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A personal recount on fulfilling a dream of success

In adults, however, the situation is more complicated—since in Freud's submission, the dreams of adults have been subjected to distortion, with the dream's so-called "manifest content" being a heavily disguised derivative of the "latent" dream-thoughts present in the unconscious.

As a result of this distortion and disguise, the dream's real significance is concealed: In Freud's original formulation the latent dream-thought was described as having been subject to an intra-psychic force referred to as "the censor"; in the more refined terminology of his later years, however, discussion was in terms of the super-ego and "the work of the ego 's forces of defense.

Freud's view was that dreams are compromises which ensure that sleep is not interrupted: The dream portrays Freud's colleague giving Irma an unsterile injection. Freud provides us with pages of associations to the elements in his dream, using it to demonstrate his technique of decoding the latent dream thought from the manifest content of the dream. Freud described the actual technique of psychoanalytic dream-analysis in the following terms, suggesting that the true meaning of a dream must be "weeded out" from dream: From this material you arrive at the latent dream-thoughts, just as you arrived at the patient's hidden complexes from his associations to his symptoms and memories.

The true meaning of the dream, which has now replaced the manifest content, is always clearly intelligible. Visualization — a thought is translated to visual images. Symbolism — a symbol replaces an action, person, or idea.

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To these might be added "secondary elaboration"—the outcome of the dreamer's natural tendency to make some sort of "sense" or "story" out of the various elements of the manifest content as recollected. Freud, in fact, was wont to stress that it was not merely futile but actually misleading to attempt to "explain" one part of the manifest content with reference to another part as if the manifest dream somehow constituted some unified or coherent conception.

Freud considered that the experience of anxiety dreams and nightmares was the result of failures in the dream-work: Traumatic dreams where the dream merely repeats the traumatic experience were eventually admitted as exceptions to the theory. Freud famously described psychoanalytic dream-interpretation as "the royal road to a knowledge of the unconscious activities of the mind"; he was, however, capable of expressing regret and dissatisfaction at the way his ideas on the subject were misrepresented or simply not understood: Jung[ edit ] And although not dismissing Freud's model of dream interpretation wholesale, Carl Jung believed Freud's notion of dreams as representations of unfulfilled wishes to be limited.

Jung argued that Freud's procedure of collecting associations to a dream would bring insights into the dreamer's mental complex—a person's associations to anything will reveal the mental complexes, as Jung had shown experimentally [28] —but not necessarily closer to the meaning of the dream. Jung believed the psyche to be a self-regulating organism in which conscious attitudes were likely to be compensated for unconsciously within the dream by their opposites.

In the subjective approach, every person in the dream represents an aspect of the dreamer. Jung argued that the subjective approach is much more difficult for the dreamer to accept, but that in most good dream-work, the dreamer will come to recognize that the dream characters can represent an unacknowledged aspect of the dreamer.

Dream interpretation

Thus, if the dreamer is being chased by a crazed killer, the dreamer may come eventually to recognize his own homicidal impulses.

Gestalt therapists extended the subjective approach, claiming that even the inanimate objects in a dream can represent aspects of the dreamer. Jung believed that archetypes such as the animusthe animathe shadow and others manifested themselves in dreams, as dream symbols or figures.

Such figures could take the form of an old man, a young maiden or a giant spider as the case may be. Each represents an unconscious attitude that is largely hidden to the conscious mind.

Although an integral part of the dreamer's psyche, these manifestations were largely autonomous and were perceived by the dreamer to be external personages. Acquaintance with the archetypes as manifested by these symbols serve to increase one's awareness of unconscious attitudes, integrating seemingly disparate parts of the psyche and contributing to the process of holistic self-understanding he considered paramount.

Jung cautioned against blindly ascribing meaning to dream symbols without a clear understanding of the client's personal situation. He described two approaches to dream symbols: Thus, a sword may symbolize a penis, as may a snake. In the final approach, the dream interpreter asks, "Why this symbol and not another? A snake representing a penis is alive, dangerous, perhaps poisonous and slimy. The final approach will tell additional things about the dreamer's attitudes.

Technically, Jung recommended stripping the dream of its details and presenting the gist of the dream to the dreamer. This was an adaptation of a procedure described by Wilhelm Stekelwho recommended thinking of the dream as a newspaper article and writing a headline for it. His approach was to recognize the dynamism and fluidity that existed between symbols and their ascribed meaning.

Symbols must be explored for their personal significance to the patient, instead of having the dream conform to some predetermined idea. This prevents dream analysis from devolving into a theoretical and dogmatic exercise that is far removed from the patient's own psychological state. In the service of this idea, he stressed the importance of "sticking to the image"—exploring in depth a client's association with a particular image.

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This may be contrasted with Freud's free associating which he believed was a deviation from the salience of the image. He describes for example the image "deal table. Jung would ask a patient to imagine the image as vividly as possible and to explain it to him as if he had no idea as to what a "deal table" was. Jung stressed the importance of context in dream analysis. Jung stressed that the dream was not merely a devious puzzle invented by the unconscious to be deciphered, so that the true causal factors behind it may be elicited.

Dreams were not to serve as lie detectors, with which to reveal the insincerity behind conscious thought processes. Dreams, like the unconscious, had their own language. As representations of the unconscious, dream images have their own primacy and mechanics. Jung believed that dreams may contain ineluctable truths, philosophical pronouncements, a personal recount on fulfilling a dream of success, wild fantasies, memories, plans, irrational experiences and even telepathic visions.

Jung would argue that just as we do not doubt the importance of our conscious experience, then we ought not to second guess the value of our unconscious lives. Hall[ edit ] In 1953, Calvin S. Hall developed a theory of dreams in which dreaming is considered to be a cognitive process. For example, if one dreams of being attacked by friends, this may be a manifestation of fear of friendship; a more complicated example, which requires a cultural metaphor, is that a cat within a dream symbolizes a need to use one's intuition.

For English speakers, it may suggest that the dreamer must recognize that there is "more than one way to skin a cat," or in other words, more than one way to do something. Faraday, Clift, et al. Faraday focused on the application of dreams to situations occurring in one's life. For instance, some dreams are warnings of something about to happen—e.

Outside of such context, it could relate to failing some other kind of test. Or it could even have a " punny " nature, e. Faraday noted that "one finding has emerged pretty firmly from modern research, namely that the majority of dreams seem in some way to reflect things that have preoccupied our minds during the previous day or two.

Their books identified patterns in dreaming, and ways of analyzing dreams to explore life changes, with particular emphasis on moving toward healing and wholeness.