Blut und Boden

© Copyright Peter Crawford 2015
'Blut und Boden' refers to an ideology that focuses on ethnicity based on two factors, descent blood (of a Volk) and the land.
It celebrates the relationship of a people to the land they occupy and cultivate, and it places the highest value on the virtues of rural living.
The German expression was coined in the late 19th century, in tracts espousing racialism and nationalist romanticism.
It produced a regionalist literature, with some social criticism.

Wilhelm Heinrich Riehl
Ernst Moritz Arndt
This romantic attachment was widespread prior to the Third Reich.
Major figures in 19th-century German agrarian romanticism included Ernst Moritz Arndt and Wilhelm Heinrich Riehl, who argued that the peasantry represented the foundation of the German people and conservatism.
Ultranationalists predating the National Socialism often supported rural living as more healthy, with the 'Artaman League' sending urban children to the countryside to work in part in hopes of transforming them into 'Wehrbauern' (warrior farmers).

© Copyright Peter Crawford 2015
Die Artamanen-Gesellschaft
The Artamanen-Gesellschaft was a German agrarian and völkisch movement dedicated to a 'Blood and Soil' inspired ruralism. Active during the inter-war period, the League became closely linked to, and eventually absorbed by, the NSDAP. The term Artamanen had been coined before the First World War by Dr. Willibald Hentschel, a believer in racial purity, who had founded his own group, the 'Mittgart Society', in 1906. The term was a portmanteau word of 'art' and 'manen', Middle High German words meaning 'agriculture man', and indicating Hentschell's desire to see Germans move from the decadence of the city in order to return to an idyllic rural existence. The Artaman League had its roots in the overall 'Lebensreform' movement in late 19th-century and early 20th-century Germany. 
The 'Lebenreform' movement encompassed hundreds of groups throughout Germany that were involved in various experiments tied to ecology, health, fitness, vegetarianism, and naturism (Nacktkultur). Publications by right wing Lebensreformists, which sold in the tens of thousands, argued that their practices were "the means by which the German race would regenerate itself and ultimately prevail over its neighbors and the diabolical Jews who were intent on injecting putrefying agents into the nation's blood and soil". The society itself was not formed until 1923, even though Willibald's ideas were somewhat older. The Artamans were part of the 'German Youth Movement', representing its more right-wing back-to-the-land elements. Under the leadership of Georg Kenstler they advocated 'blood and soil' policies, with a strong undercurrent of Anti-Slavism. This völkisch movement believed that the decline of the Aryan race could only be halted by encouraging people to abandon city life in favor of settling in the rural areas in the east. Whilst members wished to perform agricultural labor as an alternative to military service, they also saw it as part of their duty to oppose Slavs and to remove them Germany.
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The concepts were combined in the figure of the 'Wehrbauer', or soldier-peasant. As such the League sent German youth to work on the land in Saxony and East Prussia in an attempt to prevent these areas being settled by Poles. To this end 2000 settlers were sent to Saxony in 1924 to both work on farms and serve as an anti-Slav militia. They also gave classes on importance of racial purity and the Nordic race, and the corrupting influence of city living and Jews. Like many similar right-wing youth movements in Germany the Artaman League lost impetus with the growth of the NSDAP. By 1927, 80% of its membership had become National Socialists. As such the League had disappeared by the early 1930s, with most of its membership having switched to the NSDAP. As the situation deteriorated in the late 1920s, some of the Artamans were drawn deeper into politics, opposing liberals, democrats, Free-Masons and Jews. Eventually many members of the Artaman League turned to National Socialism. 
Heinrich Himmler was an early member, and held the position of Gauführer in Bavaria. Whilst a member of the League Himmler met Richard Walther Darré, and the two struck up a close friendship, based largely on Darré's highly developed ideological notions of 'blood and soil' to which Himmler was attracted. The Artaman vision would continue to have a profound effect on Himmler who, throughout his time as Reichsführer-SS, retained his early dreams of a racially pure peasantry. Himmler was also close to his fellow member Rudolf Höss, and would later advance him in the Schutzstaffel due in part to their history in the Artaman League. The small league was dismantled and incorporated into the Hitler Jugend in October 1934 as the National Socialist youth movement gained strength.
Richard Walther Darré (see above) popularized the phrase 'Blut und Boden', writing a book called 'Neuadel aus Blut und Boden' (A New Nobility Based On Blood And Soil) in 1930, which proposed a systemic eugenics program, arguing for breeding as a cure for the many problems plaguing the state.
Darré was an influential member of the NSDAP, and a noted race theorist who assisted the party greatly in gaining support among common Germans outside the cities.

Richard Walther Darré
Richard Walther Darré (14 July 1895 – 5 September 1953), was a leading"blood and soil" ideologists, and served as 'Reichsminister für Ernährung und Landwirtschaft' from 1933 to 1942. He was an SS-Obergruppenführer and the seventh most senior officer of the SS. In 1945 Darré was the senior most SS-Obergruppenführer, with date of rank from 9 November 1934, outranked only by Heinrich Himmler and the four SS-Oberst-Gruppenführer. Darré was born in Belgrano, a Buenos Aires neighborhood, in Argentina to Richard Oscar Darré, a German with Huguenot ancestry, (born 10 March 1854, Berlin; died 20 February 1929, Wiesbaden) and the half-Swedish/half-German Emilia Berta Eleonore, née Lagergren (born 23 July 1872, Buenos Aires; died 20 July 1936, Bad Pyrmont). His father moved to Argentina in 1888 as a partner of the German international import/export wholesaler Engelbert Hardt & Co. The family lived prosperously, and educated their children privately until they were forced to return to Germany as a result of worsening international relations in the years preceding World War I. Darré gained fluency in four languages: Spanish, German, English, and French. Darré's parents sent him to Germany at age nine to attend school in Heidelberg; in 1911 he attended as an exchange pupil King's College School in Wimbledon. The rest of the family returned to Germany in 1912. Richard (as he was known in the family) then spent two years at the Oberrealschule in Gummersbach, followed in early 1914 by the Kolonialschule for resettlement in the German colonies at Witzenhausen, south of Göttingen, which awakened his interest in farming. After a single term at Witzenhausen, he volunteered for army service. He was lightly wounded a number of times while serving during World War I, but fared better than most of his contemporaries. When the war ended he returned to Witzenhausen to continue his studies. He then obtained unpaid work as a farm assistant in Pomerania: his observation of the treatment of returning German soldiers there influenced his later writings. In 1922 he moved to the University of Halle to continue his studies: here he took an agricultural degree, specializing in animal breeding. He did not complete his PhD studies until 1929, at the comparatively mature age of 34. During these years he spent some time working in East Prussia and Finland. He married twice. In 1922 he married Alma Staadt, a schoolfriend of his sister Ilse. He divorced Alma in 1927, and subsequently married Charlotte Freiin von Vittinghoff-Schell, who survived him. The first marriage produced two daughters. As a young man in Germany, Darré initially joined the Artaman League. In this organisation he began to develop the idea of the linkage between the future of the Nordic race and the soil: the tendency which became known as "Blut und Boden". The essence of the theory involved the mutual and long-term relationship between a people and the land that it occupies and cultivates. Darré's first political article (1926) discussed Internal Colonization, and argued against Germany attempting to regain the lost colonies in Africa. Most of his writing at this time, however, concentrated on technical aspects of animal breeding. He wrote his first book, 'Das Bauerntum als Lebensquell der nordischen Rasse' ('Peasantry as the life-source of the Nordic Race'), in 1928. It asserted that German farms had previously been bestowed on one son, the strongest, ensuring the best were farmers, but partible inheritance had destroyed that. Darré demanded the restoration of the ancient tradition, as well as serious efforts to restore the purity of Nordic blood, including exterminating the sick and impure.  Darré's writing is an early example of 'Green' or 'Conservationist' thinking: he advocated more natural methods of land management, placing emphasis on the conservation of forests, and demanded more open-space and air in the raising of farm animals. Those who heard and heeded Darré's arguments included Heinrich Himmler, himself one of the Artamans. Darré's work also glorified "peasant virtues" – as found in the remnants of the Nordics who lived in the country – and disparaged city living. In his two major works, he defined the German peasantry as a homogeneous racial group of Nordic antecedents, who formed the cultural and racial core of the German nation. Since the Nordic birth-rate was lower than that of other races, the Nordic race was under a long-term threat of extinction. 
Paul Schultze-Naumburg
In July 1930, after Paul Schultze-Naumburg had introduced him to Adolf Hitler, Darré joined the NSDAP and the SS. Darré's NSDAP number was 248,256 and his SS number was 6,882. Darré went on to become an active Reichsleiter, and to set up an agrarian political apparatus to recruit farmers into the party. Darré saw three main roles for this apparatus: to exploit unrest in the countryside as a weapon against the urban government; to win over the peasants as staunch National Socialist supporters; to gain a constituency of people who could be used as settlers to displace the Slavs in future conquests in the East. The German historian Klaus Hildebrand described Darré together with Himmler and Alfred Rosenberg as one of the leaders of the "agrarian" fraction within the NSDAP who championed 'anti-industrial' and 'anti-urban' "blood and soil" ideology, expansion into Eastern Europe to win 'Lebensraum', an alliance with Great Britain to defeat the Soviet Union, and staunch opposition to restoring the pre-1914 German colonial empire. The "agrarian" fraction took the view that Wilhelmine imperialism had taken Germany in the wrong direction, by colonizing lands that were unsuitable for mass colonization by German settlers, and had unwisely antagonized Britain. The lesson that the völkisch "agrarians" drew from the Second Reich was that Germany must restrict its ambitions to the continent of Europe in order to win an alliance with Britain, and land suitable for German colonization. 
Odal Rune - RuSHA Emblem
On 1 January 1932, Reichsführer-SS Himmler appointed Darré chief of the newly established SS Rasse und Siedlungshauptamt or RuSHA). Darré was given the rank of SS-Gruppenführer. The RuSHA was a department which implemented racial policies and was concerned with the racial integrity of the members of the SS. 
German National People's Party
During the 1932 presidential election, Darré engaged in a campaign against Theodor Duesterberg, the candidate of the conservative German National People's Party, who it emerged during the campaign was the grandson of a Jewish convert to Lutheranism. Duesterberg took up his dispute with Darré before the court of honor of the Former Officers of the 1st Hanoverian Field Artillery Regiment of Scharnhorst, number 10 to which Darré belonged to. The court of honor ruled in Darré's favor. In his religious views, Dárre would belong to the 'Pagan' faction within the Nazi movement, however, unlike Heinrich Himmler and Alfred Rosenberg, he has not become a figure of interest in the speculation about Nazi occultism. Darré's works were primarily concerned with the ancient and present Nordic peasantry (the ideology of 'Blood and Soil'): within this context, he made an explicit attack against Christianity. In his two main works ('Das Bauerntum als Lebensquell der Nordischen Rasse', Munich, 1927 and 'Neuadel aus Blut und Boden', Munich, 1930), Darré accused Christianity, with its "teaching of the equality of men before God," of having "deprived the Teutonic nobility of its moral foundations", the "innate sense of superiority over the nomadic tribes". In June 1933, he became Reichsminister für Ernährung und Landwirtschaft, succeeding DNVP leader Alfred Hugenberg, who had resigned. He was also named Reichsbauernführer (usually translated as Reich Peasant Leader, though the word Bauer also denotes Farmer). Darré was instrumental in founding the Reichsnährstand as part of the Gleichschaltung process. Darré campaigned for big landowners to part with some of their land to create new farms, and promoted the controversial Reichserbhofgesetz. He also converted most of the country's small farms into hereditary estates that were to be passed from father to son under the ancient laws of entailment. 
Günther Pancke
He developed a plan for "Rasse und Raum" ("race and space", or territory) which provided the ideological background for the National Socialist expansive policy on behalf of the "Drang nach Osten" ("Drive to the east") and of the "Lebensraum" ("Living space") theory expounded in Hitler's 'Mein Kampf'. Darré strongly influenced Himmler in his goal to create a German racial aristocracy based on selective breeding. In the course of the preparations for the Generalplan Ost, Himmler would later break with Darré, whom he saw as too theoretical. By September 1938, Himmler was already demanding that Darré step down as leader of the RuSHA in favour of Günther Pancke. Darré finally had to resign as Reich Minister in 1942, ostensibly on health grounds, and was succeeded by his state secretary Herbert Backe. 
Prior to their ascension to power, National Socialists called for a return from the cities to the countryside.
This agrarian sentiment allowed opposition to both the middle class and the aristocracy, and presented the farmer as a superior figure beside the 'moral swamp' of the city.
The doctrine not only called for a "back to the land" approach, and re-adoption of rural values; it held that German land was bound mystically, to German blood.
Peasants were seen as völkisch cultural heroes, who held charge of German racial stock and German history - as when a memorial of a medieval peasant uprising was the occasion for a speech by Darré praising them as force and purifier of German history.
This would also lead them to understand the natural order better, and in the end, only the man who worked the land really possessed it.
Urban culture was decried as a weakness, "asphalt culture", that only the Führer's will could eliminate - sometimes as a code for Jewish influence.

