Jung: on The Psyche
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Anyone who wants to know the human psyche will learn next to nothing from experimental psychology. He would be better advised to put away his scholar's gown, bid farewell to his study, and wander with human heart through the world. There, in the horrors of prisons, lunatic asylums and hospitals, in drab suburban pubs, in brothels and gambling-hells, in the salons of the elegant, the Stock Exchanges, Socialist meetings, churches, revivalist gatherings and ecstatic sects, through love and hate, through the experience of passion in every form in his own body, he would reap richer stores of knowledge than text-books a foot thick could give him, and he will know how to doctor the sick with real knowledge of the human soul.

"New Paths in Psychology" In CW 7: Two Essays on Analytical Psychology. P.409


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The totality of the psyche can never be grasped by intellect alone. Whether we will it or not, philosophy keeps breaking through, because the psyche seeks an expression that will embrace its total nature.

"On the Psychology of the Unconscious" In CW 7: Two Essays on Analytical Psychology. P.201


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The psyche is a self-regulating system that maintains its equilibrium just as the body does. Every process that goes too far immediately and inevitably calls forth compensations, and without these there would be neither a normal metabolism nor a normal psyche. In this sense we can take the theory of compensation as a basic law of psychic behaviour. Too little on one side results in too much on the other.

"The Practical Use of Dream Analysis" (1934). In CW 16: The Practice of Psychotherapy. P.330


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"All that is outside, also is inside," we could say with Goethe. But this "inside," which modern rationalism is so eager to derive from "outside," has an a priori structure of its own that antedates all conscious experience. It is quite impossible to conceive how "experience" in the widest sense, or, for that matter, anything psychic, could originate exclusively in the outside world. The psyche is part of the inmost mystery of life, and it has its own peculiar structure and form like every other organism. Whether this psychic structure and its elements, the archetypes, ever "originated" at all is a metaphysical question and therefore unanswerable. The structure is something given, the precondition that is found to be present in every case. And this is the mother, the matrix-the form into which all experience is poured.

"Psychological Aspects of the Mother Archetype" (1939.1959) In CW 9, Part I: The Archetypes and the Collective Unconscious. 1959. pp 187


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The tragic thing is that psychology has no self-consistent mathematics at its disposal, but only a calculus of subjective prejudices. Also, it lacks the immense advantage of an Archimedean point such as physics enjoys. The latter observes the physical world from the psychic standpoint and can translate it into psychic terms. The psyche, on the other hand, observes itself and can only translate the psychic back into the psychic.

"On the Nature of the Psyche" (1947). In CW 8: The Structure and Dynamics of the Psyche. P.421


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A wrong functioning of the psyche can do much to injure the body, just as conversely a bodily illness can affect the psyche; for psyche and body are not separate entities, but one and the same life.

Two Essays on Analytical Psychology. CW 7: "On the Psychology of the Unconscious" pp.194


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The psyche consists essentially of images. It is a series of images in the truest sense, not an accidental juxtaposition or sequence, but a structure that is throughout full of meaning and purpose; it is a "picturing" of vital activities. And just as the material of the body that is ready for life has need of the psyche in order to be capable of life, so the psyche presupposes the living body in order that its images may live.

"Spirit and Life" (1926) In CW 8: The Structure and Dynamics of the Psyche. pp.618


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There is no difference in principle between organic and psychic formations. As a plant produces its flowers, so the psyche creates its symbols.

"Approaching the Unconscious" In Man and His Symbols, ed. C.G. Jung. In CW 18: retitled "Symbols and the Interpretations of Dreams" pp. 64


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Despite the materialistic tendency to understand the psyche as a mere reflection or imprint of physical and chemical processes, there is not a single proof of this hypothesis. Quite the contrary, innumerable facts prove that the psyche translates physical processes into sequences of images which have hardly any recognizable connection with the objective process. The materialistic hypothesis is much too bold and flies in the face of experience with almost metaphysical presumption. The only thing that can be established with certainty, in the present state of our knowledge, is our ignorance of the nature of the psyche. There is thus no ground at all for regarding the psyche as something secondary or as an epiphenomenon; on the contrary, there is every reason to regard it, at least hypothetically, as a factor sui generis, and to go on doing so until it has been sufficiently proved that psychic processes can be fabricated in a retort.

"Concerning the Archetypes, with Special Reference to the Anima Concept" (1936.1954)In CW 9, Part I: The Archetypes and the Collective Unconscious. pp. 117


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A psychology that treats the psyche as an epiphenomenon would better call itself brain-psychology, and remain satisfied with the meager results that such a psycho-physiology can yield. The psyche deserves to be taken as a phenomenon in its own right; there are no grounds at all for regarding it as a mere epiphenomenon, dependent though it may be on the functioning of the brain. One would be as little justified in regarding life as an epiphenomenon of the chemistry of carbon compounds.

