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believes that, in addition to all lost memories, and the subliminal associations and combinations of these that may occur, an important part of the unconscious results from ‘intentional repression' of painful and incompatible thoughts and feelings.
It is doubtful how far the results of intentional repression correspond with those due to the repressing forces which come into play without any conscious intention, and this latter form of repression is of prime importance in the formation of the Unconscious of Freud. However this may be, Jung explicitly states that the personal' unconscious contains intentional repressions as well as all lost memories and the subliminal combinations they may form.
He calls these contents of the unconscious personal' because they are all derived from experience in the individual life, and are unique in every person. But he postulates another stratum or form of the unconscious which is not the product of experience during the individual life, but is inherited or innate. It contains the psychic potentialities which are common to every individual, such as the instincts and the congenital conditions of intuition—the ‘archetypes of apprehension,' as he calls them. The sum of these inherited psychic potentialities he calls the ‘Collective Unconscious,' because they are common to all men,
and not unique individual contents like those which form the personal unconscious.
The collective unconscious is the part or form of the unconscious on which Jung now lays most stress. Here are to be found the instincts which we all have in common. Here also are those primordial forms of thought and feeling which determine the uniformity of our apprehension of the world and form the basis of intuition. They are the source of all the myths and legends and religions of humanity, whose similarity amongst all peoples and in all ages is accounted for by their common origin in the collective unconscious of the race. In normal life they come to light in more or less disguised form in dreams; in the neuroses they press obtrusively upon the conscious personality, making difficult that adaptation to reality which is man's chief task; in the insanities they break through the accretions of ages of culture and civilisation, and manifest in their primordial forms.
In primitive man, according to Jung, when personal differentiation is only beginning, “his mental function is essentially collective. He is more or less identified with the collective psyche, and therefore without any personal responsibility or inner conflict; his virtues and vices are collective. Conflict only begins when a conscious personal development of the mind has already started.... The repression of the collective psyche, in so far as it was conscious, was a necessity for the development of the personality, because collective psychology and personal psychology are, in a certain sense, irreconcilable....A collective point of view, although it may be necessary, is always dangerous for the individual.”
It is interesting to compare the factors in this repression of the collective unconscious with those involved in the repression of the primitive impulses as described by Freud. The opposition between society and the individual is present in both; but the collective is repressed because it is dangerous to the development of the individual; the primitive impulses are repressed because they are dangerous to the development of society. Repression of the collective is a reaction of the individual against the encroachments of the social consciousness; repression of the impulses is due to a reaction of the social consciousness against the egocentric tendencies of the individual.
In Freud's psychology, the two great subdivisions of the mind are the preconscious and the Unconscious. In the psychology of Jung a similar importance is ascribed to what is personal and what is impersonal or collective. It is evident that the different bases of classification employed by Freud and Jung lead to cross-divisions, so that it is difficult to be sure in what division of the one classification any particular content in the other should be placed. The true Unconscious of Freud would seem to correspond in many respects with the impersonal or collective unconscious of Jung; for the primitive impulses, which form the core of the Freudian Unconscious, and the primary process which it retains as its mode of functioning, must be deemed to have universal validity since they are common to all mankind. In so far, however, as the primitive impulses acquire individual differentiation in infancy, they must be regarded as pertaining to the personal unconscious. But in the true Unconscious of Freud, as in the collective unconscious of Jung, is to be sought the origin of unconscious phantasies, of the language of the dream, and of the myths and legends of humanity.
Such, in barest outline, are the two main conceptions of the nature and content of the unconscious which hold the field in psychopathology at the present time; and I would like to make a few brief comments, (1) on the relation of these views, one to the other, (2) on their relation to certain problems of psychopathology, and (3) on their relation to the science of Psychology as a whole.
Although at first sight there may not seem to be any serious incompatibility between the two views, yet we know they form the foundations on which have been built up two systems of psychopathology and psychotherapeutics which, although they had a common origin, have diverged so much that they seem to be pointing in opposite directions. The differences between the two schools cannot be said to be wholly due to differences about the nature of the unconscious; but some of them are directly dependent upon these, and only in so far as we may find common ground between the two views of the unconscious can we expect to find any common outlook on therapeutic problems and aims.
Jung appears to have discarded Freud's distinction between the preconscious and the unconscious; and this is all the more unfortunate in that he includes so many different kinds of content in the unconscious. At one time he speaks as if the personal unconscious consisted solely of repressed materials of a personal nature; at another time he tells us that in the personal unconscious are to be found all the lost memories as well as intentional repressions of painful and incompatible thoughts and feelings. If we may judge, however, by accounts of analyses conducted by Jung and his pupils, the personal unconscious would seem to have comparatively little importance ascribed to it. The 'undifferentiated co-function’and the myth themes revealed in dream and phantasy seem to be the main objects of interest. The discovery and the adjustment of the individual's relation to the collective unconscious seem to have taken the place of the patient following out of the bypaths into which the Libido has strayed which we associate with Psycho-Analysis.
