Happiness Academy Online

A Blog about Psychology (Jungian), Spirituality and Happiness, By Roberto Lima Netto.

Jung: “I don’t believe in God; I know.”

Jung, questioned about his belief in God, answered: “I don’t believe; I know.”

I had a very interesting conversation with my friend John. We were discussing the enigmatic answer Jung gave in the BBC program “Face to Face”. How to interpret it?

John told me: “Jung had a father and many uncles that were ministers, but he was never able to accept his family’s dogmatic religion. He would see his father suffering, searching for faith at any cost, with no success, as faith is a gift of God.

“You can’t purchase faith in the supermarket.” I mentioned.

The fact is that Jung, just like any child, had visions. However, contrary to others who let the visions fade away, Jung continued to pay attention to them during his adult life.

“That is not so uncommon,” Said John, “the Bible accounts many visions prophets had. However, society in our time, with its aggravated materialism, doesn’t accept that things can happen. They think visions are affairs of crazy people.”

“Was that Jung’s feared to be considered a mad man?”

“When a child, yes. Without understanding what was happening to him at the time, Jung was afraid of searching for answers with his father, or with anyone else, and he kept his visions to himself. He tells his drama in his book: Memories, Dreams, Reflections, where he mentions his conviction of having two people living inside his head. One lived in the material world, what most considered to be the only real world. The other had visions and dreams. Later in life, Jung recognized these visions and dreams as messages of the unconscious, and that they should be valued so that human beings could have a vigorous mental health.”

A bird landed on the branch of a tree in front of the window. It started singing. John continued: “Jung refused to believe in the dogmatic Judeo-Christian religion that had made his father suffer so much. He felt that the human being should search for a direct contact with the divine. This contact could occur through sudden experiences – Saint Paul on the road to Damascus, Moses and the burning bush, – or in a persistent and conscious work of paying attention to the messages of the unconscious – dreams and visions – in a slow growth process of gaining consciousness, culminating in an advanced stage called individuation.”

I agreed: “According to Jung, the objective of human life is to follow a journey of individuation, His psychology, which he called Analytical Psychology – to distinguish it from Freudian Psychoanalysis – has the objective to guide a person in their process of individuation.”

John continued: “The first step to this process is to realize that the material is not the only real world. On the contrary, the search of greater consciousness being the objective of human life, It is very important to pay attention to the interior world. It is through it that we talk to God.”

Jung always tried to avoid a confrontation with the established religions. His objective was to influence the Catholic Church to open up to the unconscious. He used to say he was not a theologian, but simply an empirical psychologist trying to interpret the images that were produced in his psyche and of his patients and friends. He thought that Christianity could avoid the wear that its’ powerful images suffered through two thousand years, and become a more attractive path, free from some dogmas.”

John said: “It is understandable that Christianity, in its first centuries, when still trying to stand as a religion of the masses, defined dogmas and pursued who rebelled against them. The Gnostics, who preached the direct contact with God, had to be fought. The Church needed the monopoly over dialogue with God to stand on its own two feet.” It is worth remembering that one of the points that put Jung in confrontation with the Roman Church was the concept of good. The Idea that all good is in God, and all evil in men/women wasn’t accepted by Jung. Yahweh from the Old Testament wasn’t only good, but complete. And so, he was feared. We can’t forget the passages in the Bible where he ordered the killings of enemies, men, women and children. With the advent of Christ, the exclusively good God, the evil was projected on the human being. Satan appears four times in the Old Testament and sixty-six times in the New. In duality, characteristic of our earthly life, there cannot be good without evil.

“We started our conversation with the answer that Jung gave in his interview with BBC,” I said. “We drifted to other matter and didn’t get to it.”

John said: “In my opinion, Jung meant that, having lived intensely with the images that he received from his unconscious, having learned from them, having travelled the journey of individuation, he didn’t need simply believe in God; he knew God.”

I am Roberto Lima Netto, and I believe that our objective in life is to be happy and that Spirituality and Jungian psychology, my main areas of interest, can help us in this search for happiness. I am a writer. Some of my books are “The Little Prince for Grown-ups“, “The Jungian Bible“, “The Amazon Shaman” and “In Search of Happiness“. I invite you to visit my blog and leave your comments at:  www.HappinessAcademyOnline.org.

Versão portuguêsa

Jung, perguntado se acreditava em Deus, respondeu: “Não acredito; eu conheço.”

Tive uma conversa muito interessante com o meu amigo John, discutindo a resposta enigmática que Jung deu no programa “Face to Face” da BBC.

John me disse: “Jung tinha um pai e muitos tios que eram ministros, mas ele nunca foi capaz de aceitar a religião dogmática de sua família. Ele via o sofrimento de seu pai, em busca da fé que perdera sem sucesso.

 

” A fé é um dom de Deus.Você não pode comprar no supermercado,” eu disse.

“Freudianos acusavam Jung de ser místico. Ele era?”

“Jung se dizia um psicólogo empírico. Mas, como ele considerava a religião um grande problema para muitas pessoas, teve que estudar e entende do assunto, para melhor ajudar aos seus clientes. Mas ele sempre abordou o tema psicologicamente. Sempre disse que não era um místico. ”

“O fato é que Jung, como qualquer criança, teve visões. No entanto, ao contrário de outros que deixam as visões no esquecimento, Jung continuou a prestar atenção a elas durante sua vida adulta.”

