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By John P. Dourley
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Extra resources for Love, Celibacy and the Inner Marriage (Studies in Jungian Psychology, No 29)
After Mechthilde's lifetime, in the later thirteenth and early fourteenth centuries, the Beguine movement was associated with certain radical tendencies in the church which were to provoke official disapproval. Mechthilde herself met with some opposition in her own lifetime, possibly due to some of the more radical positions in her one work in our possession. The work is entitled The Flowing Light of the Godhead. It remained unknown for almost six centuries, until it was rediscovered in the middle of the nineteenth century in the library of the Benedictine monastery at Einsiedeln, not far from Zürich.
Because of this radical subjectivity which relates the individual immediately to the ground of life universal, Jung gives to psychology, as the discipline whose business it is to explore this subjectivity, a certain pre-eminence among the disciplines. 41 If there is some truth in these aspects of Jung's thought, then it would seem that the philosophical search for a human and humanizing truth must turn to an examination of the prerational depths from Page 21 which the conscious mind itself arises.
If we concede to Jung this priority of the interior, two interesting questions then arise in relation to the possibility of healthy celibacy. Is it possible to lead a healthy psychic and so spiritual life without a relationship to the truth and power of the contrasexual? And secondly, can the relationship to the anima or animus be realized without projecting it onto a person in the external world? I think Jung's position on the first question is obvious and need not delay us. He would deny categorically the possibility of psychic health without an adequate relationship to the contrasexual.