AWE — A soul's calling and an honor
In undergoing a dissertation (a rare privilege), I give thanks for the opportunity to pursue my soul’s calling to remember how to learn through art and to share this memory with others. Hearing a call that “people had forgotten how to learn through art” from my soul, I experienced a series of synchronicities that lead me to TRB (the first of Jung’s book that I read) and to Pacifica Graduate Institute. I hope that this website will help others find their way, as I have, and I dedicate it to those who have helped me on my way.
As Jung’s carved statement over his Zurich mantle read: “Bidden or not Bidden God is Present” (a saying attributed to Desiderius Erasmus) to remind all who entered that ‘Awe of the Lord is the beginning of Wisdom.’ (Psalms 111.10), I have also followed this adage.
Jung believed the artist was morally and ethically obligated to bring a gift back from the depths. Like paying the ferryman Charon for your descent , there was a price to pay in resurfacing into the world. This dissertation is my Payment. In particular it is a gift that I give in honor to my friend STEPHANIE HOLTUM who was diagnosed at the beginning of my doctoral education and died toward the end of my process. Beyond being a great friend, Stephanie testified to the gift of art. Her life's experience and the art tha blossomed from it spoke the prescient nature of art in paintings that anticipated her cancer in symbolic images of golden alchemical eggs in the locations that she eventually had cancer. Three eggs in her head and one in her hand held in an image of her breast echo Jung's statement that the God is in the egg and the disease.
Her life and her art were an inspiration for this work, and I had a number of dreams that made this explicitly clear. At one point, thinking that I needed to embrace a different dissertation topic, I had a dream that told me in no uncertain terms that I would died if I did not continue with my art-based topic. Along with other dreams of dismembered children poorly stitiched together, I was shown the deep need for this art-based work in these dreams. I believe that we need to remember the past to more fully integrate our wounds and heal these inner children. In healing my own words, like Stephanie healed her own, art can be an invaluable tool of the soul. It is my deep desire to offer this tool, to the extent that I can, to You. Remember your soul and your Self as we heal the world soul together.
A Journey Through the Dark Night of the Soul
AWE — A soul's calling and an honor
CREATOR and EDUCATOR — The School of th Soul
Jung referred to his art-based processed of The Red Book as a myth and the school of the soul in which he (and his soul) were both creators and educators. In this website Jung’s art-based approach is illuminated and animated through the myth of creation where it can be seen as the dark night of the soul through which we return to the Garden of Eden, a place of mythic harmony and unity prior to the knowledge of good and evil and hell on earth.
This Edenic vision was the mythic and imaginal landscape of The Red Book where Jung’s soul said they were “playing Adam and Eve” (Jung, 2009, p. 419) and a place that Jung (1961) returned in his nocturnal vision following his near death experience which he called the “garden of pomegranates and the wedding of Tifereth with Malchuth” and described as a “hierosgamos” (sacred union), “marriage of the lamb,” declaring the visions were the “most tremendous things” he “had ever experienced” (pp. 294-295).
The artist is not just a reproducer of appearances but a creator and educator” (Jung, 1921/1990, p. 432).
C. G. JUNG
"The vision of Eve leads astray, to adventurous odyssey, to Circe and Calypso. The vision of the mother of God, on the other hand, turns desire away from the flesh and toward the humble veneration of the spirit. Eros is subject to erro in the flesh, but in the spirit it rises above the flesh and the inferiority of carnal error. It therefore almost imperceptibly becomes the spirit, the power over the flesh in the guise of love, and thus spiritual power casts off the mantle of love; although the former believes it loves the spirit, in effect it rules the flesh" (Jung, 2009, p. 570).
In this website echo Jung's statement that "Eros cannot exist without the flesh. In resisting the inferiority of the flesh, the I resists the female soul" (p. 571). In this process I believe Eve moves into the other four stages of the soul or animal in an evolution or individuation of a woman's psychology from Eve to Helen to Mary to Sophia.