Inner Gold – Understanding Psychological Projection: Robert A. Johnson

inner gold

Date Read – 15/11/2020

Rating 10/10

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Inner Gold – Robert A. Johnson

High Level Overview

Another classic by Robert Johnson. His writing makes complex topics understandable and includes the use of numerous myths, poems and stories that resonate with the human psyche. This book reveals the mechanics of psychological projection; how we project our ‘gold’ onto other people to carry for us until we are ready to reclaim it. A very important book to see where you have placed your gold in your past, along with how and why it can be integrated back into your own psyche for wholeness.



Chapter 1 – Inner Gold


– Lao Tzu once dreamt of a butterfly. For the rest of his life he didn’t know if he dreamed the butterfly, or if the butterfly dreamed him. – Maya, the world of ‘ten thousand things’. Confusion between subjective of objective world.

– Inner gold is our own psyche and magnificence.

– We project our gold onto people who we look up to. We tend to become this gold that we project until we take the gold back.

– Alchemical gold- putting your gold onto someone else until you are able to hold it yourself.

– We grow as youngsters into young adulthood by the exchange of gold

– When you put your gold onto someone, you have no right to pester them.

– If you put your gold onto someone, be aware of ‘mixing levels’. Getting into relationships, friendships, having fun , sex etc.

– Romanticism is different from being in love. With romanticism we often ask the other person to deify god for us. Most people cannot handle that responsibility.

– Our gold has godlike characteristics which is why we put it on other people. It is dangerously close to god and therefore we can’t handle it’s power.

– If you struggle with letting people go, it is because you have projected your gold onto them and need to reclaim the projection.

– God has been kept ‘ in a box’ (at the church) for centuries but now he is ‘out the box’… the church isn’t needed anymore for people to realise God. This is overwhelming for many because they can’t handle the power even though the power has always been yours.

– All affect is interior and needs to be worked on in the inner worlds.

– A huge part of how you perceive others, is a projection of what is inside ourselves.


Chapter 2 – Loneliness


– We can only see a person for who they are when we are not projecting onto them.

– 3 types of loneliness. Past, future, being dangerously close to God

– Backward turning loneliness is the mother complex, a returning to the womb.

– 2 Subject of therapy. Those looking back and those who are being touched by something they cannot yet reach. (Carl Jung said that every person who came into his practise was either 21 or 45, regardless of real age.)


“The cure for loneliness is aloneness” – Robert A Johnson

“If you can transform your loneliness into solitude, you’re one step away from the most precious of all experiences” – Robert A Johnson


Chapter 3 – Love Story


– Dante’s story (see notes here)

– Every man has a double #anima, The heavenly version and the earthly version. The same with a woman having a double #animus. The heavenly versions are usually stored away but can be called upon at any time.


Chapter 4 – The Once and Future King


– Literalism is Idolatry. By taking the inner world literally into our time-space world, you lose it’s meaning.

– ‘The second coming’ is always available in every moment.

– The second coming of Christ, as in Christian tradition, may fall into its negative aspects. The literal interpretation of ‘the second coming’ may lead the divine story into trouble. German nazism is a recent example of an archetype (the blonde beast) that took on it’s negative energy.


“We can discover within ourselves the capacity to sustain both the presence of the divine and the holiness of daily life. The two are in fact, one.” –