A Jungian psychoanalyst with a background in Judaism and Zen Buddhism explores the history of God concepts in the Judeo-Christian and Islamic traditions.
This book is about the Abrahamic God’s inner journey, an epic that begins in the Hebrew Bible—the common source of Judaism, Christianity, and Islam. This God emerges as a living, textured personality as tormented as a Shakespearean character and as divided against humanity as the devil who personifies his dark side. Yet in heroic fashion, he embarks on a journey to greater consciousness, stretching into himself in the Talmud, New Testament, Qur’an, and Gnostic writings. Then finally, with and through the Jewish, Christian, and Islamic mystics, he discovers his true self as the absolute Godhead. He takes up residence in their psyches as their own Divine Mind or true self. The book suggests that what God learned from his journey might be something that we in turn could learn from and that could help us at the dawn of the twenty-first century. In this way, God’s inner journey becomes a metaphor for our own.
Michael Gellert, a Jungian psychoanalyst, treats this story and the sacred writings that convey it as psychological facts—as expressions of the human psyche—regardless of whether or not God actually exists. He shows how the Hebrew Bible presents God as a primitive, barbaric tribal war god while centuries later the mystics portray him as their innermost essence and emptied of all projected, external, anthropomorphic images. Thus, God’s inner journey and the evolution of human consciousness—his story and ours—parallel each other and are integrally related.
Rich in historical detail and psychological insights, this is a book that will be welcomed by seekers of every background and orientation.