Carl Jung was one of Freud’s disciples who would later disagree with him to the point of developing different “schools” of therapy. Specifically, he founded what today is called Deep Psychology or Analytical Psychology .

This type of psychology considers the existence of a collective unconscious from which various archetypes are inherited and transmitted, as well as a personal unconscious in which the conflicts inherent in the subject’s own experience remain, in the form of complexes. All of this evolves in such a way that the subject builds up his identity, his very self.

For Jung, the symbolic and representative as well as the dreams and the artistic expressions are of great importance, as they allow to clarify the content of the unconscious in the conscience, as well as the spiritual (dimension of the person to whom he gave great value).

In order to better understand his vision of life and the psyche, in this article you can find 80 sentences by Carl Jung .

80 quotes from Carl Gustav Jung

Jung’s vision of the human psyche and the various aspects that shape us as persons has a strong symbolic and even spiritual tinge . To better understand Jung’s work, you can review the following reflections of the author.

1. The meeting of two people is like the contact of two chemicals: if there is a reaction, both are transformed

In this sentence Jung reflects on the capacity of the human being to provoke a reaction in the other and the importance of human contact in development, the process of change and vital transformation.

2. Know all the theories. Master all techniques, but when you touch a human soul, be just another human soul

This phrase refers to the fact that regardless of our knowledge and skills we are human beings who deal with other human beings. A cold and distant treatment can be harmful, and it is essential to establish relationships of trust based on understanding and unconditional acceptance.

3. One does not attain enlightenment by fantasizing about light but by making the darkness conscious… what is not made conscious manifests itself in our lives as destiny

Jung urges us with this phrase to let go of our unconscious side and allow the expression of instincts, without repressing them out of fear or dread.

4. The main function of dreams is to try to restore our psychological balance

In this sentence we see how for Jung dreams are elements that pretend to clarify our conscience.

5. Life not lived is a disease from which one can die

The repression and inhibition of one’s own being makes it difficult for us to live the life we really want or need to lead, causing deep frustration and suffering.

6. You are what you do, not what you say you are going to do

This phrase urges us to act rather than promise or think about doing so.

7. People will do anything, no matter how absurd, to avoid facing their own souls.

Fear of oneself, of what they will say, or a high level of moral rigidity causes us to engage in behavior that seeks to occupy our time or to deny one’s own essence, not accepting oneself.

8. One man’s shoe fits another man’s; no recipe for life works every time

What works for one can work for another. This can apply to many areas of life, from psychological treatments to ways of dealing with particular conflicts.

9. If you’re a talented person, it doesn’t mean you’ve already received something. It means that you can give something

This phrase urges us to offer and give the best of ourselves and our abilities, seeking the good. Talent is a gift to be offered to the world.

10. Great talents are the most charming and often the most dangerous fruits on the tree of humanity. They hang on the thinnest and most easily broken branches

Talent is born largely from effort, but care and restraint must be taken to achieve it. Generally, too, talent has to be cultivated and cared for or it may fade away.

11. No one, as long as they move through the chaotic currents of life, is without problems

Living means facing vicissitudes and difficulties and finding obstacles to overcome in order to achieve our goals. A life without any problems does not exist, or is limited to surviving without living.

12. I’m not what happened to me. I am what I chose to be

Our past can mark us in many ways and can predispose us to act in certain ways. However, we can always choose what to do from now on and how we will go about it. The past has already happened, it is up to us to choose what to do now and in the future.

13. The privilege of a life is to become who you really are

Be who you are. Find a balance in our conflicts and develop our identity by living according to it.

14. Your vision will become clear only when you can look into your own heart. He who looks outward dreams; he who looks inward wakes

Jung advocates that self-awareness and knowledge of our nature is necessary in order to understand ourselves and to be able to reach a balance and objectives that harmonize with it.

15. Everything in creation is essentially subjective and the dream is a theater where the dreamer is at once stage, actor, manager, author, public and critic

In this sentence we are told about subjectivity and dreams as an element of representation of our psyche.

16. Sleep is the small door hidden in the deepest and most intimate sanctuary of the soul

Again the author indicates the value of dreams in their linkage to the expression of our desires.

17. Those who learn nothing of the unpleasant facts of life force the cosmic consciousness to reproduce them as many times as necessary to learn what the drama of what happened teaches. What you deny submits you; what you accept transforms you

Suffering, however painful, allows us to learn different aspects of life. Not accepting it means that we will tend to repeat the same pattern of behavior, while doing so brings us closer to overcoming it.

