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Gegenwart und Zukunft The Undiscovered Self, C.G Jung These essay, written late in Jung s life, reflect his responses to the shattering experience of World War II and the dawn of mass society Among his most influential works, The Undiscovered Self is a plea for his generation and those to come to continue the individual work of self discovery and not abandon needed psychological reflection for the easy ephemera of mass culture Only individual awareness of both the conscious and unconscious aspects of the human psyche, Jung tells us, will allow the great work of human culture to continue and thrive 2005 1351 1383 100 9647033427 1384 9789647033428 1385 1389 1392 100 9786001191657 20 This book is a lot better before you read it the distinguished black cover with its thought provoking image the profile of a man s head, in white, with a smaller, multicolored profile inside, superimposed by a black labyrinth It s all so perfectly 1958 The year The Undiscovered Self a beautiful title was released But the book itself is basically an acidulous, slightly paranoid attack on Communism, tinged with a faint apology for Jung s onetime acceptance of the Nazis.In 1958, Science and Progress were unstoppable, creating a monolithic state Opening the book at random Whereas the man of today can easily think about and understand all the truths dished out to him by the State, his understanding of religion is made considerably difficult owing to the lack of explanations.You can thank R.F.C Hull for that flat footed translation or possibly the problem is the manuscript itself, by the aging Carl Jung He died in 1961 Incidentally, that passage I just quoted was highlighted in blue by the nameless previous owner of my copy a nice Mentor paperback That highlighter got started on the very first page, when the book is described, under the headline Prescription for Salvation She or he underlined Dr Jung affirmed that the survival of our civilization might well depend upon closing the widening gulf between the conscious and unconscious aspects of the human psyche.The problem is that as that first, random quotation implied the unconscious turns out to basically mean Christianity.Jung was not much of a prophet Ten years after this book, the vast and monolithic state began to wither, replaced by niche marketing, Hippies, libertarian Republicans and Jesus freaks The Age of Ideology was over, replaced by the Age of Entrepreneurial Snack Bars No longer was this passage true The bigger the crowd the negligible the individual becomes But if the individual, overwhelmed by the sense of his own puniness and impotence, should feel that his life has lost its meaning which, after all, is not identical with public welfare and higher standards of living then he is already on the road to State slavery and, without knowing or wanting it, has become its proselyte.Farewell, State slavery Hello, Starbucks I read this book and I gained a greater appreciation of my own nature Without self knowledge there can be no growth The ills of society and the destructive forces that plague us are due to a lack of reflection or willingness to do personal work To know one s self is the most important part of being human, because with self knowledge comes compassion and integrity As an artist and an introvert attempting to find her place in a society that is loud and demands that winners vie for a turn in the spotlight, I have often felt at odds with the whole infrastructure of success Also, I have felt that the reasons for suffering were somehow mysterious This book opened my eyes to the true cause for agony in our world At the time, when I read this book, I felt a little like Humpty Dumpty I felt like there must be something wrong that I was broken or unable to find meaning I was unable to reconcile what IS with what AUGHT to be I wondered, why do we so often stray from peaceful and rational serenity This book made sense of the whole, explained my dilemma, and informed my vocational purpose in creating art. Everyone needs to read this book In a society over saturated with media and driven by mass consumerism, it is hard to figure out who you are as an individual Jung argues that no society can thrive if individuals to not get to know themselves Not in the conscious I like to read sense but in the unconscious sense. This book is as timeless as human nature Cases are made in favor of both freedom delving into the strains of individuality posed by communism and socialism and the soul delving into the strains of individuality posed by over adhearance to most of society s organized religions , all through articulations centered around self knowledge Jung s main concept of self knowledge has to do with the power of the unconscious and the pulls from it s dark, simplistic instincts one s shadow Without self knowledge, the ever present shadow continues to be ignored, perpetually becoming greater in its danger and influence When faced with a situation that the conscious can t handle, the shadow comes out, typically resulting in negative actions While these actions are acted out on an individual level, they collectively have broad social ramifications a powerful state, an unthinking and overly dogmatized religion, etc all of which further inhibit the individual, creating a snowball effect Jung argues that we must recognize and deal with the evils of our shadows through honest introspection, and through states of individual being that are not influenced by mass groups In this book he successfully demonstrates that if an individual is to thrive, he must be in touch with his full, undiscovered self. Jordan Peterson introduced me to Jung thru his books and his videos While walking into work last week i stumbled upon a box of books in the trash and The Undiscovered Self just so happened to be in the mix, so I read it This was my first Jung book and I honestly wasn t blown away but I couldn t put it down Some of the material is above my pay grade however that which I could grasp I could definitely dig it I look at it this way, here s this book lying on its death bed about to be sent into a trash heap to decompose and just as that s about to occur it gets another shot at doing its job once , and for that reason this book is special to me, we were meant for each other I would say this books shelf