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    While looking at Jung's philosophies I came across an old and interesting article (http://www.philosophypress.co.uk/?p=602). What do you agree/disagree with? Where do you see problems in reasoning of the article and Jungian thought? It would be greatly preferred that you read it all before debating, but here are some things I've highlighted:



    Jung was also genuinely excited by the problems posed by medieval Scholastic thought. For him, the apparently tedious debates about nominalism and realism (whether concepts exist only in language or in “reality”), reflected in the controversy over transubstantiation, revealed a historical fact – the permanence of two different “types”. As the German poet, Heinrich Heine, put it: “Plato and Aristotle! These are not merely two systems – they are also types of two distinct human natures.” And these two different human natures tend to think in two entirely separate ways – two different psychologies. Most our problems, Jung believed, don’t come from our disagreement about the solutions to problems. They come from the fact that we don’t actually see a problem in the same way and so can’t even agree about what the problem is.


    Jung takes this idea of categories (though not the categories themselves) and applies it to human attitudes toward what goes on in our lives. If we analyse human behaviour, he suggested, we find certain emotional structures keep occurring. He called these “archetypes”. We might keep finding ourselves, for instance, in situations that remind us of our earlier relationship to our mother or to our father (the maternal or paternal archetype). Or we relate to members of the opposite sex in a way that reflects, not the reality of the individuals in front of us, but the secret wishes and desires we project onto them (in the case of men, the “anima” or – for women – the “animus”). In some situations, having recourse to the playful, spontaneous attitude of the child can be an appropriate, even helpful response (this is, using the Latin word, activating the puer archetype). Those moments when we become aware of the dark, unwelcome aspects of ourselves we tend to hide away, and which are nevertheless part of what (and who) we are, Jung termed the encounter with the “shadow”. One of the most intriguing of these archetypes is called the “trickster”: sometimes charming, sometimes a bit difficult to handle (“tricky”, in fact), it can be a source of dynamic, creative thought.


    But Jung’s essentially Kantian model makes it clear he is talking about the world as we see it and as we live in it – in Kant’s terms, the world “for us” – and precisely not, as Kant thought impossible, the world “in itself”.


    He asks, how do we go about understanding a literary text, such as Goethe’s Faust, or admiring a work of architecture, such as Cologne cathedral? We can reduce a book to its historical sources, and we can understand a Gothic cathedral in terms of its mineral composition, as a pile of stones, even. But if we do that, we also lose sight of their meaning. What we need, he says, is an understanding that is “synthetic-constructive”, not “analytical-reductive”. Such an understanding should – in a phrase used by Ludwig Feuerbach – stand in “accord with the understanding of other reasonable beings”, and in this sense be “objective”. But the real reason why such an understanding is “real and effective” (wirklich und wirkend) is because it “connects with life”.


    And it is how to develop a way of thinking that “connects with life” that lies at the heart of Jung’s philosophical project. One of the slogans he liked to repeat was “wirklich ist, was wirkt” – “whatever is real, works [i.e., has an effect]”. In other words, what is “real”, what is “objective”, is whatever makes an actual impact on our lives. Jung is trying to bridge – to heal, even – the disconnect, as he sees it, between Western philosophy and “real life” – our daily lives, the lives we actually lead in the (so-called) “real world”. What “really” matters, then, is what matters in life, because it makes a difference to our lives. Wirklich ist, was wirkt.



    On his account, the psyche is not simply a structure, it is something dynamic, something permanently becoming. (In his use of the energicy concept of libido, Jung believed he had found a “quantitative formula” for the “phenomenon of life”.) Moreover, he argues that we need to become aware of the “symbolic” dimension of life. Only the “symbolic” approach, Jung seeks to persuade us, can unite what, to other (non-vitalist) philosophical systems, are forever divided: body and mind/soul, the sensuous and the intellectual, the irrational and the rational. To paraphrase Nietzsche, we redeem the world when we see it – including ourselves – as a “symbolic phenomenon”.



