This book explores the use and development of man's symbolizing capacities-those qualities that make him distinctly human. Dr. Whitmont describes the symbolic approach to a dream, which takes into account a symptom's meaning in reference to an unfolding wholeness of personality. He then presents the view that the instinctual urge for meaning is served by the symbolizing capacities, and that this urge has been repressed in our time.
In the field of psychology, this symbolic approach is most fully exemplified by the theories of C. G. Jung. The author's contribution includes many differentiations and speculations, especially concerning the problems of relatedness.
"[Whitmont] has succeeded in what can only be called an act of creative translation. . . . The general reader will get what has not been available before, a clear and lucid statement of the Jungian position, that life has a pattern of wholeness which can only be comprehended symbolically at this moment in time."--Los Angeles Times
"Whitmont...enriches the meaning of the myth of the self by taking us beyond the language of 'disease’ and 'symptom' into another language world, the world of 'dis-ease' and 'symbol' and 'therapeia’."--Inward Light