From Matter to Life to Mind...
AN UNFOLDING CONSCIOUSNESS
Karl Marx truth was a weapon to induce social change,
Freud it was
the weapon to induce individual change; awareness was the main agent in
Freud's therapy. If, so Freud found, the patient can gain insight into the
fictitious character of his conscious ideas, if he can grasp the
reality behind these ideas, if he can make the
unconscious conscious, he will attain the strength to rid himself of his
irrationalities and to transform himself...Marx's statement, 'The demand
(for society) to give up the illusions
about its condition is the demand to give up a condition
which needs illusions,' also could have been made by Freud.
Both wanted to free man from the chains of his illusions in
order to enable him to wake up and to act as a free man..."
"Beyond Chains of Illusion - My Encounter with Marx & Freud" by
Erich Fromm... (at
a man asks himself how he ever became interested in those fields of thought
which were destined to occupy the most important place throughout his life, he
will not find it easy to give a simple answer. Perhaps he was born with an
inclination for certain questions, or perhaps it was the influence of certain
teachers, or of current ideas, or of personal experiences which led him along
the path of his later interests - who knows which of these factors have
determined the course of his life? Indeed, if one wanted to know precisely the
relative weight of all these factors, nothing short of a detailed historical
autobiography could even attempt to give the answers..."
I believe that man is the product of natural evolution; that
he is part of nature and yet transcends it, being endowed with reason and
I believe that man's essence is
ascertainable. However, this essence is not a substance
which characterizes man at all times through history. The
essence of man consists in the above-mentioned contradiction
inherent in his existence, and this contradiction forces him
to react in order to find a solution.
Man cannot remain
neutral and passive towards this existential dichotomy. By
the very fact of his being human, he is asked a question by
life: how to overcome the split between himself and the
world outside of him in order to arrive at the experience of
unity and oneness with his fellow man and with nature. Man
has to answer this question every moment of his life. Not
only - or even primarily - with thoughts and words, but by
his mode of being and acting.
I believe that there are a number of limited
and ascertainable answers to this question of existence (the
history of religion and philosophy is a catalogue of these
answers); yet there are basically only two categories of
answers. In one, man attempts to find again harmony with
nature by regression to a pre human form of existence,
eliminating his specifically human qualities-of reason and
love. In the other, his goal is the full development of his
human powers until he reaches a new harmony with his fellow
man and with nature.
I believe that the first answer is bound to
failure. It leads to death, destruction, suffering and never
to the full growth of man, never to harmony and strength.
The second answer requires the elimination of greed and
egocentricity, it demands discipline, will, and respect for
those who can show the way. Yet, although this answer is the
more difficult one, it is the only answer which is not
doomed to failure. In fact, even before the final goal is
reached, the activity and effort expended in approaching it
has a unifying and integrating effect which intensifies
man's vital energies.
I believe that man's basic alternative is
the choice between life and death. Every act implies this
choice. Man is free to make it, but this freedom is a
limited one. There are many favourable and unfavourable
conditions which incline him - his psychological
constitution, the condition of the specific society into
which he was born, his family, teachers, and the friends he
meets and chooses. It is man's task to enlarge the margin of
freedom, to strengthen the conditions which are conducive to
life as against those which are conducive to death.
Life and death, as spoken of here, are not
the biological states, but states of being, of relating to
the world. Life means constant change, constant birth. Death
means cessation of growth, ossification, repetition. The
unhappy fate of many is that they do not make the choice.
They are neither alive nor dead. Life becomes a burden, an
aimless enterprise, and busyness is the means to protect one
from the torture of being in the land of shadows.
I believe that neither life nor history has
an ultimate meaning which in turn imparts meaning to the
life of the individual or justifies his suffering.
Considering the contradictions and, weaknesses which beset
man's existence, it is only too natural that he seeks for an
`absolute' which gives him the illusion of certainty and
relieves him from conflict, doubt and responsibility. Yet,
no god, neither in theological, philosophical or historical
garments, saves, or condemns man. Only man can find a goal
for life and the means for the realisation of this goal. He
cannot find a saving ultimate or absolute answer but he can
strive for a degree of intensity, depth, and clarity of
experience which gives him the strength to live without
illusions, and to be free.
I believe that no one can 'save' his fellow
man by making the choice for him. All that one man can do
for another is to show him the alternatives truthfully and
lovingly, yet without sentimentality or illusion.
Confrontation with the true alternatives may awaken all the
hidden energies in a person, and enable him to choose life
as against death. If he cannot choose life, no one else can
breathe life into him.
