Mark Saban

Jungian Analyst and Psychotherapist

Preamble (September 2013)

In July 2012 I attended the inaugural conference of the International Society for Psychology as the Discipline of Interiority (ISPDI). I delivered a paper entitled “The Tautegorical Imperative: Mythos and Logos in Jung and Giegerich, Hegel and Schelling”.

After a lengthy and animated online debate (in the online Forum of the ISPDI), on September 19th 2012 Giegerich published (on the website of the ISPDI) a thirty five page rebuttal of my position(s). This paper is available to non-members and may be found at http://ispdi.org/images/stories/PDFdocuments/Saban's%20Alternative.n.pdf

In the wake of this, several people have privately asked me if they could read my original paper. I have therefore decided to make it available here.

Those interested in further developments might also like to read an article by Sean McGrath, published (to date only online) in June 2013 in the International Journal for Jungian Studies entitled ‘The question concerning metaphysics: a Schellingian intervention in analytical psychology’

 

The Tautegorical Imperative: Mythos and Logos in Jung and Giegerich, Hegel and Schelling                                         

In Wolfgang Giegerich’s 2012 book, What is Soul, he describes his psychology as ‘pushing off’ from Hillman’s Archetypal Psychology, in much the same way that Archetypal Psychology itself pushed off from Jung’s analytical psychology. The full extent of this‘pushing off’ was revealed twenty years ago, at a festival of Archetypal Psychology in honour of HIllman, where Giegerich delivered his milestone paper entitled, ‘Killings: psychology’s Platonism and the missing link to reality,’ which gave notice of a radically different psychological perspective, to be given broader and more substantial form two years later in The Souls’ Logical Life, and developed in numerous books and articles in the years since then.

It is noteworthy however that the sacred cow which Giegerich chose to sacrifice in 1992was the pivotal and central place of myth in Hillman’s imaginal psychology. In Killings, Giegerich asks “But is archetypal psychology really a psychology with Gods? Or is the talk about “Gods” in archetypal psychology merely a kind of glamorising jargon, fundamentally removed from that reality that once was referred to by the word “gods”.” (Soul Violence p.190) Here he touches upon what he later developed more fully into a radical critique of the place of myth in Hillman’spsychology.

In fact, Hillman’s emphasis upon the central importance of myth for psychology was a direct inheritance from Jung, for whom myth was the authentic and primordial voice of the collective unconscious. Hillman and his followers had developed and deepened this insight, and harnessed the polymorphous perversity of, particularly Greek, mythology to support the idea of a polytheistic psychology. With his 1992 paper, however, Giegerich terminated the bacchanalian revel of imaginal psychology: spoiling the party by introducing acold and disenchanting blast of historicism. Myth, claimed Giegerich, could justifiably claim psychological meaning only to the extent that it was situated in an actual socio-cultural-historical context. Outside of that context it wasmerely a kind of feel-good window-dressing, at best encouraging a regressive nostalgia for the lost Eden of mythic times, but at its worst claiming, neurotically, that such mythic times had never ended, and that even we moderns could gain direct access to them here and now, via the unconscious psyche.

I want first to revisit Giegerich’s arguments against a myth-based psychology, and then offer an alternative approachloosely informed by Schelling’s philosophy of mythology.

Let me begin by outlining the shape of Giegerich’s historicist demolition of Hillman’s position. The modern soul, by virtue of having emerged from pre-modern containment into a disenchanted modernity, has, according to Giegerich, entered an entirely new state of rupture, or woundedness, or brokenness. Any attempt to approach it via ‘the Platonistic realm of images’ and specifically via a mythology which derives from that pre-modern realm is necessarily incapable of doing justice to the modern soul: “In itself broken”, says Giegerich, “today’s soul cannot possibly have real access to the Gods any more.” (Soul’s Logical Life p.176) The images and stories of myth, when removed from their own setting, become for us “imaginings of a mere entertainment, subjective, aesthetic, literary or educational value” (ibid. p.177). To the extent that this fact is recognised then all is well, but if, as in the case of archetypal psychology, such images are celebrated as numinous and significant, in short, as ‘archetypal,’ then the door is opened to a neurotic avoidance of the actual situation of soul, an evasion of real life in favour of the ersatz glow of ultimate meaning bolstered through theinflation of the ego into the company of the pantheon of mythological gods.