© Copyright Peter Crawford 2015
Bückeberg Reichserntedankfest

Bückeberg Reichserntedankfest

The Reichsnährstand organized lectures, films and exhibitions, in order to instruct the German farmers with regard to the völkisch concept of 'blood and soil'.
It also organized spectacular events, such as the 'Reichserntedankfest', which was held on the Bückeberg, close to the city of Hamelin.

Adolf Hitler - Bückeberg Reichserntedankfest
These celebrations took place between 1933 to 1937, when more than a million people gathered in order to celebrate the harvest festival, and listen to speech delivered by Adolf Hitler.
To manage this number of participants a special arena, the 'Reichsthingplatz' (feldplatz), designed by Albert Speer, was built.
The site was intended to be one of the symbolically most important in the Third Reich.

Bückeberg Reichserntedankfest
Adolf Hitler - Bückeberg

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Goslar Reichsbauerntag

Wappen Goslar
Reichsbauerntag - Goslar
In addition to the Reichserntedankfest there was also a Reichsbauerntag held in Goslar.
By receiving the designation 'Reich Bauernstadt', the old imperial city of Goslar became the center of agriculture, and agricultural self-administration.
The Reichsbauerntag showed that the 'Reich Bauernstadt' had established a good tradition, which came to expression in the strong participation of the population in the work of the Reichsnährstand.
For the first time, the concept of Reich Bauernstadt, Goslar, as the center of 'Nordic-German' farming, of the state idea of 'blood and soil', reached far beyond the Reich borders, drawing the attention of many states and peoples throughout the world.

Walther Darré - Goslar
The Reichsbauerntag was thus not only a German gathering in a narrow sense, but rather its form and spiritual aims it was an event of international significance.
There were two primary themes that marked the Reich Farmers’ Rally in 1936:

  • an uncompromising declaration of war against Jewish world Bolshevism,
  • and an indomitable will to self-assertion and national independence.

In his opening remarks at the Goslar City Hall, Darré gave the assembled leadership corps the inspiring command: 'Agriculture to the front'.

Neues Volk

'Blut und Boden' also contributed to the völkisch ideal of a woman: a sturdy peasant, who worked the land and bore strong children, contributing to praise for athletic women tanned by outdoor work.That country women gave birth to more children than city ones also was a factor in the support.
Carl Schmitt argued that a people would develop laws appropriate to its "blood and soil" because authenticity required loyalty to the Volk over abstract universals.
'Neues Volk' displayed demographic charts to deplore the destruction of the generous Aryan families' farmland, and how the Jews were eradicating traditional German peasantry.

'Neues Volk' was the monthly publication of the Office of Racial Policy in Nazi Germany. Founded by Walter Gross in 1933, it was a mass-market, illustrated magazine. It aimed at a wide audience, achieving a circulation of 300,000. It appeared in physicians' waiting rooms, libraries, and schools, as well as in private homes. Its subject matter was the excellence  of the Aryan race and the deficiencies of Jews, Poles, and other groups. Articles ranged from profiles of Mussolini, reports on Hitler Youth camps, and travel tips, but eugenic and racial propaganda continued throughout it. The first six issues presented solely ethnic pride, before bringing up any topic on "undesirables." In the next issue, one article presented the types of the "Criminal Jew" surrounded by images of the ideal Aryan, which generally predominated. Such articles continued, showing such things as demographic charts showing the decline of farmland (with generous Aryan families) and deploring that the Jews were eradicating traditional German peasantry. (see above) It included articles defending eugenic sterilization. Photographs of mentally incapacitated children were juxtaposed with those of healthy children. It also presented images of ideal Aryan families and condemned childless couples. By the mid-1930s, it had doubled its pages. Other articles described the conditions under which Hitler would be a child's godfather, discussed the importance of giving children Germanic names, answered racial questions from readers. During the war, it published articles about how the foreign workers were welcome but sexual relations with Germans was prohibited.
Posters for schools depicted, and deplored, the flight of people from the countryside to the city.
The German National Catechism, a pamphlet widely used in schools, also recounted how farmers lost ancestral lands and had to move to the city, with all its demoralizing effects. 
Jews in Vienna
'How has the Jew subjugated the peoples ? With money. He lent them money and made them pay interest. Thousands and thousands of Germans have been made wretched by the Jews and been reduced to poverty. Farmers whose land had been in the family for more than 100 years were driven from their land because they could not pay the interest. What happened to those farmers ? They had to move to the cities. Torn from the land to which they belonged, robbed of their labour that gave their lives purpose and meaning, they fell victim to poverty and misery. Worn down, their souls crushed, they accepted Jewish doctrines that denied the Fatherland and opposed all that was nationalistic. Their strength and ability faded. The Jew had reached his goal.
 Gottfried Feder
The program received far more ideological and propaganda support than concrete changes.
When Gottfried Feder tried to settle workers in villages about decentralized factories, generals and Junkers successfully opposed him.
Generals objected because it interfered with rearmament, and Junkers because it would prevent their exploiting their estates for the international market.
It would also require the breakup of Junker estates for independent farmers, which was not implemented.

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The Reichserbhofgesetz, (see above) the 'State Hereditary Farm Law' of 1933, implemented this ideology, stating that its aim was to: "preserve the farming community as the blood-source of the German people" (Das Bauerntum als Blutquelle des deutschen Volkes erhalten).
Selected lands were declared hereditary, and could not be mortgaged or alienated, and only these farmers were entitled to call themselves Bauern or "farmer peasant", a term the National Socialists attempted to refurbish from a neutral or even pejorative to a positive term.
Regional custom was only allowed to decide whether the eldest or the youngest son was to be the heir.
In areas where no particular custom prevailed, the youngest son was to be the heir. Still, the eldest son inherited the farm in most cases during the Third Reich.
Priority was given to the patriline, so that if there were no sons, the brothers and brothers' sons of the deceased peasant had precedence over the peasant's own daughters. 
The Reichserbhofgesetz also prevented Jews from farming: "Only those of German blood may be farmers."

Hitler Youth - Land Service
The concept was a factor in the requirement of a year of land service for members of Hitler Youth and the League of German Girls.
This period of compulsory service was required after completion of a student's basic education, before he or she could engage in advanced studies or become employed. 
Although working on a farm was not the only approved form of service, it was a common one; the aim was to bring young people back from the cities, in the hope that they would then stay "on the land".
In 1942, 600,000 boys and 1.4 million girls were sent to help bringing in the harvest.
'Blood and Soil' was one of the foundations of the concept of 'Lebensraum', "living space".
By expanding eastward and transforming those lands into breadbaskets, another blockade, such as that of World War I, would not cause massive food shortages, as that one had, a factor that aided the resonance of "Blood and Soil" for the German population.
Even Alfred Rosenberg, not hostile to the Slavs as such, regarded their removal from this land, where Germans had once lived, as necessary because of the unity of blood and soil.
Hitler's 'Mein Kampf' prescribed as the unvarying aim of foreign policy the necessity of obtaining land and soil for the German people.
While discussing the question of 'Lebensraum' to the east, Hitler envisioned a Ukrainian "breadbasket", and expressed particular hostility to its "Russian" cities as hotbeds of Slavism and Communism, forbidding Germans to live in them and declaring that they should be destroyed in the war.
Even during the war itself, Hitler gave orders that Leningrad was to be razed with no consideration given for the survival and feeding of its population.
This also called for industry to die off in these regions.
The 'Wehrbauer', or soldier-peasants, who were to settle there were not to marry townswomen, but only peasant women who had not lived in towns.
This would also encourage large families.
Furthermore, this land, held by "tough peasant races" would serve as a bulwark against attack from Asia.

The Influence of 'Blut und Boden' on Art


Prior to the National Socialist take-over, two popular genres were the 'Heimat-Roman', or regional novel, and 'Schollen-Roman', or novel of the soil, which was also known as Blut-und-Boden.
This literature was vastly increased.
It also combined war literature, with the figure of the soldier-peasant, uncontaminated by the city.
These books were generally set in the nominal past, but their invocation of the passing of the seasons often gave them an air of timelessness.
"Blood and Soil" novels and theater celebrated the farmer's life and human fertility, often mystically linking them.

 'Der Giftpilz'
In the children's book 'Der Giftpilz' it was stated that the Talmud described farming as the most lowly of occupations.
It also included an account of a Jewish financier forcing a German to sell his farm as seen by a neighbor boy; deeply distressed, the boy resolved never to let a Jew into his house, for which his father praised him, on the grounds that peasants must remember that Jews will always take their land.

Fine Art

Albin Egger Lienz - Bergmäher
During the Third Reich, one of the charges put forward against certain works of art was that "Art must not be isolated from blood and soil."
Failure to meet this standard resulted in the attachment of the label, 'entartete Kunst' (degenerate art), to offending pieces.