I believe that there are two ways of
arriving at the choice of the good. The first is that of
duty and obedience to moral commands. This way can be
effective, yet one , must consider that in thousands of
years only a minority - have fulfilled even the requirements
of the Ten Commandments. Many more have committed
crimes when they were presented to them as commands by those
in authority. The other way is to develop a taste for and a
sense of well-being in doing what is good or right. By taste
for well-being, I do not mean pleasure in the Benthamian or
Freudian sense. I refer to the sense of heightened aliveness
in which I confirm my powers and my identity.
I believe that education means to acquaint
the young with the best heritage of the human race. But
while much of this heritage is expressed in words, it is
effective only if these words become reality in the person
of the teacher and in the practice and structure of society.
Only the idea which has materialized in the flesh can
influence man; the idea which remains a word only changes
I believe in the perfectibility of man. This
perfectibility means that man can reach his goal, but it
does not mean that he must reach it. If the individual will
not choose life and does not grow, he will by necessity
become destructive, a living corpse. Evilness and self-loss
are as real as are goodness and aliveness. They are the
secondary potentialities of man if he chooses not to realize
his primary potentialities.
I believe that only exceptionally is a man
born as a Saint or as a criminal. Most of us have
dispositions for good and for evil, although the respective
weight of these dispositions varies with individuals. Hence,
our fate is largely determined by those influences which
mould and form the given disposition. The family is the most
important influence. But the family itself is mainly an
agent of society, the transmission belt for those values and
norms which a society wants to impress on its members.
Hence, the most important factor for the development of the
individual is the structure and the values of the society
into which he has been born.
I believe that society has both a furthering
and an inhibiting function. Only in co-operation with others
and in the process of work, does man develop his powers,
only in the historical process does he create himself. But
at the same time, most societies until now have served the
aims of the few who wanted to use the many. Hence they had
to use their power to stultify and intimidate the many (and
thus, indirectly, themselves), to prevent them from
developing all their powers; for this reason society has
always conflicted with humanity, with the universal norms
valid for every man. Only when society's aim will have
become identical with the aims of humanity, will society
cease to cripple man and to further evil.
I believe that every man represents
humanity. We are different as to intelligence, health,
talents. Yet we are all one. We are all saints and sinners,
adults and children, and no ,one is anybody's superior or
judge. We have all been awakened with the Buddha, we have
all been crucified with Christ, and we have all killed and
robbed with Genghis Khan, Stalin, and Hitler.
I believe that man can visualize the
experience of the whole universal man only by realizing his
individuality and not by trying to reduce himself to an
abstract, common denominator. Man's task in life is
precisely the paradoxical-one of realizing his individuality
and at the same time transcending it and arriving at the
experience of universality. Only the fully developed
individual self can drop the ego.
I believe that the One World which is
emerging can come into existence only if a New Man comes
into being - a man who has emerged froth the archaic
ties of blood and soil, and who feels himself to be the son
of man, a citizen of the world whose loyalty is to the human
race and to life, rather than to any exclusive part of it; a
man who loves his country because he loves mankind, and
whose judgement is not warped by tribal loyalties.
I believe that man's growth is a process of
continuous birth, of continuous awakening. We are usually
half asleep and only sufficiently awake to go about our
business; but we are not awake enough to go about living,
which is the only task that matters for a living being. The
great leaders of the human race are those who have awakened
man from his half-slumber. The great enemies of humanity are
those who put it to sleep, and it does not matter whether
their sleeping potion is the worship of God or that of the
I believe that the development of man in the
last four thousand years of history is truly awe inspiring.
He has developed his reason to a point where he is solving
the riddles of nature, and has emancipated himself from the
blind power of the natural forces. But at the very moment of
his greatest triumph, when he is at the threshold of a new
world, he has succumbed to the power of the very things and
organizations he has created. He has invented a new method
of producing, and has made production and distribution his
new idol. He worships the work of his hands and has reduced
himself to being the servant of things. He uses the name of
God, of freedom, of humanity, of socialism, in vain ; he
prides himself on his powers - the bombs and the machines -
to cover up his human bankruptcy; he boasts of his power to
destroy in order to hide his human impotence.
I believe that the only force that can save
us from self destruction is reason; the capacity to
recognize the unreality of most of the ideas that man holds,
and to penetrate to the reality veiled by the layers and
layers of deception and ideologies; reason, not, as a body
of knowledge, but as a kind of energy, a force which is
fully comprehensible only in its agency and effects . . . a
force whose 'most important function consists in its power
to bind and to dissolve.' Violence and arms will not save
us; sanity and reason may.
