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This Jungian Life

Sep 2, 2021

Recent events in Afghanistan have again put war at the forefront of collective consciousness. War’s destruction belongs to the mythic realm. Mars, the Roman god of war, was a primordial force whose altars were placed outside city gates. Although acknowledged, he was not accepted. His paramour, Venus, is warfare’s seductress, offering spectacle, pageantry, and glory.

Like all the gods of Mt. Olympus, Mars and Venus live in us as opposing forces of aggression and eros. We are charged with holding the tension of these impassioned opposites and making them conscious, lest we project shadow onto designated enemies or wage war internally as neurosis. We can stand in the complexity of conflict, suspend action, and allow the gods a place inside our psychic city gates. 

Here’s the dream we analyze:

“I had a dream me and my boyfriend adopted a child and were living in a rundown apartment full of darkness that resembled a studio we rehearsed in. Then we went to the balcony to watch missiles falling and exploding in the sky; my boyfriend was aloof to the situation. My first thought was, “this must be very exciting for the child because it’s like fireworks,” Then I realized that it’s actually really dangerous and life-threatening, so I grabbed the child and ran inside, leaving my boyfriend outside gazing at the sky. The room was pitch dark, and I could hear the voices of my mother and my brother talking about me; they were saying, “how is the baby going to survive without a shell”? Then I realized the kid has turned into a round egg in the palm of my hand, and the shell was dissolving like wet paper, leaving a bubble of fragile liquid with a fetus inside. I knew that any sudden movement could burst the bubble and kill the baby, so I tried to be as gentle and careful as I could.”


A Terrible Love of War by James Hillman.

Depth Psychology and a New Ethic by Erich Neumann.

The Moral Equivalent of War by William James.

A Story Waiting to Pierce You by Peter Kingsley.

A Hero with a Thousand Faces by Joseph Campbell.


Learn to Analyze your own Dreams: