Those who fail to incorporate the shadow are doomed to project it. In the modern materialist West, we don’t merely fail to incorporate our shadow, we deny its existence. In The Devouring Mother, author Simon Sheridan takes a journey into the other half of the psyche looking for an archetypal explanation for the social ructions in western society over the last several years beginning with the Trump and Brexit votes and reaching earthquake proportions with the corona event.
Drawing on the work of the great Swiss psychologist, Carl Jung, Sheridan makes the case that the archetype that has been dominant in the west for several decades is The Devouring Mother, a shadow form whose primary qualities include gaslighting, emotional manipulation and guilt tripping all in the name of protecting her children. Sheridan switches between the microcosmic and the macrocosmic to show how The Devouring Mother permeates all levels of society from interpersonal relationships and employment through to large scale political and social movements including corona. A mother implies children and Sheridan identifies the two archetypal children of The Devouring Mother as the acquiescent and the rebellious. In so doing, he provides an explanation for the Trump and Brexit rebellions in politics as well as the broader psychological and cultural drivers inherent in the rise of both Jordan Peterson and Greta Thunberg. He shows that the corona event did not come out of nowhere but represents an escalation of the existing battle going on in the unconscious mind of the West; a battle that is increasingly moving into consciousness and therefore represents the process Jung described as individuation at both the individual and the societal level. The time has come for the West to face its shadow: The Devouring Mother.