The following is an enlarged edition of the biography of Carl Jung from our book The New Age Tower of Babel, available from Way of Life Literature.
Carl Gustav Jung (1875-1961), the founder of analytical psychology, has been influential, not only in society at large, but also in the New Age movement and within almost all aspects of Christianity. Jung has influenced both modernists and evangelicals. His writings are influential within the contemplative movement. He has been promoted by Paul Tillich, Morton Kelsey, John Sanford, Thomas Moore, Joseph Campbell, John Spong, Richard Foster, Agnes Sanford, and Gary Thomas, to name a few. Jung’s psychological typing provides the underpinning for the Personality Profiling part of Rick Warren’s SHAPE program, which is used by countless churches and churches and institutions.
Jung (pronounced Young) has been called “the psychologist of the 21st century” (Merill Berger, The Wisdom of the Dreams, front cover).
Ed Hird says, “One could say without overstatement that Carl Jung is the Father of Neo-Gnosticism and the New Age Movement” (Ed Hird, “Carl Jung, Neo-Gnosticism, and the Meyers-Briggs Temperament Indicator (MBTI),” March 18, 1998; reprinted in Who’s Driving the Purpose Driven Church by James Sundquist, Appendix C).
Jeffrey Satinover says:
“Jung’s direct and indirect impact on mainstream Christianity--and thus on Western culture--has been incalculable. It is no exaggeration to say that the theological positions of most mainstream denominations in their approach to pastoral care, as well as in their doctrines and liturgy--have become more or less identical with Jung’s psychological/symbolic theology” (Homosexuality and the Politics of Truth, p. 240, quoted from Ed Hird).
Jung collaborated with Sigmund Freud from 1907 to 1912, but after a falling out, they went their separate ways.
In true New Age fashion, Jung explored Hinduism, Buddhism, Taoism, I Ching, astrology, Spiritualism, Gnosticism, alchemy, dream interpretation, mandala symbolism, Theosophy, Greek Mythology, and more. He spent time in India studying eastern religion and folk lore. He wrote the first introduction to Zen Buddhism. He amassed one of the largest collections of spiritualistic writings found on the European continent (Jeffrey Santinover, The Empty Self, p. 28). Jung used the divination methods of I Ching in the 1920s and 1930s and the training program of the Jung Institute of Zurich originally included this practice (Richard Noll, The Jung Cult: Origins of a Charismatic Movement, 1994, p. 333, quoted from Ed Hird). In a letter to Freud, Jung said, “I made horoscopic calculations in order to find a clue to the core of psychological truth. ... I dare say that we shall one day discover in astrology a good deal of knowledge which has been intuitively projected into the heavens” (Richard Webster, Why Freud Was Wrong, 1995, p. 385). Beginning in 1911 Jung quoted G.R.S. Mead, a practicing Theosophist, “regularly in his works through his entire life” (Richard Noll, The Jung Cult, p. 69).
Jung communicated with spirits all his life. He “experienced precognition, clairvoyance, psychokinesis, and haunting” (Harper’s Encyclopedia of Mystical and Paranormal Experience). His mother and maternal grandmother were “ghost seers.” His mother spent much of her time in her separate bedroom, “enthralled by the spirits that she said visited her at night” (“Carl Jung,” Wikipedia). Her family was heavily involved in séances. For many years, Jung attended séances with his mother and two female cousins (John Kerr, A Most Dangerous Method: The Story of Jung, Freud, and Sabina Spielrein, 1993, pp. 50, 54, quoted from Ed Hird). His grandmother, Augusta Preiswerk, “fell into a three-day trance at age twenty, during which she communicated with spirits of the dead and gave prophecies” (Harper’s Encyclopedia of Mystical and Paranormal Experience).
In his childhood, Jung had a dream in which Christ appeared in a vile form that we will not describe. Instead of judging this as blasphemous, he accepted it as divine revelation and allowed it to draw him from the biblical Christ. He said,
“Lord Jesus never became quite real for me, never quite acceptable, never quite lovable, for again and again I would think of his underground counterpart, a frightful revelation which had been accorded me without my seeking it” (Memories, Dreams, Reflections, Vintage Books, 1989, p. 13).
Even as a boy, he was drawn to Hindu gods because he “had an obscure feeling of their affinity with my ‘original revelation’” (p. 17).
