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22 of 24 people found the following review helpful
on 6 January 2007
I would say this book is essential reading for anyone over the age of 30. I read this book several years ago now and it gave me a pretty convincing answer to the question that I was asking at the time: "Why do perfectly intelligent, nice, prosperous, well-educated men (and women) sometimes (or should I say often) destroy their marriages, and their family relationships to run off with another woman (or man) who often appears to any sensible person to be somewhat unsuitable. Robert Johnston gives a Jungian explanation of the process and significance of falling in love by drawing elegant parallels with the myth of Tristan and Isolde. It is riveting.
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9 of 10 people found the following review helpful
on 27 November 2012
When you're interested in the phenomenon of romantic love, when you want to improve your understanding about the meaning of `anima' and `animus' (Jungian psychology), and when you suspect that you could deal in a more mature way with your lover(s), then this book is both interesting and challenging.

Robert A. Johnson wrote many books and I've read about ten of them.
This one I consider to be his best.

Framed by the story of Tristan and Iseult the author explores/presents the nature and history of romantic love and the meaning of `anima' and `animus'. Along the way the understanding is nurtured how for man the contact with one's anima (his inner femininity) influences his contacts with women, and how for woman the contact with one's animus (her inner masculinity) influences her contacts with men. Such understanding can be valuable for your self-understanding and for your understanding of human relations. The possible gain of reading this book is better understanding of romantic love, of her inherent limitations and unrealistic expectations, and, consequently, a dawning insight in a more mature and more realistic form of love which is both more respectful to one's own anima (in men) or one's animus (in women), and more able to have real contact with the real partner facing you (instead of rather contacting your own projections).
For men, improving one's subtle contact with/access to one's inner femininity (anima) is really a hidden treasure, far beyond imagination, with the possibility of making you round, peaceful, and energetic, and more fully masculine. I suppose it is the same for women, the other way around.

The contents of this book can be a bit disappointing and confronting for the more childish parts in ourselves, but a clear understanding of the situation we are in will show that the possible gain (of these challenges in contra-sexuality and self-growth) is surely worth it. For me this book was an eye-opener.
With thanks to Robert A. Johnson.

Another book which offers a useful exploration of anima and animus is 'The invisible partners' of John A. Sanford.
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Mr A. Johnson has created 3 Master works on Human Beings- He, She and We. Through myth, which is the best way to unravel the mystical he explains how Men, Women and the Union between them work. Trying to understand these subjects through our intellect has been done over the millenia, often creating as much confusion about those subjects as not.
By approaching it through myth, another more powerful realm opens up. He and She and short reads, yet they deliver deep insights when read and re-read until it 'sinks' in.
'We' reveals itself slowly. It is worth working through it. If more of us read and understood it, there would be less unnecessary 'heart ache' in our world, and I applaud that!
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on 23 November 2014
A fantastic read! If you are open to the power of Jungian psychology and meaning behind symbolism in myth, this book will ground you and mystify you at the same time. The author managed to open my eyes to psychological forces that exist within us as humans, that dictate how we view our romantic partners and at the same time unveiled the soul as the center to where that perspective should be directed.
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on 3 May 2015
...about the misplaced notion of love in the Western world. Repetitive and longer than it needed to be but carries an important message.
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
on 2 December 2013
Having read She and He this was a natural conclusion Johnson has an appeal and influence that you can easily fall in love with - He makes understanding so simple. Thank you.
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on 25 May 2015
This is a wonderful book, bringing gentle insight into the path of romance, love and companionship.
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on 8 June 2015
truly interesting book
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on 21 November 2014
Absolutly recommended!
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on 10 February 2015
Heavy going
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