More on “the man in her dreams…”

Preparing for a book study I’m offering at St. James’ Episcopal Church in Jackson, MS and St. Columb’s Episcopal Church in Ridgeland, MS, I came across this passage from John Sanford’s Dreams: God’s Forgotten Language:

“The astute woman reader may now guess for herself the third recurring archetypal figure:  it is the man in her dreams, a peculiarity of the psychology of women, whom Jung has called the ‘animus.’  His existence can be explained in a similar way as the existence of the anima in the man.  He represents the woman’s own neglected masculine qualities, forms a separate personality within her, and exerts great influence upon a woman’s consciousness.  He acts as spokesman for some of her unconscious attitudes and is the woman’s lost spirit.  He holds the key to the development as a person in her own right.  The more she wishes to become an individual, not just Eve, mother of the race, the more she must recognize and develop the animus.  Like the anima, the animus is seen in dreams, in the behavior of women, and in literature.  In her dreams, he is father, husband, lover, spiritual guide, healer sorcerer, demon, any one of scores of kinds of men.  In her behavior he is just as variable.  He may help her to constructive thinking, individual development, creative ideas, or fill her with inflexible opinions, sever her relationships to people, give her a biting tongue, or become a tormenting voice which tells her what she must be thinking or doing.” pages 134-135.

That’s a longish quote but a succinct description of that guy about whom we keep dreaming.  How has your animus been presenting himself in your dreams?

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Karen Mori Bonner, MS, LPC
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Email: info@dreamcounselor.ms

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