Quotes of the Week (May 12, 2020)

This week’s quotes are from Carl Jung’s Dream Analysis Seminars, a transcription of seminars from 1928-1930.

• He tries to be terribly righteous, and only those who have the ability or the tendency to be very wrong try to be so very right, to attain perfection; when people try to be abnormally good, something is trying to go absolutely wrong.

• It is an interesting fact that in several Gnostic systems, the definition of saviour is ‘the maker of boundary lines,’ the one that gives us a clear idea of where we begin and where we end.

• The main fear of the unconscious is that we forget who we are.

• The more unconscious children are, the more they are under the influence of the collective unconscious, or they may absorb the unconscious problems of their parents… the dreams of children belong to the most interesting phenomena of analytical psychology.

• Analysis is analogous to confession, and confession has always been collective and ought to be collective; it is not done for oneself alone but for the sake of collectivity, for a social purpose. One’s social conscience is in trouble and forces one to confess; through sin and secrecy one is excluded, and when one confesses one is included again.

• This hiding away from friends destroys society; secrecy is anti-social, destructive, a cancer in our society.

• Thus human society will be built anew, after the seclusion of the Protestant age, on the idea of universally recognized truth.

• Since he doesn’t enter your sphere with the onslaught of a real person, since he doesn’t arouse a psychic vortex in your mental atmosphere, he is probably merely an image which has to do with yourself alone.

• A community is an organism, a symbiosis, and we form a sort of organism here while thinking together; and if anything disturbing happens within this organism, some mind receives the disturbance and says,”Look out!” In the primitive community, it would be the mind of the chief or the medicine man.

• Only domesticated animals misbehave; a wild animal never misbehaves, it follows its own natural law; there is no such thing as a good tiger that only eats apples and carrots!

• This is the reason why some men dislike to have women on committees, etc — they have no proper connection with the feminine part of their own psychology.

• The East bases much of its science on this irregularity and considers coincidences as the reliable basis of the world rather than causality. Synchronism is the prejudice of the East; causality is the modern prejudice of the West… Remember that the oldest Chinese scientific book is about the possible chances of life.

• Only in the Middle Ages did we learn to think logically — and then through religious teachers. The primitives did not possess logical thinking, simply because they could not produce the same kind of abstract reasoning which we can produce. There must have been a long period of time before our minds were trained to produce an abstract condition of mind over and against the temptations of the senses or emotions.

• Very often the end of a dream can teach one something; at the end something has usually happened to the figures that appeared on the stage, so that the situation at the beginning and the events between are quite explicable.

• There are situations in which we cannot afford to admit the truth, it may go too much against our own interests…

• If one looks at what is before one’s eyes one is unaware of what is behind one’s back; one cannot be conscious of everything in a given moment. To be conscious one must be concentrated; one is always conscious of something specific.

• There is not one thing in our civilization that has not first been in the imagination, in fantasy; even houses and chairs have first existed in the imagination of the architect or designer.

• If you get rid of qualities you don’t like by denying them, you become more and more unaware of wha you are; you declare yourself more and more non-existent, and your devils will grow fatter and fatter.