    So what, in his aesthetic-vitalist philosophy, does Jung mean by the symbol and its “life-promoting significance”? In practical terms, Jung is trying to bring about in us a “symbolic attitude”, so that we may come to see, as Goethe did, our lives “symbolically”. For there is one view of things – a (superficially) “objective” view – which “places emphasis on pure actuality, and subordinates meaning to facts.” But opposed to this, Jung says, is another view of life – and, in a far richer sense, an “objective” one – that “endows all occurrences, whether great or small, with a meaning to which a deeper value is given than to pure actuality.” To see our lives as more than “pure actuality”, as possessing a “deeper value”, is what Jung means when he speaks (in a rather high-flown way) of “psychic transformation”.

    But it’s not as esoteric as it sounds. Jung bases his conception of the symbol on Friedrich Schiller’s: it is lebende Gestalt or “living form”, both a form that lives, and a life that is lived in (aesthetic) form. By changing the way we see ourselves, we also change the world. By endowing what happens to us in our lives with meaning; by understanding our lives, as we would a book or a cathedral, in aesthetic terms; we engage on a project that is at once psychological and philosophical.

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    Interesting. Jung did, I think touch on a good point when he says that we should look at what is symbolic in objects and not what their classification is, because it relates to us as people, and I agree that "what affects us, is reality". What I think is a bit too introverted, I think, is the idea we have to look at objects as represantations of our psyché - this is essentially the Schopenhauerien idea that the world is our repsresentation - except Schopenhauer never said everything relates to our own psyché but to the collective psyché that which we are all a part of as is reality which we perceive. Now, I know Jung coined the collective uncoscious and all, but what I mean is that he doesnt see it as a foundation of reality the way Schopenauer did - or lets just say he didnt have the balls to go as far as Schopenhauer; he wasnt a philosopher. What I mean is, I think that not everything in objects we perceive is a reflection of our psyché. Jung was an introvert, so naturally he thought this but I think this affirmation is essentailly false. We have alot to learn from the object and objective reality, and some of it does have objective qualities that escape our projections. However we cant ever really know that we know something we can know the truth but we cant know that we know the truth - thats Kant's problem of knowing the phenomena but not the noumena. My problem is similar - you cannot really know that you know the truth, since all methods of knowledge are based on epistemology and there varying methods of "knowing" the truth.

    ADDED: I guess what Im trying to say concerns mostly our relations with people. When you confront and deal with a person you're inevetably going to project some things from yourself onto them, but not everything we perceive about a person comes from yourself. That would be equivalent of saying people have no will of their own and exist in our minds only. I wish you good luck trying to make friends(and enemies!) that way. I think we can know about a person not only what we project into them, but also what they project outward; their qualities. If you blind yourself into thinking others' qualities are nothing but a projection of your own psyché then there is no knowing the other person.
    Last edited by Typhon; 11-01-2011 at 10:16 PM.

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    This is effectively what crazed intends to do. Via brilliant symbolism relevant to this day and age he desires to educate and heal the masses, but first it must work on itself...

    -->"whatever is real, works".
    She is wise
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    Because everything
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    "Yes, it will be done."


    Why I love LSEs:
    Quote Originally Posted by Abbie
    A couple years ago I was put in charge of decorating the college for Valentine's Day. I made some gorgeous, fancy decorations from construction paper, glue, scissors, and imagination. Then I covered a couple cabinets with them. But my favorite was the diagram of a human heart I put up. So romantic!

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    Quote Originally Posted by Jung
    To see our lives as more than “pure actuality”, as possessing a “deeper value”, is what Jung means when he speaks (in a rather high-flown way) of “psychic transformation”.

    By changing the way we see ourselves, we also change the world.
    Indeed. How we perceive ourselves has such vast consequences. As above so below, as within so without. Socionics itself is a great example (The change in people's behavior as a result of change in self-perception as represented by their self-typing is pretty amazing). A person who perceives themselves as unworthy and incapable acts according to their self-concept, and manifesting it by way of self-defeating behaviors and half-hearted efforts, perpetuating a cycle of self-fulfilling prophecy. The cycle is hard to break once put into motion, and to stop and replace this is a most difficult and challenging task, spanning years and possibly decades.

    Quote Originally Posted by Jung
    By endowing what happens to us in our lives with meaning; by understanding our lives, as we would a book or a cathedral, in aesthetic terms; we engage on a project that is at once psychological and philosophical.
    Performing an action that we perceive as without meaning wouldn't be performed for very long. Likewise, a person perceiving life as such ends up in existentialistic depression. To view ourselves as creators, architects, writers of our own script is refreshing, creative, and promotes action and life. A lifelong project that is both psychological and philosophical, as Jung puts it.

