A New Use of Language

I don’t paint a picture I allow the picture to paint me” Carl Jung (1875-1961), Founding Psychologist


Images are the language of the Psyche

Our world is constituted by our language which for most of us is words in the English language.

Therefore all current meaning, truth and value are man made by outside influences. They affect our conditioning by well meaning parents, teachers and work. We wonder who we are!

The language of images can come from dreams, fantasies and imagination. Images are symbolic representations that have meaning at the individual level. They help us choose what to be. This may be more important than what we choose to do. Image guide us to the self understanding.

All the Arts are involved in Image making.

As humans we operate by psychological laws that state we are alive. Energy gives us life and can be called life energy or as Jung preferred Psychic Energy. We don’t have psyche, we are psyche which means we have a potential for awareness, an unlimited capacity for knowing all. Most of us don’t apply this potential therefore we are in a state of unknowing. Jung called this the Unconscious as opposed to the conscious. What we know is the tip of the iceberg. What we don’t know, what we are unaware of is the vast bulk of the iceberg under water.

Jung suggested the goal of life is to bring all that is unconscious to the level of consciousness. Then we are made whole. Wholeness is the goal and images can chart the progress of every human life to this end.

Words can of course convey images but mostly they are weak. There are exceptions in the case of poets but they are few and far between. The weakness of words is their multi-meanings. For example the word hand “on the other hand” and “hands up!”.

This situation leads to poor communication especially between opposite personalities, cultural difference and ideologies from east and west.

The language of images speaks to the heart in the same way dreams are pertinent to the dreamer alone. Here the images become symbols that have meaning. They chart the course of individual human life.

Symbols are different to signs. For example a stop sign only signals stop. A symbol can be a form of energy that Jung called Psychic Energy and has meaning at the individual level.

Symbols are universal such as the circle.

Cross, Snake and Cube. Young children draw the Sun as symbol without being taught. Here they express an Energy which is without words.

If they add form and colour to their expressive symbol the emotional impact deepens. Such expression becomes a form of therapy and therefore healing. Here a picture is worth a thousand words.

Here the alternative language of images and symbols can enrich a human life.

The adage of children drawing the sun can be carried into adulthood through what Jung called Active Imagination. At the expressive level a symbol be downloaded by simple scribble. This should be done in less than thirty seconds. This differs from the doodle which takes longer and allows the ego to take over and distort the meaning. When this happens the doodle can be described as outside in. The thirty seconds scribble can be described as inside out.

As a Visual Artist I birth Symbols on a daily basis, imbuing them with the addition of form, colour, subjective expression and claim them as beautiful. This quest for beauty contracts with the ugliness of this world. The poet Keats invented the saying “Beauty is Truth and Truth is Beauty”.

The search for beauty cannot be objective. Beauty is a by-product of imagination, fantasy and the dream.

These have no role in the conduct of our secular and materialistic world. Our present world brings depression failure and illness especially mental illness.

Image and symbol sees the world in terms of myth and legend. They can be seen in the Visual Arts, Poetry, Music and all Creative Expression.

When this expression takes place a new way of seeing the world comes into being. It is based on stories and human imagery.

This is very different to seeing the world in terms of a mathematical framework and structural regularities.

Instead of seeing this world from above it needs to be balanced by seeing each individual world from below, using dreams which contain images and symbols.

It is time to choose!

We have to make sense; we have to transform chaos into cosmos. The challenge is to develop freedom and Creativity.

The present world is full of desires and this is done collectively. All our knowledge is crowd knowledge, all our meanings which are collectively misunderstandings, are crowd understandings. Crowd survival is the name of the game.

To be truly modern each individual must go it alone. Thus the modern is basically a Dreamer who communicates inwardly through the use of symbols.

We do this through the innocence of becoming where we choose our own values and thus energise ourselves.

Then life opens out into a broad plateau of peace which can be described as the peace that passes understanding.

Here lies true meaning which should be the goal of every human life.

