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Id, ego, and super-ego

Id, ego, and super-ego

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Id, ego and super-ego are the three parts of the psychic apparatus
Psychic apparatus
The term psychic apparatus denotes a central, theoretic construct of Freudian metapsychology, wherein:...

 defined in Sigmund Freud's
Sigmund Freud
Sigmund Freud , born Sigismund Schlomo Freud , was an Austrian neurologist who founded the discipline of psychoanalysis...

 structural model
Ego psychology
Ego psychology is a school of psychoanalysis rooted in Sigmund Freud's structural id-ego-superego model of the mind.An individual interacts with the external world as well as responds to internal forces. Many psychoanalysts use a theoretical construct called the ego to explain how that is done...

 of the psyche; they are the three theoretical constructs in terms of whose activity and interaction mental life is described. According to this model of the psyche, the id is the set of uncoordinated instinctual trends; the ego is the organized, realistic part; and the super-ego plays the critical and moralizing role.

Even though the model is structural and makes reference to an apparatus, the id, ego and super-ego are functions of the mind
Mind
The concept of mind is understood in many different ways by many different traditions, ranging from panpsychism and animism to traditional and organized religious views, as well as secular and materialist philosophies. Most agree that minds are constituted by conscious experience and intelligent...

 rather than parts of the brain and do not correspond one-to-one with actual somatic structures of the kind dealt with by neuroscience
Neuroscience
Neuroscience is the scientific study of the nervous system. Traditionally, neuroscience has been seen as a branch of biology. However, it is currently an interdisciplinary science that collaborates with other fields such as chemistry, computer science, engineering, linguistics, mathematics,...

.

The concepts themselves arose at a late stage in the development of Freud's thought: the "structural model" (which succeeded his "economic model" and "topographical model") was first discussed in his 1920 essay "Beyond the Pleasure Principle
Beyond the Pleasure Principle
"Beyond the Pleasure Principle" is an essay by Sigmund Freud. It marked a turning point and a major modification of his previous theoretical approach. Before this essay, Freud was understood to have placed the sexual instinct, Eros, or the libido, centre stage, in explaining the forces which drive...

" and was formalised and elaborated upon three years later in his "The Ego and the Id
The Ego and the Id
"The Ego and the Id" is a prominent paper by the psychoanalyst Sigmund Freud. It is an analytical study of the human psyche outlining his theories of the psychodynamics of the id, ego, and super-ego, which is of fundamental importance in the development of psychoanalytic...

". Freud's proposal was influenced by the ambiguity of the term "unconscious
Unconscious mind
The unconscious mind is a term coined by the 18th century German romantic philosopher Friedrich Schelling and later introduced into English by the poet and essayist Samuel Taylor Coleridge...

" and its many conflicting uses.

Id


The id comprises the unorganized part of the personality structure that contains the
basic drives. The id acts according to the "pleasure principle
Pleasure principle (psychology)
In Freudian psychology, the pleasure principle is the psychoanalytic concept describing people seeking pleasure and avoiding suffering in order to satisfy their biological and psychological needs...

", seeking to avoid pain or displeasure aroused by increases in instinctual tension.

The id is unconscious by definition:

In the id,
Developmentally, the id is anterior to the ego; i.e. the psychic apparatus begins, at birth, as an undifferentiated id, part of which then develops into a structured ego. Thus, the id:

.....

The mind of a newborn child is regarded as completely "id-ridden", in the sense that it is a mass of instinctive drives and impulses, and needs immediate satisfaction, a view which equates a newborn child with an id-ridden individual—often humorously—with this analogy: an alimentary tract with no sense of responsibility at either end, paraphrasing a quip made by former U.S. President Ronald Reagan during his 1965 campaign for Governor of California in which he compared government to a baby .

The id is responsible for our basic drives, "knows no judgements of value: no good and evil, no morality...Instinctual cathexes seeking discharge — that, in our view, is all there is in the id." It is regarded as "the great reservoir of libido
Libido
Libido refers to a person's sex drive or desire for sexual activity. The desire for sex is an aspect of a person's sexuality, but varies enormously from one person to another, and it also varies depending on circumstances at a particular time. A person who has extremely frequent or a suddenly...

", the instinctive drive to create — the life instincts that are crucial to pleasurable survival. Alongside the life instincts came the death instincts — the death drive which Freud articulated relatively late in his career in "the hypothesis of a death instinct, the task of which is to lead organic life back into the inanimate state." For Freud, "the death instinct would thus seem to express itself — though probably only in part — as an instinct of destruction directed against the external world and other organisms.": through aggression. Freud considered that "the id, the whole person...originally includes all the instinctual impulses...the destructive instinct as well." as Eros
Eros
Eros , in Greek mythology, was the Greek god of love. His Roman counterpart was Cupid . Some myths make him a primordial god, while in other myths, he is the son of Aphrodite....

 or the life instincts.

