Quotes Related to Jungian and Depth Psychology,
includes at least one source wherever possible.
We will be adding to this page almost regularly so please check back for more.
All efforts have been made to ensure correctness but it is not guaranteed.
*CW = Collected Works
C. G. JUNG
“The ultimate goal of Jungian psychotherapy is to make the symbolic process conscious” ~ Edward Edinger, Ego and Archetype, p. 113
“Science has destroyed even the refuge of the inner life. What was once a sheltering haven has become a place of terror” ~ C.G. Jung, Modern Man in Search of Soul, p. 205
”Like the sea itself, the unconscious yields an endless and self-replenishing abundance of creatures, a wealth beyond our fathoming.” ~C.G. Jung (1966). “The Psychology of the Transference,” in The Collected Works of C.G. Jung, vol. 16, The Practice of Psychotherapy. Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press, p. 178.
"The great events of world history are, at bottom, profoundly unimportant. In the last analysis, the essential thing is the life of the individual. This alone makes history, here alone do the great transformations first take place, and the whole future, the whole history of the world, ultimately spring as a gigantic summation from these hidden sources in individuals. In our most private and most subjective lives we are not only the passive witnesses of our age, and it sufferers, but also its makers. We make our own epoch." ~ C.G. Jung, 1934, Collected Works 10, para. 315
"I have called this centre the Self. Intellectually, the Self is no more than a psychological concept, a construct that serves to express an unknowable essence which we cannot grasp as such, since by definition it transcends our powers of comprehension. It might equally be called "the God within us." The beginnings of our whole psychic life seem to be inextricably rooted in this point, and all our highest and ultimate purposes seem to be striving toward it. This paradox is unavoidable, as always, when we try to define something that lies beyond the bourn of our understanding. ~Jung, from "On the Archetype of the Self," CW 7, par. 398-405
“I use the term ‘individuation’ to denote the process by which a person becomes a psychological ‘in-dividual,’ that is, a separate, indivisible unity or ‘whole.’ ”~Jung, "The Archetypes and the Collective Unconscious," CW 9.i, p. 275.
"The Self then functions as a union of opposites and thus constitutes the most immediate experience of the Divine which it is psychologically possible to imagine" ~ C.G. Jung, Collected Works, Vol. 11, para. 396
"The self is defined psychologically as the psychic totality of the individual. Anything that a [person] postulates as being a greater totality than [oneself] can become a symbol of the self. For this reason the symbol of the self is not always as total as the definition would require." ~C.G. Jung, from "A Psychological Approach to the Trinity" in CW 11, para. 232.
“Meaninglessness inhibits the fullness of life and is therefore equivalent to illness. Meaning makes a great many things endurable—perhaps everything.” —C.G. Jung, Memories, Dreams, Reflections, p. 340
“The self is not only the centre but also the whole circumference which embraces both conscious and unconscious; it is the centre of this totality, just as the ego is the centre of consciousness.” ~Jung, "Psychology and Alchemy," CW 12, para. 44.
"The term "self" seems a suitable one for the unconscious substrate whose actual exponent in consciousness is the ego. The ego stands to the self as the moved to the mover, or as object to subject, because the determining factors that radiate outward from the self surround the ego on all sides and are therefore supraordinate to it. The self, like the unconscious, as an a priori existent out of which the ego evolves. It is, so to speak, an unconscious prefiguration of the ego. It is not I who create myself; rather, I happen to myself." ~C.G. Jung, from "Transformation Symbolism in the Mass" in CW 11, para. 391.
“… it is not possible to maintain any non-psychological doctrine about the gods. If the historical process of world despiritualization continues as hitherto, then everything of a divine or daemonic character out side us must return to the psyche, to the inside of the unknown man, whence it apparently originated.” ~Jung, “The History and Psychology of a Natural Symbol”, Collected Works Vol. 11
"...we seldom find anybody who is not influenced and indeed dominated by desires, habits, impulses, prejudices, resentments, and by every conceivable kind of complex. All these natural facts function exactly like an Olympus full of deities who want to be propitiated, served, feared and worshipped, not only by the individual owner of this assorted pantheon, but by everybody in his vicinity.” ~C. G. Jung, “The History and Psychology of a Natural Symbol”, Collected Works, vol. 11
"The serious problems of life, however, are never fully solved. If it should for once appear that they are, this is the sign that something has been lost. The meaning and design of a problem seem not to lie in its solution, but in our working at it incessantly."
