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Episode 55 - Identifying & Integrating the Personal Shadow

This Jungian Life

Release Date: 04/18/2019

Episode 152 - Navigating Young Adulthood: Risks & Rewards show art Episode 152 - Navigating Young Adulthood: Risks & Rewards

This Jungian Life

The twenties are a period of emerging adulthood, a time to engage in the maturational tasks of finding one’s place in the wider world and forming intimate relationships. This stage of life calls for the ego strength necessary to make initial choices about work, intimacy, money, lifestyle and values. The protections and constraints of family, education, and culture are no longer unquestioned.

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Episode 151 - Truth Telling: Revelations & Realities show art Episode 151 - Truth Telling: Revelations & Realities

This Jungian Life

Subjective truths yield multiple realities—political and religious truths famously differ. Objective truths rely on independent realities—two plus two must ever be four, not five. Jung’s four functions of consciousness help us reconcile inner and outer realities. Sensation causes physiological reactions to untruths in ourselves and in others; our bodies are wired for congruence.

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Episode 150 - Facing Your Feelings: Avoidance or Encounter? show art Episode 150 - Facing Your Feelings: Avoidance or Encounter?

This Jungian Life

While we welcome “good” feelings, we often try to banish “bad” ones like sadness, fear, vulnerability and shame. We may deny them by trying to “think positive.” We may attribute them to political wrongs or even the barking dog next door. If emotions have nowhere else to go, they become symptoms, complexes, and even physical illnesses. Avoiding negative emotions simply causes them to go underground and express themselves in disguise.

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Episode 149 - Self-Loathing: What’s Gnawing on Your Bones? show art Episode 149 - Self-Loathing: What’s Gnawing on Your Bones?

This Jungian Life

The judgmental inner voice has volume, speed, pitch and range. It may appear as a perfectionistic critic, demanding taskmaster, or abusive bully. It also seeps in through the collective, with criteria for beauty, status, and wealth that are unrealistic and artificial. At its worst, this punitive, shaming complex incites self-destructive behavior, and has long been imaged by witches, warlocks, ogres and fiends.

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Episode 148 - MYTH AS MEDICINE: An Interview with Kwame Scruggs, PhD show art Episode 148 - MYTH AS MEDICINE: An Interview with Kwame Scruggs, PhD

This Jungian Life

Kwame Scruggs inspires men through mythology, drumming and connection to community and culture. As a young man Kwame discovered his inner fire through African-based initiatory rites. He asked himself “What is it I really want to do? Not what could I do. What did I want to do?”

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Episode 147 - The Archetype of the Good King show art Episode 147 - The Archetype of the Good King

This Jungian Life

The king is figures prominently in myth, religion, and fairy tale. This compelling archetypal image has roots in our earliest human beginnings, when the king embodied his tribe’s earthly vitality and supra-human connection to spirit. Today, the king symbolizes universal psychic functions; each of us has an internal ruler. Like Solomon, the king presides over standards of ordering and lawgiving that undergird processes of discernment and decision.

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Episode 146 - INFLATION: The Challenge of Archetypal Possession show art Episode 146 - INFLATION: The Challenge of Archetypal Possession

This Jungian Life

Inflation applies to balloons, economics--and psychology. Jung defined it as being seized by archetypal energy resulting in “a puffed up attitude, loss of free will, delusion, and enthusiasm for good and evil alike.” Inflation is more than a “swelled head” because the influx of unconscious contents leads to identification with god-like powers.

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Episode 145 - Willpower: Choice, Energy & the Power to Achieve show art Episode 145 - Willpower: Choice, Energy & the Power to Achieve

This Jungian Life

The ability to choose and exercise will is a defining characteristic of humans. Only humans have enough energy available to consciousness to escape the rule of instinct. Jung says, “the realm of will cannot coerce instinct nor has it power over spirit,” so ego shall not dictate to psyche but find alignment with instinct and spirit, values and volition, before springing into pursuit of a goal.

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Episode 144 - Fierce Female Initiations: Claiming Authority & Selfhood Through Trials show art Episode 144 - Fierce Female Initiations: Claiming Authority & Selfhood Through Trials

This Jungian Life

Myths and fairy tales depict women’s initiation into authority and adulthood. Hades abducted Kore (maiden) into the underworld; Snow White choked on a poisoned apple and lay in stasis; Aphrodite punished forsaken Psyche with arduous tasks. As all were blossoming into the fullness of their beauty and fertility, all were also in thrall to innocence complexes that blinded them to realities of envy, aggression, and power, imaged as rapist, step-mother, and mother-in-law.

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Episode 143 - Scrooge on the Couch: How the Numinous Transforms show art Episode 143 - Scrooge on the Couch: How the Numinous Transforms

This Jungian Life

Charles Dickens’ novella, A Christmas Carol, vividly portrays the journey to healing and transcendence. It was written in a fever, released on December 19, 1843, and sold out before Christmas. Ebenezer Scrooge’s visitations by the spirits of Christmas Past, Present and Yet to Come are vivid depictions of the path from trauma to transformation. As in psychotherapy, Scrooge revisits his past; by reclaiming the feelings he exiled as a child, Scrooge discovers compassion and connection.

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More Episodes

The personal shadow is created as a normal part of development, as we learn what behaviors, values and feelings are not acceptable in our family, school, or religious tradition. In order to be accepted by needed significant others, parts of ourselves have to be split off from consciousness and are therefore relegated to the unconscious as shadow. A major part of becoming more whole is discovering these exiled parts of ourselves and integrating the feelings they carry. Deb, Lisa and Joseph discuss some of the ways that shadow can be confronted and given a place at the table of consciousness.

 

The Dream:

I’m in my Dad’s wood shop, in the basement of the home where I grew up. I need to unscrew a panel on a metal box, and I’m finding the right screwdriver. The first one I pick up is too small, Mom hands me a better-sized one, a Phillips head with four fins. Somehow it is a very large size, and I notice the fins on the head are rusty. I sand away some of the rust on one of the fins, but when I come to the second, it is covered in masking tape. Instead of peeling off the tape, I try to sand away the masking tape, but the sandpaper continues to sand into the screwdriver fin itself, which is somehow made of corrugated cardboard. I am puzzled. I feel a pit in my stomach, like I’ve made a mistake. I find that only the first of the four fins is made of metal, the rest are cardboard. I “undo” (like you would on a computer) to get back to where I was after sanding the metal fin. The cardboard fins are intact again and I’m relieved. I then unscrew and open the panel of the box.