"O My Prophetic Soul!" Lecture at Jung Society of Utah
At the invitation of Machiel Klerk, founder of the Jung Society of Utah, Michael Vannoy Adams delivered a lecture with the title "O My Prophetic Soul! Dreams, Visions, Revelations" in Salt Lake City on November 7, 2014.
Adams posed a provocative question of immediate relevance: "Do we, like Hamlet, have prophetic souls?" He analyzed psychologically a number of prophets from a variety of traditions: Teiresias, Cassandra, Jacob, Joseph, Moses, Jesus, Muhammad, Khidr, Joan of Arc, Joseph Smith, Black Elk, and Daniel Paul Schreber. Adams presented famous cases of altered states of consciousness and then led an interactive discussion about the importance of contemporary epiphanies with an audience of 250 at the Main Library of Salt Lake City.
Jung explicitly declares that the function of the unconscious is not prophetic but prospective - an anticipatory combination of probabilities (not certainties) about the future. Self-proclaimed, so-called prophecy may be psychopathology. Jung cautions that the sudden appearance of a prophet is often evidence of "psychic disequilibrium." From Moses to Jesus to Muhammad (who, when he came out of the cave and came down from the mountain, wondered whether the experience was truly prophetic, merely poetic, or utterly psychotic) to Joseph Smith, founder of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints - of what value are dreams, visions, and revelations? When and why does prophecy succeed or fail? Is prophecy an inspiration, or is it a hallucination in which individuals just "see things" and "hear things"?
Michael Vannoy Adams in Salt Lake City for lecture to the Jung Society of Utah
Michael Vannoy Adams at presentation of "O My Prophetic Soul! Dreams, Visions, Revelations"
Members of the Jung Society of Utah in the audience at the Main Library of Salt Lake City for the lecture "O My Prophetic Soul! Dreams, Visions, Revelations"
Michael Vannoy Adams with statue of Mormon prophet Joseph Smith at the North Visitors' Center in Temple Square in Salt Lake City
Michael Vannoy Adams at dinner with members of the Jung Society of Utah at Jane's Home of the Golden Rule Project in Salt Lake City
The State Capitol of Utah with the Great Salt Lake and mountains in the distance at sunset