Some People are from Mars and Some People are from Venus!


Some People are from Mars and Some People are from Venus!

The psychologist C. G. Jung recognised that there are common themes found in the minds of human beings from all over the world. It is as though there is a bed rock foundation of the human psyche which is common to every human being who ever existed. Jung referred to this vast primal mind as the collective unconscious.

Specific elemental aspects of consciousness arise out of the collective and these fundamental elements of the psyche are known as archetypes. Jung said, "The archetypes are essentially, the chthonic portion of the psyche … that portion through which the psyche is attached to Nature." So the archetypes live deep down in the unconscious close to the activity of the reptilian brain that controls the autonomic functioning of the systems of the body - the drawing of breath, the beating of the heart.

For example, we each have our own personal story around the nature of the relationship with our parents but the archetypes of the Mother and the Father are universal images rooted deep in human consciousness.

Well, I thought that was a fairly safe thing to say but when I mentioned this idea to my sons it developed into a long discussion about gender stereo-typing. These days a person can grow up in a family with a single parent or with one male one female parent or with parents of the same sex, trans gender parents or not knowing their biological parents at all. We are living through times of great change and our cultural ideas around what constitutes 'Mother' and 'Father' are in flux. Is it possible that we will create new archetypes as we move through the age of gender neutral Aquarius?

Maybe. But an archetype is something that arises in the depths of the unconscious. It is close to instinctive, unchangeable biological imperatives, it's existence dates back to the birth of humanity and it precedes and pre-empts our individual personal stories, preferences and cultural shifts. The only way to get to live on this planet is to start with a sperm from a man and an egg from a woman. So there is some profound but unconscious way in which we all share the experience of this universal biological fact. In the ancient Chinese text the I Ching, the first two hexagrams are Ch'ien the Creative - the masculine principle which directs energy outward and takes action, and K'un the Receptive - the feminine principle which takes energy inward and receives and contains it. I believe these are two fundamental archetypes and that the sense of a Yin and a Yang, of feminine and masculine aspects of consciousness is deeply rooted in the human psyche.

It may well be that a person born into a male body will want their life to be an exploration of Yin, feminine energy and a person born into a female body may want to explore the expression of Yang, masculine energy or any mixture of both and this should not present a problem to anyone who believes in freedom. But I feel the archetypes of the Masculine and the Feminine are a real and a beautiful thing. So we could say that some people are from Mars and some people are from Venus but wherever the individual lives on that spectrum, the underlying archetypes of Mars and Venus remain.

There are many other archetypes e.g. those that represent the stages of life such as the Child, the Lover and the Elder or those that express needs such as the urge to communicate, the instinctual drives such as sexuality and aggression and survival.

In the study of astrology it is clear that the planets of the horoscope are symbols of archetypal principles. When we look into space and observe the physical form of the solar system we can see how the Sun, born from the infinite void sits at the centre generating a field of light and elemental chemicals from which life on Earth was created and we can see each of the planets embodying an archetypal principle, an essential element in the chemistry of life.

Some form of astrology is found in every culture across the Earth. In ancient times, shamans, priests and priestesses living close to Nature recognised the archetypal energies brought by the 'wondering stars', which are named after the gods and goddesses of the cultures of our ancestors.

"As above, so below". As well as functioning in the depths of the instincts of the body the archetypes also speak to us from the heavens, from the realms of Spirit and the archetypal energy of the planets can be perceived as specific patterns of light and colour and feeling running through the energy field of every person. Several times, in sessions with clients I have heard a person speak with the voice of an archetype, for example the archetype of Mercury coming through a man who was a poet and an actor and took on the authority of the Herald speaking passionately about truth.

We human are so much more powerful than we realise. In our everyday lives, we move around weaving our own unique and poignant stories most of the time unconscious that we are dancing with the archetypal drives of the planets. When we look at a person's horoscope we can see what is going on and how the energy flows or gets obstructed in the relationships between the mighty planets. We see the rising waves of a storm approaching, we see the sky light up with opportunity, we can see the turmoil of death and birth and the quiet places of stillness and harmony.

Without fail, I find that people love to hear the story of their own horoscope and to understand which of the archetypes is calling to them. The archetypes root us into the depths of the Earth and they are also our bridge to the stars - helping us to remember who we are and illuminating the path our Souls have come to follow.