Archive for April, 2012

Finding the Treasure

“In myths the hero is the one who conquers the dragon, not the one who is devoured by it. And yet both have to deal with the same dragon. Also, he is no hero who never met the dragon, or who, if he once saw it, declared afterwards that he saw nothing. Equally, only one who has risked the fight with the dragon and is not overcome by it wins the hoard, the “treasure hard to attain.” He alone has a genuine claim to self-confidence, for he has faced the dark ground of his self and thereby has gained himself. . . . He has acquired the right to believe that he will be able to overcome all future threats by the same means.”—Carl Jung

“In myth the treasure is always guarded by a dragon or monster bigger and more powerful than the Goddess or any trickster. The dragon or serpent is very often the outer symbolic form for the Father figure from which the hero was separated at birth or during childhood. Without his spiritual experience, which is now at a premium, as is his fearlessness and wisdom, he would not be ready for the awesome moment when he comes face to face with his real spiritual self, his inner god. More often than not the dragon or serpent which guards the treasure is a fire-breathing dragon. As we have already seen fire in myth is symbolic of spirit and self-consciousness, and the serpent or dragon isn’t an evil tempter but is a symbol of Eternity and Wisdom. All these symbols together create the well known motif of the fire-breathing dragon – Spirit and self-consciousness co-existing with Eternal Wisdom. This is a composite symbol and so some myths may not use all the motifs contained within the fire-breathing dragon symbol, but use only certain aspects.”Harry Young

“ . . . before we come to our own hearts we are destined to take endless journeys climbing mountains, swimming oceans
and trying to reach the stars. In the process, we inevitably will become lost, stuck or trapped. We take hopelessly wrong turns, try to fly too close to the sun or drown in our own sea of projections. Then somehow, mysteriously our individual lives through the slender threads of fate return us to the source from which we come and find what turns out to be buried treasure in our own back yards, the truth that resides in our own hearts, the golden world. This is the stuff of life. The journey Dr. Jung called the process of individuation.”—Robert A. Johnson, from the foreword to Michael DeMaria‘s book, Ever Flowing On

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Quote of the Day

Prospective Immigrants Please Note

Either you will
go through this door
or you will not go through.

If you go through
there is always the risk
of remembering your name.

Things look at you doubly
and you must look back
and let them happen.

If you do not go through
it is possible
to live worthily

to maintain your attitudes
to hold your position
to die bravely

but much will blind you,
much will evade you,
at what cost who knows?

The door itself makes no promises.
It is only a door.

—Adrienne Rich


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The NWA Friends of Jung meets the 1st and 3rd Tuesdays of the month in the library at St. Paul's Episcopal Church in Fayetteville, Arkansas.

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