SEVEN SERMONS TO THE DEAD

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The full title being:

THE GNOSTIC JUNG AND THE SEVEN SERMONS TO THE DEAD

Carl Jung permitted the publication of only one solitary fragment from the vast amount of archetypal material which he wrote under mysterious inspiration in the early part of his career. It was written in a short time sometime between December 15, 1916, and February 16, 1917. According to Jung's statement in his autobiographical fragments, it was written in three evenings.

The writing of this small book was heralded by weird events and was replete with phenomena of a parapsychological nature. First, several of Jung's children saw and felt ghostly entities in the house, while he himself felt an ominous atmosphere all around him. One of the children dreamt a religiously colored and somewhat menacing dream involving both an angel and a devil. Then—it was a Sunday afternoon—the front doorbell rang violently. The bell could actually be seen to move frantically, but no one visible was responsible for the act. A crowd of "spirits" seemed to fill the room, indeed the house, and no one could even breathe normally in the spook-infested hallway. Dr. Jung cried out in a shaky and troubled voice: "For God's sake, what in the world is this?" The reply came in a chorus of ghostly voices: "We have come back from Jerusalem where we found not what we sought." With these words the treatise, which is entitled in Latin Septem Sermones ad Mortuos, commences and then continues in German with the subtitle: "Seven exhortations to the dead, written by Basilides in Alexandria, the city where East and West meet."

As Jung repeatedly emphasized, orthodox Christianity (and, one should include orthodox Judaism as well) has demonstrably failed to satisfy the deepest and most essential needs of the soul of Western humanity. Christian theology was far too rationalistic, reductionistic and insensitive to the profound reaches of the human soul.