"On Psychic Energy" (1928). In CW 8: The Structure and Dynamics of the Psyche. pp.10


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Restriction to material reality carves an exceedingly large chunk out of reality as a whole, but it nevertheless remains a fragment only, and all round it is a dark penumbra which one would have to call unreal or surreal. This narrow perspective is alien to the Eastern view of the world, which therefore has no need of any philosophical conception of super-reality. Our arbitrarily delimited reality is continually menaced by the "supersensual," the "supernatural," the "superhuman," and a whole lot more besides. Eastern reality includes all this as a matter of course. For us the zone of disturbance already begins with the concept of the "psychic." In our reality the psychic cannot be anything except an effect at third hand, produced originally by physical causes; a "secretion of the brain," or something equally savoury. At the same time, this appendage of the material world is credited with the power to pull itself up by its own bootstraps, so to speak; and not only to fathom the secrets of the physical world, but also, in the form of 'mind,' to know itself. All this, without its being granted anything more than an indirect reality.

"The Real and Surreal" (1933). In CW 8: The Structure and Dynamics of the Psyche pp.743


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Since psyche and matter are contained in one and the same world, and moreover are in continuous contact with one another and ultimately rest on irrepresentable, transcendental factors, it is not only possible but fairly probable, even, that psyche and matter are two different aspects of one and the same thing.

"On the Nature of the Psyche" (1947). In CW 8: The Structure and Dynamics of the Psyche. P.418


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Every science is a function of the psyche, and all knowledge is rooted in it. The psyche is the greatest of all cosmic wonders.

"On the Nature of the Psyche" (1947). In CW 8: The Structure and Dynamics of the Psyche. P.357


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It does not surprise me that psychology debouches into philosophy, for the thinking that underlies philosophy is after all a psychic activity which, as such, is the proper study of psychology. I always think of psychology as encompassing the whole of the psyche, and that includes philosophy and theology and many other things besides. For underlying all philosophies and all religions are the facts of the human soul, which may ultimately be the arbiters of truth and error.

"General Aspects of Dream Psychology" (1916). In CW 8: The Structure and Dynamics of the Psyche. P. 5


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Every science is descriptive at the point where it can no longer proceed experimentally, without on that account ceasing to be scientific. But an experimental science makes itself impossible when it delimits its field of work in accordance with theoretical concepts. The psyche does not come to an end where some physiological assumption or other stops. In other words, in each individual case that we observe scientifically, we have to consider the manifestations of the psyche in their totality.

"Concerning the Archetypes, with Special Reference to the Anima Concept" (1936). In CW 9, Part I: The Archetypes and the Collective Unconscious. P.113


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There is no Archimedean point from which to judge, since the psyche is indistinguishable from its manifestations. The psyche is the object of psychology, and-fatally enough-also its subject. There is no getting away from this fact.

"Psychology and Religion" (1938). In CW 11: Psychology and Religion: West and East. P.8


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Far from being a material world, this is a psychic world, which allows us to make only indirect and hypothetical inferences about the real nature of matter. The psychic, alone has immediate reality, and this includes all forms of the psychic, even "unreal" ideas and thoughts which refer to nothing "external." We may call them "imagination" or "delusion," but that does not detract in any way from their effectiveness. Indeed, there is no "real" thought that cannot, at times, be thrust aside by an "unreal" one, thus proving that the latter is stronger and more effective than the former. Greater than all physical dangers are the tremendous effects of delusional ideas, which are yet denied all reality by our world-blinded consciousness. Our much vaunted reason and our boundlessly overestimated will are sometimes utterly powerless in the face of "unreal" thoughts. The world powers that rule over all mankind, for good or ill, are unconscious psychic factors, and it is they that bring consciousness into being and hence create the sine qua non for the existence of any world at all. We are steeped in a world that was created by our own psyche.

"The Real and the Surreal" (1933). In CW 8: The Structure and Dynamics of the Psyche. P.747


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Since we do not know everything, practically every experience, fact, or object contains something unknown. Hence, if we speak of the totality of an experience, the word "totality" can refer only to the conscious part of it. As we cannot assume that our experience covers the totality of the object, it is clear that its absolute totality must necessarily contain the part that has not been experienced. The same holds true, as I have mentioned, of every experience and also of the psyche, whose absolute totality covers a greater area than consciousness. In other words, the psyche is no exception to the general rule that the universe can be established only so far as our psychic organism permits.