18. Loneliness does not come from not having people around you, but from not being able to communicate the things that seem important to you, or from holding certain views that others consider inadmissible

Jung reflects on what it means to feel lonely , which is different from being physically lonely.

19. In one way or another we are part of one all-encompassing mind, one great human being

We’re all connected to each other. This phrase also connects with the idea of the existence of a collective unconscious through which we transmit elements such as archetypes.

20. There are as many nights as there are days, and each one lasts as long as the day after it. Even the happiest life cannot be measured without a few moments of darkness, and the word happy would lose all meaning if it were not balanced by sadness

We are able to know what happiness is because there are moments when we are not, which allows us to value it. The life we live is a balance between opposites.

21. Show me a sane man and I will heal him for you

We all have our problems. Even people who do not manifest psychopathology suffer and will suffer from various circumstances throughout life and may need help.

22. If there is something we want to change in the child, we must first examine it and see if it is not something that might be better changed in ourselves

Each person is as they are and has their own way of seeing the world. Before trying to change the characteristics of others it is necessary to consider where they come from, since sometimes we ourselves cause those characteristics. Also, what needs to be changed may not be a characteristic that bothers us but the fact that it bothers us.

23. There cannot be a transformation from darkness to light and from apathy to unemotional movement

Emotions are a major element to consider when explaining our behavior. Working only on a behavioural level may not generate real change if there is no motivation to do so.

24. Fanaticism is an overcompensation of doubt

For Jung, taking extremist positions comes from an attempt to fight uncertainty and doubt through over-corrective methods.

25. I simply believe that some part of the self or the human soul is not subject to the laws of space and time

Jung’s spiritual side is brought out in this sentence.

26. A man who has not passed through the hell of his passions has never overcome them

Overcoming something means facing it despite the pain it may cause us.

27. The most frightening thing is to accept yourself completely

Accepting both our person and our shadow, both what we express and what we repress, is tremendously complex. We all have a good side and a dark side.

28. Knowledge of your own darkness is the best method for dealing with other people’s darkness

Being aware of the totality of one’s nature can help to understand the presence of similar elements in others, both in the expressed and the hidden, and help them to understand themselves and live their lives in a satisfactory manner.

29. What you resist, persists

Resisting something is only one way to keep it in our minds and present it again in the future.

30. We may come to think that we control ourselves completely. However, a friend can easily tell us something about ourselves that we didn’t know about

Although we often believe that no one knows us better than we do, we sometimes express things that we are not even aware of. Others may teach us things about ourselves that we didn’t know.

31. The bigger the crowd, the more insignificant the person

We human beings tend to partially dissolve when we are in a crowd.

32. Consciousness is a condition of being

Being aware is a fundamental part of being and knowing that we are. Without consciousness there could not be a self.

33. Nothing has a stronger psychological influence on your environment and especially on your children than the unlived life of a parent

What we experience and what we repress not only has an effect on ourselves, but through our actions we transmit it to the environment and the people around us.

34. Time is a child who plays like a child. I am one but in contrast to myself I am young and old at the same time

In this sentence Jung talks about self-awareness. We are who we are all our lives, no matter how old we are, although various aspects may change during development.

35. All the works of man have their origin in creative fantasy. What right, then, do we have to the amortization of imagination?

Art and expression have their origin in the capacity of fantasy and creativity, aspects linked to our emotions, our nature and impulses. This idea has a lot to do with the emphasis that Jung put on analyzing the works of artistic and cultural expression, through which one could recognize the archetypes .

  • Related article: “Archetypes according to Carl Gustav Jung”

36. The unconscious can reserve essential messages for ears that know how to listen

Introspection can serve as a mechanism to get to know unconscious aspects of oneself. Likewise, specialized and skilled people can help uncover the unconscious elements trapped in others.

37. When love is the norm, there is no will to power, and where power is imposed, love is lacking

Loving means not wanting to dominate the other, not establishing relationships of superiority or inferiority with the person or object loved. If this happens in reality there is no true love.

38. Do not hold back those who stray from you, for then those who wish to come closer will not come

The meaning of this phrase leads us to let things flow and stop living from the past, or we can miss out on great opportunities.

39. Art is a kind of innate unity that takes hold of a human being and makes him its instrument. The artist is not a person endowed with free will who seeks his own benefit, but an art that allows him to realize his purpose through it

Jung reflects his view of what art is all about, and its irrationality.

