All we can do when we think of kids today is think of more hours of school, earlier age at the computer, and curfews. Who would want to grow up in that world?

— James Hillman

The most wonderful James Hillman quotes that may be undiscovered and unusual

Aging is no accident. It is necessary to the human condition, intended by the soul. We become more characteristic of who we are simply by lasting into later years; the older we become, the more our true natures emerge. Thus the final years have a very important purpose: the fulfillment and confirmation of one’s character.


Anytime you’re gonna grow, you’re gonna lose something.

You’re losing what you’re hanging onto to keep safe. You’re losing habits that you’re comfortable with, you’re losing familiarity.


In the history of the treatment of depression, there was the dunking stool, purging of the bowels of black bile, hoses, attempts to shock the patient. All of these represent hatred or aggression towards what depression represents in the patient.


Love alone is not enough. Without imagination, love stales into sentiment, duty, boredom. Relationships fail not because we have stopped loving but because we first stopped imagining.


We can't change anything until we get some fresh ideas, until we begin to see things differently.


How can we know ourselves by ourselves? .

. . Soul needs intimate connection, not only to individuate, but simply to live. For this we need relationships of the profoundest kind through which we can realize ourselves, where self-revelation is possible, where interest in and love for soul is paramount.


Just stop for a minute and you'll realize you're happy just being.

I think it's the pursuit that screws up happiness. If we drop the pursuit, it's right here.


It's important to ask yourself, How am I useful to others? What do people want from me? That may very well reveal what you are here for.


To see the angel in the malady requires an eye for the invisible, a certain blinding of one eye and an opening of the other to elsewhere.


Depression opens the door to beauty of some kind.


Psychology, so dedicated to awakening human consciousness, needs to wake itself up to one of the most ancient human truths: we cannot be studied or cured apart from the planet.


Open your heart, your gaze, to the visitations of angels, even if the gifts they bring may not be centeredness and balance but eccentricity and a wholly unfamiliar sense of pleasure called joy.


About James Hillman

Quotes 138 sayings
Nationality American
Profession Psychologist
Birthday October 16

You don't know what you're going to get into when you follow your bliss.


Until the culture recognizes the legitimacy of growing down, each person in the culture struggles blindly to make sense of the darkness that the soul requires to deepen into life.


The gift of an image is that it provides a place to watch your soul.


Instead of seeing depression as a dysfunction, it is a functioning phenomenon.

It stops you cold, sets you down, makes you damn miserable.


You know, people come to therapy really for a blessing.

Not so much to fix what's broken, but to get what's broken blessed.


It's very hard in our adversarial society to find a third view.

Take journalism, where everything is always presented as one person against another: "Now we're going to hear the opposing view." There is never a third view.


I think we're miserable partly because we have only one god, and that's economics.


Yes, there's genetics. Yes, there are chromosomes. Yes, there's biology. Yes, there are environment, sociology, parenting, economics, class, and all of that. But there is something else, as well.


To hope for nothing, to expect nothing, to demand nothing. This is analytical despair.


When they talk about family values, it's in a repressive way, as if our American tradition were only the Puritan tradition or the 19th century oppressive tradition. The Christian tradition.


The transfiguration of matter occurs through wonder.


Too many people have been analyzing their pasts, their childhoods, their memories, their parents, and realizing that it doesn't do anything-or that it doesn't do enough.


If there were a god of New York, it would be the Greek's Hermes, the Roman's Mercury. He embodies New York qualities: the quick exchange, the fastness of language and style, craftiness, the mixing of people and crossing of borders, imagination.


Each of us needs an adequate biography: How do I put together into a coherent image the pieces of my life? How do I find the basic plot of my story?


The psyche is highly flammable material.

So we are always wrapping things in asbestos, keeping our images and fantasies at arm's length because they are so full of love


The Greek idea of fate is moira, which means "portion.

" Fate rules a portion of your life. But there is more to life than just fate. There is also genetics, environment, economics, and so on. So it's not all written in the book before you get here, such that you don't have to do anything. That's fatalism.


Yes, we worship the idea of the "self-made man" - otherwise we'd go on strike against Bill Gates having all that money! We worship that idea.


Art, for example, becomes "art therapy.

" When patients make music, it becomes "music therapy." When the arts are used for "therapy" in this way, they are degraded to a secondary position.


Pathology is not a problem to be solved, but the soul's way of working on itself.


How can Hitler, or some other murderer, appear in this world? I don't think any single theory can account for the phenomenon, and I think it's a mistake to try to reduce it to being brutalized by your parents or having grown up in some horrible situation - like Charles Manson.


We forget that the soul has its own ancestors.


The self divided is precisely where the self is authentically located.

. . We all have identity crises because a single identity is a delusion of the monotheistic mind. . . Authenticity is in the illusion, playing it, seeing through it from within as we play it, like an actor who sees through his mask and can only see in this way.


From my perspective as a depth psychologist, I see that those who have a connection with story are in better shape and have better prognosis than those to whom story must be introduced.


I think there is such a thing as a bad seed that comes to flower in certain people. The danger with that theory is that we begin to look for those "troublemakers" early on and try to weed them out. That's very dangerous, because it could work against kids who are just routine troublemakers.


I think the worst atmosphere for a six-year-old is one in which there are no expectations whatsoever. That is, it's worse for the child to grow up in a vacuum where "whatever you do is alright, I'm sure you'll succeed." That is a statement of disinterest. It says, "I really have no fantasies for you at all."


I'm the result of upbringing, class, race, gender, social prejudices, and economics. So I'm a victim again. A result.


Aptitude can show calling, but it isn't the only indicator.

Ineptitude or dysfunction may reveal calling more than talent, curiously enough.


Each morning, we return from the dream soul trying to adjust to the day world, that moment when the two souls exchange places in the driver’s seat.


We need to get back to trusting our emotional rapport with children, to seeing a child's beauty and singling that child out. That's how the mentor system works - you're caught up in the fantasy of another person. Your imagination and their come together.


The culture is going into a psychological depression.

We are concerned about our place in the world, about being competitive: Will my children have as much as I have? Will I ever own my own home? How can I pay for a new car? Are immigrants taking away my white world?


Psychotherapy theory turns it all on you: you are the one who is wrong.

If a kid is having trouble or is discouraged, the problem is not just inside the kid; it's also in the system, the society.


We vote for Perot. We think he's a great, marvelous, honest man. We send money to his campaign, even though he is one of the richest capitalists in our culture. Imagine, sending money to Perot! It's unbelievable, yet it's part of that worship of individuality.


The word power has such a generally negative implication in our society.

What are people talking about? Are they talking about muscles, or control?


We must look back over our lives and look at some of the accidents and curiosities and oddities and troubles and sicknesses and begin to see more in those things than we saw before. It raises questions, so that when peculiar little accidents happen, you ask whether there is something else at work in your life.


The comic spirit masquerades in all things we say and do.

We are each a clown and do not need to put on a white face.


As Plotinus tells us, we elected the body, the parents, the place, and the circumstances that suited the soul and that, as the myth says, belongs to its necessity.


Many people nowadays who discover that they have a major symptom, whether psychological or physical, begin to study it. They get drawn very deeply into the area of their trouble. They want to know more than their doctor. That's a curious thing, and not at all the way it used to be.