How do Jungian Archetypes work?

How do Jungian Archetypes work?
March 14, 2022 No Comments Mental health emmahjoy

Carl Jung is one of the Psychologists whose works have had a great impact in the field of psychology. One of his major contributions is the development of the Jungian archetypes . In his work, archetypes refers to innate models of behavior or personality traits that influences human behavior. The archetypes originate from the collective conscious. They appears as patterns and images that have been inherited from ancestral origins.

The Archetypes work as a form of instinct in an individual which when triggered, directly influences an individuals behavior and how they react to given situations. For example, the warrior archetype would influence courage whereas the caregiver would be nurturing.

The archetypes are forms and images around us. They exist in our unconscious mind, as information stored from ancient religions, myths, stories, fairy tales and legends. Thus an individual tends to unconsciously borrow the characteristics of these images into their daily life.

The four main Archetypes

They include:

The Persona; It basically refers to how an individual presents themselves to the world. It is developed as a child gets to learn about roles and norms in the society. The child learns that to survive, they have to act and behave in a certain manner.

The Shadow; As depicted from its name, it represents the unconscious mind. It is basically composed of an individuals desires, weaknesses, repressed ideas, instincts and short comings. It forms as a result of an individual trying to adopt to cultural norms and expectations in the society.

The Anima/ Animus; represents the true self of an individual and not the version they present to the world. It is also the instincts behind gender identity and sex roles. The anima plays the feminine image whereas the animus is the male image in an individual.

The Self; represents the unified consciousness and unconsciousness of an individual.

Despite the four major Archetypes, Carl Jung stated that archetypes are not fixed. Thus they can overlap or combine to form other forms of archetypes. Examples include;

The Hero; Defender and rescuer

The Warrior; Courage, bravery

The mother; also known as care giver. Nurturing and comforting

The Father; Figure of authority and power

The child; a representation of freedom and innocence

The Rebel; Also considered as the outlaw. stands for liberation

The Artist; represents innovation

The Trickster; the liar, deceiver

The Lover; pleasure and intimacy

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