## Informazioni sul libro

# Geometric Wholeness of the Self

Di Donald Harms

## Descrizione

This book explores meaningful relationships between mathematics, sacred geometry, philosophy of the Enlightenment and the spiritual life of the psychologist Carl Jung.

In bringing all of this to light, the author examines the scared geometry of the Golden Section and the analytical geometry of little known German geometer Jacob Steiner. The book delves into the limits and failings of modern mathematics and reinstates geometry of the ancient past, including the classic Euclidian and the geometry which preceded it.

All of the book, both its philosophical and psychological ideas are expressed in the symbolism of the Geometry of the Self and the history the mandala, culminating with an analysis of the meaning of Carl Jung’s monumental Systema Munditotius Mandala.

Visit the authors’s blog posts as he drills down on some of the concepts he writes about in his book Geometric Wholeness of the Self.

- Editore:
- Donald Harms
- Pubblicato:
- Sep 3, 2016
- ISBN:
- 9781370249992
- Formato:
- Libro

## Anteprima del libro

### Geometric Wholeness of the Self - Donald Harms

**Geometric Wholeness of the Self **

**The Mandala as a Psychological and Spiritual Representation of the Self **

**by Donald Harms **

With this book I acknowledge the support and sharing of ideas of my wife Patricia Damery, Jungian analyst; the extensive editing by Leah Shelleda, prof. emeritus of humanities; and the thoughtful reading of my friend Jimalee Plank, writer.

Copyright © 2016 by Donald Harms

All rights reserved. ISBN 978-0-99113098-9-4

3185 Dry Creek Road, Napa California, 94558 USA

Telephone: 707.257.2683 dharms@napanet.net

Cover: The Golden Rectangle of the geometry of The Golden Section (Divine Proportion).

