Fourth Annual CGJIC Conference

June 1-3, 2017

Keynote Address: INTERESTING TIMES presented by Jeff Raff

There is an ancient Chinese curse that says, “May you live in interesting times.” We live in very interesting times currently with all the possibilities for disaster or progress such times entail.  The questions I will address have no one definitive answer, and I offer my answers as ones of only several possibilities.  Current events invite us to re-examine Jung’s perspective on the collective and its dangers.  Is Jung’s approach still relevant or do we need to find a new approach possibly more suitable to our times?  Is individuation possible in an unstable collective environment?  I shall discuss these questions as well as the issue of finding an appropriate response to current events that is not only ego-based but includes the wisdom of the Self as well.  My goal is to promote further discussion, not to offer definitive answers and it is my hope we can all partake in such further discussion.

“My Story – As Far As I Can Tell” presented by Mark Palmer

Creative Sharing of Individuation Experience.

“The Alchemical Yellow in Dreams and Image”  presented by Nancy Ortenberg

An early 16th century alchemist said, “The yellow dawn is the end of night, and beginning of day, and a mother of the sun.” To these medieval alchemists, color represented the phases of the long process of making gold. The yellow, or citrinitas, is a transition or bridge, coming after the blackness of depression and chaos give way to the white of reflective consciousness and calmness. James Hillman describes it as a slowing down of the inner desire to move quickly to the red (the gold), the fullness of the soul, and carries with it the duality of new life and withering death. Jung points out that the black, white and red are discussed extensively in alchemical texts, yet the yellow, or fourth color, has fallen by the wayside. In her talk, Nancy invites you to move into your imagination and explore the experience of this abandoned fourth as manifested in dreams and image.

Intersecting Stories: A Jungian Musing on Mixed Race, Ethnicity and Religion presented by Christine Chao

In Memories, Dreams and Reflections, Jung wrote: “Individuation means becoming a singular, homogeneous being, and, insofar as “individuality” embraces our innermost, last and incomparable uniqueness, it also implies becoming one’s own self.” As the demographic grows of people who are born into families that are made up of a mix of ethnicities, races and religions, what sorts of issues do they bring into our offices? What sorts of dreams do they have? How do they find their myth? This talk will explore the cultural wounds, conflicts, strengths and resources that are found in the psyche of people from mixed backgrounds as they work to become their unique self.

 The Tree-of-Life and the Wonder-Working Plant presented by Ronda Martin

Throughout time, the tree symbol has embodied the mysteries of the universe and all of creation, the sacredness of the world and its eternal nature. In shamanistic traditions, the tree serves as a bridge between heaven and earth and the material and the spiritual worlds. According to Jung, the tree or “wonder-working plant” is an image that frequently appears in the unconscious as a potent archetypal symbol whose meaning has continued to evolve throughout history. The Tree of Life gloriously appeared to me during a session with the psychoactive plant, ibogaine. Western medicine is turning in new and surprising ways to the healing power of “wonder-working plants” such as the iboga tree and the psychedelic mushroom. This lecture will explore the rich and varied symbol of the tree as well as present the latest in psychedelic treatment modalities from Harvard, NYU and Johns Hopkins with ibogaine and psilocybin.

Seismic Political Shifts: A Panel Addressing Our Country’s Rapidly Changing Political Landscape and Its Effect on the Psyche presented with open discussion by John Todd & Laurel Howe

Our country is currently in the midst of a socio-political enantiodromia. The panel will serve to address this shift by viewing it through a Jungian lens as well as sharing personal and clinical material that sheds light on the psyche’s response to the significant shifts our country is experiencing.