Complexes everywhere; they drive us to despair

Complexes everywhere; they drive us to despair


Presenter: Dr John Gosling

In this presentation, Dr John Gosling will explain the function, origin, manifestation, and triggers of what Jung termed “complexes” that was central to his theory of analytical psychology.


The complexes are buried in the unconscious and thus out of reach of the ego, where they function autonomously, interfering with interpersonal relationships and psychic wellbeing. John will explain the origin and original protective function of complexes related to earlier childhood trauma and/or bonding dysfunction. He will also bring in the psychoneurobiological perspective on complexes to explain why it is so difficult to override them once activated. He will also offer some good news, namely, that it is possible to modify the impact of complexes, and he will offer guidelines for working with complexes therapeutically.

John Gosling is a psychiatrist and Jungian analyst. He trained at the C.G. Jung Institute of New York and returned to Cape Town in 2004. He is a past-president of SAAJA, serves on several committees of SAAJA, and is also a training analyst.