My Red Book: Introduction and the Mystery of the Snow Covered Lodge
an introduction into my Red Book, the purpose, vision one, and the interpretation
Hello everyone, I hope had a wonderful week! Welcome to my introduction to my Red Book…
Explanation of The Red Book
The Lodge on the Mountain
Thank you for your support! Let’s enter the labyrinth…
Introduction to The Red Book (The Labyrinth)
I want to begin with a disclaimer:
Everything I speak about in these posts about my personal Red Book is not me claiming I have any special abilities, I will never claim to talk with beings separate from my mind, nor when I speak about spirits, beings, or Gods am I assuming an external reality for them. These are expressions and experiences of my mind through my own dreams and visions—we all have them—I’m simply expressing mine through this method.
This is my means of expressing my vulnerability, and I wish to motivate others to find their own means of expression.
And allow me to begin with a quote from Carl Jung’s Red Book…
“Be silent and listen: have you recognized your madness and do you admit it? Have you noticed that all your foundations are completely mired in madness? Do you not want to recognize your madness and welcome it in a friendly manner? You wanted to accept everything. So accept madness too. Let the light of your madness shine, and it will suddenly dawn on you. Madness is not to be despised and not to be feared, but instead you should give it life...If you want to find paths, you should also not spurn madness, since it makes up such a great part of your nature...Be glad that you can recognize it, for you will thus avoid becoming its victim.
Madness is a special form of the spirit and clings to all teachings and philosophies, but even more to daily life, since life itself is full of craziness and at bottom, utterly illogical. Man strives toward reason only so that he can make rules for himself. Life itself has no rules. That is its mystery and its unknown law. What you call knowledge is an attempt to impose something comprehensible on life.”
My book, which I’m expressing through these posts, is a personal examination of my psyche, welcome.
But first, what is Carl Jung’s Red Book?
Well, it’s the personal examination of Jung’s personal psyche. His only personal tool or bible into his creative mind. Through his examination, he encounters parts of him and a collective unconscious within himself through dreams and visions. For him, this included moments where the contents of his unconscious mind forced themselves into his conscious spectrum.
Thus, after reading the Red Book for a second time, I finally felt the urge to create my own. As Carl Jung asked all of his patients to do. Thus, I’ll also be examining myself through much of the same means—creative expression based on my visions and dreams, and finding those unconscious contents. I’ll be mostly sharing my visions, dreams, and my interpretations of them. However, the drawings will come when I’m more comfortable with my expression of them. At the moment, my writing allows me to provide more of an accurate representation of my psyche.
Now, I feel compelled to provide a couple of clarifiers…
I’m not a Jungian or a “disciple” of his. I think he got many things wrong, as he would admit himself, yet I find his methods of examining the psyche helpful. Also, I enjoy reading his work, and I do believe there’s profound wisdom and understanding of the self to be found inside the depths of ourselves by utilizing the means Jung spoke about.
There’s wisdom to be found in finding our way in creating our method of individuation. In the case of myself, the written form with the occasional drawing is something I connect with, thus I want to take the journey.
What are my other motivations?
I enjoy doing interpretations of my dreams, visions, and unconscious/subconscious thoughts that come about throughout various moments, nights, and times in my day-to-day. I find it meaningful and important to cultivate an understanding of these moments to better understand the mechanisms of my own mind.
And in this process, I hope to help others do the same.
Now, I’ll be gradually explaining this process throughout…
Part of this process is symbol creation for a sense of meaning-making…
Examples for me (and stuff you will probably read about throughout this process):
Ravens: often, when I encounter these beautiful creatures, it leads me down a new pattern of thinking that alters my perspective.
The black-haired, blue-eyed woman that routinely shows up in my visions and dreams (my anima?).
Egyptian imagery that I’ve never studied or heard of popping into my visions and dreams.
Nordic mythology: I routinely have visions of an Odin like figure that comes in (often connects with the Ravens).
Also, I might call my Red Book, The Labyrinth.
I’m allowing these expressions of me to come out, as they want out, but it’s hard for me to say they are me. Why? It’s as though they are other versions of me or expressions. Thus, like Jung, I want to have a dialogue with my inner psyche.
Essentially, this becomes about diving into my unconscious mind. And in the process of doing that, I hope it sublimely brings you along for the ride…
So this is where I say: Enter at your own risk.
