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The Red Book

If I imitate Christ, he is always ahead of me and I can never reach the goal, unless I reach it in him. But thus I move beyond myself and beyond time, in and through which I am as I am. I thus blunder into Christ and his time, which created him thus and not otherwise. And so I am outside my time, despite the fact that my life is in this time and I am split between the life of Christ and my life that still belongs to this present time. But if I am truly to understand Christ, I must realize how Christ actually lived only his own life, and imitated no one. He did not emulate any model.

If I thus truly imitate Christ, I do not imitate anyone, I emulate no one, but go my own way, and I will also no longer call myself a Christian. Initially, I wanted to emulate and imitate Christ by living my life, while observing his precepts. A voice in me protested against this and wanted to remind me that my time also had its prophets who struggle against the yoke with which the past burdens us. I did not succeed in uniting Christ with the prophets of this time. The one demands bearing, the other discarding; the one commands submission, the other the will. How should I think of this contradiction without doing injustice to either? What I could not conjoin in my mind probably lends itself to living one after the other.

And so I decided to cross over into lower and everyday life, my life, and to begin down there, where I stood. When thinking leads to the unthinkable, it is time to return to simple life. What thinking cannot solve, life solves, and what action never decides is reserved for thinking. If I ascend to the highest and most difficult on the one hand, and seek to eke out redemption that reaches even higher, then the true way does not lead upward, but toward the depths, since only my other leads me beyond myself But acceptance of the other means a descent into the opposite, from seriousness into the laughable, from suffering into the cheerful, from the beautiful into the ugly, from the pure into the impure. ~Carl Jung; Red Book; Nox Secunda; Page 193