Image and Archetype
by Thomas Singer
This edition of ARAS Connections is a celebration of creative women within the Jungian tradition. This did not happen by conscious design. It only became obvious to me when I started to review the contents as a whole and realized that the driving forces for all these quite varied contributions come from the initiative of women giving expression to what moves them most. It is a fine lineage in the Jungian tradition. Mary Conover’s sublime art is the subject of a video created in collaboration with Nancy Furlotti. Mary’s grandmother was Mary Conover Mellon, to whom ARAS owes its very existence as documented in Ami Ronnberg’s The Story of the Three Women Who Created ARAS.
Nancy Furlotti, a Jungian analyst, has played a central role in many of the most innovative projects in our tradition over the years—including the Philemon Foundation and its publication of the Red Book as well as serving on the Board of ARAS for many years and helping make the digitization and internet incarnation of ARAS possible. The video was first presented as a centerpiece of the Art and Psyche conference which has thrived under the leadership of Linda Carter. The inspired introduction to the video was written by Stacy Hassan, the curator of San Francisco ARAS.
The second article is the second installment in ARAS Connections of Jacqueline Thurston’s passionate quest to bring to life and to unravel some of the mysteries of the sacred deities of Ancient Egypt. Her work is the result of years of travel, study, and photography with grants honoring her work from the National Endowment of the Arts and Fulbright Scholarships.
And finally, two of ARAS’ most dedicated contributors, Robin Jaqua and Ami Ronnberg, are featured in this first of many videos that will appear in upcoming ARAS Connections. The series was produced by Robin on themes of Jungian psychology and features some of the most influential, early contributors to the development of the Jungian tradition in America.
This edition of ARAS Connections is truly a celebration of the many creative women who have found inspiration in Analytical Psychology and, in turn, have inspired all of us in their own, unique contributions.
Additionally, I want to call attention to a new book by one of ARAS's newest board members, Robert Tyminski. The Psychological Effects of Immigrating: A Depth Psychological Perspective on Relocating to a New Place is a rare and important combination of historical, clinical, mythical and psychological perspectives that is woven together seamlessly with a poetic and symbolic eye.
Living Light: A Video with Mary Conover
by Stacy Hassen, PhD.
It is the function of consciousness not only to recognize and assimilate the external world through the gateways of the senses, but to translate into visible reality the world within
Jung, CW 8 §342
Liberating the light in matter
A quality of tenderness permeates the interaction of an artist with an analyst in the video, “Gathering of Light: Mary Conover in conversation with Nancy Furlotti.”
Recorded in the artist’s Aspen, Colorado studio before the Art & Psyche Conference in Santa Barbara in 2019, the interaction reveals the cornerstone of a shared love for the wisdom of the unconscious and explores the symbolism of light as consciousness, which has an evolutionary quality. Both women have dedicated themselves to alchemically transforming the matter of the prima materia from lead into gold; of liberating the light of the soul hidden in matter. Their work shares a common thread of active imagination, of engaging the silence and listening; of entering the depths and being with the unknown to receive psyche’s revelations. Nancy Furlotti taps into this wisdom mainly in working with the inner world through dreams, tending symbols as messengers of consciousness from the unconscious. She makes this material available in a variety of forms including: books, presentations, online interviews, and film. Mary Conover has also brought the invisible into visible reality through a variety of forms including mixed media. Being a visionary artist, Mary’s primary method directly engages the soul of nature in the open air. Amidst the raw elements of water and sunlight, curving winds and sensuous landscapes, she contemplates the world without to access the world within. Unburdening herself of a sense of duality, she connects directly to the light within life and translates this into a living poetry of images. Though the outer forms appear as a painting, pastel landscape, mixed media image, a video, interview, or art exhibit, the inner expression contains the dialogue of light present in the psyche and the natural world. These expressions of creativity bridge a subtle experience that touches the most secret space in the heart because they are created from its vastness. This video gives glimpses of the shared creativity of these two women through the experience of light in nature as a portal to the soul.
Read Living Light: A Video with Mary Conover in its entirety by clicking here and view the video below.
Sacred Deities of Ancient Egypt: A Pantheon of Paradoxes
by Jacqueline Thurston
DREAMS OF LIONS: A REVERIE
Before you read further, pause for a moment and imagine the world in which ancient Egyptians lived—one populated by dangerous creatures both large and small, including lions, panthers, crocodiles, hippos, cobras, scorpions, and poisonous vipers. Egyptologists have identified New Kingdom inscriptions that compare the war cry of the king as he rode into battle in his horse-drawn chariot to the roaring of lions. A rare inscription in which the sounds of the fury of battle were likened to the roaring of lions from a mountaintop has also been discovered. This vivid soundscape, which equates the sound of lions roaring from mountain peaks with the sound of the pharaoh’s army clashing with his enemy, is unforgettable.
While I was photographing in Egypt, I was drawn to explore the visualization of lions and lionesses as deities. I should not have been surprised, when I was awakened one morning with the gift of a dream fragment. In my dream, night had fallen and I was walking through a field of lightly sleeping lions. Their shaggy manes rested on their great paws. They lay close to one another, so I had to tread carefully. I had been given a sound to keep me safe—the soft cluck-cluck of a hen. The sound felt barely adequate to protect me from a field of slumbering lions. As I threaded my way carefully through their midst, the lions stirred but did not awaken.
This was the first appearance of the hen and the lion in my dreamscape. As I aged, this dream motif changed, and it became my task to protect an imposing but vulnerable red-brown hen in a fragile wire cage from a roaming lion. With the passage of time, I felt both unnerved and strangely comforted by these images, which I believe are messages that awakened me to my own mortality. And then, quite unexpectedly, just before the anesthesia required for a retinal procedure took hold, a lioness, not a lion, curled up beside me. Lions and lionesses have been reminders of the formidable, or so it seemed, challenges I faced in Egypt, emblems of my mortality, and protective presences. The imposing red-brown hen with her vivid yellow beak, bright eyes, and red comb remained a mystery for years until I realized, quite spontaneously, that she and I were both solo travelers faced with a series of difficult tasks we had to finish alone.
Read Sacred Deities of Ancient Egypt: A Pantheon of Paradoxes in its entirety here.
New Video Series - Robin Jaqua's Series on Jungian Psychology
We are thrilled to present the first video in this series on symbolism and Jungian psychology that was put together by Dr. Robin Jaqua in the 1990s. Robin was a Jungian Analyst, a former board member and longtime supporter of ARAS. Her full bio is below. We are very grateful to Robin and her family for the oppurtunity to digitize these videos and put them into the world again.
This first video is entitled Archetypal Symbolism - The Impact of Archetypal Images on Culture and features Robin talking with Dr. Joseph Henderson, Dr. Charles Taylor and our Curator Emeritus, Ami Ronnberg. We hope you enjoy it!
Robin Jaqua, M.A., Ph.D. was a Jungian analyst and longtime supporter of the arts, education, and environment. She earned a degree in philosophy and psychology in 1941 at Pomona College and held a variety of jobs, including working as a nursery school teacher and a dispatcher during World War II. After completing both a master's degree and doctorate in counseling psychology at the University of Oregon, she earned a diploma from the C.G. Jung Institute in Zurich before returning to Eugene. In addition to working as a counselor, Jaqua served as the director of training for the Pacific Northwest Society of Jungian Analysts and joined the board of the Archive for Research in Archetypal Symbolism. She maintained a public library for Jungian studies in downtown Eugene before donating part of her collection to the University of Oregon as the Robin Jaqua Archetypal Library, where it is now located in the College of Education HEDCO Building.