How to best handle Anima Possession

How to best handle Anima Possession

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This is a discussion on How to best handle Anima Possession within the Jungian Theory forums, part of the Other Personality Theories category; Just about any man across cultures and age and religion and so on knows how to handle an Animus Possessed ...

  1. #1

    How to best handle Anima Possession

    Just about any man across cultures and age and religion and so on knows how to handle an Animus Possessed woman: let her be right. But how does one handle an Anima Possessed man?

    I'm friends with a man who goes into anima possession around me habitually. The first time was in March of 2018. It has escalated steadily from then until now at once a month, the most recent ones lasting 24-36 hours. It's exactly in the way Jung describes Anima possession in Aion.

    I talk to this man daily and know him well. I know he isn't in the habit of doing this with anyone else (unless he does this with his wife, which is none of my business). What IS part of my business is him - he is about to become my business partner and we work together well. It is elemental that this man stay in my life but as a professional and friend.

    What is the proper response to an Anima Possessed man if you do not want to encourage him to fall in love with you (assuming he isn't already)? What are things I can do when he is in this state to calm him down and soothe his ego without being forced to engage with him on this level? Similarly, is there anything I shouldn't do that might encourage this or enmesh myself into his anima projection?

    I'm seeking Jungian insight gleaned directly from Jung or from secondary sources who actually knew and interacted with Jung regularly. Because I know it was so elementary to Jung's Anima theory, I'm going to read She by Robert Johnson and I believe I have read all the material directly from Jung on the topic, but just to be sure I'm open to any suggestions to further reading, especially if it might appear in letters or a lecture.

    Any help?
    ninjahitsawall and The Disciple thanked this post.

  2. #2

    oof, is being a business partner with such a person a good idea?

    from my understanding women can bring that out of men. maybe its his wife? and his relationship with her that is causing it? maybe asking about that and trying to see if you can find a solution there could help. downside is you might get closer to him that youre comfortable with.

    in what way is anima possesing him? what is he doing?

  3. #3

    Quote Originally Posted by Alice Alipheese View Post
    oof, is being a business partner with such a person a good idea?
    It's the very best idea. That's non negotiable.

    from my understanding women can bring that out of men. maybe its his wife? and his relationship with her that is causing it?
    This doesn't make sense to me because he's clearly projecting the anima onto me in order to be anima possessed, yes? It's possible that he's transferring something from his wife to me to work out because he's more comfortable projecting that onto me than her but that would just be building intimacy with the "wrong" woman I would think, yes? And it would be a redirection of the Anima projection to me rather than to his wife.

    As far as asking him about it, honestly, I'd rather ask her instead! lol. I just don't think it's appropriate to talk to him about his relationship with his wife and since I'm friends with her, I'd rather mention to her hey, your guy has been sorta cranky lately, yeah?

    In what way is anima possessing him? what is he doing?
    He becomes completely not himself, irritable, reactive, accusatory, irrational, obsessed with semantics, and projects in a way that Freud would have a field day with. It's like he doesn't even care what I'm saying at all - he'll turn anything I say into some sort of criticism of him. Usually these criticisms he perceives are about his effectiveness as a man. For example, I may say something that he interprets as me criticising him for not being able to "take care" of something. One thing recently was that he actually said that he "had" to defend himself against my "attacks". I still hold to this minute I wasn't attacking him at all. It was a complete misread and twisting of my words.

    He loses the ability to even listen to me or read my words. He refuses to call or to talk in person (this only happens in chat). I see no pattern at this point to him calming down and only once was I ever able to get him to stop by calling him on it.

    One other way I can put it is that it does often resemble similar to what my son does when he wants his mommy to make things better. But characterising this man that way is really disrespectful to him for the like 90-99% of the time when he's a pleasant, intelligent, wonderful mature man.

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  5. #4

    I just wanted to share a blog post (I know, but it's actually really well written and appears sound to scrutiny) that actually has some interesting information in it about anima/us possession. I'd rather read from the book referenced directly (Invisible Partners by John Sandford), but it has enough truth to it to warrant sharing it here. Perhaps there are hints and clues in this as to how to help in this scenario.

    Regarding Anima and Animus Possession
    victorau2 thanked this post.

  6. #5

    What is his type?

  7. #6

    Quote Originally Posted by Inveniet View Post
    What is his type?
    Inveniet thanked this post.

