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Memories, Dreams, Reflections - School Years-5-C.G.Jung

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Memories, Dreams, Reflections - School Years-5-C.G.Jung

What had led me astray during the crisis was my passion for being alone, my delight in solitude. Nature seemed to me full of wonders, and I wanted to steep myself in them. Every stone, every plant, every single thing seemed alive andescribably marvelous. I immersed myself in nature, crawled as it were, into the very essence of nature and away from the whloe human world.
I had another important experience at about this time. I was taking the long road to school from Klein-Huningen, where we lived, to Basel, when sufddenly for a single moment I had the overwhelming impression of having just emerged from a dense cloud.

I knew all at once: now I am myself. It was as if a wall of mist were at my back, and behind that wall there was not yet an "I". But at this moment I came upon myself. Previously I had existed, too, but everything had merely happened to me.

Now I happened to myself. Now I knew: I am myself now, now I exist. Previously I had been willed to do this and that; now I willed. This experience seemed to me tremendously important and new: there was "authirity" in me. Curiously enough, at this time and also during the months of my fainting neurosis I had lost all memory of the treasures in the attic.Otherwise I would probably have realized even then the analogy between my feeling of authority and the feeling of value which the treasure inspired in me. But that was not so; All memory of the pencil case had vanished.

Around this time I was invited to spend the holidays with friends of the family who had a house on lake Lucerne. To my delight the house was situated right on the lake, and there was a boathouse and a row boat.
My host allowed his son and me to use the boat, although we were sternely warned not to be reckless. Unfortunately I also knew how to steer a Waidling ( a boat of the gondola type)-that is to say standing.At home we had such a punt, in which we had tried every imaginable trick.

The first thing I did, therefore was to take my stand on the stern seat and with one oar push into the lake. That was too much for the anxious master of the house. He whistled us back and gave me a first class dressing-down. I was thouroughly crest-fallen but had to admit that I had done exactly what he had said not to, and that his lecture was quite justified.
At the same time I was seized with rage that this fat , ignorant boor should dare to insult Me. This Me was not only grown up, but important, an authority, a person with office and dignity, an old man, and object of respect and awe.

Yet the contrast with reality was so grotesque that in the midst of my fury I suddenly stopped myself, for the question rose to my lips:" Who in the world are you, anyway? You are reacting as though you were the devil only knows how importent! And yet you know he is perfectly right. You are barely twelve years old, a schoolboy, and he is a father, and a rich powerful man besides, who owns two houses and several splendid horses,"

Then, to my intense confusion, it occured to me that I was actually two different persons. One of them was the schoolboy who could not grasp algebra and was far from sure of himself; the other was important a high authority, a man not to be trifled with, as powerful and influential as this manufacturer.The "other" was an old man who lived in the eighteenth century, wore buckled shoes and a white wig and went driving in a fly with high, concave rear wheels between which the box was suspended on spring and leather straps.

This notion sprang from a curious experience I had had . When we were living in Klein-Hunigen an ancient green carriage from the Black Forest drove past our house one day. It was truly an antique, looking exactly as if it had come straight out of the eighteenth century. When I saw it, I felt with great excitment :"That's it! sure enough, that comes from my times". It was as though I had recognized it because it was the same type as the one I had driven in myself.

Then came a curious sentiment ecoeurant, as though someone had stolen something from me, or as though I had been cheated-cheated out of my beloved past. The carriage was a relic of those times! I cannot describe what was happening in me or what it was that affected me so strongly:a longing, a nostalgia, or a recognitionthat kept saying, "yes, that's how it was! Yes that's how it was!" I had still another experience that harked back to the eighteenth century. At the home of one of my aunts, I had seen an eighteenth century statuette, and old terra-cota piece consisting of two painted figures. One of them was old Dr.Stuckelberger, a well-known personality. The other figue was a patient of his; she was depicted with closed eyes, sticking out her tongue.

The story went that dear old Stuckelberger was one day crossing the Rhine bridge when this annoying patient suddenly came up to him out of nowhere and babbled out a complaint . Old Stuckelberger said testily, "Yes , yes there must be something wrong with you. Put out your tongue and shut your eyes,". The woman did so, and Stuckelberger instantly ran off, and she remained standing there with her tongue stuck out, while the people laughted.

This statuette of the old doctor had buckled shoes which in a strange way I recognized as my oiwn. I was convinced that these were shoes I had worn. The conviction drove me wild with excitment. " Why, those must be my shoes!" I could still feel those shoes on my feet, and yet I could not explain where this crazy feeling came from. I could not understand this identity I felt with the eighteenth century. Often in thode days I would write the date 1786 instead of 1886, and each time this happened I was overcome by an inexplicable nostalgia.

Reference: Memories, Dreams Reflections: C.G.Jung

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