Relationships, both intimate and otherwise, these same principles apply. A person projects onto another whatever it is they need them to be. Regarding intimate relationship, the inner feminine anima or inner masculine animus is seen expressed, in the other. That person to whom one is fervently attracted, therefore, is none other than the outer mirror for that person’s inner self. The Beloved holds the space, so to speak, for what that person seeks inside themselves.
Thus, a woman with her animus will match the exact energy or programme to that of the opposites anima and vide versa for men.
A man projects his anima to his partner, most often, man is disappointed at his choice of animus and fails to recognise and accept his anima that is in front of him. He chooses to defile, degrade, abuse and sanctify woman which is reflected through his shadow behaviours, scornful tongue and mental cruelty, that takes place in private. He does this because his animus is so badly damaged, his inner feminine has been silenced and repressed from earlier ego wounds of childhood. (His beloved anima, that he has either nurtured and healed or despises. Will match perfectly with a damaged animus of the opposite gender, this is law of balance.
(Its not what the person looks like, but their inner wounds and demons that contribute to the dance of anima animus, as within, so without.)
Understanding the difference between what is true and what is only projection can be a challenge. If a person or group of people has really “gotten under our skin” or the person or situation or thing really “gets to us,” that person is most likely caught up in projection. If powerful emotions are experienced, it may be a projection rather than the real truth behind the emotions.
Levels of anima development
Jung believed anima development has four distinct levels, which 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.
The Virgin – 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. Innocence, purity and naivety. The first layer of the anima, is man’s internal image and likeness of their internal anima. I prefer to view this archetype as the virgin, which demonstrates purity and innocence.
The Bride – Jung Helen of Troy
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). I renamed this the bride, as it personifies with the mature, developed adult woman. Someone who resembles stability, home making, nurturing and projecting the care taker, nurturer. The shadow opposite to the bride is the whore, or prostitute.
The Mother – Jung Mary
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. I named this the mother, as this relationship between a mother and son is most powerful. When a man has sufficiently integrated his animus, he respects the relationship between his own mother, holding her in high regard.
The Goddess – Jung Sophia
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. I refer to this level as the goddess.
Levels of development depend on the persons ability and motivation to grow through experience and learning. Acceptance of the anima in such a dogmatic and patriarchal environment is more challenging for males than females.
A comparison of incarcerated genders highlights a clear disparity between mans ability to expand and evolve, compared to a woman, due to their innately reduced capacity to connect emotionally. The varying levels of development follow that of becoming emotionally, mentally, spiritually and physically mature and balanced in all areas.
The first level is emotional maturity. – the Virgin, innocent to life’s trials, the animus begins by discovering emotions and emotional maturity.
The second level is mental maturity, – the Bride, choosing ones life path, direction and career. Demonstrating independence, authority and dominance.
The third level is spiritual maturity, – the Mother, nurturing and caring for the feminine. The creator of new life. The feminine principle is active and alive in man.
The fourth level is the soul expansion – a return to wholeness and unity. The final level expands consciousness, experiences and enlightenment.
The dance of the anima and animus is the inner reflection of the lovers, their psychological essence form the foundations for our experiences and life lessons. A fully integrated anima/animus will lead the curious learner to assimilate their ego and surpass ego temptations and traps.