All the love in the world

I’m finishing up my 5th quarter in Pacific Graduate Institute’s program leading to an M.A. in what they’re now calling “engaged humanities.” The most difficult class this quarter has been “The Psychology of Compassion and Tolerance.” My final discussion post reflects how it has expanded my understanding:

This quote from Marie-Louise von Franz (1978/1980) sums up the meaning of this course for me: “In this world created by the Self we meet all those many to whom we belong, whose hearts we touch” (p. 177). Here is the true goal of individuation: The drive toward wholeness is not a selfishly motivated desire to attain whatever heights our fate might have in store, but the longing to join at the deepest possible level with our eternal companions. I understand now so much better what Jerry Wennstrom said at our residential session, “True individuality is a one-on-one relationship with that mystery.... Marilyn [Jerry’s wife] and I were nothing, and in that nothing, we could be together.” In the ego’s surrender to the Self, we find not only our true selves but all the love in the world.

Franz, M.-L. von. (1980). Projection and re-collection in Jungian psychology: Reflections of the soul. Peru, IL: Open Court. (Original work published 1978)