I believe that reason cannot be effective unless man has
hope and belief. Goethe was right when he said that the deepest distinction
between various historical periods is that between belief and disbelief; and
when he added that all epochs in which belief dominates are brilliant,
uplifting, and fruitful, while those in which disbelief dominates vanish
because nobody cares to devote himself to the unfruitful.
No doubt the thirteenth century, the Renaissance, the
Enlightenment, were ages of belief and hope. I am afraid that the Western
World in the twentieth century deceives itself about the fact that it has
lost hope and belief. Truly, where there is no belief in man, the belief in
machines will not save us from vanishing; on the contrary, this 'belief'
will only accelerate the end. Either the Western World will be capable of
creating a renaissance of humanism in which the fullest developments of
man's humanity, and not production and work, are the central issues -- or
the West will perish as many other great civilizations have.
I believe that to recognise the truth is not
primarily a matter of intelligence but a matter of
character. The most important element is the courage to say
no, to disobey the commands of power and of public opinion;
to erase being asleep and to become human; to wake up and
lose the sense of helplessness and futility. Eve and
Prometheus are the two great rebels whose very 'crimes'
liberated mankind. But the capacity to say "no'
meaningfully, implies the capacity to say 'yes'
meaningfully. The `yes' to God is the "no" to Caesar; the
'yes' to man is the `no' to all those who want to enslave,
exploit, and stultify him.
I believe in freedom, in man's right to be himself, to
assert himself and to fight all those who try to prevent him
from being himself. But freedom is more than the absence of
violent oppression. It is more than 'freedom from.' It is
'freedom to' – the freedom to become independent; the
freedom to be much, rather than to have much, or to use
things and people.
I believe that neither Western capitalism
nor Soviet or Chinese communism can solve the problem of the
future. They both create bureaucracies which transform man
into a thing. Man must bring the forces of nature and of
society under his conscious and rational control; but not
under the control of a bureaucracy which administers things
and man, but under the control of the free and associated
producers who administer things and subordinate them to man,
who is the measure of all things. ...
I believe that one of the most disastrous
mistakes in individual and social life consists in being
caught in stereotyped alternatives of thinking. 'Better dead
than red,' 'an alienated industrial civilization or
individualistic pre-industrial society,' `to rearm or to be
helpless,' are examples of such alternatives. There are
always other and new possibilities which become apparent
only when one has liberated oneself from the deathly grip of
clichés, and when one permits the 'voice of humanity, and
reason, to be heard.--The principle of 'the lesser evil' is
the principle of despair. Most of the time it only lengthens
the period until the greater evil wins out. To risk doing
what is right and human, and have faith in the power of the
voice of humanity and truth, is more realistic than the
so-called realism of opportunism.
I believe that man must get rid of illusions
that enslave and paralyse him; that he must become aware of
the reality inside and, outside of him in order to create a
world which needs no illusions. Freedom and independence can
be achieved only when the chains of. illusion are broken.
I believe that today there is only one main
concern: the question of war and peace. Man is likely to
destroy all life on earth, or to destroy all civilized life
and the values among those that remain, and to build a
barbaric, totalitarian organization which will rule what is
left of mankind. To wake up to this danger, to look through
the double talk on all sides which is used to prevent men
from seeing the abyss towards which they are moving is the
one obligation, the one moral and intellectual command which
man must respect today. If he does not, we all will be
If we should all perish in the nuclear
holocaust, it will not be because man was not capable of
becoming human, or that he was inherently evil; it would be
because the consensus of stupidity has prevented him from
seeing reality and acting upon the truth.
I believe in the perfectability of man, but
I doubt whether he will achieve this goal, unless he awakens
Watchman, what of the night ?
The watchman says:Morning comes and also the night
If you will inquire, inquire:
Return, come back again.
On Marx and Freud
Karl Marx truth was a weapon to induce social change,
Freud it was
the weapon to induce individual change; awareness was the
main agent in Freud's therapy. If, so Freud found, the
patient can gain insight into the fictitious character of
his conscious ideas, if he can grasp the reality behind
these ideas, if he can make the unconscious conscious, he
will attain the strength to rid himself of his
irrationalities and to transform himself. Freud's aim,
'Where there is Id there shall be Ego,' can be realized only
through the effort of reason to penetrate fictions and to
arrive at the awareness of reality.