40. Everything that irritates us about others leads to an understanding of ourselves

In this sentence we are told that the fact that something irritates us can allow us to discover how we are and why it is irritating.

41. We are all born originals and die copies.

This phrase reflects the idea that in childhood we are authentic and pure, while as we grow up we are constrained by our experiences and the repression of our nature. We tend to adopt the behavioural model of the majority .

42. The unconscious is the history of humanity since time immemorial

This phrase partly reflects Jung’s concept of the collective unconscious, which allows the transmission of knowledge and information across time and generations.

43. No psychic value can disappear without being replaced by another equivalent in intensity

Our emotions, feelings, beliefs or values do not just disappear, they are transformed.

44. You can take away a man’s gods, but only to give him others in return

This sentence refers to the same aspect as the previous one. What we believe, what we value, think or feel cannot simply fade away, but can only be transformed.

45. The healthy man does not torture others, usually it is the tortured who becomes the torturer

In this sentence it is established that generally the person who hurts others is because he or she has been hurt before (it is important to note that the relationship is not reversed, that is, not all tortured people become torturers).

46. The separation of psychology from the premises of biology is purely artificial, because the human psyche lives in indissoluble union with the body

Despite being deeply spiritual, Jung believed that body and mind are united and influence each other .

  • You may be interested in: “Dualism in Psychology”

47. We should not pretend to understand the world only through the intellect. The judgment of the intellect is only part of the truth

Sensations and intuitions are an important part of helping to explain the world. Using only logic limits our point of view.

48. Children are educated by what the great one does and not by what he says.

Words may be important, but what we remember from childhood is what our references do.

All forms of addiction are bad, whether the narcotic is alcohol, morphine, or idealism

Circumscribing our way of acting only on the basis of one aspect of our life is harmful and detrimental.

50. When the most intense conflicts are overcome, they leave a sense of security and tranquillity that is not easily disturbed. It is only these intense conflicts and their conflagration that are needed to produce valuable and lasting results

The resolution of important conflicts for us is fundamental and necessary in order to modify our way of seeing life and acting, while their resolution allows us to feel satisfaction and well-being.

51. If one does not understand another person, one tends to consider him or her a madman

Lack of understanding is what leads to confrontation, and this, together with other factors, can lead to criticism and to the consideration that the other person is wrong or even not in good mental health.

52. Complexes are psychic contents that are beyond the control of the conscious mind. They have split from the consciousness and lead a separate existence in the unconscious, being at all times ready to hinder or reinforce conscious intentions

The complexes with for Jung the repressed elements of the psyche that cause great problems when acting, generally caused by the experience of stressful, painful and traumatic events. These contents are separated from the conscious psyche because of the pain they generate.

53. The unconscious is not something bad by nature, it is also a source of well-being. Not only darkness but also light, not only bestial and demonic, but also spiritual and divine

Often the unconscious, the instinct and the drive are understood as something brutal and that has negative connotations, but it also means the birth of passion, art, expression, goodness or love.

54. The word belief is a difficult thing for me. I don’t believe. I have to have a reason for a certain hypothesis. Either I know one thing, and then, I know that I don’t need to believe

What is a belief? Where does it come from? Jung considered that behind them there was a certain reason that makes them more than mere beliefs.

55. The pendulum of the mind alternates between sense and nonsense, not between good and evil

Good and evil are concepts created by human beings. We simply act in a certain way that may or may not make sense or be consistent.

56. We cannot change anything until we accept it. Condemnation does not free, it oppresses

Condemning something, repressing it, only causes it to be hidden and prevents it from being changed.

57. I’ve been accused of defending the soul. It was not I but God Himself who defended it

A phrase that reflects Jung’s belief in the human soul .

58. The man who does not perceive the drama of his own end is not in normality but in pathology, and he should lie down on the stretcher and let himself be cured

Death is something that causes most people some kind of concern since it ultimately involves facing the unknown and the end of life.

59. Everything depends on how we see things, and not on the way they are in themselves

Our perception of things determines how we act and what they mean for us. It is our view of them that determines what the facts mean, not what they actually are.

60. Knowledge is not only based on truth but also on error

To err is a normal thing and it is an opportunity. Making mistakes is necessary to learn and develop . One of Carl Jung’s most inspiring sentences.

61. We are born at a given time when this takes place and like good wines we have the qualities of the year and the season in which we came into this world. Astrology should not justify anything else

Astrology is another field in which Jung showed interest, linking it to the existence of some innate characteristics in people. This, among other things, takes Jung away from science.

