Though the effects of anima and animus can be made conscious, they themselves are factors transcending consciousness and beyond the reach of perception and volition. Hence they remain autonomous despite the integration of their contents, and for this reason they should be borne constantly in mind. This is extremely important from the therapeutic standpoint, because constant observation pays the unconscious a tribute that more or less guarantees its co-operation.
The unconscious as we know can never be “done with” once and for all. It is, in fact, one of the most important tasks of psychic hygiene to pay continual attention to the symptomatology of unconscious contents and processes, for the good reason that the conscious mind is always in danger of becoming one-sided, of keeping to well-worn paths and getting stuck in blind alleys. The complementary and compensating function of the unconscious ensures that these dangers, which are especially great in neurosis, can in some measure be avoided.
It is only under ideal conditions, when life is still simple and unconscious enough to follow the serpentine path of instinct without hesitation or misgiving, that the compensation works with entire success. The more civilized, the more unconscious and complicated a man is, the less he is able to follow his instincts. His complicated living conditions and the influence of his environment are so strong that they drown the quiet voice of nature.
Opinions, beliefs, theories, and collective tendencies appear in its stead and back up all the aberrations of the conscious mind. Deliberate attention should then be given to the unconscious so that the compensation can set to work. Hence it is especially important to picture the archetypes of the unconscious not as a rushing phantasmagoria of fugitive images but as constant, autonomous factors, which indeed they are. ~Carl Jung; Syzygy: Anima and animus.
Anima and Animus
The conscious side of woman corresponds to the emotional side of man, not to his “mind.” Mind makes up the soul, or better, the “animus” of woman, and just as the anima of a man consists of inferior relatedness, full of affect, so the animus of woman consists of inferior judgments, or better, opinions. ~~Carl Jung, CW 13, Page 60
For a woman, the typical danger emanating from the unconscious comes from above, from the “spiritual” sphere personified by the animus, whereas for a man it comes from the chthonic realm of the “world and woman,” i.e., the anima projected on to the world. ~”A Study in the Process of Individuation” ~Carl Jung, CW 9i, Page 559
No man can converse with an animus for five minutes without becoming the victim of his own anima. Anyone who still had enough sense of humor to listen objectively to the ensuing dialogue would be staggered by the vast number of commonplaces, misapplied truisms, clichés from newspapers and novels, shop-soiled platitudes of every description interspersed with vulgar abuse and brain splitting lack of logic. It is a dialogue which, irrespective of its participants, is repeated millions and millions of times in all the languages of the world and always remains essentially the same. ~Carl Jung, CW 9ii, Page 29
The search into the unconscious involves confronting the shadow, man’s hidden nature; the anima/animus, a hidden opposite gender in each individual; and beyond, the archetype of meaning. These are archetypes susceptible to personification; the archetypes of transformation, which express the process of individuation itself, are manifested in situations. As archetypes penetrate consciousness, they influence the perceived experience of normal and neurotic people; a too powerful archetype may totally possess the individual and cause psychosis.
The formulation of the archetypes is described as an empirically derived concept, like that of the atom; it is a concept based not only on medical evidence but on observations of mythical, religious and literary phenomena, these archetypes are considered to be primordial images, spontaneous products of the psyche which do not reflect any physical process, but are reflected in them.
It is noted that while the theories of materialism would explain the psyche as an epiphenomenon of chemical states in the brain, no proof has yet been found for this hypothesis; it is considered more reasonable to view psychic production as a generating rather than a generated factor.
The anima is the feminine aspect of the archetypal male/female duality whose projections in the external world can be traced through myth, philosophy and religious doctrine. This duality is often represented in mythical syzygy symbols, which are expressions of parental imagos; the singular power of this particular archetype is considered due to an unusually intense repression of unconscious material concerning the parental imagos. Archetypal images are described as preexistent, available and active from the moment of birth as possibilities of ideas which are subsequently elaborated by the individual.
