Header Images

The images at the top of every page of this website relate to the unconscious because of the huge role the unconscious plays in human life.

Below is a description of each image.  They are, from left to right:

Mick Jagger

The image is from the album cover of the 1968 film Performance, a drama in which he plays a faded rock star living in a psychedelic, counter-culture, bisexually oriented house in the Chelsea district of London.

Pink Floyd

The famous album cover of their astonishingly successful album that remained on the Billboard chart of top albums for an unprecedented time – more than a decade.

The Greek god Hermes

Hermes is known as the messenger god, and he is also the mythological inventor of the guitar.  This is a famous statue of Hermes by Praxiteles.  He holds the infant Dionysus on his arm. He shuttled souls (shades) to and from the Underworld and is often depicted with wings on his feet and the side of his head. The Romans called him Mercury. (Mercury’s winged head formerly appeared on US currency – the dime.)   Hermes is known as a boundary-crosser, and is associated with both light and darkness:  he knows well both the daylight world and the dark Underworld.

Interior chamber of Egyptian pyramid

This photo was used by Swiss psychologist Carl Jung to represent the unconscious, in the book he helped edit, Man and his Symbols. The photo appeared just before the essay that he wrote for this book as a visual introduction to that essay.  The caption: “The entrance to the tomb of the Egyptian pharaoh Rameses III.”

Keith Richards

A photo of the lead guitarist of the Rolling Stones.  The young friend of his and Mick Jagger’s, Andrew Oldham – who was also their manager – famously locked Keith and Mick in a kitchen overnight, stating that they could not come out until they wrote him a song.  (Though successful performers, neither had ever before written songs.)  The song they wrote that night, As Tears Go By, became a hit first for Maryann Faithful – and, later, for the Rolling Stones.


INVENTION OF THE GUITAR BY HERMES

By the way, the guitar was essentially invented by the Greek god Hermes, the messenger god and the god who moved freely from the world of daylight to the Underworld.  Shortly after Hermes was born, he killed a tortoise, scooped out the guts, and out of them made gut strings, which he strung across the shell – creating the stringed instrument called the cithara, which evolved into the guitar.

Here is the etymology of the word “guitar”:

Lute-like musical instrument, 1620s, from French guitare, which was altered by Spanish and Provençal forms from Old French guiterre, earlier guiterne, from Latin cithara, from Greek kithara “cithara,” a triangular seven-stringed musical instrument related to the lyre, perhaps from Persian sihtar (see sitar). The name reached English several times, including giterne (early 14c., from Old French), in reference to various stringed, guitar-like instruments; the modern word is also directly from Spanish guitarra (14c.), which ultimately is from the Greek. The Arabic word is perhaps from Spanish or Greek, though often the relationship is said to be the reverse. The modern guitar is one of a large class of instruments used in all countries and ages but particularly popular in Spain and periodically so in France and England. Other 17c, forms of the word in English include guittara, guitarra, gittar, and guitarre. Compare zither, gittern.