[Marie Louise Von Franz on the “Shadow.”]
VON FRANZ: The personal shadow is the personal shortcomings of things which every human being could be conscious of which is not archetypal.
For instance, such things as greed for money or jealousy, inferiorities which everybody has but prefers not to know about.
If one is jealous or if one is suddenly possessed by wanting money or soon, one could know about it if one is honest with oneself.
But the collective shadow has to do with the dark side of the archetype of the Self, that means, is the shadow of the God image.
In the Christian tradition, it would be the devil. And that has always been personified and felt as something which has not to do with, directly with the human being.
I mean, if somebody is possessed by the devil, he is much worse than just, he is not human. It’s demonic. And, but on the other hand, generally that merges.
First you have this area, of dim, dark side, and behind it lurks the other.
I’ve for instance, seen that, when Germany went to the devil in Nazism, people fell into it through their personal shadow.
For instance, they didn’t want to lose their job because they were clinging to money.
That was their personal shadow.
But then they joined in with the Nazi movement for that reason and did much worse things than they would have done normally under normal social conditions.
So you can say the personal shadow is the bridge to the collective shadow or the open door to the collective shadow.
But the collective shadow comes up in those terrible mass psychoses.
It’s like if you have your room, and there is one door not shut, and there the devil can come in.
And if you know your personal shadow, you can shut all the doors. ~Marie Louise Von Franz; Excerpt from A Matter of the Heart.