C.G. Jung, Emma Jung and Toni Wolff: A Collection of Remembrances

Another time, discussing animals, he said: “God has His animal, the dove; Jesus had his, the little ram; the apostles all had theirs.

Now the ancients-Mithras-had different orders of initiation.

They would call the god by calling the animal-the raven, the cock-making the sounds with their mouth, giving the call.

Sometimes they would come.

Call it synchronicity, magic, there it is.

If one can stay in the middle, know one is human, relate to both the god, and the animal of the god, then one is all right.

One must remember, over the animal is the god; with the god, is the god’s animal.”

The last time I saw Dr. Jung was on the occasion of his eightieth birthday.

I had flown in unexpectedly, and at the large hotel reception attended by many visiting dignitaries, I made my way to his big chair enthroned at the center of the room.

He rose to greet me, leaning on his sturdy, silver-headed cane, looking fit and handsome, with his shock of white hair.

And the next day he unexpectedly joined those who were continuing the celebration by a chartered boat ride around the Lake of Zurich.

And there he engaged in animated conversation with visiting doctors.

There are vivid small memories too: of the big empty chair in the club room, waiting for him, when it was known he would be attending a meeting, and the stir that went around when he entered and took the place reserved for him; of the evident enjoyment of the Institute
parties which he and Mrs. Jung attended-the costume parties that are so much a part of Swiss life; of an evening when Mrs. Jung’s class on the Holy Grail was invited to the Jung home for coffee and discussion and questions and answers; and how inevitably Dr. Jung became head of the circle, and the one to whom the questions were put.

I remember the look of appreciation in his eyes when I brought long-stemmed floribunda roses, a sheaf of them, to him, on the occasion of my first appointment.

And of how the spirit of anger filled him with a tremendous vitality, once, to be dissipated as soon as he knew the situation.

And of how, to me, his talk, ever kindly and gentle, was like a swift, clear stream on a summer morning.

I heard from Dr. Jung just once, after my return to America, in a letter written December 23, 1959.

I should like to quote the entire letter here, and I think it speaks for itself:

Dear Miss Ainsworth,

I have read your friendly letter with interest.

I have been particularly interested in what you say about the book of Job, i.e., the divine omniscience.

While reading this little book you must be constantly aware of the fact, that whatever I say in it, does not refer to God Himself, but rather to the idea or opinion, man makes of God to himself.

When I use the term “the omniscient God” it means: this is what man says about God and not that God is omniscient.

Man always uses that knowledge, he finds in himself, to characterize his metaphysical figures.

Thus you could make an analogy between the obliviousness of the human being and a similar state of his God.

But this is insofar not permissible as man himself has made the dogmatic statement, that God’s Omniscience is absolute, and not subject to man’s shortcomings.

Thus God’s omniscience means really a perfect presence of mind and then only it becomes a blatant contradiction, that He does not consult it, or seems to be unaware of it.

In this sense ‘God’ is very paradoxical and I call my reader’s attention to such and other contradictions, to wake him up, so that he gets aware of the insufficiency of his representations and indirectly of the need to revise them.

This is the point, which is regularly misunderstood: people assume that I am talking about God Himself.

In reality I am talking about human representations.

So if anybody should talk to you about my job, you better refer him to this passage.

With my best wishes for Christmas and the New Year,

I remain,

Yours sincerely,

C. G. Jung

~ Mary Louise Ainsworth , J.E.T., Pages 111-113