Psychology and Alchemy (Collected Works of C.G. Jung Vol.12)

[Carl Jung the Anthropos, the Pleroma, the Monad, and the spark of light (Spinther)]

We meet with similar ideas in Gnosticism:

I would mention the idea of the Anthropos, the Pleroma, the Monad, and the spark of light (Spinther) in a treatise of the Codex Brucianus:

This same is he [Monogenes] who dwelleth in the Monad, which is in the Setheus, and which came from the place of which none can say where it is. . . . From Him it is the Monad came, in the manner of a ship, laden with all good things, and in the manner of a field, filled or planted with every kind of tree, and in the manner of a city, filled with all races of mankind. . . . This is the fashion of the Monad, all these being in it: there are twelve Monads as a crown upon its head. . . . And to its veil which surroundeth it in the manner of a defense [tower] there are twelve gates. . . .This same is the Mother-City of the Only-begotten.

By way of explanation I should add that “Setheus” is a name for God, meaning “creator.”

The Monogenes is the Son of God.

The comparison of the Monad with a field and a city corresponds to the idea of the temenos (fig. 50).

Also, the Monad is crowned (cf. the hat which appears in dream one of the first series [par. 52] and dream 35 of this series [par. 254]).

As “metropolis” (cf. fig. 51) the Monad is feminine, like the padma or lotus, the basic form of the Lamaic mandala (the Golden Flower in China and the Rose or Golden Flower in the West).

The Son of God, God made manifest, dwells in the flower.

In the Book of Revelation, we find the Lamb in the centre of the Heavenly Jerusalem.

And in our Coptic text we are told that Setheus dwells in the innermost and holiest recesses of the Pleroma, a city with four gates (equivalent to the Hindu City of Brahma on the world-mountain Meru).

In each gate there is a Monad.


The limbs of the Anthropos born of the Autogenes (= Monogenes) correspond to the four gates of the city.

The Monad is a spark of light (Spinther) and an image of the Father, identical with the Monogenes.

An invocation runs: “Thou art the House and the Dweller in the House.”

The Monogenes stands on a table or platform with four pillars corresponding to the quaternion of the four evangelists.

The idea of the lapis has several points of contact with all this.

In the Rosarium the lapis says, quoting Hermes:

“I beget the light, but the darkness too is of my nature . . . therefore nothing better or more worthy of veneration can come to pass in the world than the conjunction of myself and my son.”

Similarly, the Monogenes is called the “dark light,” a reminder of the sol niger, the black sun of alchemy19 (fig. 34).

The following passage from chapter 4 of the ‘Tractatus aureus” provides an interesting parallel to the Monogenes who dwells in the bosom of the Mother-City and is identical with the crowned and veiled Monad:

But the king reigns, as is witnessed by his brothers, [and] says:

“I am crowned, and I am adorned with the diadem; I am clothed with the royal garment, and I bring joy to the heart; for, being chained to the arms and breast of my mother, and to her substance, I cause my substance to hold together and rest; and I compose the invisible from the visible, making the occult to appear; and everything that the philosophers have concealed will be generated from us. Hear then these words, and understand them; keep them, and meditate upon them, and seek for nothing more. Man is generated from the principle of Nature whose inward parts are fleshy, and from no other substance.”

The “king” refers to the lapis.

That the lapis is the “master” is evident from the following Hermes quotation in the Rosarium:

“Et sic Philosophus non est Magister lapidis, sed potius minister” (And thus the philosopher is not the master of the stone but rather its minister).

Similarly the final production of the lapis in the form of the crowned hermaphrodite is called the aenigma regis.

A German verse refers to the enigma as follows (fig. 54):

Here now is born the emperor of all honour Than whom there cannot be born any higher, Neither by art nor by the work of nature Out of the womb of any living creature.
Philosophers speak of him as their son And everything they do by him is done.

The last two lines might easily be a direct reference to the above quotation from Hermes.

It looks as if the idea had dawned on the alchemists that the Son who, according to classical (and Christian) tradition, dwells eternally in the Father and reveals himself as God’s gift to mankind, was something that man could produce out of his own nature—with God’s help, of course (Deo concedente).

The heresy of this idea is obvious.

The feminine nature of the inferior function derives from its contamination with the unconscious. Because of its feminine characteristics the unconscious is personified by the anima (that is to say, in men; in women it is masculine).

If we assume that this dream and its predecessors really do mean something that justly arouses a feeling of significance in the dreamer, and if we further assume that this significance is more or less in keeping with the views put forward in the commentary, then we would have reached here a high point of introspective intuition whose boldness leaves nothing to be desired.

But even the everlasting pendulum clock is an indigestible morsel for a consciousness unprepared for it, and likely to hamper any too lofty flight of thought. ~Carl Jung, Psychology and Alchemy, Pages 107-112.