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Carl Jung – Collective Unconscious, Archetypes and Spiritual Awakening


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Published: May 23, 2008 under Coaching History

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Carl Jung (1887-1961) was a Swiss psychiatrist who founded the school of analytic psychology. A student who broke with Sigmund Freud, he was a early proponent (along with Alfred Adler) of a well-balanced, individual, holistic view.

His famous theories of the collective unconscious and synchronicity draw on Eastern philosophy. He emphasized spiritual awakening in the second half of life, the value of dreams and archetypes.

His theories are the foundation of the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator and influenced the method actor training in performing arts.

Using his analytical psychology approach, he had people do life reviews, and even examined Bill Wilson, co-founder of 12-step programs, in an effort to explore human consciousness.

How has Jung influenced your coaching?

About the Author

Dr. Vikki Brock, MCC, is Team Lead for the one-of-a-kind Virtual Museum of Coaching here at The Coaching Commons. Based on interviews about the evolution of coaching with over 175 coaching 'influencers' she also contributes mightily to our Coaching Hall of Fame. Though some may consider 'The History of Coaching' a dry topic, Vikki believes 'the roots determine the fruits' and promises the museum won't be a stuffy place. Vikki is also the only executive and leadership coach we know who supports clients from a 50 foot sailboat named Cuidado, moored in Ventura, California next to the Channel Islands National Park.

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There are 7 Responses so far...

patrick williams on May 24, 2008

Carl Jung has been my mentor and hero since I first read his theories in 1969. In fact, because he made so much more sense than did Freud, Jung influenced my whole psychology career and that evolved into my coacihng career. As I have referenced Jung in many of my books and articles, he continues to be a great influence. I am now reading a beautiful illustrated biography entitled Carl Jung: Wounded Healer of the Soul by Claire Dunne. Jung in my mind is the grandfather of coaching.

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Al Diaz on May 24, 2008


Though I have not read any of his books, the quotes that have been passed on to me have guided me to where I am today.

Ilumine Ao,
Al Diaz

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Vikki G. Brock on May 24, 2008

Hi Patrick,

Knowing your background in transpersonal and humanistic psychology it is no wonder that Carl Jung has influenced you, as he has many others. I’m curious why Claire Dunne has referred to him as the “wounded healer of the soul”.

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Vikki G. Brock on May 24, 2008

Hi Al,

What are some of the quotes from Carl Jung that have influenced you?

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patrick williams on May 25, 2008

Vikki and all

I love the book Carl Jung: Wounded Healer of the Soul because it portrays him in such a human light. Claire discusses some torment of his early life, visions and dreames that led to his deep introspection and his emotional break with Freud who was his early mentor. But it also shows how Jung delved deeeply into cross polination of spiritual teachings and ancinet wisdom schools from all parts of the globe and all of history

Joseph Cambpell portrays these theories of Jung well in his Power of Myth series

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patrick williams on May 25, 2008

As far as Jung’s quotes that I love:

Here are two: “Who looks outside dreams, who looks inside awakens.”

This prompted me to create our Coaching course at ILCT called Coaching from the Inside Out in 1998

The other favorite quotes is:

“Even a happy life cannot be without a measure of darkness, and the word happy would lose its meaning if it were not balanced by sadness.” It is far better to take things as they come along with patience and equanimity.

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Tana Hartman on October 1, 2009

I was in a dark, lonely place psychologically when I stumbled at 30 years old upon the work of Carl Jung. I began to read his books voraciously and I continue to this day to find guidance and understanding in his words. He changed my life — I might even say he saved my life. Despite having been married to a psychologist and having worked for years with psychiatrists, rarely have I found so congenial a soul as Carl Jung. His words made me feel that he understood, validated, and valued (as opposed to judging or merely tolerating) my experiences, my dreams, my visions. Since then, I’ve found Thomas Moore, another soulful seeker whose insights resonate with my heart, my mind, my spirit, and my soul.

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