The Red Book: A Reader’s Edition (Philemon)
In terms of the self selﬂess love is a veritable sin.
We must presumably often go to ourselves to re-establish the connection with the self since it is torn apart all too often, not only by our vices but also by our virtues.
For vices as well as virtues always want to live outside.
But through constant outer life we forget the self and through this we also become secretly selﬁsh in our best endeavors.
What we neglect in ourselves blends itself secretly into our actions toward others.
Through uniting with the self we reach the God.
I must say this, not with reference to the opinions of the ancients or this or that authority; but because I have experienced it.
It has happened thus in me.
And it certainly happened in a way that I neither expected nor wished for. The experience of the God in this form was unexpected and unwanted.
I wish I could say it was a deception and only too willingly would I disown this experience.
But I cannot deny that it has seized me beyond all measure and steadily goes on working in me.
So if it is a deception, then deception is my God. Moreover, the God is in the deception.
And if this were already the greatest bitterness that could happen to me, I would have to confess to this experience and recognize the God in it.
No insight or objection is so strong that it could surpass the strength of this experience.
And even if the God had revealed himself in a meaningless abomination, I could only avow that I have experienced the God in it.
I even know that it is not too diﬃcult to cite a theory that would suﬃciently explain my experience and join it to the already known.
I could furnish this theory myself and be satisﬁed in intellectual terms, and yet this theory would be unable to remove even the smallest part of the knowledge that I have experienced the God.
I recognize the God by the unshakeableness of the experience.
I cannot help but recognize him by the experience.
I do not want to believe it, I do not need to believe it, nor could I believe it.
How can one believe such?
My mind would need to be totally confused to believe such things.
Given their nature, they are most improbable.
Not only improbable but also impossible for our understanding.
Only a sick brain could produce such deceptions.
I am like those sick persons who have been overcome by delusion and sensory deception. But I must say that the God makes us sick.
I experience the God in sickness.
A living God aﬄicts our reason like a sickness. He ﬁlls the soul with intoxication.
He ﬁlls us with reeling chaos. How many will the God break?
The God appears to us in a certain state of the soul. Therefore we reach the God through the self.
Not the self is God, although we reach the God through the self.
The God is behind the self, above the self. the self itself. when he appears. But he appears as our sickness, from which we must heal ourselves.
We must heal ourselves from the God, since he is also our heaviest wound.
For in the ﬁrst instance the God’s power resides entirely in the self since the self is completely in the God, be- cause we were not with the self.
We must draw the self to our side.
Therefore we must wrestle with the God for the self Since the God is an unfathomable powerful movement that sweeps away the self intothe boundless, into dissolution.
Hence when the God appears to us we are at ﬁrst powerless, captivated, divided, sick, poisoned with the strongest poison, but drunk with the highest health.
Yet we cannot remain in this state, since all the powers of our body are consumed like fat in the ﬂames.
Hence we must strive to free the self from the God, so that we can live.
It is certainly possible and even quite easy for our reason to deny the God and to speak only of sickness. Thus we accept the sick part and can also heal it.
But it will be a healing with loss. We lose a part of life.
We go on living, but as ones lamed by the God. Where the ﬁre blazed dead ashes lie.
I believe that we have the choice: I preferred the living wonders of the God.
I daily weigh up my whole life and I continue to regard the ﬁery brilliance of the God as a higher and fuller life than the ashes of rationality.
The ashes are suicide to me.
I could perhaps put out the ﬁre but I cannot deny to myself the experience of the God. Nor can I cut myself oﬀ from this experience.
I also do not want to, since I want to live. My life wants itself whole.
Therefore I must serve my self I must win it in this way. But I just win it so that my life will become whole.
For it seems to me to be sinful to deform life where there is yet the possibility to live it fully. The service of the self is therefore divine service and the service of mankind.
If I carry myself I relieve mankind of myself and heal my self from the God.
I must free my self from the God, since the God I experienced is more than love; he is also hate, he is more than beauty, he is also the abomination, he is more than wisdom, he is also meaninglessness, he is more than power, he is also powerlessness, he is more than omnipresence, he is also my creature. Carl Jung, Liber Novus, Pages 337-338