In the history of the treatment of depression, there was the dunking stool, purging of the bowels of black bile, hoses, attempts to shock the patient. All of these represent hatred or aggression towards what depression represents in the patient.

James Hillman

Whether we like it or not, men have more of the offices, more of the higher jobs, more of the seats in Congress. Men need to re-examine what their power is. We need to understand how to use it.

James Hillman

I know my own deficiencies, one of which is that I had lived away from America for such a long time. It’s called expatriate.

James Hillman

We can’t change anything until we get some fresh ideas, until we begin to see things differently.

James Hillman

We need to work on the world so it will not be so oppressive.

James Hillman

We’re an air bag society that wants guarantees on everything that we buy. We want to be able to take everything back and get another one. We want a 401-k plan and Social Security.

James Hillman

When they talk about family values, it’s in a repressive way, as if our American tradition were only the Puritan tradition or the 19th century oppressive tradition. The Christian tradition.

James Hillman

We carve out risk-free lives where nothing happens.

James Hillman

You don’t attack the grunts of Vietnam; you blame the theory behind the war. Nobody who fought in that war was at fault. It was the war itself that was at fault. It’s the same thing with psychotherapy.

James Hillman

We approach people the same way we approach our cars. We take the poor kid to a doctor and ask, What’s wrong with him, how much will it cost, and when can I pick him up?

James Hillman

Instead of seeing depression as a dysfunction, it is a functioning phenomenon. It stops you cold, sets you down, makes you damn miserable.

James Hillman

We forget that the soul has its own ancestors.

James Hillman

If you are still being hurt by an event that happened to you at twelve, it is the thought that is hurting you now.

James Hillman

I’m the result of upbringing, class, race, gender, social prejudices, and economics. So I’m a victim again. A result.

James Hillman

I’m cautious about a lot of words.

James Hillman

I think we’re miserable partly because we have only one god, and that’s economics.

James Hillman

I see happiness as a by-product. I don’t think you can pursue happiness. I think that phrase is one of the very few mistakes the Founding Fathers made.

James Hillman

You don’t know what you’re going to get into when you follow your bliss.

James Hillman

It is impossible to see the angel unless you first have a notion of it.

James Hillman

All we can do when we think of kids today is think of more hours of school, earlier age at the computer, and curfews. Who would want to grow up in that world?

James Hillman

As Plotinus tells us, we elected the body, the parents, the place, and the circumstances that suited the soul and that, as the myth says, belongs to its necessity.

James Hillman

Depression opens the door to beauty of some kind.

James Hillman

We have to give value to authority. We have to give value to office, being in office, holding office.

James Hillman

I don’t think anything changes until ideas change. The usual American viewpoint is to believe that something is wrong with the person.

James Hillman

Too many people have been analyzing their pasts, their childhoods, their memories, their parents, and realizing that it doesn’t do anything-or that it doesn’t do enough.

James Hillman

It’s important to ask yourself, How am I useful to others? What do people want from me? That may very well reveal what you are here for.

James Hillman

It’s very hard to know what wisdom is.

James Hillman

The word power has such a generally negative implication in our society. What are people talking about? Are they talking about muscles, or control?

James Hillman

Just stop for a minute and you’ll realize you’re happy just being. I think it’s the pursuit that screws up happiness. If we drop the pursuit, it’s right here.

James Hillman

Loss means losing what was We want to change but we don’t want to lose. Without time for loss, we don’t have time for soul.

James Hillman

Psychotherapy theory turns it all on you: you are the one who is wrong. If a kid is having trouble or is discouraged, the problem is not just inside the kid; it’s also in the system, the society.

James Hillman

Sooner or later something seems to call us onto a particular path… this is what I must do, this is what I’ve got to have. This is who I am.

James Hillman

The circumstances, including my body and my parents, whom I may curse, are my soul’s own choice and I do not understand this because I have forgotten.

James Hillman

The culture is going into a psychological depression. We are concerned about our place in the world, about being competitive: Will my children have as much as I have? Will I ever own my own home? How can I pay for a new car? Are immigrants taking away my white world?

James Hillman

It’s very important for men to look downward, to the next generation.

James Hillman