Carl Jung3was what he was searching for.
In 1895, Jung studied medicine at the University of Basel. In 1900, he worked in the Burghölzli,a psychiatrichospital in Zurich, with Eugen Bleuler. His dissertation, published in 1903, was titled "On the Psychology andPathology of So-Called Occult Phenomena." In1906, he published
and later sent a copyof this book to Sigmund Freud, after which a close friendship between these two men followed for some six years(see section on Relationship with Freud). In 1912 Jung published
Wandlungen und Symbole der Libido
(known inEnglish as
Psychology of the Unconscious
) resulting in a theoretical divergence between him and Freud andconsequently a break in their friendship, both stating that the other was unable to admit he could possibly be wrong.After this falling-out, Jung went through a pivotal and difficult psychological transformation, which was exacerbatedby news of the First World War. Henri Ellenberger called Jung's experience a "creative illness" and compared it toFreud's period of what he called neurasthenia and hysteria.During World War I Jung was drafted as an army doctor and soon made commandant of an internment camp forBritish officers and soldiers. (Swiss neutrality obliged the Swiss to intern personnel from either side of the conflictwho crossed their frontier to evade capture.) Jung worked to improve the conditions for these soldiers stranded inneutral territory; he encouraged them to attend university courses.
In 1903, Jung married Emma Rauschenbach, who came from a wealthy family in Switzerland. They had fivechildren: Agathe, Gret, Franz, Marianne, and Helene. The marriage lasted until Emma's death in 1955, but he hadmore-or-less open relationships with other women. The most well-known women with whom Jung is believed tohave had extramarital relationships were patient and friend Sabina Spielrein
and Toni Wolff.
Jung continued to publish books until the end of his life, including
Flying Saucers: A Modern Myth of Things Seen inthe Skies
, which analyzed the archetypal meaning and possible psychological significance of the reportedobservations of UFOs.
He also enjoyed a friendship with an English Roman Catholic priest, Father Victor White,who corresponded with Jung after he had published his controversial
Answer to Job
Jung's work on himself and his patients convinced him that life has a spiritual purpose beyond material goals. Ourmain task, he believed, is to discover and fulfill our deep innate potential, much as the acorn contains the potential tobecome the oak, or the caterpillar to become the butterfly. Based on his study of Christianity, Hinduism, Buddhism,Gnosticism, Taoism, and other traditions, Jung perceived that this journey of transformation, which he calledindividuation, is at the mystical heart of all religions. It is a journey to meet the self and at the same time to meet theDivine. Unlike Sigmund Freud, Jung thought spiritual experience was essential to our well-being.
In 1944 Jung published
Psychology and Alchemy,
where he analyzed the alchemical symbols and showed a directrelationship to the psychoanalytical process. He argued that the alchemical process was the transformation of theimpure soul (lead) to perfected soul (gold), and a metaphor for the individuation process.
Jung died in 1961 at Küsnacht, after a short illness.
Relationship with Freud
Jung was thirty when he sent his
Studies in Word Association
to Sigmund Freud in Vienna in 1906. The two menmet for the first time the following year, and Jung recalled the discussion between himself and Freud asinterminable. They talked, he remembered, for thirteen hours, virtually without stopping'.
Six months later, thethen 50-year-old Freud sent a collection of his latest published essays to Jung in Zurich, which marked the beginningof an intense correspondence and collaboration that lasted six years and ended in May 1910. At this time Jungresigned as the chairman of the International Psychoanalytical Association, where he had been elected with Freud'ssupport.