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Friday, October 14, 2011

The soul image: anima and animus

Copy rights of the content in this article are with the respectable Author.
-VAN DER ZEE HARRY,
This step in the individuation process is characterised by the encounter with the 'soul-image', in the man the Anima, in the woman the Animus. Just like the shadow, we experience our contra-sexual components through another person. Inability to deal with these parts in us results in the anima-possessed moody man, or the animus-possessed opinionated and argumentative woman.


Models and schemas can have the tendency to become rigid in order to maintain their structure. Certainly with an in-depth analysis of the human psyche as represented by Jungian psychology, I am hesitant to lay the template of the miasms over it, and to claim that it fits wonderfully. I want the reader to be aware that I'm exploring both without being a scholar in either of them. Relating the concept of the soul-image to the miasms is certainly complicated, and the approach in this book might be an over-simplification. On the other hand, well thought out and well understood models have the trait that they can be expressed in a concise and clear way. Bringing the core of both models, Jungian psychology and the theory of miasms, together, there were so many analogies that I still dare to present them to you.
Let's continue with the concept of the 'soul model' - anima/animus. On the one hand we encounter the same mechanisms as discussed with the shadow and sycosis. Also the soul-image is largely unconscious, and bringing it to the conscious is a necessary step in the individuation process.
On the other hand, Chaim Rosenthal's work on the kingdoms convincingly shows that our 'animalistic' parts are strongly connected to the syphilitic miasm. Looking at the qualities that are developed in meeting our soul-image or our contra-sexual part, the connection with the syphilitic stage becomes clearer. Jacobi writes: 'Just as a well-rounded man gives birth to his work through his inner femininity, his anima becomes his inspiring Muse, so the inner masculine side of a woman brings forth creative seeds which have the power to fertilise the feminine side of the man. Thus there is a natural complementarity between the sexes, not only on the level where it gives birth to the bodily child, but also in the mysterious stream of images which flows through the depth of their souls and joins them together to engender the spiritual child.'
Psora has to do with 'I', sycosis with 'you', and in syphilis the coming together of I and you creates the third person for which 'you and me' take responsibility. Here our perception and responsibility transcend our ego, and are now defined in terms of 'we'. The 'coniunctio' (Jung) with our soul-image becomes the basis of (our) creation.
We need to open ourselves to the other person in order really to connect, and form a creative and fertile relationship. We therefore need to let go of the idea of separation, of opposing and conflicting interests, of animosity. This is the syphilitic challenge. A prerequisite to doing this in the outside world is that we make this connection with the contra-sexual archetype within ourselves. Once we have done this we can experience that we are one with other individuals, and with society as a whole, and that the interests and needs of others are ours.
Having raised the contra sexual part in ourselves to consciousness creates independence, and therefore also a certain degree of isolation. As discussed before, independence and isolation belong to the syphilitic realm.
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