Jung: On The Archetypes
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Archetypes are like riverbeds which dry up when the water deserts them, but which it can find again at any time. An archetype is like an old watercourse along which the water of life has flowed for centuries, digging a deep channel for itself. The longer it has flowed in this channel the more likely it is that sooner or later the water will return to its old bed.

"Wotan" (1936). In CW 10: Civilization in Transition. P. 395


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Archetypes are complexes of experience that come upon us like fate, and their effects are felt in our most personal life. The anima no longer crosses our path as a goddess, but, it may be, as an intimately personal misadventure, or perhaps as our best venture. When, for instance, a highly esteemed professor in his seventies abandons his family and runs off with a young red-headed actress, we know that the gods have claimed another victim.

"Archetypes and the Collective Unconscious" (1935). In CW 9, Part I: The Archetypes and the Collective Unconscious. P. 62


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It is in my view a great mistake to suppose that the psyche of a new-born child is a tabula rasa in the sense that there is absolutely nothing in it. In so far as the child is born with a differentiated brain that is predetermined by heredity and therefore individualized, it meets sensory stimuli coming from outside not with any aptitudes, but with specific ones, and this necessarily results in a particular, individual choice and pattern of apperception. These aptitudes can be shown to be inherited instincts and preformed patterns, the latter being the a priori and formal conditions of apperception that are based on instinct. Their presence gives the world of the child and the dreamer its anthropomorphic stamp. They are the archetypes, which direct all fantasy activity into its appointed paths and in this way produce, in the fantasy-images of children's dreams as well as in the delusions of schizophrenia, astonishing mythological parallels such as can also be found, though in lesser degree, in the dreams of normal persons and neurotics. It is not, therefore, a question of inherited ideas but of inherited possibilities of ideas.

"Concerning the Archetypes with Special Reference to the Anima Concept" (1936) In CW 9, Part I: The Archetypes and the Collective Unconscious. P. 136


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The original structural components of the psyche are of no less surprising a uniformity than are those of the visible body. The archetypes are, so to speak, organs of the prerational psyche. They are eternally inherited forms and ideas which have at first no specific content. Their specific content only appears in the course of the individual's life, when personal experience is taken up in precisely these form.

The Tibetan Book of the Dead. Foreword by C.G. Jung. (1954) In CW 11: Psychology and Religion: West and East. P. 845


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Archetypes were, and still are, living psychic forces that demand to be taken seriously, and they have a strange way of making sure of their effect. Always they were the bringers of protection and salvation, and their violation has as its consequence the "perils of the soul" known to us from the psychology of primitives. Moreover, they are the infallible causes of neurotic and even psychotic disorders, behaving exactly like neglected or maltreated physical organs or organic functional systems.

"The Psychology of the Child Archetype" (1940). In CW 9, Part I: The Archetypes and the Collective Unconscious. P. 266


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All the most powerful ideas in history go back to archetypes. This is particularly true of religious ideas, but the central concepts of science, philosophy, and ethics are no exception to this rule. In their present form they are variants of archetypal ideas, created by consciously applying and adapting these ideas to reality. For it is the function of consciousness not only to recognize and assimilate the external world through the gateway of the senses, but to translate into visible reality the world within us.

"The Structure of the Psyche" (1927). In CW 8: The Structure and Dynamics of the Psyche. P.342


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I have often been asked where the archetype comes from and whether it is acquired or not. This question cannot be answered directly. Archetypes are, by definition, factors and motifs that arrange the psychic elements into certain images, characterized as archetypal, but in such a way that they can be recognized only from the effects they produce. They exist preconsciously, and presumably they form the structural dominants of the psyche in general. They may be compared to the invisible presence of the crystal lattice in a saturated solution. As a priori conditioning factors they represent a special, psychological instance of the biological "pattern of behaviour," which gives all living organisms their specific qualities. Just as the manifestations of this biological ground plan may change in the course of development, so also can those of the archetype. Empirically considered, however, the archetype did not ever come into existence as a phenomenon of organic life, but entered into the picture with life itself.

"A Psychological Approach to the Dogma of the Trinity" (1942). In CW 11: Psychology and Religion: West and East. P. 222


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To the extent that the archetypes intervene in the shaping of conscious contents by regulating, modifying, and motivating them, they act like instincts. It is therefore very natural to suppose that these factors are connected with the instincts and to enquire whether the typical situational patterns which these collective form-principles apparently represent are not in the end identical with the instinctual patterns, namely, with the patterns of behavior.

"On the Nature of the Psyche" (1947). In CW 8: The Structure and Dynamics of the Psyche. P.404


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The archetype or primordial image might suitably be described as the instinct's perception of itself, or as the self portrait of the instinct, in exactly the same way as consciousness is an inward perception of the objective life-process.

