July 22, 2019, 8:07 pm

A few comments by C.G. Jung that I think are important to writers.


Author Topic: A few comments by C.G. Jung that I think are important to writers.  (Read 959 times)

Odd Greg

  • Date Registered: Jul 2007
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“Something within has been touched. A gradient has formed, and I must write.”

“A book of mine is always a matter of fate. There is something unpredictable about the process of writing, and I cannot prescribe for myself any predetermined course. Thus this ‘autobiography’ is now taking a direction quite different from what I had imagined at the beginning.”

“What we are to our inner vision, and what man appears to be sub specie aeternitatis [under the aspect of eternity], can only be expressed by way of myth. Myth is more individual and expresses life more precisely than does science. Science works with concepts of averages which are far too general to do justice to the subjective variety of an individual life.”

~Carl G. Jung, from Memories, Dreams, Reflections (Revised Edition) with Aniela Jaffe, published 1965 by Vintage Books.
Copyright (c) 1961, 1962, 1963 by Random House, Inc.
"If you surrender to the wind, you can ride it."
~ Toni Morrison.

Odd Greg

  • Date Registered: Jul 2007
  • Posting Level: 18
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One of the many debts I owe to Krys is her persistence in the re-awakening of my awareness of inner worlds. All of us know that there is the outside world and the inside world. Our outer voice and inner voice are mundane examples of outer and inner worlds. Dreaming and fantasizing are more profound examples of the inner world. For many years, prior to meeting Krys, I had come to reject any notions of my inner thoughts, dreams and fantasies as having any more meaning than mere chance and random sparks of electricity and chemicals. How I came to be that way in the first place isn’t a sad story. It’s life as I lived it. I wasn’t always like that.

I posted those selected quotes from C G Jung because they touched on points that I think are useful to writers. However, there are deeper origins to those thoughts. Jung paved the way in his time to an acceptance of the notion of the unconscious mind and how it functioned. Of its importance to understanding ourselves, and to finding deeper meaning in our worlds. Through dreams and fantasies, Jung discovered an inner world within himself so rich and expansive that it paved the way to everything of meaning in his life.

Quote from: Carl G. Jung
The years when I was pursuing my inner images were the most important in my life -- in them everything essential was decided. It all began then; the later details are only supplements and clarifications of the material that burst forth from the unconscious, and at first swamped me. It was the prima materia for a lifetime’s work.

One of his most profound revelations to western thinking is that each of us live in at least two different worlds - our history (from birth to death, from success to failure, from events both good and bad,) and our mythology (our view of the world, the stories we tell ourselves about people and events, our foci on the meaning, passions and fears that comprise the real story of who we are.)

I believe that when we write fiction, when we fantasize on paper, we are giving insights into our personal mythology. We are telling some part of ourselves through character, plot and setting. Exploring, if you will, the inner worlds that exist in us - in our unconscious and in our souls. These are not scientific papers filled with verifiable facts and assertions or diagnosis. By its nature, science cannot allow vagueness or subjective reasoning. Mythology, however, is free to wander the landscape of our language and gather archetypes, symbols and personal talismans that carry the meaning that science is not capable of grasping - let alone explaining.

So, I continue to owe Krys that debt of gratitude for shaking my tree and knocking me out of my comfort zone. No one is whole who can live only in the outer world while denying the worlds that thrive (and drive us from) inside.
"If you surrender to the wind, you can ride it."
~ Toni Morrison.

 

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