—C.G. Jung, Modern Man in Search of a Soul, [Kindle edition], p. 103
“… the individual imagines that he has caught the [unconscious] psyche and holds her in the hollow of his hand. He is even making a science of her in the absurd supposition that the intellect, which is but a part and a function of the psyche, is sufficient to comprehend the much greater whole. In reality the psyche is the mother and the maker, the subject and even the possibility of consciousness itself. It reaches so far beyond the boundaries of consciousness that the latter could easily be compared to an island in the ocean. Whereas the island is small and narrow, the ocean is immensely wide and deep and contains a life infinitely surpassing, in kind and degree, anything known on the island so that if it is a question of space, it does not matter whether the gods are ‘inside’ or ‘outside.’” ~C.G. Jung (citation needed - if you know this, please email us)
“No matter what the world thinks about religious experience, the one who has it possesses a great treasure, a thing that has become for him a source of life, meaning, and beauty, and that has given a new splendor to the world and to mankind.” ~C. G. Jung “Psychology and Religion”, CW 11: para.167
"The difference between the "natural" individuation process, which runs its course unconsciously, and the one that is consciously realized is tremendous. In the first case, consciousness nowhere intervenes; the end remains as dark as the beginning. In the second case, so much darkness comes to light that the personality is permeated with light and consciousness necessarily gains in scope and insight. The encounter between conscious and unconscious has to ensure that the light that shines in the darkness is not only comprehended by the darkness, but comprehends it." ~ Jung, from "Answer to Job" in CW 11, para. 756.
"Self-reflection, or - what comes to the same thing - the urge to individuation, gathers together what is scattered and multifarious and exalts it to the original of the One, the Primordial Man. In this way our existence as separate beings, our former ego nature, is abolished, the circle of consciousness is widened, and because the paradoxes have been made conscious, the sources of conflict are dried up." ~Jung, from "Transformation Symbolism in the Mass" in CW 11, para. 401.
"It is also possible for the unconscious or an archetype to take complete possession of a man and to determine his fate down to the smallest detail" ~ C.G. Jung, Psychology and Religion, Collected Works, Vol. 11, p. 409
"There are as many archetypes as there are typical situations in life. Endless repetition has engraved these experiences into our psychic constitution, not in the forms of images filled with content, but at first only as forms without content, representing merely the possibility of a certain type of perception and action." ~ C.G. Jung, ‘The Concept of the Collective Unconscious’ Collected Works Vol. 9, part 1, 1936/1980, para. 99
"By a symbol I do not mean an allegory or a sign, but an image that describes in the best possible way the dimly discerned nature of the spirit. A symbol does not define or explain; it points beyond itself to a meaning that is darkly divined yet still beyond our grasp, and cannot be adequately expressed in the familiar words of our language." ~ C.G. Jung, Spirit and Life, Collected Works Vol. 8, 1926, para 644
The psychological rule says that when an inner situation is not made conscious, it happens outside, as fate. That is to say, when the individual remains undivided and does not become conscious of his inner opposite, the world must perforce act out the conflict and be torn into opposing halves." ~C.G. Jung, Christ, A Symbol of the Self, Paragraph 126, Collected Words 9, Pt 2.
"The symbols of the self arise in the depths of the body, and they express its materiality every bit as much as the perceiving consciousness. The symbol is thus a living body" ~Jung, from "The Psychology of the Child Archetype" in CW 9.1, para. 291.
“Life is teleology par excellence; it is the intrinsic striving towards a goal, and the living organism is a system of directed aims which seek to fulfill themselves.” ~C.G. Jung, CW 8, par. 798
"A dream that is not understood remains a mere occurrence; understood, it becomes a living experience." ~C.G. Jung CW 16: 252
"You see, man is in need of a symbolic life - badly in need. We only live banal, ordinary, rational, or irrational things . . . but we have no symbolic life. Where do we live symbolically? Nowhere except where we participate in the ritual of life. . . .
Have you got a corner somewhere in your house where you perform the rites, as you can see in India? Even the very simple houses there have at least a curtained corner where the members of the household can perform the symbolic life, where they can make their new vows or their meditation. We don't have it; we have no such corner. We have our own room, of course, - but there is a telephone that can ring us up at any time, and we always must be ready. We have no time, no place.