It’s a voyage of discovery into the deepest depths of my subconscious and unconscious. I hope you enjoy it.
The Lodge on the Mountain
“Some people never go crazy. What truly horrible lives they must live” —Charles Bukowski
Madness marked the death of my youthful ignorance; and with it, the death of true sanity. Yet, knowing this, we are pulled to shun acts of supposed insanity. When we witness the madness of others, we become one with the absurd.
Our grasp at sanity becomes done or undone through our own tunneling of chaos. But what awaits beyond the tunnel?
So, maybe this book is about rebelling against my own madness, where I choose not to despise or fear it. This book becomes my method of giving my madness alife, an outlet, and a place to be understood.
There’s the mystery, giving a voice to the incomprehensible by imposing life into it to provide even a slight bit of comprehensibility—even if it’s for only a moment.
To free myself from the madness, the spirit must come out.
My feet are frozen, stuck in place like concrete as they stand placed on a mountain side. I'm left stranded, naked, confused, but curious. The snow is all around me, the world silent and still. I find myself looking up at the mountain in front of me—the snow-covered peaks stretching out for miles behind it. I'm reminded that I'm alone with only myself—myself and my thoughts. But then suddenly I feel the urge to look down the summit, maybe taking a moment before my ascent; I see a light. The human-shaped figure is moving towards me, as they continue closer the darkness fades as they ascend into sight.
Finally, I see them. She stood there before me with her dark hair and piercing blue eyes, dressed in black and much more prepared for the weather than I. The woman had returned. The recurring woman that soon I must name. She stood there and reminded me, merely with her presence, that I am not alone. Warmth flooded my naked body as she moved closer to me, her long black hair was tied up into a messy ponytail with strands falling around her face like wisps of smoke, enhancing her piercing stare.
I have found it difficult to look into her eyes for fear that they will pull me in. Yet, her eyes have spoken to me without words ever being said. She grabs my hand, never having touched me before. And as she stares at me with those eyes, her other arm points up the mountain. I see a single house with a single light. I look back to the woman, she looks at me and nods, before giving me her smirk, almost devilish—and then disappears.
The snow is howling against me, whipping against my body and hair mercilessly, but the house atop the mountain beckons me forward. So I climb forward with hopes this place will allow me to make sense of my confusion, but the snow kept blowing around me as I trudged through knee-high drifts to find my way closer to the cabin. But as I approach the snow-covered cabin there's this feeling of dread that comes over me, almost all-consuming. Yet, I found myself compelled to enter.
As I enter, I see a figure standing over the roaring fireplace…
I step inside, yet do not feel any warmth, but then I remember, although I was naked and perceived my frozen feet outside—I never felt the mountainside's cold kiss. And then a moment passed, I was no longer naked, but now clothed. My attention quickly turned back towards the being by the fireplace, a strange figure it was. They were a light figure, shaped like a human with no face nor facial features.
Yet, their presence alone had an emotional impact on me—one second, dread comes over me, and in the next—hope takes its place. As I walk closer to the figure, my fear turned into curiosity at the strangeness of this being and the strangeness of my situation, some awareness came over me.
The being looked at me and said, “why did you enter here?”
At the time I was confused, only after this vision could I make sense of it, and even then it feels merely like only a partial interpretation.
I responded, “I don’t know. I don’t even know where here is.”
I felt despair off the being…
Why do you seek madness?
Throughout this vision, I barely did any speaking, I only had thoughts stream into my mind soon after. A time for organizing and processing. But the being’s words crept up on me like a shadow in the night and left me feeling alone, confused, and isolated from life itself.
I’m reminded of those moments where you awake, where I have this feeling invade my thoughts. Sometimes we don’t know if we should call this feeling a voice, and if that voice in our head is a hero or, as some say, it’s the devil. I perceive it as both, because when you awake and look at yourself in the mirror that’s where madness waits.
Although, even upon writing this expression, I’m reminded of the words from the being in my vision…
Why do you seek madness?
A moment came, a realization, that what I had been perceiving wasn’t just an inner monologue of sorts, but seemingly articulate words describing an inner perception, or possibly a memory. And then the question became again, does madness await? So, I wrote, to keep that madness at bay.
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