The anima image in particular is seen to be active in childhood, projecting superhuman qualities on the mother before sinking back into the unconscious under the influence of external reality. In a therapeutic sense, the concept of the anima is considered critical to the understanding of male psychology. There is really a curious coincidence between astrological and psychological facts, so that one can isolate time from the characteristics of an individual, and also, one can deduce characteristics from a certain time. Therefore we have to conclude that what we call psychological motives are in a way identical with star positions . . . We must form a peculiar hypothesis. This hypothesis says that the dynamics of our psyche is not just identical with the position of the stars . . . better to assume that it is a phenomenon of time – Carl G. Jung in 1929
Although “wholeness” seems at first sight to be nothing but an abstract idea (like anima and animus), it is nevertheless empirical in so far as it is anticipated by the psyche in the form of spontaneous or autonomous symbols. These are the quaternity or mandala symbols, which occur not only in the dreams of modern people who have never heard of them, but are widely disseminated in the historical records of many peoples and many epochs. Their significance as symbols of unity and totality is amply confirmed by history as well as by empirical psychology. ~Carl Jung, CW 9ii, Para 59
The “soul” which accrues to ego-consciousness during the opus has a feminine character in the man and a masculine character in a woman. His anima wants to reconcile and unite; her animus tries to discern and discriminate. ~Carl Jung, CW 16, Para 522
When animus and anima meet, the animus draws his sword of power and the anima ejects her poison of illusion and seduction. The outcome need not always be negative, since the two are equally likely to fall in love (a special instance of love at first sight). ~~Carl Jung, CW 9ii, Page 338
If this results in a considerable increase of her power, she will acquit herself none too well. She becomes inferior, thus providing her husband with the welcome proof that it is not he, the hero, who is inferior in private, but his wife. In return the wife can cherish the illusion, so attractive to many, that at least she has married a hero, unperturbed by her own uselessness. This little game of illusion is often taken to be the whole meaning of life. Two Essays on Analytical Psychology, CW 7 (1957). “The Relations between the Ego and the Unconscious” P.309
If this results in a considerable increase of her power, she will acquit herself none too well. She becomes inferior, thus providing her husband with the welcome proof that it is not he, the hero, who is inferior in private, but his wife. In return the wife can cherish the illusion, so attractive to many, that at least she has married a hero, unperturbed by her own uselessness. This little game of illusion is often taken to be the whole meaning of life. ~Carl Jung, CW 7, Page 209
As the animus is partial to argument, he can best be seen at work in disputes where both parties know they are right. Men can argue in a very womanish way, too, when they are anima – possessed and have thus been transformed into the animus of their own anima. ~Carl Jung, CW 9ii, Page 29
Archetypes are complexes of experience that come upon us like fate, and their effects are felt in our most personal life. The anima no longer crosses our path as a goddess, but, it may be, as an intimately personal misadventure, or perhaps as our best venture. When, for instance, a highly esteemed professor in his seventies abandons his family and runs off with a young red-headed actress, we know that the gods have claimed another victim. ~Carl Jung, CW 9i, Page 62
Every man carries within him the eternal image of woman, not the image of this or that particular woman, but a definite feminine image. This image is fundamentally unconscious; an hereditary factor of primordial origin engraved in the living organic system of the man, an imprint or “archetype” of all the ancestral experiences of the female, a deposit, as it were, of all the impressions ever made by woman-in short, an inherited system of psychic adaptation. Even if no women existed, it would still be possible, at any given time, to deduce from this unconscious image exactly how a woman would have to be constituted psychically. The same is true of the woman: she too has her inborn image of man.” ~Carl Jung, CW 17, Page 338
With a little self-criticism one can see through the shadow-so far as its nature is personal. But when it appears as an archetype, one encounters the same difficulties as with anima and animus. In other words, it is quite within the bounds of possibility for a man to recognize the relative evil of his nature, but it is a rare and shattering experience for him to gaze into the face of absolute evil. ~Carl Jung, CW 9ii, Para 19
The symbol is a living body, corpus et anima; hence the “child” is such an apt formula for the symbol. The uniqueness of the psyche can never enter wholly into reality; it can only be realized approximately, though it still remains the absolute basis of all consciousness.
The deeper “layers” of the psyche lose their individual uniqueness as they retreat farther and farther into darkness. “Lower down,” that is to say as they approach the autonomous functional systems, they become increasingly collective until they are universalized and extinguished in the body’s materiality, i.e., in chemical substances. The body’s carbon is simply carbon. Hence “at bottom” the psyche is simply “world.”
