Happiness Academy Online

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

Saving civilization

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A spiritual life can help saving civilization.

Saving Civilization

Temple of Apollo at Delphi

George Bernard Shaw said that civilizations invariably collapse when men power outrun religion. That is what is happening now. The decline of religions all over the world is the recipe for catastrophe. Even in India, a country essentially religions, we hear of killings among Muslins and Buddhist. Without religion, human beings get dehumanized, and ethics is the loser. How can we help saving civilization?

There is no question that the power of religion has been vanishing in the Western World since the Renaissance. The development of science and the strengthening of rationalism raised questions about several churche statements.

We cannot deny the weakening of the Christian Churches. The rational attitude prevailing in the Western Civilization makes it difficult to accept as facts some of the dogmas of Christianity, like virginal conception, for instance.

Christianity preaches that Jesus is the only son of God, but He said in the Gospel of Thomas (saying # 3), “When you come to know yourself, then you will be known, and you will realize that you are the children of the living Father.” So, Jesus is not the ONLY son of God, but a great prophet and a unique individual.

I accept the dogmas of Christianity, not as facts, but as metaphors, as symbolic truths.

Power corrupts and the powers held by the Christian Churches thru many centuries have corrupted the institution, and, despite the efforts of Pope Francis, it is difficult to believe that the Catholic Church will see a fundamental change.

Happy are the ones that have faith, a diminishing group. But faith is not sold in supermarkets, and the ones that cannot truly accept the dogmas of the Christian religion are at a disadvantage. And what?

Many believe that the best way to improve the world is to fight for a political system, for ecology, for liberty, for eradication of poverty. But an individual has little influence on these issues.

Jung affirmed that the best way to help humanity was to work on oneself to achieve a higher level of conscience. This coincides with the old saying in the entrance of Apollo’s sanctuary in Delphos – Know Thyself.”

Jung claimed that the gains of each individual are stored in the collective unconscious for use of all human beings. Jung called this work of gaining higher conscience, the journey of individuation. This journey of individuation is a spiritual journey, and you don’t need to belong to a church to embark into it. Jung proposes that we pay attention to our dreams and work on them using the method of Active Imagination.

Let me repeat the question: How can we help saving civilization? “Know Thyself”. Get more conscious.  If you improve yourself, you improve the world.

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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