We have no symbolic life, and we are all badly in need of the symbolic life. Only the symbolic life can express the need of the soul - the daily need of the soul, mind you! And because people have no such thing, they can never step out of this mill - this awful, banal, grinding life in which they are "nothing but." . . . Everything is banal; everything is "nothing but," and that is the reason why people are neurotic. They are simply sick of the whole thing, sick of that banal life, and therefore they want sensation. They even want a war; they all want a war; they are all glad when there is a war; they say, "Thank heaven, now something is going to happen - something bigger than ourselves!"
These things go pretty deep, and no wonder people get neurotic. Life is too rational; there is no symbolic existence in which I am something else, in which I am fulfilling my role, my role as one of the actors in the divine drama of life." ~Jung, "The Symbolic Life," A seminar talk given by Carl Jung in 1939 to the Guild for Pastoral Psychology, London
“Although everything is experienced in image form, i.e., symbolically, it is by no means a question of fictitious dangers but of very real risks upon which the fate of a whole life may depend. The chief danger is that of succumbing to the fascinating influence of the archetypes, and this is most likely to happen when the archetypal images are not made conscious. If there is already a predisposition to psychosis, it may even happen that the archetypal figures, which are endowed with a certain autonomy anyway on account of their natural numinosity, will escape from conscious control altogether and become completely independent, thus producing the phenomena of possession.“ ~Jung, “Archetypes of the Collective Unconscious”, Collected Works Vol. 9
"In all chaos there is a cosmos, in all disorder a secret order... we are caught and entangled in aimless experience... It is a moment of collapse... Only when all crutches and props are broken, and no cover from the rear offers even the slightest hope of security, does it become possible for us to experience an archetype that up till then had lain hidden... this is the archetype of meaning..." ~C.G. Jung, The Archetypes and The Collective Unconscious, CW 9 Part 1, p. 32
"Since psyche and matter are contained in one and the same world, and moreover are in continuous contact with one another and ultimately rest on irrepresentable, transcendental factors, it is not only possible but fairly probable, even, that psyche and matter are two different aspects of the same thing." ~ C.G. Jung, On the Nature of the Psyche, Collected Works Vol. 8, para. 418
“The decisive question for man is: Is he related to something infinite or not? That is the telling question of his life. Only if we know that the thing which truly matters is the infinite can we avoid fixing our interests upon futilities, and upon all kinds of goals which are not of real importance. … If we understand and feel that here in this life we already have a link with the infinite, desires and attitudes change.” ~ C.G. Jung, Memories, Dreams, Reflections, 1961, pp. 356-7
"As far as we can discern, the sole purpose of human existence is to kindle a light of meaning in the darkness of mere being." ~ C.G. Jung, Memories, Dreams, Reflections, 1961, p. 326
“The psychic depths are nature, and nature is creative life.” ~ C.G. Jung, Modern Man in Search of Soul, p. 220
"Though synchronistic phenomena occur in time and space they manifest a remarkable independence of both these indispensable determinants of physical existence and hence do not conform to the law of causality. The causalism that underlies our scientific view of the world breaks everything down into individual processes which it punctiliously tries to isolate from all other parallel processes. This tendency is absolutely necessary if we are to gain reliable knowledge of the world, but philosophically it has the disadvantage of breaking up, or obscuring, the universal interrelationship of events so that a recognition of the greater relationship, i.e. of the unity of the world, becomes more and more difficult." ~C.G. Jung, Collected Works 14, included in The Essential Jung, p. 293
"Anyone who wants to know the human mind will learn next to nothing from experimental psychology. He would be better advised to put away his scholar's gown, bid farewell to his study, and wander with human heart through the world. There, in the horrors of prisons, lunatic asylums and hospitals, in drab suburban pubs, in brothels and gambling-hells, in the salons of the elegant, the Stock Exchanges, Socialist meetings, churches, revivalist gatherings and ecstatic sects, through love and hate, through the experience of passion in every form in his own body, he would reap richer stores of knowledge than text-books a foot thick could give him, and he will know how to doctor the sick with real knowledge of the human soul." ~ C.G. Jung, "New Paths in Psychology" In CW 7: Two Essays on Analytical Psychology. p. 409
"Dreams . . . are pure nature; they show us the unvarnished, natural truth, and are therefore fitted, as nothing else is, to give us back an attitude that accords with our basic human nature when our consciousness has strayed too far from its foundations and run into an impasse ~C. G. Jung, "The Meaning of Psychology for Modern Man" (1933). In CW 10: Civilization in Transition. p. 317
