Elijah was one of the prophets of the Old Testament. He first appears in l Kings 17, bearing a message from God to Ahab, the king of Israel. In 1953, the Carmelite Pere Bruno wrote to Jung asking how one established the existence of an archetype. Jung replied by taking Elijah as an example, describing Ahim as a highly mythical personage, which did not prevent him from probably being a historical figure.
Drawing together descriptions of him throughout history, Jung described him as a “living archetype” who represented the collective unconscious and the self.
He noted that such a constellated archetype gave rise to new forms of assimilation and represented a compensation on the part of the unconscious (CW 18, §§ 1518- 31) . ~Black Books Vol. 2, Page 180, fn164
- Salome was the daughter of Herodias and the stepdaughter of King Herod.
In Matthew 14 and Mark 6, John the Baptist tells King Herod that it is unlawful for him to be married to his brother’s wife, and Herod puts him in prison.
Salome (who is not named but simply called the daughter of Herodias) dances before Herod on his birthday, and he promises to give her anything she wishes for.
She requests the head of John the Baptist, who is then beheaded.
In the late nineteenth century, the figure of Salome fascinated painters and writers, including Guillaume Apollinaire, Gustave Flaubert, Stephane Mallarme, Gustave Moreau, Oscar Wilde, and Franz von Stuck, featuring in many works.
See Bram Dijkstra, Idols of Perversity: Fantasies of Feminine Evil in Fin-de-Siecle Culture (New York: Oxford University Press, 1986), pp. 379 – 98. ~Black Books, Vol. 2, Page180, fn 165.
- For Jung’s commentary on this entry, see LN, pp. 178- 83. In the 1925 seminar, Jung recounted: “I used the same technique of the descent, but this time I went much deeper.
The first time I should say I reached a depth of about one thousand feet, but this time it was a cosmic depth.
It was like going to the moon, or like the feeling of a descent into empty space.
First the picture was of a crater, or a ring chain of mountains, and my feeling association was that of one dead, as if oneself were a victim.
It was the mood of the land of the hereafter.
I could see two people, an old man with a white beard and a young girl who was very beautiful.
I assumed them to be real and listened to what they were saying.
The old man said he was Elijah and I was quite shocked, but she was even more upsetting because she was Salome.
I said to myself that there was a queer mixture: Salome and Elijah, but Elijah assured me that he and Salome had been together since eternity.
This also upset me. With them was a black serpent who had an affinity for me.
I stuck to Elijah as being the most reasonable of the lot, for he seemed to have a mind.
I was exceedingly doubtful about Salome.
We had a long conversation but I did not understand it.
Of course I thought of the fact of my father being a clergyman as being the explanation of my having figures like this.
How about this old man then? Salome was not to be touched upon.
It was only much later that I found her association with Elijah quite natural.
Whenever you take journeys like this you find a young girl with an old man” (Introduction to Jungian Psychology, pp. 680 – 89). Jung then refers to examples of this pattern in the work of Herman Melville, Gustav Meyrink, and Rider Haggard, in the Gnostic legend of Simon Magus (see Book 6, p. 217, n. 214), in Kundry and Klingsor
from Wagner’s Parsifal (see Book 4, pp. 218ff.), and in Francesco Colonna’s Hypneromachia.
In Memories, he noted: “In myths the snake is a frequent counterpart of the hero.
There are numerous accounts of their affinity. … Therefore the presence of the snake was an indication of a hero-myth” (p. 206).
Of Salome, he said: “Salome is an anima figure. She is blind because she does not see the meaning of things.
Elijah is the figure of the wise old prophet and represents the factor of intelligence and knowledge; Salome, the erotic element. One might say that the two figures are personifications of Logos and Eros.
But such a definition would be excessively intellectual.
It is more meaningful to let the figures be what they were for me at that time- namely, events and experiences” (lntroduction to Jungian Psychology. pp. 96- 97).
In 1955- 56, Jung wrote: “For purely psychological reasons I have elsewhere attempted to equate the masculine consciousness with the concept of Logos and the feminine with that of Eros.
By Logos I meant discrimination, judgment, insight, and by Eros I meant the placing into relation” (Mysterium Coniunctionis, CW 14, § 224).
On Jung’s reading of Elijah and Salome in terms of Logos and Eros , respectively, see LN, Appendix B, “Commentaries” (pp. 562ff.). ~Black Books, Vol. 2 Page183, fn 182
- Monday. The following are the minutes for Jung’s December 19, 1913, talk on “The psychology of the unconscious” to the Zurich Psychoanalytical Society:
For the primitives there exists an intimate relationship with reality, which leads to a big specification of perception, which expresses itself in language through the absence of universal concepts.
This intensive connection with reality appears to us as concretism. e.g., the man has killed a rabbit is expressed through: he, one, animated, arrow etc. shot rabbit.
Hence, instead of the concept man a specific image.-There is not a simple plural, but e.g., in Guinea a Dualis, Trialis, ~adralis. The original numerical value is obviously not arithmetic, but mystical, it is a character of quality.
This way an immense complication of language emerges.
There must always be e.g. for animals the following information: position in space, distance, direction; e.g., “table” needs the addition of: not animated, upright, wooden; e.g., I eat bread = I am breading or something similar depending on the type of food.
This concretism hinders the emergence of abstract concepts for a long time.
Shock is in negro language: coronary artery in the stomach tears. Anger: the human’s aching stomach.
Time: walking sun. Milk: the hunter does not eat. Scorpion: man watches and cries.
Tarantula: bites man, he goes home and tells.
Here we can already see the interference of the subjective observer in the objective.
In the further development this leads to the primitive’s ability to add qualities to things against all the experience and to give random meanings to symbols. e.g., the corn is a stag, equally the stag is a feather or clouds, cotton etc. are feathers.
The inner psychological value has the same meaning as objective in reality. e.g., each disease, according to a primitive language, is an unfulfilled desire of the soul.-Only through participation mystique something becomes effective. E.g., venom does not kill in itself, but only the venom that is bewitched.- A psychological system is forced upon the things.
For the Chinese the death statue of the husband is still able to impregnate.
Hence the enormous importance of dreams, and there is no difference between dream and experience; the origin in the subjective prevails over the object.
There are causal effects.
Everything can be understood as a consequence of thinking, which falls together with the deed.
If one would only act, nothing would be done. That is why the ceremonies have to be done in a correct way.
Thus they are full of hallucination.
The inner world imposes itself the same way as the external world; hence effects on nature through words: e.g., not: the sun shines and lets grow, but: our father thinks.
Finding analogies is therefore a highly important activity.
It is sufficient to tell the myth and the effect told by the myth will take place.
The myth was originally a healing formula through the power of the mind. Magic of analogies to reach sublimatio
It follows from that: the primitive mind knows two mental activities: 1. concrete rendering of reality, 2. psychic interior world imposes itself on reality.
The aim is: to put the spiritual over concrete things.
To let oneself be killed for faith, i.e., to emphasize the importance of the spirit. ~Black Books, Vol. 2 Page 184
- Cf. William Blake: “To see a World in a Grain of Sand / And a Heaven in a Wild Flower, / Hold Infinity in the palm of your hand / And Eternity in an hour” (Auguries of Innocence). ~Black Books, Vol. 2 Page185