Category Archives: Green Man

Your Inner Green Man – Gentle Giant or Raging Tyrant?

Your Inner Green Man Has Many Faces: From Gentle Giant to Raging Tyrant

The Green Man - one of our powerful hidden archetypes - emerge from behind the leaves.

The Green Man – one of our powerful hidden archetypes – emerge from behind the leaves. Photo by Simon Garbutt.

Who is your inner Green Man, really?

Is he more than a yearning for nature; as in a desire for vacationing outdoors? Is he more than a craving for late-summer fruits and vegetables?

Is your Green Man more than your growing awareness of how important it is to “go green” in your home and workplace?

Have you even heard him emerge as the voice inside you that says – in the midst of some high-falutin’ corporate presentation – This is all so silly!

We know that our inner Green Man is one of our oldest cultural archetypes; his imagery shows up in many old English churches – along with images of other pre-Christian symbols. He comes to us from across our ancient European cultures, and shows up as the god Pan in Greek mythology. In short, the Green Man has been with us for a very long time.

But how does our Green Man show up in our recent mythology – that is, in the way that we tell ourselves our deep stories?

This is important, because for each of us, our Green Man is a part of who we are. He is one of our eight core archetypes, identified by Carl Jung (as a condensed version of the sixteen core archetypes that form his Psychological Types). The more that we understand each of our eight core archetypes, the more that we understand (and can intelligently manage) ourselves.

Let’s have a look – into realms from fairy tales to commercials to the heroic myths created in our movies.

The Green Man Is … the Jolly Green Giant!

The Jolly Green Giant - a magnificent current embodiment of the Green Man archetype.

The Jolly Green Giant – a magnificent current embodiment of the Green Man archetype.

Who says “Ho, ho, ho” and is NOT Santa Claus?

One of the first Green Man images that comes to mind – for those of us of a certain age – is no less than the Jolly Green Giant – personified and made eponymous by the Green Giant food company. To this day, canned peas and the Jolly Green Giant are forever linked in my memory.

This Jolly Green Giant incarnation is a positive aspect of the Green Man; one who is genial and outgoing, and who fosters lush growth in fields and gardens.

However, our Green Man also has a dark side.

The Green Man Has a Dark Side

The Giant from the fairytale 'Jack and the Beanstalk' and the even more recent movie Jack the Giant Slayer.

The Giant from the fairytale ‘Jack and the Beanstalk’ and the even more recent movie Jack the Giant Slayer.

In the fairy tale Jack and the Beanstalk, young hero Jack climbs up a giant beanstalk to encounter – and ultimately defeat – a vengeful giant; the one who says “Fee fi fo fum!” This is a mean giant; a Green Man who has gone over to the “dark side.”

Those of you who are interested in deeper interpretations might visit Lectures at Califia on Folklore by Marjorie C. Luesebrink, with a good Jungian overview.

I’ve found Neil Leyden’s piece on The Seven Basic Story Plots very interesting, citing Christopher Booker in his book The Seven Basic Plots. Also, Jeff Cook wrote an excellent essay on Jack’s Quest for Maturity about the Jack and the Beanstalk story. All of these interpret the Giant as a vengeful father-figure, whom Jack must defeat in order to gain maturity.

It’s true; the Green Man’s “dark side” can represent a raging father figure; a tyrant whom we must overcome in our quest for maturity and self-reliance. However, when we deal with the Green Man’s more positive aspect, we can integrate him instead of defeating him.

One of the important things that is starting to emerge here is that our Green Man represents our wild side. He is the only archetype (among our eight core archetypes) to be this associated with wildness and with nature.

Our Green Man Uses Feelings and Actions – Not Words – to Communicate

Our Green Man is not particularly verbal. From the Jungian perspective, he can be Extroverted (Jolly Green Giant) or Introverted (the quiet Green Man of the Woods). Whether introverted or extroverted, we know that he is Sensing, rather than Intuitive. He relies on what his senses – and his immediate experience – tell him. His truth comes from what he sees, what he hears, and what he touches and senses under his feet as he walks through the woods.

It’s not that our Green Man can’t form intuitive connections. Rather, his reality is grounded in his direct and pragmatic experience.

Eight core archetypes octant chart showing archetype correlations with Jungian Psychological Types.

Eight core archetypes octant chart showing archetype correlations with Jungian Psychological Types.

In the octant graph above, our Green Man shows up in the lower left. He is a masculine (Jungian Psychological Types Judging) archetype (all the ones on the lower half are masculine). He is a Feeling archetype. (All the archetypes on the left-hand-side are Feeling; those on the right are Thinking.) He is also a Sensing archetype; you’ll see that in the octant graph, Sensing archetypes alternate with Intuiting.

Our Green Man is Feeling, rather than Thinking. He doesn’t need abstract thoughts. He gets his reality from his feelings; from observing and interacting with people, animals, plants, and his surrounding world – not with thoughts about this world.

Finally, our Green Man is a masculine archetype, and so is more Judging than Perceiving. That means, despite being oriented towards the expansive feeling of the great outdoors, he is likely to want to do something rather than simply be aware of potentials and possibilities. He’s action-oriented, and inclined to do things that bring about concrete, tangible results – even if the “result” is only to see the view from the top of the next hill!

Hagrid in the Harry Potter Series – the World’s Most Famous Green Man

Rubeus Hagrid, from the Harry Potter book series, is the world's most famous Green Man.

Rubeus Hagrid, from the Harry Potter book series, is the world’s most famous Green Man.

Perhaps the best – and most well-known – Green Man character portrayal in the entire world is Rubeus Hagrid from the various Harry Potter books.

Hagrid certainly gives us a great insight into the Green Man’s character and day-to-day life!

