Walking with Goddesses: A Workshop for Women

Nourish the garden of your soul with goddess stories. Dust off the tales lurking within you that have healing powers. In a fun, creative and respectful environment we will come together in a circle of women to explore the energies and tales of the juiciest goddesses. We will walk in their footsteps. We will listen to tales of the Goddess from many traditions in all her phases: maiden, ripe woman and crone. We will unravel and explore the divine wisdom encoded in these myths, focussing on the story of Innana.

Jenni Cargill-Strong has been telling stories professionally since 1993. She toured for ten years telling stories from Perth to Hobart to Auckland at folk festivals, corporate and community events and in over 1300 schools. She has taught for the Sydney Opera House Bennelong Program and has performed and taught at the Woodford Folk Festival since 1993, the Byron Writers Festival 2004 and the Whole Woman Festival 2007. She founded the Story Tree Company in 2006. Her training includes a B.A. in English Literature and Sociology from the University of Queensland and a Diploma from the Drama Action Centre in Sydney, where she specialised in story telling and studied clowning, improvisation, dance, singing, mask, mummers, percussion and workshop facilitation.

Re-imagining Trauma

To view trauma through mythic vision means to see into and through the literal story to the deeper mystery that it connects us to. Pain and suffering are very real and yet, as we dig deeper, unfolding and peeling back each layer, we discover there is far more there than we could have anticipated. It is here, in the depths, that we may find healing, in a new vision of what we have experienced and who we are. In his book Re-Visioning Psychology (1975), James Hillman writes, “Myths talk to psyche in its own language; they speak emotionally, dramatically, sensuously, fantastically…Through the mythical perspective we perceive significances and persons, not objects and things.”

Through storytelling, art, and myth, Christina will explore the idea of re-imagining trauma as initiation and discuss the impact of a therapeutic response that lacks imagination.

Christina Carney works for a non-profit organization in Syracuse, New York, as an advocate for victims of sexual and domestic violence. She is currently finishing her Master’s Degree at Pacifica Graduate Institute. The degree is in Engaged Humanities, with an emphasis in mythology and depth psychology. Christina’s primary interests are in Shamanism, mythology, archetypal psychology, storytelling, and ritual, particularly as they pertain to the field of trauma. Christina also has an extensive background in the arts.

Gold: Glimpses of that “One Thing”

"Everything breathes together."
  — Plotinus

"Behold I will do a new thing, can you not yet perceive it? "
  — The Prophet Isaiah

"One night I awoke and saw, bathed in bright light at the foot of my bed, the figure of Christ on the cross. It was not quite life-size, but extremely distinct and I saw that his body was made of greenish gold. The vision was marvelously beautiful, and yet I was profoundly shaken by it."
  — Carl Jung

"Glance at the Sun. See the Moon and all the Stars. Gaze at the beauty of Earth’s greenings. Now, think."
  — Hildegard of Bingen 1170

"Another world is not only possible, she is on the way. On a quiet day I can hear her breathing."
  — Arundhati Roy

"Whatever is born or done at this particular moment of time has the quality of this moment of time."
  — Carl Jung

"I have a feeling in my bones that there is a possibility of a creative religious explosion occurring early in the next millennium with the ancient land of Australia at the centre of it…"
  — Max Charlesworth

"The American civil rights leader Andrew Young once wrote: “We can change history through finding the one thing that can capture the imagination of the world. History moves in leaps and bounds” At the moment we are waiting, breathless, for that “one thing”"
  — Dennis Altman

In 1914 Jung had visions of blood rising and wondered if he was psychotic. When World War 1 broke out he realized the vision was prophetic. This led to his journey to the underworld and his confrontation with the unconscious and ultimately to the completion of the Red Book. !n 1939 as once again the world prepared for war he received what I believe is his greatest unacknowledged contribution to humanity, the vision of a Greenish Gold or Alchemical Christ. Curiously this extraordinary vision has been largely ignored by Jungians, apart from Murray Stein’s chapter in “Jung’s Challenge to Contemporary Religion” (1987). I will use the Archetypal Astrology of Ric Tarnas which directly builds on the work of Jung, Hillman and Grof to explore the possible meanings of this vision. I will put forward my thesis, backed by astrological and cultural data, that we are now in a Kairos moment in time and that the Alchemical Christ born 70 years ago in Switzerland has now migrated to Australia and has the potential to catalyze the creative religious explosion many of us have been longing for.

