Traveling worldwide, Rogers participated in negotiating sessions involving disputes between Protestants and Catholics, religious, racial, and ethnic differences in South Africa, racial disputes in the United States, and consumers and health care professionals in several jurisdictions. He was widely recognized as being successful at resolving serious differences in most of these difference scenarios.
Carl Rogers was born and raised in the United States but Carl Jung was born and raised in Switzerland. While Rogers was an extroverted, personable individual, Carl Jung was a highly introverted individual who preferred a solitary life. By his own admission, Jung was happiest when he was left alone with his thoughts (Wehr, 2001).
Jung academic background was founded in the field of medicine. While attending medical school, Jung developed an interest in spirituality and it was this interest that eventually led to his becoming interested in psychiatry as a specialty. As part of his graduation requirements Jung published his doctoral dissertation which was entitled, "On the Psychology and Pathology of So-Called Occult Phenomena. "
During his career Jung enjoyed a long friendship and professional relationship with Sigmund Freud. Jung's relationship with Freud influenced greatly Jung's psychological theories and precipitated his interest in the subconscious mind. Jung spent many years studying the human mind based on dreams, myth, art and philosophy (Jung, 1968). Eventually, however, Freud and Jung began to part ways both as friends and as professional colleagues as Jung's theories began to diverge from Freud's views. The primary source of difference between the two psychiatrists centered round Freud's strict reliance upon sex as the sole source of behavior motivation.
Jung, like Freud, viewed the human psyche as existing in three parts but Jung classified these three parts much differently. Jung described the three parts as the ego (the conscious mind), the personal unconscious, and the collective unconscious. For Jung, the collective unconscious was the cumulative experience and knowledge of the human species.
The essence of Jung's theory was that every individual must go through a process of individuation in order to fully develop as a human being. The individuation process involves the conscious and unconscious parts of a person becoming completely integrated. Once this has occurred the person becomes his or her true self.
Jung's theory of psychology is more complex and difficult to understand than is Rogers. Breaking from Freud's psychoanalytic theory, Jung formed his own theory called Analytical Psychology which was not well received by Freud and Freud's followers all of whom were once good friends of Jung. For the next several years Jung found himself outside the mainstream psychological community.
In time, however, Jung and his theory began to enjoy acceptance with his concepts of introversion and extraversion receiving considerable praise. In Jung's view, introverts are those individuals who are concerned only with themselves while extroverts are concerned with everything around them. Interestingly, his theory was used by one his patients for the formation of Alcoholics Anonymous.
Jung's theories are considered both diverse and eclectic. This has allowed his theories to be used by a variety of fields of study including philosophy, art, literature, music, anthropology, medicine and comparative religion. This diversity, however, has made his theories difficult to define and evaluate. His reliance on spiritualism has also made him popular among those in religious circles and has caused problems for those attempting to test his theories empirically.
Jung and Rogers were certainly pioneers in the area of psychology. They offered new approaches to the examination of human personalities and how such personalities were affected. Although their theories were diverse and unique, they both paved the way for personality studies that are still being actively used by therapists and academic today. In isolation, no one theory has all the answers but when considered together their theories make understanding human personality more understandable.
Jung, C.G. (1968). Man and His Symbols. New York: Dell.
Kirschenbaum, H. (2008). Life and Work of Carl Rogers. Alexandria, VA: American Counseling Association.
Rogers, C. (1979). The Foundations of the Person-Centered Approach. La Jolla, CA: Centrre for Studies of the Person.