To the extent that Hillman and other archetypalists have attempted to counter this powerful argument by Giegerich, the results have been, at best disappointing. In his immediate response to Killings, Hillman’s own argumentsfailed to engage with Giegerich on the required level. He decided either to simply ignore Giegerich’s writings or to diminish them by respectfully acknowledging Giegerich to be simply on a different, complementary path to Hillman, the animus to his anima, the senex to his puer.  

Of course, the fact that the archetypalist camp has been able to produce no competent attempt to genuinely think mythology as central to psychology, tends to support Giegerich’s diagnosis of a fundamental intellectual or logical weakness within imaginal psychology. However, it does not conclusively show that no such attempt is possible, only that it does not appear to be possible from within the assumptions of archetypal psychology.

To my mind, one of Giegerich’s most important psychological achievements is the introduction of rigorous thinking to a field that, as he has amply illustrated in numerous places, has hitherto been notably lacking in anything of the sort. It would, however, be doing this important work a great disservice, in fact it would in effect erase the benefits of such work, if we were to respond to Giegerich’s writings by accepting themuncritically as a new dogma to replace the old. Giegerich has found it necessary to push off from his predecessors, and that has introduced a polemical aspect to much of his output. In order to find the bricks required for the building of his new structures he has needed first to demolish the old structures. When it comes to the topic in hand, this has, among other things, entailed a strong denial of any psychological importance to mythology.

Much of the vigour and intellectual muscle of G’s work stems from his use of a dialectical approach to psychological work. He has found in Hegel’s logic a very flexibleand subtle means for thinking soul. While this break-through has enabled Jungian psychology to move out of a long-lasting phase of intellectual sterility and torpor, what has not yet been fully tested is the limits of this fundamentally philosophical tool when applied to the field of psychology.

Not surprisingly, Giegerichechoes Hegelwhen he comes to think about the imaginal and the mythological: for Hegel the imagination is a necessary developmental phase, a moment in the unfolding of consciousness, whereby consciousness seeks to transcend everything that does not correspond and is not adequate to the concept. Imagination, which belongs the secondary level of Vorstellung or representation (the first is intuition and the final is thought) is then an indispensable transitional stage on the way to thought and the being of the Begriff. Myth, asa mereform of Phantasiemust be seen as a moment on the way to truth.

When it comes to psychology one could identify three dimensions to this question: First, as individuals we each need to pass dialectically through the three stages, intuition, representation and thought, each stage having been fully sublated, in order to reach a properly logical level of psychological understanding. Second there is a sense in which Jungian psychology too has passed through a similar process, via Jung, and Hillman to Giegerich. And thirdly, and crucially for psychology as a logos of soul, Soul itself has developed through similar stages in history, of which the mythological was one, in its journey toward the birth of man.

I want now to concentrate upon this last narrative: which is one of more or less coherent stages of historical development: when one stage of development is completed, then it gives way to another stage. The model is linear and one-way, in other words, when one stage is completed it can never be returned to, it is left behind forever. Any attempt to return to a previous stage is necessarily doomed. This is bound up with the idea of forward-moving progress: each generation builds upon the cultural achievements of its predecessors.

The particular developmental pattern outlined in Giegerich’s work is this:

First, there is a period during which the collective is entirely contained in a mythological/ritual framework wherein the world is enchanted and saturated in meaning.

There then occurs a kind of break, which forces the soul out of its container and takes it onto a completely new level. This event Giegerich has described as the ‘birth of man’(see The Soul Always Thinks p.179ff). Despite the traumatic sense of loss accompanying this event(which is paralleled by the loss felt in the transition out of childhoood into adulthood), it is in fact a necessary development which allows for the beginning of reflective thought, the commencement of the soul’s logical life.

