Christ’s Androgyny: image of the Self

Consegna della legge (dettaglio cristo imberbe), santa costanza roma IV secolo. US public domain via wikimedia
Consegna della legge (dettaglio cristo imberbe), santa costanza roma IV secolo. US public domain via wikimedia

Christ is an image of the Self. When images of the Self take on anthropomorphic form, we often find androgynous characteristics.

The androgyny appears from time to time throughout history, taking various forms. Images show up in art, myths, alchemy, as well as in our dreams and imagination, as an archetypal symbol of integration of opposites.

In the case of the androgyne, there is an integration in the form of gender, of the masculine and feminine poles of being. Although the integration appears to take on a bodily form, it represents much more. One might say it represents a cosmic integration, as the integration of they dynamic poles of being. Thus representing the cosmic nature of the Self.

Notice also, Christ’s halo of light. The halo represents the divine nature of the Self, as image of light and the potential of enlightenment.

Note:

  1. Carl Jung speaks to Christ’s androgyny in Catholic mysticism in Archetypes of the Collective Unconscious, CW 9i para. 292-4.
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