of reality. More controversially perhaps, Bohm like Teilhard proposed human participation in “a greater collective mind in principle capable of going indefinitely beyond even the human species as a whole”. Such collective mind is analogous to Jung’s view of the unconscious psyche and the archetypes. Bohm summarised his position concerning the role of the human observer in this way: “There is no need to regard the observer as basically separate from what he sees nor to reduce him to an epiphenomenon of the objective process. More broadly one could say that through the human being, the universe has created a mirror to observe itself” (Ibid, 389).


Such reflections on mind not only represent a position radically different from metaphysical materialism, they also refute the argument that God is a delusion. In a perspective illuminated by the insights of Pauli, Jung and Bohm, Teilhard predicted that humanity not only participates in a numinous dimension but also in a process of co-creative divinisation by directing the future of the biosphere and the noosphere. Teilhard held that the ultimate nature of evolution is psychic referring to the “primordial psychism of the first cells” (The Phenomenon of Man, 166) and to its completion as “a divine focus of mind” (Ibid. 271). This view was endorsed by the eminent evolutionary biologist Sir Julian Huxley who wrote in his introduction to The Phenomenon of Man, “evolutionary fact and logic demand that minds should have evolved gradually as well as bodies and that accordingly, mind-like properties must be present throughout the universe” (The Phenomenon of Man, 16-17). Huxley commented that “Teilhard wanted to deal with the entire human phenomenon as a transcendence of biological by psychosocial evolution” (Ibid.24)

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Individuation of God

The Individuation of God: Book Review By Leonard Cruz

The Individuation of God: Integrating Science and Religion Peter B Todd

A book review

By Leonard Cruz, M.D. , M.E.

Erit in omnibus in Omnia Deus (God may become all in and through all)

The Phenomenon of Man

Pierre Telihard de Chardin

Click Here for Peter Todd’s interview with Dr. Rachael Kohn

Quantum mechanics, depth psychology, and mysticism are blended in Peter Todd’s scholarship as he searches for a Third-Millennium Theology.  Todd effectively strikes a blow to the The God Delusion, Richard Dawkins’s enormously popular 2006 book by highlighting that the God Dawkins seeks to dismantle, a God infused with classical Newtonian and neo-Darwinian ideas, has already been silenced and annihilated.  Todd correctly points out that Dawkins completely ignores revolutionary ideas emerging from quantum mechanics high priests such as David Bohm (The Undivided Universe), Erwin Schrödinger (What is Life?), and evolutionary biologists like McFadden, Al-Khalilili (A Quantum Mechanical Model of Adaptive Mutation) who propose a quantum mechanical model of evolution.  One consequence of Todd’s frequent reference to Dawkins is that it may unintentionally promote The God Delusion.

During the twentieth century, under the banner of process theology, various explorations of God’s attribute of being mutable were undertaken.  The Individuation of God is at once a psychologically well-informed work and another contribution to process theology.  Readers who are familiar with certain bedrock ideas from quantum mechanics will undoubtedly appreciate Todd’s grasp more than those for whom ideas like quantum entanglement, or emergent phenomenon are entirely new concepts.  It may be helpful to explain some concepts and Wikipedia provides some succinct explanations with suitable references (retrieved 2/3/2013 )

Quantum entanglement is a form of quantum superposition. When a measurement is made and it causes one member of such a pair to take on a definite value (e.g., clockwise spin), the other member of this entangled pair will at any subsequent time[6] be found to have taken the appropriately correlated value (e.g., counterclockwise spin). Thus, there is a correlation between the results of measurements performed on entangled pairs, and this correlation is observed even though the entangled pair may have been separated by arbitrarily large distances.[7]In Quantum entanglement, part of the transfer happens instantaneously. [8]

Emergence is the way complex systems and patterns arise out of a multiplicity of relatively simple interactions. Emergence is central to the theories of integrative levels and of complex systems.

The negentropy, also negative entropy,[1] of a living system is the entropy that it exports to keep its own entropy low; it lies at the intersection of entropy and life.  (It is a measure of a systems tendency to move toward or sustain complexity and order.)

Todd suggests that God and man are in an entangled state such that both God’s and man’s individuation are inextricably bound and reliant on one another for completion.  This will strike many Christians as antithetical and heretical, but it may provide process theologians a solid scientific basis for their claims.