"Psychology and Religion" (1938). In CW 11: Psychology and Religion: West and East. P.68


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Not only in the psychic man is there something unknown, but also in the physical. We should be able to include this unknown quantity in a total picture of man, but we cannot. Man himself is partly empirical, partly transcendental ... Also, we do not know whether what we on the empirical plane regard as physical may not, in the Unknown beyond our experience, be identical with what on this side of the border we distinguish from the physical as psychic.

Mysterium Coniunctionis (1955). CW 14: P.765


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All that is not encompassed by our knowledge, so that we are not in a position to make any statements about its total nature. Microphysics is feeling its way into the unknown side of matter, just as complex psychology is pushing forward into the unknown side of the psyche. Both lines of investigation have yielded findings which can be conceived only by means of antinomies, and both have developed concepts which display remarkable analogies. If this trend should become more pronounced in the future, the hypothesis of the unity of their subject matters would gain in probability. Of course there is little or no hope that the unitary Being can ever be conceived, since our powers of thought and language permit only of antinomian statements. But this much we do know beyond all doubt, that empirical reality has a transcendental background.

Mysterium Coniunctionis (1955). CW 14: P.768


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It is a remarkable fact, which we come across again and again, that absolutely everybody, even the most unqualified layman, thinks he knows all about psychology as though the psyche were something that enjoyed the most universal understanding. But anybody who really knows the human psyche will agree with me when I say that it is one of the darkest and most mysterious regions of our experience. There is no end to what can be learned in this field.

Psychology and Alchemy (1944). CW 12: P.2


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The psyche creates reality every day. The only expression I can use for this activity is fantasy. Fantasy is just as much feeling as thinking, as much intuition as sensation., There is no psychic function that, through fantasy, is not inextricably bound up with the other psychic functions. Sometimes it appears in primordial form, sometimes it is the ultimate and boldest product of all our faculties combined. Fantasy, therefore, seems to me the clearest expression of the specific activity of the psyche. It is, pre-eminently, the creative activity from which the answers to all answerable questions come; it is the mother of all possibilities, where, like all psychological opposites, the inner and outer worlds are joined together in living union.

Psychological Types (1921). CW 6: P.78


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What we call fantasy is simply spontaneous psychic activity, and it wells up wherever the inhibitive action of the conscious mind abates or, as in sleep, ceases altogether.

"Problems of Modern Psychotherapy" (1929). In CW 16: The Practice of Psychotherapy. P.125


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Psychic existence is the only category of existence of which we have immediate knowledge, since nothing can be known unless it first appears as a psychic image. Only psychic existence is immediately verifiable. To the extent that the world does not assume the form of a psychic image, it is virtually nonexistent.

The Tibetan Book of the Great Liberation (1927). Psychological Commentary by C.G.Jung. In CW 11: Psychology and Religion: West and East. P.769


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What is "illusion"? By what criterion do we judge something to be an illusion? Does anything exist for the psyche that we are entitled to call illusion? What we are pleased to call illusion may be for the psyche an extremely important life-factor, something as indispensable as oxygen for the body-a psychic actuality of overwhelming significance. Presumably the psyche does not trouble itself about our categories of reality; for it, everything that works is real. The investigator of the psyche must not confuse it with his consciousness, else he veils from his sight the object of his investigation. On the contrary, to recognize it at all, he must learn to see how different it is from consciousness. Nothing is more probable than that what we call illusion is very real for the psyche-for which reason we cannot take psychic reality to be commensurable with conscious reality.

"The Aims of Psychotherapy" (1931) In CW 16: The Practice of Psychotherapy. P.III


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So far mythologists have always helped themselves out with solar, lunar, meteorological, vegetal, and other ideas of the kind. The fact that myths are first and foremost psychic phenomena that reveal the nature of the soul is something they have absolutely refused to see until now. Primitive man is not much interested in objective explanations of the obvious, but he has an imperative need or rather, his unconscious psyche has an irresistible urge-to assimilate all outer sense experiences to inner, psychic events. It is not enough for the primitive to see the sun rise and set; this external observation must at the same time be a psychic happening: the sun in its course must represent the fate of a god or hero who, in the last analysis, dwells nowhere except in the soul of man. All the mythologized processes of nature, such as summer and winter, the phases of the moon, the rainy seasons, and so forth, are in no sense allegories of these objective occurrences; rather they are symbolic expressions of the inner, unconscious drama of the psyche which becomes accessible to man's consciousness by way of projection-that is, mirrored in the events of nature.

"Archetypes of the Collective Unconscious" (1935). In CW 9, Part I: The Archetypes and the Collective Unconscious. P.7




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