This darker aspect of the feminine has throughout history been both feared and sought after, both hated and admired. The Black Madonna of Einsiedeln stands among the many Black Virgins that seem to imagistically express this dark side of the feminine in a creative transformational manner for both the individual and the collective.
Beginning with a history of the Einsiedeln Madonna, Dr. Gustafson broadens his analysis into a psychological and historical examination of the Black Madonna, from her roots in the pagan deity Lilith and the archetype of the Great Mother, to her resurgence as the Virgin in the Middle Ages, to her life today as the unheeded unconscious archetype of the feminine.
Fred Gustafson, author of Dancing Between Two Worlds: Jung and the Native American Soul and editor of The Moonlit Path: Reflections on the Dark Feminine, lectures widely and has a full practice as both analytical psychologist and pastoral counselor. Dr. Gustafson is a graduate of the C.G. Jung Institute in Zurich and is also an ordained minister.
Though C.G.Jung and Pierre Teilhard de Chardin never met, their independent intellectual inquiries and courageous researches pushed the personal and collective soul forward and placed both of them at the foreground of needing to understand and integrate on a planetary level the core values of their expansive work.
Both Jung and de Chardin were concerned with science and religion and operated within these paradigms. Both of them shook the world by offering up views, on one hand, of the profound depths of the human psyche and, on the other, presenting a profound re-consideration of evolution as a process leading toward a social unification of the planet.
One used the concept of individuation, the other spoke of evolution. Each took these concepts to a creative depth so much so that the world they lived in either deeply admired or detested them. Both had conflicts in their chosen fields. Jung was a psychologist who used the field of science to explore the religious depths of the human soul by studying mythology, world religions, folk tales, dreams, and human behavior. Chardin used the ground of religion to work in the field of science via paleontology, geology, and physics as he explored a deeper and relevant understanding of evolution.
Though each began from different intellectual platforms, they each crisscrossed into the other’s territory of inquiry and related their ideas to include the full scope of humanity. One went deeply into soul and found matter, whereas, the other went deeply into matter and found soul. In their own ways both spent their careers trying to heal the split between spirit and matter in the weltanschauung of their times reflected in the human psyche and in the general religious views permeating most of Western culture.