Memories, Dreams, Reflections Publisher: Vintage; Revised Edition edition
[Carl Jung – The visions and experiences were utterly real; there was nothing subjective about them; they all had a quality of absolute objectivity.]
During those weeks I lived in a strange rhythm.
By day I was usually depressed. I felt weak and wretched, and scarcely dared to stir.
Gloomily, I thought, “Now I must go back to this drab world.”
Toward evening I would fall asleep, and my sleep would last until about midnight.
Then I would come to myself and lie awake for about an hour, but in an utterly transformed state.
It was as if I were in an ecstasy.
I felt as though I were floating in space, as though I were safe in the womb of the universe in a tremendous void, but filled with the highest possible feeling of happiness.”
This is eternal bliss,” I thought. “This cannot be described; it is far too wonderful!”
Everything around me seemed enchanted. At this hour of the night the nurse brought me some food she had warmed for only then was I able to take any, and I ate with appetite.
For a time it seemed to me that she was an old Jewish woman, much older than she actually was, and that she was preparing ritual kosher dishes for me.
When I looked at her, she seemed to have a blue halo around her head.
I myself was, so it seemed, in the Pardes Rimmonim, the garden of pomegranates, and the wedding of Tifereth with Malchuth was taking place. Or else I was Rabbi Simon ben Jochai, whose wedding in the afterlife was being celebrated.
It was the mystic marriage as it appears in the Cabbalistic tradition.
I cannot tell you how wonderful it was.
I could only think continually, “Now this is the garden of pomegranates!
Now this is the marriage of Malchuth with Tifereth!”
I do not know exactly what part I played in it.
At bottom it was I myself: I was the marriage.
And my beatitude was that of a blissful wedding.
Gradually the garden of pomegranates faded away and changed.
There followed the Marriage of the Lamb, in a Jerusalem festively bedecked.
I cannot describe what it was like in detail.
These were ineffable states of joy. Angels were present, and light.
I myself was the “Marriage of the Lamb.”
That, too, vanished, and there came a new image, the last vision. I walked up a wide valley to the end, where a gentle chain of hills began.
The valley ended in a classical amphi-theater. It was magnificently situated in the green landscape. And there, in this theater, the hieros gamos was being celebrated.
Men and women dancers came onstage, and upon a flower-decked couch All-father Zeus and Hera consummated the mystic marriage, as it is described in the Iliad.
All these experiences were glorious.
Night after night I floated in a state of purest bliss, “thronged round with images of all creation.”
Gradually, the motifs mingled and paled.
Usually the visions lasted for about an hour; then I would fall asleep again.
By the time morning drew near, I would feel: Now gray morning is coming again; now comes the gray world with its boxes!
What idiocy, what hideous nonsense! Those inner states were so fantastically beautiful that by comparison this world appeared downright ridiculous.
As I approached closer to life again, they grew fainter, and scarcely three weeks after the first vision they ceased altogether.
It is impossible to convey the beauty and intensity of emotion during those visions.
They were the most tremendous things I have ever experienced. And what a contrast the day was: I was tormented and on edge; everything irritated me; everything was too material, too crude and clumsy, terribly limited both spatially and spiritually.
It was all an imprisonment, for reasons impossible to divine, and yet it had a kind of hypnotic power, a cogency, as if it were reality itself, for all that I had clearly perceived its emptiness.
Although my belief in the world returned to me, I have never since entirely freed myself of the impression that this life is a segment of existence which is enacted in a three-dimensional boxlike universe especially set up for it.
There is something else I quite distinctly remember.
At the beginning, when I was having the vision of the garden of pomegranates, I asked the nurse to forgive me if she were harmed.
There was such sanctity in the room, I said, that it might be harmful to her.
Of course she did not understand me. For me the presence of sanctity had a magical atmosphere; I feared it might be unendurable to others.
I understood then why one speaks of the odor of sanctity, of the “sweet smell” of the Holy Ghost. This was it.
There was a pneuma of inexpressible sanctity in the room, whose manifestation was the mysterium coniunctionis.
I would never have imagined that any such experience was possible.
It was not a product of imagination. The visions and experiences were utterly real; there was nothing subjective about them; they all had a quality of absolute objectivity.
We shy away from the word “eternal,” but I can describe the experience only as the ecstasy of a non-temporal state in which present, past, and future are one.
Everything that happens in time had been brought together into a concrete whole. Nothing was distributed over time, nothing could be measured by temporal concepts.
The experience might best be defined as a state of feeling, but one which cannot be produced by imagination.
How can I imagine that I exist simultaneously the day before yesterday, today, and the day after tomorrow?
There would be things which would not yet have begun, other things which would be indubitably present, and others again which would already be finished and yet all this would be one.
The only thing that feeling could grasp would be a sum, an iridescent whole, containing all at once expectation of a beginning, surprise at what is now happening, and satisfaction or disappointment with the result of what has happened.
One is interwoven into an indescribable whole and yet observes it with complete objectivity. . ~Carl Jung; Memories Dreams and Reflections