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

[Carl Jung on “Clairvoyance.”]

To S. Wieser

Dear Colleague, 6 July 1951

Thank you for telling me about your interesting experience.

It is a case of what we would call clairvoyance.

But since this is just a word that signifies nothing further, it explains nothing.

You can get a bit nearer to understanding such happenings only if you observe them in a wider context of the same or similar events.

Surveying the sum of experiences of this kind you come to the conclusion that there is something like an “absolute knowledge” which is not accessible to consciousness but probably is to the unconscious, though only under certain conditions.

In my experience these conditions are always provided by emotion.

Any emotion that goes at all deep has a lowering effect on consciousness, which Pierre Janet called “abaissement du niveau mental.”

The lowering of consciousness means on the other hand an approach to the unconscious, and because the unconscious seems to have access to this “absolute knowledge,” information can be mediated which can no longer be explained rationally and causally.

This occasional failure of the seemingly absolute law of causality is due to the fact that even this law has only statistical
validity, with the implication that exceptions must occur.

If you are interested in the theory of these acausal connections of events I would mention that a little book of mine will shortly be
published by Rascher under the title Die Synchronizitat als ein Prinzip akausaler Zusammenhange.

With collegial regards and best, thanks,

Yours sincerely,

C.G. Jung