Hans Toepper - Erbhofbauer
In National Socialist art, both landscape paintings and figures reflected Blood-and-Soil ideology.
Indeed, some National Socialist art exhibits were explicitly titled "Blood and Soil".
Artists frequently gave otherwise apolitical paintings such titles as "German Land" or "German Oak".

Rural themes were heavily favored in painting.
Landscape paintings were featured most heavily in the Großdeutschen Kunstausstellungen.
While drawing on German romantic traditions, painted landscapes were expected to be firmly based on real landscapes, the German people's 'Lebensraum', without religious overtones.

Adolf Wissel - Bauernfamilie
Peasants were also popular images, promoting a simple life in harmony with nature.
This art showed little or no sign of the mechanization of farm work.
The farmer labored by hand, with effort and struggle.
The acceptance of this art by the peasant family was also regarded as an important element.


'Blut und Boden' films likewise stressed the commonality of Germanness, and the countryside.
'Die goldene Stadt' has the heroine running away to the city, resulting in her pregnancy and abandonment; she drowns herself, and her last words beg her father to forgive her for not loving the countryside as he did.

'Ewiger Wald'
The documentary 'Ewiger Wald' (The Eternal Forest) depicted the forest as being beyond the vicissitudes of history, and the German people the same because they were rooted in the story; it depicted the forest sheltering ancient Germans, Arminius, and the Teutonic Knights, facing the peasants wars, being chopped up by war and industry, and being humiliated by occupation with black soldiers, but culminated in a neo-pagan May Day celebration.

'Ewiger Wald'  
Commissioned by Alfred Rosenberg's cultural organization Militant League for German Culture in 1934 under the working title 'Deutscher Wald–Deutsches Schicksal' (German Forest–German Destiny), the feature-length movie premiered in Munich in 1936. Intended as a cinematic proof for the shared destiny of the German woods and the German people beyond the vicissitudes of history, it portrayed a perfect symbiosis of an eternal forest and a likewise eternal people firmly rooted in it between Neolithic and National Socialist times.In accordance with Rosenberg's anti-Christian beliefs, the first section on prehistory displayed various customs and rituals of an asserted pagan forest religion like a maypole dance or funerals in treetrunk coffins. Further, it depicted the forest sheltering ancient Germanic tribes, Arminius, and the Teutonic Knights, facing the German Peasants' War, being chopped up by war and industry, and being humiliated by black soldiers from the French occupation army. The years of the Weimar Republic appeared to be disastrous for people and forest alike to legitimize the assumption of power and thus the film culminated in a National Socialist May Day celebration filmed at the Berlin Lustgarten.
In 'Die Reise nach Tilsit', the Polish seductress is an obvious product of "asphalt culture," but the virtuous German wife is a country dweller in traditional costume.

© Copyright Peter Crawford 2015
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Jung - Liberal Dreamer or Aryan Protagonist

'Liberale Träumer oder arischen Protagonist'

Carl Gustav Jung (26 July 1875 – 6 June 1961), often referred to as C. G. Jung, was a German-Swiss psychiatrist and psychotherapist who founded analytical psychology.
His work has been influential not only in psychiatry but also in philosophy, anthropology, archeology, literature, and religious studies.
He was a prolific writer, though many of his works were not published until after his death.

Carl Gustav Jung
The central concept of analytical psychology is individuation—the psychological process of integrating the opposites, including the conscious with the unconscious, while still maintaining their relative autonomy.
Jung considered individuation to be the central process of human development.
Jung created some of the best known psychological concepts, including the 'archetype', the 'collective unconscious', the 'complex', and 'synchronicity'.
The Myers-Briggs Type Indicator (MBTI), a popular psychometric instrument, has been developed from Jung's theory of psychological types.
Jung saw the human psyche as "by nature religious", and made this religiousness the focus of his explorations.
Jung is one of the best known contemporary contributors to dream analysis and symbolization.
Though he was a practicing clinician, and considered himself to be a scientist, much of his life's work was spent exploring tangential areas such as Eastern and Western philosophy, alchemy, astrology, and sociology, as well as literature and the arts.
Jung's interest in philosophy and the occult led many to view him as a mystic, although his ambition was to be seen as a man of science.
His influence on popular psychology, the "psychologization of religion",[ spirituality and the so called 'New Age Movement' has been immense.

Early Years - Childhood Family

Carl Gustav Jung[a] was born in Kesswil, in the Swiss canton of Thurgau, on 26 July 1875 as the fourth but only surviving child of Paul Achilles Jung and Emilie Preiswerk.

The family, however, were originally German - and spoke German.
Emilie Preiswerk was the youngest child of Samuel Preiswerk who was also Paul Achilles Jung's professor of Hebrew.
His father was a poor rural pastor in the Swiss Reformed Church while his mother came from a wealthy Swiss family.
When Jung was six months old his father was appointed to a more prosperous parish in Laufen.
Meanwhile the tension between his parents was growing.
Emilie Jung was an eccentric and depressed woman who spent much of her time in her own separate bedroom enthralled by the spirits that she said visited her at night.
Jung had a better relationship with his father due to his mother's eccentricities.
Although normal during the day, Jung said that at night his mother became strange and mysterious.
Jung said that one night he saw a faintly luminous and indefinite figure coming from her room with a head detached from the neck and floating in the air in front of the body. 
Jung's mother left Laufen for several months of hospitalization near Basel for an unknown physical ailment.
Jung was taken by his father to live with Emilie Jung's unmarried sister in Basel but was later brought back to his father's residence.
Emilie Jung's continuing bouts of absence and often depressed mood influenced her son's attitude towards women — one of "innate unreliability".
This was a view that he later called the "handicap I started off with" and that resulted in his sometimes patriarchal views of women.
After three years of living in Laufen Paul Jung requested a transfer and was called to Kleinhüningen in 1879.
The relocation brought Emilie Jung in closer contact to her family and lifted her melancholy and despondent mood.

Childhood Memories

Jung was a solitary and introverted child, and was convinced from childhood that, like his mother, he had two personalities or identities - a modern Swiss citizen, and a personality more suited to the nineteenth century.
"Personality Number 1," as he termed it, was a typical schoolboy living in the era of the time. "Personality Number 2" was a dignified, authoritative and influential man from the past.
Although Jung was close to both parents he was disappointed by his father's academic approach to faith.
A number of childhood memories made lifelong impressions on him.
As a boy he carved a tiny mannequin into the end of the wooden ruler from his pencil case and placed it inside the case.
He then added a stone which he had painted into upper and lower halves and hid the case in the attic.
Periodically he would come back to the mannequin often bringing tiny sheets of paper with messages inscribed on them in his own secret language.
He later reflected that this ceremonial act brought him a feeling of inner peace and security.
Years later he discovered similarities between this personal experience and the totems of native peoples such as the collection of soul-stones near Arlesheim or the tjurungas of Australia.
He concluded that his intuitive ceremonial act was an unconscious ritual that was practiced in a strikingly similar way in faraway locations that he, as a young boy, had no way of consciously knowing about.
His findings on psychological archetypes and the collective unconscious were inspired, in part, by these experiences.
At the age of twelve, and shortly before the end of his first year at the Humanistisches Gymnasium in Basel, he was pushed to the ground by another boy so hard that he was momentarily unconscious (Jung later recognized that the incident was his fault, indirectly).
A thought then came to him - "now you won't have to go to school any more."
From then on, whenever he walked to school or began homework, he fainted.
He remained at home for the next six months until he overheard his father speaking worriedly to a visitor of his future ability to support himself.
They suspected he had epilepsy.
Confronted with the reality of his family's poverty he realized the need for academic excellence.
He immediately went into his father's study and began poring over Latin grammar.
He fainted three more times but eventually overcame the urge and did not faint again. 
This event, Jung later recalled, "was when I learned what a neurosis is."

University Years 

Jung did not plan to study psychiatry since it was not considered prestigious at the time. 
But, studying a psychiatric textbook, he became very excited when he discovered that psychoses are personality diseases.
His interest was immediately captured - it combined the biological and the spiritual and was exactly what he was searching for.
In 1895 Jung studied medicine at the University of Basel.
In 1900 he began working in the Zurich psychiatric hospital Burghölzli with Eugen Bleuler. 
His dissertation, published in 1903, was titled "On the Psychology and Pathology of So-Called Occult Phenomena."
In 1906 he published 'Studies in Word Association', and later sent a copy of this book to Sigmund Freud, which led to a close six year friendship between them.
In 1912 Jung published 'Wandlungen und Symbole der Libido', (known in English as Psychology of the Unconscious), which resulted in a theoretical divergence between himself and Freud.
Consequently their friendship fractured - each stating that the other was unable to admit he could possibly be wrong.
After this falling-out Jung went through a pivotal and difficult psychological transformation which was exacerbated by news of the First World War.
Henri Ellenberger called Jung's experience a "creative illness", and compared it to Freud's period of, what he called, neurasthenia and hysteria.

Army Career

During World War I Jung was drafted as an army doctor and soon made Commandant of an internment camp for British officers and soldiers (Swiss neutrality obliged the Swiss to intern personnel from either side of the conflict who crossed their frontier to evade capture).
Jung worked to improve the conditions of soldiers stranded in neutral territory and encouraged them to attend university courses.


In 1903 Jung married Emma Rauschenbach who came from a wealthy family in Switzerland.
They had five children: Agathe, Gret, Franz, Marianne, and Helene.
The marriage lasted until Emma's death in 1955, but Jung engaged in open relationships with other women.
His extramarital relationships with patients and friends Sabina Spielrein and Toni Wolff were the most widely known.

Meeting Freud

Jung was thirty when he sent his Studies in Word Association to Sigmund Freud in Vienna in 1906.
The two men met for the first time the following year and Jung recalled the discussion between himself and Freud as interminable.
He recalled that they talked almost unceasingly for thirteen hours.
Six months later the then 50-year-old Freud sent a collection of his latest published essays to Jung in Zurich.
This marked the beginning of an intense correspondence and collaboration that lasted six years and ended in May 1913.
 At this time Jung resigned as the chairman of the International Psychoanalytical Association where he had been elected with Freud's support.
Jung and Freud influenced each other during the intellectually formative years of Jung's life.
Freud called Jung "his adopted eldest son, his crown prince and successor" (?).
As Freud was already fifty years old at their meeting, he was well beyond the formative years.

