I am looking for an ordinary explanation for the term archetype in psychology
and how it pertains to astrology? The
more I read about Jung and archetypes, the more confused I get. Do
you have a solution? e.g. is cleopatra/helen an archetype. Thanks!
Archetype? Ordinary description? (Good luck there...) Yep...
it surely is a strange word... and
to make matters even worse – the term, "archetype," is commonly used, abused, and
misused in a lot of differing ways.
assuming here (BTW) that you've already read what I had to say about archetypes
in my Unus Mundus section called "Archetypes Explained." If
you haven't, then please go back and read it now…
the human psyche - for lack of a better way to describe it – archetypes
seem to act as universal inborn "invisible energies" in the human psyche. In his writings, the ancient Greek philosopher Plato called these invisible energies the Eternal "Ideas" (or Forms). And the only way we humans
can "see" these invisible energies of the psyche is via an intermediary image and/or symbol.
not sure which book you've read (or web site you've visited) to ask the
question is Cleopatra/Helen an archetype? (And I'm assuming here that
they were referring to Helen of Troy) But certain
"larger-than-life" historical and/or mythical figures seem to act as "hooks"
(containers) for these invisible archetypal energies.
figures, over time, become "archetypal images" that represent and help
explain (paint a picture, put a face on) the ineffable, indescribable
core essence of a particular archetype.
you remember my example of the magnet and the metal shavings – and how
the invisible energy pattern of the magnet is indirectly revealed by the
would be roughly analogous to the magnet and the "archetypal image" of
Cleopatra and/or Helen of Troy would correspond with the metal shavings.
figures aren't necessarily pages out of ancient history or mythology…
modern times – many of our movie stars, matinee idols, and political leaders
seem to act as "hooks" (or containers) for archetypal energy. In
the United States, a few examples of this phenomenon might be: Marilyn
Monroe, Elvis Presley, John F. Kennedy.
Okay – I
know that all my "going on and on," regarding the difference between an
"archetype" and an "archetypal image," sounds very nit picky – and the
truth is that it won't mean a hill of beans to the average person on the
if you end up getting really interested in all this stuff – then all this
nit picky differentiating becomes muy importante. And it's always better
to learn it right the first time.
for applying all this to the study of astrology – the planets are "archetypal
the best way to understand the energy behind these archetypal images
(planets) is by going back and reading the mythology surrounding the
gods that they were named after.
theory I adhere to is that the "external planets" in our universe (for
some unknown, mysterious reason) correspond to and reflect (act as containers
to) the archetypal energies of the "internal planets" that reside within
that thou art a second little world and
that the sun and moon are within thee, and
also the stars...."
Origen, 2nd/3rd Century Christian
Mystic/Theologian, Homilies in Leviticum,126
planets of our solar system don't have invisible rays that beam down on us from above, physically
compelling us to obey them. The
external planets are "synchronistic," "acausal" reflections of corresponding
internal planets contained within each of our psyches.
planets function as "cosmic storytellers..." They don't cause behaviors and/or events in our lives. These
"cosmic storytellers" are merely the messengers... messengers endowed
with the ability to regale us with all their many fantastical stories
and myths explaining who we are in this lifetime.
me of the old saying, "Don't shoot the messenger..." So, anyway,
if one can begin gaining a good grasp of the planets (and their corresponding
symbolic meanings) – then one is well on their way to having astrology
An experience with the Archetype requires the experience of the unconscious
mind, the unconscious mind can only be accessed by developed individuals?
So who is the archetype- the dream, vision etc.
Not so... actually, the most "undeveloped" among us experience the effect of archetypes
(inborn "invisible energies") in our daily lives... In
our day to day lives, we often "unconsciously" and compulsively
get "caught up" in acting out various archetypal patterns of behavior
is that we're generally "clueless" about the effect these unconscious
archetypal patterns of behavior have on our day to day lives. Check
out my "Get a Clue" section on the Unus Mundus Menu - and that the Jungian solution
to the problem is when we finally start to "wake up" and "get a clue"
about what's going on (and controlling) us in our everyday lives... And
"getting a clue" is how we can start breaking free of our more compulsive
(and potentially destructive) archetypal patterns of behavior.
a clue" enables us to more consciously participate in our everyday decisions.
a clue" about the "unconscious" makes our lives and our actions in this life feel much less "fated,"
by the realization that we no longer have to get caught up in making all
the same old compulsive, "fated" behaviors and mistakes. "Getting
a clue" opens up real choice in our lives.
you had to go and ask a question like, "who is the archetype?"...
[in our visions and dreams]... For years
and years, Jung purposely skirted this controversial issue... and when
folks asked Jung this sort of question - being a scientist, psychiatrist,
and therapist (and not a theologian) - he generally attempted steering clear of making
metaphysical and/or religious declarations regarding the exact nature
of archetypes and the "unconscious."
throughout the centuries, the various religions and their sacred writings
have identified archetypes (and visionary, numinous archetypal experiences)
using a wide array of terminology for them... Some of
the more common examples are:
angels, gods, God, demons, daimons, principalities, powers, spiritual