Islamophobia: A Jungian Analytical Perspective

  • Ashok Bedi


A phobia is an irrational response to stimuli based on unconscious determinants. This is in contrast to a rational fear of a certain object, person, or a group based on conscious discernment. We live in troubled times, in which individuals and societies may have legitimate fear of those who may want to do them harm. This calls for a prudent and proportional response in terms of rational national policies and practices to contain these threats within our constitutional mandates and internationally agreed upon human rights. This essay will deal with the analysis and the management of the phobia of individuals with Muslim faith in our daily discourse and more specifically in the therapeutic relationship from a Jungian analytical perspective. The Jungian concept of the shadow or repressed parts of our psyche is explored. The collective shadow of our society is projected onto vulnerable sectors of society manifest as xenophobia in general and Islamophobia in particular at the present time. The archetype of the Hindu trinity – long-term ancestral memory templates in our limbic system – is activated to deal with tides and ebb of these societal epicycles. The psychological impact of Islamophobia on the victims and perpetrators, including microaggression and its clinical management, is explored. The need to maintain self-care for those who treat Islamophobia in the victim/perpetrator is emphasized.


Shadow Archetype Hindu trinity Shiva Brahma Vishnu Victim Perpetrator Xenophobia Cultural formulation Microaggression Triune brain 


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Copyright information

© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Ashok Bedi
    • 1
    • 2
    • 3
  1. 1.C.G. Jung Institute of ChicagoChicagoUSA
  2. 2.The Medical College of WisconsinMilwaukeeUSA
  3. 3.American Psychiatric AssociationArlingtonUSA

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