In 1906 psychology as a science was still in its early stages.
Burghölzli is the common name given for the psychiatric hospital of the University of Zürich, Switzerland. The hospital is located on "Burghölzli", a wooded hill in the district of Riesbach of southeastern Zürich. The former convent buildings of Predigerkirche Zürich were also used after the abolition of the monastery by the hospital.In 1898 Eugen Bleuler became director of the Burghölzli, where he would remain until 1927. The "Bleuler era" is considered the most illustrious period at the hospital, largely due to the advent of psychoanalysis, usage of Freudian psychiatric theories, and the creative work of Bleuler's assistant, Carl Gustav Jung. Bleuler was followed as director by Hans-Wolfgang Maier and afterwards by his son Manfred Bleuler.
Jung, who had become interested in psychiatry as a student by reading Psychopathia Sexualis by Richard von Krafft-Ebing, professor in Vienna, now worked as a doctor under the eminent psychiatrist Eugen Bleuler in Burghölzli, and became familiar with Freud's idea of the unconscious through Freud's 'Die Traumdeutung' (1899), and was a proponent of the new "psycho-analysis."
Paul Eugen Bleuler

Paul Eugen Bleuler (April 30, 1857 – July 15, 1939) was a German-Swiss psychiatrist and eugenicist, most notable for his contributions to the understanding of mental illness and for coining the terms "schizophrenia", "schizoid", "autism", and what Sigmund Freud called Bleuler's happily chosen term "ambivalence". Following his interest in hypnotism, Bleuler became interested in Sigmund Freud's work. He favorably reviewed Josef Breuer and Sigmund Freud's 'Studien über Hysterie'. Bleuler found Freud's movement to be over-dogmatic, and resigned from the International Psychoanalytic Association in 1911, writing to Freud that "this 'all or nothing' is in my opinion necessary for religious communities and useful for political parties...but for science I consider it harmful". Bleuler was known for his clinical observation and willingness to let symptoms speak for themselves, as well as for his skillful expository writings.
Sigmund Freud
At the time, Freud needed collaborators and pupils to validate and spread his ideas. 
Burghölzli was a renowned psychiatric clinic in Zurich at which Jung was a young doctor, whose research had already given him international recognition.
Jung de-emphasized the importance of sexual development, and focused on the collective unconscious: the part of unconscious that contains memories and ideas inherited from our ancestors.
While he did think that libido was an important source for personal growth, he, unlike Freud, believed that libido alone was not responsible for the formation of the core personality.

Journal Editor

In 1908, Jung became an editor of the newly founded 'Jahrbuch für psychoanalytische und psychopathologischen Forschung'.
The following year, Jung traveled with Freud and Sándor Ferenczi to the United States to speak about psychoanalysis and, in 1910, Jung became Chairman for Life of the International Psychoanalytical Association.
While Jung worked on his 'Wandlungen und Symbole der Libido', tensions grew between Freud and Jung, mostly due to their disagreements over the nature of libido and religion.
In 1912 these tensions came to a peak because Jung felt severely slighted after Freud visited his colleague Ludwig Binswanger in Kreuzlingen without paying him a visit in nearby Zurich, an incident Jung referred to as "the Kreuzlingen gesture".
Shortly thereafter, Jung again traveled to the United States, and gave the Fordham lectures, which were published as 'The Theory of Psychoanalysis' in 1912.
While they contain some remarks on Jung's dissenting view on the nature of libido, they represent largely a "psychoanalytical Jung", and not the theory Jung became famous for in the following decades.
In 1909 Jung and Freud traveled to the conference at Clark University.
The event was planned by psychologist G. Stanley Hall, and included twenty-seven distinguished psychiatrists, neurologists and psychologists.
It represented a watershed in the acceptance of psychoanalysis in North America.
This forged welcome links between Jung and influential Americans.
Jung returned to the United States the next year for a brief visit, and again for a six-week lecture series at Fordham University in 1912.

Last meetings with Freud

In November 1912, Jung and Freud met in Munich for a meeting among prominent colleagues to discuss psychoanalytical journals.
At a talk about a new psychoanalytic essay on Amenhotep IV, Jung expressed his views on how it related to actual conflicts in the psychoanalytic movement.
While Jung spoke, Freud suddenly fainted, and Jung carried him to a couch.
Jung and Freud personally met for the last time in September 1913 for the Fourth International Psychoanalytical Congress in Munich.
Jung gave a talk on psychological types, - the introverted and extraverted type in analytical psychology.
This constituted the introduction of some of the key concepts which came to distinguish Jung's work from Freud's in the next half century.

Mid-life Isolation - London 1913–14

Jung spoke at meetings of the Psycho-Medical Society in London in 1913 and 1914.
His travels were soon interrupted by the war, but his ideas continued to receive attention in England primarily through the efforts of Constance Long.
He translated and published the first English volume of his collected writings.

Das Rote Buch

In 1913, at the age of thirty-eight, Jung experienced a horrible "confrontation with the unconscious".
He saw visions and heard voices.
He worried at times that he was "menaced by a psychosis" or was "suffering from schizophrenia" - which he undoubtedly was - a probable recurrence of his childhood schizoid episodes..
He decided, however, that it was valuable experience and, in private, he (rather foolishly) induced hallucinations or, in his words, "active imaginations".
Biographers and critics, however, have disagreed as to whether these years in Jung's life should be seen as, "a creative illness, a period of introspection, a psychotic break, or simply madness."
Anthony Storr, reflecting on Jung's own judgment that he was "menaced by a psychosis" during this time, concluded that the period represented a psychotic episode.
Jung recorded everything he felt in small journals.

Das Rote Buch
He began to transcribe his notes into a large red leather-bound book (Das Rote Buch), on which he worked intermittently for sixteen years.
'Das Rote Buch' is a red leather-bound folio manuscript written between 1915 and about 1930. It recounts and comments upon the author’s imaginative experiences between 1913 and 1916, and is based on manuscripts first drafted by Jung in 1914-15 and 1917. Despite being nominated as the central work in Jung’s oeuvre, it was not published or made otherwise accessible for study until 2009. In October 2009, with cooperation of Jung's estate and after thirteen years of exhaustive editorial work by Sonu Shamdasani, The Red Book: 'Liber Novus' was published by W. W. Norton in a facsimile edition, complete with an English translation, a comprehensive introduction written by Shamdasani, three appendices, and over 1500 editorial notes. Editions and translations in several other languages soon followed. In December 2012, Norton additionally released a "Reader's Edition" of the work; this smaller format edition includes the complete translated text of The Red Book: 'Liber Novus' along with the introduction and notes prepared by Shamdasani, but it omits the facsimile reproduction of Jung's original calligraphic manuscript. While the work has in past years been descriptively called simply “The Red Book,” Jung did emboss a formal title on the spine of his leather-bound folio: he there titled the work 'Liber Novus' (the “New Book”). His manuscript is now increasingly cited as 'Liber Novus', and under this title implicitly includes draft material intended for but never finally transcribed into the red leather folio proper.
Jung left no posthumous instructions about the final disposition of what he called the "Red Book".
The book has been described as 'bombastic, baroque and like so much else about Carl Jung, a willful oddity, synched with an antediluvian and mystical reality.' 


In the following years Jung experienced considerable isolation in his professional life, exacerbated through World War I.
His 'Sieben Predigten zum Toten' (1917), can also be read as expression of the psychological conflicts which beset Jung around the age of forty after the break with Freud.

London - 1920–23

Constance Long arranged for him to deliver a seminar in Cornwall in 1920.
Another seminar was held in 1923, this one organized by Helton Godwin Baynes (known as Peter), and another in 1925.

USA - 1924–25

Jung made a more extensive trip westward in the winter of 1924–5, financed and organized by Fowler McCormick and George Porter.
Of particular value to Jung was a visit with Chief Mountain Lake of the Taos Pueblo near Taos, New Mexico.

East Africa

In October 1925, Jung embarked on his most ambitious expedition, the "Bugishu Psychological Expedition" to East Africa.
He was accompanied by Peter Baynes and an American associate, George Beckwith.
On the voyage to Africa, they became acquainted with an English woman named Ruth Bailey, who joined their safari a few weeks later.
The group traveled through Kenya and Uganda to the slopes of Mount Elgon, where Jung hoped to increase his understanding of "primitive psychology" through conversations with the culturally isolated residents of that area.
Later he concluded that the major insights he had gleaned had to do with himself and the European psychology in which he had been raised.

United States - 1936

Jung made another trip to America in 1936, giving lectures in New York and New England for his growing group of American followers.
He returned in 1937 to deliver the Terry Lectures, later published as Psychology and Religion, at Yale University.


In December 1937, Jung left Zurich again for an extensive tour of India with Fowler McCormick.
In India, he felt himself "under the direct influence of a foreign culture" for the first time.
In Africa, his conversations had been strictly limited by the language barrier, but in India he was able to converse extensively.
Hindu philosophy became an important element in his understanding of the role of symbolism and the life of the unconscious, though he avoided a meeting with Ramana Maharshi.
He described Ramana as being absorbed in ‘the self’, but admits to not understanding Ramana’s self-realisation or what he actually did do.
He also admits that his field of psychology is not competent in understanding the eastern insight of the atman ‘the self’.
Jung became seriously ill on this trip and endured two weeks of delirium in a Calcutta hospital.
After 1938, his travels were confined to Europe.

Last Publications and Death

Jung continued to publish books until the end of his life, including 'Flying Saucers: A Modern Myth of Things Seen in the Skies' (1959), which analyzed the archetypal meaning and possible psychological significance of the reported observations of UFOs.
He also enjoyed a friendship with an English Roman Catholic priest, Father Victor White, who corresponded with Jung after he had published his controversial 'Answer to Job'.
Jung died on 6 June 1961 at Küsnacht, after a short illness.


With regard to Adolf Hitler Jung stated that: 'Hitler seemed like the 'double' of a real person, as if Hitler the man might be hiding inside, and deliberately so concealed in order not to disturb the mechanism.... You know you could never talk to this man; because there is nobody there.... It is not an individual; it is an entire nation.'

This essay by Jung is included in order to show that the concept of psychic possession was considered a real possibility by one of the most astute academic minds of the time. 

Unfortunately, Jung did not have much of the information about Hitler that has since become available - and this may account for the fact that he was probably mistaken in his identification of Wotan as the entity that was responsible for the possession of Hitler, however, many of his insights into Hitler and his relationship with the German people are highly relevant and revealing.


Carl G Jung
Although Jung was a practicing clinician, and considered himself to be a scientist, much of his life's work was spent exploring tangential areas, including Eastern and Western philosophy, alchemy, astrology, and sociology, as well as literature and the arts.
His interest in philosophy and the occult led many to view him as a mystic.
With regard to Adolf Hitler Jung stated that:
'Hitler seemed like the 'double' of a real person, as if Hitler, 'the man', might be hiding inside, and deliberately so concealed in order not to disturb the mechanism.... You know you could never talk to this man; because there is nobody there.... It is not an individual; it is an entire nation.'
This essay by Jung is included in order to show that the concept of psychic possession was considered a real possibility by one of the most astute academic minds of the time.
Unfortunately, Jung did not have much of the information about Hitler that has since become available - and this may account for the fact that he was mistaken in his identification of Wotan as the entity that was responsible for the possession of Hitler, however, many of his insights into Hitler and his relationship with the German people are highly relevant and revealing.



