When a man of wisdom speaks, and his words continue to ring true after more than half a century, maybe it would be a good idea to listen. This is from “A Study in the Process of Individuation,” in Carl Jung’s The Archetypes and the Collective Unconscious.
Our series of pictures illustrates the initial stages of the way of individuation. It would be desirable to know what happens afterwards. But, just as neither the philosophical gold nor the philosophers’ stone was ever made in reality, so nobody has ever been able to tell the story of the whole way, at least not to mortal ears, for it is not the storyteller but death who speaks the final “consummatum est.” Certainly there are many things worth knowing in the later stages of the process, but, from the point of view of teaching as well as of therapy, it is important not to skip to quickly over the initial stages. As these pictures are intuitive anticipations of future developments, it is worth while lingering over them for a long time, in order, with their help, to integrate so many contents of the unconscious into consciousness that the latter really does reach this stage it sees ahead. These psychic evolutions do not as a rule keep pace with the tempo of intellectual developments. Indeed, their very first goal is to bring a consciousness that has hurried too far ahead into contact again with the unconscious background with which it should be connected…. Continue reading Jung on terrorism and awareness