“We are still looking back to the pentecostal events in a dazed way instead of looking forward to the goal the Spirit is leading us to. Therefore mankind is wholly unprepared for the things to come. Man is compelled by divine forces to go forward to increasing consciousness and cognition, developing further and further away from his religious background because he does not understand it any more. His religious teachers and leaders are still hypnotized by the beginnings of a then new aeon of consciousness instead of understanding them and their implications. What one once called the “Holy Ghost” is an impelling force, creating wider consciousness and responsibility and thus enriched cognition. The real history of the world seems to be the progressive incarnation of the deity.” ~ Gerhard Adler, C.G. Jung Letters, Vol.2, 1951-1961, 436.
This afternoon I responded to a comment a reader made about my last blog post. We were wondering why Amazon posts reviews for The Soul’s Twins that were written by some people and not others. I replied with a possible explanation that a friend in the book publishing business shared, “I think they’re wary because of a spate of “fake” reviews in the past.” I ended with, “Is nothing sacred any more?”
Fake news. Time to say ‘goodbye’ to the Fourth Estate. Most of us once trusted the press and news media’s ability to frame political issues fairly and honestly. Not any more.
Fake votes. For as long as I can remember, everyone’s right to vote in a Democracy was sacrosanct, and the trustworthiness of the volunteers and supervisors who tallied and reported votes was taken for granted. No longer.
Fake conspiracy theories. People have always made up stories that incite others to persecute and threaten innocent victims. One only has to see what happened to millions of innocent people in World War II to know the truth of this. Yet it continues.
Everything and nothing has changed. Today even democracy’s most powerful and respected authorities cite facts they cannot prove to support theories which spread so rapidly that an alarming number of people grow frightened enough to act on. When our highest courts of law refuse to support these unsubstantiated theories, they too are viewed with suspicion.
Why is this happening? What are we to do when we can no longer believe our authorities? When our most trusted sources of information are distorted on an international web of information whose trustworthiness has been compromised by dangerously invasive foreign powers? How can anyone tell the difference between the innocent and the guilty, falsity and truth?
I’m not pointing fingers. I’m not blaming one political faction over another or advocating blind trust in the sanctity of democracy as it now exists. Because democracy has problems too. Blind trust and beliefs in outer authorities and institutions only perpetuate the problems we all struggle with, and we’re naive to think otherwise. The problem does not originate out there in imperfect individuals or societal institutions like government and religion. It starts in here.
What then, is sacred?
“The future indwelling of the Holy Ghost in man amounts to a continuing incarnation of God. lt is the task of the Paraclete, the ‘spirit of truth,’ to dwell and work in individual human beings, so as to remind them of Christ’s teachings and lead them into the light.” ~C.G. Jung, Answer to Job, pars. 692-696
Jung wrote these words about organized religion and the God-image of Christianity in the middle of the last century. They’re true of every religion and every individual. We all tend to look backward and outward to locate the sacred. The only place we’re still too afraid to look is within.
Fakers and avengers, conspirators and fools live in every soul. The shadows of our unconscious archetypes — including the most omnipotent, omnibenevolent, and omniscient one of all, our God-image the Self — demand scapegoats to punish and blame for our personal flaws and frustrated desires for love, power, and acclaim. Until we own this reality in ourselves, nothing on earth will be sacred.
The only answer to our lost sense of the sacred and lack of belief and trust will be built on the temple of ourselves, the spirit of truth within us. As Thomas Arzt writes in “The Way of What Is to Come,” the first essay in Jung’s Red Book for Our Time, Vol. 1, (co-authored by Murray Stein), the only “remedy for postmodern turbulences…will be gnosis that represents the bridge toward what is to come.” Gnosis is the inner knowing of each individual, an invisible church that we all can continue to build.
How can we each build a new church and society?
Think psychologically and live spiritually.
Where is your temple?
Jean Raffa’s The Bridge to Wholeness and Dream Theatres of the Soul are at Amazon. E-book versions are also at Kobo, Barnes And Noble and Smashwords. Healing the Sacred Divide can be found at Amazon and Larson Publications.com. Her new book, The Soul’s Twins, is available at Schiffer, Red Feather Mind, Body, Spirit and wherever books are sold. Subscribe to her newsletter at www.jeanbenedictraffa.com.