Understanding the I Ching or Book of Changes

It has been suggested that C. G. Jung’s single most famous work could well be his 1949 foreword to the Richard Wilhelm’s translation of the I Ching.1 Jung first came into contact with Wilhelm in the 1920s, and was profoundly impressed by his understanding of the subtleties of the Book of Changes. Indeed, it is more than likely that his theory of synchronicity was directly inspired by Wilhelm. According to Jung:

Anyone who, like myself, has had the rare good fortune to experience in a spiritual exchange with Wilhelm the divinatory power of the I Ching, cannot for long remain ignorant of the fact that we have touched here an Archimedean point from which our Western attitude of mind could be shaken to its foundations.2

In this workshop we will examine the history and structure of the I Ching, and also compare its oracular method with other forms of divination. The session will start with a presentation on the I Ching itself, as well as the part played by Wilhelm and Jung in regard to its reception in the West over the last century. Although the I Ching is not simply an oracle, that is how it most often viewed. An important part of the workshop, therefore, will be a particular focus on how best to consult the Book of Changes.

If you have a copy of the I Ching, in particular the Wilhelm translation, please bring it along, as well as three coins of the same denomination. The ideal size is around the ten cent coin – the twenty being a bit big and the five a bit small. There’s no need to bring Chinese coins with holes in them, though if you have a set, do bring it along!

Karcher, S. (1999). Jung, the Tao, and the Classic of Change, Journal of
Religion and Health, 38 (4), 287- 304, p. 296.
Wilhelm, R. & Jung, C. G. (1972). The secret of the golden flower: A Chinese
book of life. (R. Wilhelm & C. F. Baynes, Trans.). Routledge, p. 140.

Laurence Browne has a PhD in Philosophy from the University of Queensland, where he is an Honorary Research Fellow within the School of Historical and Philosophical Inquiry. He is the author of The Many Faces of Coincidence, published in 2017 by Imprint Academic, Exeter, U.K, as well as a number of journal articles, most recently: Coincidence in Chinese Fiction and Chinese-inspired Fiction, published in June 2022 in The Australian Journal of Parapsychology.

Jung and the body

Throughout the history of Western thought, the body was often viewed with suspicion, as an impediment from true knowledge. From Plato to Christianity and then Descartes; we still witness the psyche-soma dissociation in biomedical models that rule today’s notion of health and illness processes. The human gesture is charged with psychic energy, however often neglected or downplayed in the clinical setting.

As Jung wrote: “We cannot rid ourselves of the doubt that perhaps this whole separation of mind and body may finally prove to be merely a device of reason for the purpose of conscious discrimination – an intellectually necessary separation of one and the same fact into two aspects, to which we then illegitimately attribute an independent existence. (Jung, 1972: 619)”

Isn’t the body (gestures) a manifestation of our persona/archetype and a way we relate to the world? Should not the physical symptom also be considered as an important symbol to be integrated, and not solely suppressed, as an expression of new possibilities and possibly more meaning in the patient’s life? Is it possible to ignore the role of the body in the transference and counter- transference dynamics within the clinical setting?

In this presentation, Flávio De Grandis proposes to investigate such ideas and present some clinical cases to illustrate the importance of the body in Jungian psychotherapy practice.

Brazilian born Flávio De Grandis is a physiotherapist with a Masters degree in Science, and a Jungian psychotherapist, completing a degree in Philosophy at Deakin University and currently training with ANZSJA (Australian & New Zealand Society for Jungian Analysts).

The Other Goddess

Carl Jung, writing on the archetypes of the collective unconscious, reflected on a myth as a ‘specific stamp of an unconscious content and thus can reveal the nature of the soul’. In my talk, ‘The Other Goddess, Recovering the Archetype of the Goddess Lost: Ninmah, Inanna, Isis and Mary Magdalene’, I will discuss the lineage of goddesses that now reveal themselves to us again as the balancing act of the dance of the feminine (‘anima’) and the masculine (‘animus’), as well as sexuality and spirituality.

In my research on Mary Magdalene, I found many unusual links to feminine divinities of the past and have reached the conclusion that Mary Magdalene has become a focal point for the lost archetype of the Other Goddess in her conspicuous absence in our lives.

The stories of the Tree of Life and the Tree of Knowledge, the Serpent and the Resurrection of the young king in the presence of the Goddess were previously recounted in Ancient Sumer, Babylon and Egypt with Inanna, Isis and Mary Magdalene at the centre of the archetypical story of the importance of the Other Goddess.