Jeff Power has a BA in Creative Arts and MA in Analytical Psychology. He has recently begun a PHD exploring the potential relationship between his family history in Gold mining, his decade on the Gold Coast and his obsession with the Gold Christ. At various times he has been an electrician, a youth worker, therapist, writer and painter. In recent years he has been dragged, kicking and screaming towards an obsessive love for the ancient feminine art and science of Astrology. He recently allowed his alter ego out of the closet and bottle and performed as The Mysterius Doctor Mercurius at the West End Carnivale. He likes to spend his spare time with his partner and 3 boys preferably under the sun and/or moon and stars and in or near the ocean.

Archetypes, Animal Instincts and the Brain

"Archetypal theory tells us that we carry in our cells and synapses the legacy of two million years of human striving and selfhood. What motivates and moves us can be found in a panoply of ancient images and myths from long before the Greeks. The story that our childhood encodes in our brain as to what we should be is sometimes out of sync with who we are. When we fail to rewrite the story and reshape our neurons, the body will tell us we are living a lie and rebel against us. The test for who we are is found in whether our doing is in harmony with our being. Trouble comes when it isn’t."
  — Blair Justice and J. Pittman McGehee, Raising Lazarus: The Science of Healing the Soul

Jung’s most basic and far-reaching discovery is the collective unconscious or archetypal psyche. In terms of neurobiology, Jung saw archetypes as inherited modes of functioning, predisposed patterns of behaviour. Jung’s theoretical perspective was inspired in part by his observation of the hallucinatory fantasy of an uneducated schizophrenic patient which was followed by his experience of meaningful connections to the symbols and rituals in the obscure art and literature about initiation into the Mithraic Mysteries.

Anna will present examples of Jung’s amplification of the images in the iconography of Mithraism in his interpretation of animal instinct in the affect-laden experiences of individuals. Mithraism has been referred to as a sister religion to Christianity, and more recent studies of the origins of the Mithraic mysteries can be used to illustrate the development of ideas about cosmology, sacrifice, and salvation in the dialectic of development between religion and science that has informed the Western mind. Sharing from her research in comparative symbolism and observations and experience of the power of religious imagination, Anna hopes to evoke further exploration and contribute to an ongoing conversation about the relationship between recent discoveries in neuroscience and the potentials of our participation in the unfolding of a divine drama that is often described as an evolution of consciousness.

Anna is a Clinical Social Worker and a Board Certified Registered Art Therapist currently employed as an Allied Health Professional at Royal Children’s Hospital in Brisbane. She has over thirty-five years of experience of advocacy and service in the field of Complementary and Alternative Medicine. In her multidisciplinary team-work with children who have been diagnosed with life-limiting illnesses and their families, she is integrating the findings of research in neuroscience into the professional practice of facilitating families in their adjustment to diagnosis. This work often involves efforts to inspire others in the search for meaning. Her integrative practice includes creativity as a therapeutic principle and advocating the importance of the arts in the healing process.

Responding to Art: Image and Archetype

James Hillman’s revisioning of psychology lies essentially in his imaginal method, which is a widening and a deepening of Jung’s idea that “The psyche consists essentially of images” (CW8 p. 325)

In his essay An Inquiry into Image (Spring, 1977, p 62-88), Hillman explores what it is that makes an image archetypal. He concludes that any image has this quality if it is approached in the right way, that is, soulfully. He says “There is an invisible connection within any image that is its soul”. The archetypal quality of the image “emerges through a) precise portrayal of the image; b) sticking to the image while hearing it metaphorically; c) discovering the necessity within the image; d) experiencing the unfathomable analogical richness of the image.”