The electrifying power of the swastika; Albert Speer’s dazzling lighting effects at the Nuremberg rallies; Hitler’s “demonic” oratory and his own 'deification' as the Führer; the romantic vision of a bucolic Germany rooted in “blood and soil,” as opposed to an urban, mechanical modernity - all were part of the myth of National Socialism.
Like the French syndicalist George Sorel and the political philosopher Leo Strauss, Hitler knew that in politics, myth is often more important than the “truth,” a difficult commodity to pin down at any time. Reason and rationality are boring and demand effort.

Georges Eugène Sorel (2 November 1847 – 29 August 1922) was a French philosopher and theorist of revolutionary syndicalism. His notion of the power of myth in people's lives inspired National Socialist theory. It is, together with his defence of violence, the contribution for which he is most often remembered.

Leo Strauss (September 20, 1899 – October 18, 1973) was a German–American political philosopher and classicist who specialized in classical political philosophy. He was born in Germany, and later emigrated to the United States. He spent most of his career as a professor of political science at the University of Chicago, where he taught several generations of students and published fifteen books.

Originally trained in the neo-Kantian tradition with Ernst Cassirer, and immersed in the work of the phenomenologists Edmund Husserl and Martin Heidegger, Strauss later focused his research on the Greek texts of Plato and Aristotle.

Myth bypasses the inhibitions of the critical mind, and reaches down to the vital, occult forces below.
This is what makes a myth exciting and enlivening.
It is also what makes it dangerous.

 C. G. Jung
Yet many at the time were willing to risk the danger and embrace myth over reason.
One was the Swiss psychologist C. G. Jung, perhaps more than anyone else, the single most important figure in the reawakening of spiritual thought in modern times.
Although for much of his career Jung obscured his interest in the occult, in his later years his writings on 'Gnosticism', alchemy, the paranormal, spiritualism, and even flying saucers brought these otherwise marginal areas into the field of respectable research.
Predictably, Jung’s occult inclinations led to criticisms of irrationalism.

Ludwig Klages
Like Ludwig Klages, Jung has been seen by many on the left as an exponent of völkisch ideas.

Ludwig Klages (10 December 1872 – 29 July 1956)  was a prominent German philosopher associated with the intellectual movement known as ‘vitalism’ (Biozentrismus).  He created a complete theory of graphology and will be long associated with the concepts of form level, rhythm and bi-polar interpretation. He is important because together with Nietzsche and Bergson he anticipated existential phenomenology. He also coined the term logocentrism in the 1920s.

The neo-Marxist philosopher Ernst Bloch, himself no stranger to Rosicrucianesque utopias, once described Jung as a “fascistically frothing psychoanalyst.”
Other neo-Marxist philosophers, like Theodor Adorno, likewise branded Jung a National Socialist.
The tag was perhaps first made seriously by the German-Jewish cultural philosopher Walter Benjamin, who, unlike Adorno, had some interest in occult ideas, specifically the 'Kabbalah' and graphology, a discipline he shared, ironically, with the Klages.
(Benjamin was also a close friend of the'Kabbalist' scholar Gershom Scholem, who, as mentioned, was an associate of Jung at the Eranos lectures.)

קַבָּלָה‎, literally "receiving/tradition"; also Romanised Cabala, Qabbālâ, etc. - is an esoteric method, discipline, and school of thought. A traditional Kabbalist in Judaism is called a Mekubal (Hebrew: מְקוּבָל‎).
Kabbalah's definition varies according to the tradition and aims of those following it, from its religious origin as an integral part of Judaism, to its later Christian, New Age, or Occultist syncretic adaptations. Kabbalah is a set of esoteric teachings meant to explain the relationship between an unchanging, eternal, and mysterious Ein Sof (the ONE) and the mortal and finite universe (God's creation). While it is heavily used by some denominations, it is not a religious denomination in itself. It forms the foundations of mystical religious interpretation. Kabbalah seeks to define the nature of the universe and the human being, the nature and purpose of existence, and various other ontological questions. It also presents methods to aid understanding of these concepts and thereby attain spiritual realisation.

Adorno, Bloch, and others saw Jung’s psychology as a simple celebration of the unconscious, a rejection of the rational, critical mind, in the same vein as the work of the more straightforward irrationalist Klages, whose ideas about Seele (soul) in opposition to Geist (spirit), they argue, helped prime the German psyche for Hitler.
It is a fact that Jung, like many others, at first believed that the creative potential of Germany might find fruitful expression through Hitler.
According to Jung’s psychology, the “shadow” side of the psyche, though associated with “evil,” can often be the source of “good,” of new life and transformation, and Jung reportedly spoke of the National Socialists as “a chaotic precondition for the birth of a new world,” a nod to Nietzsche’s remark that “One must have chaos within oneself to give birth to a dancing star.”
More recently, in his controversial work 'The Jung Cult', Richard Noll makes similar charges against Jung, arguing that in his early career the heir apparent to the throne of Freud immersed himself in the Aryan occult milieu of Munich and Ascona, as a devotee of völkisch beliefs who envisioned himself a kind of national savior.
Other works suggest that in his later career Jung was, while not a full-fledged party member, at least a kind of “fellow traveler”.
In the words of the novelist Thomas Mann, Jung was “always a half-Nazi.” 
Pronouncements on the “old” Jewish psyche and the “youthful” German one were bound to be misread in the dark days of the 1930s.
Likewise, Jung’s remark that the Jews seem “never to have created a cultural form of their own,” but require a “host nation,” would have been read in 1934 (when it was made) in one way only, that the Jew was a parasite, feeding off its Aryan host.

Reichmarshal Hermann Göring
Jung accepted the presidency of the General Society for Psychotherapy and editorship of its journal, the Zentralblatt für Psychotherapie - both based in Germany - at a time when they were moving inexorably toward being gleichgeschaltet, “conformed,” to National Socialist ideologies.
During Jung’s editorship of the Zentralblatt, Dr. M. H. Göring - a cousin of Reichmarshal Hermann Göring - who had been made president of the German Section of the Society, inserted a pro-Nazi statement of principles in an issue in 1933, recommending 'Mein Kampf' as a basic text for all psychotherapists, and urging all members to declare their loyalty to National Socialism.
But in a sense, Jung’s encounter with National Socialism is a red herring.
Whether he was inclined toward the NSDAP or not, like Schwaller de Lubicz, Jung was in many ways a 'man of the right, and like René Guénon, he had little love for the modern

René Adolphe Schwaller de Lubicz (1887 – 1961), born René Adolphe Schwaller in Alsace-Lorraine, was a French occultist, student of sacred geometry and Egyptologist, known for his twelve year study of the art and architecture of the Temple of Luxor in Egypt and his subsequent book 'The Temple In Man'. René Schwaller left home at the age of eighteen after having completed an apprenticeship with his father in pharmaceutical chemistry. Moving to Paris from Alsace to study modern chemistry and physics, he developed an interest in Alchemy, reading every alchemical text he could find including those by Paracelsus and Raymond Lull.
René Guénon

René Guénon (November 15, 1886 – January 7, 1951), was a French author and intellectual who remains an influential figure in the domain of metaphysics, having written on topics ranging from metaphysics, "sacred science" and traditional studies to symbolism and initiation.

In his writings, he proposes either "to expose directly some aspects of Eastern metaphysical doctrines", these doctrines being defined by him as of "universal character", or "to adapt these same doctrines for Western readers while keeping strictly faithful to their spirit"; he only endorsed the act of "handing down" these Eastern doctrines, while reiterating their "non-individual character".

Bollingen Turm
Jung's Home - Bollingen
He built his famous tower, Bollingen, on the shores of Lake Zurich so he could escape from modern banality, and immerse himself in older, mythic forms of consciousness.
He was notoriously disparaging of modern culture, and saw works like James Joyce’s Ulysses and Picasso’s paintings as indications of a psychic deterioration.
There was also an authoritarian streak in Jung which made him partial to individuals like Spain’s Francisco Franco. 
Like Joseph de Maistre and Saint-Yves d’Alveydre, Jung believed that anarchy must be avoided at all costs.
Writing in 1936, Jung argued that “the loss of any firm authority is gradually leading to an intellectual, political, and social anarchy, which is repugnant to the soul of European man, accustomed as he is to patriarchal order.”
Like Ouspensky, Jung believed that the state was “intellectually and ethically far below the level of most of the individuals in it,” yet he felt that modern man was increasingly moving toward some absorption in the mass.
One agent of this was the welfare state, which Jung saw as a “doubtful blessing” that “robs people of their individual responsibility and turns them into infants and sheep” and produces a collectivist society in which “the capable will simply be exploited by the irresponsible,” an argument often made by conservative politicians and right-wing thinkers.
Yet the welfare state was only one manifestation of the ills of modernity.
More disturbing was “the accumulation of urban, industrialized masses - of people torn from the soil, engaged in one-sided employment, and lacking every healthy instinct, even that of self-preservation,” an observation that could easily have been made by Julius Evola.
Against these trends, Jung offered his concept of individuation, the psychological process through which, in Nietzsche’s phrase, “one becomes what one is,” and which Jung saw as Western man’s only hope to avoid being absorbed in some homogeneous social mass, the “mass man” of modern times.
As Noll argues in his challenging work, it’s easy to see this as Jung’s own call for an elite; by Jung’s admission, individuation, while theoretically possible for everyone, is really embraced only by the few, although there is nothing to stop others from doing so, except inclination.
The echoes of Guénon and Schwaller are obvious, yet Jung’s individuation, like the psychologist Abraham Maslow’s self-actualizing, doesn’t call for some primordial tradition or temple knowledge, but for us to take on the responsibility of realizing our own personality and potential, which Jung called “an act of the greatest courage in the face of life.” 


Jung's ideas had "official approval" in the Third Reich, and, as a result, "German psychotherapists did all they could to link Jung's name with their own activities". 

