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Sunday, January 3, 2016

Carl Jung: If I could not stand criticism I would have been dead long ago, since I have had nothing but criticism for 60 years.




To Robert C . Smith

Dear Mr. Smith, 16 August 1960

Why can't you understand that the therapeutic performance is a vital process/ which I call the "process of individuation"?

It takes place objectively and it is this experience which helps the patient and not the more or less competent or foolish interpretation of the analyst.

The best the analyst can do is not to disturb the natural evolution of this process.

My so-called views about it are only poor means of representing the very mysterious process of transformation in the form of words, which serve no other purpose than to describe its nature.

The process consists in becoming whole or integrated, and that is never produced by words or interpretations but wholly by the nature of Psyche itself.

When I say "Psyche" I mean something unknown, to which I give the name "Psyche."

There is a difference between hypothesis and hypostasis.

My hypothesis is that all psychic products referring to religious views are comparable on the basis of a fundamental similarity of the human mind.

This is a scientific hypothesis.

The Gnostic, which Buber accuses me of being, makes no hypothesis, but a hypostasis in making metaphysical statements.

When I try to establish a fundamental similarity of individual psychic products and alchemistic or otherwise Gnostic noumena, I carefully avoid making a hypostasis, remaining well within the boundaries of the scientific hypothesis.

The fact that I try to make you see my standpoint could show to you that I don't mind the criticism.

I only want to defend myself against wrong premises.

If I could not stand criticism I would have been dead long ago, since I have had nothing but criticism for 6o years.

Moreover I cannot understand what my alleged incapacity to stand criticism has to do with the reproach that I am a Gnostic.

You simply add to the arbitrary assumption that l am a Gnostic the blame of moral inferiority, and you don't realize that one could make the same subjective reproach against you.

I have accused nobody and if I am attacked I have the right to defend myself in explaining my point of view.

There is no need at all to blame me under those circumstances for being intolerant.

Sincerely yours,

C.G. Jung ~Carl Jung, Letters Vol. II, Pages 583-584

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