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    He was an idealistic philosopher, hence an intuitive type and psychology is very much a philosophy.

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    Quote Originally Posted by InkStrider View Post
    A person who perceives themselves as unworthy and incapable acts according to their self-concept, and manifesting it by way of self-defeating behaviors and half-hearted efforts, perpetuating a cycle of self-fulfilling prophecy. The cycle is hard to break once put into motion, and to stop and replace this is a most difficult and challenging task, spanning years and possibly decades.
    Honestly, I've never agreed with this idea. What does being unworthy and incapable mean here? If one truly believed they were unworthy and incapable of something, then they wouldn't go do those things they believe unworthy and incapable of. But if they try anyway, then they don't really believe it, but due to past history might be wary that they can't. Sometimes being wary alerts us that what we are pursuing is not in our best interest. At other times it makes us more aware of our failures by shoving proof of our insecurities in our faces. Both can help us succeed however by diverting us to something more fulfilling. Perhaps you should put this in context.

    Performing an action that we perceive as without meaning wouldn't be performed for very long. Likewise, a person perceiving life as such ends up in existentialistic depression. To view ourselves as creators, architects, writers of our own script is refreshing, creative, and promotes action and life. A lifelong project that is both psychological and philosophical, as Jung puts it.
    Ironically, existentialism can be depressing to some. They don't like the feeling of being their own creator because they feel to do so is to accept that they are ultimately alone and separate from everything else. Being your own creator also means that if you fail, you have no one to blame, but yourself, because there is no one looking out for anyone/anything, but yourself.

    Quote Originally Posted by Maritsa33 View Post
    He was an idealistic philosopher, hence an intuitive type and psychology is very much a philosophy.
    It seems weird having you admit this, lol, considering how strongly you feel your understanding of people through socionics to be often better than anyone else's.

    Quote Originally Posted by Typhon View Post
    ADDED: I guess what Im trying to say concerns mostly our relations with people. When you confront and deal with a person you're inevetably going to project some things from yourself onto them, but not everything we perceive about a person comes from yourself. That would be equivalent of saying people have no will of their own and exist in our minds only. I wish you good luck trying to make friends(and enemies!) that way. I think we can know about a person not only what we project into them, but also what they project outward; their qualities. If you blind yourself into thinking others' qualities are nothing but a projection of your own psyché then there is no knowing the other person.
    This is a really good point I hadn't thought about before. I get the feeling his point about the idea was more to reconcile with people how they can misunderstand each other on philosophical grounds. People seem to use it like you describe though...

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    I just see, feel, perceive, intuit, things I can't find the words to explain and sometimes that makes me look like I'm taking a stand that makes me look like I know more. It's just as much a journey for more aspects for me and it's not as concrete as it may seem. My concrete sureness comes form me looking like I'm being sure/judging.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Divided View Post
    If one truly believed they were unworthy and incapable of something, then they wouldn't go do those things they believe unworthy and incapable of.
    Precisely. People could feel themselves incapable of achieving something which is perfectly attainable should they attempt to, for instance. That they do not even attempt to try.

    Quote Originally Posted by Divided
    But if they try anyway, then they don't really believe it, but due to past history might be wary that they can't. Sometimes being wary alerts us that what we are pursuing is not in our best interest. At other times it makes us more aware of our failures by shoving proof of our insecurities in our faces. Both can help us succeed however by diverting us to something more fulfilling. Perhaps you should put this in context.
    You assumed that I'm talking about something impossible to attain here, when I'm speaking of something realistic which we are capable of, but *think* we can't due to some reason or another. Constraints may have existed in the past to impeded, but do they necessarily exist now? Or have we grown stronger to be able to meet and conquer them? I perfectly understand what you mean by learning from and accepting constraints though, but there will come a time for action and change after all that learning and accumulation of knowledge and we mustn't forget that.

    Quote Originally Posted by Divided
    Being your own creator also means that if you fail, you have no one to blame, but yourself, because there is no one looking out for anyone/anything, but yourself.
    True, and that's the beauty of it. To be able to take responsibility for your own life instead of relegating it to circumstance and other people.

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