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Mysterium Coniunctionis

Since the soul animates the body, just as the soul is animated by the spirit, she tends to favor the body and everything bodily, sensuous, and emotional. She lies caught in “the chains” of Physis, and she desires “beyond physical necessity.” She must be called back by the “counsel of the spirit” from her lostness in matter and the world.

This is a relief to the body too, for it not only enjoy the advantage of being animated by the soul, but suffers under the disadvantage of having to serve as the instrument of the soul’s appetites and desires. Her wish-fantasies impel it to deeds which it would not rouse itself without this incentive, for the inertia of matter is inborn in it and probably forms its only interest except for the satisfaction of physiological instincts. Hence the separation means withdrawing the soul and her projections from the bodily sphere and from all environmental conditions relating to the body.

In modern terms it would be a turning away from sensuous reality, a withdrawal of the fantasy-projections that give “the ten thousand things” their attractive and deceptive glamour. In other words, it means introversion, introspection, meditation, and the careful investigation of desires and their motives. Since, as Dorn says, the soul “stands between good and evil,” the disciple will have every opportunity to discover the dark side of his personality, his inferior wishes and motives, childish fantasies and resentments, etc.; in short, all those traits he habitually hides from himself. He will be confronted with his shadow, but more rarely with the good qualities of which he is accustomed to make a show anyway.

He will learn to know his soul, that is, his anima and Shakti who conjures up a delusory world for him. He attains this knowledge, Dorn supposes, with the help of the spirit, by which are meant all the higher mental faculties such as reason, insight, and moral discrimination. But, in so far as the spirit is also a “window into eternity” and, as the anima rationalis, immortal.

It conveys to the soul a certain “divine influx” and the knowledge of higher things, wherein consists precisely its supposed animation of the soul. This higher world has an impersonal character and consists on the one hand of all those traditional, intellectual, and moral values which educate and cultivate the individual, and, on the other, of the products of the unconscious, which present themselves to consciousness as archetypal ideas. Usually the former predominate. But when, weakened by age or by criticism, they lose their power of conviction, the archetypal ideas rush in to fill the gap. Freud, correctly recognized this situation, called the traditional values by “super-ego,” but the archetypal ideas remained unknown to him, as the belief in reason and the positivism of the nineteenth century never relaxed their hold. A materialistic view of the world ill accords with the reality and autonomy of the psyche. ~Carl Jung; Mysterium Coniunctionis; Pages 472-473.