A couple of statements from Johnson’s Inner Work.
Page 164: “There is a temptation to start composing the Active Imagination so that it would sound nice and impressive for the other person if he or she happened to red it. It has to be clear that only you will ever read these pages; otherwise it will be very difficult to be honest in what you record.”
Page 166: “You don’t need to write a great work of literature. In fact, if you started writing for other people’s eyes it would probably distract you from living out your inner adventure honestly.”
First of all, I agree with these comments completely. I probably shouldn’t be making these sessions public; however, I have no intention of posting everything that goes on in my Active Imagination sessions, so that should relieve some of the pressure on me to manipulate the content toward the socially acceptable. That said, I’ve posted so far about ninety percent of everything that has gone on within the Iris of Time. That will probably change in the future. As far as editing this blog goes, I do clean it up a little, but only to add what I omitted unintentionally and to correct obvious typos.
I do believe it’s instructive to see Active Imagination develop in someone who is beginning to practice it and doing a lot of research on the technique while developing the skill. And it is a skill, just as is playing baseball or painting with watercolors. What has really shocked me is that I’ve found so much of the process as advertised even before I’d read much about Active Imagination. I’d also anticipated the relationship between dreams and Active Imagination very early on. Which just goes to show, since I’m no mastermind, that the human psyche is much the same in all of us and predictable to certain extent. The good part is that I’d undergone psychotherapy for five years previously and was under no crucial emotional traumas when I started.
But I also have other reasons for undergoing Active Imagination publicly. I want to investigate the relationship between Active Imagination and the creative process of writing fiction. I might even write a book on the subject and call it Jungian Novel Writing. That was the original title of Novelsmithing, but I didn’t feel that that book lived up to the billing that the title implied.