A Broad Perspective on Mental Healing

Home | About | Alternative Health | Contact

Rivers,194 too, considers that dreams are usually attempts to solve unsolved conflicts, and points out that the emotion experienced on waking is important. If there is little emotion the meaning of the dream is obscure to consciousness ; if the emotion is unpleasant the solution worked out in the dream is not satisfactory ; if it is pleasant the solution is approved.
Treatment by Individual Psychology aims at satisfying the more or less universal desire that neurotics and non-neurotics have of obtaining satisfaction from life. The patient's life is searched for evidences of the struggle between superiority and inferiority that run from childhood onward. The Individual Psychologist tells the patient of his problem, seeking to aid him in his striving ' to get there', to reach the goal of his life-plan. The patient's neurosis is a measure of the inner difficulty he has in carrying out his life-plan. By advising the neurotic to m^ke careful evasions of ' dangerous looking decisions ' and advising him to travel ' along lines of direction safe for the neurotic', the patient is strengthened. Make his position clear, counselled Adler, and he will no longer look for ' evasions ' when meeting disagreeable reality. There will be no need then of deceiving his ego and satisfying his fantasy by neurotic symptoms.
The Individual Psychologist traces the various efforts in childhood, in school life, in early social contacts, which have been made to assert the will to power. He finds that in normal life, or what he regards as normal life, the will to power expresses itself most adequately, and to the satisfaction of the subject, through society. Man, Adler felt with Aristotle, is by nature a social and political animal. He belongs essentially to group life. Without society individuality has no human meaning. All efforts to live apart from the group are divergences from the normal, and escapes from a society