Western artists across the ages have consciously incorporated symbolic imagery into their work, but if Hillman is right, a meditative connection to the image itself, rather than an intellectual interpretation of the symbolic content of the work, will give us a greater connection to the soul inherent in the image.

Anne will first introduce some of the basic ideas of Jung and Hillman concerning image and archetype. She will then introduce a number of paintings and invite the audience to explore with her their responses to them in terms of a connection to archetypal imagery.

Anne Di Lauro is a Jungian-oriented psychotherapist in Brisbane and president of the C.G. Jung Society of Queensland. She has been interested in art and art history for most of her life and has been led by her daimon to live for a time in some of the art centres of the Western world.

The Jung – White Letters: a Theatrical Performance

This performance is based on the correspondence between Carl Jung and the English Dominican priest Victor White. The recently published edition of their complete correspondence (Routledge, 2007) charts their relationship beginning in the aftermath of the Second World War.

Jung hoped that his correspondence with White would help him to reinterpret the classic Christian symbols and White sought Jung’s support of his project to integrate analytical psychology into Catholic theology. We gain a valuable insight into Jung’s thought with regard to the relationship between psychology and religion as well as into the warmth of Jung the man.

We see the excitement with which Jung, by then in his seventies, engaged with this representative of the church and the flowering of a warm friendship between the two, which eventually floundered on their differences on the subject of the nature of evil.

The role of Jung is played by Swiss Jungian analyst Paul Brutsche and that of White by Zurich-based Irish analyst John Hill. The Soror mystica is played by Heike Weis and the narrator is Ann Lammers, co-editor of the letters.

The DVD is part of a series of recordings published and distributed by the Asheville Jung Center, North Carolina www.AshevilleJungCenter.org

Tending the tree

"All theory, my friend, is grey, But green life’s golden tree."
  — Faust I.

In his Alchemical Studies Jung published a series of thirty-two images of the Tree. These were spontaneously produced by Jung’s patients who knew nothing of the tree’s alchemical or mythological symbolism; indeed, neither did Jung at the time when most of the images were produced. Jung came to understand that the unconscious produced this image so frequently because the tree stands as the preeminent symbol of growth, renewal, and transformation. The unfolding and growth of a tree is a metaphor for the unfolding and growth of an individual, physically, psychologically, and spiritually.

In his important essay entitled The Philosophical Tree, Jung explained how the whole process which we now understand as psychological development or individuation was designated the “philosophical tree”, a poetic comparison that draws an apt analogy between the natural growth of the psyche and that of a plant. The philosophers’ tree or tree of wisdom was to be sought inside: for a transformation of consciousness to take place, one had to seek and know this inner tree. Jung wrote, “If a mandala may be described as a symbol of the Self in cross-section, then the tree would represent a profile view of it: the Self depicted as a process of growth.” The all-embracing image of the Cosmic Tree is a fitting symbol for the unconscious source (the root), the conscious realization (the trunk) and the “trans-conscious” goal (the crown) of individuation.

The tree has been one of humankind’s most universal symbols. This presentation, including rich visual images, will highlight the tree’s appearance in religious traditions, myth, ritual, legend, alchemy, shamanic initiation, aboriginal lore, sacred literature, art and poetry, as well as in the dreams and visions of ancient and contemporary seekers and seers. We will explore the manifestations and meanings of this rich and multi-dimensional archetypal motif as a symbol of self-unfoldment. You will also be invited to experience a gentle guided tree meditation, to support grounding, strengthening and centring.

Suzanne Davidson, BA, LLB, AACC, is currently undertaking post-graduate studies in depth psychology and mythology at the Pacifica Graduate Institute, California. A former practising lawyer, communications professional and conference producer, Suzanne founded a career consultancy for adults in mid-life called Life Artistry. With her husband James, in 2000, she established eContent Management, an academic and scholarly publishing house (www.e-contentmanagement.com). After making a tree-change from Sydney, Suzanne now lives in Maleny, Queensland, amidst the shelter and majesty of many wondrous trees.