Jung's work was in fact cited by German racial theoreticians and appeared in official German bibliographies of the period.
In an interview on Radio Berlin in 1933, Jung stated:
"As Hitler said recently, the Führer must be able to be alone and must have the courage to go his own way. But if he doesn't know himself, how is he to lead others ? That is why the true leader [Führer] is always one who has the courage to be himself, and can look not only others in the eye but above all himself.... Every movement culminates organically in a leader, who embodies in his whole being the meaning and purpose of the popular movement."
And in his paper, 'Der Zustand der Psychotherapie heute' ( 1934), Jung wrote:
"Freud did not understand the Germanic psyche any more than did his Germanic followers. Has the formidable phenomenon of National Socialism, on which the whole world gazes with astonishment, taught them better ? Where was that unparalleled tension and energy while as yet no National Socialism existed ? Deep in the Germanic psyche, in a pit that is anything but a garbage-bin of unrealizable infantile wishes and unresolved family resentments."
In the same paper, which clarifies the somewhat cryptic language above, Jung asserted (about Jews):
"The 'Aryan' unconscious has a higher potential than the Jewish. The Jew who is something of a nomad has never yet created a cultural form of his own and as far as we can see never will, since all his instincts and talents require a more or less civilized nation to act as host for their development. The Jews have this peculiarity with women; being physically weaker, they have to aim at the chinks in the armour of their adversary." 
Jung also warned against "applying Jewish categories indiscriminately to Germanic and Slavic Christendom".
A similar observation occurs in a footnote to the 'Zwei Aufsätze auf Analytische Psychologie', first published in 1928. and republished in 1935: "It is a quite unpardonable mistake to accept the conclusions of a Jewish psychology as generally valid".
In Zentralblatt editorial he wrote that "the differences which actually do exist between Germanic and Jewish psychology and which have been long known to every intelligent person are no longer to be glossed over."
In a letter to his pupil Dr Kranefeldt in 1934, Jung wrote:
"As is known, one cannot do anything against stupidity, but in this instance the Aryan people can point out that, with Freud and Adler, specifically Jewish points of view are publicly preached, and as can be proved likewise, points of view that have an essentially corrosive character."
Earlier, in 1918, Jung had written that the Jew..
"is badly at a loss for that quality in man which roots him to the earth and draws new strength from below. This chthonic quality is to be found in the German peoples.... The Jew has too little of this quality - where has he his own earth underfoot."
However, in the "Erwiderung auf Dr. Bally", Jung says: "I must confess my total inability to understand why it should be a crime to speak of Jewish psychology."
Jung also asserts that "psychological differences obtained between all nations and races."

Hitler regarded all history as consisting of struggles between competing nations for living space and, eventually, for world domination.
The Jews, according to Hitler, are a nation and participate in these struggles, but their goal, quite directly and in the first instance, is world domination.
This is because the Jews do not start off with possession of living space, of an identifiable, geographical locality; it has to be the world or nothing.
In fact, for Hitler, the nationalism of the Jews is really "de- nationalism, the bastardization of other nations".
The Jewish nation achieves its goal of world domination by denationalizing existing states from within, and imposing a homogeneous "Jewish" character on them by its inter-national capitalism, and its equally inter-national communism.
So, in Hitler's thinking, there is a struggle between wholesome nationhood and its corrupting; enemy, the Jews.
Jung, too, was interested in the idea of the nation, and he makes innumerable references to "the psychology of the nation" and to the influence of a person's national background.
He says that "the soil of every country holds a mystery.... There is a relationship of body to earth."
For example in 1918, Jung asserted that the skull and pelvis measurements of second-generation American immigrants were becoming "indianized".
It can be seen, however, that Jung was not thinking along purely racial lines, for the immigrants from Europe and the indigenous Indians come from different races.
No, living in America, living on American soil, being part of the American nation, these are what exert profound physiological and psychological effects. "The foreign land.. has assimilated the conqueror," says Jung, and his argument is not based simply on race, but on earth and culture, as the matrix from which we evolve.
Earth plus culture equals nation.
In C.G. Jung, nationalism found its psychologist.
But in his role as a psychologist of nationhood, his role as a psychologist who lends his authority to nationalism, Jung's pan-psychism (Jung's phrase) developed considerably.
This development refers to the tendency to see all outer events in terms of inner dynamics, and it led Jung to claim that the nation is a personified concept that corresponds in reality only to a specific nuance of the individual psyche. The nation is nothing but an inborn character.
It should be noted that there is no hard evidence that Jung's approach to the concept of nation is fundamentally metaphorical or "mythological".
To sum up - first, a crucial aspect of Hitler's thinking is that the Jews represent a threat to the inevitable and healthy struggle of different nations for world domination.
Second, - Jung's view is that each nation has a different, and identifiable national psychology that is, in some manner, an innate factor.
At first sight, juxtaposing these two points of view might seem innocuous, or pointless. 
But if we go on to explore the place of the Jews in Jung's mental ecology, to find out where they are situated in his view of the world, then the juxtaposition of the two points of view takes on a far more profound significance.
The ideas of nation, and of national difference form a fulcrum between the Hitlers thought, and Jung's analytical psychology.
For, as a psychologist of nations, Jung too would feel threatened by the Jews, this strange so-called nation without a land.
Jung, too, would feel threatened by the Jews, this strange nation without cultural forms - that is, without national cultural forms - of its own, and hence, in Jung's words of 1933, requiring a "host nation".
There is 'Jewish psychology', meaning the psychological characteristics, prejudices and assumptions of a "typical" Jewish person.
Jung argues that everybody is affected by their background and this leads to all kinds of prejudices and assumptions - "every child knows that differences exist" .
There is, however, a second use by Jung of this term "Jewish psychology".
It has another implication.
Here, he is referring to systems of psychology developed by Jews such as Freud and Adler, systems that claim universal applicability and truth.
Such a psychology is a "leveling psychology" (Jung's words), in that it undermines the idea that there are psychological differences between groups of peoples, such as nations.
Such a psychology is wrong to apply "Jewish categories . . . indiscriminately" and, Jung goes on to note, one should not make the "unpardonable mistake of accepting the conclusion of a Jewish psychology as generally valid".
Jung is saying that Jewish psychoanalysis attacks the idea of psychological differences between nations.
Jewish psychoanalysis therefore occupies a place in Jung's mind analogous to the place occupied in Hitler's mind by Jewish international capitalism, and Jewish international atheistic and materialist Communism.
The great fears are,respectively, "leveling" and "denationalizing".
Jung and Hitler do not say exactly the same things about the Jews, of course, but the leveling aim of Jewish psychology, and the denationalizing aim of Jewish political and economic activity, represents a similar kind of threat to each of them.
So each develops a similar kind of concern.
For Hitler, this takes the form of a concern with a Jewish "spirit", functioning as a 'pestilential bacillus', undermining the very idea of nation.
For Jung, this takes the form of an concern with a Jewish psychology, capable of being imposed on all other ethnic and national psychologies, bringing them all down to the same level.

© Copyright Peter Crawford 2012
© Copyright Peter Crawford 2012
Carl Gustav Jung

First published as 'Wotan, Neue Schweizer Rundschau' (Zurich). n.s. -  III March, 1936

Carl Gustav Jung
© Copyright Peter Crawford 2012
When we look back to the time before 1914, we find ourselves living in a world of events which would have been inconceivable before the war.
We were even beginning to regard war between civilized nations as a fable, thinking that such an absurdity would become less and less possible in our rational, internationally organized world.
And what came after the war was a veritable witches’ Sabbath.
Everywhere fantastic revolutions, violent alterations of the map, reversions in politics to medieval or even antique prototypes, totalitarian states that engulf their neighbours and outdo all previous theocracies in their absolutist claims, persecutions of Christians and Jews, wholesale political murder, and finally we have witnessed a light-hearted piratical raid on a peaceful, half-civilized people.
With such goings on in the wide world it is not in the least surprising that there should be equally curious manifestations on a smaller scale in other spheres.
In the realm of philosophy we shall have to wait some time before anyone is able to assess the kind of age that we are living in.
But in the sphere of religion we can see at once that some very significant things have been happening.
We need feel no surprise that in Russia the colourful splendours of the Eastern Orthodox Church have been superseded by the 'Movement of the Godless' – indeed, one breathed a sigh of relief oneself when one emerged from the haze of an Orthodox church with its multitude of lamps and entered an honest mosque, where the sublime and invisible omnipresence of God was not crowded out by a superfluity of sacred paraphernalia.
Tasteless and pitiably unintelligent as it is, and however deplorable the low spiritual level of the “Scientific” reaction, it was inevitable that nineteenth-century “scientific” enlightenment should one day dawn in Russia.
But what is more than curious – indeed, piquant to a degree – is that an ancient God of storm and frenzy, the long quiescent Wotan, should awake, like an extinct volcano, to new activity.

Wandervogel auf dem Berggipfel
Deutsch Jugendbewegung
We have seen him come to life in the 'German Youth Movement', and right at the beginning the blood of several sheep was shed in honour of his resurrection.
Armed with rucksack and lute, blond youths, and sometimes girls as well, were to be seen as restless wanderers on every road from North Cape to Sicily, faithful votaries of the roving god.
Later, towards the end of the Weimar Republic, the wandering role was taken over by thousands of unemployed, who were to be met with everywhere on their aimless journeys.

Wandervogel Jungen Camp
Nackt Wandervogel Jungen
By 1933 they wandered no longer, but marched in their hundreds of thousands.
The Hitler movement literally brought the whole of Germany to its feet, from five-year-olds to veterans, and produced a spectacle of a nation migrating from one place to another.
Wotan the wanderer was on the move.
He could be seen, looking rather shamefaced, in the meeting-house of a sect of simple folk in North Germany, disguised as Christ sitting on a white horse.
I do not know if these people were aware of Wotan’s ancient connection with the figures of Christ and Dionysus, but it is not very probable.
Wotan is a restless wanderer who creates unrest and stirs up strife, now here, now there, and works magic.

© Copyright Peter Crawford 2012
Franz von Stuck - 'Die Wilde Jagd'
He was soon changed by Christianity into the devil, and only lived on in fading local traditions as a ghostly hunter who was seen with his retinue, flickering like a will o’ the wisp through the stormy night.
The German youths who celebrated the solstice with sheep-sacrifices were not the first to hear the rustling in the primeval forest of unconsciousness.

Stefan George
They were anticipated by Nietzsche, Schuler, Stefan George, and Ludwig Klages.
The literary tradition of the Rhineland and the country south of the Main has a classical stamp that cannot easily be got rid of; every interpretation of intoxication and exuberance is apt to be taken back to classical models, to Dionysus, to the peur aeternus and the cosmogonic Eros.
No doubt it sounds better to academic ears to interpret these things as Dionysus, but Wotan might be a more correct interpretation.
He is the god of the storm and frenzy, the unleasher of passions and the lust of battle; moreover he is superlative magician and artist in illusion who is versed in all secrets of an occult nature. Nietzsche’s case is certainly a peculiar one.

Also Sprach Zarathustra
He had no knowledge of Germanic literature; he discovered the “cultural Philistine”; and the announcement that “God is dead” led to Zarathustra’s meeting with an unknown god in unexpected form, who approached him sometimes as an enemy and sometimes disguised as Zarathustra himself.
Zarathustra, too, was a soothsayer, a magician, and the storm-wind.
 'And like a wind shall I come to blow among them, and with my spirit shall take away the breath of their spirit; thus my future wills it. Truly, a strong wind is Zarathustra to all that are low; and this counsel gives he to his enemies and to all that spit and spew: “Beware of spitting against the wind.” And when Zarathustra dreamed that he was guardian of the graves in the “lone mountain forest of death,” and was making a mighty effort to open the gates, suddenly a roaring wind tore the gates asunder; whistling, shrieking, and keening, it cast a black coffin before me. And amid the roaring and whistling and shrieking the coffin burst open and spouted a thousand peals of laughter. The disciple who interpreted the dream said to Zarathustra: Are you not yourself the wind with shrill whistling, which bursts open the gates of the fortress of death? Are you not yourself the coffin filled with life’s gay malice and angel-grimaces ?'
In 1863 or 1864, in his poem:
'To the Unknown God', Nietzsche had written: 'I shall and will know thee, Unknown One, Who searchest out the depths of my soul, And blowest through my life like a storm, Ungraspable, and yet my kinsman! I shall and will know thee, and serve thee. Twenty years later, in his Mistral Song, he wrote: Mistral wind, chaser of clouds, Killer of gloom, sweeper of the skies, Raging storm-wind, how I love thee! Are we not both the first-fruits Of the same womb, forever predestined To the same fate ?'
In the dithyramb known as Ariadne’s Lament, Nietzsche is completely the victim of the hunter-god:
'Stretched out, shuddering, Like a half-dead thing whose feet are warmed, Shaken by unknown fevers, Shivering with piercing icy frost arrows Hunted by thee, O thought, Unutterable! Veiled! Horrible one! Thou huntsman behind the cloud. Struck down by thy lightening bolt, Thou mocking eye that stares at me from the dark! Thus I lie. Writhing, twisted, tormented With all eternal tortures. Smitten By thee, cruel huntsman, Thou unknown – God !'

