There is a no doubt that quaternity as a symbol has a very long history.   Quaternity could be found literally all over the world – from China to Peru ,  from earliest paleolithic paintings in Rhodesia to the bronze time in all cultures until today. The number four indicates the border of accuracy in information technology,  was dominating also Greek philosophy and science and represents the number of dimensions in the space-time continuum.  There is also no doubt, that C. G. Jung regarded quaternity as most important symbol, even more important than trinity:  “The quaternity, is an archetype of almost universal occurrence [. . .] For instance, if you want to describe the horizon as a whole, you name the four quarters of heaven…There are always four elements, four prime qualities, four colours, four castes, four ways of spiritual development, etc. So, too, there are four aspects of psychological orientation [. . .] The ideal of completeness is the circle sphere, but its natural minimal division is a quaternity”. (Psychology and Religion: West and East).

The Christian Quaternity

In more than one occurrence, Jung mentioned that the most significant “advantage” in Catholicism ist the coronation of Mary in Heaven making the four complete. This coronation of Mary in Heaven, finally endorsed by the Pius XII in 1954, made to him Quaternity out of Trinity. He regarded this of a very meaningful psychological move.  It fulfilled the prophecy from Revelation which Catholics have repeatedly pleaded for. The assumption was hardly the bold stroke of a rogue pope, because the pope not only endorsed this devout custom but “on many occasions, either personally or through bishop-delegates, carried out the coronation of Marian images.” [See Pius XII, Encyclical Ad Caeli Reginam, Oct 11, 1954]. We are led to believe the proclamation followed compelling visions in the Vatican:

Holy Ghost

Christus   —————-+—————  God Father


Mary was crowned by God with a crown of justice. Coronation, or the bestowal of a crown, is primarily intended to be an exercise of justice in recognition of merit, due to the fact that she freely and out of pure love conceived and brought forth the divine Redeemer, thus giving Him to God and to the world for the salvation of the human race. The fact that Quaternity is not by any means purely Christian origin,  but also pre-Christian and  even non-Christian origin,  is not a depreciation of the Christian religion. Now the catholic faith recognizes likewise another personal evil, which would complete Quaternity according to Jung  –  the Satan in the one of the oldest book in the Bible “Job” acts on his own discretion and is able to affect even God.  As enemy of Christ, Satan is with C.G.Jung in „ answer to Hiob “ “ God son consequently likewise ” together with the Demurge Yahwe and Sophie – another Quaternity accurding to Jung. The most important Quaternity in the Christian teachings, however,  is defined by the special position of Maria. In its religion-psychological considerations Jung argues with the archetype of the Trinity (triad) and Christian trinity.  Maria as the fourth originally was missing and/or one displaced in the unconscious. The Christian religion added therefore Maria, i.e. the female and human (material although without sin) – as the fourth to the entireness again (Ascension Day).

The Christian Trinity.

If we regard the Bible in the view of the three-agreement of God, then it is to be first stated that the term is not “ to three-agreement ” or “ Trinity ” anywhere. The term was probably from Theophilus of Antiochian around 180 n. Chr. coined/shaped. andTertullian soon thereafter took it over. The fact that the term does not occur does not exclude however by any means that the thing, which the term summarizes in many places is expressed to the holy writing clearly. The science of the three-agreement can be formulated in such a way: It exists  only one true God (monotheism). This works and reveals themselves as father, son and holy spirit. The father is God, the son is God, the holy spirit is God – nature one existing, and nevertheless in three persons obviously. Jesus Christ possessed two nature during its terrestrial existence: protects divine and protects humanity. As God, he reveals his secrets, one of these revealing is the holy spirit, the eternal, to the father and son common life activity. The spirit of the first Christian municipalities was accordingly, mystic, the kind and time of their emergence. The conception of the holy spirit, which was originally only a power or attribute of God and was raised gradually for the conception to a  special, but God subordinate, nature.

Non-Christian and  archetypical Quaternity.