It is time to choose!

Express Yourself

Women are subverted from their own selves.

The energy they carry in their bodies has been subverted by the opposite and negative energy of men.

Instead of remaining loyal to their own inner energy which is nurturing and co-operative, they have become like men with the same competitive outlook based on control and power.

Men and women have the same internal energies but they go in different directions.

Women don’t doodle which is making drawings from ego based on power and control.

Women are good at Spontaneous Scribble done without ego in less than 30 seconds. Using the power of imagination produces an image. Image is defined as energy locked into material even if this material is no more than paper and pencil. The image has meaning in that chart data pertaining to an individual person. It can inform, warn and even prophecy.

One more requirement best held by women is instinct. Instinct in this modern age has been downgraded, even banished by current scientific thinking.

Instinct goes back a long way even to the beginning of life on this planet.

Instinct is associated with seeing and hearing along with touch, taste and smell.

In the modern world all that is left of instinct is the inner energy of women now just a trace of its former position.

When instinct is threatened it results in health problems, physical, mental and spiritually. Only the instinct towards good health can return a sick patient to good health.

Instinct here is associated with the full flow of psychic energy which flushes out ill health.

Here the woman must know she is free. Free to experience the full flow of energy.

Spontaneous Scribble is associated with freedom, the freedom to create an image that has meaning. That is to warn, inform and even prophecy.

Image created spontaneously is basic, like belief.

When image is elevated into Symbol then the symbol becomes the foundation of language. As such it runs with the full flow of energy and is a good efficient communicator.

Today language has become too abstract and too far removed from its original symbols. This is true of the Western World where all it’s institutions have downgraded themselves and no longer serve the community. China on the other hand with its picture based language such as a Mandarin can offer efficient communication and as such has become the power house of the world.

Spontaneous Scribble could re-invigorate the lost symbols of earlier times.

One such lost symbol is the power of the cross. If it can be removed from its religious association which may give offence and be accepted as a psychological symbol, its original power of expression can be unleashed. In Jungian psychology the cross referent two opposites. Jung wanted the integration of opposites. He called this the true goal of life.

The intent behind the integration of opposites is to arrive back at the beginning. The beginning is where we all come from. The wonders of technological advancement has left the beginning far behind. It has obstructed both words and numbers for beyond their original symbolic meanings and with this has diluted the original energies that underscored all human life.

Spontaneous Scribble allows us to go back to simple beginnings such as original image. Image energises into symbol and symbol into what Jung called the Archetypes.

Image, symbol and archetype can only lead us to awareness, the true nature of Mankind. Awareness and Psyche are two sides to the same coin. We don’t have psyche, we are psyche which means only humans have this power of awareness.

The fact that humans may not use or develop this power of awareness is the cause of so much human suffering today. It is identified as a lack of balance. True nature abhors imbalance and will even allow negative energy to come in and fill the void.

The world today has an energy problem, not only with the lack of oil and gas but also with inner energy, the full flow of psychic energy through what Jung called the Unconscious.

For example the problem of  Climate Change is usually only addressed through the outside dimension of Global Warming. Part of the equation includes Human Nature which erroneously believes it doesn’t need to change. It can only change to the good by increasing the flow of psychic energy made possible through image, symbol and archetype. To start this process use Spontaneous Scribble, putting energy into material.

Seeing comes before hearing. All great teachers use seeing as a pathway to knowing. Knowing leads to experiencing and when this happens the human being can survive all manner of disappointments. Experiencing leads to the truth and no one can take this truth from us.John Baldock at Alpha Studios in Western Australia can guide you on a journey, from non-sustainable to sustainable, from symptoms of illness to the meaning of health. This predicates you knowing yourself and expressing yourself through visual art, music, poetry, movement and taste.

Allow him to take you on this journey.

John K Baldock.
Artist. Mentor. Teacher. Psychotherapist. Writer. Listener. Advisor.

Where to now?