In Hagrid, we see some exemplary Green Man characteristics:

  • This Green Man lives apart from others, and his home is more situated in nature – even though Hagrid, as the Gamekeeper, is an integral part of the Hogwarts School and wizardly community, he lives apart from the others in a separate (and more rustic) home – he prefers the woods to stone walls, and is comfortable venturing into the Dark Forest,
  • He leads with his heart – not with his mind – true to being a Feeling-type, Hagrid follows his heart – first, last, and always,
  • As a prototypical Green Man, Hagrid love animals – the stranger the better – who else but Hagrid would introduce Buckbeak (the Hippogriff), as well as Fang (the Boarhound), Fluffy (a giant three-headed dog), Norberta (a Norwegian Ridgeback dragon), and many others,
  • As with all Green Men, Hagrid is a giant – he is exuberant and “larger than life,” and
  • Hagrid is fiercely and unquestioningly loyal to those whom he loves.

With this kind of character, don’t we all need a Hagrid in our lives?

Hodor is a Green Man

In the Game of Thrones, Hodor is a loyal and devoted Green Man figure.

In the Game of Thrones, Hodor is a loyal and devoted Green Man figure.

The character Hodor, whom we meet in the first book, A Game of Thrones, in George Martin’s epic series Song of Ice and Fire, is a beautiful Green Man in current mythology.

Since we’ve just done a mini-Jungian analysis of the Green Man archetype, we can understand Hodor – and thus our own inner Green Man – more completely.

Hodor is not particularly verbal. In fact, he can say only one word – his own name.

This makes sense from the Jungian analysis; he is Sensing – not Intuiting. He is Feeling, not Thinking. His reality is his surrounding world, not thoughts about his world.

Just as with Hagrid in the Harry Potter book series, in Hodor we continue to see our Green Man’s extreme loyalty to those whom he loves. Hodor is unquestioningly loyal and devoted. In particular, he protects the physically disabled Bran, and carries him about from place to place.

In this, we have a perfect Jungian pairing: Bran is highly Intuitive. In fact, Bran’s calling is to enter the shapeshifter’s world ; he begins his own series of shamanic journeys. This is the “far side” of being Intuitive. Practically speaking, since he is crippled, Bran needs to be paired with someone who lives in the physical world in order to get around. That becomes Hodor’s job.

Bran is Intuitive and Thinking. Hodor is Sensing and Feeling. Hodor is totally devoted to Bran. Working together, they make a great team.

This gives us a clue about how we do our own integration. We do need to access our own Green Man; we can’t constantly neglect and ignore him.

Practically, this means that – even if we are immersed in a creative project or in building our empire – we must occasionally break for a walk in the woods. We need to spend time refreshing ourselves with nature. We need to pay attention to the way in which we are living on the planet. This is what will “carry us” through our creative and empire-building challenges.

In terms of our daily life: if we give even modest attention to our inner Green Man, he is there for us when we need him. And when times are hard, he’ll see us through. We can count on him to protect and serve.

His exuberance will lighten spirit. His willingness to pick up our heavy load will lighten our passage.

The Ents in Tolkien’s Lord of the Rings – Our Green Man Aids Us in Battle

Treebeard, an Ent featured in Tolkien's book the War of the Ring, is a Green Man figure.

Treebeard, an Ent featured in Tolkien’s book the War of the Ring, is a Green Man figure.

Who could be more of a Green Man than the Ent Treebeard?

Ents, from Tolkein’s books The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings saga, are prototypical Green Men. Once again, we can learn a lot about the Green Man aspect of ourselves by looking at the Ents, as well as the Huorn (Ents who have become more “treelike”).

As we become more attuned with nature, we feel more of a kinship with the Huorn, as described by Inga Simpson.

As Inga writes:

The Huorn are ancient, primeval, old growth; they remember a time when trees ruled Middlearth, before the awakening of elves and the rise of men. The Huorn are still angry at the impact of men and elves and dwarves and orcs on their world, harbouring resentments across the ages. Elves, it seems to me, should be welcome among trees; their only fault was a kinship to men. But I am not a tree.

When the Ents and the Huorn come to the aid of Aragorn in the Lord of the Rings saga, The Two Towers (Book Three), we see their terrible power unleashed against the Orcs.

This is a powerful lesson for us.

In a later post, I’ll do a more complete analysis of our core archetypes in The Lord of the Rings. For now, it suffices to say that this is a story of integration as well as a major Heroic Journey, on the part of both Frodo and Aragorn.

It is Aragorn who calls together all aspects of who he is as he confronts forces that seem much greater than himself and his allies. When Aragorn draws on the power of the Ents, he unleashes a fierce and primal force; devastating the evil Orcs.

There are times in our own lives when we need to thow everything that we have, and everything that we can draw upon, into some noble cause. It is at this time that we draw fully on our own primal reserves. We pull from that aspect of ourselves that which can be fierce in battle. This is a time for unleashing our full power; not for the restraint of civilized niceties.

We do not recognize this force-within-ourselves during our day-to-day lives. It lies in our deep reserve. This power has a “voice” that takes much time and patience to discern. However, if we have previously made connection (as Aragorn did with Treebeard), then we can tap this huge reserve when needed.

Alay'nya, author of Unveiling: The Inner Journey.

Alay’nya, author of Unveiling: The Inner Journey.

To your own health, wealth, success, and overall well-being –

Alay’nya (Alianna J. Maren, Ph.D.)
Author of Unveiling: The Inner Journey
You are the Jewel in the Heart of the Lotus. Become the Jewel!

Check out Alay’nya’s YouTube Channel
Connect with Alay’nya on Facebook
Follow Unveiling: The Inner Journey on Facebook

A Portable Identity, by Debra Bryson and Charise Hoge – for Those of Us Doing both an External and Inner Journey!

Charise Hoge, dancer, counselor, and co-author of A Portable Identity.

Charise Hoge, dancer, counselor, and co-author of A Portable Identity.

Unveiing is about the Inner Journey; Charise Hoge, MSW, has written an excellent book about what happens when we take a literal journey to a far-off land – and how it can trigger huge personal growth.

