A Soulful Approach to Imaginal Research

While knowing the work of Carl Jung is not essential it can help you understand your path.

This page is for those who want to dive deeper into the soul & Jung.

*Please remember that it is the soul we follow and Jung is one example.


A path to Self-realization and wholeness.

“There is only one way and it is your way.”

Find you soul. Find your Self.


“My friend it is wise to nourish your soul.”  Your soul will set you free 


"I am not what happened to me. I am what I choose to become."  This is a process of self-creation and self-determination

An Archetypal and Jungian Approach to Imaginal Research

Jung taught this artistic path to his advanced patients and found it to be an invaluable and archetypal or universal, innate process. On this journey, Jung referred to art as a healing and a teaching and the artist was a creator and educator. Yet, “despite the fact” that he “so often traveled this path with individual patients,” he lamented that he had not “succeeded in making the process clear to a wider circle and in working it up in a form suitable for publication,” something that was “accomplished only in a fragmentary way." This online learning platform helps to bring Jung's path to the wider circle of the earth in service to the soul he served.

This coursework is designed to help bring the soul’s archetypal, creative path out into the world, while providing containment for those who walk upon it. This is a soul path that leads people who are ready for “invaluable growth,” “independence,” and “maturity.” It leads to the center of your being and to deeper meaning--but it also leads, at times, away from societal values.

Many of my more advanced patients, then, begin to paint . . . it must be remembered that we are speaking not of people who have still to prove their social usefulness, but of those who can no longer find significance in their value to society, and who have come upon the deeper and more dangerous question of the meaning of their individual lives. To be a particle in a mass has meaning and charm only for the man who has not yet advanced to that stage, but none for the man who has experienced it to satiety. The importance of individual life may always be denied by the ‘educator’ whose pride it is to breed mass-men. But any other person will sooner or later be driven to find this meaning in himself.”

Though I use Jung as an example, you do not need to know or learn about Jungian psychology. This is about you and your journey, an archetypal soul's journey of Self-discovery. Each step is your own.


Artistic Individuation and Therapy

“Like a tired wanderer who had sought nothing in the world apart from her, shall I come closer to my soul."  

This process is about finding and embodying your soul and realizing that you are a symbol of your soul.


“When a patient has seen once or twice how he is freed from a wretched state of mind by working at a symbolic picture, he will thenceforward turn to this means of release whenever things go badly with him." 


This is a path that helps us move together from darkness to light. 


“What is essential in a work of art is that it should rise far above the realm of the personal life and speak from the spirit and the heart . . . as man to the spirit and heart of mankind.” 

In walking this collective path, we serve as collective humanity, evolving the psyche or soul through the ages. 

“It is not a question of art—or rather it should not be a question of art—but of something more, something other than mere art: namely the living effect upon the patient himself.”

Jung referred to this process as "self-education" in which "the horizon of modern psychology is immeasurably widened," adding that: "The medical diploma is no longer the crucial thing, but human quality instead.” Through this process, he said that: "All the implements of psychotherapy developed in clinical practice, refined and systematized, are now put at our service and can be used for our self-education and self-perfecting." Going on to declare that this process could free the patient (you in this case) from a "morbid dependence" upon the analyst, the Soul of Creativity offers a path to freedom. It is a series of courses to help find the hidden artist within and resurrect them from the depths. Exploring what Jung referred to as his technique and method, these courses are paths or pathways that descend into the unconscious in search of the soul’s hidden treasure. On this journey, the artist serves themselves and the soul as “collective” and “higher” humanity. Through their art the artist heals the psychic disturbances within themselves and within the world. Jung referred to this art-based process as a healing and teaching in which the artist is a creator and an educator who returns to nature from within and a means of atonement through LOVE.

"The creative mind plays with the object it loves."


Speaking of this art-based process, Jung said: “In this way something invaluable is won, namely a growth of independence, a step towards psychological maturity. The patient can make himself creatively independent by this method . . . He is no longer dependent on his dreams or on his doctor’s knowledge, but can give form to his own inner experience by painting it.”


“I wish to produce an effect...the effort to give visible form to the image enforces a study of it in all its parts, so that in this way its effects can be completely experienced. The discipline of drawing endows the fantasy with an element of reality” and the artist is “freed from a wretched state of mind by working at a symbolical picture” and “will thenceforward turn to this means of release whenever things go badly.” 


Critically, in this creativity we serve humanity and nature itself as ensouled. “As a human being he may have moods and a will and personal aims, but as an artist he is ‘man’ in a higher sense—he is ‘collective man’—one who carries and shapes the unconscious, psychic life of mankind... We may therefore readily assume that these pictures originate chiefly in that realm of psychic life which I have called the collective unconscious.”