**Contents **

**Preface **

**Introduction **

**I. The Geometry of the Self: **

**The Christian Era through the Age of Enlightenment **

**Continuity of Gnostic Beliefs **

**Enter the Age of Enlightenment and the Changing Psychic Center **

**Kant’s Philosophy and the Self **

**Implied Philosophic Meaning of the Mandala **

**The Mandala as a Spontaneous Psychic Occurrence **

**II. Enter the Modern Era of Mathematics and Philosophy **

**Wholeness as a Term of Contemporary Understanding **

**Kant on Geometry and the Grounding of Sensible Intuition **

**A Philosophic Principle: Geometry Precedes Number **

**For a Common Understanding of the Philosophic Language Expressions Used Here **

**Geometry as a Synthetic Object of Wholeness **

**The Unitary Circle and the Mathematical Roots of Unity **

**The Philosophical/Psychological Keeping Body and Soul Together **

**Geometry of the Mandala **

**Representation of the Self Contained in the Geometric of the Mandala **

**Kant’s Critique of the Mathematical Proof, The Excluded Middle **

**Scientific Intervention in Natural Systems **

**Kant’s Progression of Perception vs. the Scientific Concept of Progress **

**Incompleteness and the Concept of Wholeness **

**Kant’s Philosophical Inner and Outer Spheres and His Copernican Consciousness **

**III. The Necessity for Wholeness in the Contemporary World **

**Carl Jung’s Recognition of the Unconscious **

**The Carl Gustav Carus (1789–1869) Understanding of the Unconscious **

**Mathematician David Hilbert on the Subject of Intuition **

**The Unconscious Holding of Completion of the Philosophical and Psychological Whole **

**Geometry as a Representation of Wholeness **

**An Analog of Perceptions –Apperceptions / Apperceptions – Perceptions **

**A Critical Commentary on the Mathematics of the Nineteenth Century **

**Dreams, Visions, and Visitations Arising as Complete Conceptions **

**Inner and Outer Geometric Representation of the Self **

**IV. A Geometric Representation of the Relation of the Self to the External Universe **

**Inversive Geometry: The Relation of the Philosophical/Psychological Internal to the External **

**Re-emergence of Intuition as Represented by Synthetic Projective Geometry **

**The Polar Line through the Center Placing the Self in the Cosmos **

**Kant’s Transcendental Aesthetic and the Basis of Perceptive Understanding **

**The Fate of Icarus Flying too High **

**Perception in Relation to the Monad as It Was Understood by Leibniz **

**Kant’s Perception of the Infinite **

**Philosophical Reflections of a Principal Twentieth-Century Mathematician **

**The Order of Classifications within the Self **

**Jung’s Inner Spheres and the Personal and Collective Unconscious **

**Jung’s Definitions of the Endopsychic Sphere(s) **

**The Psychic Affects and Invasions **

**Invasions of the Self in the Modern World **

**Jung’s Ectopsychic Sphere(s) and the Intuited Creative Process **

**V. Carl Jung’s World Systems Mandala – Systema Munditotius **

**Jung Embraces Gnosticism **

**Jung Gives a Sermon on the Infinite **

**Jung’s Anthropomorphic Mandala: Systema Munditotius **

**Jung Lays Christian Theology on Its Side **

**The Synthetic Geometry of Jung’s Systema Munditotius Mandala **

**Philosophical Meaning in Jung’s Systema Munditotius **

**Reflections on the Status of the Self in the Modern Era **

**Sustaining Life and Living in the Modern World **

**The Philosophical and Psychological Meaning of the Mandala **

**The Divine Proportion Between the Objective and Subjective Self **

**Bibliography **

**List of Figures **

**Index **

**Preface **

When the object is wholeness, one can take license to reflect across the differentiations that make a whole. In the following I have traversed philosophical, psychological, geometric, as well as other mathematical domains to explore the geometry of the mandala in the present-day context.

As an introduction to what follows, these thoughts of Plato from twenty-five hundred years ago, retold by Kant some two hundred fifty years ago, are set out as a beginning. This passage, from both Plato and Kant, is cited to focus not only on Kant’s Critique of Pure Reason, a tract that demands of us extraordinary mental concentration, but is introduced here to shine light on Kant’s giving importance to intuition and preceding that, the mystical a priori. These are presented here as parts of a psychological process by which we raise our consciousness of not only being but that which, as Kant refers to below, the soul

and a faculty for divinity.

Kant referring to Plato: His (Plato’s) hypothesis was mystical. For he took as the basis a pure intuition of the non-sensible or = (equal to) a supersensible intuition and assumed that the soul, before it was delivered into bodily condition, had a faculty for divinity, and even if it no longer participates in it in this life, never the less a consciousness of those ideas of pure understanding could be awakened in human beings, and that this consciousness is the source of a priori cognition (Kant 1997, 422).

I begin here with the notion that the mystical, as referred to above by Plato and Kant, has lost meaning in our age of science and technology, but that the mystical is found in the realm of ideas in number, geometry, and in the philosophical principles of Immanuel Kant. That is why we begin here, to define a transcendent understanding through geometry and philosophy.

In my vocational experience, the practice of architecture, there is an unwritten understanding that persists in which the architect will take command and creatively apply the several modes of understanding: engineering, physics, environ- mental science, health, history, psychology; and if done successfully, there will be geometric synthesis of the forms we call architecture. As in the practice of architecture, in the following I have accounted for the mathematical, naturally the geometric, and not the least, the philosophical/psychological, as the latter is where the architect, the occupant, and society meet to construct forms that will house both body and soul. This is what I seek to do in the Geometric Wholeness of the Self, where you will find both the philosophical and mathematical approaches leading to not just the psycho- logical but also explores the meaning of the form of consciousness in the geometric of the mandala itself, linking the philosophy of Kant and, in turn, his understanding of Plato as well.

As is the tradition in philosophic writing, presented here is what are under- stood to be universal truths, including that which in recent philosophic discourse is the logic of mathematics called symbolic logic.

Symbolic logic

in this sentence is not meant in the psychologic sense; on the contrary, symbolic logic

refers here to the term applied to the form of logic based in the number continuum, as constructed principally by mathematicians in the early part of the twentieth century.

Some may find it inappropriate that I rely on my personal psychological experience to present a current symbolic logic form of discourse; but that is precisely the perspective I offer: the experience of the human psyche within the Self. Psychological experience is understood to hold all meaning; therefore the forms of human consciousness become the principal focus that I believe is so lacking in recent philosophy. It is my belief that the recent philosophical discourse has been unnecessarily limited by preoccupation with a form of logic that is principally defined by mathematics.

I have acknowledged mathematics as having a prominent role in what follows here because that is the reality of the modern era we live in. However, my treatment of mathematics in this book is not entirely positive. I have treated some of mathematics with negative criticism in order to restore geometric proportion to this post-modern perspective. Neither do I take what is common in mathematical analysis—the A or B, plus or minus alternatives—as being the optimal principle available to us. Nor do I propose that mathematics should not be a part of solutions to the modern technological dilemmas that as a total world humanity we are just beginning to face up to. I believe that in our modern culture we have a collective appreciation of the wonders that mathematics has produced; but we do not see its inadequacies. More importantly, the uncritical use of mathematics in both philosophic and psychologic ways has had adverse effects in the modern world. Nor do

I wish to represent mathematics as being in complete opposition to the philosophical ideas described here; the philosophical ideas are rather an expanded and more inclusive of a more comprehensive view of the universe we live in every day.

