20 Jan 2013 Jung’s Reluctance to Publish The Red Book

A speculation concerning Jung’s ambivalence, both the desire and reluctance, toward publishing The Red book. I have frequently, within these posts that now document both my dreams and Active Imagination sessions over a two-and-one-half year period, discussed the reluctance of my Consciousness to accept as valid material from my Unconscious. I have called this the “Big Brother/Little Brother” effect. Essentially, it is an act of both intimidation and invalidation. What I’m suggesting is that Jung questioned the value of the content he gathered from his Unconsciousness during his own Active Imagination sessions as a result of this universal effect. As I have observed repeatedly, this is the nature of the relationship between Consciousness and the Unconscious. It is a necessary relationship that keeps us sane. This intimidation and invalidation is the mechanism that that keeps material from the Unconscious from flooding into Consciousness and driving us crazy.

That this reluctance should manifest itself in such a profound way in the real world for Jung simply shows that he never fully overcame it. And quite probably he was correct not to have it published in his lifetime. The material that comes from the Unconscious is by its very nature grandiose, strange, and generally not believable because it is not of this world. It has the quality of being from the divine world, and how can someone suppose to be in contact with divine spirits without losing all credibility and being accused of being insane of just simply lying?  A contributing factor may have been the relationship Jung had with Freud, which had just ended when Jung started his Active Imagination sessions. His split with Freud, his “older brother,” may have triggered this ambivalence, which never left him.

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