For the parental imago is possessed of a quite extraordinary power; it inﬂuences the psychic life of the child so enormously that we must ask ourselves whether we may attribute such magical power to an ordinary human being at all.
Obviously he possesses it, but we are bound to ask whether it is really his property.
Man “possesses” many things which he has never acquired but has inherited from his ancestors. He is not born as a tabula rasa [blank slate], he is merely born unconscious.
But he brings with him systems that are organized and ready to function in a speciﬁcally human way, and these he owes to millions of years of human development.
Just as the migratory and nest-building instincts of birds were never learnt or acquired individually, man brings with him at birth the ground-plan of his nature, and not only of his individual nature but of his collective nature.
These inherited systems correspond to the human situations that have existed since primeval times: youth and old age, birth and
death, sons and daughters, fathers and mothers, mating, and so on.
Only the individual consciousness experiences these things for the ﬁrst time, but not the bodily system and the unconscious.
For them they are only the habitual functioning of instincts that were preformed long ago. Carl Jung, CW 4, Para 728