ABSTRACT

This chapter investigates the complex phenomenology of violence as it manifests in the collective and in the psychology of the individual. Bringing together personal and archetypal perspectives of violence, along with material from mythology, dreams, cultural, alchemical, and analytic material, the contention is made that violence is a vital, and at times useful, aspect of human nature. Material is presented to show how violence is linked to the imagery and functions of sacrifice. In this way, violence is demonstrated to be an essential component of what Jung describes as the religious instinct.