Tuesday, September 4, 2012

Simplest yet most difficult

“But if the doctor wishes to help a human being he must be able to accept him as he is.  And he can do this in reality only when he has already seen and accepted himself as he is.
“Perhaps this sounds very simple, but simple things are always the most difficult.  In actual life it requires the greatest art to be simple, and so acceptance of oneself is the essence of the moral problem and the acid test of one’s whole outlook on life.  That I feed the beggar, that I forgive an insult, that I love my enemy in the name of Christ—all these are undoubtedly great virtues.  What I do unto the least of my brethren, that I do unto them all, that I do unto Christ.  But what if I should discover that the least amongst them all, the poorest of all beggars, the most impudent of all offenders, yea the very fiend himself—that these are within me, and that I myself stand in need of the alms of my own kindness, that I myself am the enemy who must be loved—what then?  Then, as a rule, the whole truth of Christianity is reversed:  there is no more talk of love and long-suffering; we say to the brother within us “Raca,” [moron] and condemn and rage against ourselves.  We hide him from the world, we deny ever having met this least among the lowly in ourselves, and had it been god himself who drew near to us in this despicable form, we should have denied him a thousand times before a single cock had crowed.”

Jung, CW 11, paragraph 520 (with preceding line from ¶ 519)

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