After the ‘birth of man’ the old mythological/ritual container is no longer capable of holding the soul. The religious/ritual framework withers away, having lost its power and sense of meaning. And to the extent that mythology survives, it does so in literary form, a set of stories which have lost their rootedness in the culture, and which can therefore no longer fully function in the way they did. Worse, out of this sense of loss emerges a nostalgia which attaches itself to the myths, and attempts to stuff them with a sense of meaning which they are simply no longer capable of holding. This nostalgic fraud is what Giegerich accuses Jung and Hillman of perpetuating.

At first glance, this argument seems very plausible: One only has to spend a little time reading Jungian and post-Jungian literature to notice the desperate hunger for meaning that underpins much of it. There is no question that much Jungian discourse is primarily concerned with the apparently bottomless need to seek and peddle this nostalgic desire for a world full of easily supplied meaning, whether it is to be found in primitive religion, eastern religion, or systems of divination. Giegerich has in numerous places expertly identified and skewered this corrosive aspect of the vulgar Jungian approach.

However, I suspect that another reason for the plausibility of this narrative of Giegerich’s about the history of consciousness, is that it functions as a powerful mythic story. It is a version of the myth of the fall, whereby a paradisal world, supplying all one’s spiritual and psychological needs, in which man is immediately in touch with and part of nature, is somehow lost. But as with the fall of Adam, the twist here is that the loss turns out to be a gain, in that it enables the emergence of a grown-up conscious way of being in the world: the fall is, as it were, afelix culpa.

Significantly Giegerich insists that this is not a mythic narrative: According to Giegerich, the birth of man is a literal historical event. One might object that Giegerich is confusing the literal-historical with the mythical-archetypal here. Indeed, one might want to quote Giegerich himself (from his demolition of Neumann, in The Neurosis of Psychology p.26): The Giegerich of 1975 argues that in Neumann,“[b]ecause of this amalgamation of the archetypal with theempirical-factual, the mythic fantasy…is deprived of its true nature and cannot bewhat it is” He goes on to ask, “Howwas it possible for this myth to be confused with empirical history in the first place?” And answers, “[b]ecause it is an archetypal andreligious system, it forces itself upon consciousness as having absolute, unquestionable truthand therefore remains unreflected, even unseen, so that, like the repressed, it must return"outside" in history, as an "observed" empirical fact.” I would argue that something of this sort is now occurring in Giegerich’s own contemporary writings on myth.

It is Giegerich’sclaims that in the mythical/ritual time, ‘consciousness was immediately connected with the objective world in a primordial identity’. (Dialectics and Analytical Psychology p.50) This is of course reminiscent of Levy-Brühl’s participationmystique and indeed, Giegerich,thoughwell aware that modern anthropologists are highly critical of Levy-Brühl’s intuition about participationmystique in primitive cultures, has maintained that Levy-Brühl was ‘basically right.’ (ibid. p.51)To support this argument Giegerich,claims that he is not talking about participationmystique personalistically(in terms of the psychologies of the individuals in primitive cultures) but rather, collectively,(in terms of what he calls the “psychologic of the objective mind” (ibid.)).

It seems to me that this argument does not entirely dispose of the problem. Giegerich is in effect claiming that even though in any given culture individuals may be capable of reason, the culture may still be said to exist psychologically in a state of participation mystique. In other words, there is no necessary relation between what individuals think, say and do, and the so-called logic of their culture. But if culture is not to be considered a disembodied logical abstraction hovering above humanity, but consists only in the actions, artworks, and statements of those who exist within it, this seems a strange line to take. Elsewhere Giegerich would seem to support this: “The Soul is nothing free-floating, totally other worldly, but is anchored in concrete reality” (What is Soul p.55)

My suggestion is that Giegerich’s (and Hegel’s) definition of myth is unduly restricted, and that the relation of mythos and logos is not in fact that of subsequent moments in a linear/historical movement of soul, but is characterised instead by a dynamicco-dependency such that, despite the tension between them, one cannot meaningfully exist without the other.

