Water is not only a symbol of life. It is the very precondition of life. Without water, there can be no life. Is it any wonder that most cultures have associated water with the feminine and the dark depths of the unconscious? After all, it has always been the female of our species who gives birth to new life.
Where does all this new life come from? Well, that’s the Big Question isn’t it? The Mystery that’s always confounded us, the one we have yet to solve. We’ve always reflected on it, and when we’re deep in reverie, opening our minds and suspending our judgment, images rise into our awareness.
Recently a reader asked this question: “If a woman performs the function of being an artist’s ‘muse’ and if the artist believes (to paraphrase Joseph Campbell in ‘The White Goddess”) that ‘she is a representative of the goddess deconstructing and remaking him’ then where does muse/anima begin and end?” I wasn’t exactly sure I understood […]
When I quit teaching and began writing over 25 years ago, this habit persisted. By then my reading, studying and writing were focused on Jungian psychology and understanding my dreams. But as I persisted in this inner work, something changed.
I love the week between Christmas and New Year’s Day. It has always stood out from the other 51 weeks in a year like a peaceful Zen garden, a special oasis where I attend to soul needs that require annual closure.
The unconscious is a repository of infinite properties which are unknown to our conscious egos. A recent dream vividly highlights this reality:
Last time in “The Psychology of Creativity” I discussed how creativity originates in the body’s physical instincts. But, you might wonder, what does this mean for me in practical terms? How do I gain access to my creativity? Where do I direct my energy and attention? What, exactly, is the link that connects my body’s natural instincts with my ego’s potential to produce something truly original?
I’m feeling inspired to write poetry these days, and this has me thinking about creativity. Jung says creativity originates in our instincts. In other words, our body, with its physical needs and functions, is the matter (L. Mater), or mother, of our urge to create. And the psyche governs our responses to our instinctual urges.
My “childhood home” dreams tell me what I’m doing well. They remind me to be grateful. They affirm my growth and encourage me to keep going. Stress dreams tell me when things are out of balance. They set up possible scenarios and rehearse strategies I might want to consider. And though they may bring me down for a time, I usually bounce back before long.
I’ve been feeling a bit estranged from myself for awhile. This might seem odd coming from one who’s made a profession of self-discovery. Yet, the fact is that since my last book came out, I’ve been beset by a restless discomfort and confounding dreams.