“Isso não é tão incomum”, disse João, “a Bíblia apresenta muitas visões de profetas. No entanto, a sociedade do nosso tempo, com seu materialismo acerbado, não aceita que estas coisas possam acontecer nos dias de hoje. Eles acham que as visões são coisas de loucos.”

“Jung temia ser considerado louco?”

“Quando uma criança, sim. Sem entender o que estava acontecendo com ele na época, Jung tinha medo de procurar respostas com seu pai ou com qualquer outra pessoa, e guardou suas visões para si mesmo. Ele conta seu drama em seu livro: “Memórias, Sonhos, Reflexões“, onde menciona sua convicção de ter duas pessoas vivendo dentro de sua cabeça. Uma vivia no mundo material, o que as pessoas consideravam o único mundo real, a outra tinha visões e sonhos. Mais tarde, Jung reconheceu que essas visões e sonhos eram mensagens do inconsciente, e que todos devemos valorizá-las para que possamos ter uma boa saúde mental. ”

Um pássaro pousou no galho de uma árvore em frente à janela e começou a cantar. João continuou: “Jung se recusou a acreditar na dogmática religião judaico-cristã, que tinha feito seu pai sofrer tanto. Ele sentiu que o ser humano deveria procurar um contato direto com o divino. Este contato pode ocorrer através de experiências súbitas – São Paulo no caminho de Damasco, Moisés e a sarça ardente, – ou em um trabalho persistente e consciente de prestar atenção às mensagens do inconsciente – sonhos e visões – em um processo de crescimento lento para ganhar mais consciência, culminando em um estágio avançado de individuação. ”

Eu concordei: “De acordo com Jung, o objetivo da vida humana é seguir um caminho de individuação, sua psicologia, que ele chamou de Psicologia Analítica para distingui-la de Psicanálise Freudiana, tem o objetivo de orientar a pessoa no processo de individuação. ”

João continuou: “O primeiro passo nesse processo é perceber que o mundo material não é o único mundo real. Pelo contrário, a busca de uma maior consciência deve ser o objetivo da vida humana, e, para isso, é muito importante prestar atenção ao mundo interior. É através dele que falamos com Deus.”

“Jung sempre tentou evitar um confronto com as religiões estabelecidas. Seu objetivo era influenciar a Igreja Católica a se abrir para o inconsciente. Ele costumava dizer que não era um teólogo, mas simplesmente um psicólogo empírico tentando interpretar as imagens que eram produzidas em sua psique e na de seus pacientes e amigos. Ele pensou que o cristianismo poderia evitar o desgaste que suas imagens poderosas vem sofrendo com dois mil anos, e tornar-se um caminho mais atraente, livre de alguns dogmas.”

João disse: “É compreensível que o cristianismo nos primeiros séculos, quando ainda tentava se transformar em uma religião de massas, necessitasse de dogmas definidos. Aliás, quando se tornou a religião oficial do império, a Igreja passou de perseguida a perseguidora. Os gnósticos, que pregavam o contato direto com Deus, foram duramente de ser combatido. A Igreja queria o monopólio do diálogo com Deus.”

“A Igreja Romana intensificou sua rejeição a Jung depois que ele publicou seu livro Resposta a Jó,” eu disse.

“Claro! Vale lembrar que outro ponto que colocou Jung em confronto com a Igreja Romana foi o conceito de bom. A ideia de que todo o bem está em Deus e todo o mal nos sers humanos não era aceito por Jung. Javé, o Deus do Antigo Testamento, não foi apenas bom, mas completo. Nós não podemos esquecer as passagens na Bíblia em que ele ordenou o assassinato dos inimigos dos judeus – homens, mulheres e crianças. Com o advento de Cristo, o exclusivamente bom, o mal foi projetado sobre os seres humanos. Satanás aparece quatro vezes no Antigo Testamento e sessenta e seis vezes no Novo. Na dualidade, característica de nossa vida terrena, não pode haver o bem sem mal, do mesmo modo que não pode haver o claro sem escuro, o quente sem frio”.

“Nós começamos a nossa conversa com a resposta que Jung deu, em sua entrevista com a BBC,” eu disse. “Mas derivamos para outro assunto. Podemos voltar?”

João disse: “Na minha opinião, Jung queria dizer que, tendo vivido intensamente com as imagens que recebeu de seu inconsciente, tendo aprendido com eles, tendo vivido sua jornada de individuação, ele não precisava simplesmente acreditar em Deus, ele conhecia Deus.”

I was involved in the business world, as an executive of large companies and university professor since recently. I was the president CSN, the largest steel-mill of Latin America and was responsible for its turn-around. My first encounter with the teachings of the Swiss psychologist C. G. Jung, one of the greatest geniuses of the 20th Century, was during my midlife crisis. Reading "Man and his Symbols" at that time, inspired me to go into Jungian analysis and to begin devouring the writings of Jung and his disciples. Since then, I've been studying psychology, especially Jungian psychology and, after reaching my seventies, I decided to become a full time writer, specializing on books on Jungian psychology and psychological thrillers. Every masterpiece of literature can be absorbed through multiple interpretations, and yield powerful insights for our daily lives. My first Jungian book, “The Little Prince for Grown-ups“, in its fourth edition in Brazil, was based on the famous book of Saint-Exupéry. The second, - “The Jungian Bible” - interprets some stories of the Old Testament and world myths. As I get older and, with a bit of luck, wiser, I want to pass on to the younger generations the lessons life has taught me. Jesus Christ taught that it was easier to sell ideas with stories. Following the Master, I published in English "The Amazon Shaman" and "In Search of Happiness", two psychological thrillers around the theme of happiness.

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