Impressive ideas which are hailed as truths have something peculiar about them. Although they come into being at a definite time, they are and have always been timeless; they arise from that realm of creative psychic life out of which the ephemeral mind of the single human being grows like a plant that blossoms, bears fruit and seed, and then withers and dies. Ideas spring from something greater than the personal human being. Man does not make his ideas; we could say that man's ideas make him. ~ C.G. Jung, "Freud and Jung: Contrasts" (1929) In CW 4: Freud and Psychoanalysis, p. 769
"He who is rooted in the soil endures. Alienation from the unconscious and from its historical conditions spells rootlessness. That is the danger that lies in wait for the conqueror of foreign lands, and for every individual who, through one-sided allegiance to any kind of -ism, loses touch with the dark, maternal, earthy ground of his being". - C.G. Jung, "Mind and Earth" (1927). In CW Vol. 10: Civilization in Transition, p. 103
"Whenever we touch nature we get clean. People who have got dirty through too much civilization take a walk in the woods, or a bath in the sea. They shake off the fetters and allow nature to touch them. It can be done within or without. Walking in the woods, lying on the grass, taking a bath in the sea, are from the outside; entering the unconscious, entering yourself through dreams, is touching nature from the inside and this is the same thing, things are put right again." (Jung, Dream Analysis: Notes on a Lecture Given in 1928-1930).
There are as many archetypes as there are typical situations in life. Endless repetition has engraved these experiences into our psychic constitution, not in the form of images filled with content, but at first only as forms without content, representing only the possibility of a certain type of perception or action.” (Italics in original) ~ C.G. Jung, The Concept of the Collective Unconscious’ Collected Works 9, part 1, para. 99)
"Deep inside us is a wilderness. We call it the unconscious because we can't control it fully, so we can't will to create what we want from it. The collective unconscious is a great wild region where we can get in touch with the sources of life." ~CG Jung
The deeper "layers" of the psyche lose their individual uniqueness as they retreat farther and farther into darkness. "Lower down," that is to say as they approach the autonomous functional systems, they become increasingly collective until they are universalized and extinguished in the body's materiality, i.e., in chemical substances. The body's carbon is simply carbon. Hence "at bottom" the psyche is simply "world." ~ C.G. Jung, "The Psychology of the Child Archetype" (1940), In CW, Vol. 9, Part I: The Archetypes and the Collective Unconscious, p. 291
“The psyche is not of today; its ancestry goes back many millions of years. Individual consciousness is only the flower and the fruit of a season sprung from the perennial rhizome beneath the earth; and it would find itself in better accord with the truth if it took the existence of the rhizome into its calculations. For the root matter is the mother of all things (C.G. Jung, Symbols of Transformation, Collected Works Vol. 5, p. xxiv
Aren't we the carriers of the entire history of mankind? . . . When a man is fifty years old, only one part of his being has existed for half a century. The other part which also lives in his psyche, may be millions of years old ... Contemporary man is but the latest ripe fruit on the tree of the human race. None of us knows what we know ~ C. G. Jung, C.G. Jung Speaking: Interviews & Encounters, 1977, pp. 57-58
“These unconscious factors owe their existence to the autonomy of the archetypes. Modern man protects himself against seeing his own split state by a system of compartments. Certain areas of outer life and of his own behavior are kept, as it were, in separate drawers and are never confronted with one another.” ~ C.G. Jung, Man and his Symbols, p. 72
“I can only gaze with wonder and awe at the depths of and heights of our psychic nature. Its non-spatial universe conceals an untold abundance of images which have accumulated over millions of years of living development and become fixed in the organism….Beside this picture I would like to place the spectacle of the starry heavens at night, for the only equivalent of the universe within is the universe without; and just as I reach this world through the medium of the body, so I reach that world through the medium of the psyche.” ~ C.G. Jung, CW Vol. 4, para 764
Our intellect has created a new world that dominates nature, and has populated it with monstrous machines. The latter are so indubitably useful that we cannot see even a possibility of getting rid of them or our subservience to them. Man is bound to follow the adventurous promptings of his scientific and inventive mind and to admire himself for his splendid achievements. At the same time, his genius shows the uncanny tendency to invent things that become more and more dangerous, because they represent better and better means for wholesale suicide. (pp. 90-91)
~C. G. Jung, "Approaching the unconscious," in Man and his symbols, 1964, Dell.
