Tuesday, October 13, 2015

The Cycle of Life Goodreads Giveaway

Goodreads Book Giveaway

The Cycle of Life by Erel Shalit

The Cycle of Life

by Erel Shalit

Giveaway ends December 20, 2015.
See the giveaway details at Goodreads.
Enter Giveaway
Fisher King Press publishes an eclectic mix of worthy books including 
Jungian Psychological Perspectives, Cutting-Edge Fiction, Poetry, 
and a growing list of alternative titles. 

Tuesday, September 8, 2015

Merritt on Guns and the American Psyche

Article by Dennis L. Merritt

The issues of gun violence and gun control will not be resolved unless addressed at the most basic level--the Second Amendment right to keep and bear arms. Even the gore of Sandy Hook barely moved the needle towards significant changes in gun control, implying a need for a more archetypal approach to the problem. (1)

The Founding Fathers wrote the Constitution to be the mythic foundation of America as a nation of laws. Archetypically the Constitution and the Bill of Rights are in the realm of the Bible: they are like the Ten Commandments for Americans. They strike the collective American psyche as the Word of God in a nation without a religious foundation, an important aspect of our uniqueness during the Age of the Enlightenment when they were written. (2)

The Second Amendment right “to keep and bear arms” is loaded with archetypal imagery in the guns themselves. There is a fierce and frightening beauty in these technological marvels of relative simplicity in design. With soul-frightening noise the bearer can project great and deadly force with these phallicy objects. The Lakota Sioux say such objects have great wakan, great power; archetypal power in a sacred sense. A gun in one's hand engages an ultimate archetype—death. Guns can impart a deadly sense of power to those feeling fearful and disempowered, but a power that moves one towards black-and white, good-and-evil distinctions because of the life-and-death potential guns wield. The power to kill and maim can quickly sweep the bearer into the domain of the god of war, Ares/Mars, the god behind the intoxication of gang warfare. An individual or a group can take justice into their own hands, subverting a society of laws.

Monday, August 31, 2015

The Orphan as Symbol

A review of Audrey Punnett’s The Orphan: A Journey to Wholeness

Review by Dyane Sherwood

Audrey Punnett has brought this powerful topic to our attention in a thoughtful and multifaceted book that is engaging, carefully researched, and clearly written.  As a Jungian analyst, she concerns herself with the effects on individuals of losing a parent in childhood and with the universal questions of the Orphan in each of us—that is, the underdeveloped aspects of our personalities that have lacked the nurturing, structure, and sense of security that they have needed to grow.

In her opening chapters, Dr. Punnett recounts the way the theme of the orphan seemed to find her, rather than her consciously seeking it out, after she had moved alone to Zurich to enter analytic training.  Throughout, one can sense her deep empathy with the loneliness of the parentless child.

Saturday, July 25, 2015

The Life of Buddha and Individuation

"The life of Buddha is an example of individuation. He was privileged and enjoyed every possible means of comfort and pleasure, sheltered from want. What moved him to want to experience the world beyond his palace? He went into the world of ordinary people and found sickness, poverty, and suffering. It seemed he felt his life was not complete until he had experienced the dark and sordid side of life. Only then could he fulfill his destiny as a spiritual sage. His life illustrates the idea that we are not completed by being good or by having what seems like perfection. Individuation as completion means filling out all of our possible conscious experiences and being aware of our potential, the pleasant and unpleasant, good and bad." Deldon Anne McNeely, Becoming: An Introduction to Jung's Concept of Individuation
Fisher King Press publishes an eclectic mix of worthy books including Jungian Psychological Perspectives, Cutting-Edge Fiction, Poetry, and a growing list of alternative titles. 

Monday, July 20, 2015

Letting Go of the Way We Wish Things Ideally Would Be

There are many worthy arguments for the existence of ideals. These include the role of ideals as an organizing principle around which people with similar values can gather. Like goals, ideals motivate us.

The need to be Jesus can lead to guilt, disillusionment, and dissatisfaction. The need to avoid the painful guilt of failing to achieve ideals often interferes in very practical ways with career development because they can never be satisfied with ordinary jobs. The shortfall from this ideal is predictable. This unconscious need to be great is often expressed by patients as dissatisfaction with their jobs, or as feelings that their work is meaningless or soulless. Sometimes the complaint is stronger; they feel that they are prostituting themselves. They may feel the same about their colleagues and bosses, who think only of profit. They say they want to do something that helps people or helps the environment or helps bring social justice. They often believe there is a job out there that will permit them to use their talents for some greater good or noble purpose.

Letting go of the way we wish things ideally would be can lead to more human development than the ideals themselves.
Guilt with a Twist: The Promethean Way

article by Lawrence H. Staples

We would have to be blind, however, not to acknowledge their danger. By definition, when ideals are our guide, we strive for perfection that does not exist in the real world. We strive for something that in the long run will frustrate us and depress us because we will fall short. We will experience failure. Goals are different. Having realistically attainable goals can serve us well.