“Jung and Conscious Aging: Journeys, Thresholds, Tapestries”
with Teresa Arendell, PhD
Four Tuesdays, 7-9 pm, March 14, 21, 28, and April 4
“The afternoon of life is just as full of meaning as the morning; only, its meaning and purpose are different….” – C. G. Jung, CW7, par. 114
“Old age holds ‘the golden years’.” “Aging is not for sissies.” In this course we explore these and other cultural paradoxes about life’s later years through the prism of Carl Jung’s theory and practice. Jung viewed old age as a time of dynamic creativity, encompassing internal growth, spiritual deepening, and the securing of meaning, as well as years of physical decline and inevitable losses.
Together we consider mythologies of the cycle of life and its end phases, archetypal images of the wise old man and wise old woman, and contemporary cultural depictions of the elderly as disillusioned and disappointed. We delve into personal attitudes, beliefs, and experiences. Dreams and other fantasy materials are invited into our conversations. Recent scientific findings regarding the aging process and old age are brought into our discussions. We consider aging as a significant phase in the individuation process—the life-long process of Self-realization.
Teresa Arendell, Ph.D., IAAP, is a Maine-based Jungian analyst. A college professor in sociology for more than three decades, she’s held multiple postdoctoral fellowships, including one at UCSF in aging and life course development. She’s taught and offered lectures and seminars and served on committees at the Brunswick Maine Jung Center, the C.G. Jung Institute, Boston, and other Jungian associations. She’s published widely in studies of families, genders, sexualities, aging, and continues to work on a book-length manuscript exploring the significance of Jungian thought and practice in climate change and the wild and wilderness: Jung, Nature, Psyche – and the Wild. She relishes life in Maine and seeks openness to and equanimity in the vagaries of the aging process.