The undifferentiated co-function is sometimes said to be unconscious because it has been neglected, sometimes merely because it is undifferentiated, and sometimes because it is repressed. If it has merely been neglected, all that should be necessary to restore it to consciousness would be to direct the attention to it. There seems no reason why its restoration should be accompanied by resistance. On the other hand, if it is under repression, we ought to know what is the nature of the repressing forces, and what is the principle to which they conform. Are we supposed to be dealing with the pleasure-pain principle concerned in Freudian repression, or are there other grounds for repression and resistance? The lack of clear indications on this point may be due to the slight emphasis which Jung now seems to put upon repression, but when repression is absent, resistance in analysis should be absent also, unless some reason for resistance, other than repression, can be given.
An interesting feature of the work of the Swiss school is the way they deal with the myth themes and the symbolisms of dreams. They seem to deny the need for a reductive interpretation of these psychic
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formations, and they lay so much stress on the importance of their anagogic interpretation that they seem to regard the appearance of a myth theme in dreams as affording an infallible indication of the life-line that the patient must follow if he is to escape from his neurosis.
The potentiality of human imagination which enables each individual to generate within his mind the great primordial images, is a problem of great interest to genetic psychology. Jung seems to guard himself against the implication-inherent in much of his writing—that the primordial images are themselves inherited, and asserts only that the potentiality for the formation of such images is part of the innate endowment of the mind. The need for this caution seems based on a belief that bodily inheritance is in some way more real and more explicable than mental inheritance, but it is doubtful if there are any good grounds for such a belief. For just as in the unfolding of the bodily organs from the material germ we find the recapitulation of our ancestry revealed by such archaic remnants as the gill-slits and the swim-bladder, so in the unfolding of the mind we find a stage or level in which the primordial images reappear in their original form. And so, not only is the capacity for myth and symbol formation innate in the mind, but the very symbols and myths themselves, which our forefathers formed, are there also from the beginning. Dr Ernest Jones believes that they are produced anew by each individual, in virtue of the uniformity of the ways in which the human mind reacts to those primordial interests on which myth and symbol are founded, but Freud, if I understand him aright, is inclined in this matter to adopt a view very similar to that of Jung, and to believe that these archaic products of human imagination are there, in each individual mind, from the beginning.
The Freudian view of the Unconscious is more definite and precise than that of the Swiss school. It is just the infantile mind, still subject to the primary process, and still striving for the gratification of the primitive impulses. Complicating this simplicity, however, is the fact that preconscious contents may fall under the sway of unconscious wishes, and, being thereby charged with the affective tone of the Unconscious, become subject to a censorship which prevents their emergence into consciousness. Notwithstanding this possibility and its farreaching consequences, we may still feel it hard to believe that everything in the mind that cannot enter consciousness is under direct or indirect repression. This difficulty is especially acute when we consider the creative side of mental activity. We get here the impression-conforming to Jung's view—that some things do not enter into consciousness
because they are not yet ripe or ready to do so. Presumably such ideas belong to the preconscious system, and their non-emergence into consciousness is due to a lack of the intensity necessary to enable them to cross the threshold. But when we survey the whole field of man's mental activity, and take cognisance of those of its products which show signs of subliminal incubation, we may sometimes be in doubt concerning the regional localisation of processes which, in the descriptive, if not in the systematic sense, are unconscious.
This difficulty of fitting into the analytic frame-work certain facts of observation is met with also in the field of abnormal psychology. In pre-analytic days, the hypothesis of mental dissociation was our most widely useful concept in the study of abnormal states. From the beginning, Freud tacitly accepted the fact of dissociation, and seemed to imply that only in the explanation of how it is brought about did he differ from Janet's views on this matter. Substituting certain dynamic forces for Janet's misère psychologique he left us to suppose that every form of dissociation could be ascribed to mental conflict and repression. But when we consider such a form of dissociation as, for example, a hysterical paralysis of the arm, we see that on Janet's hypothesis the ideas and feelings related to the use of the arm have become dissociated from the personal consciousness. According to Freud, however, dissociation in such a case bears primarily on a totally different system of ideas. It bears on some wish, which, after being dissociated as a result of mental conflict and repression, becomes converted into this particular physical disability. But the motor disability is itself a dissociation as Janet has shown, and it is not a dissociation directly due to conflict and repression. It is due to an 'adaptation for conversion' which, apart from the bare statement of its occurrence, Freudian doctrine has done nothing to explain.
Hypnotic dissociation, and the dissociation of somnambulism and of multiple personality, present difficulties of another kind. Here it may be supposed that dissociation in mass of all the thoughts, feelings and actions related to some painful experience, or to one side of one's character, may be due to conflict and repression; but the subsequent behaviour of the 'secondary state' or secondary personality does not seem to conform to any of the mechanisms described by the psycho-analysts.
Again, as I have frequently pointed out, analytic doctrine takes no account of the problem of co-consciousness—indeed the very existence of such a problem is denied by Freud. He does not seem to have met with any clear example of it, and in his references to this subject he