Enter your mobile number or email address below and we'll send you a link to download the free Kindle App. Then you can start reading Kindle books on your smartphone, tablet, or computer - no Kindle device required.
To get the free app, enter your mobile phone number.
The Aryan Christ: The Secret Life of Carl Jung Hardcover – August 26, 1997
"Neverworld Wake" by Marisha Pessl
Read the absorbing new psychological suspense thriller from acclaimed New York Times bestselling author Marisha Pessl. Pre-order today
Customers who bought this item also bought
From Library Journal
A revisionist biography by Noll, who has a Ph.D. in clinical psychology.
Copyright 1997 Reed Business Information, Inc.
From its inception at the turn of the century, psychology has always appeared to its critics as more a religion than a science. In this particularly vitriolic work, Noll, a professor of the history of science at Harvard, seeks to remove any guise of science from Jungian psychology. Noll brands Jung and his followers as little more than pagan spiritualists and polygamists, employing a veneer of science to add respectability to their rituals. He laments the paucity of Jung's papers available to scholars, noting that Jung's estate has virtually sealed all letters, diaries, and other papers belonging to Jung, his wife, his lovers, and his collaborator, J. J. Honegger. Moreover, he attacks Memories, Dreams, Reflections, widely believed to be autobiographical, as a heavily sanitized fraud composed by Aniela Jaffe, Jung's assistant, and editors at Pantheon Press. Drawing on letters and diaries from Jung's colleagues and patients, Noll recounts in vivid detail numerous episodes of adultery, paganism, and mysticism, including seances and the trances that revealed to Jung his status as a new-age religious prophet, the "Aryan Christ." This serious work of scholarship may cause widespread controversy for it is quite accessible to the lay reader. Ted Leventhal
Top customer reviews
There was a problem filtering reviews right now. Please try again later.
I came to this book with a very high regard for Jung and seeing him as a guardian of truth in standing up to Freud's dogmatic insistence on the sexual basis of all neuroses. I still regard Jung as brilliant and having made extremely important contributions to humanity, but I now see a more balanced picture. Freud may have been too focused on sexuality, but apparently so was Jung, although in a much more personal way. Noll provides a convincing picture of Jung as being secretly dogmatic that a form of free love is essential to psychological health. Jung's sexual relationships with patients and coworkers, and his advice to patients to have extramarital affairs seem incontrovertible based on the evidence presented here.
I suspect that much of the criticism of Noll is based on his evidence that Jung was heavily into an Aryan world viewpoint, which immediately conjures up Nazi stereotypes in our minds. Noll repeatedly tries to counteract that understandable tendency, saying for example (last paragraph of the Introduction) "But the most troublesome part of this story comes from asking you, the reader, to do the morally impossible: to imagine a world - fin-de-siecle German Kultur - in which the words "Hitler" and "Nazi" and "Holocaust" do not exist."
Along these lines, it helps to remember that many intelligent, respectable, well-meaning Americans (e.g., Lindberg, Joseph Kennedy Sr.) were early Nazi supporters, just as many were early Communist supporters. The horrendous evils perpetrated in the names of Aryanism and Communism were not present in their early philosophies. It also helps to remember that anti-Semitism and racism in general were the cultural norm througout the world until well into the 1960's or 1970's. It was almost impossible NOT to be prejudiced in Jung's time. (A related book that touches on psychoanalysis and anti-Semitism and that I highly recommend is Bakan's "Sigmund Freud and the Jewish Mystical Tradition.")
Another problem concerns Noll's evidence that Jung disparaged Christianity and secretly reverted to (as well as secretly proselytized for) an ancient, pagan, Aryan religion. Such a move will be seen through a highly distorting filter if viewed in the context of today's Christianity. Again, it is hard, but important, to view Jung's choices in terms of the dogmatic Swiss-German Christianity of the late nineteenth century.
As with most movements that believe they have the secret to saving the world, many Jungians idealize their prophet and make him into a kind of god. In contrast, the picture that emerges from "Aryan Christ" is of a brilliant man -- but a man not a god and therefore with all the attendant human frailties. The danger is in forgetting Jung's humanity.
However, you can tell Noll can't stand C.G Jung. Every opportunity to kick the guy is gladly taken.
This book reminds me of the biography of Timothy Leary by Robert Greenfield. Greenfield hates Leary at much as Noll hates Jung. But Greenfield's book is a classic and the man knows his subject.
As to why a man who can't stand a bloke will spend years researching the man when he can just throw a shoe at him is any ones guess!
Me, ill make a voodoo doll of my enemy and eat it rather than sit there and write a book about the bastards!