Through a Jungian Lens

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Marriage of Consciousness and Unconsciousness: Life

with 2 comments

Implied sunshine.  Yes, there is little doubt in looking at this image that the sun is present.  In a way, the image evokes a marriage of sun and earth in which life is born.  With birth, life races to become unique as a means of adapting to an ever changing environment.  This marriage of sun and earth is all about life, about change, about adaptation to change.  As I listen to the daily news, it is too easy to get depressed over the disasters that are buffeting the planet.  Earthquakes, tsunamis, hurricanes, torrential rains, droughts are matched with man-caused disasters such as the latest major oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico just as the hurricane season is about to get underway, a hurricane season that is predicted to be the worst on record.  Our pollution of air, water, and soil speak of our blindness to our relationship with the planet.  But, I know that in spite of what humans can do, including an all-out nuclear act of self destruction, the sun and earth will continue their journey of change.

But, it isn’t just the marriage of sun and earth that produces change.  Our collective consciousness and collective unconsciousness work to ensure the survival of the human race.  The marriage of logos and eros leads to an increased awareness which “should” help us moderate our behaviour as a species, as collective cultures.  Of course, this all must begin with the individual human, the same as it does in nature with the individual plant or animal.

Individuation is the urge in all human beings to differentiate themselves from collective or traditional patterns of self-understanding, and to make a journey peculiarly theirs, deeply personal, essentially mythic.”  (Monick, Castration and Male Rage, p. 34)

If there was no urge to individuate, humans would stay within their condition rather than risk change.  It is much simpler to go along with the collective than it is to strike out and carve a unique path.  Yet without this urge to individuate, humans would soon find themselves bypassed by the rest of life forms.  As the individual humans change, the collective changes.  Where that change is based on increased awareness that is based on the marriage of consciousness and unconsciousness, human society can help ensure its own survival.   The marriage of logos and eros will continue to gift us with “life.”

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2 Responses

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  1. “Our collective consciousness and collective unconsciousness work to ensure the survival of the human race. ”
    I hope this is right.
    I find it hard to be so hopeful.
    When I was in analysis I found Jungians rather optimistic about individual progress, but quite gloomy/pessimistic about collective progress of the human race.
    Ironically the Freudians were rather glum about how well an individual can become, yet civilization was hopeful.

    Urspo

    June 18, 2010 at 11:53 pm

    • I do have hope in spite of the darkness. But then, this is because I believe in balance, Urspo. Nature does regulate itself. My next post talks about this “balance.”

      Robert G. Longpré

      June 19, 2010 at 8:08 am


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