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CANCELLED Lecture: Spiritual Democracy, Jung, and the American Psyche

March 13, 2020 - March 14, 2020


Jung described active imagination as a technique for discovering the mythopoetic images hidden in the emotions. Jung modeled this method in his Red Book. A related technique is what Walt Whitman called Vocalism. Poets who have used this method have helped to articulate what our national myth is in the United States. One of our central myths is “Spiritual Democracy.” Spiritual Democracy is a way to sacred action, whether through political activism, through advocacy for the environment, speaking up in community, art, science, or writing of poetry or prose. In 1921, Jung published Psychological Types, where he included a chapter on the writings of William James, who wrote The Varieties of Religious Experience, our first transnational text on Spiritual Democracy. By this time Spiritual Democracy had emerged in the works of America’s greatest 19th century poets, Whitman, Herman Melville, and Emily Dickinson. The notion of Spiritual Democracy had been alive in the USA in documents of our founding fathers. Washington, Franklin, and Jefferson all relied upon the Iroquois Treaty of Peace to formulate some of the principles of our Declaration of Independence and Constitution.

In the lecture, Steven will discuss the background of this idea in Native American history, shamanism, and 19th century American poetry.


During the morning, Steven will extend the ideas from the lecture and deepen understanding through an in-depth exploration of the concept in the psychology of William James and Jung’s analytical psychology. He will provide contemporary examples from dream material; and help us understand how to relate this notion to our practical lives, writing, activism, and clinical practice, and will open the discussion up for participation from the group.

In the afternoon, Lori Goldrich will review Jung’s method of active imagination and Whitman’s technique of “vocalism” and facilitate some practical experiential exercises utilizing these methods to further embody and enliven the vision of Spiritual Democracy. This will provide an opportunity to deepen our own visions of Spiritual Democracy for purposes of personal and cultural transformation.

Steven Herrmann, Ph.D., MFT, is an analyst member of the C. G. Jung Institute of San Francisco with a private practice in Oakland, CA. He is the author of Spiritual Democracy: The Wisdom of Early American Visionaries for the Journey Forward.

Lori Goldrich Ph.D., an analyst member of the C. G. Jung Institute of San Francisco, is a licensed psychologist, registered music therapist and expressive arts therapist. She has a private practice in Oakland, CA.


  • Friday, March 13, 2020
  • 7:00 pm – 9:00 pm  –  $10*
  • 2 CEUs or 2 Cultural CEUs


  • Saturday, March 14, 2020
  • 9 am – 4:30pm  –  $80*
  • 6 CEUs or 6 Cultural CEUs

*(add $20 surcharge for CEUs)


March 13, 2020
March 14, 2020
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Frances Hatfield


Center for Spritual Living
505 Camino de los Marquez
Santa Fe, NM United States
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