Analytical Psychology and Magick are two halves of the same coin – the one is incomplete without the other. In fact, a large percentage of ancient magical knowledge is being rediscovered and renamed by today’s psychologists for modern times.
There is a widespread belief that psychology has lost contact with real human experience, that there would be no point in asking it to solve major human problems. After Sigmund Freud and his peers arrived on the scene, the clinical model of modern psychology methodically discarded any notion that the human soul was spiritual in nature. Why is the science of psychology incomplete without magick? Because it doesn’t go far enough-it analyzes human thought, motivation, and behavior, but not the human soul. It is “soul-less” and sterile. You won’t find the best descriptions of the human condition in a book on psychology. Look instead to literature, art, poetry, and in certain passages of the world’s holy books:
It is to the literary world, not to psychological science, that you go to learn how to live with people, how to make love, how not to make enemies, to find out what grief does to people, or the stoicism that is possible in the endurance of pain, or how if you’re lucky you may die with dignity; to see how corrosive the effects of jealousy can be, or how power corrupts or does not corrupt. For such knowledge and such understanding of the human species. Try Lear, and Othello, and Hamlet. As a supplement to William James read Henry James, and Jane Austen and Mark Twain. These people are telling us things that are not on science’s program.
Not only is modern clinical psychology detached from the humanities, it is divorced from spirituality. Throughout history humans have forfeited tranquility, comfort, and sometimes life itself for spiritual motives. Spirituality is important to our health and well-being it is so much a part of us that trying to understand human beings without it is like trying to study fish and omitting the fact that they live in water. Unfortunately, many psychotherapists have done just that, persuading themselves and their clients to believe that the spiritual portion of them either does not exist or is irrelevant. Psychology and spirituality should not be separate entities. It is time to tear down the artificial walls that divide them. The various schools of magick and their extensive teachings comprised an enormous body of wisdom that was the forerunner of modern psychology. The ancient art of magic can give back to the modern science of psychology that which it has so unwisely neglected-a systematic practice for addressing the spiritual factor in humans, in a manner that is in accord with modern psychological principles. One of psychology’s founding fathers, Carl Gustav Jung, was aware of this even if some of today’s psychotherapists have forgotten it-a sign hanging above Jung’s office door read: Avocatus Atque Non-Avocatus Deus Aderit ("whether or not he is called, God will be present). Since the goal of both magick and psychotherapy is the well-being of the individual, it is only natural they become re-acquainted with one another. Contemporary psychology must transform itself to include a more holistic approach wherein the physical, psychological, and trans-personal aspects of the individual are all seen as interconnected, and humanity’s need for healing, spirituality, and guidance is respected. If psychology can be compared to a dictionary of words in a specific language (the human psyche), magick can be compared to a book of poetry that makes those words come alive with meaning and relevance in our lives (psychological/ spiritual evolution). Now that we have reprimanded modern psychology for its shortcomings, we can explore some of the monumental contributions it has made to the understanding of the human mind. From there we can explore how psychotherapy and magick can come together to the meaningful enrichment of both and, more importantly, for the benefit and welfare of the individual.