The book’s first chapter, “The Case against God” summarizes the case Dawkins prosecutes against God in which he contends that belief in a personal god constitutes a delusion.  In “Religious Fundamentalism as a Shadow”, Todd notes that fundamentalism and the literalism it espouses is “One major challenge to the survival of humanity…” . (p 21) The third chapter, “Mind and Directed Evolution” introduces the most revolutionary claims.  Insofar as the quality of mind is revealed even at the quantum level, Todd explains that biosystems may be viewed as quantum computers. As such,  they are capable of evaluating infinite probability states, and through natural selection, efficiently choosing evolutionary changes that are  useful for survival.  If for example, the mutation of the HIV retrovirus involves something other than random events, then humankind’s collective conscious response may be understood as a “metaphorical quantum entanglement between the developed and developing worlds…that transcends the confines of nationalism and economic self-interest…” (p48).

In the chapter titled “Consciousness as an Organizing Principle” the author decries spiritual materialism, secularism, and the religion of the state for their ability to support a “God of insects” (p82), wherein spirit and numinosity is repressed and no individuality exists like with beehives or ant colonies.  This conception of God has menacing effects upon the planet and its resources.  In the totalitarian states especially, “…no individuality exists … the individuation process is repressed so that personal self-identity is subsumed to a mindless devotion to the state …”.  Depth psychology, theology, and the numinous qualities of archetypal symbols illuminate how man’s conception of God can evolve beyond a transitional object.

The last two chapters, “Myth, Symbol, and Transformation” and “A Third-Millennium Theology” challenge conventional understanding of time’s arrow and reintroduce the numinous in an effort to propose a theology for our current millennium.  Todd is not suggesting a third-millennium theology as some completed endpoint.   However, he seems to be mindful of the simultaneous threats of thermonuclear warfare, chemical  & biological weapons, natural resource depletion, and global warming.  These are more dangerous if humanity remains fixed in the mindset of religious fundamentalism, classical Newtonian mechanics, or neo-Darwinian orthodoxy.

            The Individuation of God inquires about time and the illusion of time’s arrow.  Todd invokes Schrödinger’s reference to the “tyranny of Chronos” in considering the indestructibility of the mind.  The Greek New Testament uses two words for time, Chronos (Χρόνος) and Kairos (καιρός).  Kairos is the indeterminate time, often discovered in the liminal realm, when something special happens.  It can be thought of as the emergent moment, the eternal now, or the realm where the illusion of time’s arrow is transcended.

In the end, The Individuation of God  is a valiant and well-informed effort to integrate modern science, psychology, and theology.  The Individuation of God successfully interweaves an expansive list of sources.  In the last chapter His Holiness the Dalai Lama is quoted, “If science proves some belief of Buddhism wrong, then Buddhism will have to change.” (p141).  And from Einstein’s essay, “The World as I See It” he quotes, “The most beautiful experience we can have is the mysterious.”  We arrive at some intriguing conclusions that “Without psyche there would be no theory to explain the outlines and patterns discovered by science.” (p150)  In the course of God becoming fully human through the incarnation, arises a corollary and possibility, that humanity is becoming divine.  This is in perfect alliance with Jung’s notion of Christ as a symbol of the coniunctio, for Christ reconciles opposites.

The evolution of God and the evolution of man cannot be separated.  There is a trajectory of humanity’s conception of God that began with a mythopoetic, animistic experience of the divine. This trajectory later traverses the epochs in which omnipotent, often patriarchal Olympian or Old Testament deities reigned with ferocity and aloofness.  And this arrives at a “…three-hundred-year-old schism between science and religion” (p160) that yielded a demythologized, annihilated god.  Peter Todd’s third millennium theology, may provide a path of return to the Garden of Eden.  This third millennium theology is characterized by a deep appreciation for the entangled state of our inner and outer life, of I and Thou, and of the physical and the numinous.  This theology brings man’s evolving notion of God full circle where it is once more infused with myths and symbols.  In this regard, depth psychology and Jung’s seemingly unfathomable explorations continue to enrich us.

