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The Red Book by Carl Jung

By Edited Sep 20, 2016 0 0

The Red Book, also known as Liber Novus (Latin for A New Book), is a 205-page manuscript written in calligraphic text with colorful illustrations of the waking dreams of Carl Jung between 1914 and 1930. The Red Book was finished around 1930, but was not published and shown to the public until 2009 as Jung's heirs denied scholars access to study the book, which he began to work on after a falling-out with the other famed psychologist, Sigmund Freud in 1913.

Carl Gustav Jung was a Swiss psychiatrist whose influential approach to psychology has been influential in the field of depth psychology though not the first to analyze his dreams, Jung's work has become the pioneer in the field of dream analysis. In 1913, Jung began to experience strange and frightening dreams that also appeared as vision. Jung's dreams ranged from the absurd (a wise old man with wings) to the terrifying (dreaming of rivers of blood everywhere). Some say that Jung entered what we call a midlife crisis where men are often compelled to reexamine themselves and their priorities. As his self-analysis began, Jung began what would later become The Red Book.

Often Jung would write in a waking dream state - where his consciousness was "switched-off." Carl Jung's Red Book is not "personal" as we use that word now, like a diary. Instead, it details Jung's very unique experience with coming to terms with the Self, which could also be referred to as "God." What he eventually refers to as God he calls neither dead or to be found in religion or politics, but is to be uniquely discovered in one's Self. According to the Red Book's editor, it presents "the prototype of Jung's conception of the individuation process." In Jung's view, a successful life was all about balance, wholeness - Jung felt that if our lives erred too much in one direction, our unconscious would compensate for the inequality.

Apparently Jung felt The Red Book was not only too personal, but not fit for publication. After Jung's death, "The Red Book," was safely locked away and only a couple dozen people had laid eyes on The Red Book until its publication in 2009. After several years of persuasion, the Red Book was finally scanned one-tenth of a millimeter at a time with a high-resolution scanner before being published on October 7, 2009 to great worldwide fanfare. The book is currently available to be purchased on Amazon.com, with a 1-3 month waiting list.



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