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I'd like to invite others to share responses and experiences as we delve together into Jung's Red Book.  We'll begin at the start of Liber Primus and work through the Red Book ten pages a week sharing personal responses to Jung's grand experiment.

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  • The Red Book falls open, illumined by the rising red moon as it emerges from a lunar eclipse.

    Pages 94/95 of Liber Primus shines out revealing the red crossed quaternity in the centre of the eye of God. First open, then closed.

    The blood red tide rises to the lunar pull and feeling flows into the hearts of men. 

  • Exactly David,

    Excellent comments.

    When a person reaches that point they have four choices:

    1.  Redefine ego self..  i.e. affairs, new car, new job.......

    2.  Look for someone to surrender their authority to and recreate a dependency

    3.  Allow fear to freeze growth, stagnate and die

    4.  Go within and surrender to the Divine (always the hardest as the portal is relatively narrow)

    Jung was stuck in #1 

    You cannot approach #4 from intellect.  Jung could not step out of intellect.

  • Jung was a man of his times as well as a man of the depths. The Red Book is one man's honest attempt at wholeness and reflects the limitations of the mind in approaching this mystery as well as its profound contribution.

    The 'Wolff' was at his door and may have gobbled him whole had he let her in fully.

    "The door of the Mysterium has closed behind me. I feel that my will is paralyzed and the spirit of the depths possesses me. I know nothing about a way. I can neither want this nor that, since nothing indicates to me whether I want this or that. I wait without knowing what I am waiting for."...The Red One p259 of the Red Book.

  • Jung used dreams as his connection to the "collective conscious."  (I purposely leave the "un" off)  That's why he used the dreams, as he could not connect with it directly. 

    In order to fully connect, one must be whole.  In order to be whole, one must embrace both their masculine and feminine within and to paraphrase the Sufi poet Rumi from the 13th century,  "life is about finding and removing the obstacles to Love that exists within."  Why?  Love is the glue that binds the masculine and feminine aspects of consciousness together at all levels in order to stabilize the "whole" so one can climb the ladder to higher levels.  Jung never understood this little secret.   

    We are our own soul mate!

  • I don't think Jung ever meant the Redbook to be published.  It is a collection of his thoughts and artwork from other projects.  Every page is cut and paste, both artwork ans script.  Many of the color plates were published in his commentary on "The Secret of the Golden Flower."  Much of the commentary is transcribed from his black handwritten notebooks.

    His grandson spoke of pulling the Redbook off the shelf and sitting on the floor with this huge book on his lap, turning through the pages.

    Funny thing, it's almost as though the Redbook was Toni Wolff's project.  It began when his love affair with her began, and ended when she left him.  Jung used her as his personal crutch to replace the Divine Feminine he denied in himself after the profound spiritual experience in 1913.   If I recall correctly, Jung's wife Emma was going to leave him several times and each time he threatened to kill himself.  Toni would bring him out of these deep episodes.

    Jung never went through a spiritual awakening.  He had glimpses of it, but denied himself the full experience.  As such, he didn't fully understand many of the sacred spiritual writings he commented on.  This is true even after his near death experience in 1944.  I still put him on a pedestal for all that he did.

    His children kept the book locked up after he died.  But Jung kept it out and shared much of it, even giving away transcriptions of some of the pages to friends.  That's one of the reason's I think Toni Wolff compiled the Redbook as Jung did not treat it as one of his prized writings. 

  • I'm confused whether or not this group is still active. Can someone let me know please.

  • So glad this group exists- I'll enjoy reading through yoru comments in preparation for leading several study groups beginning in January on the Red Book in Sonoma County.


  • Just joining this group. . . got the red book for Christmas and I read/review in small chunks, but what depth and wisdom . . .


    I shudder at the thought of it still sitting in a vault somewhere. . . what a waste that would have been.  What a gift . . . and to see that good ole' Carl with all his wisdom and knowledge still struggled with as much "stuff" as many of us do.  I find great comfort in that as I'm sure some of you do too. 

  • Adele-- I love that you took Jung's cue in your own writing.  I'm not sure if I want to do the same or not; it feels like my inner critic gets more than his fair share of attention already!  But the exercise might bring to consciousness judgments I'm unconsciously reacting to anyway, so maybe I'll do it.  My inner critic (as a one) is not so much shaming but constantly is pushing me to try to be better, more "perfect", relentlessly telling me what I "should" be doing, when, where, and for how long.  It can be exhausting!  And like you, I sometimes feel discouraged that I haven't grown more adept at dealing with the critic and then at other times, I worry that without it, I'd lose my focus and sense of purpose.  This reminds me of the Red Book on page 270 where Jung says, "You seek limits and restraints so that you do not lose yourself, tumbling into infinity."
  • This video affected my own journaling this morning, for I decided to let my inner critic spill its' guts, a bit, thinking about Jung's Scrutinies.  Tamara, your mention of the Enneagram feels like a synchronicity to me, for I have been studying that system this week and realized my inner critic, as a 2, comes out as a voice of shame.  I probably even have shame at still having an inner critic, after years of work on becoming more conscious and doing personal growth work; so to realize that someone as outstanding as Jung struggled with this same sort of negative voice helps me feel less ashamed and more amused, really, at the things my critic has to say.
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Special Study Group: Jung's Red Book with Jungian Analyst Robert Bosnak Starts January 19, 2013

In case you haven't seen the news, there is a several-months-long SPECIAL STUDY GROUP: Jung's Red Book with Jungian Analyst Robert Bosnak starting January 19, 2013. This consists of audio portion with Robert which you listen to plus a correlating study guide; then an online written forum discussion moderated by Robert and two individuals who have studied with him for years. The info is listed in the Events section here: the Study Group/Discussion portion, as you'll see, is in the group called…

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Rose Holt VIDEO on how Jung wrestled with the scathing voice of the critic in writing the Red Book

Just came across a very interesting video by Jungian Rose F. Holt. In it, she discusses how Jung really wrestled with an inner critic during the writing of the Red Book--a scathing voice that really took him to task and with which he had to enter into relationship and establish boundaries (my words, not hers) so as not to be taken over by it. Its only 4.5 minutes long--You can watch it at

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