"Instinct and the Unconscious" (1919). In CW 8: The Structure and Dynamics of the Psyche P.277


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We must constantly bear in mind that what we mean by "archetype" is in itself irrepresentable, but has effects which make visualizations of it possible, namely, the archetypal images and ideas. We meet with a similar situation in physics: there the smallest particles are themselves irrepresentable but have effects from the nature of which we can build up a model. The archetypal image, the motif or mythologem, is a construction of this kind.

"On the Nature of the Psyche" (1947). In CW 8: The Structure and Dynamics of the Psyche. P.417


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Sooner or later nuclear physics and the psychology of the unconscious will draw closer together as both of them, independently of one another and from opposite directions, push forward into transcendental territory, the one with the concept of the atom, the other with that of the archetype.

Aion (1951). CW 9: Part II: P. 412


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Just as the "psychic infra-red," the biological instinctual psyche, gradually passes over into the physiology of the organism and thus merges with its chemical and physical conditions, so the "psychic ultra-violet," the archetype, describes a field which exhibits none of the peculiarities of the physiological and yet, in the last analysis, can no longer be regarded as psychic.

"On the Nature of the Psyche" (1947). In CW 8: The Structure and Dynamics of the Psyche. P.420


Jung: On The Archetypes - Part II
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The archetypal representations (images and ideas) mediated to us by the unconscious should not be confused with the archetype as such. They are very varied structures which all point back to one essentially "irrepresentable" basic form. The latter is characterized by certain formal elements and by certain fundamental meanings, although these can be grasped only approximately. The archetype as such is a psychoid factor that belongs, as it were, to the invisible, ultra-violet end of the psychic spectrum . . . It seems to me probable that the real nature of the archetype is not capable of being made conscious, that it is transcendent, on which account I call it psychoid [quasi-psychic].

"On the Nature of the Psyche" (1947). In CW 8: The Structure and Dynamics of the Psyche. P.417


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That the world inside and outside us rests on a transcendental background is as certain as our own existence, but it is equally certain that the direct perception of the archetypal world inside us is just as doubtfully correct as that of the physical world outside us.

Mysterium Coniunctionis (1955). CW 14: P. 787


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In spite or perhaps because of its affinity with instinct, the archetype represents the authentic element of spirit, but a spirit which is not to be identified with the human intellect, since it is the latter's spiritus rector. The essential content of all mythologies and all religions and all isms is archetypal. The archetype is spirit or anti-spirit: what it ultimately proves to be depends on the 'attitude of the human mind. Archetype and instinct are the most polar opposites imaginable, as can easily be seen when one compares a man who is ruled by his instinctual drives with a man who is seized by the spirit. But, just as between all opposites there obtains so close a bond that no position can be established or even thought of without its corresponding negation, so in this case also "les extremes se touchment."

"On the Nature of the Psyche" (1947). In CW 8: The Structure and Dynamics of the Psyche. P.406


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The archetype as an image of instinct is a spiritual goal toward which the whole nature of man strives; it is the sea to which all rivers wend their way, the prize which the hero wrests from the fight with the dragon.

"On the Nature of the Psyche" (1947). In CW 8: The Structure and Dynamics of the Psyche. P.415


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The organism confronts light with a new structure, the eye, and the psyche confronts the natural process with a symbolic image, which apprehends it in the same way as the eye catches the light. And just as the eye bears witness to the peculiar and spontaneous creative activity of living matter, the primordial image expresses the intrinsic and unconditioned creative power of the psyche. The primordial image is thus a condensation of the living process.

Psychological Types (1921). CW 6: P 748


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It is a great mistake in practice to treat an archetype as if it were a mere name, word, or concept. It is far more than that: it is a piece of life, an image connected with the living individual by the bridge of emotion.

"Approaching the Unconscious" In Man and his Symbols, ed. C.G. Jung (1964). In CW 18: (retitled) "Symbols and the Interpretation of Dreams". P. 96 (in the CW)


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In psychic matters we are dealing with processes of experience, that is, with transformations which should never be given hard and fast names if their living movement is not to petrify into something static. The protean mythologem and the shimmering symbol express the processes of the psyche far more trenchantly and, in the end, far more clearly than the clearest concept; for the symbol not only conveys a visualization of the process but-and this is perhaps just as important-it also brings a re-experiencing of it, of that twilight which we can learn to understand only through inoffensive empathy, but which too much clarity only dispels.

"Paracelsus as a Spiritual Phenomenon" (1942) In CW 13: Alchemical Studies. P. 166


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Not for a moment dare we succumb to the illusion that an archetype can be finally explained and disposed of. Even the best attempts at explanation are only more or less successful translations into another metaphorical language. (Indeed, language itself is only an image.) The most we can do is to dream the myth onwards and give it a modern dress. And whatever explanation or interpretation does to it, we do to our own souls as well, with corresponding results for our own well-being. The archetype-let us never forget this-is a psychic organ present in all of us.