Elizabeth Nietzsche
This remarkable image of the 'hunter-god' is not a mere dithyrambic figure of speech but is based on an experience which Nietzsche had when he was fifteen years old, at Pforta.
It is described in a book by Nietzsche’s sister, Elizabeth Foerster-Nietzsche.
As he was wandering in a gloomy wood at night, he was terrified by a “blood-curdling shriek from a neighbouring lunatic asylum,” and soon afterwards he came face to face with a huntsman whose “features were wild and uncanny.”
Setting his whistle to his lips “in a valley surrounded by wild scrub,” the huntsman “blew such as a shrill blast” that Nietzsche lost consciousness – but woke up again in Pforta.
It was a nightmare.
It is significant that in his dream Nietzsche, who in reality intended to go to Eisleben, Luther’s town, discussed with the huntsman the question of going instead to “Teutschenthal” (Valley of the Germans).

Reich ohne Raum
Richard Wagner
No one with ears can misunderstand the shrill whistling of the storm-god in the nocturnal wood.
Was it really only the classical philologist in Nietzsche that led to the god being called Dionysus instead of Wotan – or was it perhaps due to his fateful meeting with Wagner ?
In his 'Reich ohne Raum', which was first published in 1919, Bruno Goetz saw the secret of coming events in Germany in the form of a very strange vision.
I have never forgotten this little book, for it struck me at the time as a forecast of the German weather.
It anticipates the conflict between the realm of ideas and life, between Wotan’s dual nature as a god of storm and a god of secret musings.
Wotan disappeared when his oaks fell and appeared again when the Christian God proved too weak to save Christendom from fratricidal slaughter.
Arms of the Holy See
© Copyright Peter Crawford 2012
© Copyright Peter Crawford 2012
When the Holy Father at Rome could only impotently lament before God the fate of the grex segregatus (separated flock), the one-eyed old hunter, on the edge of the German forest, laughed and saddled Sleipnir.

In Norse mythology, Sleipnir  is an eight-legged horse. Sleipnir is attested in the Poetic Edda, compiled in the 13th century from earlier traditional sources, and the Prose Edda, written in the 13th century by Snorri Sturluson. In both sources, Sleipnir is Odin's steed, is the child of Loki and Svaðilfari, is described as the best of all horses, and is sometimes ridden to the location of Hel. The Prose Edda contains extended information regarding the circumstances of Sleipnir's birth, and details that he is grey in color.

We are always convinced that the modern world is a reasonable world, basing our opinion on economic, political, and psychological factors, but if we may forget for a moment and lay aside our well-meaning, all-too human reasonableness, may burden God or the gods with the responsibility for contemporary events instead of man, we would find Wotan quite suitable as a casual hypothesis.
In fact, I venture the heretical suggestion that the unfathomable depths of Wotan’s character explain more of Völkisch philosophy than all three reasonable factors put together.
There is no doubt that each of these factors explains an important aspect of what is going on in Germany, but Wotan explains yet more.
He is particularly enlightening in regard to a general phenomenon, which is so strange to anybody not a German that it remains incomprehensible, even after the deepest reflection. Perhaps we may sum up this general phenomenon as 'Ergriffenheit' – a state of being seized or possessed.
The term postulates not only an 'Ergriffener' (one who is seized) but, also, an 'Ergreifer' (one who seizes).
Wotan is an 'Ergreifer' of men, and, unless one wishes to deify Hitler – which has indeed actually happened – he is really the only explanation.
It is true that Wotan shares this quality with his cousin Dionysus, but Dionysus seems to have exercised his influence mainly on women.
The maenads were a species of female 'storm-troopers', and, according to mythical reports, were dangerous enough.
Wotan confined himself to the 'berserkers', who found their vocation as the Blackshirts of mythical kings.
A mind that is still childish thinks of the gods as metaphysical entities existing in their own right, or else regards them as playful or superstitious inventions.
From either point of view the parallel between 'Wotan redivivus' (come back to life; revived) and the social, political, and psychic storm that is shaking Germany might have at least the value of parable.
But since the 'gods' are without doubt personifications of psychic forces, to assert their metaphysical existence is as much an intellectual presumption as the opinion that they could ever be invented.
Not that “psychic forces” have anything to do with the conscious mind, fond as we are of playing with the idea that consciousness and psyche are identical.
This is only another piece of intellectual presumption.
“Psychic forces” have far more to do with the realm of the unconscious.
Our mania for rational explanations obviously has its roots in our fear of metaphysics, for the two were always hostile brothers.
Hence, anything unexpected that approaches us from the dark realm is regarded either as coming from outside and, therefore, as real, or else as a hallucination and, therefore, not true.
The idea that anything could be real or true which does not come from outside has hardly begun to dawn on contemporary man.
For the sake of better understanding and to avoid prejudice, we could of course dispense with the name “Wotan” and speak instead of the 'furor Teutonicus' (furor - violent anger or frenzy; a state of intense excitement).
But we should only be saying the same thing and not as well, for the furor in this case is a mere psychologizing of Wotan and tells us no more than that the Germans are in a state of “fury.”
We thus lose sight of the most peculiar feature of this whole phenomenon, namely, the dramatic aspect of the 'Ergreifer' and the 'Ergriffener'.
The impressive thing about the German phenomenon is that one man, who is obviously “possessed,” has infected a whole nation to such an extent that everything is set in motion and has started rolling on its course towards perdition.
It seems to me that Wotan hits the mark as an hypothesis.
Apparently he really was only asleep in the Kyffhauser mountain until the ravens called him and announced the break of day.

Kyffhäuser Berg
The Kyffhäuser is a range of hills located on the border of the German state of Thuringia with Saxony-Anhalt. It stands on the southern edge of the Harz. The range has a length of 19 kilometres (12 mi) and a width of 7 kilometres (4.3 mi). It reaches its highest point at the Kulpenberg (473.4 metres (1,553 ft)), situated in Thuringia. The Kyffhäuser has significance in German traditional mythology as the resting place of Emperor Frederick Barbarossa, who drowned on June 10, 1190 in the Göksu River near Silifke during the Third Crusade.

He is a fundamental attribute of the German psyche, an irrational psychic factor which acts on the high pressure of civilization like a cyclone and blows it away.
Despite their apparent crankiness, the Wotan-worshippers seem to have judged things more correctly than the worshippers of reason.
Apparently everyone had forgotten that Wotan is a Germanic 'datum' of first importance, the trust expression and unsurpassed personification of a fundamental quality that is particularly characteristic of the Germans.
Houston Stewart Chamberlain is a symptom which arouses suspicion that other veiled gods may be sleeping elsewhere.

Alexander Rothaug
Houston Stewart Chamberlain
The emphasis on the German race – commonly called “Aryan” – the Germanic heritage, blood and soil, the Wagalaweia songs, the ride of the Valkyries, Jesus as a blond and blue-eyed hero, the Greek mother of St. Paul, the devil as an international Alberich in Jewish or Masonic guise, the Nordic aurora borealis as the light of civilization, the inferior Mediterranean races – all this is the indispensable scenery for the drama that is taking place and at the bottom they all mean the same thing: a god has taken possession of the Germans and their house is filled with a “mighty rushing wind.”
It was soon after Hitler seized power that a cartoon appeared in Punch of a raving berserker tearing himself free from his bonds.
A hurricane has broken loose in Germany while we still believe it is fine weather.
Things are comparatively quite in Switzerland, though occasionally there is a puff of wind from the north or south.
Sometimes it has a slightly ominous sound, sometimes it whispers so harmlessly or even idealistically that no one is alarmed.
Let the sleeping dogs lie” – we manage to get along pretty well with this proverbial wisdom.
It is sometimes said that the Swiss are singularly averse to making a problem of themselves.
I must rebut this accusation: the Swiss do have their problems, but they would not admit it for anything in the world, even though they see which way the wind is blowing.
We thus pay our tribute to the time of storm and stress in Germany, but we never mention it, and this enables us to feel vastly superior.
It is above all the Germans who have an opportunity, perhaps unique in history, to look into their own hearts and to learn what those perils of the soul were from which Christianity tried to rescue mankind.
Germany is a land of spiritual catastrophes, where nature never makes more than a pretence of peace with the world-ruling reason.
The disturber of the peace is a wind that blows into Europe from Asia’s vastness, sweeping in on a wide front from Thrace to the Baltic, scattering the nations before it like dry leaves, or inspiring thoughts that shake the world to its foundations.
It is an elemental Dionysus breaking into the Apollonian order.
The rouser of this Tempest is named Wotan, and we can learn a good deal about him from the political confusion and spiritual upheaval he has caused throughout history.
For a more exact investigation of his character, however, we must go back to the age of myths, which did not explain everything in terms of man and his limited capabilities, but sought the deeper cause in the psyche and its autonomous powers.
Man’s earliest intuitions personified these powers as 'gods', and described them in the myths with great care and circumstantiality, according to their various characters.
This could be done the more readily on account of the firmly established primordial types or images which are innate in the unconscious of many races and exercise a direct influence upon them.
Because the behaviour of a race takes on its specific character from its underlying images, we can speak of an archetype “Wotan.”

An archetype is a universally understood symbol, term, statement, or pattern of behaviour, -  a prototype upon which others are copied, patterned, or emulated.
Archetypes are often used in myths and storytelling across different cultures.
In Jung's psychological framework, archetypes are innate, universal prototypes for ideas and may be used to interpret observations. A group of memories and interpretations associated with an archetype is a complex ( e.g. a mother complex associated with the mother archetype). Jung treated the archetypes as psychological organs, analogous to physical ones in that both are morphological constructs that arose through evolution.

As an autonomous psychic factor, Wotan produces effects in the collective life of a people and thereby reveals his own nature.

