The Incantations 55



January, 1917

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This image is part of a sequence which symbolically depicts the regeneration of Izdubar. The entire sequence depicts the rebirth of God in Jung’s soul, and represents a renewal of life and vitality.

The solar barge is a common motif in ancient Egypt. The barge was seen as the typical means of movement of the sun. In Egyptian mythology, the Sun God struggled against the monster Aphophis, who attempted to swallow the solar barge as it traveled across the heavens each day. In Transformations and Symbols of the Libido (1912), Jung discussed the Egyptian “living sun-disc” and the motif of the sea monster. In his 1952 revision of this text, he noted that the battle with the sea monster represented the attempt to free ego-consciousness from the grip of the unconscious. The solar barge resembles some of the illustrations in the Egyptian Book of the Dead (ed. E.A. Wallis Budge [London: Arkana, 1899/1985]), i.e., the vignettes on pp. 390, 400, and 404). The oarsman is usually a falcon-headed Horus. The night journey of the sun God through the underworld is depicted in the Amduat, which has been seen as a symbolic process of transformation.


“One word that was never spoken.
One light that was never light up.
An uparalelled confusion.
And a road without end.”

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Weight9.25 lbs
Dimensions36 × 30 × 1 in
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The Red Book by C. G. Jung © 2009 by the Foundation for the Works of C. G. Jung, Zurich.
Notes © 2013 Sonu Shamdasani. Translations from The Red Book © 2009 Mark Kyburz, John Peck and Sonu Shamdasani.
The Red Book by C. G. Jung is a W. W. Norton & Company publication by arrangement with the Foundation for the Works of C. G. Jung, Zurich.