Lenoir, Frédéric – Jung, un Voyage vers Soi

  • collective consciousness/ personal consciousness/ personal unconsciousness/ collective unconsciousness. There is an extensive literature concerning the distinctions of these four terms and it is not enough space to present them all here: Émile Durkheim introduced the term “collective consciousness”, Sigmund Freud presented the couple “conscious” and “ unconscious” that could be situated at the personal level, while Carl Gustav Jung discovered the “collective unconsciousness”. In fact, these four realities could be situated along two continua: i) personal – collective, and ii) conscious – unconscious. See image 2
  • hero’s journey. This phenomenon has a distinct definition in the literature. Usually, its representation like circular trajectory is denying a linear path. However, it could also be imagined as a roller coaster (see image 3) that is neither circular, nor linear, but both of them and more. Frédéric Lenoir, in his book “Jung, un voyage vers soi”, in the first part – “Un explorateur de l’âme humaine” – is presenting the life trajectory of Carl Gustav Jung starting with the “childhood” (Ch.1), continuing with “youth” (Ch. 2 and 3), passing through the “middle life” (Ch. 4 and 5) and ending with “old age” (Ch. 6 and 7) (see image1). This first part of the book is an exegetical retelling of the Jung’s “Memories, dreams, reflections” book
  • sacred/ individuation. The second part of Lenoir’s book – “L’expérience intérieure” – is dealing with two processes: the sacred and the individuation. These two processes belong more to the discovered facts, than biographical facts. Previously to Frédéric Lenoir they have been discussed extensivley in the literature. And they will be briefly presented as described by Lenoir. First, the sacred phenomenon could be imagined like a carousel, while secondly, the individuation process could be figured like a ferris wheel (see image 3). These two phenomena are interrelated: “[L’expérience intérieure] peut se comprendre de deux manières: comme expérience de ce que Jung appelle le <numineux>, rencontre ineffable du sacré au plus profond de l’âme; et comme long travail de maturation psychologique, à travers un dialogue entre le conscient et l’inconscient, qui permet de devenir un individu singulier et qu’il appelle le <processus d’individuation>” (in my translation: [The inner experience] can be understood in two ways: as an experience of what Jung calls <the numinous>, an ineffable encounter of the sacred in the depths of the soul; and as a long work of psychological maturation, through a dialogue between the conscious and the unconscious, which allows a person to become a singular individual and which he calls <the individuation process>). Further clarifications are given by Lenoir concerning these processes: “(…) pour la commodité de l’exposé, j’ai choisi de faire deux grandes sections dans cette seconde partie. La première est consacrée à la façon dont Jung considère, de manière très large, la question du sacré, ce qui m’amènera à parler de sa conception du religieux et de son lien à la religion chrétienne de son enfance. J’étudierai dans la seconde section le processus d’individuation à travers ses quatres grandes dimensions: le Soi, ses langages (symboles, archétypes, images, mythes), ses médiateurs (rêves, imagination active, rituels, synchronicités) et le cheminement qui conduit à la complétude de l’ être (démasquer la persona, intégrer l’animus et l’anima, traverser son ombre et réconcilier les contraires)” (again, in my translation: (…) for the convenience of the presentation, I chose to make two large sections in this second part. The first is developed to the way in which Jug considers, in a very broad way, the question of the sacred, which will lead me to talk about his conception of religion and its link to the Christian religion of his childhood. In the second section, I will study the process of individuation through its four major dimensions: the Self, its languages (symbols, archetypes, images, myths), its mediators (dreams, active imagination, rituals, synchronicities) and the path that leads to the completeness of being (unmasking the persona, integrating the animus and the anima, crossing its shadow and reconciling the opposites).)

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  • Frédéric Lenoir (2021): “Jung, un voyage vers soi”, Albin Michel
  • Carl Gustav Jung & Aniela Jaffé (1963): “Memories, dreams, reflections”, Vintage Books

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