EPISODE RELEASED 15th OCT 2023
WHAT DID JUNG MEAN BY 'THE SHADOW'? WHAT DID HE MEAN BY MAKING THE UNCONSCIOUS CONSCIOUS? WHY IS INTEGRATING THE SHADOW SO USEFUL FOR US AND OUR RELATIONSHIPS?
What did Jung mean by ‘The Shadow’? What did he mean by making the Unconscious, conscious? What is integrating the shadow so useful for us and our relationships?
In this episode we cover the fascinating topic of Carl Jung’s concept of ‘The Shadow’ in analytic psychology; a term that has become overused in pop psychology and seems to be understood in many different ways depending on who you talk to.
To clarify the mystery, our guest today is one of the worlds most published and respected Jungian analysts, teachers, authors and commentators, Dr James Hollis. After a career teaching literature, he then retrained to become a Jungian analyst, and is still lecturing, writing books and giving psychotherapy at 83. He has written 19 books on Jungian themes, among which ‘Why good people do bad things: understanding our darker selves’ which we’ll touch on today.
What we discuss:
08:00 ‘The Shadow’ according to Jung.
08:30 A Reluctance to face what contradictory, disturbing or challenging.
11:00 4 ways the shadow manifests:
11:10 1) Unconsciously: everyone else deals with the consequences.
11:40 2) Projected onto others: we disown what we don’t accept in ourselves.
12:00 3) Being possessed by the shadow.
13:00 4) Consciously: this takes a lot of work and is a social responsibility.
13:50 Projected onto children: "The greatest burden a child must bear is the unlived life of its parents”, Jung.
16:00 “Why good people do bad things: understanding our darker selves” Hollis’ book on the shadow.
18:30 Being accountable for our actions and their consequences.
19:50 Making the unconscious conscious.
23:00 Making decisions as if we were still 8 years old.
24:50 What am I expecting the other to do, that is mine to address?
26:45 Storification and oversimplified narratives, become complexes.
31:43 Changing our relationship to our complexes.
32:30 We don’t solve these complexes we outgrow them.
35:50 What does your complex make you do or stop you from doing?
36:20 Meaning is the goal of life not happiness.
38:00 “The least of things with meaning, is always greater the the largest of things without meaning” Jung
39:00 An inner sense of purpose and satisfaction, and what to do if it’s not there.
40:20 The role of suffering, failure, and challenges in learning and meaning.
42:30 “Relationship is finding one special person you can annoy for a very long time” Mrs. Hollis.
43:45 The trickster overthrows our expectations: life’s way to force us to look in a new way.
47:00 Life is change, yet our nervous system and ego respond badly to ambiguity and the unknown.
49:30 The Ego’s complex is control - understandable but life rarely collaborates.
50:30 Ageing and mortality: an example of a summons to the ego to let go and go with it.
51:00 The ego is like a wafer thin boat floating on the vast iridescent sea of the unconscious.
52:20 “The unconscious is as vast as nature, you carry the human race inside of you”, J. Hollis.
56:45 Leading a life more examined = asking where I can change, improve and grow.
01:00:00 Most of our habits are protective, but stand in the way of our growth.
01:01:15 ‘Soul Heal’ Joe Enrique Pardo, a film about men being cut off forms their inner life.
James Hollis’ 18 other books!
‘Soul Heal’ film, Jose Enrique Pardo, with James Hollis, a film about healing the issues of men
Bernardo Kastrup, Jung’s Metaphysics CC episode
Monika Wikman, Collective Unconscious CC episode
Laura London’s, Speaking of Jung podcast