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probably represents neither a woman nor an anima, but is an archetypal Kore figure, that is, a feminine being in whom the archetypal anima of the man26 as well as the archetypal model of the feminine ego is depicted.27 In addition, the course of events in which this figure becomes involved can be interpreted in terms of the psychological problems of both sexes. Seen from the point of view of the deeper, collective levels of the unconscious, both patterns are actually interwoven,28 just as in the outer reality of the simple folk out of whose midst this tale comes, the image of the real woman and the anima, on the one hand, and that of the real man and the animus, on the other, remain, as a result of projection, to a great extent indistinct.29 The crofter has seven children. No mother is mentioned; she must be dead. Thus the tale begins with a group of eight figures, among which only the father and the daughter emerge clearly. As Jung has shown, the number eight, like the number four, indicates psychic wholeness. Numbers that are a multiple of four come up with particular frequency in this story. The girl is twelve years old; she has to wait eight days to assume her position definitively; she is not allowed to enter the hundredth room.; the black woman imposes four trials on her (three times taking her children away, and once confronting her with burning at the stake). Thus the rhythm 4, 8, 12, 100 is stressed, and from this we can conclude that here we are dealing with psychic processes connected with individuation.30 According to R. Allendy, the number eight has on one hand the meaning of a double quaternity, and on the other it betokens a final equilibrium arrived at through a process of development;31 psychologically this would mean the Self. But although the number of figures here indicates a psychic totality, an essential aspect is missing from this initial situation, which ordinarily we would expect to find—the image of the mother. It is for that reason that the entire process represented in the story aims at redeeming the “mother imago,” that is, lifting her up from her “unilluminated” position into the light and renewing contact with her. At the beginning of the fairy tale, we have an incomplete family; at the end, a relatively complete one. It often happens in fairy tales that at the beginning a symbol of wholeness appears—for example, a group composed of a father with three sons32—but this wholeness is lacking an aspect, for example, the feminine element. We can deduce from this that in the collective consciousness an attitude (for example, a religious form) is dominant, which though in principle taking into account the psychic

Profile for Lewis Lafontaine

Marie - Louise Von Franz - Archetypal Dimensions of the Psyche -  

Marie - Louise Von Franz - Archetypal Dimensions of the Psyche -  

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