In this sense I hold Kerenyi to be absolutely right when he says that in the symbol the world itself is speaking. The more archaic and “deeper,” that is the more physiological, the symbol is, the more collective and universal, the more “material” it is. The more abstract, differentiated, and specified it is, and the more its nature approximates to conscious uniqueness and individuality, the more it sloughs off its universal character. Having finally attained full consciousness, it runs the risk of becoming a mere allegory which nowhere oversteps the bounds of conscious comprehension, and is then exposed to all sorts of attempts at rationalistic and therefore inadequate explanation. ~Carl Jung, CW 9i, Page 291
The persona, the anima, and the little game of illusion that gives meaning to many lives due to getting incapacitated somehow the persona, the ideal picture of a man as he should be, is inwardly compensated by feminine weakness, and as the individual outwardly plays the strong man, so he becomes inwardly a woman, i.e., the anima, for it is the anima that reacts to the persona. But because the inner world is dark and invisible to the extroverted consciousness, and because a man is all the less capable of conceiving his weaknesses the more he is identified with the persona, the persona’s counterpart, the anima, remains completely in the dark and is at once projected, so that our hero comes under the heel of his wife’s slipper.
If this results in a considerable increase of her power, she will acquit herself none too well. She becomes inferior, thus providing her husband with the welcome proof that it is not he, the hero, who is inferior in private, but his wife. In return the wife can cherish the illusion, so attractive to many, that at least she has married a hero, unperturbed by her own uselessness. This little game of illusion is often taken to be the whole meaning of life. ~Carl Jung, CW 7, Page 309
The concept of archetypes as the mode of expression of the collective unconscious is discussed. In addition to the purely personal unconscious hypothesized by Freud, a deeper unconscious level is felt to exist. This deeper level manifests itself in universal archaic images expressed in dreams, religious beliefs, myths, and fairy-tales.
The archetypes, as unfiltered psychic experience, appear sometimes in their most primitive and naive forms (in dreams), sometimes in a considerably more complex form due to the operation of conscious elaboration (in myths). Archetypal images expressed in religious dogma in particular are thoroughly elaborated into formalized structures which, while by expressing the unconscious in a circuitous manner, prevent direct confrontation with it. Since the Protestant Reformation rejected nearly all of the carefully constructed symbol structures, man has felt increasingly isolated and alone without his gods; at a loss to replenish his externalized symbols, he must turn to their source in the unconscious. The search into the unconscious involves confronting the shadow, man’s hidden nature; the anima/animus, a hidden opposite gender in each individual; and beyond, the archetype of meaning. These are archetypes susceptible to personification; the archetypes of transformation, which express the process of individuation itself, are manifested in situations.
As archetypes penetrate consciousness, they influence the perceived experience of normal and neurotic people; a too powerful archetype may totally possess the individual and cause psychosis. The therapeutic process takes the unconscious archetypes into account in two ways: they are made as fully conscious as possible, then synthesized with the conscious by recognition and acceptance. It is observed that since modern man has a highly developed ability to dissociate, simple recognition may not be followed by appropriate action; it is thus felt that moral judgment and counsel is often required in the course of treatment.
The result of a phenomenological study of psychic structure, consisting of the observance and description of the products of the unconscious, is described as the development of a psychological typology of situations and figures, called motifs, in the psychic processes of man. The principal types of motifs of the human figure include the shadow, the wise old man, the child, the mother as a supraordinate personality or a maiden, the anima in man and the animus in woman. One such motif is the Kore figure, belonging in man to the anima type and in woman to the supraordinate personality, or the self; like the other psychic figures, the Kore is observed to have both positive and negative manifestations. Images such as the Kore are considered to rise from an area of the personality which has an impersonal, collective nature, and to express this psychic material in the conscious. The experience of these archetypal expressions has the effect of widening the scope of consciousness. Several dream visions described by men and women are analyzed in their manifestations of the Kore symbol as supraordinate personality and anima. I reference. ~The phenomenology of the spirit in fairytales. 1. Concerning the word “spirit.” In: Jung, C., Collected Works of C. G. Jung, Vol. 9, Part 1. 2nd ed., Princeton University Press, 1968. 451 p. (p. 207-214).
