Tonight we’ll read and discuss the introduction and the first essay, “Woman as Mana Figure” in the final chapter of The Great Mother. Though Jung has written extensively on the Mana Personality Neumann’s essay is a work of outstanding originality in the examination of Woman as Mana Figure mythically, historically and psychologically represented as the “original seeress,” the center of magic and magical song, dancer, priestess, oracle, medicine women, shaman, warrior queen, witch, muse, Sophia and … anima.
In the matriarchal period “the culture- bringing primordial mysteries culminate in a spiritual reality that completes the mystery character of the Feminine. There unfolds before us a magnificent world of feminine cultural development, which is at the same time an unfolding of feminine power.
In ever new circles of numinous fascination it takes form around the Archetypal Feminine, which as goddess represents the centre of the female group and the self of the individual psyche.” p. 287
“It is evident that in this phase (the matriarchal) the woman’s pre-eminence— quite aside from her sociological position— is firmly entrenched; for the less developed the consciousness of mankind,
the more it is in need of orientation by the unconscious, that is, by the transpersonal powers.” p. 296