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Wolfgang Pauli’s contribution to the Jungian worldview

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  1. Introduction.
  2. Part 1.
    1. Carl Jung's archetypes hypothesis before his collaboration with Wolfgang Pauli.
    2. Jung's definition of synchronicity.
    3. Jung's favorite example of synchronicity.
  3. Part 2.
    1. Wolfgang Pauli's contribution to the Jungian worldview.
    2. Carl Jung's motivations in developing the synchronicity theory.
    3. The shift from the original psychological definition of synchronicity to the all-encompassing unified definition.
  4. Conclusion.

Prior to Carl Jung's work on synchronicity his psychology consisted in ideas based solely on the inner world of the psyche. This was so regardless of whether Jung was thinking about personal psychological phenomena such as complexes or collective psychological phenomena such as archetypes. But when Jung began to collaborate with the Nobel Prize winning physicist, Wolfgang Pauli; his archetypes theory progressed from psychological to psychophysical. Jung and Pauli's ideas resulted in a philosophy of nature. In a brief first part of this essay we will look into Jung's pre-synchronicity view of archetypes. In this part of the essay we will also define the basic definition of synchronicity as in its original psychological definition. We will also outline the usual scarab example in order to give the reader a basic idea of what is meant by synchronicity. Part 1 is a helpful and necessary prerequisite to part 2 which goes beyond the basics in expounding Wolfgang Pauli's contribution to the Jungian worldview.

[...] Pauli's critical contribution is aimed at helping Jung to clear up and define precisely [ ] conceptual formulations.?5 What Jung and Pauli agreed on from the beginning was possibility and usefulness [ ] of a further principle of [the] interpretation of nature other than the causal principle.?6 However, at first synchronicity was applied solely to inner psyche and outer external world. This is now only one part of the equation. There is another part concerning non-psychic acausality. As we can see from this logic, Pauli and Jung were striving for an all-encompassing unified worldview. [...]

[...] As a further consequence of the worldview arising from the discussions of synchronicity, philosophy would be no longer a mere, almost useless, appendage of science, but it would discover its role of active collaborator again, directly helping scientists to approach the study of nature and the construction of a philosophical and scientific worldview.?2 However, I have to unfortunately end on problems that I envisage (and that I think are obvious problems). Ego-differentiation is how the healthy modern individual is psychologically constructed. [...]

[...] Moreover, this acausal connection of events both is symbolically informative (as we shall see) and has a deeply emotive and transforming impact on the patient and in these senses is clearly meaningful.?14 I have felt it necessary to outline the basics of Jung's work here as a precursor to a more in-depth discussion of Wolfgang Pauli's contribution to the Jungian worldview. Pauli's contribution is centered around the issue of synchronicity; hence part 1 sketched the basics of synchronicity. As we shall see, the meeting of a great psychologist with a great physicist resulted in a third thing a more unified field encompassing the two disciplines in a philosophy of nature. [...]

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