Through a Jungian Lens

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Phallic Symbolism And Psychological Health

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CN Tower - Toronto Ontario

I went to a football game yesterday evening with my son in downtown Toronto.  The game was an excuse for the two of us to be together for more father and son bonding.  The game itself was uneventful until the last twelve minutes of play when the team we were cheering for began to wake up from a disinterested lethargy.  While the game was going through the first thirty-eight minutes of poor play on the part of both teams, I managed to take quite a few photos of people and things that caught my eye including the CN tower that was looming above and behind my right shoulder.

In a way, it was fitting – two guys watching a sporting event that was being played by guys and a phallic symbol standing tall in the background.  As most of my readers know, I write about Jungian themes from the perspective of the masculine.  To write any other way would be writing from more of a “head” space of logos; and that, would mean that I would be writing with less of my self being included in the process.

Many if not most people think men are all about logos,  about being in our heads, and that women are all about eros, about being in their bodies and heart.  However, in the way I am coming to understand my self and the notion of being a man, I am a curious blend of both logos and eros.  I can’t deny the aspect of being in my body, about being a sexual being that experiences the world and myself outside of my head.  Most men externalize their sexuality rather than admit that their sexuality is something vibrant within their being.

As a father and as a grandfather I have seen the initial fascination by my son and grandsons as they discovered their penis.  I don’t know if there is ever a loss if wonder in a healthy male, healthy both physiologically and psychologically.  The penis is that one part of self that forces the mind to make way for that part of self that is body.  Man is a combination of masculine and feminine that needs to be brought into balance, something C.G. Jung brings to our awareness in his book, Mysterium Coniunctionis.  With balance, man is better able to relate to the outer world and others without needing to dominate or to hide.  In balance, man doesn’t need to use his penis as a weapon or to retreat into a denial of its existence.


2 Responses

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  1. do you think gay men are more in tune with the eros than straights?


    August 29, 2011 at 12:31 am

    • I would have to say “I don’t know.” And in saying this, it isn’t as though I don’t have “thought” about it. I see men on both sides of the “being in tune/not being in tune” and sense that there is more freedom to explore one’s sensual nature in those who are gay.


      August 29, 2011 at 6:17 am

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