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The Mona Lisa comes the closest to her. But what is the practical significance of the anima role of guide to the inner world? Her positive function develops at the point at which a man takes his feelings, moods, and unconscious expectations seriously and captures them in some sort of a form, for example, by writing them down, by painting, sculpting, or expressing them in music or dance. If he then ponders them with patience, more and more contents will rise out of the depths. This pondering must, however, be both intellectual and moral, that is, it must take place in the presence of feeling, and the fantasies must be related to as completely real, without sly secret thoughts to the effect that “after all, this is only a fantasy I’m dealing with.” If one practices this sort of devotion toward the unconscious over a long period of time, the process of individuation becomes the only reality altogether, and it then unfolds in all its aspects. The role of the anima as guide to the inner world is also depicted in many literary works: in Francesco Colonna’s Hypnerotomachia,25 Rider Haggard’s She, in the “eternal feminine” in Goethe’s Faust. A medieval text has this figure saying of herself: I am the flower of the field and the lily of the valley; I am the mother of fair love, of knowledge and of sacred hope. . . . I am very beautiful and without taint. . . . I am the mediator among the elements, who reconciles one with the others; what is warm, I cool; what is dry, I make moist; what is hard, I soften—and the reverse. . . . I am the law in the priest and the word in the prophet and the counsel in the sage. I can kill and bring to life, and there is no one who can deliver (anything) out of my hand.”26 At the time this text was composed, religion, poetry, and psychic culture were going through a major upswing, and the world of fantasy was receiving more recognition than hitherto. This was the time of chivalry and courtly love, in which the man of the time attempted to develop his feminine aspect both in relation to a real woman and in his inner world. The lady to whom the knight consecrated his service was a personification of the anima for him. The female bearer of the Holy Grail in Wolfram von Eschenbach’s Grail epic has a highly significant name: Conduiramour, which means “she who guides in matters of love.” It was she who taught the hero how to differentiate his feeling and his behavior in a relationship with a woman.27

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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