life has just had a Cinderella ending Now I don t know Jung well enough outside of the fact that Peterson seems to be blown away by him to understand this book that well, it s a lot of jibber jabber to me, but I think if I was to dedicate time to reading of his works and finding out about the man himself I could come to be a fan as well, I see Jung books in my future It is, unfortunately, only too clear that if the individual is not truly regenerated in spirit, society cannot be either, for society is the sum total of individuals in need of redemption. Jung s thesis in this book is that modern society turns individuals into a social mass where they are categorized by statistical averages that dehumanize people who are, inherently, unique beings who operate by irregularity Modern society thus turns inevitably into the state with its standardized laws and policies, and is run by rulers that are mouthpieces of the state doctrine, and by a Leader who almost infallibly becomes the victim of his own inflated ego consciousness This is how Jung has the constitutional state drifting into the situation of a primitive form of society, namely the communism of a primitive tribe where everybody is subject to the autocratic rule of a chief or an oligarchy This is interesting political theory The modern state suppresses individuality with official doctrine, creeds, and truth and turns people into social units To correct this situation, Jung sees a vital role for the individual s private relationship with an extramundane authority as opposed to mass, organized religion that taps into the inner man This is the undiscovered self As to what that might be, Jung calls it an insoluble puzzle that, nevertheless, must be allowed expression via symbols and such that conduce to synthesis versus a dissociation of personality , allowing the individual to regain control of his or her life For Jung, the puzzle that must be solved is to adapt instinctive, a priori archetypal forms into ideas which are adequate to the challenges of the present Psychic health appears to involve some sort of immediate relation to God, a tapping into one s instinctive being, and expression of what lies inside rather than its suppression Somehow, this leads to self knowledge and health and, we presume, counters mass society and its oppressive nature Jung weaves many separate ideas together in a long, tenuous, stream of consciousness sort of way and it s not particularly clear what we will find when we tap into our unconscious and how that will counter the ills of mass society Jung is clear that evil is built into our nature so the presumption must be that understanding this side of our nature enables us to control it somehow He also affirmatively asserts we must love our neighbor Where love stops, he says, power, violence and terror begin Jung seems to have faith that when one looks inside, somehow love will find a way to conquer power, violence and terror Human history suggests, however, that it s also prudent that power be held in reserve if love fails to do its job That, it is evident, would make Jung uncomfortable. The Undiscovered Self C.G JungSince the dawn of time man have always been on the hunt towards understanding and discovering himself A topic that has occupied man s minds for ages In this compelling work, C.G Jung approaches the topic of individuality in such a unique way Presenting the individual s struggle for moral and spiritual integrity against the mass psychology generated by political fanaticism, scientific materialism and technological triumphalism on a global scale The Plight of the individual in modern societyMost people confuse self knowledge with knowledge of their conscious ego personalities Anyone who has any ego consciousness at all takes it for granted that he knows himself But the ego knows only its own contents desires , not the unconscious shadow self and its contents dreams, visions and primordial images In general, people measure their self knowledge by what the average person in their social environment knows of himself, but not by the real psychic facts which are for the most part hidden from themhidden by the rule of the state To understand an individual human being, one must lay aside all scientific knowledge universal statistical knowledge of the average man and discard all theories in order to adopt a completely new and unprejudiced attitude towards him her Such a task of understanding can be only approached with a free and an open mind to vast realms of unique possibilities If statistical reality is the only reality, then it is the sole authority Then the individual is bound to be a function of statistics and hence a function of the State or whatever abstract principle, in other words a functioning unit of the state without any personal significance and can be compared to others Religion as the counterbalance to mass mindednessMan, as a social being, cannot on the long run exist without a tie to the community as a result he will never find the real justification for his existence, and his own spiritual and moral judgment, anywhere except in an extra mundane principle Meaning beyond the physical world as religious beliefs believe in God s might and grace capable of balancing the overpowering influence of external factors External factors that quench the individual s religious belief, thus his individuality As Jung explains The individual who is not anchored by God can offer no resistance on his own resources to the physical and moral blandishments of the world For this, he needs the evidence of inner, transcendent experience which alone can protect him from the otherwise inevitable submersion in the mass Merely intellectual or even moral insight into the stultification and moral irresponsibility of the mass man is a negative recognition only and amounts to not much than a wavering on the road to the atomization of the individual It lacks the driving force of religious conviction since it is merely rational Religion, sole meaning, and purpose lie in the direct relationship of the individual to god It s evident purpose is to maintain the psychic balance For this reason, he has always taken care that any difficult decision likely to have consequences for himself and others shall be rendered safe by suitable measures of religious nature prayer.The State, in turn, demands enthusiasm, self