  8. #7

    Quote Originally Posted by brightflashes View Post
    Okay in general, men who has feeling up in consciousness,
    even though culturally indoctrinated to be manly.
    Still exhibit more animus like tendencies than anima, in my opinion.
    I think Jung was either wrong about it, due to the influence of the spirit of his time.
    Or more likely, ignored it, because he knew that his contemporaries would not understand at all.
    He was already quite controversial, and I think he realized that challenging gender norms would get him nowhere.
    ninjahitsawall, brightflashes and Llyralen thanked this post.

  9. #8

    However, when the anima and animus get "triggered", for whatever reasons, then it seems to me at this point, pain and suffering in relationship are soon to follow; sometimes even very serious pain and suffering.
    I have the book the Invisible Partners and there isnt anything about possession in the index.

    What I have read about the anima or animus becoming irritable is when they are projecting the anima or animus onto another person and they become irritable or mean because the person doesnt live up to their expectations or rejects them.

    You can try telling him about animas and animuses and hope he figures it out for himself.
    Or you can ask his wife to talk to him.

    It seems like a whole can of worms to try to dissect what is a persons anima/us and what is stress-related behavior. Maybe theres an area he is not good in and projects that discontent onto you, not necessarily projecting his anima onto you.
    Even if that is somehow his anima, I think with this sort of thing you need to deal with the individual.

    Its said that animas are less complex than animuses.

    Levels of anima development
    Jung believed anima development has four distinct levels, which in "The psychology of the transference" he named Eve, Helen, Mary and Sophia. In broad terms, the entire process of anima development in a man is about the male subject opening up to emotionality, and in that way a broader spirituality, by creating a new conscious paradigm that includes intuitive processes, creativity and imagination, and psychic sensitivity towards himself and others where it might not have existed previously.[citation needed]

    The first is Eve, named after the Genesis account of Adam and Eve. It deals with the emergence of a man's object of desire.[citation needed]

    The second is Helen, an allusion to Helen of Troy in Greek mythology. In this phase, women are viewed as capable of worldly success and of being self-reliant, intelligent and insightful, even if not altogether virtuous. This second phase is meant to show a strong schism in external talents (cultivated business and conventional skills) with lacking internal qualities (inability for virtue, lacking faith or imagination).[citation needed]

    The third phase is Mary, named after the Christian theological understanding of the Virgin Mary (Jesus' mother). At this level, women can now seem to possess virtue by the perceiving man (even if in an esoteric and dogmatic way), in as much as certain activities deemed consciously unvirtuous cannot be applied to her.[citation needed]

    The fourth and final phase of anima development is Sophia, named after the Greek word for wisdom. Complete integration has now occurred, which allows women to be seen and related to as particular individuals who possess both positive and negative qualities. The most important aspect of this final level is that, as the personification "Wisdom" suggests, the anima is now developed enough that no single object can fully and permanently contain the images to which it is related.[citation needed]
    Maybe each type has different strategies for dealing with angry behaviors of disappointment and disillusionment.

    I do think if youll be spending time around this man long-term, youll need to communicate how the behaviors make you feel. You could also explain animas/animuses as an interesting discovery you made and would like to share with him.
    brightflashes and Alice Alipheese thanked this post.

  10. #9


    Thank you very much for your insight and for adding more info so that others can understand a bit better. Given that he's my business partner, he is a Jungian like myself and is familiar with the Anima/Animus as a general thing. I have actually assigned him to read various sections about the Anima/Animus for work and I have definitely told him how it makes me feel etc ...

    In fact, last time it happened I told him that if he ever does that again, it'll be the final confirmation that I know that he's in love with me and I'll treat him as such (hehe). Which seriously, isn't a bad idea at this point.

    But please understand, anyone who is reading this, that he is a very sweet and wonderful man and the best friend anyone could ever hope to have. There isn't anything "toxic" about our relationship and this projection is just so textbook, I mean straight out of Aion, that it's like clear to me that it's one of those standard things that come from some sort of frustration - sexual frustration maybe?.

    We have discussed before that he projects his Anima onto me and he's aware of it. I think he's not quite ready to be completely conscious of it though. He's a bit younger than me and he has many things to do outside of the business that limit his amount of time to truly work on himself. I have much more time on my hands, my kids are older and my partner is much less demanding of my time. It seriously could be a mid-life sort of thing, but whatever, he's a good person,business partner, and friend. I just don't want him falling into love with me if it can be helped. And I don't say that in a cocky "every boy loves me" way.
    The Disciple and Alice Alipheese thanked this post.

  11. #10

    Does it need to go this far into the theory or is the man just experiencing some negative emotions from something that happened?
    Do people think people act very unlike their usual self for no reason? I don't. There's emotional mental or physical things the man must be dealing with, right?

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