Think Of The Homeless

There are over 30 million Americans who live on the streets of our nation. Can you consider giving something to a shelter near you? Your fellow human beings need socks because they walk everywhere. Food and shelter are great too, if they will take them. So please give.

Monday, October 26, 2009

Reviews by Hubie Goode: Still Living With Freud 5?

After all our advances in science and medicine, Are We Still Living With Freud? Pt. 5

Having written here in this blog on the effects of Social Darwinism, I can now comment on the connection between the two ideologies and Freud’s take on them. Freud wrote in his tome, Civilization and Its Discontents:

The analogy between the process of cultural evolution and the path of individual development may be carried further in an important respect. It can be maintained that the community, too, develops a superego, under whos influence cultural evolution proceeds. It would be an enticing task for an authority on human systems of culture to work out this analogy in specific cases. I will confine myself to pointing out certain striking details. The super ego of any given epoch of civilization originates in the same way as that of an individual; it is based on the impression left behind by great personalities, men of outstanding force of mind, or men in whom some human tendency has developed in an usual strength and purity, often for that reason very disproportionately.

Once we’ve discussed Social Darwinism, we can also comment on Freud’s attitude toward Christianity:

In many instances, the analogy goes even further, in that during their lives, often enough, even if not always, such persons are ridiculed by others, ill used, or even cruelly done to death, just as happened with the primal father who also rose again to become deity long after his death by violence. The most striking example of this fate is the figure of Jesus Christ, if indeed it does not belong itself to the realm of mythology, which called it into being out of a dim memory of that primordial event.

Both these statements display an ability to project his ideas from the specific person and into the society as a whole. In them he seconds Social Evolution and describes how society as a whole is in itself a personality and is vying for a piece of libido.

Freud was not hesitant to voice his opinion about religion, and by this we can safely assume he meant Christianity. Individuals, he proposed, tend to become psychotic when they are frustrated and despair at the possibility of revolution within a society.

According to Freud, religion assigns measures of choice and adaptation by taking a blanket stance for all involved in the acquisition of happiness and the avoidance of pain. It’s method gives redundancy to the value of life and relays the real world with a sort of twisted illusion, thus intimidating any and all intelligence with the sheer weight of its incomprehensibility. By forcing a type of mental infantilism on the populace it can actually save many from debilitating neurosis. He felt there were many paths by which happiness could be reached, but none which were certain to deliver. He included religion in this also. His position was that when men speak of God’s almightiness that he eliminates himself and assigns his life to terminal suffering and only the solace of unconditional submission as his last resort for happiness. For Freud, this was a rather long road to travel for something, namely happiness, which could have been achieved by abbreviated ends.

Therefore, Freud saw all religion, everywhere, as a sort of mental infantilism, a mass delusion if you will. Reading Freud’s opinions of religion we can hear the arguments of every primary person who ever took up a case against Jesus in the construction of his many fanciful and clever psychological remarks which give ammunition to anyone who want’s to express contempt for God. But he had to do this, for it was psychoanalysis that was the NEW revelation, and psychotherapy that was the NEW salvation. Anyone who has ever read atheist material realizes that Freud may have not only been the father of modern psychoanalysis, but also much, much more.

Freud, as it turns out, was much more simple than one would imagine. In fact he had a rather quaint comparison to the “man behind the curtain” in the Wizard of Oz. It can be argued that he was merely attaching names to conditions that he believed were within the human psyche, this, based upon his own authority, not any empirical evidence, and was able to get away with it because his so called science was NEW to the world. So who could prove him wrong? Can you or I look into the so called Id, ego and superego and point to the error Freud made? Nope. Neither could he, so it was quite easy for him to ascribe names and conditions to a patients problems despite any evidence at all.

It is a natural thing for us as humans to respond when we hear of things that are new with words we have never heard before, with a kind of childlike curiosity. At this point we are not reacting with any defensive outrage or loving ascription because the issue is interesting rather than compelling. We only become suspicious at the point when explanations fail to materialize or perhaps the explanations themselves become ethereal and unresolvable.

Our suspicions only become allied when we are persuaded by office. We ask ourselves, Isn’t he a doctor? Didn’t he go to college? Who am I to question? The general public of Freud’s day treated the things they did not understand with due deference and therefore were not the first to disagree with Freud’s opinions on things. In fact, they still have not done so to this day.

He was looked upon with a kind of fascination and embarrassment. The public found him entertaining and wondered what he would say next. He had opened a doorway, so it would seem, into a fascinating aspect of ourselves, one which no one had ever been able to delineate before and laid it out before us in a kind of Indiana Jones serial fashion. Forget the fact that he changed his own theories quite frequently, or that his data came from unconfirmed sources and unconfirmed testimonies of privately interviewed patients, many written testimonies of which were destroyed by he, himself.

The public has made Freud a household figure. A rock star of sorts, the father of pop psychology. When a person makes a verbal mistake his action is called a “Freudian slip”. Sexual determinism is considered a school of thought and not a depraved machination. The mysteries of the inner soul are automatically believed to be described by Freud, and there isn’t a shred of evidence to back it up.

more in part 6

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