A Portable Identity, available from Amazon in both trade paper and Kindle forms, is for anyone who will be moving abroad, or who will even be undertaking a big life transition. Whether the life-change is a divorce, leaving a corporate job to start life as an entrepreneur, leaving a life of military service to start a new civilian job, or even the children leaving home, this is an important and useful book, with helpful guided exercises throughout.

Both Cherise and co-author Debra Bryson share deeply of their personal stories, as they evolved during their years abroad. From the initial point of departure, with their thoughts of how they would each “handle” their new lives abroad, to the challenges, stumbles, and eventual victories, their stories are not only their own; they are every woman’s.

As we read A Portable Identity, it doesn’t matter whether or not we have ever physically lived abroad – we all undertake similarly disruptive life-journeys that ultimately shape us into deeper and wiser beings. A Portable Identity, by Debra Bryson and Charise Hoge, is a valuable companion to the inner growth that happens when we make a shift in our external world.



Unveiling, by Alay'nya, currently has an overall five-star Amazon rating.

Unveiling, by Alay’nya, currently has an overall five-star Amazon rating.

This blog series develops themes originally published in Unveiling: The Inner Journey, published by Mourning Dove Press.

Unveiling currently has twenty 5-star Amazon reviews, and has been recommended by luminaries:

  • Dr. Christiane Northrup – “This book is delightful”
  • Midwest Book Review, in Bethany’s Books – reviews by Susan Bethany – “highly recommended”
  • Nizana al Rassan, writing for (the now out of circulation) – “a fascinating read with so much wisdom and solid advice.”

Cherise Hoge, Co-Author of A Portable Identity, on Unveiling: The Inner Journey

What does Charise Hoge, co-author of A Portable Identity as well being a counselor and dancer, have to say about Unveiling: The Inner Journey?

From Charise Hoge’s Amazon review of Unveiling:

Alay’nya achieves something vitally important with her intimate writing style — she invites you to look within yourself and take responsibility for how your life is going. For me, the book was experiential – as I read “shift state”, I shifted state, I tapped into how this feels internally. When I read about “softening” and “allow[ing] the veil to drop,” I connected with this precious vulnerability. When I read about going into the underworld of my psyche to attend to any woundedness there, I felt encouraged, willing. There are also tips and exercises at the close of each chapter to be proactive with your discoveries, but the book as a whole is transformative. It has an energetic charge that only a writer proficient in movement arts can convey! Take the invitation to go on the inner journey, this book will carry you safely there.

Read this and more reviews of Unveiling: The Inner Journey.





Copyright (c) 2013, Alay’nya (Alianna J. Maren, Ph.D.). All rights reserved.

Related Posts: Green Man – Leading Up to This Point

When Your Inner “Green Man” Breaks from Cover

Spotting Your Wild Inner Green Man – How to Tell When He’s about to Bust Loose

Your inner Green Man - how do you know that he's breaking from cover?

Your inner Green Man
how do you know that he’s breaking from cover?

An inner Green Man lurks inside each of us.

Usually, he (or she – think Women Who Run with the Wolves) is firmly contained; pushed below our mind’s conscious surface by survival and pragmatics-dominant thinking; our daily focus is often on jobs and responsibilities.

However, we can only live like this for so long. Every so often, our inner Green Man gets ready to break loose.

How do you spot – and even nurture and protect and cherish – your wild and elusive inner Green Man?

Detecting Your Inner Green Man – A Quick Questionnaire

See if you’re having uncontrollable cravings for any of the following:

  1. An eco-adventure, white water rafting, or even a weekend camping trip – anything to break up your daily pattern,
  2. Planning or planting your garden, going on a garden tour, or visiting one of the great gardens – a strong need to connect with nature and to grow green things; this would include planting a container garden for an apartment balcony, or even bringing in a plant for your desk,
  3. Visiting your local farmer’s market – even choosing to shop in a food store that has the best layout of fresh fruits and veggies; feeling nurtured and inspired just being around fresh produce and flowers,
  4. A sudden interest in making salads, experimenting with sprouts, raw foods or juicing, or finding locally-foraged foods – becoming more aware of how much your body and spirit are nurtured with the freshest of live food sources, or
  5. Finding the absurd in corporate protocols or social mores – and being irresistibly drawn to knocking over a few apple-carts.

Your Inner Green Man – Essential to Your Happiness and Well-Being

Our Green Man archetype is usually hidden within our known, safe structures - such as our churches and other formal belief systems.

Our Green Man archetype is usually hidden within our known, safe structures – such as our churches and other formal belief systems.

Our inner Green Man – like our inner Hestia – is one of our two rest-and-recharge archetypes. Neither our Green Man nor our Hestia is a core power archetype – I reserve that designation for the six archetypes that are included in the first great life journey identified in the Kabbalah and visually depicted as Cards I – VI in the Tarot’s Major Arcana.

However, just as our Hestia brings a sense of calmness, structure, and order to our lives, our Green Man serves an equally important role – he brings a vibrant, exciting, and necessary exuberance, wildness, and chaos.

When our lives get too static, boring, or predictable – or when we’re living under a self-imposed regime that is truly untenable – our Green Man comes to our rescue!

His innocent enthusiasm, exuberance, and zest for all that is living and growing freely help us break out from self-imposed expectations, boundaries, and commitments. When we truly need to “think outside the box,” our Green Man is our strongest ally.

Our Green Man Is Our Inner Wild Child

Our Green Man may have us zipping through a tree canopy.

Our Green Man may have us zipping through a tree canopy.

Our Green Man takes us out of our known, safe, familiar structures and environments. He takes us on the wild-and-crazy ride through nature.

Our Green Man may lead us to something dramatic and adventurous – something that gets our adrenaline pounding, such as white water rafting or zipping through the tree canopy.

If we are of a calmer nature, our Green Man may take us on a garden tour, or spark our own interest in gardening.

Our Green Man Can Emerge Any Time

Whenever we bring more of nature into our lives, our Green Man is speaking to us and through us.

We’re used to seeing our Green Man emerge when we plan our summer vacation – especially if that vacation involves being outdoors.

