Through a Jungian Lens

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At Home and Smiling

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Elrose, Canada – Full moon, September 2012

As the photo indicates, I am back in Canada, back home in Elrose, Saskatchewan. My walking pilgrimage has come to an end.

My pilgrimage began long before I left Canada in August. My motivation and need for this pilgrimage rose to the surface during my time in analysis. I didn’t fully understand it at the time, but I trusted my instincts. I knew that I had been “running” for way too many years, moving too much and too fast for any sane gypsy. I was running in my head, hoping somehow that I would be able to escape the contents of the unconscious that stubbornly refused to stay in it’s proper place hidden in the depths where it could be properly forgotten and denied. Analysis became a dance between analyst and analysand. I knew too much about the process and so the dance became more of a stalemate with neither one of us willing to give up the lead. That said, analysis did bring me more focus as I worked through dreams with my analyst. But deep down, I knew that I needed to do something that would finally break down my resistance and allow my psyche to emerge.  Yet, I was afraid of what else might emerge. I knew that what was hidden and denied was filled with shadows, darkness, the source of my anxiety and fears. What I didn’t want to admit was the fact that there were other things hidden as well, enough things of the light, things that spoke to the positive of my existence. I intellectually knew all of this, but my fear simply scoffed at this intellectual knowledge.

As the idea of a pilgrimage began to gather strength, I began to have some hope that the walking would somehow break the bonds of my self-imposed prison in an inner darkness. For too long I had been dancing on the edges of black holes, daring the descent into madness. I was tired of it all; I was tired of seeing how my depression and silence was bringing grief to those whom I loved and who loved me as husband, father and grandfather. But of course, I had to disguise all of this with a story that I was walking to Santiago, Spain. I was heading out for adventure. I knew better, but it didn’t matter, I needed to tell myself this lie in order to find the courage to actually begin the process.

And so the walking has happened and something happened along the way. I began the walk as though I was being chased by demons, ghosts and unnameable dark shadows. I walked with fierce determination, always checking behind me to see if they were catching up to me. I walked and walked until my body demanded some relief. I ignored my body for the most part, and the physical pain increased to the point where the last part of each day’s walk were more about hobbling than walking with my feet on fire and my hips and knees begging for mercy. Yet, I refused to give in.  I was on a mission.

And then one evening in a cathedral in southern France, I emotionally broke down and let the barriers fall. Another two days of walking, walking with my head up and smiling, I knew it was done. It was time to return home and rejoin my family which had spent the time I was in France as if they were in mourning. I knew that to walk further would only hurt them needlessly. The pilgrimage wasn’t about Santiago, it was about healing. It was time to go home.

I will continue to write from my journal, here. I will trace the physical journey and the journey of my psyche so that you can come to understand just how it all came about. It is good to be home and to be smiling.


2 Responses

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  1. Dear Friend,

    It is to read about your experiences and above all that you experienced your goal and to read that you are safely back home again.

    In the whole – next to your experience in the cathedral in the South of France – I think that it could be also a great thing to experience of how things really worked out.

    What I mean to say is : We as humans are inclined to “think” in the way that we are accustomed to (I like to call this blind thinking) – in that manner of thinking your journey started when you put your feet on French soil.
    But, as you wrote, you’re “Psychic Intention” for your journey started from the moment that you became aware of your intention – and that was months before the physical journey.

    Probably when you continued your journey with blind thinking your body would be terrible damaged, if not worse !

    Because of your possibility to change your way of thinking, you were able to become aware of signs that you reached the goal of your intention.
    This could be a indication that long before something is “materialized” things are already accomplished on the psychic planes.

    Opa Bear

    October 1, 2012 at 6:49 am

    • This is a new way of thinking and responding for me. Often I responded without thinking, more of a patterned response. Now, if anything, I catch myself and allow thinking an opportunity. It’s a strange new world for me. Thank you, dear friend.


      October 2, 2012 at 6:57 pm

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