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underworld goddess). Proserpina is the dark, underworld aspect, ruler of death and of the ghosts, but also protectress of the living against the ghosts. He gives the goddess no more and no less than an involuntary quaternio6 of aspects, which represents a totality in a female form. He exhorts at this moment the mother-anima figure as being identical with the Self. This identity appears often in the beginning phase of the development of the Self. In a series of dreams on which Jung has commented in Psychology and Alchemy,7 there are, for instance, dreams in which a woman appears with a round object which shines like the sun, and Jung says that there the anima and the Self are still identical. Later Lucius realizes that the goddess is only a guide, a mediatrix who will help him to find Osiris, the real symbol of the Self.8 Only at the end of our book does the direct realization of the Self appear. But in the present moment it appears to him through the mediation of the goddess, indicated by her fourfold aspect. She is for him the totality of the psyche in its female aspect. The anima personifies here his overwhelming religious emotion. If we think back to his sensual attitude and his cynical intellectual attitude, we can see this new attitude as an astonishing change. Even the style of writing, the tone, has changed (though some mannerisms remain), which has even caused certain philologists to assume that this part of the novel has been added by another author. When Apuleius, however, ceases to be ironic and mocking, it is a tremendous achievement, for he now gives himself naively to the inner experience. It is an experience of the totality of the godhead, conveyed through the anima, revealing what was really behind all the experiences through which Lucius had passed. Proserpina-Hecate especially personifies the magical aspect of the mother goddess. She transforms her lovers into beasts. Lucius suffered from the magical aspect of the feminine in his experience with Photis, but everything he has gone through has been along the lines of personal involvement; now, at last, the archetypal meaning has become clear to him. At the end of the prayer Lucius reaches an attitude in which wanting to live or to die are no longer important; what is important for him is to be himself. There is an analogy between this text and that of the conversation in The World-Weary Man and His Ba, an old Egyptian text studied by Helmuth Jacobsohn.9 The Ba in this text personifies the soul or the Self of a man who wants to commit suicide. It says to the desperate man that it is a minor problem whether one returns to life or kills oneself. The only important thing

Profile for Lewis Lafontaine

Marie Louise Von Franz - The Golden Ass of Alpulius  

Marie Louise Von Franz - The Golden Ass of Alpulius  

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