In his childhood, Jung also felt that he had two personalities, one was himself the schoolboy and the other was a man from the 18th century. This other personality, named Philemon, had a life of its own and talked with Jung. In his autobiography Jung said, “Philemon represented a force which was not myself. In my fantasies I held conversations with him, and he said things which I had not consciously thought. ... At times he seemed to me quite real, as if he were a living personality. I went walking up and down the garden with him, and to me he was what the Indians call a guru” (Memories, Dreams, Reflections, p. 183). Obviously, this was a familiar spirit.
Jung was confused about who or what was speaking to him. He said, “Who was it speaking in me? Whose mind had devised them? What kind of superior intelligence was at work?” (p. 14). Amazingly, he acknowledged that these experiences were “an initiation into the realm of darkness” (p. 15), but he did not renounce them.
Jung also talked to a female spirit within him that he called “anima.” “I was greatly intrigued by the fact that a woman should interfere with me from within. My conclusion was that she must be the ‘soul,’ in the primitive sense ... I called her the ‘anima.’ ... I felt a little awed by her. It was like the feeling of an invisible presence in the room. ... What the anima said seemed to me full of a deep cunning. ... For decades I always turned to the anima when I felt that my emotional behavior was disturbed, and that something had been constellated in the unconscious. I would then ask the anima: ‘Now what are you up to? What do you see? I should like to know.’ After some resistance she regularly produced an image” (Memories, Dreams, Reflections, pp. 186-187).
At about age 40, Jung wrote Septem Sermones (The Seven Sermons to the Dead) by dictation from demons. He describes this in his autobiography in the following amazing words.
“It became with a restlessness, but I did not know what it meant or what ‘they’ wanted of me. There was an ominous atmosphere all around me. I had the strange feeling that the air was filled with ghostly entities. Then it was as if my house began to be haunted. My eldest daughter saw a white figure passing through the room. ... The whole house was filled as if there were a crowd present, crammed full of spirits. ... They were packed deep right up to the door, and the air was so thick it was scarcely possible to breathe. As for myself, I was all a-quiver with the question: ‘For God’s sake, what in the world is this?’ Then they cried out in chorus, ‘We have come back from Jerusalem where we found not what we sought.’ That is the beginning of the Septem Sermones. Then it began to flow out of me, and in the course of three evenings the thing was written. As soon as I took up the pen, the whole ghostly assemblage evaporated. The room quieted and the atmosphere cleared. The haunting was over” (Memories, Dreams, Reflections, pp. 190, 191).
Jung had violent episodes when a rage would come over him. He also had the gift of divination. He says, “I the course of my life it has often happened to me that I suddenly knew something which I really could not know at all” (p. 51). He told of one situation at a wedding meal when he told what he thought was a made up story but it turned out to be the perfect life experience of a man who was sitting at the table.
When Jung had a breakdown following his separation from Sigmund Freud and was nearly suicidal, he renewed communication with Philemon, who became his guide. Jung said, “Philemon represented a force which was not myself. ... It was he who taught me psychic objectivity” (James Sundquist, A Review of the Purpose Driven Life). Philemon appeared to Jung variously as “an old man with the horns of a bull ... and the wings of a fisher” and as Elijah and as Salome. The latter addressed Jung as Christ (C.G. Jung: Analytical Psychology: Notes of the Seminar Given in 1925, Princeton University Press, 1989, pp. 86, 98).
After Jung’s split from Freud, he suffered a six-year-long breakdown “during which he had psychotic fantasies” and experienced “numerous paranormal phenomena” (Harper’s Encyclopedia).
Jung’s father was a pastor. In fact, there were eight pastors in Jung’s family tree. In spite of this, Jung rejected faith and the doctrine of the grace of Christ.
“At that time, too, there arose in me profound doubts about everything my father said. When I heard him preaching about grace, I always thought of my own experience [his own “revelations]. ... I had many discussions with my father ... But our discussions invariably came to an unsatisfactory end. They irritated him, and saddened him. ‘Oh nonsense,’ he was in the habit of saying, ‘you always want to think. One ought not to think, but believe.’ I would think, ‘No, one must experience and know.’ ... Church gradually became a place of torment to me. ... I grew more and more skeptical, and my father’s sermons and those of other parsons became acutely embarrassing to me. ... My doubts and uneasiness increased whenever I heard my father in his emotional sermons speak of the ‘good’ God, praising god’s love for man and exhorting man to love God in return. ... The arch sin of faith, it seemed to me, was that it forestalled experience” (Memories, Dreams, Reflections, pp. 42, 43, 44, 45, 94).
