Ecstasy: Understanding the Psychology of Joy

Ecstasy: Understanding the Psychology of Joy

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The loss of ecstasy is one of the greatest tragedies of Western culture. We no longer know how to experience true ecstasy and the transformation it brings. By desperately seeking the mere physical expressions of joy, we remain unfulfilled and imbalanced. Here noted author and Jungian analyst Robert A. Johnson explains the nature of ecstasy and shows us how to reconnect with the ecstatic element that lies dormant within us.

Tracing the rise and fall of the ancient Dionysian cults, Johnson dramatizes the loss of ecstasy in our culture. Dionysus, half-mortal, half-god, symbolizes the irrational world of the senses. "Dionysus embodies the continual, unpredictable changes and transmutations of nature," writes Johnson. "To worship Dionysus is to worship the life force."

Johnson penetrates the surface of modern life to the ancient dynamics of our humanity, pointing out practical means for achieving a healthy expression of our true inner selves. He reveals how the Dionysian can be brought back into our lives by exercising Jung's technique of "active imagination." Through dreams, rituals, and celebrations, he shows us how to return to these original life-giving principles and restore harmony to ourselves and our culture.


ISBN: 9780062504326

Published Date: January 1, 1989

Publisher: Harper Collins

Language: English

Page Count: 100

Size: 8.01" l x 5.38" w x 0.43" h