It is precisely this function of reason and truth which
gives psychoanalytic therapy its unique feature among all
forms of therapy. Each analysis of a patient is a new and
original venture of research. While it is true, of course,
that there are general theories and principles which can be
applied, there is no pattern, no 'formula' which could be
applied to the individual patient or be helpful to him if it
were applied. Just as far Marx the political leader must be
a social scientist, so for Freud the therapist must be a
scientist capable of doing research. For both, truth is the
essential medium to transform, respectively, society and the
individual; awareness is the key to social and individual
Marx's statement, "The demand to give up the illusions
about its condition is the demand to give up a condition
which needs illusions,' also could have been made by Freud.
Both wanted to free man from the chains of his illusions in
order to enable him to wake up and to act as a free man.
The … basic element common to both systems ís their
humanism. Humanism in the sense that each man represents all
of humanity; hence, that there is nothing human which could
be alien to him. Marx was rooted in this tradition, of which
Goethe are some of the most outstanding representatives.
Freud expressed his humanism primarily in his concept of the
unconscious. He assumed that all men share the same
unconscious strivings, and hence that they can understand
each other once they dare to delve into the underworld of
the unconscious. He could examine the unconscious fantasies
of his patient without feeling indignant, judgmental, or
even surprised. The 'stuff from which dreams are made' as
well as the whole world of the unconscious became an object
of investigation precisely because Freud recognized its
profoundly human and universal qualities. …. the power of
truth and humanism are the guiding and propelling principles
of Marx's and Freud's work.
Yet this introductory chapter that deals with the common
soil from which both their ideas grew, would be truncated if
it did not deal at least with one other feature common to
both systems: their dynamic and dialectic approach to
reality. The discussion of this topic is all the more
important because in the Anglo Saxon countries Hegelian
philosophy has been a dead issue for a long time so that the
dynamic approach of Marx and Freud is not readily
Let us begin with a few examples, both from the realm of
psychology and that of sociology.
Let us assume a man who has been married three times.
The pattern is always the same. He falls in love with a good
looking girl, marries her, and is ecstatically happy for a
short time. Then he begins to complain that his wife is
domineering, that she curtail, his freedom, etc. After a
period alternating between quarrels and reconciliations, he
falls in love with another girl - in fact, one very similar
to him wife. He gets a divorce and marries his second 'great
love.' However, with slight modifications the same cycle
takes place, and again he falls in love with a similar type
of girl, and again he gets divorced and marries his third
'great love.' Again the same cycle occurs, and be falls in
love with a fourth girl, being convinced that this time it
is the true and real love (forgetting that he was convinced
of that every time in the past), and wants to marry her.
What would we say to the last girl if she asked us our
opinion about the chances for a happy marriage with him?
There are several approaches to the problem. The first one
is a purely behaviouristic one; the method of this approach
is to conclude from past behaviour, the future behaviour.
This argument would run: since he already has left a wife
three times, it is quite likely that he will do it a fourth
time, hence it is much too risky to marry him. This
approach, empirical and sober, has much to be said for it.
But the girl's mother, when using this approach, might
find it difficult to answer one argument of her daughter's.
This argument says that while it is perfectly true that he
did act in the same way three times, it does not follow that
he will do so again this time. Either, so this
counter-argument will say, he has changed - and who can say
that a person may not change? Or the other women were not
really the kind he could love deeply, while she, the last
one, is really congenial to him.
There is no convincing argument the mother could use
against this reasoning. In fact, once she sees the man and
notices that he is very much enraptured with her daughter,
and that he talks with great sincerity about his love, even
the mother might change her mind and be won over to the
The mother's and the daughter's approaches are both
undynamic. They either make a prediction based on past
performance, or one based on present words and actions, yet
they have no way of proving that their predictions are
better than guesswork.
What is in contradistinction, the dynamic approach? The
essential point in this approach is to penetrate through the
surface of past or present behaviour and to understand the
forces which created the pattern of past behaviour. If these
forces still exist, it is to be assumed that the fourth
marriage will end not differently from the previous ones. If
on the other hand, there has been a change in the forces
underlying his behaviour one would have to admit the
possibility or even the likelihood of a different outcome,
in spite of the past behaviour.