Jung considered all religions to be myths, but he felt they were useful. He believed that the secret of life is found “at the mystical heart of all religions” and that it consists of a “journey of transformation” to find the true self and bring it into harmony with the Divine.
Jung said that Jesus, Mani, Buddha, and Lao-Tse are all “pillars of the spirit” and that he “could give none preference over the other” (John Dourley, C.G. Jung and Paul Tillich, p. 65).
Jung came to believe in pantheism. “Nothing could persuade me that ‘in the image of God’ applied only to man. In fact it seemed to me that the high mountains, the rivers, lakes, trees, flowers, and animals far better exemplified the essence of God than men...” (Memories, Dreams, Reflections, p. 45). He believed that “nothing separated man from God” (p. 45). Jung, in fact, became an idolater. He carried a little stone and secretly adored it. He says, “What I dimly felt to be my kinship with stone was the divine nature in both, in the dead and the living matter” (p. 68).
To Jung, God was unknowable. “My ‘religion’ recognized no human relationship to God, for how could anyone relate to something so little known as God” (p. 57).
Jung believed in the “Collective Unconscious,” which is supposedly the universal consciousness of mankind that lies at a subconscious level. It apparently consists of the sum total of man’s thinking since he evolved from animals, and through psychiatry and mystical religion, man can delve into this realm. Jung defined the collective consciousness as “the sediment of all the experience of the universe of all time, and is also the image of the universe that has been in process of formation from untold ages” (Collected Papers on Analytical Psychology, “The Psychology of Unconscious Process,” p. 432).
This, of course, is one of the foundational doctrines of the New Age and doubtless came from Jung’s study of eastern religion and various forms of occultic mysticism such as Theosophy.
The “collective unconscious” is pure myth. Richard Webster wisely observes that “the Unconscious is not simply an occult entity for whose real existence there is no palpable evidence. It is an illusion produced by language--a kind of intellectual hallucination” (Richard Webster, Why Freud Was Wrong, p. 250, quoted from Ed Hird).
Jung was heavily involved in trying to understand “the psyche” through dream analysis. It is a part of “depth psychology” which seeks to understand the hidden or deeper parts of human experience. He believed that dreams reflect both the personal and the “collective” unconscious and that they contain revelations as well as fantasies.
Jung held to the blasphemous gnostic belief that good and evil can be reconciled.
“For Jung, good and evil evolved into two equal, balanced, cosmic principles that belong together in one overarching synthesis. This relativization of good and evil by their reconciliation is the heart of the ancient doctrines of gnosticism, which also located spirituality, hence morality, within man himself. Hence ‘the union of opposites’” (Satinover, Homosexuality and the Politics of Truth, p. 240).
Jung held to the New Age-emerging church principle that “both paths are right” (Dourley, C. G. Jung and Paul Tillich, p. 279). The emerging church calls this “orthoparadoxy.”
Jung believed in reincarnation and “drew many of his beliefs from the Tibetan Book of the Dead” (Harper’s Encyclopedia of Mysticism).
Jung believed in the power of visualization. He said that holding the mental images of Jesus and Mary has power for overcoming negativity and producing good (Bob Guste, Mary at My Side, p. 58).
Jung believed we are entering the Age of Aquarius. In a 1940 letter to Godwin Baynes he said: “1940 is the year when we approach the meridian of the first star in Aquarius. It is the premonitory earthquake of the New Age” (Merill Berger and Stephen Segaller, The Wisdom of the Dreams, p. 162, quoted from Ed Hird). Jung “feared greatly for the future of humankind, and said the only salvation lay in becoming more conscious” (Harper’s). This is a reference to attaining a higher state of consciousness through psychology and mysticism.
Later in life, Jung became interested in UFOs and wrote a book on the subject entitled Flying Saucers: A Modern Myth of Things Seen in the Skies.
Jung was married to the same woman for 52 years, but he had illicit relationships with other women.
His last words were, “Let’s have a really good red wine tonight” (http://www.kirjasto.sci.fi/cjung.htm).
The loudest warning against psychiatry we have ever read came from Carl Jung’s own pen. He said, “All of my works, all my creative activity, has come from those initial fantasies and dreams which began in 1912” (Memories, Dreams, Reflections, p. 192). Thus, by his own testimony, Jung’s psychiatry evolved directly from demonic activity.
[The previous is excerpted from our book The New Age Tower of Babel, available from Way of Life Literature.]
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