Anima and animus are both characterized by an extraordinary many-sidedness. In a marriage it is always the contained who projects this image upon the container, while the latter is only partially able to project his unconscious image upon his partner. The more unified and simple this partner is, the less complete the projection. In which case, this highly fascinating image hangs as it were in mid air, as though waiting to be filled out by a living person. There are certain types of women who seem to be made by nature to attract anima projections; indeed one could almost speak of a definite “anima type.” The so-called “sphinxlike” character is an indispensable part of their equipment, also an equivocalness, an intriguing elusiveness — not an indefinite blur that offers nothing, but an indefiniteness that seems full of promises, like the speaking silence of a Mona Lisa. A woman of this kind is both old and young, mother and daughter, of more than doubtful chastity, childlike, and yet endowed with a naive cunning that is extremely disarming to men. Not every man of real intellectual power can be an animus, for the animus must be a master not so much of fine ideas as of fine words — words seemingly full of meaning which purport to leave a great deal unsaid. He must also belong to the “misunderstood” class or be in some way at odds with his environment, so that the idea of self-sacrifice can insinuate itself. He must be a rather questionable hero, a man with possibilities, which is not to say that an animus projection may not discover a real hero long before he has become perceptible to the sluggish wits of the man of “average intelligence.” ~Carl Jung, Marriage as a Psychological Relationship, (1925):
“SOUL. [psyche, personality, persona, anima,] I have been compelled, in my investigations into the structure of the unconscious, to make a conceptual distinction between soul and psyche. By psyche I understand the totality of all psychic processes, conscious as well as unconscious. By soul, on the other hand, I understand a clearly demarcated functional complex that can best be described as a “personality.” In order to make clear what I mean by this, I must introduce some further points of view. It is, in particular, the phenomena of somnambulism, double consciousness, split personality, etc., whose investigation we owe primarily to the French school, that have enabled us to accept the possibility of a plurality of personalities in one and the same individual.” ~Carl Jung, CW 6, Para 797
“The name’s people give to their experiences are often very revealing. What is the origin of the word Seele? Like the English word soul, it comes from the Gothic saiwalu and the old German saiwalô, and these can be connected etymologically with the Greek aiolos, ‘quick-moving, twinkling, iridescent’. The Greek word psyche also means ‘butterfly’. Saiwalô is related on the other side in the Old Slavonic sila, ‘strength’. These connections throw light on the original meaning of the word soul; it is moving force, that is, life-force.
The- Latin words animus, ‘spirit’, and anima, ‘soul’, arc the same as the Greek anemos, ‘wind’. The other Greek word for ‘wind’, pneuma , also means ‘spirit’. In Gothic we find the same word in us-anan, ‘to breathe out’, and in Latin it is anhelare, ‘to pant’. In Old High German, atum,‘breath’. In Arabic, ‘wind’ is rih, and rüh is ‘soul, spirit’. The Greek word psyche has similar connections; it is related to psychein, ‘to breathe’, psychos, ‘cool’, psychros, ‘cold, chill’, and physa, ‘bellows’. These connections show clearly how in Latin, Greek, and Arabic the names given to the soul are related to the notion of moving air, the “cold breath of the spirits.” And this is probably the reason why the primitive view also endows the soul with an invisible breath-body.” (~Carl Jung, CW 8, Para 663-664
But what we have here is a masculine figure which, in view of the role it plays in the Miller fantasies, must be regarded as a personification of the masculine component of the woman’s personality. (Cf. pi. xvii.) In my later writings I have called this personification the “animus.” ~Carl Jung, CW 5, Para 267
The mother’s influence is mainly on the Eros of her son, therefore it was only logical that Oedipus should end up by marrying his mother. But the father exerts his influence on the mind or spirit of his daughter—on her “Logos.” This he does by increasing her intellectuality, often to a pathological degree which in my later writings I have described as “animus possession. ~Carl Jung, CW 5, Para 272
The man becomes rigidly set in his previous attitude, while the woman remains caught in her emotional ties and fails to develop her reason and understanding, whose place is then taken by equally obstinate and inept “animus” opinions. ~Carl Jung, CW 5, Para 458
Chiwantopel is a typical animus-figure, that is to say, a personification of the masculine side of the woman’s psyche. ~Carl Jung, CW 5, Para 462
It is all up with the man whom the whims of fortune bring into contact with this infantile woman: he will at once be made identical with her animus-hero and relentlessly set up as the ideal figure, threatened with the direst punishments should he ever make a face that shows the least departure from the ideal! ~Carl Jung, CW 5, Para 465
