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…Although the ego-consciousness is at first identical with the persona

999 extinction

Two Essays on Analytical Psychology

It would be wrong to leave the matter as it stands without at the same time recognizing that there is, after all, something individual in the peculiar choice and delineation of the persona, and that despite the exclusive identity of the ego-consciousness with the persona the unconscious self, one’s real individuality, is always present and makes itself felt indirectly if not directly.

Although the ego-consciousness is at first identical with the persona—that compromise role in which we parade before the community—yet the unconscious self can never be repressed to the point of extinction.

Its influence is chiefly manifest in the special nature of the contrasting and compensating contents of the unconscious.

The purely personal attitude of the conscious mind evokes reactions on the part of the unconscious, and these, together with personal repressions, contain the seeds of individual development in the guise of collective fantasies.

Through the analysis of the personal unconscious, the conscious mind becomes suffused with collective material which brings with it the
elements of individuality.

I am well aware that this conclusion must be almost unintelligible to anyone not familiar with my views and technique, and particularly so to those who habitually regard the unconscious from the standpoint of Freudian theory.

But if the reader will recall my example of the philosophy student, he can form a rough idea of what I mean.

At the beginning of the treatment the patient was quite unconscious of the fact that her relation to her father was a fixation, and that she was therefore seeking a man like her father, whom she could then meet with her intellect.

This in itself would not have been a mistake if her intellect had not had that peculiarly protesting character such as is unfortunately often encountered in intellectual women.

Such an intellect is always trying to point out mistakes in others; it is pre-eminently critical, with a disagreeably personal undertone, yet it always wants to be considered objective.

This invariably makes a man bad-tempered, particularly if, as so often happens, the criticism touches on some weak spot which, in the interests of fruitful discussion, were better avoided.

But far from wishing the discussion to be fruitful, it is the unfortunate peculiarity of this feminine intellect to seek out a man’s weak spots, fasten on them, and exasperate him.

This is not usually a conscious aim, but rather has the unconscious purpose of forcing a man into a superior position and thus making him an object of admiration.

The man does not as a rule notice that he is having the role of the hero thrust upon him; he merely finds her taunts so odious that in future he will go a long way to avoid meeting the lady.

In the end the only man who can stand her is the one who gives in at the start, and therefore has nothing wonderful about him. ~Carl Jung, CW 7, Para 247