I have been doing research into the works of Carl Jung and exploring the collective unconscious. Has anyone else explored Jungian psychology in relation to dream interpretation or understanding the internal journey of spiritual development as it relates to druidry?
Most def! I use jungian and post jungian approaches to dream work (and also in my analysis of society and what drives people, why we do the weird stuff we do). By post-jungian I mean people like James Hillman and archetypal psychology.
Are there certain ideas you’re wanting to follow more deeply?
Where are you finding jungian ideas informing your druidry?
I recently perused Jung’s Psychology and Alchemy from the collected works series and it sparked an interest in better understanding my own dreaming. The main ideas I’ve been pursuing have been the integration of the elements of the self, and the exploration of the foundation and personal/collective unconscious.
The ideas in Jung’s Psychology and Alchemy have influenced my druidry in that they’ve given me a kind of roadmap to follow with dream analysis and guidance, especially in connection my my anima, shadow, and sage aspects.
I generally identify my anima as a spark of fire light, often in the form of a lantern, but occasionally in the form of a young woman, my shadow has evolved into the form of a crow, though sometimes they are a well dressed and refined man, and my sage tends toward coming as images of a stag or oak tree, and on occasion, a bearded woodsman with a robe and staff, carrying the lantern I associated with my anima.
I like how Jungian thought brought awareness of the autonomy of the dream figures, they have their lives even when we aren’t dreaming about them. I find “parts work” very helpful, a term some give to what you’re describing. Different parts of ourselves have different and (at times conflicting) ideas and interests. And sometimes they are autonomous figures of the collective psyche, not parts of ourselves at all. Jungian psychology relativized the waking ego, the western day ego, into a living psychic ecology within which we are situated. I find that liberating.
Not so much through the Dreamwork but through scrying or Active Imagination is how Jung termed it . The Art of Scrying I learned from JMG’s Druid Magic Handbook and is the way I perform this work. Particularly Scrying Spirit Within and engaging and conversing with my unconscious archetypes.
Excellent topic. Thanks you. I look forward to reading the replies. Unfortunately, I don’t know enough to make any meaning contributions to this conversation, but I’m hoping to learn a little something. My esoteric studies have brought me to Jungian philosophy, along with Stoicism and Neo-Platonism. I’ll take your responses off the air. Thanks!
I have been having increasing encounters with my animus (animating spirit) recently as I move out into the woods, and find that giving them time and space to convey whatever messages they have relieves a lot of the stress involved with moving. One thing I’ve enjoyed about Jung is his focus on associations with dream encounters and how our waking experiences become the means by which the subconscious communicates. example: I had a dream that I was in a ight club and there were several people around and there was a hunched old woman in one corner and somehow I got the impression that we were supposed to dance and it was up to me to initiate it, but I didn’t and woke up feeling a sense of loss. After looking over my notes from studying Jung I realized The old woman was a part of my psyche I was denying and that I would need to assimilate them into my person by welcoming them (i.e. asking them to dance) and that doing so would open up/release something needing my attention.
I have been reading about Jungian psychology, specifically about the Puer Aeternus archetype. Along with that, I have been scrying the Ogham fews. My reading about the archetypes has affected what I see during scrying, and as a side effect of that, I have been having many more dreams than I normally have, or at least, remembering more of my dreams.
I now know that I am getting in touch with my anima, which has been enlightening. In addition to the normal note-taking after scrying, I have been writing down my dreams right after waking.
Marie-Louise von Franz, a student of Jung’s, has some good books about dream interpretation, if you don’t already know that. In addition to The Problem of the Puer Aeternus book I mentioned above, there is also a great book on dream interpretation she did together with Fraser Boa called Way of the Dream.
Robert Bosnak has a sweet little book called “A Little Course In Dreams” that is very good. Bosnak is a Jungian analyst who, as well as other things, ran studies at Harvard on dreams and immune function for many years.
The book is super accessible. He talks about recall, working with dream series, how to re-enter the dream scape, and introduces a basic 3 colored model of alchemy (black, white, red). Probably more stuff also, It’s been a lot of years since I read it, but this thread brought it to mind. Helpful little text.
Speaking of Robert Bosnak, here is something that just came through my email and might interest people in this thread, he runs a free worldwide dream group once a week.
I’ve studied Jung along with Feud when I was in psychology major. I honestly couldn’t relate at all and doesn’t feel it has any connection with my beliefs in druidism.