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Paperback The Symbolic Quest: Basic Concepts of Analytical Psychology - Expanded Edition Book

ISBN: 0691024545

ISBN13: 9780691024547

The Symbolic Quest: Basic Concepts of Analytical Psychology - Expanded Edition

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Book Overview

This book explores the use and development of man's symbolizing capacities-those qualities that make him distinctly human. Dr. Whitmont describes the symbolic approach to a dream, which takes into account a symptom's meaning in reference to an unfolding wholeness of personality. He then presents the view that the instinctual urge for meaning is served by the symbolizing capacities, and that this urge has been repressed in our time. In the field of...

Customer Reviews

5 ratings

A Classic on the Path of Individuation

I read Whitmont's work in the late 70s after an intense spiritual awakening which was first expressed in Christian fundamentalism in the early 70s. During a time of study at the C.G. Jung Foundation and the New School (New York City) I began to discover the spiritual meaning and personal potential of the Christian myth. The work continues to this day, and I am thankful to Whitmont and others (Edinger, Neumann, Jacobi, Von Franz,) who extended the insights of Jung for pioneers along the path of individuation.

A Scholarly Academic Introduction To Jung

Much more than a primer or a simple introduction to Jung,this carefully written book expresses itself succinctly in capturing key Jungian concepts within it's proper framework and the crucial formulation of it's historical underpinnings(showcasing where appropriate the differences with Freud and at times with Adler,analyzing in detail the immense philosophic background and depth of Kant,idealism,phenemonologyy) as a vehicle in which Jung crafted his philosophy turning him into one of the major pillars not only of psychology but of thought in general whose ideas and insights reverberate throughout today's climate despite the obvious shift away from traditional psychoanalysis into medicinal therapy. You will walk away understanding Jung after reading this book but it is no simple read. Its text is eloquent and is not a simple beach book. Its pages are woven carefully by a Jungian scholar and rather than diminish the ideas of Freud and others, the author, a top ranking Jungian, explains Freud and others to the reading public within a framework of understanding not only about Jung but after reading the book the major concepts and ideas of the psychoanalytical movement in general and specifics. Another wonderful read on Jung but more suited for actual case studies and in a more relaxed style is June Singer's Boundaries Of The Soul, but for the seriousness that Jung deserves Whitmont's book can't be beat.

Ed W. Can Do

If anybody can take the pains to read and reread a book inch by inch, over and over again, ad infinitum, until you reach the other side, then by all means read this book! Being able to learn, retain and actually actualize the ideas he espouses, as you go along, into one ever expanding platform is all essential to even remotely comprehending so much as the first chapter, let alone the first page of this entire book! Mr. Whitmont is extreemly intellectual and wrote this book for people like him that thirst for inner knowledge. The text is written AS IF you already happen to know a number of words used only by depth psychologists. So be prepared to learn literally a text book of data per every page. This work is hailed as the next generation of Jungian thought written by Jung's prodigy student and spiritual heir apparent. And cannot be expected to be instantly readable by everyone, especially those already angry with Jung in general.Yet with each new concept integrated into your understanding of Jungianism, there will be a definite reward in terms of personal growth. I promise you a rose garden!

The Essential Popular Introduction to Jung

The Symbolic Quest remains the best popular introduction to the theory and practice of analytical psychology.Contents: Introduction -- The Symbolic Approach -- The Approach to the Unconscious -- The Objective Psyche -- The Complex -- Archetypes and Myths -- Archetypes and the Individual Myth -- Archetypes and Personal Psychology -- Psychological Types -- The Persona -- The Shadow -- Male and Female -- The Anima -- The Animus -- The Self -- The Complex of Identity: The Ego -- The Ego-Self Estrangement -- Ego Development and the Phases of Life -- Therapy -- Notes -- Bibliography -- Index

Bum Rap

Whitmont presents the basic concepts of Jungian psychology in prose which is, indeed, intricate (one of the less pejorative meanings of "convoluted"); but there is no better overview and summary of Carl Jung's astonishingly broad and comprehensive theories. This is not and is not meant to be a "popular" book but does seek - and reaches - a general reader who is willing to learn. The Redwood City reader takes the allegedly incomprehensible sentence out of the context in which it is embedded. On the page previous to it, active thinking is contrasted with passive thinking and thinking is contrasted with feeling. With that in mind - a "translation": "Active thinking brings a representation (i.e. a likeness or image rising from perception) to a process of ordering and sequencing which establishes a cause-effect relationship between a given event and that which appears to [but does not necessarily] follow it."Whitmont's next sentence points out that this interpretation [i.e. the assignment of a cause-effect relationship] is "imposed" upon the facts and because of this may or may not be a true and valid interpretation of them. "Pretentious" can mean "making demands on one's skill" - though I doubt that is what Redwood City reader means to say. In the sense of "unjustified claims of value" - which is probably what was meant, he is in error; but in the former sense, it is true, the book makes demands and offers great rewards.
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