Chaos in our lives can be transformed to a degree into order by the
psychic process of drawing a mandala, a universal psychic symbol for order.
Chaos and cosmos exist together even at the quantum level. The quantum
foam of science is comparable to the chaos of alchemy. Translating an
alchemical work, Jung (1980) describes chaos as an “assortment of crude
disordered matter.... [which nevertheless contains the] divine seeds of life”
(pp. 144-145). This chaos-order relationship is also embedded in the Chinese
symbol of yin-yang as shown in Figure 12 with a Jungian interpretation.
Figure 12. The Yin/Yang Model.
The perfect circle, a symbol for linearity and order, uses B
(the Greek letter pi) for its
circumference = B x diameter
But, B cannot be calculated exactly; it must always be
rounded off and is therefore nonlinear. Pi is a chaotic number in the sense that
it is undeterminable. For this reason, the circle is a good example of how chaos
and order work together in perfect harmony (Peitgen, Jurgens, & Saupe,
Jung (1990) saw the circle as a mandala, “the psychological expression
of the totality of the self” (p. 304). According to Jaffé (1964), the circle
is also a symbol of the psyche, while the symbol for the body is a square. Like
the circle, the psyche can exhibit both stable and unstable modes, and it
includes both conscious and unconscious aspects, as suggested by the yin-yang
model in Figure 12.