Telesphorus Stone at Bollingen

Telesphorus Stone at Bollingen

On Jung’s 70th birthday in 1950, he set up a cubical stone by a tree at the side of the lake, and inscribed three sides – one with a quote from the Philosopher’s Stone: hic lapis exilis extat, pretio quoque vilis, spernitur a stultis, amatur plus ab edoctis (“this stone is poor, and cheap in price; it is disdained by fools, but it is loved all the more by the wise”); one with a figure of Telesphorus – a homunculus featured in the Red Book but reminiscent of the manikin he first created as a child; and on one side a memorial of gratitude for his 70th birthday. The copper cover was added later for protection. Jorst pointed out a book cover from a recent book where Jung’s image was photoshopped onto the stone making it seem much larger. It’s surprisingly small – maybe 3′ square – and more modest than isolated photos of it suggest. For more on these inscriptions, see the web site http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bollingen_Tower.

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About pcooperwhite

Christiane Brooks Johnson Professor of Psychology and Religion, Union Theological Seminary, New York NY
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