Alchemy by Marie-Louise Von Franz

From Lecture 8, p. 238, Alchemy (Marie-Louise von Franz)…

“Question: Would you connect this with what you said earlier about the over analysed person who had to jump into the stream with the golden fish? Because that person was also staying outside the experience.

Dr. von Franz: Yes, but if he returns now and swims with the fish, he will not think he is a fish and he will not be caught in the fish existence. One returns to experience, naive experience, but one is no longer caught by it. To return to the water, to use the metaphor of the dream, would mean to go completely and spontaneously into the experience while something yet remains outside, as if a second part of the personality were watching the experience.

If you use Eastern terms, you could say that you go on living spontaneously but one part of you is concerned with Tao all the time. You are not caught by what is happening, but are directed towards Tao, and if you can detach from life as much as that you have reached immortality; that is something which cannot be altered even by death – death becomes a chance event which does not affect the nucleus of the personality, so that at least subjectively it is an experience of being immortal.

Question: Jumping into the water is like jumping consciously into the unconscious, isn’t it?

Dr. von Franz: No, not always; in that case I would say it meant jumping consciously into some experience, an experience of life. With an introvert it would be that. In this case it was not jumping into the unconscious – he did that long ago – it was jumping into life, beginning to live again without always thinking: ‘That’s my anima,’ and so on.

Remark: It would mean the river of live.

Dr. von Franz: Yes, getting into the river of life.”

From Jung, My Mother, and I, p. 351 (Jane Cabot Reid). “Onkel” is Dr. Carl Jung…

“I went on to tell Onkel that this being in Tao, as it were, was a wonderful feeling, like being carried on the crest of a wave. It was such a relief not to have to be a monkey on a stick and dance to everyone’s tune, and such a feeling of relief to feel harmony. Wonderful!

Onkel said that when the unconscious is predominant, it is just as if one were carried on a wave by a strong wind, and there is no effort. It is like a child being carried on one’s mother’s arms. It is a state of paradise, a definite condition of blessedness. One is carried on a wave of bliss. Then Onkel asked me if I remembered when I was a child, and went out on a lovely summer’s morning and was happy all day – at one with the whole of Nature and existence. At that moment, one is contained in the eternal flow of life. It is a state of blessedness. You are ‘at one,’ and it is paradise and a very definite religious experience. You are now in the stream, and God works from within, from the hidden treasure in the Self, conceived as God’s treasure.” — at Piltvice Lakes National Park-Croacia.