A Renaissance of the soul's iconography 

"In everything regarding your salvation and the attainment of mercy, you are dependent on your soul."

This Soul of Creativity is soul based because, according to Jung, people “can never enter the collective unconscious but we can send" the soul to “bring us information” and that by making art “with your hands without conscious intent” and then viewing it imaginally, you can “find a vision of the things of the unconscious.” In this creative process the soul becomes “less and less a personification” and “more a function.” She is a way of seeing and knowing, making "suprapersonal connections.” Through art we embody the soul as a way of being. So, the soul is essential to this process, just as Jung began by looking for his soul and she loved being and multiplicity.

"My Soul, where are you? Do you hear me? I speak, I call you--are you there? I have returned, I am here again. I have shaken the dust of all the lands from my feet, and I have come to you, I am with you. After long years of long wandering, I have come to you again . . . "

"I should advise you to put it all down as beautifully as you can in some beautifully bound book…Then when these things are in some precious book you can go to the book & turn over the pages &for you it will be your church—your cathedral—the silent places of your spirit where you will find renewal…for in that book is your soul.”

Eros or Embodied Love

In a fundamental way this art-based path returns to the embodied nature of the soul grounded in the natural world. This is a creative knowledge not found in any book or the mouth of a teacher but a "knowledge of the heart" known to our ancestors who lived in right relationship with nature, connecting through their nature to the world around them. This is a knowledge and love that is not tame but wild--natural. While Jung described the knowledge of his soul and the spirit of the depths in terms of the heart, experiencing love as his crowning achievement in The Red Book and at the end of his life, for me the knowledge of the heart was embodied in a return to the wild of my nature and Mother Nature or the natural world. Over and over, I was reminded to drop into my heart as a knowing organ of perception and bring my conscious awareness to reside in this place of embodied love, like Jung's crown declaring: "love never ends."

"We cannot change anything unless we accept it. Where love rules, there is no will to power . . ." 

C G Jung

The "enlightening thought comes from the body."
This is a wisdom path and tradition that remembers the past and past gnosis.

This process is fundamentally embodied as gnosis or direct experiential knowing. Jung’s soul entered his body and the body of his art throughout this process, saying that “in that book [what his soul called art] is your soul.” He let her enter him to use his speech centers, and drink from his heart’s blood in a form of communion throughout TRB. The soul entered and inhabited the body, declaring: “Your body remains with you, my beloved, your living body. The enlightening thought comes from the body," and Jung acknowledged that “Eros [love] cannot exist without the flesh. In resisting the inferiority of the flesh, the I resists its female soul.”

“The spirit of the depths even taught me to consider my action and my decision as dependent on dreams. Dreams pave the way for life, and they determine you without you understanding their language. One would like to learn this language, but who can teach and learn it? Scholarliness along is not enough: there is a knowledge of the heart that gives deeper insight. The knowledge of the heart is in no book and is not to be found in the mouth of any teacher, but grows out of you life the green seed from the dark earth. Scholarliness belongs to the spirit of this time, but this spirit in no way grasps the dream, since the soul is everywhere that scholarly knowledge is not. But how can I attain the knowledge of the heart? You can attain this knowledge only by living your life to the full. You live your life fully if you also live what you have never yet lived, but have left for others to live or to think.” 


In other words: This process helps us  know, heal and create ourselves. 

Alchemical Gnosis

Gnosis is direct embodied knowing in which spirit is embodied and known from within. It is mediated by the soul but not by an outside agent. As Jung's soul said, it is in no book or the mouth of any teacher but in the HEART and the BODY.

"To the extent that I managed to translate the emotions into images . . . I was inwardly calmed and reassured. Had I left those images hidden in the emotions, I might have been torn to pieces by them."

Recovering Your Soul

Jung taught of the magical Value of Art. Jung spoke of the “magical value" of art, adding that it was the “communication between yourself and your other side [soul]” that leads to a “development” in which the soul “becomes less” a “personification” and instead “a function."

If you want to create yourself, then you do not begin with the best and the highest, but with the worst and the deepest."

Soul Making

 Through this process, the artist also created themselves, as Jung told Morgan: “You are creating yourself by this [art-based methodology]. You are creating the moral solution for yourself,” concluding:


“Go . . . follow along with them [personified images of the soul] and soon they will bring you to the fitting form for your unconscious” in art.

"In everyone some kind of artist is hiding." C.G. JUNG


Heather is an artist who loves to explore art and education as a creative path to transformation and revelation. She is inspired by our collective human potential and how we can catalyze personal passion into powerful and sustainable collective change. She has a doctoral degree in art as an archetypal process of individuation (transformation) at Pacifica Graduate Institute and the website and are a result of her study on Jung and his art-based methodology.

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© 2019 by Anna