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Letters of C. G. Jung: Volume 2, 1951-1961

To Meggie Reichstein

Dear Dr. Reichstein, 2 August 1957

Thank you very much for the great trouble you have taken in working through Sumantri Hardjo Rakosa’s book on “The Conception of Man in Indonesian Religion as a Basis for Psychotherapy,” and for furnishing such a clear report of its contents.

Your resume of his remarks on my psychology was most helpful.

They paint a picture of the limitations of his understanding.

You are right in supposing that the author hasn’t grasped much of my thinking. In his ideas he remains stuck in the traditional outlook of the East.

He mistakes me for a philosopher, which I am quite definitely not.

I am a psychologist and empiricist, and for me the meaning of life does not lie in annulling it for the sake of an alleged “possibility of transcendental existence” which nobody knows how to envisage.

We are men and not gods.

The meaning of human development is to be found in the fulfilment of this life.

It is rich enough in marvels.

And not in detachment from this world.

How can I fulfil the meaning of my life if the goal I set myself is the “disappearance of individual consciousness”?

What am I without this individual consciousness of mine?

Even what I have called the “self” functions only by virtue of an ego which hears the voice of that greater being.

I fear I have saddled you with a thankless task in working through this book.

That you have discharged it with such patience and lucidity was a very great help.

With best regards,

Yours sincerely,

C.G. Jung ~Carl Jung, Letters Vol. II, Page 381