Evolution, Jung, and Theurgy:
IV. Some Implications for Neoplatonism

E. The World Soul and  Individual Souls

The articulated archetypal Ideas, the νοερά, are represented by static information structures in the brain, but they manifest to consciousness in dynamic patterns of perception and behavior.  That is, the individual ψυκή (animate soul) embodied in the electrochemical activity of the brain, brings the archetypes into manifestation in space and time.

The νοερά, although represented in the material brain, are still fundamentally eternal Forms, which are — ignoring minor individual variation — universal, that is, common to all humans.  The ψυχὴ embodies these Ideas in matter in a more fundamental way, for it particularizes them in a numerically individual body and activates them in particular events in time.  The archetypal Ideas become divided and extended in space and time.  Thus, ψυχὴ mediates between eternity and time.

In Pythagorean terms, these sensible forms (αἰσθητὰ εἴδη) correspond to physical numbers (φυσικοὶ ἀριθμοί), which are inseparable from matter and the guiding forms of psychophysical life; they are images (εἴδωλα) of the mathematical numbers (μαθηματικοὶ ἀριθμοί), articulated in the demiurgic Logos.

The eternal, universal relation between the νοερὰ and their temporal expression in an individual is modeled on ἡ Παντὸς Ψυχή (the Soul of the All) or “World Soul.”  That is, the World Soul is the transcendent model of all particular souls, and, in answer to a perennial question, we can say that the World Soul is more than the sum of all individual souls.

Albinus (Didask. 14.169) said that the Demiurge rouses the World Soul from her κάρος, or trancelike sleep, in which she lies drugged with matter, so that she turns toward him with desire (ὄρεξις) to reproduce his Form in her womb (see also Plutarch, Proc. An. 1026EF).  One interpretation of this is that the demiurgic Forms residing in the unconscious mind are primed to rouse the soul, which is otherwise occupied with mundane matters, to actualize the Forms of archetypal intent.  When this occurs, these Forms impose their structure on the neurophysiological processes, which unfold in time and in interaction with the environment.  In this way, the Forms structure natural process.

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