"Take for comparison the daily course of the sun-but a sun that is endowed with human feeling and man's limited consciousness. In the morning it rises from the nocturnal sea of unconsciousness and looks upon the wide, bright world which lies before it in an expanse that steadily widens the higher it climbs in the firmament. In this extension of its field of action caused by its own rising, the sun will discover its significance; it will see the attainment of the greatest possible height, and the widest possible dissemination of its blessings, as its goal. In this conviction the sun pursues its course to the unforeseen zenith-unforeseen, because its career is unique and individual, and the culminating point could not be calculated in advance. At the stroke of noon the descent begins. And the descent means the reversal of all the ideals and values that were cherished in the morning. ~ "The Stages of Life" (1930). In CW Vol. 8: The Structure and Dynamics of the Psyche, p. 778
"Every individual needs revolution, inner division, overthrow of the existing order, and renewal, but not by forcing these things upon his neighbours under the hypocritical cloak of Christian love or the sense of social responsibility or any of the other beautiful euphemisms for unconscious urges to personal power. Individual self-reflection, return of the individual to the ground of human nature, to his own deepest being with its individual and social destiny here is the beginning of a cure for that blindness which reigns at the present hour." ~ C.G. Jung, "On the Psychology of the Unconscious" (1912). In CW 7: Two Essays on Analytical Psychology, p. 5
“There are two reasons why man loses contact with the regulating center of his soul. One of them is that some single instinctive drive or emotional image can carry him into a one-sidedness that makes him lose his balance…his one-sidedness and consequent loss of balance are much dreaded by primitives, who call it ‘loss of soul.’ Another threat…circles around particular complexes” C.G. Jung, Man and his Symbols, pp 228-229
"The facts of nature cannot in the long run be violated. Penetrating and seeping through everything like water, they will undermine any system that fails to take account of them, and sooner or later they will bring about its downfall. But an authority wise enough in its statesmanship to give sufficient free play to nature - of which spirit is a part - need fear no premature decline."~ C.G. Jung, Collected Works Vol. 16, para. 227
“Life calls us forth to independence, and anyone who does not heed this call because of childish laziness or timidity is threatened with neurosis. And once this has broken out, it becomes an increasingly valid reason for running away from life…” ~ C.G. Jung, CW 5, para. 461
"When you observe the world you see people, you see houses, you see the sky, you see tangible objects; but when you observe yourself within, you see moving images--a world of images, generally known as fantasies. Yet these fantasies are facts. You see, it is a fact that the man has such and such a fantasy, and it is such a tangible fact, for instance, that when a man has a certain fantasy, another man may lose his life, or a bridge is built--these houses were all fantasies. Everything you do here, all of the houses, everything, was fantasy to begin with, and fantasy has a proper reality. That is not to be forgotten; fantasy is not nothing. It is, of course, not a tangible object, but it is a fact, nevertheless. It is, you see, a form of energy, despite the fact that we can't measure it. It is a manifestation of something, and that is a reality. That is just a reality. As for instance, the peace treaty of Versailles, or something like that. It is no more--you can't show it, but it has been a fact. And so psychical events are facts, are realities; and when you observe the stream of images within, you observe an aspect of the world, of the world within." ~Carl Jung, from Jung on Elementary Psychology: A Discussion between C. G. Jung and Richard I. Evans, 1976, pg. 190.
"Psychology is ultimately mythology, the study of the stories of the soul." ~James Hillman, in The Life and Ideas of James Hillman, p. 576
"I think of mythology as a function of biology; the energies of the body are the energies that move the imagination. These energies are the source, then, of mythological imagery; in a mythological organization of symbols, the conflicts between the different organic impulses within the body are resolved and harmonized. You might say mythology is a formula for the harmonization of the energies of life."
“Synchronistic events, moreover, almost invariably accompany the crucial phases of the process of individuation. But too often they pass unnoticed, because the individual has not learned to watch for such coincidences and to make them meaningful in relation to the symbolism of his dreams.”
“Our dream life creates a meandering pattern in which individual strands or tendencies become visible, then vanish, then return again. If one watches this meandering design over a long period of time, one can observe a sort of hidden regulating or directing tendency at work, creating a slow, imperceptible process of psychic growthundefinedthe process of individuation.”~Marie-Louise von Franz, Man and His Symbols, p. 161.