At times it may appear at times that Todd too often refers to ideas previously mentioned, but this is necessary since many topics are likely to be unfamiliar.  The frequent invocation of Richard Dawkins’s The God Delusion, makes The Individuation of God, appear to be a disputation of Dawkins.  This is a small shortcoming, of this book but The Individuation of God deserves to stand alone with Dawkins relegated to a footnote and bibliographic reference.

– Len Cruz, MD


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2012  Maya prophecy

A Look at Eternity through the Maya concept of Time and Reality

Why all the fuss about the end of the world on December 21, 2012? And what do the Maya and Jung have to say about it? 

 By: Nancy Swift Furlotti

 Do we really believe the end of the world is upon us at the end of this year? It is true that our world feels full of chaos, wars, terror attacks, economic collapses, and environmental disasters. But is this really new? If we look back in history we discover that the world has been a dangerous and unpredictable place from the beginning. So, would you really prefer to live in another time with dinosaurs crashing around you, bubonic plague wiping out your community, or the inquisition stripping you of your religious choice and life? I wouldn’t.

Each era offers challenges to our human race, and now is no exception. But why do we jump to the conclusion that the end of the world is coming? Perhaps it is our linear thinking that focuses on only one of two possibilities. Many believe the universe began with one Big Bang and will end in a Black Hole. Others are convinced the world began with Genesis and will end with Revelation. There are actually other ways of imagining our existence.

The Maya, for example, thought about it extensively and developed a very sophisticated conception and application of time and reality that far exceeded the rest of the world, and perhaps still does. Their surprisingly accurate calculations of dates go back millions of years and forward well into the future. So what about December 21, 2012, the so-called end of the Maya fourth world? What does that mean to them, not just what it means to us? It is their calendar and their date; we can learn something from them if we listen.

A Western thinker who wrestled with the concept of time and reality was C. G. Jung, who wrote about cyclical periods of world chaos within the aeons of time.  Interestingly, both the Maya and Jung proposed the idea of circular or non-linear time. Another Western thinker, Mircea Eliade, called it sacred time. Perhaps this is what we are missing in our world today, and is a clue to why we think the world will end.

On November 29th we will hold a global seminar from Washington DC and Zurich looking at the question of will the world end on December 21st and what is the meaning behind this.  We will explore the significance of time and reality, the procession of the worlds for the Maya, and how it was a fundamental part of their religion. We will discuss its significance in relation to the most important Maya document to survive the Spanish Conquest, the Popol Vuh. This sacred book of the Quiche Maya, called the Dawn of Life, contains their myth of creation and destruction that lays out the template for how humans participate with the Gods in the ever repeating cycle of life, death, and rebirth. We shall observe how this myth may apply to our world today and what we can learn from it. With all the chaos in our current world, it seems we have a lot to learn!

-Nancy Swift Furlotti


Mayan Calendar End of the World December 21, 2012?

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Bias, Trayvon Martin, and Undercurrents in American Society

Bias, Trayvon Martin, and Undercurrents in American Society

Len Cruz, MD

“Every man has reminiscences which he would not tell to everyone but only his friends. He has other matters in his mind which he would not reveal even to his friends, but only to himself, and that in secret. But there are other things which a man is afraid to tell even to himself, and every decent man has a number of such things stored away in his mind.”  Fyodor Dostoyevsky 


The daughter of a friend of mine sent this photo from her mobile phone. It was a bumper sticker seen on an SUV in Raleigh, NC. My friend’s daughter, an African-American woman, is a graduate of a very prestigious North Carolina university and her younger sister is completing her sophomore year at Columbia University with plans to study abroad at the London School of Economics next year. Here is evidence of the deep undercurrents of of racial tension that persist in the United States of America.  These are undercurrents that can immediately redefine the conversation and put aside the many accomplishments of our sitting President and reduce the discourse to a racial slur.

A tinderbox seems on the verge of igniting with the shooting of an African-American teenager by a man engaged in some sort of neighborhood watch.  When the President said “If I had a son, he would look like Trayvon” it stirred even more fervent discourse with some accusing him of a making a divisive remark.  But in other parts of the world, the remark was a moment of humanity http://articles.timesofindia.indiatimes.com/2012-03-25/us/31236101_1_obama-first-president-obama-civil-rights .

