“We carry our past with us, to wit, the primitive and inferior man with his desires and his emotions, and it is only with an enormous effort that we can detach ourselves from this burden. If it comes to a neurosis, we invariably have to deal with a considerably intensified shadow. And if such a person wants to be cured it is necessary to find a way in which his conscious personality and his shadow can live together.”

“Unfortunately there can be no doubt that man is, on the whole, less good than he imagines himself or wants to be. Everyone carries a shadow, and the less it is embodied in the individual’s conscious life, the blacker and denser it is.”

–C.G. Jung, “Psychology and Religion: West and East,” from The Collected Works of C.G. Jung, Vol. II, trans. R.F.C. Hull (Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press 1975), 12, 131.

Illustration of a mandala by Carl Jung from his Red Book.

This quotation can be found in our spring issue – an exploration into the subject of sin. To order a copy or subscribe, click here.