The Great Snake: Christianity

  • “My problem is to wrestle with the big monster of the historical past, the great snakeof the centuries, the burden of  the human mind, the problem of Christianity.” (Jung, V. 18)

    Eugene Friends of Jung Presents

    Christianity: The Great Snake

    Jung’s Penetration of the Jesus Christ Story
    and the Individual’s Realization of Self

    Presented by John Petroni, Ph.D

    Lecture: 7:00-9:00 pm, Friday, October 21, 2011
    HEDCO Education Building
    Main Entrance, 1655 Alder Street, 2nd Floor
    Free Parking in Front Lot


    Indeed this unrelenting focus deepened his commitment to psychology, the study of soul.  His “bombshell” was: “Christ exemplifies the archetype of the self.” (Vol.9ii)  This is a psychological reversal of most dogmatic systems. 

    What is happening to the “Great Snake”?  Some say it is dead or irrelevant and antique.  Some Christian institutions are foundering, retrenching and becoming rigid.  Current New Testament studies dissolve the once monolithic grip of the image of Jesus Christ.  Jung realized that he no longer lived the Christ myth.  He asked himself:  ” ‘What is the myth in which you live?’ At this point the dialogue with myself  became uncomfortable and I stopped thinking. I had reached a dead end.”  The Christian myth, he insisted, was neglected and needs to be developed. (MDR) 

    With Jung’s insights we have the wherewithal to look into this “dead end”.  In that emptiness the imagery of the Jesus story (we will be dealing with the Jesus story, not Christian theology) reveals soul’s self-revelation.  These images, seedpods holding wisdom about reality, can be engaged, via the method of Carl Jung, to develop one’s own self-reflection.  This is about exploring the depth of soul in the experience of yourself.

    Seminar:  Growing Self-Reflection
    9:00am-4:00pm, Saturday, October 22, 2011
    HEDCO Education Building, Main Entrance, 1655 Alder Street, 2nd Floor
    Free Parking in Front Lot

     To truly understand Jung’s thought, indeed to understand psyche, one must have the courage to expose oneself to one’s own experience of one’s Self.  “The larger part of the soul, however, is outside the body.” (Jung citing an alchemical text.)  Staying within the framework of Jung’s thought, this workshop will take images of the Jesus Christ myth as a way to reflect on our own experience of our individual life and its many facets.  This communal exploration includes:

    •  The modified Socratic method of asking questions about selected texts and reflecting on individual responses. (There is no attempt to reach consensus.)
    •  Reflecting on images, emotions and thoughts that emerge ‘out of the blue’ in this communal work.
    •  Art expression, movement, and silence asnon-rational tools to grow Self-reflection.  Please bring a bag lunch.

    John Petroni, Ph.D., has practiced psychotherapy for 36 years in the San Francisco Bay Area.  During that time he has led numerous seminars with the Guild for Psychological Studies.  His seminars have focused on the reality of Soul and the development of self-reflection.  These seminars are informed by the psychology of Carl Jung and use texts from myths, the Jesus of Nazareth story, Hebrew Scriptures and the arts. 

    His doctorate from the Graduate Theological Union is in Psychology and Religion, and from St. Patrick’s Seminary a Master’s degree in Religion.  He was a Roman Catholic priest for 16 years.  He is married and has two children and a granddaughter.  His passion is the development of individual consciousness that realizes the dynamic reality of Soul, both inwardly and in the historical, cultural moment.

    For our planning purposes, please register for the Saturday seminar by mail as soon as possible Please arrive by 8:45am if you plan to register on the day of the seminar.  Registration for both events opens one-half hour prior to presentation.

    For registration information and form Click Here

    HEDCO Education Building, 1655 Alder Street.

    Click to enlarge map.