In 2019 it can be asked “Where is art going?” Having been part of human history for so long, visual art is now a minor offshoot of the arts. The May 16 edition of The Australian newspaper carried an article on the Venice Biennale, usually the showcase for the visual arts, with the heading “Doom, gloom and hypocrisy: it’s Venice’s art of the darkness”

An exhibition by John Baldock opens 4 – 11 August 2019 at the Zig Zag Gallery, Kalamunda. Attendance registration recommended.

John Baldock
Artist, Psychotherapist, Teacher, Lecturer, Author, Motivator


Creativity as Reflection

A combination of science and materialism has removed reflection as a right of passage in human growth and development. Reflection is defined as consulting with oneself and given to meditation. It is the quiet time of the mind.

Before what can be called the advent of the modern era especially based on science a quiet time could be sought in nature and natural things. This gave rise to reflection allied to meditation and imagination. This was a possible quiet time waiting for expression. As the poer Wardsworth said,

“The music is my heart I bore,
Long after it was heard no more.”


“It is a beauteous evening, calm and free,
The holy time as quiet as a Nun,
Breathless with adoration;”

With the scientific removal of reflection, along with meditation and imagination, life became endless activity, extraverted behaviour and the ills of anxiety and depression. The term “burn out” was invented.

With this increased activity came domestic violence on an epidemic scale.

A creative environment based on reflection, meditation and imagination became harder to find. It can be said the wells are drying up.

John Baldock at Alpha Studios in Western Australia has well over fifty (50) years of experience in developing creativity at an individual level. He is a visual artist and uses spontaneous scribble as a source of image making. His advanced psychological training enables him to use the thinking of Carl Jung in the development of creativity. He is the author of “God can be Downloaded” which details many years research into creative thinking.

Allow him to take you on a journey of the mind if you are willing to undertake the steep learning curve from death to life.

Creativity is intrinsic to the human condition. It needs to be expressed if development is to occur.

J.K. Baldock

Creativity and Loneliness

Creativity may be the antidote to loneliness. it is hard to be lonely when you make something or birth the new. Loneliness is different to being alone. Being alone has human resources such as self awareness, inspiration and motivation. These contribute to creative development which carries the activity of self expression to its logical conclusion which is life enhancing or even life itself. Loneliness is negating this expression and is like existing in a void.

Expression is best served by all the Arts whether visual, musical, movement or literature. All of these are involved in the production of images which pioneer psychologist Carl Jung calls the language of the Psyche. In this we don’t have psyche, we are psyche, in that we have an unlimited capacity for awareness.

Exercising awareness stimulates the flow of energy which Jung called Psychic Energy but which can first be referred to as Life Energy. The flow of this energy drives out loneliness.

John Baldock at Alpha Studios Western Australia is an expert at developing creativity. It is inside everybody and just needs expressing. Allow him to help you.

J. K. Baldock.

Inner images As a Resource for Life and Creativity – John Baldock

Creativity is not understood as a way of living and learning. For those few fortunate enough to have undergone creative development the rewards include a self confidence. This comes about by being energised by a energy available to everyone. The pioneer psychologist Carl Jung has described the energy as psychic energy which could also be described as life energy. This energy is associated with the formation of images. These images can be visual, musical, movement like dance or literature especially poetry. Jung describes images as the language of the psyche. All people are psychic to the extent they have a capacity for awareness. Awareness includes the macro outer world of facts and science or the micro world seen through a microscope.

This article will argue that the language of images is more precise and more powerful than word images that have multiple outside meanings entrust upon them. Some words in the dictionary have multiple possible meanings. This results in a world where everyone is talking but no one is listening. For example, the word God is taken by religious institutions to have a meaning which is unchanging. When taken as an image the meaning can change over time. For instance the word God is now taken as an absent God whose absence is seen as a void, an emptiness. Only an image can handle this through visual, sound, movement, taste and smell otherwise the void of the spoken word will cause anxiety or even depression.

