The 4 Stages of Life – Carl G. Jung Archetypes

 August 24, 2015

The 4 Stages of Life – Carl G. Jung Archetypes

“Thoroughly unprepared, we take the step into the afternoon of life. Worse still, we take this step with the false presupposition that our truths and our ideals will serve us as hitherto. But we cannot live the afternoon of life according to the program of life’s morning, for what was great in the morning will be little at evening and what in the morning was true, at evening will have become a lie.” Carl Gustav Jung

According to the Swiss psychologist, Carl Gustav Jung, there are 4 archetypes, 4 stages that we go through during our lifetime, and these stages are:

1. The ATHLETE Stage

At this stage, we are mostly preoccupied with our looks, with the way our body looks. During this stage we might stay for hours looking and admiring our reflection in the mirror. Our body, our looks are the most important thing to us, nothing else.

2. The WARRIOR stage

During this period, this stage, our main concern is to go out there and conquer the world, to do our best, be the best and get the very best, to do what warriors do, and act like warriors act. This is a stage when we continually think of ways to get more than everybody else, a stage of comparison, of defeating those around so we can feel better because we have achieved more, because we are the warriors, the brave ones.

3. The STATEMENT stage

At this time, this stage in your life, you realize what you have achieved so far is not enough for you to feel fulfilled, to be happy… you are now looking for ways to make a difference in the world, for ways to serve those around you. You are now preoccupied with ways to start giving. You now realize what you chased after until now, money, power, possessions etc. will keep on appearing in your life but you no longer attribute them the same value as before, you no longer are attached to those things because you are now in a different stage of your life, where you know there is more to life than that. You receive them, you accept them and you are grateful, but you are ready to let go of them at any time. You are looking for ways to stop thinking only about yourself, of ways to receive and start focusing on living a life of service. All you want to do in this stage is give. You now know that giving is receiving and it is time for you to stop being selfish, egotistical and self-centered and think of ways to help those in need, to leave this world better than it was when you arrived.

4. The Stage of the SPIRIT

According to Jung, this will be the last stage of our life, a stage where we realize that none of those 3 stages are really who and what we are. We realize we are more than our body, we are more than our possessions, more than our friends, our country and so on. We come to the realization that we are divine beings, spiritual beings having a human experience, and not human beings having a spiritual experience. We now know this is not our home, and we are not what we thought we are. We are in this world but not of it. We are now able to observe ourselves from a different perspective. We are now capable to step out of our own mind, out of our own body and understand who we really are, to see things the way they are. We become the observer of our lives. We realize that we are not that which we notice but, the observer of what we notice.

10 comments on “The 4 Stages of Life – Carl G. Jung Archetypes

  1. We seem to have a crisis in America, or perhaps the entire western world, that people are stuck in Stage 1 and 2, without progressing naturally into Stage 3. There is still too much arrested adolescence and narcissism. I’d include myself there. I didn’t transverse Stage 2 very successfully; the “late morning” stage of life seemed filled with overwhelming and paralyzing crisis. I retired exactly a year ago (Dec. 2017), and with my increased leisure time, I started reading Jung. I now wish I’d read him 40 years ago. I’m definitely in Stage 4 (having unsuccessfully stumbled through my early afternoon of life), reassessing my spiritual convictions and trying to find meaning which would explain life as I experienced it, and I find that pretty much all of my friends of similar age are still fiddling around in Stage 2.

  2. Absolutely! As I approach my 60th year, I have lived each of the four stages….although, the fourth stage has been part of me from the beginning. Just a bit lesser in degree. I have to add, the understanding of the fourth stage and the incorporation of that wisdom generally takes an individual multiple lifetimes to truly embrace. Sometimes many lives to actually truly understand. Every lifetime presents a myriad of experiences which helps us evolve into a more compassionate and loving Being. Time or the number of lifetimes is really irrelevant. Eventually, each and every one of us will achieve all that can be learned by choosing to experience this dimension. At some point, each of us will only have one stage and that will be the fourth stage listed above. Then we will choose to move beyond this dimension and seek other avenues of learning and ultimately evolving into a more aware, compassionate and Loving Being.

  3. Most of us end our lives living in the second stage and gloating over it . The few of us who make it to the third stage feel very satisfied with it .
    Those who might make it to the stage 4 – and it has nothing to do with age, might be the happiest ones .
    But then happiness also being just a state of mind, does it even matter ?
    Who are we to say that one stage is above the other ? Blessed are those that are happy being where they are !

  4. The 4th stage I can c as being a final stage we all go through. But I am not sure that some of the other stages really truly surpass us. And I believe that perhaps many ppl will go through the warrior stage but not everyone. It depends on the person and life situations s that r specific to each individual.

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