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Monday, August 24, 2015

Carl Jung’s gift from Laurens van der Post




To Laurens van der Post

Dear van der Post, 28 February 1956

Your amiable present from Africa has reached me safely.

The bow and the little arrows are just charming.

I could not refrain from trying Cupid's weapon and I can confirm its efficiency.

It shoots quite a distance.

I am much obliged also for the maker's photograph.

I have followed up your interesting trip through your reports published in the Neue Zurcher Zeitung, and all my old longing to see Africa,

God's unspoilt wilderness and its animal and human children once more [has returned].

Helas-I have seen and tasted it once at least vita somnium breve-so many things cannot be repeated and so many happy times cannot be called back.

No wonder that the thoughts of old people dwell so much in the past, as if they were listening for a living echo that never comes.

Time and again I have to make a vigorous effort to tear myself away from the things that have been in order to pay attention to things present, even to the future as if I were meant to be in it once.

I am deeply obliged to you for having remembered my fateful 80th birthday.

I am glad at last that I have been able (though not through my merit ) to spare my wife what follows on the loss of a lifelong partner-the silence that has no answer.

I thank you once more for your kindness.

Please give my best regards to Mrs. van der Post. ( . . . )

Yours cordially,

C.G. Jung ~Carl Jung, Letters Vol. II, Pages 292-293