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Carl Jung: Personality and Consciousness
Carl Jung is a theorist known for his theories on consciousness and personality. Many of Jung’s theories have influenced society today. Jung’s influence has gone as far as adding words to the English language vocabulary such as introvert and extrovert.
Carl Gustav Jung was born on July 26, 1875 in Kesswil, Canton of Thurgau, Switzerland. Jung was the second and first surviving son of Paul Achilles Jung and Emilie Preiswerk. Jung’s father was a pastor and mother was an stay at home wife. Emilie Jung was an eccentric and depressed woman throughout Jung’s life. Emilie Jung would often stay alone in the main bedroom for large amounts of time. Emilie Jung claimed at night spirits visited. Jung had an older brother named Paul, but died days later after birth in 1873. In 1884 Jung’s sister Johanna Gertrud or “Trudi” as was called was born. Later in life Trudi became a secretary to Jung. Jung’s grandfather was a wealthy professor named Samuel Preiswerk. Preiswerk taught Jung’s father Paul Hebrew at Basel University. In childhood Jung was a solitary and highly introverted child. At age twelve Jung was knocked unconscious by another child. During this time Jung began fainting at will to avoid going to school. Jung would faint when walking to school or doing any homework. Jung’s parents began to suspect epilepsy was the cause. At this point Jung realized fainting was not an option to miss school anymore. After fainting three times Jung successfully suppressed the urge to faint. Later on in life Jung recalled Carl Jung the event as learning what a neurosis was. Jung later ended up going to Basel University to study medicine. Jung met a woman named Emma Rauschenbach in 1896 and later married in 1903. Despite being married Jung still had some relationships with several woman. Two notable relationships Jung had was Antonia Wolf and Sabina Spielrein. Both women were friends, patients, and colleague’s of Jung. Despite all the relationships Jung was having, the two never divorced. Jung and Emma ended up having five children together. They had a total of five children, four girls and one boy. The children’s names were Agathe, Gret, Franz Karl, Marianne, and Helene.
Jung discovered an interest in psychology while studying medicine in Basel. Jung’s career in psychology began as an assistant physician in a psychiatric hospital named Burghölzli. Later on Jung met Sigmund Freud and both developed theories of psychology. Both men went their separate ways in 1913 due to differences in thinking. From their relationship Freud developed Psychoanalysis. Jung created Analytical Psychology or Jungian Psychology as an alternate name. During Jung’s time in psychology many theories where created. Besides creating psychoanalytic psychology with Freud, Jung created two theories still relative to today’s society. The two theories being the collective consciousness theory and the theory of personality.
Collective consciousness theory states the human psyche is composed of three parts. The three parts are personal consciousness, personal unconsciousness, and ego. Personal consciousness has the individual aware of everything in their surroundings. Personal unconsciousness has the individual repress past disappointments and forgotten materials. The Ego has it being front and center as the main organizer. Jung’s theory of personality has a person’s traits being classified as “archetypes”. There are twelve archetypes common archetypes used. The types are as follows: The Innocent, The Orphan/Regular Person, The Ruler, The Jester, The Sage, The Caregiver, The Explorer, The Rebel, The Carl Jung Lover, The Creator, The Hero, and The Magician. All the archetypes lead to another part of the theory called the Four Cardinal Orientations. The orientations consists of four components: Freedom, Ego, Social, and Order. Jung’s theory of personality was taken up further to create the Meyers-Briggs test used to find a person’s suitable career. Jung believed in two core personality traits: Introvert and Extrovert. Introverts are people that keep to themselves and can function well emotionally. Extroverts are people that are outgoing and are less self sufficient emotionally.
Jung proposed more parts of the personality we use everyday. Jung call’s how a person acts in public as a “Persona”. The term comes from Etruscan mimes that wear them as masks. The term also comes from the latin word “Persona” meaning “mask”. A persona is used as a cover to how a person acts in private. An example would be a man being a loving husband in public, but in private the husband is incredibly abusive to the wife and kids. The bad parts of our personality we refuse to acknowledge and deny existence of is called a “Shadow”. The Shadow consists of traits and actions deemed taboo, destructive, and undesirable by society as a whole. A person does not typically acknowledge the shadow as their own. Due to this sometimes a person will project their own shadow onto another person. From the example about the abusive husband would have him calling the wife abusive when in reality, it’s him projecting his own shadow onto his wife. Putting the psyche, shadow, and archetypes together makes the self. Jung’s theory is saying what makes our personality is our mind, bad traits, and other personality traits ourselves as human beings.
Jung’s autonomous is also used today as well in gender studies. Animus is the inborn image of what a man should be. Anima is the inborn image of what a woman should be. Both men and women also have their counterparts within them. For woman, the animus has them being more analytical and reflective. For the man, anima has them becoming enable for an intimate relationship. Carl Jung
Both anima and animus seek each other out from the very beginning.
Throughout Jung’s career in psychology a high fascination for the paranormal and spiritual aspects of life. During Jung’s childhood it was claimed that Jung saw a spirit come from the room of Emilie Jung. Jung held a strong belief in the paranormal and anything spiritual. Jung came up with a theory called the theory of synchronicity. Jung’s theory stated that everything in life was connected from the beginning to the end. Coincidences held deep meaning to Jung as not just coincidences, but fated encounters or events set to sync with each other. Jung believed that it was possible for two human psyches to telepathically reach each other. Jung also believed that dreams could
be used to look into the future and be used as potential warnings to us. It is also known that Jung had a fear of an extra-terrestrial invasion in life.
Jung came up with the theory of personality and collective consciousness as at the time people were not sure how others were. No one was sure what made who and what an introvert or extrovert was. Jung’s theories today are used to understand how people interact with each other. Later in life Jung became a professor at the University of Zulrich. On November 27, 1955 Emma Jung passed away. After Emma’s death Jung never remarried. Carl Jung died on June 6, 1961 in Küsnacht, Switzerland.
Carl Jung is just as important to psychology as Sigmund Freud is to psychology. If Jung had not come up with the theories he did, we would be labeling personalities very differently. We would have no idea what makes up the human psyche as well.
- Carter, D., (2011), Carl Jung and the Twenty First Century, Contemporary Review, Vol. 293(1703), p441-451
- Fawkes, J., (2016), Professional Ethics and the Polis: A Transcendent Function for our Times?, Atlantic Journal of Communication, Vol. 24(1), p40-49
- Fawkes, J., (2010), The Shadow of Excellence: A Jungian Approach to Public-Relations Ethics, Review of Communication, Vol. 10(3), p211-227
- Hall, G., (2012), Applying Psychological-type theory to Faith: Spirituality, Prayer, Worship and Scripture, Mental Health, Religion & Culture, Vol. 15(19), p849-862
- Henderson, D., (2015), Freud and Jung: The Creation of the Psychoanalytic Universe, Psychodynamic Practice, Vol. 21(2), p167-172
- Roesler, C., (2013), Evidence for the Effectiveness of Jungian Psychotherapy: A Review of Empirical Studies, Behavioral Sciences (2076-328X),Vol. 3(4), p562-575
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