Jung carved a Latin inscription above the door of his house in Kusnacht, Switzerland: “VOCATUS ATQUE NON VOCATUS DEUS ADERIT.” In English translation, the inscription reads: “Called or not called, the god will be there.”

Aniela Jaffe says: “It is the answer the Delphic Oracle gave the Lacedemonians when they were planning a war against Athens” (1979: 136).

In a letter of November 19, 1960, Jung explains the inscription:

By the way, you seek the enigmatic oracle Vocatus atque non vocatus deus aderit in vain in Delphi: it is cut in stone over the door of my house in Kusnacht near Zurich and otherwise found in Erasmus’s collection of Adagia (XVIth cent.). [Jung had acquired a copy of the 1563 edition of Erasmus’s Collectaneas adagiorum, a compilation of analects from classical authors, when he was 19 years old.]

It is a Delphic oracle though. It says: yes, the god will be on the spot, but in what form and to what purpose?

I have put the inscription there to remind my patients and myself: Timor dei initium sapiente [“The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom.”]

Here another not less important road begins, not the approach to “Christianity” but to God himself and this seems to be the ultimate question. (1975: 611)


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