Examples of the Sage Archetype Jung

Archetypes: Sage

All the books in all the world could not contain all there is to know.

Benevolent mentors and custodians of wisdom are some of the hallmark characters of fantasy. Part mystic, part genius, the Sage is an essential driver of the Hero’s Journey, delegating the task of changing the world to their often younger, more naive and eager fellows. The Sage differs from the Creator in that they do not always use their knowledge to change the world, and very rarely do they desire to create something new––in this, the Sage might be closer to the Explorer. While the Explorer’s goals are outward, the Sage’s are inward.

As I have mentioned in prior posts in this series, this collection of posts deals with the archetypes first put forth by psychiatrist Carl Jung, and the use of these archetypes in fiction. Every post deals with the motivations, character profiles, and Shadows (or negatives) of each archetype. This week we continue looking at the group known as the Soul types, which are defined by goals related to personal development, or agendas that serve to improve their spiritual, mental, or physical standing with the world. The Sage, driven by a need for knowledge, is next.

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THE TWELVE ARCHETYPES


 The Sage

The Sage is an archetype that is most commonly used in fantasy.

Also known as the scholar, expert, detective, thinker, teacher, mentor, savant, and philosopher, the Sage seeks to understand the world in analytical ways, processing reality with logic and the wisdom of their often long life.

The Sage seeks nothing but the truth. Whether that truth is uncomfortable or heart-rendering, it will be accepted, as the only meaningful path in life is one that pursues truth.

Personal truth based on falsehood is one of the great fears of the Sage, and so they are always questioning what they know to be true. This eagerness to find contradiction sometimes leads the Sage to be misled, or even manipulated by others who are aware of their weakness. In addition, the Sage can be addicted to learning, spending so much time pouring over books and information that they never actively engage in the threat facing their world. One of the most easily recognized representations of this fault is Morla, the giant turtle from the Neverending Story, who is so trapped by her knowledge that she will not even pull herself out of the mud she is in, even to help save her world.

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The Sage, being one of the pillars the Hero can depend on, is not easily corruptible. Though the Sage can function in ignorance, when the wool is removed, they often more easily accept that change than the other archetypes. But a shadow Sage is not impossible. A Sage surrounded by profound ignorance may become fed up with such an unenlightened world, and would be happily engage in its political, religious, moral, and spiritual sabotage. A Sage can also become overly criticalimpractical, or even unsympathetic to those not on their intellectual plane. Due to the nature of genius, a Sage may also become addicted to mind-numbing substances.

EXAMPLES

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Other Posts in this Series:

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Creator Archetype Inventor Jung

Archetypes: Creator

If it can be imagined, it can be created.

This is the motto of the Creator, the Jungian archetype driven by the need to see dream become reality, while providing structure to the world. They are the great architects: the artists, the scientists, the gods and goddesses. Their mind is always questioning, tinkering, and entertaining new theorems. Ingenuity is their hallmark.

As I have mentioned in prior posts of this series, this collection of posts deals with the archetypes first put forth by psychiatrist Carl Jung, and the use of these archetypes in fiction. Every post deals with the motivations, character profiles, and Shadows (or negatives) of each archetype. This week continues the group known as the Soul types, which are defined by goals related to personal development, or agendas that serve to improve their spiritual, mental, or physical standing with the world. The Creator, driven by a need for progress, is today’s selection.

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THE TWELVE ARCHETYPES


 The Creator

Also known as the artist, innovator, inventor, architect, musician, artist, and dreamer, the Creator is solely focused on examining the boundaries or our reality and perception. As a character, they often take the position of the well-meaning scientist, or savant artist.

The Creator carries an inexhaustible imagination, often excelling at their chosen vocation. When presenting as a mortal character in a reality-based world, he is often portrayed as a man ahead of his time. There are often better examples of this archetype in the real world (Galileo, Einstein, Mozart, Steve Jobs) than in fiction!

Mediocrity is the Creator’s worst fear. Whether this result comes from concept or execution doesn’t matter. The creator wishes to be an authentic voice in a world of white noise. They gain rivals easily, answering those challenges with innovation in their work, and their personal outlook.

The Creator, however, has no shortage of a Shadow. Often given to starting multiple projects but finishing none, or abandoning morality for the sake of their craft, they can be taxing on other people for their insensitivity. Because of their genius, the Creator often tends to play god, allowing the end to justify the means, and deciding what is best for the masses without consulting outside opinion. Many a tormented villain began life as the over-eager, excitable, and impulsive Creator.

EXAMPLES

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Recommended Reading:

Other Posts in this Series:

Archetypes-Innocent
Archetypes-everyperson
Archetypes-Hero
Archetypes-Caregiver
Archetypes-THELOVER Archetypes-Outlaw
Archetypes-Explorer
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Archetypes: Lover

There is strength in intimacy; divinity in love, and no archetype wields this power more skillfully than the Lover: aptly named, often misunderstood.

This archetype brings to mind the great romances, playboys, and jilted lovers of the world’s story tapestry, but they are not limited to passionate affections. The Lover presides over all love: familial, religious, cultural, romantic, peaceful. The Lover desires their anima and animus to be united, in whatever form that might be.

As I have mentioned in prior posts in this series, this collection of posts deals with the archetypes first put forth by psychiatrist Carl Jung, and the use of these archetypes in fiction. Every post deals with the motivations, character profiles, and Shadows (or negatives) of each archetype. This week we are continuing the group known as the Soul types, which are defined by goals related to personal development, or agendas that serve to improve their spiritual, mental, or physical standing with the world. The Lover, driven by a need for soul-rendering bliss, is this week’s archetype. In addition to being a Soul type, it is often grouped with three other archetypes (Magician, Ruler, Warrior) to constitute what has been termed the Mature Masculine types. See my post on the Anima & Animus to learn more about the gender-denomination of the archetypes.

