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Unconscious mind Essay

?Carl Gustav Jung (1875-1960) believes in the existence of the unconscious. However, he does not see the unconscious as animalistic, instinctual, or sexual; like Sigmund Freud; he sees it as more spiritual (Cherry 2013). He did spend time working with Sigmund Freud which had a major impact on Jung’s later theories and helped him develop a fascination for the unconscious mind. Jung wanted to further understanding of the human mind through dreams, myth, art and philosophy (Cherry 2013). Jung believed the human psyche exists in three parts: the ego (the conscious mind), the personal unconscious and the collective unconscious.

Images sensed by the ego are said to be conscious. The ego thus represents the conscious side of personality, and in the psychologically mature individual, the ego is secondary to the self (Mcgraw-Hill 2003). The unconscious refers to those psychic images not sensed by the ego. Jung divided the unconscious into the personal unconscious, which contains the complexes (core pattern of emotions, memories, perceptions), and the collective unconscious, or ideas that are beyond our personal experiences and that originate from the repeated experiences of our ancestors (Mcgraw-Hill 2003).

Jung believed the collective unconscious was a reservoir of all the experience and knowledge of the human species (Cherry 2013). Jung’s most famous theory is that of the collective unconscious, a shared memory of symbols, imagery, and memories that he called archetypes. (Mannion 2013). Archetypes are not the memories of actual physical experiences, but rather the repetitive subjective emotional reactions to repeated human experiences are impressed on our unconscious mental processes (Mcgraw-Hill 2003).

This internal state, this predisposition to react in certain ways is inherited. Examples of a couple of the archetypes are; Shadow and Anima-Animus (Mcgraw-Hill 2003). Jung called his equivalent of Freud’s, Id and Superego combined the Shadow. The Shadow is, in simple terms, a person’s dark side, the impulses and desires and traits that remain beneath the surface after years of parental and societal pressure. Jung felt people have a tendency to project those negative shadow elements on people that we dislike (Mannion 2013).

To reach full psychological maturity, Jung believed, we must first realize or accept our shadow. Another archetype is Anime-Animus, Jung proposed that within every man there is an inner woman, and within every woman there is an inner man — a feminine and masculine energy, actually, which he labeled the anima (inner woman) and animus (inner man) (Mannion 2013). He felt that you had to embrace that side of yourself and own it in order to have optimum mental health. If the anima or animus was too powerful or too passive, you were prone to psychological problems (Mannion 2013).

Other archetypes include the great mother (the archetype of nourishment and destruction); the wise old man (the archetype of wisdom and meaning); and the hero, (the image we have of a conqueror who vanquishes evil, but who has a single fatal flaw). (Mcgraw-Hill 2003). The most comprehensive archetype is the self; that is, the image we have of fulfillment, completion, or perfection. The ultimate in psychological maturity is self-realization (Mcgraw-Hill 2003). References:

Cherry, Kendra; Carl Jung Biography (1875-1961); About. Retrieved Sept 11, 2013 from http://psychology. about. com/od/profilesofmajorthinkers/p/jungprofile. htm Mannion, James; Carl Gustav Jung. Retreived Sept, 11 from: http://www. netplaces. com/philosophy-book/psychology/carl-gustav-jung. html Magraw-Hill; Psychodynamic Theories Jung: Analytical Psychology. Theories of Personalities. Retrieved Sept 10, 2013 from: http://highered. mcgrawhill. com/sites/0072316799/student_view0/part2/chapter4/chapter_outline. html#


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