Apart from Elijah and Salome I found the serpent as a third principle. It is a stranger to both principles although it is associated with both. The serpent taught me the unconditional difference in essence between the two principles in me. If I look across from forethinking to pleasure, I first see the deterrent poisonous serpent. If I feel from pleasure across to forethinking, likewise I feel first the cold cruel serpent.

The serpent is the earthly essence of man of which he is not conscious. Its character changes according to peoples and lands, since it is the mystery that flows to him from the nourishing earth-mother.

The earthly (numen loci) separates forethinking and pleasure in man, but not in itself The serpent has the weight of the earth in itself but also its changeability and germination from which everything that becomes emerges. It is always the serpent that causes man to become enslaved now to one, now to the other principle, so that it becomes error. One cannot live with forethinking alone, or with pleasure alone. You need both. But you cannot be in forethinking and in pleasure at the same time, you must take turns being in forethinking and pleasure, obeying the prevailing law, unfaithful to the other so to speak. But men prefer one or the other.

Some love thinking and establish the art of life on it. They practice their thinking and their circumspection, so they lose their pleasure. Therefore they are old and have a sharp face. The others love pleasure, they practice their feeling and living. Thus they forget thinking. Therefore they are young and blind. Those who think base the world on thought, those who feel, on feeling. You find truth and error in both.

The way of life writhes like the serpent from right to left and from left to right, from thinking to pleasure and from pleasure to thinking. Thus the serpent is an adversary and a symbol of enmity, but also a wise bridge that connects right and left through longing, much needed by our life. ~Carl Jung, Red Book, Mysterium Encounter, Page 247

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