The Red Book

Jung went so far as to suggest that his patients prepare their own Red Books. Morgan recalled him saying:

I should advise you to put it all down as beautifully as you can-in some beautifully bound book. It will seem as if you were making the visions banal-but then’ you need to do that-then you are freed from the power of them. If you do that with these eyes for instance they will cease to draw you. You should never try to make the visions come again.

Think of it in your imagination and try to paint it. Then when these things are in some precious book you can go to the book & turn over the pages & for you it will be your church-your cathedral-the silent places of your spirit where you will find renewal. If anyone tells you that it is morbid or neurotic and you listen to them-then you will
lose your soul-for in that book is your soul. ~Red Book; Page 216.

In a letter to J. A. Gilbert in 1929, he commented on his procedure:

I found sometimes, that it is of great help in handling such a case, to encourage them, to express their peculiar contents either in the form of writing or of drawing and painting. There are so many incomprehensible intuitions in such cases, phantasy fragments that rise from the unconscious, for which there is almost no suitable language. I let my patients find their own symbolic expressions, their “mythology” ~Red Book; Page 216

I worked on this book for 16 years. My acquaintance with alchemy in 1930 tool( me away from it. The beginning of the end came in 1928, when Wilhelm sent me the text of the “Golden Flower,” an alchemical treatise.

There the contents of this bool(,found their way into actuality and I could no longer continue working on it. To the. superficial observer, it will appear like madness. It would also have developed into one, had I not been able to absorb the overpowering force of the original experiences. With the help of alchemy, I could finally arrange them into a whole. I always knew that these experiences contained something precious, and therefore I knew of nothing better than to write them down in a “precious,” that is to say, costly book and to paint the images that emerged through reliving it all-as well as I could. I knew how frightfully inadequate this undertaking was, but despite much work and many distractions I remained true to it, even if another possibility never … ~Carl Jung, Red Book, Epilogue.