What are the forces we speak of here? They are nothing
mysterious, nor figments of abstract speculation. They are
recognizable empirically if one studies the behaviour of the
person in the proper way. We may assume, for instance, that
the man had not cut the tie to his mother; that he is a very
narcissistic person with a deep doubt of his own manliness;
that he is an overgrown adolescent in constant need of
admiration and affection, so that once he has found a woman
who fulfils these needs he gets bored with her soon after
the conquest is made; he needs new proofs of his
attractiveness and hence must look far another woman who can
reassure him. At the same time he is really dependent on
women, afraid of them; and hence any prolonged intimacy
makes him feel imprisoned and chained. The forces at work
here are his narcissism, his dependence, his self-doubt
producing needs which lead to the kind of action we have
These forces, as I said, are by no means the result of
abstract speculation. One can observe them in many ways: by
examining dreams, free association, fantasies, by watching
his facial expression, his gestures, his way of speaking,
and so forth. Yet they are often not directly visible but
must be inferred. Furthermore; they can be seen only within
the theoretical frame of reference in which they have a
place and meaning.
Most importantly, these forces are not only not
conscious as such, but they are in contradiction to the
conscious thought of the person involved. He is sincerely
convinced that he will love the girl forever, that he is not
dependent, that he is strong and self assured. Thus, the
average person thinks: if a man truly feels he loves a woman
how can one predict that he will leave her after a short
time, just by referring to such mythical entities as
'fixation to mother,' 'narcissism,' and so on? Are one's
eyes and ears not better judges than such deductions?…
…. Freud discovered that man as a mental entity is a
structure of forces, many at them contradictory, charged
with energy. Here too, what matters is the scientific task
of understanding the quality, intensity, and direction of
these forces in order to understand the past and predict
alternatives for the future. Here too, change is possible
only inasmuch as the given structure of the forces permits
it. Furthermore, true change in the sense of energy changes
within the given structure does not only require a profound
understanding of these forces and the laws according to
which they move but also great effort and will….
….While in individual psychoanalysis, Freud would look for the
individual factors of repression, it would nevertheless be erroneous to assume
that his concept of repression is to be understood only in individual terms. On
the contrary, Freud's concept of repression also has a social dimension. The
more society develops into higher forms of civilization, the more instinctive
desires become incompatible with the existing social norms, and thus the more
repression must take place. Increasing civilization, to Freud, means increasing
repression. But Freud never went beyond this quantitative and mechanistic
concept of society and he did not examine the specific structure of a society
and its influence on repression.
If the forces which cause repression are so powerful, how did
Freud ever hope to make the unconscious conscious, to 'derepress' the repressed?
It is well known that the psychoanalytic therapy he devised serves precisely
this end. By analysing dreams, and by understanding the 'free associations,' the
uncensored and spontaneous thoughts of the patient, Freud attempted to arrive,
with the patient, at knowing what the patient did not know before his
What were the theoretical premises for this use of the analysis
of dreams and of free association for the discovery of the unconscious?
Doubtlessly in the first years of his psychoanalytic research, Freud shared the
conventional rationalistic belief that knowledge was intellectual, theoretical
knowledge. He thought that it was enough to explain to the patient why certain
developments had taken place, and to tell him what the analyst had discovered in
his unconscious. This intellectual knowledge, called 'interpretation,' was
supposed to effect a change in the patient.
But soon Freud and other analysts had to discover the truth of
statement that intellectual knowledge is conducive to change only inasmuch as it
is also affective knowledge. It became apparent that intellectual knowledge as
such does not produce any change, except perhaps in the sense that by
intellectual knowledge of his unconscious strivings a person may be better able
to control them - which, however, is the aim of traditional ethics, rather than
that of psychoanalysis.
As long as the patient remains in the attitude of the detached
self-observer, he is not in touch with his unconscious, except by thinking about
it; he does not experience the wider, deeper reality within himself.
Discovering one's unconscious is, precisely, not only an
intellectual act, but also an affective experience, which can hardly be put into
words, if at all. This does not mean that thinking and speculation may not
precede the act of discovery; but the act of discovery is not an act of thinking
but of being aware and, still better perhaps, simply of seeing.
To be aware of experiences, thoughts or feelings which were
unconscious, does not mean thinking about them, but seeing them, just as being
aware of one's breathing does not mean to think about it.
Awareness of the unconscious is an experience which is
characterized by its spontaneity and suddenness. One's eyes are suddenly opened;
oneself and the world appear in a different light, are seen from a different
viewpoint. There is usually a good deal of anxiety aroused while the experience
takes place, while afterwards a new feeling of strength is present.
The process of discovering the unconscious can be described as a
series of ever-widening experiences, which are felt deeply and which transcend
theoretical, intellectual knowledge.