sacrifice, and love towards itself, and if religion establishes the concept of the fear of God , then the dictator State takes good care to provide the necessary terror in that process the state begins to slowly substitute the individuals own belief with that of the state The state claim it offers protection against such terrors, but in truth, it only offers outer protection from the world While religion offers both inner serenity protection of the soul and outer protection The individual s understanding of himselfMan is the slave of the machines that he thought have conquered space and time for him, he is intimidated and endangered by the might of the war technique which is supposed to safeguard his physical existence his spiritual and moral freedom Finally, to add comedy to tragedy, this lord of the elements, hugs to his bosom notions which stamp his dignity as worthless and becomes a landmark of absurdity All his achievements and possessions do not make him bigger on the contrary, they diminish him to the lowest levels existence Without consciousness, there would practically speaking, be no world, for the world exists as such only in so far as it is consciously reflected and consciously expressed by a psyche Consciousness is a precondition of being.Naturally, society itself is composed of de individualized persons, which makes them completely at the mercy of ruthless individualists they band the society together into groups and organizations as much as they like it is just this banding together and the resultant extinction of the individual personality that makes it succumb so readily to a dictator Divide and conquer In the end, everything rests on the quality of the individual, but the fatally short sighted habit of our age is to think only in terms of large numbers and mass organizations It takes only one madman to drive the world crazy It s only too clear that if the individual is not truly regenerated in spirit anchored by religion , society cannot be either, for society is the sum total of individuals in need of redemption The salvation of the world consists in the salvation of the individual soul God helps those who help themselves Didn t Prophet Abraham, Muses, Jesus and Muhammad Peace be upon them , trusted their inner experience, and have gone through their own individual ways, disregarding public opinion It is time we asked ourselves exactly why and for what purpose we are lumping together in mass organizations and what constitutes the nature of own individual human being This is hardly possible except through a new process of self nourishment Without self knowledge, there can be no growth, compassion, and integrity I would like to add in this matter the following He who knows himself and made known their poverty and inability towards them self accepted them self in weakness knew God s self esteem and his ability and his riches, so its self knowledge first, and then the knowledge of God after or He who knows himself has indicated that he knew God grace and riches first then his self Individual Philosophical and psychological approach to lifeOur philosophy is no longer a way of life, as it was in antiquity it has turned into an exclusively intellectual and academic affair.Virtually everything depends on the human soul and its functions It should be worthy of all the attention we can give it when everyone admits that the weal and woe of the future will be decided and solely by the psychic changes in man.Our loss of consciousness in our world is due primarily to the loss of instinct , and the reason for this lies in the materialistic development of the human mind over the past eons The power man had over nature, the his knowledge and skill went to his head and ego consciousness to control.The seat of faith, however, is not consciousness but spontaneous religious experience, which brings the individual s faith into immediate relation with God through instinct.Since it is believed that man is what his consciousness knows of itself, he regards himself as harmless and so adds stupidity to iniquity He does not deny that terrible things have happened and still go on happening, but it is always the others who do them Set blame on others, denying his self weakness and faults Neglecting the conditions of our own nature, and denying the concept that we are tempted to do evil in this negligence is the first step of turning us into an instrument of evil The greatest trick the Devil ever pulled was convincing the world he didn t exist Not to mention our lack of insight that deprives us of the capacity to deal with evil.Moral complacency and lack of responsibility are the sole reason for a divisive and alienated society likewise, nothing promotes understanding and rapprochement than the mutual withdrawal of projections withdrawal from rash judgment, blame and prejudice opinions that shape of mass public opinion Recognition of the shadow unconsciousness self , on the other hand, leads to the modesty we need in order to acknowledge imperfection A human relationship is not based on differentiation and perfection, for these only emphasize the differences or call forth the exact opposite it is based, rather on imperfection, on what is weak, helpless and in need of support by the strong , helpful and rich such is the very ground and motive of dependence The perfect has no need of the other, but weakness has.At the end happiness and serenity, of soul and meaningfulness of life can be experienced only by the individual and not by a State, which, through a religious and spiritual understanding of the self inner world towards the world we live in and interact with our own consciousness outer world I am a symbol of my soul C.G Jung Unknown artist In His Classic, Provocative Work, Dr Carl Jung One Of Psychiatry S Greatest Minds Argues That The Future Depends On Our Ability To Resist Society S Mass Movements Only By Understanding Our Unconscious Inner Nature The Undiscovered Self Can We Gain The Self Knowledge That Is Antithetical To Ideological Fanaticism But This Requires Facing The Duality Of The Human Psyche The Existence Of Good And Evil In Us All In This Seminal Book, Jung Compellingly Argues That Only Then Can We Cope And Resist The Dangers Posed By Those In Power Underwhelming Maybe It was my high expectations for this book that I found it okay with no brilliant insights.