"The Psychology of the Child Archetype" (1940). In CW 9, Part I: The Archetypes and the Collective Unconscious. P. 271


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In reality we can never legitimately cut loose from our archetypal foundations unless we are prepared to pay the price of a neurosis, any more than we can rid ourselves of our body and its organs without committing suicide. If we cannot deny the archetypes or otherwise neutralize them, we are confronted, at every new stage in the differentiation of consciousness to which civilization attains, with the task of finding a new interpretation appropriate to this stage, in order to connect the life of the past that still exists in us with the life of the present, which threatens to slip away from it. If this link-up does not take place, a kind of rootless consciousness comes into being no longer oriented to the past, a consciousness which succumbs helplessly to all manner of suggestions and, in practice, is susceptible to psychic epidemics. With the loss of the past, now become "insignificant," devalued, and incapable of revaluation, the saviour is lost too, for the saviour either is the insignificant thing itself or else arises out of it. Over and over again in the "metamorphosis of the gods," he rises up as the prophet or first-born of a new generation and appears unexpectedly in the unlikeliest places (sprung from a Stone, tree, furrow, water, etc.) and in ambiguous form (Tom Thumb, dwarf, child, animal, and so on).

"The Psychology of the Child Archetype" (1940). In CW 9, Part I: The Archetypes and the Collective Unconscious. P. 267


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All psychic events are so deeply grounded in the archetype and are so much interwoven with it that in every case considerable critical effort is needed to separate the unique from the typical with any certainty. Ultimately, every individual life is at the same time the eternal life of the species. The individual is continuously "historical" because strictly time-bound; the relation of the type to time, on the other hand, is irrelevant. Since the life of Christ is archetypal to a high degree, it represents to just that degree the life of the archetype. But since the archetype is the unconscious precondition of every human life, its life, when revealed, also reveals the hidden, unconscious ground life of every individual. That is to say, what happens in the life of Christ happens always and everywhere. In the Christian archetype all lives of this kind are prefigured and are expressed over and over again or once and for all.

"Psychology and Religion" (1938). In CW 11: Psychology and Religion: West and East. P. 146


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All ages before us have believed in gods in some form or other. Only an unparalleled impoverishment of symbolism could enable us to rediscover the gods as psychic factors, that is, as archetypes of the unconscious. No doubt this discovery is hardly credible at present.

"Archetypes of the Collective Unconscious" (1935). In CW 9, Part I: The Archetypes and the Collective Unconscious. P. 50


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God has indeed made an inconceivably sublime and mysteriously contradictory image of himself, without the help of man, and implanted it in man's unconscious as an archetype, the archetypal light: not in order that theologians of all times and places should be at one another's throats, but in order that the unpresumptuous man might glimpse an image, in the stillness of his soul, that is akin to him and is wrought of his own psychic substance. This image contains everything which he will ever imagine concerning his gods or concerning the ground of his psyche.

"Religion and Psychology: A Reply to Martin Buber" (1952). In Jung, Gesammelte Werke, II: Zur Psychologie westlicher und ostlicher Religion. In CW 18: P. 661 (In CW)


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Every man carries within him the eternal image of woman, not the image of this or that particular woman, but a definite feminine image. This image is fundamentally unconscious, an hereditary factor of primordial origin engraved in the living organic system of the man, an imprint or "archetype" of all the ancestral experiences of the female, a deposit, as it were, of all the impressions ever made by woman-in short, an inherited system of psychic adaptation. Even if no women existed, it would still be possible, at any given time, to deduce from this unconscious image exactly how a woman would have to be constituted psychically. The same is true of the woman: she too has her inborn image of man.

"Marriage as a Psychological Relationship" (1925). In CW 17: The Development of Personality. P.338


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All human control comes to an end when the individual is caught in a mass movement. Then the archetypes begin to functions as happens also in the lives of individuals when they are confronted with situations that cannot be dealt with in any of the familiar ways.

"Wotan" (1936). In CW 10: Civilization in Transition. P. 395


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Psychology, as one of the many expressions of psychic life, operates with ideas which in their turn are derived from archetypal structures and thus generate a somewhat more abstract kind of myth. Psychology therefore translates the archaic speech of myth into a modern mythologem - not yet, of course, recognized as such - which constitutes one element of the myth "science."

"The Psychology of the Child Archetype" (1940). In CW 9, Part I: The Archetypes and the Collective Unconscious. P. 302


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There is not a single important idea or view that does not possess historical antecedents. Ultimately they are all founded on primordial archetypal forms whose concreteness dates from a time when consciousness did not think, but only perceived. "Thoughts" were objects of inner perception, not thought at all, but sensed as external phenomena, seen or heard, so to speak. Thought was essentially revelation, not invented but forced upon us or bringing conviction through its immediacy and actuality.

"Archetypes of the Collective Unconscious" (1935). In CW 9, Part I: The Archetypes and the Collective Unconscious. P. 50


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