The epic poems of Homer, which are often said to inaugurate Western culture, also present us with the earliest forms of Greek myth that we possess. Interestingly, these mythic narratives arealready marked by a tension between mythos and logos. Giegerich himself makes this point: the myths of Homer are”no longer true myths in the sense of the unity of narrative and mythic status of consciousness. Myth proper is already dead, antiques” (Dialectics and Analytical Psychology p.46). This is a strong claim: thatthe Greek myths, told and retold through Homer, Hesiod, Pindar, the tragedians the Alexandrians, up through the Romans, the middle ages, renaissance etc etc, all these myths were already “dead, antiques”at the earliest point at which they were transmitted to us. If this is the case then, according to Giegerich’s strong definition, there exists no direct evidenceof real, living mythat all, despite the apparent wealth of mythology we have inherited from this, our, tradition. Its purported existence, back beyond, before history, when the ‘mythological mode of being-in-the-world’ held sway can therefore only everbe a hypothesis.  

This idea, that all the myths we actually know are merely faint echoes of some distant unattainable pre-historic genuine myth-in-itself, of which we can directly know nothing, seems to me to unnecessarily distort and mystifythe phenomenon of myth.

But how then do we account for Giegerich’s perfectly accurate insight that Homer’s epics are already contaminated by subjectivity? You are no doubt all familiar with the common mythological motif of the Golden age, whereby the age in which a myth is told is always represented as having degenerated from some previous more perfect age, when Gods walked he earth and spoke with mortals, for example. Rather than interpreting such a myth as representing a literal, historical fall from the perfect containment of a mythological being-in-the-world, I would suggest that this is a myth that conveysthe ineradicable tension between the unattainable infinitude of the mythic/imaginal worldview and the inevitable restrictions of the finite here-and-now of the logos. Both are essential aspects of a human being-in-the-world, and moreover, as I shall attempt to show, each is essential for the other.

In Giegerich’s 2011 paper The Disenchantment Complex. C.G. Jung and the Modern World,he makes the interesting and illuminating point that Jung’s vision of God shitting on Basel cathedral seems at first glance to mark a potential move from a state of childhood enchantment to adult disenchantment.

At first sight, Giegerich points out,

enchantment and disenchantment seem to refer to two different world conditions separated by a historical gulf. In Jungʼs experience, too, the intact beauty of the cathedral is an initial state, and the shattered cathedral comes thereafter as a second, separate situation. But this is only how it appears. In reality, enchantment and disenchantment, though by no means alike, are nevertheless the same. They are equiprimordial. Within their equiprimordiality the seemingly later disenchantment is even logically prior to the enchantment.(p.6)

This is a very important insight, which also sheds light upon the relation of mythos to logos. I would suggest that mythos and logos are similarly equiprimordial. What this would mean is that Homer’s epic in a sense dramatizes consciousness’s stepinto logos and the simultaneousgeneration ofmythos, as a kind of inevitable supplement. Such an idea is supported by the fact that even in the earliest Greek discourse about myth it already has the meaning “false story”. As Eliade puts it, “if the word ‘myth,’ in all European languages denotes ‘fiction,’ it is because the Greeks declared it to be so twenty-five centuries ago.” (Toward a Definition of Myth .p.3) But it would be a mistake to attribute this declaration to a literal/historical moment of emergence from the so-called mythical/ritual stage into a newly achieved proto-scientific stage of consciousness. No, the point is that myth is always already in the process ofde-mythologisation, by virtue of its essential syzygy with logos. We might compare this mythos/logos relation to that between consciousness and the unconscious: consciousness does not develop organically and gradually out of the unconscious, both are separated and connected simultaneously and primordially: the brightening of consciousness is the same as the darkening of the unconscious. Consciousness projects a chaotic darkness into the past, in a sense mythologising its own birth, and in the same way logos projects the myth of a primordial eden-time of mythological containment into that time before it appeared. Logically speaking however, conscious and unconscious, logos and mythos, disenchantment and enchantment are all equiprimordial.

