Dialectical Spiritualism: Carl Jung

BY: SUN STAFF - 17.10 2017

Conversations wtih HDG A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada, excerpted from  Dialectical Spiritualism: A Vedic View of Western Philosophy.

Carl Gustav Jung (1875 - 1961)

Hayagriva dasa: Jung gave the following criticism of Sigmund Freud: "Sexuality evidently meant more to Freud than to other people. For him it was something to be religiously observed One thing was clear; Freud, who had always made much of his irreligiosity, had now constructed a dogma, or rather, in the place of a jealous God whom he had lost, he had substituted another compelling image, that of sexuality."

Srila Prabhupada: Yes, that is a fact. He has taken sexuality to be God. It is our natural tendency to accept a leader, and Freud abandoned the leadership of God and took up the leadership of sex. In any case, we must have leadership. That is our position. In Russia, I pointed out that there is no difference in our philosophic processes. However, whereas they accept Lenin as their leader, we accept Krsna. It is the nature of human beings to accept a leader. It is unfortunate that Freud lost God's leadership and took up instead the leadership of sex.

Hayagriva dasa: Jung concluded: "Freud never asked himself why he was compelled to talk continually of sex, why this idea had taken such possession of him. He remained unaware that his 'monotony of interpretation' expressed a flight from himself, or from that other side of him which might perhaps be called mystical. So long as he refused to acknowledge that side, he could never be reconciled with himself."

Srila Prabhupada: Yes, that was because he was accepting the leadership of sexuality. If we accept the leadership of Krsna, our life becomes perfect. All other leadership is maya's leadership. There is no doubt that we have to accept a leader, and therefore he was constantly speaking about sex. Those who have taken God as their leader will speak only of God, nothing else. Jivera 'svarupa haya — krsnera 'nitya-dasa (Caitanyacaritamrta, Madh. 20.108) According to Caitanya Mahaprabhu's philosophy, we are all eternal servants of God, but as soon as we give up God's service, we have to accept the service of maya.

Syamasundara dasa: For Freud, the unconscious process, the id, was invariably animalistic and lawless, whereas for Jung, these unconscious energies were potentially sources of positive creative activity.

Srila Prabhupada: The subconscious state is covered by our present consciousness, and it can also be covered by Krsna consciousness. In that case, the subconscious states will no longer be able to react. For instance, the subconscious sex drive is there, but because Yamunacarya was in Krsna consciousness, he could overcome it. The subconscious experiences, which have been gathering for life after life, which are stored, as it were, will not be able to overcome the individual if he is fully Krsna conscious.

Syamasundara dasa: Jung sees the mind as being composed of a balance of the conscious and the unconscious, or subconscious. It is the function of the personality to integrate these. For instance, if one has a strong sex drive, he can sublimate or channel that drive into creative art or religious activity.

Srila Prabhupada: That is our process. The sex impulse is natural for everyone in the material world. If we think of Krsna embracing Radharani, or dancing with the gopis, our material sex impulse is sublimated and weakened. If we hear about the pastimes of Krsna and the gopis from the right source, lusty desire within the heart will be suppressed, and we will be able to develop devotional service. What we must understand is that Krsna is the only purusa, enjoyer. If we help Him in His enjoyment, we also receive enjoyment. We are predominated, and He is the predominator. On the material platform, if a husband wants to enjoy his wife, the wife must voluntarily help him in that enjoyment. By helping him, the wife also becomes an enjoyer. The predominator, the enjoyer, is Krsna, and the predominated, the enjoyed, are the living entities. Actually, both enjoy, but one enjoys as the predominated, and the other as the predominator. When the predominated helps the predominator, that is the perfection of enjoyment. We must admit that sex desire is present in everyone, both male and female, and from an impartial point of view, it appears that the male is the enjoyer and the female the enjoyed, but if the female agrees to be enjoyed, she naturally becomes the enjoyer. All living entities are described as prakrti, female. Krsna is purusa, male. When the living entities agree to help Krsna's sex desire, they become enjoyers.

Syamasundara dasa: What is meant by Krsna's sex desire?

Srila Prabhupada: You might more correctly say "sense enjoyment." Krsna is the supreme proprietor of the senses, and when we help Krsna in His sense enjoyment, we also naturally partake of it. The sweet rasagulla is to be enjoyed, and therefore the hand takes it and puts it into the mouth so that it can be tasted and go to the stomach. It is not that the hand tries to enjoy it directly. Krsna is the only direct enjoyer; all others are indirect enjoyers. By satisfying Krsna, we also satisfy others. We cannot possibly satisfy others directly. For instance, when a wife sees her husband eating and enjoying himself, she becomes happy. Upon seeing the predominator happy, the predominated becomes happy.

Syamasundara dasa: In the individual, should the unconscious state be predominated by the conscious?

Srila Prabhupada: That is being done. Unconscious or subconscious states sometimes emerge; we are not always aware of them. But consciousness is always there. Actually, the word "unconscious" is not a good word because it implies a lack of consciousness. "Subconscious" is a better word.