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  • Writer's pictureSusan Shepler

What is an Archetype?


The idea of archetypes has been around for a long time.

Greek Gods and Goddesses are Archetypes, for instance-- they are archetypal in the way we "collectively" intuit and imagine them, draw them, write about them, and tell their stories. In archetypal, unconscious fashion, we live their stories and not always to our benefit. We study archetypes because they wield a lot of unconscious energy, inasmuch as they are unperceived yet active energies within us, good and bad. Our archetypes, namely our personal archetypes, can be great teachers and healers. It has come to be a legitimized belief that Archetypes are a well entrenched, organic and natural part of the human psyche. Archetypes exist and manifest as energies, positively and negatively charged, personified and projected, and/or seen through patterned life and social scenarios.

Archetypes are everywhere energies existing as part of our collective intuitive abilities. Actually everyone accesses the "mythopoetic language" of archetypes. We recognize the symbols and metaphors that repeatedly appear throughout our collective and personal life journeys. We commonly find hope and learning in our stories, our parables and symbols, We discover that are actually personifications and scripts that repeat throughout the collective and personal psyche, largely unconsciously. As archetypes, having a most assured nature can be seen, recognized for their content, and understood, while they are wrapped in mystery and clothed in symbolism.

We generally find them appearing as symbols in our dreams, such as bad guys, ghosts, heroes or lovers. Importantly, archetypes become apparent in the scripts we follow, and the roles we play. We find that life scenarios expose what is archetypal in our experience. Uniquely individual, each journey offers sets of collective energies that are individually experienced.

.INTEGRATION OF THE PARTS, the Jungian Healing Modality

Jung identified archetypes as pre-existing energies within the collective and personal unconscious. He imagined the brain to have a kind of "gray matter" or DNA -- patterns appearing as images within the collective human psyche. These are pre-wired into These energies manifest, personified and projected, through all cultures and epochs as part of the general human experience. Someimtes we recognize archetype as simple life scripts or roles to play.

collectively, as part of the human psychic structure.

These patterns become our energy for life; we live within the boundaries and the memes, our cookie-cutter world views, repeating and repeating the same dramas, comedies, tragedies, a string of Shakespeare plays; no, all of them.

Jung identified archetypes as pre-existing energies within the collective and personal unconscious. He imagined the brain to have a kind of "gray matter" or DNA -- representing patterns found within the human psyche, personally and collectively.

These energies often manifest personified and projected and represent life scripts, or roles to play.

Archetypes are personified and embodied in a myriad of ways, mythological characters, heroes and dragons, for instance.

To recognize and embrace the archetypes in our individual and collective story is to have greater control over life situations and outcomes. This happens by being more attuned to inner patterns and scripts. When they go unrecognized, archetypes still affect behaviors and life stories.

Archetypes appear as vehicles for awareness. Archetypes often remain unconscious, while they affect behaviors, and beliefs common to all people, within the psyche. Archetypes appear or manifest through dreams, people or places, but according to Jung, they are seen, experienced first, and if identified, teach something about ourselves that could not be experienced or assimilated any other way. embodied, and claiming that these unconscious energies are present because they pre-exist within us.

Archetypes are mythological, divine, and primordial.

For Jung, the way archetypes manifested was paramount. Archetypes were, to Jung, awakeners by their very nature. They were there to make unknown, known. They were messengers from the unconscious, where they originated.

Freud and Jung had serious differences, major differences, when coming to terms regarding the practice of psychology, a study of human behaviors. Freud would be God himself, it seemed, an atheist. Carl Jung would keep God, Spirit, Intuition, and Divine Guidance "alive" as part of healthy psychology

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