Active Imagination and the Dead

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Abstract

The dead who appeared in Jung's death dreams and visions profoundly influenced Jung's experience and understanding of the unconscious. 1 1 Jung's model of the psyche emerged as a result of his confrontation with the unconscious. During this intense time he had numerous encounters with figures of the unconscious; significant among these were the persistent appearances of those he called ‘the dead’. In his own words, ‘The conversations with the dead formed a kind of prelude to what I had to communicate to the world about the unconscious’ (Jung, 1961, p. 217). Since the publication of The Red Book a significant amount of material on the dead has come to light and points to the possibility that when Jung referred to ‘the dead’ in his personal material he was, in fact, referring to the literal dead as a separate category of experience. Such consideration has a bearing on concepts such as active imagination and the transcendent function.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)46-59
Number of pages14
JournalInternational Journal of Jungian Studies
Volume8
Issue number15
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2 Jan 2016

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