About the presenter
Dr. Joanna Kujawa is the author of The Other Goddess: Mary Magdalene and the Goddesses of Eros and Secret Knowledge (April 2022), many short stories (Best Australian Stories 2004 and 2005), essays and an academic volume on spiritual travel. She sees herself as a Spiritual Detective who asks difficult questions about spirituality, such as ‘Can spirituality and sexuality be experienced as one?’, ‘Who was the real Mary Magdalene?’ and ‘How can we bring back the Divine Feminine to create a more balanced and interconnected world?’ She has PhD from Monash University, and MA and BA from the University of Toronto. You can connect with her via her book – https:// www.amazon.com/Other-Goddess-Magdalene-GoddessesKnowledge/dp/1945026847, Facebook, Twitter or YouTube, https://www.joannakujawa.com

Psychology and Spirituality in Young People

Suicide is the leading cause of death among young Australians aged 15 to 24. Even more disturbing, these figures continue to rise. The solution? Jung would propose a return to ancient wisdom. That is, the use of ancestral knowledge traditions that highlight the importance of connections to Self, Spirit and Nature. How can this be achieved? In therapy, mythos can be used to reframe logos—mythological stories and creative imagery can help young people to make meaning from their suffering like Sisyphus, or learn the importance of balance like Icarus. Archetypal symbols can also help youth feel connected to something greater than themselves, and their immediate problem or issue.

Spirituality means different things to different people. For Jung, it is about religious and non-religious experiences that help an individual connect with their spiritual selves through quiet reflection: time in nature, private prayer, yoga, mindfulness and meditation, music, dance or art. Jung was against dogma in all its forms. Yet he understood that spirituality is essential for individuation. In young people’s increasingly fast-paced, mediated and technologically advanced world, it is vital.

This seminar is about the practical application of Jungian psychology and psychotherapy to improve the lives of young people. In particular, how Dr Gordillo uses Story Image Therapy (SIT for short) in daily practice to facilitate young people’s spiritual, emotional and psychological growth.

Emerging research shows that spiritually integrated approaches to treatment can be effective. Moreover, there are scientifically-supported reasons to be sensitive to spiritual practice in clinical work and counselling. Unlike other life dimensions, spirituality has a unique focus on the sacred—themes of transcendence, individuation, meaning-making and connectedness. Any psychology that overlooks these, according to Toula, remains incomplete. Asking young people about their spiritual views can open the door to deeper conversations. And it is through this dialogue with the personal and collective unconscious that young people can transcend their suffering, like the phoenix rising from ash, to attain their highest potential.

About the presenter:
Dr Toula Gordillo is a practicing Clinical psychologist and Jungian psychotherapist in busy medical centres on Australia’s Sunshine Coast. She is also a former school teacher, guidance officer intensive behaviour support and acting head of student services in some of Queensland’s largest state high schools. As an international guest speaker, Toula has engaged school staff, students and parents in learning the importance of ancient stories and images for health and wellness at Wakatipu State College, New Zealand and Cambridge College, India.

Dr Gordillo is a published author of numerous academic and non-academic journals, magazines and books including: Youth Voice Journal, Viewpoint, The Artifice, Immanence – Journal of Applied Myth, Story and Folklore and Cambridge Scholars Publishing. She has been a guest speaker for the Sunshine Coast’s Australian Broadcasting Commission (ABC) and has presented at seminars and conferences including: the Narrative, Health and Wellbeing Research Conference presented by Central Queensland University, Children’s Media Symposium hosted by the University of the Sunshine Coast and the International Mental Health Conference presented by the Australia and New Zealand Mental Health Association.

Toula is a member of the CG Jung Society of Queensland, the International Depth Psychology Alliance, the Australian Society of Authors, The Queensland Writer’s Centre and the Australian Child & Adolescent Trauma, Loss and Grief Network (ACATLGN). Dr Toula Gordillo Dr Gordillo is the author and creator of Story Image Therapy (SIT)®, Talk to Teens and The Mythic Toolbox.

A Big-Enough Land: identity, and Self without borders

Misidentification is one of the most persistent and insidious causes of suffering and mayhem. Although developmentally we need to establish a solid and boundaried sense of ego-self and to feel a sense of belonging in our own culture (natal, or chosen later on), this means we will find our selves living on a land of borders, peopled with the acceptable; a place of exclusive invitation, guarded against potential invasion from ‘the other’ and from the unconscious. Every time we feel, “I am this, and not that,” we tend to polarise and contract.

Yet safety is a core psychological need at all ages, especially when we have suffered abuse, criticism and rejection, abandonment or trauma. So, how to negotiate a less contracted landscape in our psyche; one where we can feel safe to explore, to wander, to include and celebrate, rather than feel compelled to silence or reject our own opposites and the opposites in others. And who are we beyond the opposites?

Kris sees this negotiation as a practical activity – potentially worth pursuing because it can directly enhance our sense of freedom, well-being, wholeness and connection – but not as a moral activity of shoulds, goodness or forgiveness. This is a should-free land; this land is your land!