“Creative insights come at the raw and tender edge of confrontation, at the borderlines where we are most sensitive and exposedundefinedand curiously, most alone. To meet you I must risk myself as I am.” ~James Hillman, in The Life and Ideas of James Hillman, p. 578
“Reading life backward enables you to see how early obsessions are the sketchy preformation of behaviors now . . . Reading backward means that growth is less the key biological term than form, and that development only makes sense when it reveals a facet of the original image” ~James Hillman, The Soul’s Code, p. 7
The growth of individuality and its development are mankind’s answer to the “perils of the soul” that threaten from within, and to the “perils of the world” that threaten from without Magic and religion, art, science, and technics are man’s creative efforts to cope with this threat on two fronts. At the center of all these endeavors stands the creative individual as the hero, who in the name of the collective—even when he is lonely figure standing out against it—molds it into shape by molding himself.” — Erich Neumann, The Origins and History of Consciousness, p. 221
"Even to think that we are separated from Nature is somehow a thinking disorder. You cannot be separated from Nature. Why we think that way is the interesting thing." ~ James Hillman, in the 2007 film, The 11th Hour, narrated by Leonardo DiCaprio
"Panic, especially at night when the citadel darkens and the heroic ego sleeps, is a direct participation mystique in nature, a fundamental, even ontological experience of the world as alive and in dread. Objects become subjects; they move with life while one is oneself paralyzed with fear. When existence is experienced through instinctual levels of fear, aggression, hunger or sexuality, images take on a compelling life of their own. The imaginal is never more vivid than when we are connoted with it instinctually. The world alive is of course animism; that this living world is divine and imaged by different gods with attributes and characteristics is polytheistic pantheism. That fear, dread, horror are natural is wisdom. In [Alfred North] Whitehead's term 'nature alive' means Pan, and panic flings open a door into this reality" ~ James Hillman (in A Blue Fire, p. 98—also in "Pan", 33)
"As Jung said, “image is psyche,” so where else hear what soul wants than in the images that intimately speak to our psychic conditions. Moreover, these are the voices of the underworld, those of below, the inferiores who speak sotto voce, and this underworld is the preeminent place of soul … The inferiores are the daimones who inhabit the lower regions — shadow is the psychological term, and we are brought low, humiliated, shamed when these figures speak their wants. This, not so much because they urge dirty doings, but because we have hidden them away, treated them shamefully, humiliating them by not listening, little caring about the lower reaches of our psychic society.
.. The method of inquiry (or conversing with these inferior images, or engaging in active inferior imagining), is like writing fiction. sometimes it is even called “creative fantasy.” The genre comes closest to Bildungsroman: an instructive account of many encounters through with the author is educated -undefined here by the soul." ~James Hillman, Healing Fiction, pp. 92-3
"Myths are a function of nature as well as of culture…as necessary to the balanced maturation of the human psyche as is the nourishment to the body” ~Joseph Campbell, Flight of the Wild Gander, p. xi
"Throughout the inhabited world, in all times and under every circumstance, the myths of man have flourished; and they have been the living inspiration of whatever else may have appeared out of the activities of the human body and mind. It would not be too much to say that myth is the secret opening through which the inexhaustible energies of the cosmos pour into human cultural manifestation. Religions, philosophies, arts, the social forms of primitive and historic man, prime discoveries in science and technology, the very dreams that blister sleep, boil up from the basic, magic ring of myth."
—Joseph Campbell, The Hero with a Thousand Faces, p. 269
‘We live in a state of tension between two realitiesundefinedthe world, which confines us to latitude, longitude and duration, endangers our existence, temps us with hopes of happiness, and demands our obedience to its laws; and the supernatural state of being hidden within us and towards which, even unknowingly, we yearn” (Karlfried, Graf Durckheim, The Way of Transformation: Daily Life as Spiritual Practice, p 7).
"One of the symptoms of alienation in the modern age is the widespread sense of meaninglessness. Many patients seek psychotherapy...because they feel that life has no meaning....These people are experiencing the disrupting effects not only of an unsatisfactory childhood experience, but also of an upheaval occasioned by a major cultural transition. We seem to be passing through a collective psychological reorientation equivalent In magnitude to the emergence of Christianity from the ruins of the Roman empire. Accompanying the decline of traditional religion there is increasing evidence of a general psychic disorientation. We have lost our bearings. Our relation to life has become ambiguous. The great symbol system which is organized Christianity seems no longer able to command the full commitment of man or to fulfill their ultimate needs. The result is a pervasive feeling of meaninglessness and alienation from life. Whether or not a new collective religious symbol will emerge remains to be seen.
