Tuesday, June 20, 2006

PsychoHeresy: C. G. Jung's Legacy to the Church

More articles on Psychoheresy can be found at Psychoheresy Awareness Ministries

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PsychoHeresy: C. G. Jung's Legacy to the Church

The overwhelming majority of Christians have probably never heard of C. G.
Jung, but his influence in the church is vast and affects sermons, books, and activities, such as the prolific use of the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator
(MBTI) by seminaries and missionary organizations. A current, popular example of Jung's legacy can be seen in Robert Hicks's book The Masculine Journey, which was given to each of the 50,000 men whoattended the 1993 Promise Keepers conference. Christians need to learn enough about Jung and his teachings to be warned and wary.

Jung's legacy to "Christian psychology" is both direct and indirect. Some professing Christians, who have been influenced by Jung's teachings, integrate aspects of Jungian theory into their own practice of psychotherapy. They may incorporate his notions regarding personality types, the personal unconscious, dream analysis, and various archetypes in their own attempt to understand and counsel their clients. Other Christians have been influenced more indirectly as they have engaged in inner healing, followed 12-step programs, or taken the MBTI, which is based on Jung's personality types and incorporates his theories of introversion and extroversion.

Because Jung turned psychoanalysis into a type of religion, he is also considered to be a transpersonal psychologist as well as a psychoanalytical theorist. He delved deeply into the occult, practiced necromancy, and had daily contact with disembodied spirits, which he called archetypes. Much of what he wrote was inspired by such entities. Jung had his own familiar spirit whom he called Philemon. At first he thought Philemon was part of his own psyche, but later on he found that Philemon was more than an expression of his own inner self. Jung says:

"Philemon and other figures of my fantasies brought home to me the crucial insight that there are things in the psyche which I do not produce, but which produce themselves and have their own life. Philemon represented a force which was not myself. In my fantasies I held conversations with him, and he said things which I had not consciously thought. For I observed clearly that it was he who spoke, not I. . . . Psychologically, Philemon represented superior insight. He was a mysterious figure to me. At times he seemed to me quite real, as if he were a living personality. I went walking up and down the garden with him, and to me he was what the Indians call a guru."

http://www.pamweb.org/jungleg.html