The Perils of the Unlived Life

The experience of the unlived life correlates to what Joseph Campbell calls “the refusal of the call.” Life calls us to participate in its process of continuous becoming, the perpetual cycle of death and rebirth, and if we shy away from this calling we find ourselves, in Campbell’s words, “walled in boredom, hard work, or ‘culture.’” … [click on title to read and view more]

Depression and the Call to Adventure

By Jason E. Smith
The journey of the hero begins with a call. Something in the life of the individual feels in need of a change.

It may be a job, a relationship, or a system of belief — some aspect of life that once felt meaningful, but no longer seems to provide sustenance for living.

For example, you may find that one day you look up from your desk at work, see all the activity taking place around you, and ask yourself that most dangerous of questions: Why?

“Why am I doing this? What’s it all for? Is this all my life is about?”

When you hear yourself asking these questions, you are hearing the call. … [click on title to read and view more]

Carl Jung on living an authentic life

It could be argued that at the heart of Jungian therapy is the aim of experiencing and living an authentic life.

That is not the language that Carl Jung used, but it does express a central idea of his psychology, which he called ‘individuation.’ Put very simply, individuation is the process by which individuals become more fully themselves.

Individuation involves differentiating oneself from conformity with collective values, which does not necessarily mean rejecting those values. Rather, it means the ability to choose the values by which one will live instead of merely living out social norms in an unreflective and unconscious way.

In other words, the individuation process is a deepening and maturing of one’s individuality and sense of authenticity. … [click on title to read and view more]

Carl Jung’s Words of Advice for the Depressed

By Jason E. Smith — From Jung’s point of view there is a hidden intention in depression. It “forces us downwards.” This is not, as it might sound, a punishment for arrogance, but rather a consequence of having become cut off from the human, instinctual part of ourselves. … [click on title to read and view more]