Even the absent God still needs to be experienced and so it is argued that spoken word cannot be experienced. Everyone has a life to lead and so the richer the experience the better. Only image can supply this richness mainly through imagination. Words alone cannot cope. Image then is the basis for a new reality, a mystery so deep only a new and re-vitalised word language can deal with it. Such a process is called creative development. In this tradition, Carl Jung could say he didn’t believe in God but that he knew God. For this he was roundly condemned by orthodox word based religion.

Anyone can believe anything. In the world today some beliefs are quite bizarre yet people follow them. Here words can have multiple meanings. When the formation of images is exercised they become inner images that are true to the real person and operate as a rich and meaningful language at the individual level. Here the integrity of each individual becomes paramount and not the nation state with its ruler or dictator applying meaning top down.

Inner meaning is down up and is capable of re-vitalising word language. It is a source of truth and well being. Old patterns of responding to word only language, conditioned over time by authority are not easily replaced. New information like the language of images may easily vanish under stress. It is ironic that stress can come from well meaning parents, teachers and employment. People who rely completely for their knowledge coming from outside in may be vulnerable to depression and suicide. For self truth and wholeness to prevail, there is a need for change to the inner world of images like the dream. The arts are also a source of images, whether visual, sound, movement, poetry and performance as well as taste.

To learn this inner language, reflection, imagination and meditation need to be developed. These qualities may have atrophied under modern conditions. To develop them may be a hard task in a world of incessant noise. The outside world intrudes into consciousness and drives the dream away. Without the dream there can be no inner image. The dream may be a sleeping dream or a working dream and both need to be reflected.

The human ego acts in a way to banish the image, especially the inner image. It must control the process yet the dream will not be controlled. It comes as a gift coming from where it will. It is not a fantasy but rather a coded message for those who are open to its interpretations. Then the dream and its image will apply to each individual situation.

This is why painting as an art form is important to mental health wellbeing. It is a waking dream where the image points us points to the unconscious as a source of meaning. Painting therefore is an inside out activity rather than an outside in source of knowing.

Allowing inside out to influence us turns each experience into a sustained practical application. This is the essence of creative development where visualisation is the key to understanding and awareness. Visualisation is the way we think. Before words, images were.

The human brain program through its images. Words remains as abstract images invented at a human level. They can be subjective and thus hinder human communication. Inner images can be defined as formations of energy based on seeing, hearing, moving, taste and smell. They emerge by the free flowing energy that Jung called psychic energy.

Images form language whether subjective or objective and thus language forms concepts, thought processes and meaning. It results in activities like painting, music, sport and literature that not only communicate between people but also contribute to inner realisation.

As long as this process is denied either by indifference, ignorance or censorship, there will be endemic ill health that currently affects the Western world. Within this symbolic system of image whether word based or inner perception the image is the primary response to any event or experience. At first it is a somatic response and then an appropriate image. After that in our Western culture the outside learned verbal system tries to ascribe meaning but is generally

Art criticism tries to work this way in providing a verbal response to a visual object. It is like one language trying to interpret another. Art criticism persists because humans are stuck with only one verbal system, the word system which now doesn’t work. It is clumsy and cannot provide the nuance demanded for complex articulation. Only the symbolic system based on images can do that.

In both orthodox religion and orthodox psychology little or no value is placed on the symbolic system of images, especially inner images. Their earth bound words simple cannot articulate other realities such as the divine and the unconscious. They clearly fail in what they are supposed to do. The symbolic system only works when its power is invited into consciousness. It will never dictate as words are capable of doing. The central purpose of a symbolic language system is to contribute re-vitalised energy to abstract verbal thought. This will enhance communication within and without the life of each individual.

The end.


Creativity and Creative Development – John Baldock.

