Trading is a business. Trading is an art. Trading is hell. Or maybe trading is an unfolding path that differs for each individual trader.
Becoming an individual is important in Jungian Psychotherapy. Shedding collective opinions and societal beliefs is part of the process Jung called individuation. Individuation is a lifelong personal growth process that connects an individual to his or her deepest Self (the guiding center of the psyche).
Can the Self guide an individual into trading? Certainly. A trip down through Hades (the Greek underworld) is the Self’s way of initiating a trader into the art of suffering. Treading fearfully through the darkness of the underworld like a blind man is one image of a trader’s life.
Of course, there is deceptive purpose for this guidance. The only way through the black hell is to develop the Self’s gift of intuition. To navigate successfully through the suffering of the burning and dark emotions that are ignited by large trading losses or account wipeouts takes more than the ego’s (conscious mind’s) willpower in order to survive and ultimately transcend. This is when listening to the Self’s intuitive guidance becomes a survival skill. You don’t want to end up a burned-out trader.
Even though Job was a righteous man—he read the right trading books, went to the proper trading schools, and spouted the right trading jargon—he was still tested by God. Some theologians, including Jung, think Job was tested because of his “right”eousness.
Out of the fear of being burned for blasphemy, I didn’t previously mention the Self is also the God-image in the psyche. So, can trading be called a spiritual path? Yes, definitely.
But is trading a path of Self-development or a cheap journey worshiping the god of money?