I now want to tentatively address Schelling’s contribution to the thinking of mythology, and to indicate some implications it might have for a psychological approach to myth. (These thoughts are heavily indebted to arguments in Gabriel’s The Mythological Being of Reflection.)As Heidegger suggests, to be in the world is unavoidably to inhabit and see through a certain world-picture. What co-inheres with such a world-picture, says Heidegger, is that which is not contained within the world picture as such, but enframes it. Wittgenstein makes a similar point: any system of beliefs, such as inevitably come bound up with a language for example, tends to bring with it an invisible though inescapable background of metaphorical noise. This idea shouldn’t surprise us; as we know from psychoanalysis, however much we attempt to use our words to create conceptual clarity, we cannot help simultaneously marking out traces of unintended narrative haunted by unforeseen connections.

It was Schelling who argued for the importance of this mythological remainder that, he claimed, can neither be erased nor, contra Hegel, re-integrated dialectically into logical reflection. He describes this elusive region of primordial withdrawing as unprethinkable being(Unvordenkliche Sein) and locates it in the fragmentary images and narratives of mythology.

It is important to mark the gulf between this approach and that of Hegel and Giegerich, who, as we have seen, reduce the content of mythology to a clumsy, pre logical attempt at expressing logical forms. This latter approach leads directly to an allegorical method of mythological interpretation: myths ‘say something other’ (allo agoreuein) than what they seem to. So, to take the example in Soul’s Logical Life, the myth of Actaion is really an exposition of the Notion, as Giegerich points out ‘not in the Notion’s own native medium, that of thought, but in the medium of imagination - as a narrative, a myth’ (Soul’s Logical Life p.105).

Schelling’s argument that mythology constitutes an unassimilable dimension outside of logos leads him to a very different evaluation of myth. Schelling, following Coleridge, says that myth needs to be read, not allegorically, but tautegorically. Tautegorical (tauta agoreuein) means that it says the same: myth says what it means to say, no more no less.

For Hegel and Giegerich the images and stories of myth resembletheshadows on the wall of Plato’s cave: all we need to do is turn around and see the reality and truth of the notion. If we do so, we shall have no more need of myth. But for Schelling myths are not the obscure shadows of logical processes, they have an irreducible primordiality of their own.

Schelling thus draws a strong line between two quite different worlds, the logical and the mythical. There must therefore be two different forms of knowledge to accompany these worlds. Mythical knowledge differs radically from logical knowledge: Calasso describes it as “a metamorphic knowledge… where knowledge is an emotion that modifies the knowing subject, a knowledge born from the image, from the eidon, and culminating in the image, without ever being separated from it or admitting a knowledge higher than itself.” (The Forty Nine Steps, p. 262)

For Schelling the unprethinkable nature of Mythology means that it can never be transformed (allegorised) into a reasonable product. On the contrary, its very strangeness is evidence of its brute, unassimilable alterity. But this alterity is nonetheless, as we saw, intimately linked to logos in a relation of tense co-dependence, hence their age-old locking together in mythos/logos opposition. For Schelling, Hegel’s logic merely creates a new mythology, the ‘mythology of reason,’in fact Schelling insists that mythology cannot be overcome by Hegel precisely because his philosophy unwittingly ‘reads logical contents into the form of mythology’ (Gabriel p.65).

Any particular set of tales of Gods and heroes supplies for any culture or historical era a mythology: a network of specific symbols, metaphors etc. such as unprethinkably enframed, say the archaic Greek world in the form of those familiar narratives we call the Greek myths. Many, though not all, of these symbols, because of important shifts in Western consciousness, have, as Jung described, suffered a withering away and a death such that they no longer work for us. However, in any one period there will be a range of possible mythologies, so that, for example it is inaccurate to talk about Greek mythology as if consisted of one finite set of mythological images or narratives. There are chthonic myths and Olympian myths, there are myths which portray the inconsistencies and conflicts between them, and for any one myth there are numerous variations. So there is never a single monolithic myth or set of myths which holds the whole culture in its grasp, but rather heterogeneous and constantly fluctuating mythologies that uneasily coexist at any one time. Indeed one could argue that the ancient world provides a model of a culture wherein all possible mythologies might cohere or conflict, pagan, Jewish, Christian, atheistic, skeptical, even proto-scientific: a mythological Babel.