In the question of the possibility of
making the unconscious conscious, it is of the foremost importance to recognize
factors which obstruct this process. There are many factors which make it
difficult to arrive at insight into the unconscious. Such factors are mental
rigidity, lack of proper orientation, hopelessness, lack of any possibility to
change realistic conditions, etc.
But there is probably no single factor which is more responsible
for the difficulties of making the unconscious conscious than the mechanism
which Freud called resistance.
What is resistance? Like so many discoveries, it is so simple
that one might say anyone could have discovered it - yet it required a great
discoverer to recognize it.
Let us take an example: your friend has to undertake a trip of
which he is obviously afraid. You know that he is afraid, his wife knows it,
everyone else knows it, but he does not know it. He claims one day that he does
not feel well, the next day that there is no need to make the trip, the day
after that that there arc better ways to achieve the same result without
traveling, then the next day that your persistence in reminding him of the trip
is an attempt to force him, and since he does not want to be forced, he just
won't make the trip, and so on, until he will say that it is now too late to go
on the trip, anyway, hence there is no use in thinking any further about it.
If, however, you mention to him, even in the most tactful way,
that he might not want to go because he is afraid, you will get not a simple
denial, but more likely a violent barrage of protestations and accusations which
will eventually drive you into the role of having to apologize, or even - if you
are now afraid of losing his friendship - of declaring that you never meant to
say that he was afraid and, in fact, ending up with enthusiastic praise of his
What has happened? The real motivation for not wanting to go is
fear. (What he is afraid of is of no significance for the purposes of this
discussion, suffice it to say, that his fear could be objectively justified or
the reason for his fear merely imagined.) This fear is unconscious. Your friend,
however, must choose a 'reasonable' explanation for his not wanting to go - a
He may discover every day a new one (anyone who has tried to
give up smoking knows how easily rationalizations come) or stick to one main
rationalization. It does not matter, in fact, whether the rationalization as
such is valid or not; what matters is that it is not the effective or sufficient
cause far his refusal to go.
The most amazing fact, however, is the violence of his reaction
when we mention the real motive to him, the intensity of his resistance.
Should we not rather expect him to be glad, or even grateful for
our remark, since it permits him to cope with the real motive for his
reluctance? But whatever we think about what he should feel, the fact is that he
does not feel it. Obviously he cannot bear the idea of being afraid. But why?
There are several possibilities.
Perhaps he has a narcissistic image of himself of which lack of
fear is an integral part, and if this image is disturbed, his narcissistic
self-admiration and, hence, his sense of his own value and his security would be
threatened. Or perhaps his super-ego, the internalized code of right and wrong,
happens to be such that fear or cowardice are bitterly condemned; hence to admit
fear would mean to admit that he has acted against his code. Or, perhaps, he
feels the need to save for his friends the picture of a man who is never
frightened because he is so unsure of their friendship, that he is afraid they
would cease liking him if they knew he was afraid.
Any of these reasons may be effective, but why is it that they
are so effective?
One answer lies in the fact that his sense of identity is linked
with these images. If they are not 'true' - then who is he? What is true? Where
does he stand in the world?
Once these questions arise, the person feels deeply threatened.
He has lost his familiar frame of orientation and with it his security. The
anxiety aroused is… caused by the threat to one's identity. Resistance is an
attempt to protect oneself from a fright which is comparable to the fright
caused by even a small earthquake - nothing is secure, everything is shaky; I
don't know who I am or where I am. In fact this experience feels like a small
dose of insanity which for the moment, even though it may last only for seconds,
feels more than uncomfortable…
….. The term 'the unconscious' is actually a mystification (even
though one might use it for reasons of convenience, as I am guilty of doing in
these pages). There is no such thing as the unconscious; there are only
experiences of which we are aware, and others of which we are not aware, that
is, of which we are unconscious. If I hate a man because I am afraid of him, and
if I am aware of my hate but not of my fear, we may say that my hate is
conscious and that my fear is unconscious; still, my fear does not lie in that
mysterious place: 'the' unconscious. But we repress not only sexual impulses or
affects such as hate and fear; we repress also the awareness of facts provided
they contradict certain ideas and interests which we do not want to have
"In love the paradox occurs that two beings
become one and yet remain two... Immature love says: 'I love you
because I need you.' Mature love says 'I need you because I love
you.'...What matters in relation to love is the faith in one's
own love; in its ability to produce love in others... We are only capable of knowing, and caring for
the other if we are also capable of understanding, caring, and knowing