Our Green Man inspires us to use nature as we place seasonal decorations around our homes.

Our Green Man inspires us to use nature as we place seasonal decorations around our homes, such as a mantlepiece filled with evergreen boughs.

However, our Green Man comes in every time we do something that has us touching nature.

He can show up when we arrange a cornucopia of harvest vegetables for our Thanksgiving centerpiece.

He emerges when we select the Christmas tree, or decorate our mantles with a luxuriant arrangement of holly and evergreens.


Our fascination with growing foliage plants, flowers, and vegetables is part of our inner Green Man.

Our fascination with growing foliage plants, flowers, and vegetables is part of our inner Green Man.

Our Green Man silently creeps in as we voraciously consume the seed catalogs that arrive in dark winter, or as we plan our spring gardens.

If we can’t take a full vacation, our Green Man leads us to the farmer’s market to pick out the best of the seasonal produce. He may have us signing up with a community-supported agriculture program.

Nurturing Our Green Man Is a Way to Take Care of Inner Self

Our Green Man is often hidden, and we need to be carefully attentive to discern him.

Our Green Man is often hidden in our lives, just as a Green Man image in an old English church would often be hidden behind a sward of greenery. (The instance to the left is of a Green Man in the Rosslyn Chapel.)

Our society tends to push our Green Man further into the background. We all too often live in situations where “time off” (for either sickness or health) is meted out in hours, and is carefully accrued and spent. Although we have many conveniences in our lives, we also have huge time-depleting factors, ranging from commute traffic to the allure of social media.

Most of all, we are rewarded (or at least made to feel semi-secure) when we play by the rules. We often feel that our very survival is threatened if we step out of bounds; when we dare to think (much less speak) for ourselves.

Is it any wonder that a part of us feels hugely squelched and repressed? This is the part that we need, in order to feel vital and alive.

Thus, when our Green Man emerges, he is making his way upwards through a hugely repressive layer of conditioning.

He emerges at such a cost to our feeling of safety-and-survival that – when he does come forth – we need to give him attention.

Caring for, giving permission to, and nurturing our inner Green Man will be the subject of the next posting on this blog.

Alay'nya, author of Unveiling: The Inner Journey.

Alay’nya, author of Unveiling: The Inner Journey.

To your own health, wealth, success, and overall well-being –

Alay’nya (Alianna J. Maren, Ph.D.)
Author of Unveiling: The Inner Journey
You are the Jewel in the Heart of the Lotus. Become the Jewel!

Check out Alay’nya’s YouTube Channel
Connect with Alay’nya on Facebook
Follow Unveiling: The Inner Journey on Facebook

Unveiling, by Alay'nya, currently has an overall five-star Amazon rating.

Unveiling, by Alay’nya, currently has an overall five-star Amazon rating.

This blog series develops themes originally published in Unveiling: The Inner Journey, published by Mourning Dove Press.

Unveiling: The Inner Journey Is “Highly Recommended” – Midwest Book Review

We are the stars of our own lives, and it’s time we started acting as such. Unveiling: The Inner Journey is an empowering memoir from Alianna J. Maren as she advises readers, in particular, women, to take control of their lives, guide to something worth unveiling to the world and allow ourselves to be pleased with our place in the world. Unveiling is a strong addition to general inspiration collections tailored to women, highly recommended. From Bethany’s Bookshelf, Midwest Book Review

Read this and more reviews of Unveiling: The Inner Journey.





Copyright (c) 2013, Alay’nya (Alianna J. Maren, Ph.D.). All rights reserved.

Related Posts: Green Man – Leading Up to This Point

Related Posts: Green Man – What to Read after This One

Related Posts: Hestia (Our Other Rest-and-Recharge Archetype)

Related Posts: Archetype Overview – The Eight Major Archetypes (including the Six Core Power Archetypes)

Who Is Your “Green Man” (And Why Is He Taking Control of Your Life Just Now?)

Does Your Inner Green Man Want You to Bust the He** Out of Here?

Have you had a vacation yet this summer?

Or have you had one, but still need another?

Here it is, just a few days before Labor Day weekend. Most of us are making our very last, end-of-summer time-in-the-sun plans. (You may already be “outta-here.”)

I’m just like you. I’m about to bust loose inside, but here I am – at the computer – because it’s been way too long since we’ve talked.


I’m not at the computer.

Waves coming in off Sandy Beach, south-eastern tip of Oahu.

Waves coming in off Sandy Beach, south-eastern tip of Oahu. Photo: Ryan Craig.

In my mind, you and I are walking on Sandy Beach, on the eastern (windward) side of Oahu’s southern tip. It’s early morning (just as it is here, in Northern Virginia, where I just finished my real early-morning walk just a couple of hours ago).

But in this imaginary scenario, it’s just you and me. The surfers aren’t up yet. Because this is a “local” beach, the tourists haven’t found there way here yet, either.

You and me, shoes left back at the car. Gritty sand squishing between our toes, as we walk along the firm sand at the water’s edge; waves rolling in to our side, tide just coming in.

A gorgeous, calm early morning, with just the two of us, some sea gulls, and a light, brisk little wind.

Of course we’re talking; voices raised just a little so we can hear each other over the surf, the wind, and the calling of the gulls.

And of course, we’re talking about our archetypes.

After we’ve cleared the air of all the “little stuff” that goes on in our lives, we’re getting just a bit deeper – as in: how much time we’ve put in at work lately, and is it really worth while? How long it has been since our last vacation, and how good it feels – now, just a few days into this time together, our heads are really starting to get a bit clear.

We look out across the waves, the sun just over the horizon, and we get a sense of perspective.

There’s nothing like getting away from home for a few days, even if only in our minds.

Getting Outta Here Has a Long Tradition

Celebrating the Feast of Booths by living outside for a week.

Celebrating the Feast of Booths by living outside for a week – picture of a Sukkah (booth).

Even thousands of years ago, when the Jewish people were settled but largely agrarian, they were commanded to celebrate Sukkot – the Feast of Booths – every year.