"When viewed through a mythological lens, trauma is perceived as a descent of the soul, a dropping or falling down. It is sometimes experienced as a sudden violent attack in which one is pulled down or an agonizing loss of soul too overwhelming for consciousness to contain...It calls for an enlargement of consciousness, which is a potentially transformative psychological and spiritual experience, although it comes ast a high price. As Jung wrote to Victor Whiite, 'I wanted the proof of a living Spirit and I got it. Don't ask me at what price.'"~from Trauma and Beyond: The Mystery of Transformation by Ursula Wirtz, p. 117
“By postulating a creative principle at the beginning of his creation myths and placing these at the beginning of the world, man experienced his own—and by projection, God’s—creativeness long before the idea of creative evolution was discovered.” — Erich Neumann, The Origins and History of Consciousness, p. 303
“The only thing that makes life possible is permanent, intolerable uncertainty; not knowing what comes next.”—Ursula K. LeGuin
“The shadow, which is in conflict with the acknowledged values, cannot be accepted a negative part of one’s own psyche and is therefore projected—that is, it is transferred to the outside world and experienced as an outside object. It is combated, punished, and exterminated as ‘the alien out there’ instead of being dealt with a ‘one’s own inner problem’. —Erich Neumann, Depth Psychology and a New Ethic, p. 50
Quotes on Dreams and DreamWork
“A dream is a theatre in which the dreamer is himself the scene, the player, the prompter, the producer, the author, the public, and the critic.”—C.G. Jung, The Structure and Dynamics of the Psyche, Collected Works Volume 8, para. 509
"As a plant produces its flower, so the psyche creates its symbols. Every dream is evidence of this process. Thus, through dreams, intuitions, impulses, and other spontaneous happenings, instinctive forces influence the activity of consciousness."—C.G. Jung
“Every dream image symbolizes something psychic in the dreamer.” —Marie Louise von Franz, Dreams, p. 28
“In sleep, fantasy takes the form of dreams. But in waking life too, we continue to dream beneath the threshold of consciousness, especially when under the influence of repressed or other unconscious complexes.”— Carl Jung
"There is a Secret One inside us; the planets in all the galaxies pass through Her hands like beads. That is a string of beads one should look at with luminous eyes."—Kabul
Dreams give information about the secrets of the inner life and reveal to the dreamer hidden factors of his personality. As long as these are undiscovered, they disturb his waking life and betray themselves only in the form of symptoms. —C.G. Jung, Modern Man in Search of Soul, p. 16
“In Dream Tending, the world of dream is the world of the soul. The more you work with the dream the more you are stunned by the memory, knowledge of the future, subtlety of emotion, and hidden knowledge that is in the image. The power of it is that it brings you together; it rings a bell right through your psyche and your body. You may have thought something was going on in conscious life but the dream will be telling you the unconscious response from the soul position and it may be quite different from what you anticipated.” —Marion Woodman, Dreams: Language of the Soul
"Nature is always dreaming, unfolding herself in each moment. We, also, dream—each day imagining ourselves into our own inner nature. In the meeting place between natures, a window and we are deeply touched. We remember, for a time, our psychic inheritance, an endowment rooted most essentially in the rhythms of nature." -- Stephen Aizenstat
"Each morning, we return from the dream soul trying to adjust to the day world, that moment when the two souls exchange places in the driver’s seat."—James Hillman
“The more you work with your dreams and your unconscious, and honor it, the more you understand it and it understands you. When you develop a relationship with your psyche this way, you begin to carry that energy into life and your relationships” --Marion Woodman
Jung understood all dreams…as inner dramas in which we, the dreamers, are ourselves the actors, the scenery and the spectators. — Marie Louise von Franz, Dreams, p. 28
“The only events in my life worth telling are those when the imperishable world irrupted into this transitory one That is why I speak chiefly of inner experiences, amongst which I include my dreams and visions.” ——C.G. Jung, quoted by Marie Louise von Franz, Dreams, p. 21
“Animals wake up the imagination….I’ve found that animal dreams can do this too. They really wake people up. Animal dreams provoke their feelings, get them thinking, interested, and curious. As we get more into imagining, we become more animal-like…more instinctually alive.” —James Hillman, Dream Animals, p. 2