2 Answers

  1. Carl Jung was an esoteric. Carl Jung was also a psychologist – one does not exclude the other. He perceived these two things as interrelated – for example, he considered medieval alchemy (part of esotericism) as a metaphor for psychological work on oneself. He also described learning yoga exercises, which for him were also part of a more general system of psychological work.

    Jung had a rich personal mystical experience, which he described in the Red Book. Jung himself recognized that his psychological system was the disclosure, comprehension, and rationalization of his experiences. In the book “Memories, Dreams, reflections” there is a chapter “Confrontation with the unconscious” – this is, in essence, a concise presentation of the esoteric background of Jung's ideas – there are also visions of spirits, alchemy, and yoga. To summarize, Jung noted in this chapter:

    Today I can say that I have never lost touch with my early experiences. All my work, all my creativity, was born out of those fantasies and dreams that began in 1912, almost fifty years ago. Everything I achieved later was already contained in them, although at first only in the form of emotions and images.

    But if, of course, esotericism is reduced to “belief in reptilians”, then it is another matter – then most of the esotericism (Kabbalah, Gnosticism, Hermeticism and further down the list) can be safely excluded from this category. However, just the same Jung has a work on reptilians… well, not exactly about reptilians – about UFOs. It's called ” One Modern Myth: About Things Seen in the Sky.”

    For further immersion in the topic, we can recommend the work of G. Lachman ” Jung-mystic. Esoteric aspects of Carl Jung's life and Teachings” (Jung The Mystic: The Esoteric Dimensions of Carl Jung's Life and Teachings; there is a Russian translation).

  2. I'm not that familiar with his background and approach. But as far as I understand from what I have read, and from Petukhov's lectures (the famous course given at Moscow State University, video and audio on the Internet), his understanding of the collective unconscious, archetypes, and personality theory are quite materialistic. Another thing is that he is poetic; he is a straight culturologist-culturologist, and at the same time poetic. This can, I think, create an impression of esotericism. But-what kind of special “secret knowledge” is there? Shadow, Anima/Animus, etc., are the same constructs as all other analysts (Superego, etc. in Freud, Parent-Adult-Child and their subspecies in Bern), or the brain-exploding concept of self-Perls.

    But – I really didn't dig deep. You never know, maybe I do not know, but he believed in reptilians or in the fifth chakra, or called spirits)…

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