In-Visioning the Internet: Discovering Psyche in the Electronic Sea



We are extremely pleased to bring you this incredible webinar from our dear friends at the C.G. Jung Institute of Chicago.  If film has been the screen on which psyche projects her stories for the past hundred years (as John Beebe has suggested), the Internet and other electronic media such as video games may be the screen of the present and future. Following Marshall McLuhan, the Internet is a “medium,” i.e., an externalized extension of our minds. We see and enact ourselves through it. Media are a large part of what modern culture has become, and as depth psychology remembers Jung’s life-long quest to heal his own culture it becomes a central task to see the Internet and its electronic world in depth and to look for the soul that may be hiding or trapped in it. We argue that the Internet can be poisonous or life-giving, that it can make or destroy psyche. Social media exemplify the personal psychological level of the Internet, but where is the deeper soul? We seek an answer to this vital question by first reviewing the fantasy of conscious machines (robots, etc.) traced by Victoria Nelson (2001). Viewing the recent film “Tron Legacy” (2010) mythically, we will reflect on the possibility that the virtual world may embody anima that we must work to bring back to our post-industrial culture.


Al Collins, Ph.D is a clinical and cultural psychologist with a second PhD in Indian studies. He teaches depth psychology at the Pacifica Graduate Institute and with Elaine Molchanov is editing the next issue of Spring Journal, themed “Jung and India”.

Elaine Molchanov, MSW, IAAP is a board certified clinical social worker and Jungian analyst with extensive experience working with patients who present with ADHD.

Learning Objectives:

  1. Recognize the implications of internet usage for our personal and archetypal psychology
  2. Apply the myth of conscious machine to the Internet in terms of the Internet’s attraction and demonic possibilities.
  3. Apply Marshall McLuhan’s ideas on media to Jungian culture theory, and conversely.
  4. Recognize the need to take a proactive stance towards the Internet, talk back to its mindless compulsions, and force it to be deeper and more human.


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