During the latter part of the nineteenth century there was a considerable upsurge of interest in occult and esoteric ideas with a particular fascination for Eastern thought and Eastern traditions. Hindu yogis and swamis were in England giving lectures and demonstrations, Buddhist texts were being translated into European languages for the first time and groups such as the Theosophical Society and the Golden Dawn were promoting all manner of exotic ideas new to the European mind.
Parallel to this revival of interest in the mystical and the esoteric, within the scientific community there was a growing interest in the inner workings of the mind. The science of psychology was beginning to become established and the developing study of psycho-analysis was beginning to gain increasing acceptance. Within this movement, both Sigmund Freud and Carl Gustav Jung were pioneering a whole new way of looking at the human condition and at human consciousness. In addition to his scientific training as both a physician and a psychiatrist, Jung in particular also developed an interest in a whole range of hermetic thought, both Eastern and European. Like any serious scholar of the Renaissance period, he was not only accomplished in the science of his day but also saw value and reason in the study of alchemy, astrology and other divinatory systems such as the I Ching. Although he never wrote on chirology itself, he had his handprints taken on several occasions and it is well known that he was sympathetic towards the study of chirology and was well aware of its value as a means of gaining selfunderstanding. Much in the same way as Achillinus penned the approbation that prefaced Cocles' first work, so Jung also penned the foreword to the only book written on hands by a trained psycho-analyst, Julius Spier.
'The Spellbinding Power of Palmistry'