Yes, the particular Jewish Feast of Booths was ordained to remind them of the time after Exodus, when they had not yet entered Canaan, but were wandering in the desert. All their needs were provided for them by God; their shoes and clothes did not wear out, and they received manna every morning.

To commemorate this time, they were instructed to live for seven days in “booths” that they covered with organic material – typically branches and leaves.

In short, they camped out. Typically on their own front porches, but – they camped out. They didn’t work (especially for the first two days). They were on vacation.

What Does the Feast of Booths Mean to Us? (Especially if We’re Non-Jewish)

Rabbi Harold White, formerly Director for the Jewish Chaplaincy at Georgetown University, and Co-Founder of the Program for Jewish Civilization at Georgetown University.

Rabbi Harold White, formerly Director for the Jewish Chaplaincy at Georgetown University, and Co-Founder of the Program for Jewish Civilization at Georgetown University.

Rabbi Harold White, who was Director for the Jewish Chaplaincy at Georgetown University before he co-founded the Program for Jewish Civilization there, is one of my favorite people. A few years ago, we met to discuss the Unveiling archetypes and the Kabbalah, and he noted how the Jewish faith included many rituals – a good number of which were specific for women. Others, of course, were for the entire populace.

Rabbi White went on to describe the role of rituals in our lives as help[ing] us to overcome our fear of transition.’ (Unveiling, p. 254)

So what’s the transition that we’re addressing when camp out for a week?

Because my own inner Green Man is so strong right now (and because you and I, at least mentally, are still “at the beach”), let me not answer that question directly just yet.

Instead, take a look at the diagram in the blog just prior to this one; Practical Archetypes. This diagram shows the eight different archetypes, arranged as octants in a pie-chart-type circle. You’ll see the Green Man at the bottom, slightly to the left.

Think about the Green Man archetype – even if you haven’t heard much about him. (Prior to writing Unveiling, I hadn’t heard of him very much either. And in fact, this is the very first time that I’m writing about him.)

Think about some of the female archetypal correlates for the Green Man – the Greek goddess Artemis, who later became the Roman goddess Diana – the original woman who ran with the wolves.

What does this sense of wildness and freedom say to you?

And what does he (or she) mean to you – sandwiched in between three other masculine archetypes, all of which are very nose-down and disciplined? The Green Man is right after the Magician, who will consume all resources in the sake of his creative vision, and the Emperor, who also takes up every resource and tool he can find, so that he can expand his empire. And the Green Man comes just before the Hierophant – our Obi-Wan Kenobi archetype. (Actually, think of Obi-Wan combined with Yoda, with Mr. Miyagi from the Karate Kid, and with Professor Dumbledore. All kindly, and not a one of whom will take any nonsense whatsoever.)

Does it begin to seem as though the Green Man lets us do what we must for psychic survival – that is, to blow off a little steam?

Share your Green Man experiences in the comments section below.

To your own inner power – as you cultivate each of your inner archetypes.

Much love –


Masculine vs. Feminine – Core Archetypes

Your Masculine and Feminine Core Archetypes: How Are They Different?


Have you wondered yet how much you really need the archetypes of the “other gender” in your life?

That is, if you’re a man, have you wondered how much you “really need” the four core feminine archetypes?

And if you’re a woman, have you wondered how much you “really need” the masculine qualities in your life?

If so, you’re not alone.

Yin and Yang not only embody classic masculine and feminine qualities, but each carries the “seed” of one within the other


The Core Masculine and Feminine Archetypes: A Quick Review

There are four each of the core masculine and feminine archetypes. Three of each are the “power archetypes” – those which we must understand and incorporate during our first adult life mastery journey. And one of each is a “reserve” or “battery power backup” archetype – designed to give us a bit of extra “juice,” or to give us a little “breathing room.”

Core archetypes octant chart - each archetype (each octant) corresponds to one of Jung's Psychological Types (discounting the introversion/extroversion distinction).

Core archetypes octant chart – each archetype (each octant) corresponds to one of Jung’s Psychological Types (discounting the introversion/extroversion distinction).

Four Core Masculine Archetypes

All the masculine archetypes are on the bottom half of the core archetypes octant chart above.

Notice also: the Thinking archetypes are on the right-hand-side (for both masculine and feminine archetypes), and the Feeling archetypes are on the left-hand-side (again, for both masculine and feminine).

  • Magician: (NTJ, or Intuitive-Thinking-Judging) Being a visionary, creating reality according to your “big dream,”
  • Emperor: (STJ, or Sensing-Thinking-Judging) Bringing your desired reality into fruition; building and stabilizing your “empire,”
  • Hierophant: (NFJ, or Intuitive-Feeling-Judging) Becoming a guru/guide, and
  • Green Man (a reserve battery archetype): (SFJ, or Sensing-Feeling-Judging) Escape to the “great outdoors,” breaking out of the molds that civilization puts on us.

Four Core Feminine Archetypes

All the feminine archetypes are on the top half of the core archetypes octant chart above.

  • Hathor (The “Love Goddess”): (SFP, or Sensing-Feeling-Perceiving) Reveling in sensual beauty and pleasure,
  • Empress: (NFP, or Intuitive-Feeling-Perceiving) Connecting, loving, nurturing,
  • High Priestess: (NTJ, or Intuitive-Thinking-Perceiving) Being contemplative and intuitive, and
  • Hestia (a reserve battery archetype): (STP, or Sensing-Thinking-Perceiving) “Mending and tending.”

We Often “Bundle” the “Other Gender” Archetypes in Our Minds

Some of the very good thinkers in archetypal psychology have suggested “bundling” of the “other gender” archetypes. Here are two examples:

Women Tend to “Bundle” Their Masculine Archetypes into Their Amazon Persona

The first person to do a good “psychology of the feminine” was Antonia Wolff, protégé (and later the lover) of Carl Jung. While Jung wrote many books, Ms. Wolff wrote only one – and it was more of a “pamphlet” than a book. However, Antonia Wolff’s book was the inspiration and “launch pad” for Dr. Toni Grant’s later book, Being a Woman – a book that influenced millions of lives. Wolff’s pamphlet, the Structural Forms of the Feminine Psyche, has been translated from the original German and is available to read online.

