- Sleep Science (Biology, Chemistry, Neurology)
- Near Death Experiences
- Current Physics
- Recent Prophecies That Came True
This Page Is Under Construction
Near Death Experiences
Psychology has always placed significance in dreams. The root word psyche classically means soul and spirit, as much as it indicates the mind. While there are those within the field focused on groups or the collective species, the individual has always been of prime importance. The relationship to the inner workings, the root mind-spirit-soul and/or the Self have always fallen under its purview. Dreaming is usually considered a way to know that self, even if the contents of a dream seem random, chaotic or a composite of the day’s events.
“[T]he experience of the self is almost impossible to practically distinguish from the experience of “what has always been referred to as ‘God.’”
— C.G. Jung via Jeffrey Raff
Jung was a person who sought to know himself, and his Self, more intimately through both the subconscious (or in his terms unconsciouses) and his higher mind (in frequent contrast to his underworld-tunnel-vision peer Freud, who nonetheless also provided us with useful insight about dreaming in his work). Though usually cited within secular psychology, Jung’s work is interwoven with spirituality, alchemy and dreaming. He wasn’t the first and would not be the last…
Fittingly, these two icons of 20th century psychology offer us two archetypes. Together they represent the dichotomous schism in current psychology.
On the one hand, we have a man who finds the union of his spirituality (via the collective unconscious) and his individual self to be fruitful for psychological development, revealing part of his true baser and higher desires.
On the other, we have a man who finds his religious thoughts and feelings to be inhibiting to it – every single one an illusion with no inspiration, covering up his true baser desires.
“Jung de-emphasized the importance of sexual development and focused on the collective unconscious: the part of the unconscious that contains memories and ideas that Jung believed were inherited from ancestors. While he did think that libido was an important source for personal growth, unlike Freud, Jung did not believe that libido alone was responsible for the formation of the core personality.'”
– Heth Carlson via Wikipedia
Yet they both agree we can learn something about ourselves by looking at our dreams and what they mean to us. They both offer insight we can consider including in our own approaches to our minds.
Clearly, my bias is in favor of Jung. All of us have one, hence this disclaimer. Yet, it is because of his inclusion of insights from Freud that I have this preference. It is the integration of multiple aspects, rather than choosing one as prime mover, which is the reason I lean this way. Rather than choose sides, though, I seek to learn from both.
As to dreaming, Jung felt :::
From Freud we can glean :::
There are recent developments in psychology which have afforded both scientific understanding and respect for the spiritual beliefs of the individual in question. Some schools of thought that include the validation of spiritual-religious thinking itself are :::
Even if not based upon the inclusion of spirituality in theory, other schools of thought also afford this view in the individual in question. :::
In my view, whether our beliefs align with another’s matters not. They usually don’t, even within the same religious identity, and there is no reason to treat aetheism, monotheism or animism as lesser in this regard. From the scientific view, we have no solid answer. From the spiritual-religious view, we have no right to force the choice. We may offer new ways of thinking, new options to others, but when we act as though it is our place to implore our correct belief system upon others, through conversation or psychiatric treatment, we are betraying ourselves and each other in some manner.
Perhaps, one key point we can productively agree upon, whatever the case, is that an individual’s belief system itself is not a cause for concern. The cause for concern has always been potential harm and loss of inner peace. Some may focus on functioning in society according to some standard, or personal happiness, or physical health, or self approval, or some other measure of mental health. Whatever the goal, we will be most successful when we operate within the core belief system of the individual and respect their autonomy; while also seeking to question but not argue with or degrade any beliefs that do result in internal conflict or the individual’s own feelings of undesired results. In my experience and research, harm to others or self usually stems from one of these two roots.
Internal conflict may lead us to act brashly, harshly or fearfully. Undesired results may lead us to act fearfully, unwisely or imposingly.
As to practicing psychology and defining the education given to young psychology majors: Rather than focusing on correcting someone in comparison to what we see as the objectively correct mode of thinking or structure of the psyche, should we not focus on the individual’s own experience in a way that encourages and respects a person instead of degrades them? Shouldn’t we practice this on ourselves as well?