The alternatives proposed here are found in the mandala, more specifically in the geometry of the mandala. What is implied by its geometry and the phenomenon by which the mandala is psychically and spiritually manifested in us is the basis for what follows.

**Introduction **

In any quest to find wholeness in personal experience and in contemporary terminology in the psychological, we are confronted with ever more complexity. In a natural desire to limit or even dispose of complexity, we tend, as a culture, to grasp ideological life jackets that can keep us afloat, particularly in a focus on our com- mon ideology of science and technology. But that ideology alone does not bring us to a place where we can move about each day with a feeling that with this modern day ideology, that contemporary life, with all of the enhancements of science and its technology, has acquired through it any truly transcendent philosophic, psychic, or spiritual meaning.

Progress, that is to say the common notion that technological change that is the direct result of progress in science, is the path to cultural fulfillment. But it continues to be a motivating force. As a culture we have haphazardly acquired a collective experience around our technology that, when viewed and analyzed from the opposite, that is to say, the originating point of a linear progression mentioned above, we can greatly expand our perspective of what our modern belief system means to us. The reader is advised that I will briefly revisit basic formal knowledge of number, geometry, and indeed some forms of consciousness as they have historically been understood and used.

You are also advised here, in the beginning, of a principle that all of these ideas are formed around. That principle and its form is that the Self is the vehicle, the propagator, and the holder of not just the psychological but the philosophical, the geometric, and, not the least of all, the mathematical. This may seem to be an obtuse idea to some, for we are informed, particularly by mathematicians, that these subjects—philosophy, geometry, and number—are universal if they are any- thing of real value to us and are not the property of any individual. But notion of the Self is also not just the physical body, which is the reducted notion that is systematically implied by modern science. The simple anecdotal evidence that I raise in promoting the centrality of the Self is the fact that virtually all of the innovative mathematical, geometric, philosophic, and psychological findings are given the name of the individual who conceived them: the Pythagorean theorem, Euclidian geometry, the Cartesian coordinates, the Galois numbers, Platonic thinking, Freudian psychology, and so forth. These individuals and their concepts are a matter of historical record. They are not labeled as such simply for the sake of convenience, but because these individuals found the intuited originality, thinking, and the history behind their conceptual processes that became formal collective knowledge. We continue to acknowledge these personalities because the Self made these discrete findings conscious, aside from and in addition to any universality as may exist in their discoveries. If the Self is the holder of everything known and the container of the form of understanding of that which is not known, or the irrational, then of course the grand question that follows is what is the relation between the inner and the outer of the Self? And how is it maintained? How the inner of the Self exists in concert with the ‘outer’ will be found near the end of this not-so-humble Self-asserting dissertation.

Beginning in the early twentieth century, there was the notion that mathematicians could define the infinite wholly within number theory; but I believe it became evident to some mathematicians that without limit this approach was precarious and, I believe, not supported by reason. Mathematicians, of course, were not in any significant way working with the irrational but had, over a period of time in the recent centuries, constructed a system of axioms and proofs that was strictly ‘rational.’

The irrational, as it is understood today, does not have a consistent meaning. For the ancient Greek mathematicians, the term irrational was a way to rationalize the fact that number and geometry are not reconcilable as 1:1; although it must be said in this context mathematicians have found ways to gloss over this uncomfortable truth. In the collective culture the irrational is abhorrent and is to be avoided at any cost. In the contemporary sense of analytical psychology, the irrational is not necessarily abhorrent but merely the un-rationalized, and as it is expressed here is also that same understanding. In the philosophical sense, the irrational is all of these, but as a true meaning consistent with the analytical psychology sense, it is intended here as being a prelude to the rational.

In practice, by a constructed rationalizing of the irrational when it was naturally encountered, it was thought, that through this method, mathematics had the capability to explore the state of the infinite.

I’m referring here to the use of irrational numbers to overcome the incommensurable and the use of differential calculus to determine the indeterminate.

It would be convenient here to describe parallels to the religious ideals about the infinite: infinite insight, power, grace, and aspirations of the Christian era of Europe, but that would need to be under the aegis of God. In the contemporary context, I propose here those powers are, indeed, not of mathematics and of mathematicians alone but also belong in the realm of philosophical reason that has been more recently expanded by our under- standing of the psychology of the unconscious.