Wolff succinctly outlined the elements of feminine psychology into four different modes or dimensions:

  • The Hetaira (Companion) – corresponding to Hathor (The “Love Goddess”): In Wolff’s formulation, this Hetaira (Courtesan) archetype is defined in terms of and in relationship to men,
  • The Mother – corresponding to the Empress (Isis): Wolff describes this as “motherly cherishing and nursing, helping, charitable, teaching,”
  • The Medial Woman – corresponding to High Priestess: “The medial woman is immersed in the psychic atmosphere of her environment and the spirit of her period, but above all in the collective (impersonal) unconscious,” and
  • The Amazon – corresponding to the “bundled” masculine archetypes of Magician and Emperor: [whose] “interest is directed towards objective achievements which she wants to accomplish herself.”
Thracian Amazon woman with sword.

Thracian Amazon woman with sword.

When women simplify their inner masculine archetypes into the single Amazon, they lose valuable distinctions.

We see that Wolff’s Structural Forms include two masculine archetypes, bundled together into the Amazon.

She omits the Hierophant, which is a teaching/mentoring/coaching role. For Wolff, the Hierophant is subsumed into the nurturing aspect of the Mother archetype.

She also omits the Green Man from her “masculine archetypal bundle,” together with the Hestia archetype – which is a feminine one. None of these omissions are surprising when we look at them in more detail, which we’ll do in a later blogpost.

(Historical note: Did the Amazons Really Exist?.)

The impact for woman of a “bundled” collection of masculine archetypes?

If we were to think of our inner Amazon as just one archetype, we’d miss the significant distinction between being a creative visionary genius (Magician) and being the implementer of structure and order (Emperor) .

Yves Saint Laurent (right) and Pierre Berger (left).

Yves Saint Laurent (right) and Pierre Berger (left).

Think about this. During his most creative years, Yves St. Laurent had as his close associate Pierre Bergé. St. Laurent was the creative genius, Bergé was CEO and marketing.

Bergé and St. Laurent – the Emperor and the Magician.

When we are clear as to whether we are in “creative” (Magician) or in “sustaining” (Emperor) modes, we can better understand not only our roles and responsibilities, but also our strengths and weaknesses.

For about twenty years, I’ve been the lead creative scientist in two different companies. When I’ve been in “creative” mode, I bump into walls. It’s been vitally important for me to have others in the CEO (and COO and CFO) roles.

Similarly, creative geniuses in the performing arts – say, choreographers and conductors – need the support of an Executive Director to carry out the business responsibilities, and an effective Board of Directors to shape the organization.

Visionaries need Sustainers; Magicians need Emperors. Being clear about this distinction helps us understand how to shift gears and allocate not only our time and priorities, but our long-term attention within our professional lives.


Men Tend to “Bundle” Their Feminine Archetypes into Their Lover Persona


When men simplify their inner feminine archetypes into the single Lover, they also lose valuable distinctions.

Just as women often “bundle” their masculine archetypes into one convenient catch-all Amazon, men similarly tend to “bundle” all of their feminine archetypes into one convenient Lover mode. In my recent blogpost, Moore and Gillette, King, Warrior, Magician, Lover – 2 1/3 Out of Four Ain’t Bad!, I analyzed the work of Moore and Gillette, whose book bundles the core feminine archetypes into the Lover.


“Bundling” is a Convenient Shorthand, But Doesn’t Solve the “Big Picture”


When we “bundle,” we tend to simplify too much.

An “unbalanced understanding” leads to being lopsided – like the Leaning Tower of Pisa!

For real life mastery, we need to know, understand, and cultivate each of our six core power archetypes (both masculine and feminine), and know how to use our reserve or “battery-power back-up” archetypes as well.

Each Core Archetype Comes in Both Masculine and Feminine Forms

Each archetype has its own masculine and feminine complements.

For example, the High Priestess also appears as the Sage, or Wise Man.

The Green Man appears in feminine mode as Artemis or Diana, the original “woman who ran with the wolves.”

Even those archetypes that would seem to be most gender-specific have their complementary realizations within the opposite gender. For example, the building and sustaining aspect of the Emperor is found in the Roman goddess Minerva, who sprang (fully formed) from the head of her father Zeus.

Think also that the passionate and free Hathor archetype finds her masculine complement in Dionysus, who was fond of both sex and wine. (Think of a “Dionysian feast”!)

The Best Strategy

The best strategy is to master each archetype, in order, one by one.


Bogart and Bergman in Casablanca.

Ultimately, we need to combine – within ourselves – the strengths and values of each of our core archetypes.

Let’s keep in mind that we have an “end-game.” We’re shooting for a final stage (for this particular “journey”) of integration – being able to access and use each archetype at will.

If we desire to be creative, we need to have both our Magician and our High Priestess archetypes. the High Priestess gives us the opportunity to “fill our well.” (See Julia Cameron’s The Artist’s Way.

If we desire to lead effectively within any organization, we need the ability to “treat people warmly” and “treat issues coldly.” We need both our Empress and Emperor. (See Micheal F. Andrew’s How to Think Like a CEO.

For whatever tasks and challenges lie ahead, we need to access all of our potential. This is the fist stage in the path to personal mastery.

Alay'nya - author of "Unveiling: The Inner Journey"

Alay’nya – author of Unveiling: The Inner Journey

Very best wishes as you unveil yourself to yourself in your own inner journey!

(Alianna J. Maren, Ph.D.)

Author of Unveiling: The Inner Journey
You are the Jewel in the Heart of the Lotus. Become the Jewel!

This Unveiling blog is the theory – archetypes, life journeys, integration. For the practicum, go to the Alay’nya Studio blog – body awareness, movement and dance, Fountain of Youth (energy circulation exercises), and more!


