Sifting and Witches (sometimes naming posts is the hardest part)

Jung’s assertion that our “immediate connection with nature is gone forever” is hyperbolic. Simply sinking into unconsciousness is not elimination, as the unconscious acts as an autonomous, willful, and creative force. An image of sifting flour came to mind for me in this respect. The flour in the sifter is where the focus of the baker lies, while what is sifted into more delicate and softer particles falls into the bowl beneath it. Then, the baker scoops that back into the sifter to refine further. As things move in and out of consciousness, it seems a process of refinement, of sifting, occurs. What falls into unconsciousness eventually returns, not lost but preparing.

Reading through Fideler (2014) and White’s (1967) work I reflected on this enantiodromic-esque process and the repressed contents of immediate communication with nature working to become conscious again. The rise in witchcraft practices is an interesting development considering the decentralization of the human as nature, in nature, indicative to the Abrahamic faiths and ensuing philosophical perspectives. While one can argue the effectiveness of witchcraft and their attempts to re-immerse the human in nature (in some traditions the influence of Christian ideals is still heavily noticeable), it is interesting that the numbers of identified witches is increasing at the same time that the number of Christians is declining (Kosmin, 2009).

The witch is a shadow element of the Christian psyche. As Christianity repressed their own participation, reliance on, and connection with nature, they also began murdering witches (or at least people accused of witchcraft). The fact that most witches were female is unsurprising. The process of menstruation and birth are undeniable and unavoidable reminders of the pure naturalness of humans. The rising of the witch can be understood as a rising of the nature repressed in the modern psyche and the human need to be immersed and engaged in its numinosity.

Kosmin, B. A., & Keysar, A. (2009). American religious identification survey summary report. ARIS.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s