For Wotan has a peculiar biology of his own, quite apart from the nature of man.
It is only from time to time that individuals fall under the irresistible influence of this unconscious factor.
When it is quiescent, one is no more aware of the archetype Wotan than of a latent epilepsy. Could the Germans who were adults in 1914 have foreseen what they would be today ?
Such amazing transformations are the effect of the god of wind, that “bloweth where it listeth, and thou hearest the sound thereof, but canst not tell whence it cometh, nor whither it goeth.” It seizes everything in its path and overthrows everything that is not firmly rooted.
When the wind blows it shakes everything that is insecure, whether without or within.
Martin Ninck has recently published a monograph which is a most welcome addition to our knowledge of Wotan’s nature.
The reader need not fear that this book is nothing but a scientific study written with academic aloofness from the subject. Certainly the right to scientific objectivity is fully preserved, and the material has been collected with extraordinary thoroughness and presented in unusually clear form. But, over and above all this, one feels that the author is vitally interested in it, that the chord of Wotan is vibrating in him, too.
This is no criticism – on the contrary, it is one of the chief merits of the book, which without this enthusiasm might easily have degenerated into a tedious catalogue.
Ninck sketches a really magnificent portrait of the German archetype Wotan.
He describes him in ten chapters, using all the available sources, as the berserker, the god of storm, the wanderer, the warrior, the Wunsch- (wish) and Minne -god, the lord of the dead and of the Einherjar, the master of secret knowledge, the magician, and the god of the poets. Neither the Valkyries nor the Fylgja (a supernatural being or creature which accompanies a person in connection to their fate or fortune) are forgotten, for they form part of the mythological background and fateful significance of Wotan.
Ninck’s inquiry into the name and its origin is particularly instructive.

Wotan's Runes
© Copyright Peter Crawford 2012
He shows that Wotan is not only a god of rage and frenzy, who embodies the instinctual and emotional aspect of the unconscious.
Its intuitive and inspiring side, also, manifests itself in him, for he understands the runes and can interpret fate.
The Romans identified Wotan with Mercury, but his character does not really corresponded to any Roman or Greek god, although there are certain resemblances.
He is a wanderer like Mercury, for instance, he rules over the dead like Pluto and Kronos, and is connected with Dionysus by his emotional frenzy, particularly in its mantic aspect.
It is surprising that Ninck does not mention Hermes, the god of revelation, who as 'pneuma' (ancient Greek for breath, spirit or soul) and 'nous' (Greek - intellect or intelligence) is associated with the wind.
He would be the connecting-link with the Christian 'pneuma' and the miracle of Pentecost.
As Poimandres (the shepherd of men), Hermes is an 'Ergreifer' like Wotan.
Ninck rightly points out that Dionysus and the other Greek gods always remained under the supreme authority of Zeus, which indicates a fundamental difference between the Greek and Germanic temperament.
Ninck assumes an inner affinity between Wotan and Kronos, and the latter’s defeat may perhaps be a sign that the Wotan-archetype was once overcome and split up in prehistoric times.
At all events, the Germanic god represents a totality on a very primitive level, - a psychological condition in which man’s will was almost identical with the god’s and entirely at his mercy.
But the Greeks had gods who helped man against other gods; indeed, 'All-Father' Zeus himself is not far from the ideal of a benevolent, enlightened despot.
It was not in Wotan’s nature to linger on, and show signs of old age.
He simply disappeared when the times turned against him, and remained invisible for more than a thousand years, working anonymously and indirectly.
Archetypes are like riverbeds which dry up when the water deserts them, but which it can find again at any-time. 
An archetype is like an old watercourse along which the water of life has flowed for centuries, digging a deep channel for itself.
The longer it has flowed in this channel the more likely it is that sooner or later the water will return to its old bed.
The life of the individual as a member of society and particularly as a part of the state may be regulated like a canal, but the life of nations is a great rushing river which is utterly beyond human control, in the hands of 'One' who has always been stronger than men.
The League of Nations, which was supposed to possess supernatural authority, is regarded by some as a child in need of care and protection, by others as an abortion.
Thus, the life of nations rolls on unchecked, without guidance, unconscious of where it is going, like a rock crashing down the side of a hill, until it is stopped by an obstacle stronger than itself. Political events move from one impasse to the next, like a torrent caught in gullies, creeks and marshes.
All human control comes to an end when the individual is caught in a mass movement.
Then, the archetypes begin to function, as happens, also, in the lives of individuals when they are confronted with situations that cannot be dealt with in any of the familiar ways.
But what a so-called Führer does with a mass movement can plainly be seen if we turn our eyes to the north or south of our country.
The ruling archetype does not remain the same forever, as is evident from the temporal limitations that have been set to the hoped-for reign of peace, the “thousand-year Reich.”
The Mediterranean father-archetype of the just, order-loving, benevolent ruler had been shattered over the whole of northern Europe, as the present fate of the Christian churches bears witness.
Fascism in Italy and the civil war in Spain show that in the south as well the cataclysm has been far greater than one expected.
Even the Catholic Church can no longer afford trials of strength.
The nationalist God has attacked Christianity on a broad front.
Deutsche Glaubensbewegung
In Russia, he is called technology and science, in Italy, 'Duce' (leader), and in Germany, 'Deutsch Glaube' (German Faith), 'German Christianity', or the State.
“The German Christians” are a contradiction in many terms, and would do better to join Hauer’s 'Deutsche Glaubensbewegung' (German Faith Movement).
These are decent and well-meaning people who honestly admit their 'Ergriffenheit' and try to come to terms with this new and undeniable fact.
They go to an enormous amount of trouble to make it look less alarming by dressing it up in a conciliatory historical garb and giving us consoling glimpses of great figures such as Meister Eckhart, who was, also, a German and, also, 'ergriffen'.
In this way the awkward question of who the Ergreifer is is circumvented.
He was always “God.”
But the more Hauer restricts the world-wide sphere of Indo-European culture to the “Nordic” in general and to the 'Edda' in particular, and the more “German” this faith becomes as a manifestation of 'Ergriffenheit', the more painfully evident it is that the “German” god is the god of the Germans.
One cannot read Hauer’s book without emotion, if one regards it as the tragic and really heroic effort of a conscientious scholar who, without knowing how it happened to him, was violently summoned by the inaudible voice of the 'Ergreifer' and is now trying with all his might, and with all his knowledge and ability, to build a bridge between the dark forces of life and the shining world of historical ideas.
But what do all the beauties of the past from totally different levels of culture mean to the man of today, when confronted with a living and unfathomable tribal god such as he has never experienced before ?
They are sucked like dry leaves into the roaring whirlwind, and the rhythmic alliterations of the 'Edda' became inextricably mixed up with Christian mystical texts, German poetry and the wisdom of the Upanishads.
Hauer himself is 'ergriffen' by the depths of meaning in the primal words lying at the root of the Germanic languages, to an extent that he certainly never knew before.
Hauer the Indologist is not to blame for this, nor yet the 'Edda'; it is rather the fault of kairos – 'the present moment in time' – whose name on closer investigation turns out to be Wotan.
I would, therefore, advise the 'German Faith Movement' to throw aside their scruples.
Intelligent people will not confuse them with the crude Wotan-worshipers whose faith is a mere pretense.

Jakob Wilhelm Hauer
Emblem of the
Deutsche Glaubensbewegung
© Copyright Peter Crawford 2012
The Deutsche Glaubensbewegung was closely associated with Jakob Wilhelm Hauer during the Third Reich (1933–1945), and sought to move Germany away from Christianity towards a religion based on "immediate experience" of God. Hauer was a professor at the University of Tübingen.

Instead of the Bible, a combination of Indian (Hindu) and German literature was used as scripture. Hauer had worked as a missionary in India and was influenced in particular by the Bhagavad Gita. Ceremonies of the movement involved sermons, German classical music and political hymns. Hauer was considered by contemporary observers as a genuinely religious man, though his political sentiments were also commented on. The movement had around 200,000 followers at its height. Following the Nazi accession to power, it obtained rights of civil tolerance from Rudolf Hess, but never the preferential treatment from the Third Reich, for which Hauer campaigned. The development of the German Faith Movement revolved around four main themes:

the propagation of the 'blood and soil' ideology
the replacement of Christian ceremonies by pagan equivalents; the most favoured pagan deity being the sun, as can be seen from the flag of the faith movement
the rejection of Christian ethics
the cult of Hitler's personality.
Similar movements have remained active in Germany since 1945 outside mainstream educational and social structures.

There are people in the 'German Faith Movement' who are intelligent enough not only to believe, but to know, that the god of the Germans is Wotan and not the Christian God.
This is a tragic experience and no disgrace.
It has always been terrible to fall into the hands of a living god.
Yahweh was no exception to this rule, and the Philistines, Edomites, Amorites, and the rest, who were outside the Yahweh experience, must certainly have found it exceedingly disagreeable.
The Semitic experience of Allah was for a long time an extremely painful affair for the whole of Christendom.
We who stand outside judge the Germans far too much, as if they were responsible agents, but perhaps it would be nearer the truth to regard them, also, as victims.
If we apply our admittedly peculiar point of view consistently, we are driven to conclude that Wotan must, in time, reveal not only the restless, violent, stormy side of his character, but, also, his ecstatic and mantic qualities (relating to, or having the power of divination) – a very different aspect of his nature.
If this conclusion is correct, National Socialism would not be the last word.
Things must be concealed in the background which we cannot imagine at present, but we may expect them to appear in the course of the next few years or decades.
Wotan’s reawakening is stepping into the past; the stream was dammed up and has broken into its old channel.
But the Obstruction will not last forever; it is rather a reculer pour mieux sauter, (go back to have a better jump) and the water will over-leap the obstacle.
Then, at last, we shall know what Wotan is saying when  he “murmurs with Mimir’s head.

Mímir (Old Norse "The rememberer, the wise one") is a figure in Norse mythology renowned for his knowledge and wisdom, who is beheaded during the Æsir-Vanir War.
Afterward, the god Odin carries around Mímir's head, and it recites secret knowledge and counsel to him.


„Ich gehe manchmal in rauhen Nächten 
Zur Wotanseiche in den stillen Hain, 
Mit dunklen Mächten einen Bund zu flechten - 
Die Runen zaubert mir der Mondenschein. 

Und alle, die am Tage sich erfrechten, 

Sie werden vor der Zauberformel klein ! 
Sie ziehen blank – doch statt den Strauß zu flechten, 
Erstarren sie zu Stalagmitgestein. 

So scheiden sich die Falschen von den Echten - 

Ich greife in das Fibelnest hinein 
Und gebe dann den Guten und Gerechten 
Mit meiner Formel Segen und Gedeihn.“
Adolf Hitler 1915

I often go on bitter nights 
To Wotan’s oak in the quiet glade 
With dark powers to weave a union -
The runic letters the moon makes with its magic spell

And all who are full of impudence during the day 
Are made small by the magic formula ! 
They draw shining steel - but instead of going into combat 
They solidify into stalagmites. 

So the false ones part from the real ones -
I reach into a nest of words 
And then give to the good and just 
With my formula, blessings and prosperity.

©© Copyright Peter Crawford 2012