The Self

(Painted with Acrylics and Oil Colors on 70 x 100 cm canvas; find detail shots below)

If a person honestly faces the unconscious soul (without dwelling in subjective thoughts and feelings),  while reflecting upon its utterances, such as dreams and spontaneous fantasies, then sooner or later the image of the self will emerge and gift the possibility of the renewal of life, a sense of meaningfulness and completeness.


The psyche can be compared to a sphere that has a bright field on its surface which represents the consciousness. Accordingly, the consciousness does not make up our whole psyche. The ego is the center of the bright/conscious field (something is only conscious if “I” know it). The self is the core and at the same time the whole sphere, its regulation processes create dreams.

The dark (unlit) part of the sphere represents the subconsciousness. The subconsciousness is the great helper, friend and advisor of the consciousness. We make contact with the subconsciousness mainly through dreams or in the form of sudden, intuitive inspiration.
Human beings are only whole and achieve a sense of meaningfulness and completeness when the consciousness and the subconsciousness have learned to live peacefully with one another and to complement each other. Because the subconsciousness is not just a storage place for the past, but also full of future thoughts and creative ideas. But the subconsciousness shows its creative powers only in connection with the consciousness.
The subconscious is an important part of the psyche, a neutral phenomenon that includes all aspects of human nature: light/dark, good/bad.
Keeping the inner opposites together is one of the most difficult tasks of individuation. At the end of this mental growth process is the center of the soul, a kind of core atom of the soul that creates/arranges dreams: the self; Daimon, Ba-soul, … – whatever you want to call it.

One can define the self as an inner, guiding center that can only be explored through dreams and similar, which indicate that it is striving for an ongoing expansion and maturation of the personality.
Sometimes you “just” have to listen to what the inner wholeness, the self, wants to achieve here in this situation from me or through me. This is the urge for creative uniqueness.


A short explanation of a part of the symbolism of this artwork:

The fox spirit represents the unconscious and its transparent arms are manifestations that become actions. Basically, the self is often represented by a helpful animal, as a kind of symbol for the instinctive basis of the psyche, the instinctive nature and connection to the natural environment.
Therefore, this “core atom of the soul” is in a way interwoven with the whole inner and outer world.

The girl behind the ribs represents the consciousness. The consciousness is limited and only a small part of the self.
The girl is in the process of integrating the unconscious into her life, therefore roots grow out of her back and become wings, the creative sparks (which roots in the unconscious and is nourished by the connection to the consciousness) awakens into a blooming plant.

The butterflies, that the girl’s hair becomes, are sensory impressions, thoughts, sensory overloads that are processed in the unconscious.
Some of the butterflies are integrated shadows (tendencies / … which are not suppressed but consciously viewed and, if necessary, turned into something positive).

The snakes around the hand and on the stones represent different perspectives and interpretations of dreams and reality. (The dream is basically its own interpretation – confusion arises only through the interpretation of subjective symbols)

The landscape represents the inexpressible, unconscious “mood”. The reduced brightness means that the “I” is dimmed and only the inner nature lights up in its own reflection.
In this context, the sun is a round symbol of the natural wholeness that is sought.


Here are some details views:

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