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Randy Fertel

ABSTRACT

Understanding The Red Book as an improvisation and Jung as an improviser offers a new approach to understanding the active imagination and the analytic method that emerged from it. Such an approach uncovers the mētic spirit – the spirit of polytropic intelligence – that informs The Red Book and the archetypal figure of Hermes/Mercurius/Trickster that informs all improvisations and will come to dominate Jung’s career. The rhetoric of improvisation in The Red Book conveys that, uncontaminated by the directed consciousness or ego, personae and imagoes arise spontaneously from his unconscious and control him, not he them. Such gestures privilege non-rational ways of making art and knowing the self and world, part and parcel of the paradigm shift that characterizes the 20th century. Jung’s Red Book is on the leading edge of that effort to shift from objective rationality to a rationality that can embrace subjective elements: the unconscious and the irrational, not just the “broad highways” but also the “back alleys” of human experience.

Helena Bassil-Morozow

ABSTRACT

Loki, one of the most mischievous of the Norse gods, is a classic Trickster figure. This mythological character is difficult to define but is an archetype that Jung himself explored. The Trickster can be understood not only as a part of the Jungian individuation process, but also, from an anthropological perspective, as a metaphor for change, embodying the dynamics between the personal and the systemic. Mythological narratives featuring Loki portray him as a figure that frequently challenges the civilising forces of society, a challenge that can lead to either destruction or renewal for the society in question. More recently, however, the character of Loki has been revived as part of a Hollywood film franchise featuring a number of the comic book giant Marvel’s characters. This highly profitable enterprise, includes contemporary versions of other members of the Norse pantheon including Thor, Odin and Frigg, but Loki, as played by Tom Hiddleston, has proved a particularly popular character with the fans. This paper examines the history of Loki in the Icelandic Edda as well as the Hollywood commodification of the character in order to explore the psychological importance of the Trickster for the contemporary individual.

Martyna Chrzescijanska

ABSTRACT

This paper aims to discuss a relation between the theme of sacrifice in Ancient Greece and in the Jungian understanding of the process of individuation and other similar models of personality/self-development. My argument claims that models such as the process of individuation, Post-Traumatic Growth or Positive Disintegration share features on a structural level with a specific model of sacrifice. A special focus will be on eniautos daimon, the Year-King or a spirit of the year, a concept popularized in anthropology at the beginning of the twentieth century which I claim had influence on developing Jung’s theory of individuation. In this paper, I will apply a philosophical analysis to models of psychotherapy, and especially Jungian psychology. The philosophical analysis of models allows to indicate structural similarities between them without claiming anything about their accuracy.

Habits in Mind

Integrating Theology, Philosophy, and the Cognitive Science of Virtue, Emotion, and Character Formation

Series:

Edited by Gregory R. Peterson, James van Slyke, Michael Spezio and Kevin Reimer

The language of habit plays a central role in traditional accounts of the virtues, yet it has received only modest attention among contemporary scholars of philosophy, psychology, and religion. This volume explores the role of both “mere habits” and sophisticated habitus in the moral life. Beginning with an essay by Stanley Hauerwas and edited by Gregory R. Peterson, James A. Van Slyke, Michael L. Spezio, and Kevin S. Reimer, the volume explores the history of the virtues and habit in Christian thought, the contributions that psychology and neuroscience make to our understanding of habitus, freedom, and character formation, and the relation of habit and habitus to contemporary philosophical and theological accounts of character formation and the moral life.

Contributors are: Joseph Bankard, Dennis Bielfeldt, Craig Boyd, Charlene Burns, Mark Graves, Brian Green, Stanley Hauerwas, Todd Junkins, Adam Martin, Darcia Narvaez, Gregory R. Peterson, Kevin S. Reimer, Lynn C. Reimer, Michael L. Spezio, Kevin Timpe, and George Tsakiridis.

Stanton Marlan

ABSTRACT

This paper challenges Wolfgang Giegerich’s sometimes sophisticated and at other times sophistic notion of absolute negative interiority. In contrast to his uroboric view of ‘psychology proper’, this author resists the successionist ideas of a post-Jungian, trans-human perspective and asserts the notion of an unassimilable and unsurmountable ‘not’. In this paper, the author revisions the traditional divide between Kant and Hegel, taking the ‘thing-in-itself’ as truly other than existing only for consciousness and arguing against privileging the unity of unity and difference. This paper entertains the alchemical ideas of a residue, a caput mortuum, and an archetypally cumbersome object, a real limit, which remains and unhinges the elevating process of spirit on its path to return to itself in absolute interiority. Rather, it acknowledges an abyss ‘behind the back of consciousness’, a non-reified living unconscious – a dark light, an absolute that is not absolute, but rather a gateway back to the beyond, at the root of imagination, wonder, and transformation.

Leanne Whitney

ABSTRACT

Jung, a self-proclaimed empiricist, resisted all metaphysical claims. Nevertheless his depth psychology hypothesized an unconscious agent, which we can never know directly. As a means of healing he implores us to loosen our resistance to the unconscious, for when ego-consciousness develops and maintains a relationship to the unconscious, human beings make the Creator conscious of His creation. Although not explicit in his theories, both the ego and the unconscious are more than psychological concepts for Jung; they are ontically real. Looking at Jung through the lens of Classical Yoga this paper invites a reconsideration of the Jungian ontic reality.

Greg Mogenson

ABSTRACT

This paper is a rejoinder to Stanton Marlan’s article, ‘The absolute that is not absolute: an alchemical reflection on the caput mortuum, the dark other of logical light.’ It challenges mischaracterizations by Marlan of Giegerich’s contribution to analytical psychology, not on the usual level of debate and counter-argument, but through psychological ‘seeing-through’. Marlan’s assertion that Giegerich’s psychology as the discipline of interiority approach is ‘too pure [a psychology] to treat ordinary human beings in the consulting room’ is responded to by turning the tables and using Marlan’s account of having had to euthanize his dog as ordinary case material with which to demonstrate the merit and analytic acuity of Giegerich’s mode of interpretation.

Ann Addison

ABSTRACT

Jung’s psychoid concept is not one of his most widely published ideas but it is one of his most fundamental, and his thinking on the subject occupied him for most of his career. Theoretically, he grounded the concept in the history of vitalism, but his ideas also had hermeneutic origins, in his self-experimentation and active imagination, as described in The Red Book. This paper reviews such hermeneutic background, and its value for informing a clinically relevant understanding of the psychoid concept.