Jung’s Theory of Active Imagination and The Shadow: An Interview with Anna Guerra

Anna Guerra is a depth psychotherapist in private practice. She teaches a manifold of class topics related to Jung’s Analytical Psychology at the Jung Center of Houston, from Jung’s theory of complexes, shadow, and archetypes, to his technique of Active Imagination and dream-work. Anna’s classes, and therapeutic practice, are often focused on bringing unconscious contents to conscious awareness. “We all have what Jung called the shadow parts of ourselves. These are parts of ourselves that have been deemed unacceptable, and that we repress because they’ve been unacceptable to our parents, to our schools or other influences as we were growing up. These parts of us are not always bad or unhealthy, and the reintegration of them can actually have an enlivening quality. Sometimes we feel deadened and not whole because there’s parts of us that have been relegated to the shadow. So it’s important to recognize that there is such a thing, and to work towards bringing these into a more integrated sense of self. You see that people coming to the Jung Center for a while accept themselves more and more, and start to embrace that idea of wholeness and authenticity.”

Jung’s theories of the mind serves not only those who are experiencing illness. “So much happens outside of our conscious awareness. Getting to know how to access those parts is significant to functioning better, can improve our relationships, and impacts our psychic economy. Jung’s theory of complexes and his techniques for accessing our unconscious selves are particularly helpful in becoming aware of what is driving us.”

 

Watch a video of this interview here!

Full interview transcript