Carl Yung

There is a recurrent theme  across cultures of off-setting forces being required to achieve wholeness.  The feminine and masculine, light and dark, good and evil – all occupying their own dyad akin to the yin-yang of eastern culture. 

Jung felt that western culture/religion had unintentionally pursued a path that was fundamentally unbalanced: the masculine emphasized over the feminine; the light emphasized over the dark – so much so that western religions developed a male deity, entirely asexualized, entirely benevolent.  In fact, he felt they took it so far as to foist all evil onto a separate sub-deity (Lucifer, the devil – the ultimate scapegoat) which was entirely lacking in any goodness and require even purity of thought and desire in it’s practitioners. 

Jung felt that wholeness required acceptance of the fact that we are not wholly anything.  We are benevolence mixed with maleficence; we are masculine mixed with feminine; we are light mixed with dark.  To deny this, he felt, led people to project all of their “darkness” out onto scapegoats in the world at large.  Isn’t it easier to blame X (insert scapegoat group – immigrants, religious minorities, racial minorities, women, etc etc) than to take ownership of our own conflicting desires and drives? 

It should be noted though, accepting that we carry a level of “evil” within us does not mean we act on it.  It is about acceptance of our darkness so that we can manage it in a healthy way, not celebration or indulgence of that darkness. Acknowledging it is the prerequisite to behaving nobly.  As Jung said, “we are not what we say we are, we are what we do.”.