ABSTRACT

The triad appears as "masculine," i.e., as the active resolve or agens whose alchemical equivalent is the "upwelling." In relation to it the dyad is "feminine," the receptive, absorbent patiens, or the material that still has to be formed and impregnated (informatio, impraegnatio). The psychological equivalent of the triad is want, desire, instinct, aggression and determination, whereas the dyad corresponds to the reaction of the psychic system as a whole to the impulse or decision of the conscious mind. This would of course perish of inanition if it did not succeed in overcoming the inertia of the merely natural man and in achieving its object despite his laziness and constant resistance. But by dint of compulsion or persuasion the conscious mind is able to carry through its purpose, and only in the resultant action is a man a living whole and a unity ("In the beginning was the deed," as Faust says) "—provided that the action is the mature product of a process embracing the whole psyche and not just a spasm or impulse that has the effect of suppressing it.