The animus, a typical “son”-hero, is not after her at all; true to his ancient prototype, he is seeking the mother. This youthful hero is always the son-lover of the mother-goddess and is doomed to an early death. ~Carl Jung, CW 5, Para 466
The hero as an animus-figure acts vicariously for the conscious individual; that is to say, he does what the subject ought, could, or would like to do, but does not do. ~Carl Jung, CW 5, Para 469
Hiawatha to his task is represented by Nokomis, the mother, who is a feminine principle in the breast of the hero. The latter is Hiawatha’s anima, and the former would correspond to the animus of the Terrible Mother. ~Carl Jung, CW 5, Para 543
These are archetypes like the anima, animus, wise old man, witch, shadow, earth-mother, etc., and the organizing dominants, the self, the circle, and the quaternity, i.e., the four functions or aspects of the self (cf. pis. lvi, lx) or of consciousness. ~Carl Jung, CW 5, Para 611
The morally significant act is delegated to the hero, while Miss Miller only looks on admiringly and applaudingly, without, it seems, realizing that her animus-figure is constrained to do what she herself so signally fails to do. ~Carl Jung, CW 5, Para 675
When Chiwantopel calls the snake his “little sister,” this is not without significance for Miss Miller, because the hero is in fact her brother-beloved, her “ghostly lover,” the animus. She herself is his life-snake which brings death to him. ~Carl Jung, CW 5, Para 679
If, therefore, we speak of the anima of a man, we must logically speak of the animus of a woman, if we are to give the soul of a woman its right name. ~Carl Jung, CW 6, Para 805
In woman the compensating figure is of a masculine character, and can therefore appropriately be termed the animus. If it was no easy task to describe what is meant by the anima, the difficulties become almost insuperable when we set out to describe the psychology of the animus. ~Carl Jung, CW 7, Para 328
If I were to attempt to put in a nutshell the difference between man and woman in this respect, i.e., what it is that characterizes the animus as opposed to the anima, I could only say this: as the anima produces moods, so the animus produces opinions; and as the moods of a man issue from a shadowy background, so the opinions of a woman rest on equally unconscious prior assumptions. ~Carl Jung, CW 7, Para 331
The animus does not appear as one person, but as a plurality of persons. ~Carl Jung, CW 7, Para 332
This collection of condemnatory judges, a sort of College of Preceptors, corresponds to a personification of the animus. The animus is rather like an assembly of fathers or dignitaries of some kind who lay down incontestable, “rational,” ex cathedra judgments. ~Carl Jung, CW 7, Para 332
It goes without saying that the animus is just as often projected as the anima. ~Carl Jung, CW 7, Para 333
It would be insufficient to characterize the animus merely as a conservative, collective conscience; he is also a neologist who, in flagrant contradiction to his correct opinions, has an extraordinary weakness for difficult and unfamiliar words which act as a pleasant substitute for the odious task of reflection. ~Carl Jung, CW 7, Para 333
Like the anima, the animus is a jealous lover. He is an adept at putting, In place of the real man, an opinion about him, the exceedingly disputable grounds for which are never submitted to criticism. ~Carl Jung, CW 7, Para 334
Animus opinions are invariably collective, and they override individuals and individual judgments in exactly the same way as the anima thrusts her emotional anticipations and projections between man and wife. ~Carl Jung, CW 7, Para 334
Men can be pretty venomous here, for it is an inescapable fact that the animus always plays up the anima—and vice versa, of course—so that all further discussion becomes pointless. ~Carl Jung, CW 7, Para 334
Like the anima, the animus is a jealous lover. He is an adept at putting, in place of the real man, an opinion about him, the exceedingly disputable grounds for which are never submitted to criticism. ~Carl Jung, CW 7, Para 334
Animus opinions are invariably collective, and they override individuals and individual judgments in exactly the same way as the anima thrusts her emotional anticipations and projections between man and wife. ~Carl Jung, CW 7, Para 334
In intellectual women the animus encourages a critical disputatiousness and would-be highbrowism, which, however, consists essentially in harping on some irrelevant weak point and nonsensically making it the main one. ~Carl Jung, CW 7, Para 335
Without knowing it, such women are solely intent upon exasperating the man and are, in consequence, the more completely at the mercy of the animus. “Unfortunately I am always right,” one of these creatures once confessed to me. ~Carl Jung, CW 7, Para 335
The animus does not belong to the function of conscious relationship; his function is rather to facilitate relations with the unconscious. Instead of the woman merely associating opinions with external situations—situations which she ought to think about consciously—the animus, as an associative function, should be directed inwards, where it could associate the contents of the unconscious. ~Carl Jung, CW 7, Para 336
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