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Monday, July 25, 2016

Joseph Wheelwright: A Salute to Toni Wolff





For many years I have managed to work into my speeches-and many personal communications-that Toni Wolff was the best analyst I ever had.

She has had formidable competition.

The others who have tinkered with my psyche have been Jung, Peter Baynes and Erna Rosenbaum, Elizabeth Whitney and Joe Henderson.

I could justify this galaxy of analysts but will desist at this time.

It has not been easy to spell out my gratitude and appreciation for her ministrations.

First and foremost she was a very superior woman and, though she was an accomplished analyst, she never identified with this persona-she was always herself.

With me she was, by virtue of her experience and personal development, an authority.

But at the same time she related to me as though we were equal as human beings.

Another pair of opposites that she contained was being a tough mother (she was twenty years older than me) when indicated, and at other times a supportive mother who believed in me.

Finally, I felt a profound sense of intimacy with her.

In 19 51 I returned to Zurich for the first time in twelve years.

I had been working desperately hard and, as happens to analysts from time to time, been pushed to my extreme limits as a person, in order to match patients who were as, or more, developed than I was.

This strain, as well as other things, plunged me into a deep depression.

I took a three-month leave of absence and went to Toni like a homing pigeon.

I sat down in her consulting room, took one look at her, sitting with her feet on the pillow that she used as a footstool, and her long fingers holding her long cigarette holder, and burst into uncontrollable sobbing.

After about ten minutes I got some control of myself, and in a gentle but firm voice she asked,
"What is it"?

I blurted out: "I am a patient," and began to cry again.

But by the time the hour was over, I felt the stirring of new life and the feeling that I had turned the corner and was going to rejoin the human race.

Her last years were not easy as, after the formation of the Zurich Institute in 1948, she was no longer the leading figure in the analytic community.

But to the end she staunchly continued to give of herself to many men and women.

Her death in 1953 was merciful.

She died in her sleep, presumably from a heart attack. ~Joseph Wheelwright, J.E.T., Pages 106-107

Carl Jung across the web:

Blog: http: http://carljungdepthpsychology.blogspot.com/

Google+: https://plus.google.com/102529939687199578205/posts

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WordPress: https://carljungdepthpsychology.wordpress.com/

Great Sites to visit:

1. Jenna Lilla's Path of the Soul http://jennalilla.org/

2. Steve Jung-Hearted Parker's Jung Currents http://jungcurrents.com/

3. Frith Luton's Jungian Dream Analysis and Psychotherapy: http://frithluton.com/articles/

4. Lance S. Owens The Gnosis Archives http://gnosis.org/welcome.html