A Florida law initially provided a cover for George Zimmerman, the man who pulled the trigger. The law that is referred to as “Stand Your Ground” is allegedly the basis upon which the Sanford Police did not arrest Zimmerman who claimed he shot in self-defense.

According to Mother Jones, the provision of the Florida law that “…allows Florida residents to use deadly force against a threat without attempting to back down from the situation. (More stringent self-defense laws state that gun owners have “a duty to retreat” before resorting to killing.)” (http://motherjones.com/politics/2012/03/what-happened-trayvon-martin-explained)

Here is where things become murky. I recommend you take a few minutes and visit a site available on the WEB where you can complete the “Implicit Bias Test” (https://implicit.harvard.edu/implicit/Study?tid=-1) The Project Implicit site offers the following definition of an implicit stereotype, “An implicit stereotype is a stereotype that is powerful enough to operate without conscious control.” This provides a useful framework for exploring Trayvon Martin’s tragic death.

It would be helpful if all interested stakeholders would suspend judgment about the events of February 26, 2012. Meanwhile, there are lessons we can contemplate about unacknowledged stereotypes and the perils of crafting a statutory defense based on perceived threat. Most of us are likely to discover we have implicit bias in various areas. Jung’s use of word association tests were pioneering and continue to provide insights into bias.

As the drama in Sanford, Florida, unfolds, there are resonances of unconscious bias and aspects of shadow that are both individually and collectively provoked. I have gone back to watch the DVD from the Asheville Jung Center’s conference “Symbols and Individuation in Global Politics: The Case of Barack Obama” (null) The second DVD AJC #14 with Dr. Tom Singer provided a timely exploration of some of themes evoked by Trayvon Martin’s death and the reactions to it.

Dostoyevsky’s quote calls us all to the high call of pushing past our unacknowledged secrets that reside in the personal and collective unconscious and that populate the archetype of our shadow.

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The Better Angels of Our Nature

During the last portion of the seminar on October 13, 2011 titled Energy! The Ecology of the Psyche and the World,  Dr. Murray Stein spoke about a book review he had just read on “The Better Angels of Our Nature” by Steven Pinker.  I looked up the source of that title and discovered that it was in the closing lines of President Abraham Lincoln’s First Inaugural Address given on March 4, 1861.
Here is an excerpt:

We are not enemies, but friends. We must not be enemies. Though passion may have strained it must not break our bonds of affection. The mystic chords of memory, stretching from every battlefield and patriot grave to every living heart and hearthstone all over this broad land, will yet swell the chorus of the Union, when again touched, as surely they will be, by the better angels of our nature.

These words, uttered over seven generations ago as a nation was being torn asunder, remind us that we are not enemies.  We are not enemies with each other, with the companion animals who share the earth, nor with the environment; though at times, it seems like we have declared war.  Perhaps the day is dawning when again touched by the better angels of our nature, we may be at peace with our world.

Dr. Egger and Dr. Stein imparted so many profoundly important things during last Thursday’s seminar that any remarks are likely to detract.  Instead, I offer a few quotes I jotted down during the seminar and subsequent question and answer period.  Let these remarks, like dew upon a parched land, offer the promise of renewing waters.

“When we face a destructive phenomenon, a symptom, we can take it heuristically, as a solution, we can take it as energy” (that is blocked).

“Everything psychic has a slight asymmetry (between the material world and psyche) in favor of the psyche.”

“If libido retreats from the world it goes to the unconscious and there, Jung says, you must follow it.”

“Nothing is so dangerous as life energy unable to be expressed honorably.”

“When you cannot listen to the other person, you may be under possession, where something is projected.”

“…the older the mythology, the clearer.”

“…energy is a movement that evens out opposites.”

“The archetype behind energy is the capacity for Divine Creation.”

“To withdraw a projection is to regain energy.”

“Neurosis is always a projection on a stupid thing…the symbolic life is a means to fee energy…”

“Human beings are born with an instinctual appetite … (and) driven to a spiritual inheritance.”

Seminar participants were invited to consider the impact of excessive energy usage and also invited to consider what energy is devoted in our society (both psychic energy and external energy).  Strangely, the distinction between the energy of the interior life and the energy of exterior engagement grew less certain but more meaningful.