The tension of opposites is as ancient as light and dark, star dust and gravity; it fills Greek mythology, Vedanta, Christianity, and the ‘I, it and Thou’ of Martin Buber. It is as all-pervading and stubborn as a hundred daily annoyances; it is both stealthy and alluring.

In this presentation Kris will use Jung’s concepts of individuation, the transcendent function and projection as the basis for applying the processes of the Psychology of Selves and Voice Dialogue to this intriguing issue of identity and identification in our relationship with ourselves and with others.

About the presenter:
Kris Hines is a counsellor and facilitator in private practice on the Sunshine Coast. She has a Diploma of Counselling, a Diploma of Teaching and an M.A. in Education. She draws on an extensive experiential background in Jungian psychology through analysis, professional development, and archetypal mythology and dream work. She has presented professional development trainings for the ACA and QCA, and workshops on themes of Jung, voice dialogue, bonding patterns in relationship, myth, conflict resolution, voice, and life journey and self esteem for children and adults. Her work has also been in prisons, in Sydney and New York, and in a spiritual community in India. She is trained in Voice Dialogue facilitation and often uses its concepts in individual and couple work as a powerful way to bring unconscious patterns into the light for conscious integration. She is eternally thankful to Carl Jung for his concept of wholeness and the healing richness it brings, and for his de-pathologising of the human condition.

Images of the Jungian Influence in Psychotherapeutic Practice

Jungian theory can be intellectually demanding to engage with, and bordering on mystical in its esoteric nature. Mythological themes and complex archetypal images can be illuminating and bewildering in equal measure as one engages in the rich Jungian canon. This presentation will consider some of the less poetic aspects of the Jungian literature; some Jungian concepts that are useful in the day to day practice of psychotherapy. The argument will be made that several Jungian concepts provide the therapist with unique advantages in allowing a broader scope of consideration. The presentation will draw on the work of Jung, von Franz, Hillman and Kalsched, and will be supplemented with tales from therapeutic experience.

Paul Gibney, Ph.D. is a psychotherapist and family therapist who has been in full-time private practice in Brisbane since 1988. His doctoral thesis (1993) focused on the theoretical relationship between psychoanalysis, systemic therapy, time in therapy, and the matter of context. His theoretical and academic interests and practical contributions to the field have been in the areas of brief therapy, systemic practice, Jungian psychotherapy and psychoanalytic thought. He has a deep interest in ‘everyday therapy’, and how to apply complex frameworks to the practical demands of the real world. He has consulted and supervised across a wide range of institutional settings. Paul worked as a psychiatric social worker for a decade in public practice and for ten years held a part-time senior lectureship, teaching Advanced Casework and Family Therapy in the Social Work Department at the University of Queensland. Paul currently provides consultation and professional supervision to agencies providing services in trauma recovery, child health, trans-cultural psychiatry, child protection and residential care. His current research interests are in the areas of professional supervision and developing personal frameworks for practice.


When the people who attended my workshop on The Nixie in the Millpond in November last year asked, “when is the next one?”, I was only too pleased to oblige. A discussion ensued as to which story to explore in more depth – perhaps a less obscure one? And Cinderella was decided upon. ‘Endearing and enduring’ versions of this story date back to at least 1634, when Giambattista Basile’s Il Pentamerone was published, maybe 1501 when it was mentioned in a sermon, or perhaps even as far back at the 9th Century in China, as a version was unearthed again in 1932. Cinderella shows up in many countries and cultures. She goes by different names too, such as Catskin, Cap O’ Rushes, Ashenputtl and She Hsien. Cinderella is so much more than a rags-to-riches story. In the description of Vol.3 of Marie Louise von Franz’s Collected Works, she says, “The maiden is the undeveloped feminine and the promised fruit of her struggle with the animus is the coniunctio”. In this workshop we will explore the better-known versions of Basile, Perrault and Grimm through a Jungian lens. So, you are invited to give yourself permission to take a few hours out of your busy schedule and join us in delving into the ancient story of Cinderella.

Pam Blamey is a retired art therapist and counsellor, having worked with couples, women survivors of Domestic Violence, people with drug and alcohol issues, adolescent girls in care, and refugees, as well as facilitating in writing retreats. Pam has been a committed member of the C. G. Jung Society of Queensland for many years, (as Secretary for eleven years), and has presented in Brisbane and Melbourne. Specialising in story and fairy tales in particular since 2008, she has run her own workshops, recorded stories online, presented to groups and conferences and published book chapters. Fairy tales remain a source of insight and delight.

