N.33 - A memoir of the future

Memoir of the future and memoir of the numinous


Starting from the comparison between Jung’s Red Book and Bion’s Memoir of the future thrilogy, the author suggests hypotesis that similarly to what happens for the individual personality – where the eruption of underground experiences confronts us with the emergency of parts of the mind that have not fully come into being or have been precociously miscarried, as they did not found any space within the mind of the object – there also seems to be models and theories that did not find enough space in  Freud’s mind and in the mind of the scientific community that he created. So, they sunk in the underground galleries and dungeons of psychoanalytic conceptualization.
In Jung’s reflection the contexts that anticipated the most current developments of post-Freudian psychoanalysis seemed to have been split or dissociated and stored there – that is to say, he offered a further perspective on the unconscious that, was not only formed as a depository of repressed childhood memories, but could also overlook the infinite (Matte Blanco, 1975), as it is driven by the truth instinct (Bion, 1977b), an impulse to representation (Bollas, 2009) and the knowledge instinct (Ogden, 2011).
Through Jung’s thought, this hereditary legacy could be gone down in Bion’s Memoir of the future. We would have plausible reasons to think that Jung’s unknown has been absorbed, in Bion’s reflection, in the empty concept of O and in its numinous definition: fascinating (as it refers to fascinosum) and dreadful (as it concerns the tremendum). But in Bion’s version, the concept of O, the unknown, seems to have expanded and allowed for an evolution of the model of the mind to which we can refer. In extending and overcoming Freud and Jung’s conceptions, Bion seems to have succeded in conceiving a mind that overlooks the repressed and the numinous but is forced to be confronted, since its origin, also with the nothingness of O: the lack of meaning, nihil, nothingness.

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