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Theology and the Church do not embarrass me in the least.
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C.G. Jung Letters, Vol. 1: 1906-1950

To Paul Maag

Dear Colleague, 1 June 1933

Many thanks for kindly confirming my expectations.

You are, ofcourse, quite right: I have not yet given up struggling for a philosophy of life and I very definitely hope that this struggle will not come to an end too soon, for I cannot see that possessing the absolute truth is a state in any way to be envied.

I would therefore rather not make any specific prognoses about the future, since the modest share of the light of knowledge that has been vouchsafed me does not enable me to see whither and to what goals the tortuous paths of fate are wending.

Theology and the Church do not embarrass me in the least.

On the contrary, I am indebted to both for extraordinarily valuable insights.

It was kind of you to recommend Martensen’s Jacob Bohme’s Leben und Autorenschaft. Bohme’s writings have long been familiar to me.

As you have observed, I am also well aware of the difference between myth and revelation, having concerned myself solely with myths and never with revealed truths.

Hence I found it exceedingly odd that you should amiably take me for an atheist.

You must surely have noticed that my principal concern is psychology and not theology.

So when I treat of the concept of God I am referring exclusively to its psychology and not to its hypostasis.

I have voiced this scientifically necessary epistemological proviso many times in my writings.

I must also confess that I have never yet been taken for an atheist by my readers, because for educated people today the principles of the theory of knowledge have already become pretty much part of their flesh and blood.

Certainly in Kant’s time1 there were still a few theologians who cherished the regrettable error that Kant was an atheist, but even then there was a bigger educated public who were capable of distinguishing between criticism of the concept of God and belief in God.

I think you do me an injustice when you hold the view that I have not mastered even the elements of gnoseology.

If you would submit the epistemological statements in my Psychological Types to a well-disposed examination, you could clearly discern my philosophical position.

You would also see that nothing is further from my mind than to deny the contents of religious experience.

With collegial


Yours sincerely,

C.G. Jung ~Carl Jung, Letters Vol. I, Pages 123-124