A Curious Invitation present London Month of the Dead
psychoanalysing death
Jung's Descent into the Underworld with Gary Lachman

Sunday 30th October 2022 at 3:30 pm

Arrival instructions - please note the internet gives the incorrect address for Guy's Hospital Chapel. It is in the old hospital courtyard on St Thomas Street SE1. If you are coming from London Bridge station, please take the Guy's Hospital exit. You will see the new hospital straight ahead of you. Please turn right and a little further down you will find the courtyard. It is roughly opposite The Shard.

Throughout his long career the psychologist C G Jung had a peculiar fascination with the dead. As a boy he was mesmerised by corpses left behind by a flood and as a young man he observed his father, almost clinically, in his last moments of life. Jung's mother held seances at which her dead father would speak and Jung himself had dreams of his parents' death at the moment of their passing.

During his "descent into the underworld” - the psychic upheaval following his break with Freud - Jung was visited by the souls of the dead, to whom he proclaimed his strange work, The Seven Sermons to the Dead.

But perhaps strangest of all was the Near Death Experience Jung underwent in 1944 after suffering a heart attack. He found himself floating above the planet at the entrance to a candle-lit Hindu temple and was about to enter when his doctor, in his archetypal form as Asclepius, the god of medicine, brought him back to earth. His doctor soon died, a sacrifice, Jung believed, for his own life.

Gary Lachman’s talk will look at Jung's preoccupation with the dead and why he believed that "What happens after death is so unspeakably glorious that our imagination does not suffice to form even an approximate conception of it.”

Tickets £12 including a delightful gin cocktail and a 20% donation to the King's Chaplaincy Trust.

Gary Lachman
Gary Lachman, also known as Gary Valentine, is an American writer and musician. He came to prominence in the mid-1970s as the bass guitarist for the punk rock/new wave band Blondie. He is now a full time writer and the author of twenty-one books on topics ranging from the evolution of consciousness to literary suicides, popular culture and the history of the occult.

Image credit - Naked man being attacked by little demons; watercolour by R. Cooper, approximately 1912. Public domain courtesy of Wellcome Collection.

Kensal Green Cemetery