Connect with Alay’nya and the Unveiling Community

P.S. Learning about an authentic women’s pathway was important in my own breakthroughs.

Valerie Frankel has written several books on this subject; I’ve discovered them since writing my own book.

Check out Valerie’s works:

  • Did you grow up with Buffy? Is a sister, niece, or favorite student a Buffy fanatic? Help her learn how Buffy defines the Heroines’ Journey – and so much more! Read and give Buffy and the Heroine’s Journey: Vampire Slayer as Feminine Chosen One.
  • Ever wished that there was a book like Campbell’s “The Man with a Thousand Faces” – written for you? Your own heroine’s archetypal journey! What do myths, legends, fairy tales, and folklore from around the world have to say about you and your own journey? Valerie Frankel’s From Girl to Goddess is applicable at all stages of our lives.
  • Game of Thrones devotee? Valerie has other great books out. Check out Valerie’s Game of Thrones e-book on Amazon!



Valerie Frankel, Author of From Girl to Goddess, on Unveiling: The Inner Journey

What does Valerie Frankel, author of books such as From Girl to Goddess and Buffy and the Heroine’s Journey: Vampire Slayer as Feminine Chosen One, have to say about Unveiling: The Inner Journey?

Ms. Frankel notes:

“She approaches her topic with devotion but also practicality and a deep intuition of human relationships, explaining though personal experience as well as intense research how the archetypes work and how a woman can channel the lover, mother, amazon and mystic to be all she is meant to become. Teachings of Jung, Murdock, Starhawk, and more appear, from ancient myth to modern culture.

“This is not the hero’s journey but one specific to the woman, or rather, many women on many different stages of journeying.

Read this and more reviews of Unveiling: The Inner Journey.





Copyright (c) 2013, Alay’nya (Alianna J. Maren, Ph.D.). All rights reserved.

Related Posts: Dynamics of Masculine and Feminine Archetypes

Core Archetypes Year-Long Study Guide – The "Big Picture"

Your Master Plan for Understanding and Integrating Each of the Core Power Archetypes

Suppose that you’ve been studying – and using – the power of archetypes in your life for a while now. What will make this year the year in which you achieve personal mastery? What will make this year your breakthrough year, and launch you to a new level of personal success and victory?

You may already understand that as we grow, we go through archetypal “growth stages.” Perhaps no one explains this better than Carol Pearson, in The Hero Within. She walks us through how we go from the not-so-empowered Innocent to the fully-empowered Magician.

You may also know, from reading Caroline Myss’s Sacred Contracts, that we simultaneously access and use several different archetypes. In fact, she has us select “current” and “desired” archetypes from a roster of a few dozen possibilities.

With all these great teachings, there is still something missing when we seek to fully capture the power of archetypes in our lives – the power to be in the right frame of mind for different tasks, relationships, and intentions. This “something missing” was actually laid out for us in the first seven cards of the Tarot’s Major Arcana.

A Master Plan That Goes Back Thousands of Years

The background story tells us that this knowledge actually has a much older provenance than we may have thought. The earliest known Tarot decks are several hundred years old. However, the Major Arcana are based directly on the twenty-two “pathways” connecting “spheres” (Sephiroth) in the Kabbalistic Tree of Life. The Kabbalistic written tradition goes back for hundreds of years; the oral tradition to perhaps a couple of thousand of years. And since the Tree of Life is the earliest known base for esoteric teachings in our culture, the origins may even be earlier. The Tree of Life is mentioned in the earliest known human writings.

In short, it is very likely that a certain “esoteric teaching” – based on mastering six core power archetypes – goes back at least hundreds, and possibly thousands, of years.

Three factors stand out when we undertake this “journey”:

  • The six core power archetypes (together with two reserve battery archetypes) match directly to three of the four “dimensions” used by Carl Jung in creating his Psychological Types,
  • There is a certain order for study and master, and
  • There is an “endgame” – that is, we don’t want to just master these archetypes in isolation; we desire the ability to pull on each one (or several) as needed. That is true mastery, and it is our goal as well.


What is Our Master Plan?

As with all big intentions, it helps us to have a “game plan.”


Our “game plan” is that over the course of a year, we will spend each semi-quarter on each archetype. Integration, we trust, will be something that we take up as we go along. (We may choose to repeat this study for a few years, each time gaining greater levels of insight and refinement,)

A second – yet very important – aspect of our “game plan” is that we’re tying in our intellectual and practical archetype study with our “lab work” – our daily practice of energy exercises and dance movements. We tie all of these together with the appropriate “season”, using the traditional Western esoteric approach of assigning and “element” to each “season.”

  • Winter: Season of Earth (pentacles, the physical body, a “feminine” season),
  • Spring:Season of Air (swords, the mind, a “masculine” season),
  • Summer: Season of Fire (rods, the spirit, a “masculine” season), and
  • Autumn: Season of Water (cups, the emotional realm, a “feminine” season).


Master Plan Overview

Each “element” has a set of qualities associated with it, and a particular focus of attention. Our archetypal study curriculum focuses on intellectual study combined with reflection and exercises that highlight each of the specific “archetypes” for the given semi-quarter. When we combine this with pathworking, we add in elements of spiritual discipline, emotional release work, energy cultivation exercises, and (of course) dance movements and techniques and choreography.

The archetypes that we will consider, are (in order):

Winter Quarter – Season of Earth (Pentacles, a “Feminine” Season)

  • High Priestess: Dec. 21 – Jan 31 Being contemplative and intuitive, a time for gazing into the fire, creating a “vision board” for the coming year, and being open to “dream-time”, and
  • Hestia (a reserve battery archetype): Feb 1 – Mar 20 Spring-cleaning – for our homes and our psyches; the classic “wax on, wax off” approach to opening our minds for insight and guidance.


