Sigmund Freud Poster

Quotes (56)

  • If a man has been his mother's undisputed darling, he retains throughout life the triumphant feeling, the confidence in success, which not seldom brings actual success along with it.
  • Dogs love their friends and bite their enemies, quite unlike people, who are incapable of pure love and always have to mix love and hate in their object-relations.
  • The first human who hurled an insult instead of a stone was the founder of civilization.
  • Only the real, rare, true scientific minds can endure doubt, which is attached to all our knowledge. [in a letter to Princess Marie Bonaparte]
  • The child is psychologically father of the adult.
  • The great question . . . which I have not been able to answer, despite my 30 years of research into the feminine soul, is, "What does a woman want??".
  • Sometimes a cigar is just a cigar.
  • Wherever I go, I find a poet has been there before me.
  • How bold one gets when one is sure of being loved.
  • If the sole reason why you must not kill your neighbor is because God has forbidden it and will severely punish you for it in this or the next life-- then, when you learn that there is no God and that you need not fear His punishment, you will certainly kill your neighbor without hesitation, and you can only be prevented from doing so by mundane force. Thus either these dangerous masses must be held down most severely and kept most carefully away from any chance of intellectual awakening, or else the relationship between civilization and religion must undergo a fundamental revision.
  • Before the problem of the artist, analysis must, alas, lay down its arms.
  • I have found little that is "good" about human beings on the whole. In my experience most of them are trash, no matter whether they publicly subscribe to this or that ethical doctrine or to none at all. That is something that you cannot say aloud, or perhaps even think.
  • Our recognition that the ruling tendency of psychic life . . . is the struggle for reduction, keeping at a constant level, or removal of the inner stimulus tension - a struggle which comes to expression in the pleasure-principle--is indeed one of our strongest motives for believing in the existence of death-instincts.
  • The paranoid is always not entirely mistaken.
  • Even paranoids have enemies.
  • Dreams are the royal road to the subconscious.
  • [on reading [nm2123939\'s "Psychological Types"] There [can] be no [variance in] "objective truth" in psychology because of personal differences in the observer's constitution.
  • [confronted with Johann Wolfgang von Goethe's "Complete Works" in Weimar] To think he wrote all of that in order not to show himself.
  • Religion is an attempt to get control over the sensory world, in which we are placed, by means of the wish-world, which we have developed inside us as a result of biological and psychological necessities [ . . . ] If one attempts to assign to religion its place in man's evolution, it seems not so much to be a lasting acquisition as a parallel to the neurosis which the civilized individual must pass through on his way from childhood to maturity.
  • My language is German. My culture, my attainments are German. I considered myself German intellectually, until I noticed the growth of anti-Semitic prejudice in Germany and German Austria. Since that time, I prefer to call myself a Jew.
  • Religion is an illusion and it derives its strength from the fact that it falls in with our instinctual desires.
  • A religion, even if it calls itself a religion of love, must be hard and unloving to those who do not belong to it.
  • [on religion] The whole thing is so patently infantile, so foreign to reality, that to anyone with a friendly attitude to humanity it is painful to think that the great majority of mortals will never be able to rise above this view of life. It is still more humiliating to discover how a large number of people living today, who cannot but see that this religion is not tenable, nevertheless try to defend it piece by piece in a series of pitiful rearguard actions.
  • Our knowledge of the historical worth of certain religious doctrines increases our respect for them, but does not invalidate our proposal that they should cease to be put forward as the reasons for the precepts of civilization. On the contrary! Those historical residues have helped us to view religious teachings, as it were, as neurotic relics, and we may now argue that the time has probably come, as it does in an analytic treatment, for replacing the effects of repression by the results of the rational operation of the intellect
  • The different religions have never overlooked the part played by the sense of guilt in civilization. What is more, they come forward with a claim . . . to save mankind from this sense of guilt, which they call sin.
  • Psychoanalysis is the impossible profession.
  • Fear of weapons is a sign of retarded sexual and emotional maturity.
  • You wanted to kill your father so that you could become your father. Now you are your father but you are a dead father.
  • [Eros & Thanatos] Every neurotic is either Hamlet or Oedipus.
  • There are certain people who behave in quite a peculiar fashion during the work of analysis. When one speaks hopefully to them or expresses satisfaction with the progress of the treatment, they show signs of discontent and their condition invariably becomes worse. One begins by regarding this as defiance and as an attempt to prove their superiority to the physician, but later one comes to take a deeper and juster view. One becomes convinced, not only that such people cannot endure any praise or appreciation, but that they react inversely to the progress of the treatment. Every partial solution that ought to result, and in other people does result, in an improvement or a temporary suspension of symptoms produces in them an exacerbation of their illness; they get worse during the treatment instead of getting better. They exhibit what is known as a "negative therapeutic reaction". There is no doubt that there is something in these people that sets itself against recovery, and its approach is dreaded as though it were a danger. We are accustomed to say that the need for illness has got the upper hand in them over the desire for recovery. If we analyze this resistance in the usual way -then, even after allowance has been made for an attitude of defiance towards the physician and for fixation to the various forms of gain from illness, the greater part of it is still left over, and this reveals itself as the most powerful of all obstacles to recovery, more powerful than the familiar ones of narcissistic inaccessibility, a negative attitude towards the physician and clinging to the gain from illness. In the end we come to see that we are dealing with what may be called a "moral" factor, a sense of guilt, which is finding its satisfaction in the illness and refuses to give up the punishment of suffering. We shall be right in regarding this disheartening explanation as final. But as far as the patient is concerned this sense of guilt is dumb; it does not tell him he is guilty, he does not feel guilty, he feels ill. This sense of guilt expresses itself only as a resistance to recovery which it is extremely difficult to overcome. It is also particularly difficult to convince the patient that this motive lies behind his continuing to be ill; he holds fast to the more obvious explanation that treatment by analysis is not the right remedy for his case.