62. Often the hands will solve a mystery with which the intellect has struggled in vain

Jung indicates in this sentence that the intellect is not everything, and that often our body and our instinct can give an answer to that which reason does not reach.

63. Through pride we deceive ourselves. But deep below the surface of average consciousness a soft, gentle voice tells us that something is out of tune

Pride is just a way of trying to deceive yourself even though deep down we know you are not acting right or true.

64. From the middle of life onward, only he who is prepared to die alive remains vital

Aging sometimes induces us to worry and focus on death and what might happen instead of living in it and trying to follow our nature,

65. We need to learn that the giver of all things resides within us. This is a truth which, in the face of all evidence, in things great and small, is never known, though it is often so necessary, even vital, for us to know

It is we ourselves who live our lives, and our actions that govern them.

66. It is surprising that man, the instigator, inventor and vehicle of all these events, the author of all the judgments and decisions and the planning of the future, is so negligent

Human beings have made great discoveries and have developed a great deal of skills, knowledge, technologies and forms of expression. However, human nature is negligent and often neglects essential aspects, including itself.

67. In science, we must always be attentive to the fact that there are human veils that hide the abysmal darkness of the unknown

In this sentence Jung talks about the possibility of finding biases and even interests in the investigations that are carried out and that can compromise the results.

68. The human being who promises everything is certain to do nothing, and everyone who promises too much is in danger of using diabolical means to carry out his promises and is already on the road to perdition

We cannot commit ourselves to everything and everyone, and anyone who does so too much will either have to break his or her commitment or use means that are harmful to himself or herself and/or others, and wear himself or herself out.

69. The erotic instinct belongs to the original nature of man… It is related to the highest form of spirit

Although Jung did not consider sex to be the main engine of human behavior, sexuality and sensuality are an important part of the human being, linking eroticism to spirituality.

70. It is much better to take things as they come along with patience and equanimity

What happens to us is not always controllable no matter how much we worry, so it is much more adaptive to be able to tolerate uncertainty and accept what may come.

71. There is no language that cannot be misunderstood. Each interpretation is hypothetical, as it is a simple attempt to read an unknown text

It all depends on how we look at things. No matter how objective something may seem, others will always interpret it in their own way and may reach different conclusions regarding the same reality.

72. Without playing with fantasy no creative work has ever been born. The debt we owe to the work of imagination is incalculable

Creativity and the unconscious are always deeply linked, and thanks to this we can develop and generate new content and elements.

73. The small world of childhood with its family environment is a model of the world. The more intensely the family forms its character, the better the child will adapt to the world

The family environment is the one that provides us with values and the one that educates and prepares us to see the outside world. This is something of great importance in order to be able to forge a good adaptation to it.

74. The great decisions of human life have as a rule much more to do with instincts and other mysterious unconscious factors than with conscious will and a sense of reasonableness

When it comes to making decisions, we tend to reflect to a great extent on the pros and cons of each option, but generally instinct ends up driving us to make a specific choice.

75. The worst thing that can happen to anyone is to be completely understood

A reflection on the fact that the complete understanding of something or someone can be inconvenient both for the one who understands and for the one who does, but especially for the former.

76. No Awareness Without Pain

Feeling pain is inevitable, and it helps us to be aware of ourselves and our relationship with reality and our own self.

77. All of mythology can be understood as a kind of projection of the collective unconscious. We can see this more clearly when we look at the stellar constellations, those originally chaotic forms were organized through the projection of images. This explains the influence of the stars as the astrologers assert. These influences are nothing less than unconscious and introspective perceptions of the Collective Unconscious

The collective unconscious, the images and concepts inherited and passed on from generation to generation, is an important part of the psyche for Jung. He considers that from these images come the archetypes, interiorized images of our own nature, and that from it the myths and legends of each people have been forged.

78. The wine of adolescence does not always clear up as the years go by, sometimes it becomes cloudy

Time per se does not have to heal the wounds or improve the aspects of each person, but it is the performance that does it.

79. Astrology represents the sum of all psychological knowledge of antiquity

Again we can see that for Jung astrology is an important element, since it reflects the beliefs and what the ancients knew about the psyche.

80. As far as we can reach, the only meaning of human existence consists in turning on a light in the darkness of mere being

Finding ourselves and living according to what and how we are is for Jung the main meaning of life.