Prolific author, publisher, and Zürich-trained Jungian analyst Daryl Sharp passed away peacefully on Oct. 8, 2019. He was my friend, my teacher, and the main inspiration for this podcast. I take comfort in the fact that he was surrounded by family and friends, and that I was informed ahead of time of what was inevitably to come.
I have not been at all happy with the work I’ve done with this podcast. It’s far from my original vision. I’ll probably have more to say about that at some point but for now I’m re-committing to what I had originally set out to do: promote the work of Jungian analysts and Inner City Books. Albeit not through audio, it seems.
Here is an excerpt from one of the many books Daryl gave me, Eros, Naturally: Jungian Notes from Underground with Sett In My Ways (A Badger’s Tail), published in 2013 by Inner City Books.
It [analysis] is a unique experience to have the undivided attention of someone who clearly cares to hear what you have to say. You have friends you can talk to when in need, but they are not objective and they have their own problems. A Jungian analyst has been trained to put aside her or his own troubles, and complexes, and focus on you. That is refreshing, like a warm shower.
The analytic process has often been likened to a cleansing bath. Here is analyst Marie-Louise von Franz, esteemed doyenne until, and still, after her death in 1998:
In many dreams the analytical process is likened to taking a bath and analysis is often compared with washing or bathing. In German you talk of ‘washing someone’s head,’ i.e. scolding them, or showing them where they are wrong in their ideas. Most people when they come to analysis have an awkward feeling that something of the kind is necessary and that their sins might come out. Thus the idea of a bath is a very obvious simile. The dirt that covers the body might mean psychological influences in the surroundings which have contaminated the original personality.
Of course, this raises the question of what ‘psychological influences in the surroundings’ might ‘contaminate’ one’s personality? Good question, which I’d thought of it first. Von Franz writes the following:
Well, we are all influenced by our culture; there is no escaping that, whether it means ‘keeping up with the Joneses’ or simply coveting the woman next door or the latest gadget touted to make our lives easier or more fun. To those I would add the spoken or implicit injunctions to be active, ambitious, to be ‘out there,’ buying or protesting in the streets against what irks us politically – in short, we are immersed in an extraverted culture that by its very nature contaminates everyone.