What attracted me to the ideas of CG Jung, a Swiss psychiatrist who was for a time a close associate of Freud’s, was his very expansive turn of mind. He believed in Terence’s dictum that ‘nothing human is alien to me’, and turned his extensive curiosity to all aspects of human thought and feeling.
I find that his work on dreams was far more imaginative than Freud’s, and involved not only attending to his patients’ personal associations, but also to those aspects of humanity which are, as it were, hardwired. He was interested in the notion of conflict both as the source of neurosis, and the possible route for its resolution.
Jung was also interested in the many characters who inhabit our internal world, and used an idea developed by his wife, Emma, who also became an analyst, about the contrasexual aspect within each of us. What we might now call the feminine aspect of the man, and the masculine aspect of a woman.
His own experience and observations led him to realise that there is an evolutionary purpose in the human psyche, and that our role in becoming more self-aware means engaging fully, in other words both consciously and unconsciously, in that purpose.