Spring Quarter – Season of Air (Swords, a “Masculine” Season)

  • Magician: Mar. 21 – April 30 Being a visionary, creating reality according to your “big dream”, and
  • Emperor: May 1 – June 20 Bringing your desired reality into fruition; business plans, project management, process flows, stabilizing your “empire.”


Summer Quarter – Season of Fire (Rods, a “Masculine” Season)

  • Green Man (a reserve battery archetype): June 21 – July 31 Escape to the “great outdoors,” breaking out of the molds that civilization puts on us, and
  • Hierophant: Aug 1 – Sept. 20 Becoming a guru/guide for those younger than us – either in years or in skills and understanding.


Autumn Quarter – Season of Water (Cups, a “Feminine” Season)

  • Hathor (The “Love Goddess”): Sept. 21 – Oct 30 Reveling in sensual beauty and pleasure, and
  • Empress: Oct. 31 – Dec. 20 Connecting, loving, nurturing – sending out Christmas cards and gifts, holiday entertaining, time with family, friends, and loved ones.


Putting the Master Plan Into Action

For this coming year, each semi-quarter will be devoted to the appropriate archetype. I’ll offer resources and guidance, and as you feel led, you can follow up at will. Resources will include:

  • Guest Bloggers: Special invited guests for each different core archetype – Giving you insights from the “best of the best,” together with real-life stories from others who’ve achieved amazing results in different areas of their lives,
  • Suggested Readings: Links to books and online resources – Get greater depth, and
  • Exercises and Checklists (Strictly optional): What to do to get the most out of each archetypal focus.

From time to time, I’ll write about the integration process – how we can combine two or more archetypes to create “mastery” for ourselves in different life situations. I’ll also point the way to what happens after this level of mastery. (Yes, mastery comes in levels – and the whole work with archetypes is simply the first level. However, it’s the level where we need a good foundation before advancing to anything else.)

So here’s to you, with very best wishes for an absolutely awesome coming year!

A Strong "Inner Amazon" – Our Most Powerful Ally!

Our “Inner Amazon” – Strength at Our Service

When Antonia Wolff, the protege of Carl Jung, intuited her understanding of the four “modes” that made up the feminine psyche, she did a great job of describing three “feminine” or “soft” archetypes, and one that she labeled the Amazon. She published her work as a pamphlet; Structural Forms of the Feminine Psyche.

Wolff’s delineation gives us a very useful way to “look inside ourselves.” Functionally, we each have eight core archetypes (four masculine, and four feminine), and six of these (three masculine, and three feminine) are our power archetypes. These are the ones – according to the Kabbalah (and shown visually in the Major Arcana) – that we need to cultivate in order to become a fully integrated person. (The remaining two, it seems, are those which we naturally use as “rest-and-recharge” modes.)

When we women “look inside ourselves,” we easily see our three feminine modes or archetypes; our wise, intuitive, and calm High Priestess, our loving and nurturing Isis or Empress, and our sensual, fun-loving, and playful Hathor or Love-Goddess. We can also easily discern our feminine “rest-and-recharge” mode; Hestia. This is when we clean house in order to clean out our heads.

Because we live in a masculine-dominant world, we see the masculine roles very easily as well. Thus, it is easy for us to discern when we are being in any of our three masculine power archetypes; our creative and visionary Magician, our organizing and managing Emperor, or our guiding and coaching Hierophant. We can also discern when we are in our masculine rest-and-recharge mode, or Green Man. (For women, the Artemis imagery is useful; think of Women Who Run with the Wolves.)

As a side note: If we were male, it would be easy for us to “lump together” our three feminine power archetypes into one. This would be a convenient kind of emotional shorthand. Moore and Gillette did this when they described the four core masculine archetypes as King, Warrior, Magician, Lover. In their “typology,” they’ve combined all three feminine power archetypes into one, and called it the Lover. Not completely accurate, but useful. Or rather, this is as useful a shorthand for men as it is for women to think about their inner Amazon. Each is a compound of three modes, but each of these “compound archetypes” has something in common.

So what is it that characterizes our inner Amazon, and makes her so distinctly different from our other three feminine power archetypes? And at the same time, we could be asking ourselves: What is distinctly different about the Lover “compound archetype” that makes it unique when compared with the three power masculine archetypes? (These are the Emperor, Magician, and Hierophant – Moore and Gillette missed this last one, and instead substituted the Warrior archetype – which is transition mode, not a power archetype. More on that in some future blog.)

The answer is simple. (Keep in mind, now, that we’re talking archetypes – overarching and really rather simple modes, and that we each have some aspects of each of these archetypes in us.)

The masculine archetypes are all Judging, to use Jung’s terminology. That means, they are all “come-to-closure” archetypes. (This is what Jung meant with Judging; this is not about being “judgmental” about people.) The feminine archetypes are all Perceiving; that is, they are more open-ended. They are open to possibilities and connections.

In short, the basic “male psychology” (each of the core masculine power archetypes) likes to compartmentalize-and-complete. The basic “feminine psychology” (each of the core feminine power archetypes) likes to connect-connect-connect. This insight is what led authors Bill and Pam Farrell to write their book, Men Are Like Waffles – Women Are Like Spaghetti: Understanding and Delighting in Your Differences.

So with all of this as a frame of reference, we now understand that what our inner Amazon does for us as women is to give us the masculine strength of “getting things done.”

And is this ever a useful gift!

One of the best things that we can do to empower our inner feminine archetypes is to have a strong Amazon living in service of our feminine core. She gets things done, she protects and defends, she provides strong boundaries. Within the boundaries that our Amazon establishes, we get let ourselves go. We can be soft and vulnerable. We can be as “diffuse” as we desire. We can connect-connect-connect – knowing that our Amazon put some structure around our connecting.

Our Amazon is valuable. She is our strongest ally. And the more that we cultivate her, the more we are able to let ourselves go safely into our feminine core. Sounds a bit contradictory, but worth considering. So why not make this a journal topic over the month of February? Re-ignite a hot, sexy, voluptuous love affair with yourself. And let your inner Amazon “live to serve the Queen”!