Sanskrit translations in Nazi hands

Robert Zydenbos zydenbos at BLR.VSNL.NET.IN
Tue Jan 12 14:32:33 EST 1999

At 17:10 11.01.99 -0500, Dan Lusthaus wrote with malicious glee:

>Robert Zydenbos, in a bit of defensive revisionism, argues against the
>charge of Jung's nazi affiliations.
>>Je pense que non.
>Sadly, for all those so enamored of Jung, he was indeed a virulent nazi who
>wrote position papers for the nazis, believing that his notion of
>collective unconscious and the nazi aryan ideal were of the same stuff.

The collective unconscious is something empirical, and any ideal is not. But
anyhow, this is not a Psychology List.

It is not the first time that we have had this kind of witch-hunt on this
list, fuelled by Anglo-Saxons from countries that make big cash out of
making stereotyped war movies and paperback novels and are afraid of the
euro. :-)

I must confess that I do not know the supposedly well-documented Nazi stuff
about Jung. But in all honesty, I fail to immediately see the relevance of
such an incomplete reference.

I am reminded of one of the most popular 20th-century Dutch poets, Hendrik
Marsman: he completed a translation of Nietzsche's _Zarathustra_ (that
already must make him suspect, I suppose) and openly flirted with the idea
of a 'strong man' etc. etc. But later he moved away from this, and when
politically things came to a head, he tried to escape to Britain to join in
organising the resistance but drowned on the way. So the question arises:
must we condemn Marsman to burn in hell forever?

In exactly the same way, my earlier reference to Jung's condemnation of the
Nazi mentality still stands, I believe.

These smug witch-hunts are crude because they condemn indiscriminately and
throw out the baby with the bath-water. Erich Frauwallner was an Austrian
Nazi, yet his history of Indian philosophy, unfortunately never completed,
still stands unparalleled. My own professor, an Indian from Kerala, was
Fr.'s student much later and has nothing but the greatest respect for him as
a scholar and human being. Of course we can continue the razzia and say that
my professor must be naive or a stupid Nazi 'revisionist' too; but somehow,
I find that ridiculous. (And not all sympathisers of LB Johnson were
rapists, torturers and child-murderers in Vietnam.)

And for everybody's information: I am not a (neo-)Nazi and am not German /
Swiss / Austrian / Rumanian / Ukrainian / Finnish / Italian / Spanish etc.
So none of that kind of innuendo will stick.

Dr. Robert J. Zydenbos
Mysore (India)
e-mail zydenbos at

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