Dr. Egger recommended cultivating Joy, Hope, and Love.  She likened this to the proper tuning of a violin in that proper tuning makes it easier to find the correct note.  As she explained, cultivating Joy, Hope, and Love “makes opportunity”.

The depth of perspective provided by Drs. Stein and Egger in the handling of their subject is difficult to convey.  The work of individuation and the work of conservation in their skillful hands seemed to be different facets of the same jewel.  Their teaching was clear, evocative, and nourishing.

Many thanks to those who chose to share something during the past two weeks.

Len Cruz, MD

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Home and Archetype: A Review of “At Home in the World”

When John Hill performed the role of Father Victor White in  The  Jung-White Letters, he seemed possessed by the spirit of the man.  In John Hill’s recent publication,  At Home in the World: Sounds and Symmetries of Belonging, leaves me wondering if he has now been possessed by an entire cloud of witnesses comprised of Irish poets spanning centuries.  There is a lyrical quality that pervades the book and the publisher, Spring Journal Books, has done a marvelous job with the layout, cover design, the references, and every detail of the book.  Perhaps John Hill pulled his inspiration from a Fairy fort but the result is magical.

As the February 4th conference Architecture of the Soul:  The Inner & Outer Structures of C G Jung, (with Murray Stein & Andreas Jung) approaches, this is a timely read.  Hill’s scholarship is systematic and rigorous, but the book is replete with powerful and evocative language.  Hill gently weaves into the text many others who have shaped and influenced him like Paul Ricouer, Ernst Cassirer, along with one of my favorite fiction writers, Jhumpa Lahiri.  The thesis of his book may appear self-evident but I could not have imagined the depth and breadth of material I found in this book.

John Hill has been practicing Jungian Psychoanalysis for forty years and it shows.  He has been devoted to matters of the spirit even longer.  The reader will enjoy the subtle, perceptive way Hill incorporates clinical material from client’s dreams and narratives.  It is refreshing to encounter a writer who also lays himself bare to the reader without crossing the line into self-indulgence that can easily become a spectacle.   This is an analyst who comprehends that self-disclosure, even within the pages of a book, can be a powerful tool. And I suspect he also understands that self-disclosure can also be unwieldy. Therapists do well to stay alert for moments when self-disclosure serves their own unmet needs for mirroring and affirmation since they may easy remained it is for their client’s benefit.

Modernity has ushered in unprecedented opportunities for homeowners to furnish their dwellings in cohesive, well designed styles that may sold as an entire package.  Some furniture retailers make it easy to avoid making mistake by standardizing entire groupings of furnishings.  IKEA is not unique in its ability to commoditize home furnishings and to impart a sense to its customers that a unique look can be achieved on a budget.  The sheer volume and global reach of an IKEA testifies to the inclination to make a home unique through elements that are in fact standardized.  Such a home, according to Hill may be at risk of being left “…. without a soul.”

In contrast, we will have the opportunity on February 4th to participate in a conference whose outer, visible subject is

The Home of C. G. Jung.  After reading Hill’s, At Home in the World: Sounds and Symmetries of Belonging, I suspect the upcoming conference presented through Asheville Jung Center will end up being about our own magnum opus, our home.  We each approach this differently, just as we each approach the magnum opus of our individuation differently.  For some, the reliance on a standard assortment of furnishings provides a personal space that avoid too much personal disclosure but also impedes personal discovery.  For others, the home provides a platform of self-expression.  There are homes I have entered where I could sense the disconnection between the soul of its inhabitants and the structure itself.  There are limitless permutations for combining the inner dimensions of our being and the outer structure of our home.  And according to John Hill, “When a home becomes a mere product, dissociated from one’s own personal and collective history, it is probably in danger of losing its soul.” (pg11)

Some individuals delight in assembling elements into a home.  They strive for that ineluctable symmetry between the inner call of the soul and the outer manifestation of their home.  When we speak of homemaking as a function of managing the household we miss the much deeper connection between the demands of keeping things going in a family and the making of a home.   Hill notes, “We live in a world that offers us two different ways of seeing it — one functional and the other symbolic.”  (pg47)  It seems there as many different modus operandi for fashioning a home as there are styles of composition, materials  and technique for the artist.