Creativity is an individual human activity. Nations and Institutions can reap the benefit of but in themselves cannot be creative. Here creativity is defined as birthing the new. Only individual human perceptions can birth the new. And this faculty of perception is a birthright and it can be taught. Current political ineptitude has destroyed the birthright for many. Creativity at the individual level is currently destroyed by the relentless impositions of what can be called the “Outside in”. This is where people come to depend on facts coming to them from so-called experts whether religious or financial. Dependence on others is a sure way to foil. Be independent and sure of yourself. That way leads to “Inside out” and provides the best solution to problems.

Changing from “Outside in” to “Inside out” may entail difficult personal choices but the rewards are worth it. For example, energy flow may increase moving from static to creative. At the creative level, illness and disease may disappear. Certainly, prosperity will increase. There are three legs as it were to creativity. They are reflection, meditation and imagination. All destroyed by political ineptitude. Reflection is based on who we truly are.

The MYERS BRIGGS Type Indicator (or M.B.T.I) indicates out personality based on neurological strengths and weaknesses. For example, an individual who prefers thinking as the dominant mode of sorting data may be weak in the feeling function and have trouble in relationships. Here feeling does not equate to emotion. According to Jungian Psychology, both thinking and feeling are rational functions. Emotion is regarded as irrational. While individuals tend to deny psychological weaknesses in their personality, these so-called weaknesses are the very source of creativity. This is because while they are low and repressed in the psyche, out of them come movements of energy that lead to creative development.

The Pioneer Psychologist Carl Jung (1875-1961) believed in the integration of opposites as the means to become whole. Meditation involves closing down all outside distractions. Such meditation has been practised in the East for many years but is less followed in the West. Westerners get caught in distractions because it gives them a sense of control. Such control is an illusion. The contribution of meditation to creativity is to allow energy to flow. There can be no creativity without energy.

Imagination is an important human attribute that relates to creativity. Embedded in the word “Imagination” is the word “image”. Carl Jung said that “Image” is the language of the psyche. As such “Images” communicate with the self, such “Images” come from neurological functions as they relate to “Inside out”. People have been conditioned away from this state with “Outside in” the dominant mode of education, employment and the living of life. Very few people live their lives, most have their lives lived for them by the Society in which they live.

Imagination based on “Images” is not highly regarded by Western Society. It is called subjective and passes into the realms of dreams, vision, mythology, fairy tales and Ancient History. Dreams are rich in “Images” and can be meaningful when allowed to be themselves through a process called “Active Imagination”. Here “Images” relate to the Dreamer by informing, warning and communicating from “Inside out”.

Myths and Fairy Tales become stories of meaning and purpose. Based on dreams, they become icons of human experience over many centuries. Music and Poetry are seldom taken to provide meaningful experiences, but they are full of energised “Images” that relate to human concerns.

Without reflection, meditation and imagination working together to produce meaningful “Images”, the Western World suffers from mental ill-health.

The current supremacy of Science means that the “Image” making facilities have been neglected. Balance is required. This involves moving from over-reliance on “Outside in” to “Inside out”.

The economy and money is important. So is the internal mental state of individuals who call for good mental health.

Whenever Creativity and Creative Development comes up for discussion, the question arises of where to find teachers. They are few in number, obliterated by neglect. Claremont School of Art in Western Australia was a powerhouse of creativity but was closed by the government of the day.

Extensive research was saved and sent out of Australia to countries that have recently emerged with power and prosperity. Such countries have become powerful because they appreciated the application of creativity to Commercial Development. They still need to apply creativity to the life of the individual at the mental health level. But because of the appreciation of creativity and actively developing creative teachers, they are making progress. It would be a shame and unnecessary if Australia lags behind.

In conclusion, creativity taps into hidden energies that lead to wholeness. The human psyche will not tolerate imbalance. This imbalance can be associated with illness and disease, angst and general anxiety.

John Baldock at Alpha Studios has over fifty years of experience as a teacher of creativity on a scientific basis of psychological testing. Allow him to help you.

John Baldock – Artist, Teacher, Author. Wattle Grove WA.
December 2018.
[email protected]