Jung and Christology

Volume 25
Winter 1997
Jung and Christology

Can Jungian thought help revitalize Christology for modern believers? First, a survey of Jung'€™s comments on Jesus shows his portrayal of a charismatic young rabbi who came to embody the cardinal archetype of the Self. But he lost contact with his shadow side (the figure of Satan thus gaining differentiation) and on the cross was forsaken by Yahweh. So the incarnation, incomplete in Jesus, yearns for fulfillment through the individuation ("€œChristification"€) of each Christian. Second, a mixed evaluation seems required by theology. Jung offers valuable resources to Christology by his depiction of Jesus'€™ suffering and true humanity in a cross-cultural setting and by his summons to a responsible imitatio Christi. But theology must object to Jung'€™s idiosyncratic exegesis, his docetic figure of Christ, the absence of any resurrection, and the disjuncture of Jesus both from earthly evil and from a sadistic God of wrath.

Dr. G.C. Chapman
414 - 426
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