My claim is that Giegerich’s(and Hegel’s) insistence that the shift into modernity constitutes a birth out of an age of mythology into an age of logic does not provide a sufficiently nuanced picture of the place of myth in either the pre-modern or the modern world. That there have been identifiable shifts in consciousness throughout historical time remains indisputable, but the question is how do we account for and describe these changes. The evident plausibility of the Hegelian theory is rooted, as I suggested earlier, in the fact that it is consistent with what has been a dominant mythology in the West: that of Christianity. It is an essential aspect of the Christian myth that the birth of Christ represents a radical break with the past, that the old pagan world of myth has at a stroke become obsolete, that the logos has superceded the idol, the image. It is true that Hegel turned this around and suggested that the Christian myth itself is, in a sense, a crude blueprint for the dialectical birth of spirit. But the point here is that both are in fact consistently under the sway of the same mythic trope. The shift they describe is a real one and they do indeed refer to what constitutes a genuinely new worldview. But that worldview in turnis inevitably enframed with a new set of myths. Rather than taking it on its own terms, as a truth that supercedes all previous myths, our perspective needs us to recognize it as merely that myth which we have inhabited during the Christian era, but which, as we falteringly enter a post-Christian era needs to beseen as just another myth. When we swallow the mono-myth: “this truth has superceded all the old myths, now there is only this one truth”, we merely show ourselves to be possessed by it, and blinded to all else.

So, while there has undoubtedly been mythological movement over the last 3000 years, from predominantly theonomic mythologies (like those of the ancient Greeks, Romans or Teutons, to predominantly ontonomic mythologies, such as we find with the pre-Socratic philosophers, where the Gods metamorphose into forms of Being, to autonomic mythologies in the modern world, which are marked by the move from being to thought, from authority to reason and from community to the individual, these shifts do not represent the sublation of the old into the new, so that it is swallowed up entirely in order to create a new all embracing total myth, but rather a new layer of myth to add to the old.[1] Of course the rhetoric of that myth, especially modern myth, seeks to persuade us that it has overwhelmed and excluded all previous myth, and it does so by arguing that it isn’t a myth at all, but ‘the truth’? We can all see this process clearly when the myth has failed, as in the case of Fascism, or Dialectical materialism, and we call these failed, totalising myths ‘ideologies’, but a living, hegemonic, omnipresent myth such as that of scientism escapes our notice because we are caught by it, we find it hard to see behind it.

I want to finish off with a few words in defence of Jung’s idea of the ‘personal myth’, attacked so trenchantly by Giegerich. If we accept that,in modernity, mythology is no longer theonomic or ontonomic but autonomic, and that one aspect of this is a shift from myth as collective phenomenon to myth as individual phenomenon, then this will obviously be reflected in the way in which myth is seen, experienced and created. If for modernity the individual has become the centre of gravity, then Jung’s question to himself:(“what is your myth, the myth by which you do live?” MDR p.171)should be recognized as the question of the age. It is crucial here to differentiate the concept of the individual from that of the ego. Jung’s groundbreaking work on myth and individuation is not in the service of the ego. On the contrary. And nor is it an attempt to covertly and illegitimately reintroduce long obsolete mythical ideas into a disenchanted modernity.This has nothing to do with New Age attempts to bolster the ego by identifiying it with Gods or Goddesses. In fact, by forcing together the apparently exclusive and contradictory ideas of (collective) myth on the one hand, and individual (personal) experience on the other, Jung discovers the role of myth in modernity: soul is to be found in the mythic conflict at the heart of the modern individual. Here he is following Schelling who suggests that the modern individual is

called to structure from this evolving (mythological) world, a worldof which his own age can reveal to him only a part. I repeat: from thisworld he is to structure into a whole that particular part revealed tohim, and to create from the content and substance of that world hismythology. (Philosophy of Art p.74)