In addition to the Self as the center of understanding I want to make some distinctions about the form of understanding, or more precisely, the forms of what is discussed here, namely: language, geometry and number. Other than pure music and physical art forms, we commonly think that language is the sole means of expression; and as a means of communication, that is nearly so. In what follows, the geometric is given what I believe is its due as a distinct and differentiated form of understanding in addition to language. There is, of course, a third form of under- standing—that of mathematics, specifically counting (the number continuum) and arithmetic—which we rely upon to be true no matter what. In what follows, I have differentiated between the geometric and the arithmetic, even though the two are not commonly distinct in our culture in the contemporary collectively held under- standing of mathematics.

I have sought here to reintroduce geometry as a synthesis of principles underlying knowledge.

Refers to Kant’s a priori synthetic geometry, which is elaborated in what follows.

To do this, it is necessary to use geometry not just as a grounding for number, which is the prevailing view of mathematicians in general, but as a distinct mode of understanding what we call space, and more to the point, as a tool of how we conceptualize both philosophically and psychologically within the Self. Just as mathematics is thought to have a logic, so does geometry and, for that matter, so does language. But, as I propose here, logic, which was so rigorously sought after in the last century in mathematics and specifically in the number continuum, is not the primary basis of human understanding. Of course, in the Western world, we have long had a formal set of logical findings we know as Euclidian geometry, and they served as a standard of logical truths until mathematicians, beginning in the sixteenth century, sought ways to override and, in some critical instances, to denigrate the truths that were formalized in Euclidian geometry.

But geometry was a form of conceptualizing understanding prior to Euclid, and it was in the human psyche long prior to that. One can look at the religious architecture of pre-Columbian America and the ancient temples of India, Egypt, and the Orient to know this. But the geometric is more integral than the production of architecture or as a basis for mathematical discoveries. It is the form that is sensately present in the mandala, a phenomenon of the psychological Self that underlies what follows here.

The subject of this thesis is that the geometric provides us with a base for psychological understanding and is also a subject that can resuscitate the philosophic, which I will discussed here as well. The philosophic in the following, is repeatedly expressed as the philosophical–psychological terminology that is a more useful expression

I use in reaction to the current state of philosophy. The term philosophical – psychological was, to my knowledge, originally used by Carl Jung to describe the philosophical content and importance of what he had to say in his analytical psychology. For that reason and out of philosophical necessity, I also use that hyphenated terminology.

It was a belief during most of the last century that science and a common appreciation of the mathematics that science is founded upon would provide us with all that was necessary, not only for survival on this planet, but for our well-being. Since the latter part of the last century some have realized that neither survival nor well being were going to be fully satisfied in the science laboratory, although, in our culture, no distinct equally powerful alternative to modern science or mathematics has yet been developed, even withstanding the revival of primal religious beliefs, specifically in North America and in the Middle East.

In the following, Carl Jung, whom I have suggested is both philosopher and psychologist, is referred to often. From his Aion: Psyche and matter exist in one and the same world, and each partakes of the other. Mathematics, for instance, has more than once proved that its purely logical constructions which transcend all experience subsequently coincided with the behavior of all things. This, like the events I call synchronistic, points to a profound harmony between all forms of existence.

These ideas were also voiced by Gottfried Leibniz in the seventeenth century in his New System, to be addressed in specifics in what follows here. (Jung 1969, Vol. 9, Part 2, 261)

Not to take exception with what I have just quoted here, but to better redefine, I offer this: at the beginning of this millennium, whether it is mathematics or what we have come to believe is number and arithmetic, in true reality, it coincides with the behavior of all things.

Upon close examination, we can find, for example, in music, the frequencies of the harmonic scales do not precisely conform to number (although they do have a general relation to number), but they have, in physical fact, a relation to geometry.

An example is the halving of a vibrating string which produces the musical octave.

The periodic table of chemistry and the solar calendar both have a relation to number but not the precise, exacting relationship that is generally accepted in science, which I believe is a limitation of a science based entirely in number.

Likewise, when Jung points to a profound harmony between all forms of existence,

this harmony is a subject of geometry and a subject distinct from number. It is also a philosophical and psychological subject, and it is greatly more so than the way we practice science in the modern era.

This tracing of the geometric, not simply in relation to mathematics, but in philosophy (and later in the redefining of the human intellect by analytical psychology), begins with Descartes in the seventeenth century. Analytical psychology, of course, takes this philosophical narration into the twentieth century. But all