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Was Jung a Mystic?

In Jung’s “map of the soul” - there was a definite place set aside for what he considered to be a healthy, life giving, “religious experience” and/or direct experience of God. As such - throughout Dr. Carl G. Jung’s long and productive life (and until today) – he was repeatedly accused of the "heinous" crime of mixing psychology with mysticism.

To such charges, Jung repeatedly protested that he was not a theologian. He insisted that he was merely a scientist and an observer of human behavior. It wasn’t his fault that God and/or the “numinous” kept showing up in the human psyche.

Throughout the many years of Jung's long-standing professional career, he repeatedly showed great personal courage in his investigation of matters that no one else in the "respectable" medical/psychiatric academia circles of his day would dare touch.

Astrology, for example, was definitely one of those darkened avenues considered to be "tabooed" and off limits. But, in the end, Jung considered himself first and foremost a doctor and healer of the human psyche. When Jung believed it necessary to travel down and explore a certain tabooed avenue in order to gain a better understanding of the human psyche, then Jung "went for it."

Despite his protestations to the contrary, was Jung personally inclined toward an interest and fascination in these darkened, tabooed, avenues which were then commonly called "occult phenomenon?" Of course, he was.

If one observes Jung over the long progression of his life, a general pattern in his writing and teaching becomes rather obvious. In his early years (as a young boy, a university student, and then a young man) Jung was very interested in and wrote on the subject of "occult phenomenon."

Then, during Jung's middle years, while attempting to gain some sense of respectability among his scientific peers, his treatment of the subject appears to wane. Finally, in his later years, his interest in "occult phenomenon" once again picks up. Jung's need to gain acceptance among his peers only goes to show that he was ultimately very human. Frankly, it's rather comforting to me.

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Was Jung a Mystic?

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