Black Books

Jung described Wotan’s attributes as follows:

He is the god of oracles, of secret knowledge, of sorcery, and he is also the equivalent of Hermes psychopompos.

And you remember he has, like Osiris, only one eye; the other eye is sacrificed to the underworld.

Therefore. he is an exceedingly apt symbol for our modern world in which the unconscious really comes to the foreground like a river, and forces us to turn one eye inward upon it, in order that we may be adapted to that side also; we feel now that the greatest enemy is threatening us, not from without but from within.

So on account of all his qualities, Wotan expresses the spirit of the time to an extent which is uncanny, and that wisdom or knowledge is really wild- it is nature’s wisdom.

Wotan is not the God of civilized beings but a condition of nature.  ~The Black Books, Vol. 1, Page 80

This was not Jung’s first encounter with Wotan, the storm God. In a draft for her biography of Jung, Lucy Heyer narrated the event:

“This friendly and mildly temperate landscape was struck by a severe catastrophic storm, a rare natural event at this ferocity, just as the child was being taken for baptism in the church.

The home-borne young mother was anxious to see the young one safely brought through the ferocity and the eclipse. In the family, this event fell into oblivion until fifteen years later the boy wrote a poem that described a storm catastrophe.

He dedicated it to his mother, and only at that moment she remembered again how threateningly the storm god had accompanied the baptism of her firstborn on that day of baptism in late summer 1875.

When Jung related this poem and his mother’s reaction, he noticed that he had often had such inspirations as this poem, contents foreign to consciousness that corresponded to an objective event, imposed themselves on him and sought expression.

That storm poem, which was a long time in the possession of the mother, was unfortunately later lost” (Lucy Heyer Grote papers, University of Basel Archives, “Biographie von Carl Gustav Jung,” “Kindheit,” p. 1). On her biography, see my Jung Stripped Bare by His Biographers, Even (London: Karnac, 2005). ~The Black Books, Page 79, fn 247