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THE TWELVE ARCHETYPES


 The Lover

Sometimes known as the friend, partner, intimate, enthusiast, sensualist, or team-builder, the Lover is all about creating lasting, meaningful relationships. They thrive in situations that bring them closer to the things they love.

The Lover performs best under mutually-beneficial arrangements. They are no stranger to dedication and commitment, will show appreciation and gratitude for others without being prompted, and are quickest to (excuse the cliches) wear their heart on their sleeve and view the world through rose-tinted glasses.

They are terrified of being alone. Getting excluded from the group, not having their passions reciprocated or even acknowledged are some of the greatest fears for the Lover, who usually has such a narrow, precise goal that anything less than bliss will leave them broken-hearted. The Lover rarely recovers from this sort of loss.

The Lover’s shadow can take many forms. As a chameleon, thy can risk losing their own self-identity in trying to remake themselves into the image their desired wishes, or can grow so bitter over their failure that they will obstruct the path of their scorning love, or naive people who remind them of their former, innocent passion. The shadow side of the Lover is also one of the most dangerous, as he can not be reasoned with. There is no life for the Lover after loss of love, and many times, they are willing to take many down with them in a final, fitting end. They can also have commitment problems, objectify their desire, and become addicts in the pursuit of recreating the instigating emotion.

EXAMPLES

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Recommended Reading:

Other Posts in this Series:

Archetypes-Innocent
Archetypes-everyperson
Archetypes-Hero
Archetypes-Caregiver
Archetypes-Explorer
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Archetypes: Outlaw

Rules are made to be broken, and without those at the ready to test the status quo, they never would be.

The Outlaw, or Rebel, is a fiction favorite, striding through their worlds with a confidence bordering on arrogance and shaking the foundations their society has always known — often doing so with little to no help at all from those around them.

They speak to a base human desire to break free of the rules and constraints of regular life. Take ten minutes to listen to any radio station: the message is loud and clear. Pop, Rock n’ Roll, and Punk have all gotten their popularity by settling in the heart of the listener, and make them feel the blood of the Rebel pumping through their veins.

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THE TWELVE ARCHETYPES


 The Outlaw

Also known as the rebel, revolutionary, iconoclast, and misfit, the Outlaw is the archetype that lives for revolution.

The Outlaw, though often motivated by a need to better the world through somewhat questionable means, can also have a desire for revenge against atrocities committed against her.

Independent and radical, the Outlaw employs outrageous or disruptive, shocking habits to shake those they interact with out of complacency.

Though the Outlaw can also be a strong advocate for change, the methods they often employ to get the attention of their oppressor can be outright dangerous or misguided. They can also be dogmatic about their own perspective, and outcast those who do not fit their definition of “good,” thus repeating the cycle of society they are trying to break out of. It is not uncommon for them to turn to crime that harms innocent people on the sidelines, and in the process, lose their way, as well as their sense of morality. They often alienate their friends or those who would otherwise support them.

EXAMPLES

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Recommended Reading:

Other Posts in this Series:

Archetypes-Innocent
Archetypes-everyperson
Archetypes-Hero
Archetypes-Caregiver
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Archetypes: Explorer

There are those that refuse to be caged in.

We know them. They are in the eyes of the imaginative child, or in the heart of our favorite cartoon characters’ songs. We are exposed to this archetype first, most likely because of its significance to exploring our world and learning, each day, how much wider it is than we thought the day before. The explorer is a self-fulfiller. They are self-motivated, self-driven, and self-sufficent. Independence is their hallmark.

As I have mentioned in prior posts in this series, this collection of posts deals with the archetypes first put forth by psychiatrist Carl Jung, and the use of these archetypes in fiction. Every post deals with the motivations, character profiles, and Shadows (or negatives) of each archetype. This week we are beginning the group known as the Soul types, which are defined by goals related to personal development, or agendas that serve to improve their spiritual, mental, or physical standing with the world. The Explorer, driven by a need for freedom, is up first.

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THE TWELVE ARCHETYPES


 The Explorer

Also known as the seeker, wanderer, pilgrim and iconoclast, the Explorer is a character that, familiarly, seeks to escape the confines of their average life by traveling the world or exploring its many mysteries.

The Explorer is moved by the possibility of a more fulfilling and authentic life by being more true to herself, and unlike the Hero, needs no inciting incident to try and find it on her own.

Conformity is what terrifies the Explorer the most. To while away, unfulfilled and bored, is death to her. I could cue the lyrics of many Disney princess songs at this point, but you get the idea. We have all seen this character many times. Especially as children, it is the archetype most easily identified with. The Explorer loves to learn about his world.

The Explorer has its Shadow side however, as with all the archetypes. They are self-sufficient, but sometimes so much so that they become misfits, or actively repel others because group mentalities seem to equal conformity. In her quest to be more fulfilled, the Explorer may become an aimless wanderer, or even a thrill-seeker. Their goals are often unachievable, and in trying to ever scale that expectation, often disappoint themselves and excuse their lack of decision by suggesting they haven’t learned enough to try.

EXAMPLES

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Recommended Reading:

Other Posts in this Series:

Archetypes-Innocent
Archetypes-everyperson
Archetypes-Hero
Archetypes-Caregiver
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