Bruce Matthews amplifies this insight:

The individual is thusresponsible for creating his own “poetic circle for himself” so that, inaccordance with the law of originality, the more original that poeticcircle is, the more universal does its meaning have the chance ofbecoming. In the absence of a universal mythology, the mythologicalcircle produced by the individual thinker or poet provides the vehicle for the intuition of the infinite within the finite. (Matthews, Schelling’s Organic Form of Philosophy p.201)

As unprethinkable realm, myth introduces deep and threatening alterity to the apparent knownness of the ego personality: and the myth that Jung recounts in the form of MDR indeed involves the repeated encroachment of the Other, in the form of the unconscious, into the known life of the ego. It is a myth of ongoing splitness and conflict, in the form of the two personalities. Hölderlin, (contemporary to Schelling and Hegel) offers a relevant perspective here. Confronted with the basic problem of modernity, a problem with which Jung too wrestled: how to overcome the impossible gulf between the past-projected unified myth of wholeness and the atomised ego of reflective consciousness, Hölderlin finds the solution in the creation of what Zizek describes as “a narrative which retroactively reconstructs” what he calls the ““eccentric path” of permanent oscillation between the loss of the Center and the repeated failed attempts to regain the immediacy of the Center…” It is the creation of this narrative which constitutes “the process of maturation, of spiritual education.” (Zizek, The ParallaxView, p. 157)

This is, to my mind, a pretty good description of Jung’s individuation, re-visioned as autonomic myth-making, precisely as Jung carries it out in MDR. Here myth functions to simultaneously bridge and highlight the gap between two ineradicable orders: one experienced as infinite Other, one as assimilable same. In fact in MDR this is exactly how Jung talks about his personal myth: “In the end the only events in my life worth telling are those when the imperishable world irrupted into this transitory one.” Myth must always stand in disruptive relation to the rational logical order of finitude. Myths are strange but not ultimately incomprehensible, and as Marquand puts it, they “tell these truths into our life-world, or… tell them, in our lifeworld, at the kind of distance at which we can bear them.” (Farewell to Matters of Principle, p.90)

Works referred to:

Calasso R. ‘The Terror of Fables’, in The Forty Nine Steps, University of Minnesota Press, 2001

Eliade M. “Toward a Definition of Myth.” Trans. Teresa Fagan. In Mythologies. Eds. Yves Bonnefoy and Wendy Doniger. Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1991

Gabriel M “The Mythological Being of Reflection – An Essay on Hegel, Schelling, and the Contingency of Necessity in Mythology” in Gabriel and Zizek, Madness, and Laughter: Subjectivity in German IdealismContinuum 2009

Giegerich W. What is Soul, Spring Publications 2012

Giegerich W. Dialectics & Analytical Psychology: The El Capitan Canyon Seminar, Spring Publications 2005

Giegerich W. “Ontogeny = Phylogeny! A Fundamental Critique of Erich Neumann’s Analytical Psychology”, in The Neurosis of Psychology (Volume 1 of Giegerich’s Collected Works) Spring Publications 2005

Giegerich W. “Killings”, in Soul-Violence (Volume 3 of Giegerich’s Collected Works) Spring Publications 2008

Giegerich W. “The End of Meaning and the Birth of Man”, in The Soul Always Thinks (Volume 4 of Giegerich’s Works)Spring Publications 2010

Giegerich W. ‘The Disenchantment Complex: C.G. Jung and the modern world,’ International Journal of Jungian Studies,Volume 4,Issue 1, 2012

Jung C.G. Memories Dreams Reflections, Vintage 1973

Marquard O. ‘In Praise of Polytheism’ in Farewell to Matters of Principle, Oxford University Press 1989

Matthews B. Schelling’s Organic Form of Philosophy, State University of New York Press 2012

Schelling F.W.J The Philosophy of Art, University of Minnesota Press 2008

Zizek, S. The Parallax View, The MIT Press 2009



[1]I have taken these three categories of mythology from Gabriel. See Gabriel p.71