  • Where does a thought go when it's forgotten?
  • In so doing, the idea forces itself upon him that religion is comparable to a childhood neurosis, and he is optimistic enough to suppose that mankind will surmount this neurotic phase, just as so many children grow out of their similar neurosis
  • There are no mistakes
  • Most people do not really want freedom, because freedom involves responsibility, and most people are frightened of responsibility
  • Neurosis is the inability to tolerate ambiguity.
  • No, our science is no illusion. But an illusion it would be to suppose that what science cannot give us we can get elsewhere
  • Neurotics complain of their illness, but they make the most of it, and when it comes to taking it away from them they will defend it like a lioness her young.
  • He that has eyes to see and ears to hear may convince himself that no mortal can keep a secret. If his lips are silent, he chatters with his fingertips; betrayal oozes out of him at every pore.
  • We are never so defenseless against suffering as when we love.
  • Unexpressed emotions will never die. They are buried alive and will come forth later in uglier ways
  • Religious doctrines . . . are all illusions, they do not admit of proof, and no one can be compelled to consider them as true or to believe in them
  • It is impossible to escape the impression that people commonly use false standards of measurement--that they seek power, success and wealth for themselves and admire them in others, and that they underestimate what is of true value in life.
  • The intention that man should be happy is not in the plan of Creation.
  • My love is something valuable to me which I ought not to throw away without reflection.
  • Not understanding reproduction is surely the mark of the lowliest savage.
  • I cannot think of any need in childhood as strong as the need for a father's protection.
  • Some time ago I analyzed a colleague who had developed a particularly strong dislike of the idea of anyone being allowed to engage in a medical activity who was not himself a medical man. I was in a position to say to him, "We have now been working for more than three months. At what point in our analysis have I had occasion to make use of my medical knowledge?" He admitted that I had had no such occasion.
  • The first consideration is that in his medical school a doctor receives a training which is more or less the opposite of what he would need as a preparation for psychoanalysis. Neurotics, indeed, are an undesired complication, an embarrassment as much to therapeutics as to jurisprudence and to military service. But they exist and are a particular concern of medicine. Medical education, however, does nothing, literally nothing, towards their understanding and treatment. It would be tolerable if medical education merely failed to give doctors any orientation in the field of the neuroses. But it does more: it given them a false and detrimental attitude. -analytic instruction would include branches of knowledge which are remote from medicine and which the doctor does not come across in his practice: the history of civilization, mythology, the psychology of religion and the science of literature. Unless he is well at home in these subjects, an analyst can make nothing of a large amount of his material. By way of compensation, the great mass of what is taught in medical schools is of no use to him for his purposes. A knowledge of the anatomy of the tarsal bones, of the constitution of the carbohydrates, of the course of the cranial nerves, a grasp of all that medicine has brought to light on bacillary exciting causes of disease and the means of combating them, on serum reactions and on neoplasms-all of this knowledge, which is undoubtedly of the highest value in itself, is nevertheless of no consequence to him; it does not concern him; it neither helps him directly to understand a neurosis and to cure it nor does it contribute to a sharpening of those intellectual capacities on which his occupation makes the greatest demands. It is unjust and inexpedient to try to compel a person who wants to set someone else free from the torment of a phobia or an obsession to take the roundabout road of the medical curriculum. Nor will such an endeavor have any success
  • [Money is] laughing-gas to me.
  • [in a letter] You probably imagine that I have secrets quite other than those I have reserved for myself, or you believe that [my secret] is connected with a special sorrow, whereas I feel capable of handling everything and am pleased with the resultant greater independence that comes from having overcome my homosexuality.
  • [on his daughter Anna Freud] [She is a] jealous, depressed, masochistic, anorectic, latent-homosexual teenager.
  • [in a letter] Unfortunately, my own father was one of these perverts and is responsible for the hysteria of my brother (all of whose symptoms are identifications) and those of several younger sisters.
  • The sex life of adult females is a dark continent for psychology.
  • [the only known recording of Freud, by the BBC, December 7, 1938, at his home at Hampstead, North London] I started my professional activity as a neurologist trying to bring relief to my neurotic patients. Under the influence of an older friend and by my own efforts, I discovered some important new facts about the unconscious in psychic life, the role of instinctual urges, and so on. Out of these findings grew a new science, psychoanalysis, a part of psychology, and a new method of treatment of the neuroses. I had to pay heavily for this bit of good luck. People did not believe in my facts and thought my theories unsavory. Resistance was strong and unrelenting. In the end I succeeded in acquiring pupils and building up an International Psychoanalytic Association. But the struggle is not yet over. Sigmund Freud.
  • I have just carried out one resolution, which one group of people, as yet unborn and fated to misfortune, will feel acutely. Since you can't guess whom I mean I will tell you: they are my biographers. I have destroyed all my diaries of the past fourteen years, with letters, scientific notes and the manuscripts of my publications.... Let the biographers chafe; we won't make it too easy for them.
  • The Irish are a race for whom Psychoanalysis is of no use whatsoever.