Good teachers like John Hill convey complex subjects in clearly understandable ways.  The five or six pages on transference provide a good illustration and despite their conciseness Hill does not sacrifice the rich, evocative quality of his prose.


Images alone do not necessarily address key psychological issues or cross the great divide between Thou and I … (pg112)


Often in the deep constellations of transference and countertransference, the client finds the opportunities to relive much of the past.  …  The analyst must realize that he cannot indulge in the fantasy of providing a home for all those who need one. (pg113)


I live on the hyphen as a Cuban-American.  My soul has one foot firmly planted in the United States of America where I was born while the other foot, the one possessed of dreams of return to an island I have never known, has nowhere to step.  Countless others share my experience of life on the hyphen. The nations that bookend their hyphen do not separate us nearly as much as the hyphen unites us.  We who are hyphenated are a diaspora in our own right.  We are caught between two homes the one we left and the one where we dwell.  But we are all likely to find ourselves somewhere along the continuum of a home we have known, a home we know now, and a home that awaits us.

Salmon Rushdie writes that, “Exile is a dream of a glorious return.”  Like Odysseus, we  may find ourselves in a seemingly endless pursuit of a return home.  John Hill reveals to us some of the personal details of his own life away from his native Ireland without being mawkish.  At Home in the World would be wonderful preparation for the upcoming conference Architecture of the Soul:  The Inner & Outer Structures of CG Jung, (with Murray Stein & Andreas Jung).  It will also be a great resource for anyone interested in the psychological implications and underpinnings of home from a Jungian perspective.

John Hill gave a gifted performance of Father Victor White in The Jung White Letters  that moved me to examine the chords that resonated through Jung’s relationship with Sigmund Freud and later Father White.  It also deeply moved me to consider what chords resonate through my relationships with men in my life.  Now At Home in the World has moved me to examine from a fresh perspective my relationship to place.  It has stirred a renewed interest in exploring the spaces and structures, past, present, and future that are called home in my life.  Hill’s last paragraph reads like a closing hymn in prose and here he reveals a dream that arrived as he brought the book to completion.

… All at once the dream flashed across my mind, and I “knew” what it was trying to say.

…The house was my book on home.  The brickwork symbolized the thoughts and ideas of others who had influenced me, and contributed to its making.  The rough-hewn stones indicated that the work was connected with my identity.

… I have built the house from the materials of the earth.  It is a house that contains, but it is also open to the world and to the spirit.  Hopefully it can be an object of delight and contemplation, not just for me, but also for all who have crossed its threshold, so that you, dear reader, may appreciate your own home in new and creative ways.


Take a moment to consider the word “home”.  Let your imagination run free and let yourself be transported to homes you have occupied, homes you have wished to occupy, homes you have left, homes you have awaiting you in the future.  Consider what home means in your interior life and notice where the interior experience or awareness of home is in sync with the structure you call home and where the two seem out of sync. Please consider posting a comment about “home” so that we might open the doors and let one another peak in.

Len Cruz, MD

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Facing Multiplicity 2010 IAAP Congress in Montreal

The International Association for Analytical Psychology’s 2010 Congress in Montreal titled “facing Multiplicity” opened its regular session yesterday.   The world appears to be facing countless tensions arising not only from diversity but the ease with which diverse forces encounter one another in the modern world.  A survey of the speaker’s topics offers a glimpse of the ideas being explored during the Congress.  There are presentations dealing with psyche, nature, and culture.  Carlo Melodia will present today on disassociation and individuation in Pirandello’s One, No-one, One Thousand.  (In Italian)  Tomorrow, Diedre Johnson speaks on “Are the Anima and Animus Worth Salvaging? gender, the ‘Erotic Other’ and the Notion of Versatility”.  “Psychotherapy in a Globalizing World”, “Healing in a Multicultural World” (a panel), “Emergent Psychic Process”, Sustaining Earth,  Sustaining Soul”, Nature or Nurture: Individuation within the Web of Relations in the Universe of Gaia” are some of the titles that caught my attention. If you are not familiar with the IAAP’s website I urge you to visit at www.iaap.org You will find articles and other resources of interest. Len Cruz, MD

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Jung’s Betrayal of Father Victor White (Catholic Priest)

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This week’s blog is the conclusion of Murray Stein’s lecture on Betrayal, given at Jungian Odyssey 2010.  In it he looks at the intense friendship and later dramatic breakup of Carl Jung and Father Victor White.

