Jung: What would you say about a vegetarian tiger?

In 1961, Chilean diplomat and author Miguel Serrano spoke with Carl Jung for the final time, less than five months before Jung’s death. (This is from C.G. Jung Speaking.)

[MS:] I’ve also come to see Hermann Hesse. He believes that the right road is simply one which is in agreement with nature.

[CGJ:] That is also my philosophy. Man should live according to his own nature; he should concentrate on self-knowledge and then live in accordance with the truth about himself. What would you say about a tiger who was a vegetarian? You would say, of course, that he was a bad tiger. Thus everyone must live in accordance with his nature, both individually and collectively.

4 thoughts on “Jung: What would you say about a vegetarian tiger?

    1. Certainly it is true that we are not wise enough, knowledgeable enough, to judge each other. But his point was that it is up to each individual to know what his real inner nature dictates, and follow it. I believe that it was because we know the nature of tigers that Jung chose that example.

    2. The real nature of any individual is nature itself. That is his message.

      I think therefore I am, is not the way of nature. Don’t confuse his words “self-knowledge” for knowledge. He’s speaking about going beyond the mind or person. What happens when your mind is empty of unconscious thoughts?

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