WILLIAM JAMES AND C. G. JUNG:
DOORWAYS TO THE SELF
SATURDAY, NOVEMBER 5, 2022
NOON – 4PM
FACULTY: STEVEN HERRMANN, PhD, MFT
Exploring the influence of William James on the development
of analytical psychology
The influence of American psychology on the development of C. G. Jung’s concept of the “Self” is an area of inquiry that has not been given much attention by scholars, historians, or clinicians. Jung met William James (the father of American psychology) in 1909 at Clark University and again in 1910. Jung was highly influenced by Jamesian pragmatism, based on radical empiricism and scientific objectivity. Like James, Jung considered himself to be an empirical scientist. The connection between James and C. G. Jung needs to be better understood in order to see some of the precursors that broaden our understanding of the field of analytical psychology. This includes topics such as the infinite extent of the human psyche, a psychology of consciousness, notions of spiritual democracy, pluralism, religious experience, and a psychology of action. James paved the way towards an entirely new psychological relativity towards spiritual experience that profoundly affected Jung’s Self-concept. He brought a detached and accepting attitude to all forms of psychological experience that inspired Jung during the middle to later years of his life. “Doorways to the Self” is not a mere metaphor but an invitation to recognize the living spiritual reality that exists in every person.
STEVEN HERRMANN, PhD, MFT, is an analyst member of the C.G. Jung Institute of San Francisco. He has published numerous papers, several book chapters and six books, including his newest book, William James and C. G. Jung: Doorways to the Self. Steven has taught nationally and internationally on Jung’s analytical psychology, American poetry, sandplay, shamanism, and William James. Steven has a private practice in Oakland, CA where he sees individual adults and couples.