Shakespeare’s “Macbeth” from a Jungian view

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when they all know the good as good, there arises the recognition of evil. When they all know the good as good, there arises the recognition of evil.

This article explores the psychological underpinnings of  Shakespeare’s “Macbeth” from a Jungian view. Carl Jung left a great deal of ambiguity surrounding his work. He understood, as long as there have been men and they have lived, they have all felt this tragic ambiguity and everybody must accept his or her “Shadow” during the individuation process. Ambiguity between good an evil, and a failed individuation is the core theme in the tragedy Macbeth: “Fair is foul, and foul is fair” say the three witches in the beginning of the play and this paradox is touched again by Macbeth: “So foul and fair a day I have not seen”. The enemy and death is “foul” – bad – but the outcome of the battle is “fair” – good, only because he has won.So the play Macbeth is about the evil, but as we see mostly the evil in us, and this evil is first impersonated by the witches. That is…

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Jungian Archetype Checklist for Tolkien’s Lord of the Rings

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In his masterpiece The Lord of the Rings, J.R.R. Tolkien created what he called a “new mythos”. There is undoubtedly much in Tolkien’s Lord of the Rings that invites us seeing it through the Jungian framework.  However, on a closer look, comparatively few archetypes are present, and the main protagonist’s (Frodo’s) individuation arguably fails. A Jungian view must offer more than “In a fairy land lived a halfling who, together with some helper-figures, became a wiser and individuated hobbit’.  On the first glance (and even on the second) Frodo listens more to his shadow than to his Anima – if he has an own Anima at all.

Now, how do we avoid  the “If you have a hammer, everything looks like a nail“, problem?  By systematically testing elements in the Jungian framework on its applicability to the Lord of the Ring and comparing the results with similar elements  in Richards Wagner “Ring Cycle”…

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C. G. Jung’s Red Book in a hurry – Narrative

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Prelude

The «Red Book» created between 1914 and 1930 can be described as a visual diary of dreams.  Jung  described this book – its language and emotions seem at times almost embarrassing – as important testimonies of his psychological and spiritual development. The psychoanalyst referred to his unfinished work as a !necessary but annoying ‘aesthetic elaboration”‘. This is the crux of the matter. The price is annoying and the ‘ Red Book ‘ combines beauty with an aura of art and mystery. I highly recommend it to anyone who is involved with C.G. Jung, because it is a key work in the history of spirituality. It is also beautiful. This article contains my notes to the Red Book in form of a narrative and how I understood it for myself.  I must warn you, even a short version of C.G. Jung results in a long article. The narrative is in the…

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