Facing the Shadow: The Dark Archetype

The concept of “the shadow”, becoming conscious of it and integrating it, is often perceived as the place where psychological work in ‘the Jungian tradition’ begins. Jung himself described such a process as the initial stage or ‘apprentice–piece’ of analysis and this comment taken out of context may lead to an underestimation of the depth and complexity that psychological work with the shadow encompasses.

This talk will focus on the biblical story of the brothers Jacob and Esau as a way of exploring different levels of the archetypal shadow. The story is the foundation myth of the nation of Israel and as such occupies an important position in the development of Western religious consciousness. It is a strange story of deception, betrayal, redemption and forgiveness. The name Israel means ‘he who struggles with God’.

This talk is the third in the foundation series offered by Marie Makinson for The C G Jung Society of Queensland. Marie is a Jungian analyst in private practice in Lismore NSW and Brisbane.

The strange and beautiful red book

"I wrote these fantasies down first in the Black Book; later, I transferred them to the Red Book, which I also embellished with drawings."
  — C. G. Jung – Memories, Dreams, Reflections

From 1912 until the 1920’s, Jung undertook what he called in Memories, Dreams, Reflections a “confrontation with the unconscious.” While maintaining contact with the every-day world through his family and his work with his patients, he would retire to his study in the evening to explore a world of images that came to him spontaneously through dreams and fantasies – “material that burst forth from my unconscious, and at first swamped me.”

“All my works, all my creative activity, has come from those initial fantasies and dreams… Everything that I accomplished in later life was already contained in them, although at first only in the form of emotions and images.”

Thanks to the efforts of the Philemon Foundation and of the historian of psychology Sonu Shamdasani, the Red Book, a large folio red leather bound volume, has finally “come out” into the wider world. Consisting of a facsimile of the original hand written pages, and accompanied by a translation into English and an introductory essay, it is a marvel of beauty, otherworldliness and strangeness.

We shall introduce and explore the Red Book and a copy will be available for you to look at.

Panel Members: Suzanne Davidson is currently undertaking post-graduate studies in depth psychology and mythology at the Pacifica Graduate Institute, California; Anne Di Lauro practises psychotherapy from a Jungian perspective in Brisbane; Marie Makinson is a Jungian analyst in private practice in Lismore and Brisbane.

The Significance of Aboriginal Artificance of Aboriginal Art

In this presentation, Colleen Wall will give an overview of the significance of aboriginal art, presenting some key examples. She will also help us to launch our new logo – a stylized turtle – by talking about the significance of the turtle.

Colleen Wall is a Senior Dauwa Clan woman of the Ka’bai Nation from the Mt Bauple region south-west of Maryborough. She has worked in the area of Aboriginal art and culture both in her professional field as well as ‘country’ responsibilities and is knowledgeable in Aboriginal Law and cultural heritage. She works from a cultural law framework and profiles the importance of connection to land as this is the Law that governs all. Colleen has worked for the past 15 years in Arts Queensland as Manager of the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Programs.

Now the Arts and Cultural Director of Wanyiram Pty Ltd, a company owned by her immediate family, she is working in partnership with Consultant Groups in these fields as well as working on her traditional country photographing and documenting sites and profiling them in both literature and paintings. Wanyiram Pty Ltd also undertake commissions for cultural and arts projects in the area of Traditional connections and stories, climate change and documenting processes that show how Aboriginal people lived on this land for thousands of years.

Some of her major achievements in cultural works are:- the management of the writing and publication of two major histories for Arts Queensland – ‘Reality of a Dark History – from contact and conflict to cultural recognition’ and ‘Making Connections – A journey along Central Australian Aboriginal trading routes’ and ‘Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Mapping of South Brisbane Peninsular’ for Positive Solutions. Her latest project involves the mapping of ‘Aboriginal Pathways around Brisbane’ for Brisbane City Council. Wanyiram Pty Ltd is also working with the Macadamia Society and Trust in protecting macadamias or Bauple’s Nuts in the wild. The Bauple Nut, like the Bunya Nut is a sacred sustenance of the Kabi Nations.

Colleen is currently the Executive Director of the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Women’s Legal and Advocacy Service.