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Tuesday, May 19, 2015

Carl Jung on “Mana Personality.” Lexicon




Mana-personality:

A personified archetypal image of a supernatural force.

The mana-personality is a dominant of the collective unconscious, the well-known archetype of the mighty man in the form of hero, chief, magician, medicine-man, saint, the ruler of men and spirits, the friend of God.["The Mana-Personality," CW 7, par. 377.]

Historically, the mana-personality evolves into the hero and the godlike being, whose earthly form is the priest. How very much the doctor is still mana is the whole plaint of the analyst![Ibid., par. 389.]

Mana is a Melanesian word referring to a bewitching or numinous quality in gods and sacred objects. A mana-personality embodies this magical power. In individual psychology, Jung used it to describe the inflationary effect of assimilating autonomous unconscious contents, particularly those associated with anima and animus.

The ego has appropriated something that does not belong to it. But how has it appropriated the mana?

If it was really the ego that conquered the anima, then the mana does indeed belong to it, and it would be correct to conclude that one has become important.

But why does not this importance, the mana, work upon others?

. . . It does not work because one has not in fact become important, but has merely become adulterated with an archetype, another unconscious figure.

Hence we must conclude that the ego never conquered the anima at all and therefore has not acquired the mana. All that has happened is a new adulteration. [Ibid., par. 380.]