If you watch the performance of The Jung-White Letters (now available on DVD), featuring Paul Brutsche in the role of C.G. Jung and John Hill as Victor White, O.P., you will witness the trajectory of a relationship begun in the summer of 1945 just after the end of WWII with high hopes and enthusiasm for collaboration between the psychologist on the one side and the Roman Catholic theologian on the other. The arc of their collaboration and friendship rises with rapid acceleration to a zenith (around 1948), then begins to flounder when they enter into a more earnest exchange of views on the nature of God and on the Roman Catholic doctrine of evil as privatio boni (1949-1955), and finally lose its basis and falls into severe disarray and finally into a rupture around what Victor White perceived as a betrayal and Jung then responded to as an unwawarrented attack from White on his integrity. The causal agent of White’s sense of betrayal was Jung’s publication of Answer to Job. “I wonder what induced you to publish it; when you gave me the manuscript to read you were so emphatic that you would not!” (Lammers, p. 259), White writes bitterly after the book was published and translated into English. Earlier he had found the work fascinating, but when he had to answer pointed questions about its contents from his priestly colleagues and his Catholic followers and analysands, he became extremely uncomfortable and felt that Jung had cut the ground out from under him with the publication of this heterodox work.

Certainly from a Roman Catholic theological perspective rooted in the teachings of St. Thomas Aquinas, which White knew backwards and forewards and had taught to seminarians for many years, Jung’s views were completely indefensible and out of bounds. How could he, a priest, work with Catholic students and analysands, when the founder of the psychology he was using and had been advocating was putting forward a view of God and the Bible and what must be done by modern men and women that so utterly contradicted what the Church would ever condone? White found himself strangely in the position of Job when betrayed by God – the very basis of his livelihood and professional existence was pulled out from under his feet. Unlike Job, however, he vented his rage with the transference object, C.G. Jung, and separated himself from him, going his own way: “It seems that I am destined to be a wanderer & as homeless physically as I am spiritually.” (ibid.) Ironically, Jung repeated almost exactly with his Answer to Job the very thing he had been dealing with so passionately in the book itself – betrayal.

Perhaps it was inadvertant. From White’s side, it must have seemed like the betrayal of a faithful and pious man (i.e., himself) at the hands of a mistakenly idealized transference object (i.e., Jung). Jung retorted to White’s letter of accusation saying that he had never promised such a thing: “Should I set the light of such an insight ‘under a bushel’?” he cries out. (Lammers, p. 261) He was burdened with a message for humanity, which he felt was urgently needed in the time when the world was on the verge of catastrophic splitting and destruction. He was advocating for consciousness, for individual responsibility, for maturity. Only under such advances in humanity would the world survive, he felt. And White was trying to protect an illusion that robbed people of their initiative, diminished their consciousness of individual responsibility, and had been helpless to prevent the European nations from entering into two horrific wars in the 20th Century.

As Jung looked at the world, the Christian religion, as it had been presented and lived to this point in Europe, was not adequate to contain the powerful splitting tendencies at work in history. It simply hid people’s heads in the sand and foolishly let them believe that everything would come out alright in the end since a good God is in control of history. For Jung, the example of Jesus Christ taught the opposite – the image of the wholly good God is shattered by betrayal, on the cross and ends in tragedy. People have to grow up and take responsibility for history and for the planet and not wait passively for a good God to put things right. One must take a less naïve view of God. This is the message of Answer to Job.

I do believe that Victor White achieved wisdom and did not fall into cynicism as a result of his betrayal at the hands of Jung. In the end he was able to see Jung’s person more clearly, for better and for worse, without casting him utterly aside. The transference object was broken and a new consciousness had space to dawn in him. In a final exchange of letters shortly before White’s death from inoperable cancer in 1960, both men showed gratitude for what they had learned from the other. They had separated but not become antagonists or enemies. Splitting was overcome in favor of holding together the opposites and achieving object wholeness. This is the psychological basis of wisdom.

-Lammers, A. (ed.) 2005. The Jung-White Letters. London: Routledge.

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