Carl Jung

Child Archetype

By Tamara Hilbert


The child archetype is one of the most common archetypes experienced by individuals.  Jung’s child archetype is often represented in mythology and art by children, infants most especially, as well as other small creatures.  The mature personality of the child archetype nurtures that part of ourselves that longs to be lighthearted, innocent and expectant of the wonders of tomorrow, regardless of our age.  This part of our nature contributes greatly to our ability to sense a playfulness in our lives, balancing the seriousness of adult life.  The balanced child is a delight to be around because the energy flow from this part of our personality is positively infectious and brings out the best in others, as well as in ourselves.


The child archetype is a pattern related to the hope and promise for new beginning.  It promises that paradise can be regained.  Images recalling the “paradise state of the innocent connect is to a complex of psychic energy that is released into consciousness as a profound sense of hope for the future.  The type of image promises the forgiveness of sins, a wiping of the slate, a fresh new beginning.  The New Year’s Babe, Moses in his basket and the Christ Child are examples of Child Archetype images that are frequently encountered in our culture.  These images connect us to mysterious sources of creative energy.  Once we have lost our innocence, images which channel the energy of the Child Archetype into our lives fill us with hope for the future and give us strength to grow.