From earliest childhood, Carl Gustav Jung felt a need to live in close harmony with nature. Later, in alchemy, he found a philosophy of life that approximated what the exploration of the unconscious had taught him about “an art of seeing” that respected natural, physical, and psychological phenomena. These views brought him nearer to medieval alchemy and ancient hermeticism than to the scholarly naturalism of his time. With an attention so scrupulous that it was almost “religious”, Jung scrutinized the psyche of the modern man grappling with the unconscious. The premonitory nature of some of Jung’s visions led to him being qualified as a visionary. But it was all the more visionary on his part to have allowed the psyche to see according to nature, the source of a vital and spiritual dynamism that also qualifies as a work of culture.
By Françoise Bonardel