The fourness in dreams and visions knows of its he entireness and is also contained  in the Mandala. In mythology, religion and hermetic symbol systems,  like alchemy and Greek philosophy  the fourness is preferred, above all  in gnostic thinking. Gnosis is concerned to arrange the chaotic variety (chaos) by numine pictures and impressions. The Quaternity means therefore calming by order.  Jung frequently mentions that the Quaternity models avails itself in empiric , in order to be able to orient itself in the abundance and multilayeredness of universal motives, shapes, events, in addition, the dreams, fantasies and other unconscious and symbolic organizations of his patients.


Fire   —————-+—————  Earth


Non-Christian and  archetypical Trinity.

At no means, the trinity was less frequently seen. Triads of gods appear very early, at the primitive level.  The pre-Christian Trinity’s Pre-Christian parallels of the religion historical archetype of the God triads are in Babylonian, (Sin, Shaman and Ishtar), to Egyptian king theology (Osiris, Isis, and Horus) with father God and his  son the Pharaoh as well as in Plato’s speculations (Timaios). In the Alexandrine philosophy of the last pre-Christian century, which developed from the connection of Platonic and Jewish teachings, two other divine shapes complete Jahwe: Logos and Sophia, which form a Trias with God. The Islam, however, both condemns the teaching of trinity and worshipping Jesu and his mother Maria. The archaic triads in the religions of antiquity and of the East are so numerous that clustering had been done,  arrangement in triads is an archetype in the history of religion, which likely formed the basis of the Christian Trinity. Plato’s own threefold division of the soul is into spirit, reason and desire.  It is from these three segments that the layers of society in the utopian Republic are derived: the Guardians, the Auxiliaries and the Plebs. In Gnosis which has significant but troubled connections with  Christianity, the holy spirit completes twoness, which is  comforts the“ doubt ” in the son, an becomes thirdness, which restores the unity. An amazing similarity with Johannes 14. There Jesus addresses his farewell speech to his followers and comforts them with the words: „ I will ask the father, and he will give you another trustee that he is with you in eternity, the spirit of the truth, which the world cannot receive, because it does not see it still it knows. You [however] know it, because it remains with you and in you will be. ” The view of C.G. Jung gives, however, also some discomfort: What has psychology to do with faith?

The Jung interpretation of the Trinity.

Jung here first, coming from Platon and gnostic speculation,interprets the threeness in the sense of  consciousness process. All numine experiences, thus of working and the will of a divinity, are except-conscious experiences. C.G.Jung uses here the term of the collective unconscious. Christ was that collective shape, which the contemporary unconscious expected and in this entireness Christ is the assigned symbol of the even . A goal of the psychological development is the self  individuation. Because however humans know themselves only as I, which is hardly to be differentiated even however not to be described and of the God picture, “ the self implementation in religious-metaphysical language means the incarnation of God ” (171); God realises itself in humans. When I suffer I do similar to the passion of Christ. On the way of the implementation in its entireness of the human is th integration of the unconscious one into consciousness, into “ the divine range”. The life of Christ is thus symbol for the conscious and unconscious spiritually or psychological transformation of humans.

The Jung interpretation of the Quaternity

A Trinity “ father, mother, son ” would be more natural, which also the early Christian Gnosticism aimed at. For C.G. Jung reveals itself the Trinity as a symbol, in which divine embraces human. The Christian Trinity is awarded all to property, all bad and imperfect one are denied. Now there is also remarkable Quaternity in Christian teachings which is central with C.G. Jung. The Quaternity is “ an order pattern par excellence ” (see Jung, GW 9/2, 381) and a substantial aspect of its entireness symbolism: “ the ideal completeness is that round, the circle, but its natural minimum organization is the fourness. ” (Jung, GW 11, 246).


Spirit   —————-+—————  Material


According to C.G. Jung –  in alchemy –  the two indicates the difference and the pair, the three designates the rebirth and is the first male number. The four as number is first female number. The  square and  the cross,  completes the structure of a fundamental coordinate system for time and space, for world and cosmos. Those form therefore also the basis for many logical-mental models: The four directions, the four hoist, the four seasons  the four ages, the four elements, the four body juices and the four tempers, the four rivers of the paradises and the four Evangelists (three Synoptics and Johannes).