For booking, please visit: https://jungqld.com/wp-content/uploads/2022/02/jung-qld-newsletter-feb-to-july-2022.pdf

C.G. Jung and Alchemy: the Philosopher’s Stone and the Journey of Individuation

The study and practice of alchemy in Europe lasted from early Christian times to the end of the 17th century. It was the forerunner of the science of chemistry and also an esoteric philosophy. Jung began collecting and studying original alchemical texts from about 1930 and his writings are peppered with allusions to alchemical terms like vas, nigredo, coniunctio, hierosgamos. He concluded that those who called themselves the Chemical Philosophers (as opposed to the charlatans) unconsciously intuited that the processes and stages in the alchemical opus were equivalent to stages in psychological transformation, while the goal of alchemy – gold, or the philosopher’s stone or the elixir of eternal life – was the equivalent of the goal of psychological transformation: the Self. Anne will give a brief outline of the nature of alchemy and explain Jung’s approach.

Australian by birth, Anne Di Lauro obtained a B.A. from the University of Queensland and a Post-graduate Diploma of Librarianship from the University of NSW. After a period working at the State Library of Queensland, she sailed away to see the world. She spent 32 years living overseas, working in library and information sciences for international organisations in Italy, Geneva, Paris and New York, as well as for national institutions in the UK and Canada. Having become an avid student of Jungian psychology, on her return to Australia she obtained a Master of Counselling from Queensland University of Technology and combined this qualification with her knowledge of Jungian psychology to enter private practice as a Jungian-oriented psychotherapist in Brisbane. She retired at the end of 2018.

Anne served on the committee of the C.G. Jung Society of Queensland for 15 years, including a period as president. She has given talks to our Society on a variety of subjects including Pinocchio and the Hero’s Journey, James Hillman and the Renaissance, Alchemy, Marie-Louise von Franz, Jung and the East, Jung and Pauli, The Nature of the Psyche according to Jung and, most recently The Use of Dreams in Psychotherapy.

Suburban Gothic and the Sublime Divine

"Often the hands will solve a mystery that the intellect has struggled with in vain."
  — C. G. Jung

Artist Tanja Stark will host an interactive conversation spiralling around the archetypal symbolism and themes that have emerged in both the form and the processes around her art practice. Across a range of media, including clay, bark, and metal, her iconography explores the mysterious dimensions of the psyche, and the dynamic interplay between the destructive and creative, the visceral and cerebral, and the numinous. Jung believed the recurring mythopoeic symbolism, imagery and narratives found across cultures in art, myth and religion drew from the powerful energies of the collective unconscious. Manifesting through dreams, visions, art, intuitions, spiritual experiences and synchronicities, active attention to these expressions could provide pathways to greater integration and wholeness, while unhealthy repression, denial or unbalanced inflation of unconscious energies could result in pathology, illness and psychological disintegration. Artists, he felt, had a particularly unique and complex role in this process. “Every creative person… is a duality or a synthesis of contradictory aptitudes… Art is a kind of innate drive that seizes a human being and makes him its instrument… There are hardly any exceptions to the rule that a person must pay dearly for the divine gift of the creative fire” C.G. Jung

This evening offers an opportunities to playfully explore some of the curious and synchronistic stories around the creation of Tanja’s work, and some broader ideas around the role of the arts in culture, in a relaxed end of year celebration.

Tanja Stark is intrigued by interplay between the arts, psychology, philosophy, and spirituality. She has worked as a social worker and counsellor, in research, writing and the arts and is a contributing author to books on contemporary culture and creativity by Routledge and Bloomsbury Press. She maintains fulltime art practice from her studio in Brisbane’s western suburbs.

Meaningful Coincidence in Fiction and Anecdote

While coincidences in fiction are everywhere, especially in how storylines are constructed, they are less common when it comes to depicting the potentially life-changing experiences of synchronicity, the term coined by C. G. Jung for meaningful coincidences. One author, however, who made regular use of synchronistic events in his work was the popular novelist and short story writer Paul Gallico, and examples from his stories will be given in this presentation. Juxtaposed against meaningful coincidences in fiction are those to be found in anecdotes arising out of actual events. These are generally short depictions which, unlike much of fiction, get straight to the point and can be very striking indeed. It is perhaps unfair to compare the two genres as they are distinct, though not entirely so—especially when it comes to the short stories of Isaac Bashevis Singer, many of which seem to dwell at the intersection of the two.

Also mentioned in this talk is the ‘trickster’ figure, found the world over in myths and legends. Synchronistic events commonly have a trickster quality about them: a shock of the unexpected and a revelation of direct insight in the face of paradox. One fascinating example is Eshu, a trickster deity from the Yoruba of West Africa, who is described by Robert Pelton, author of The Trickster in West Africa, as ‘pure synchronicity’.

Laurence Browne has a PhD in Philosophy from the University of Queensland, where he is an Honorary Research Fellow within the School of Historical and Philosophical Inquiry. He is the author of The Many Faces of Coincidence, published in 2017 by Imprint Academic, Exeter, U.K.