Ego


The ego acts according to the reality principle
Reality principle
In Freudian psychology, the reality principle is the psychoanalytic concept describing circumstantial reality compelling a man or a woman to defer instant gratification...

; i.e. it seeks to please the id’s drive in realistic ways that will benefit in the long term rather than bringing grief. At the same time, Freud concedes that as the ego "attempts to mediate between id and reality, it is often obliged to cloak the Ucs. [Unconscious] commands of the id with its own Pcs. [Preconscious] rationalizations, to conceal the id's conflicts with reality, to profess...to be taking notice of reality even when the id has remained rigid and unyielding."

The ego comprises that organised part of the personality structure that includes defensive, perceptual, intellectual-cognitive, and executive functions. Conscious awareness resides in the ego, although not all of the operations of the ego are conscious. Originally, Freud used the word ego to mean a sense of self, but later revised it to mean a set of psychic functions such as judgment, tolerance, reality testing, control, planning, defence, synthesis of information, intellectual functioning, and memory. The ego separates out what is real. It helps us to organise our thoughts and make sense of them and the world around us."The ego is that part of the id which has been modified by the direct influence of the external world ... The ego represents what may be called reason and common sense, in contrast to the id, which contains the passions ... in its relation to the id it is like a man on horseback, who has to hold in check the superior strength of the horse; with this difference, that the rider tries to do so with his own strength, while the ego uses borrowed forces." Still worse, "it serves three severe masters...the external world, the super-ego and the id." Its task is to find a balance between primitive drives and reality while satisfying the id and super-ego. Its main concern is with the individual's safety and allows some of the id's desires to be expressed, but only when consequences of these actions are marginal. "Thus the ego, driven by the id, confined by the super-ego, repulsed by reality, struggles...[in] bringing about harmony among the forces and influences working in and upon it," and readily "breaks out in anxiety — realistic anxiety regarding the external world, moral anxiety regarding the super-ego, and neurotic anxiety regarding the strength of the passions in the id." It has to do its best to suit all three, thus is constantly feeling hemmed by the danger of causing discontent on two other sides. It is said, however, that the ego seems to be more loyal to the id, preferring to gloss over the finer details of reality to minimize conflicts while pretending to have a regard for reality. But the super-ego is constantly watching every one of the ego's moves and punishes it with feelings of guilt
Guilt
Guilt is the state of being responsible for the commission of an offense. It is also a cognitive or an emotional experience that occurs when a person realizes or believes—accurately or not—that he or she has violated a moral standard, and bears significant responsibility for that...

, anxiety
Anxiety
Anxiety is a psychological and physiological state characterized by somatic, emotional, cognitive, and behavioral components. The root meaning of the word anxiety is 'to vex or trouble'; in either presence or absence of psychological stress, anxiety can create feelings of fear, worry, uneasiness,...

, and inferiority.

To overcome this the ego employs defense mechanisms. The defense mechanisms are not done so directly or consciously. They lessen the tension by covering up our impulses that are threatening.
Ego defense mechanisms are often used by the ego when id behavior conflicts with reality and either society's morals, norms, and taboos or the individual's expectations as a result of the internalisation of these morals, norms, and their taboos.

Denial
Denial
Denial is a defense mechanism postulated by Sigmund Freud, in which a person is faced with a fact that is too uncomfortable to accept and rejects it instead, insisting that it is not true despite what may be overwhelming evidence.The subject may use:* simple denial: deny the reality of the...

, displacement
Displacement (psychology)
In Freudian psychology, displacement is an unconscious defense mechanism whereby the mind redirects effects from an object felt to be dangerous or unacceptable to an object felt to be safe or acceptable...

, intellectualisation, fantasy
Fantasy (psychology)
Fantasy in a psychological sense is broadly used to cover two different senses, conscious and unconscious. In the unconscious sense, it is sometimes spelled "phantasy".-Conscious fantasy:...

, compensation
Compensation (psychology)
In psychology, compensation is a strategy whereby one covers up, consciously or unconsciously, weaknesses, frustrations, desires, feelings of inadequacy or incompetence in one life area through the gratification or excellence in another area. Compensation can cover up either real or imagined...

, projection
Psychological projection
Psychological projection or projection bias is a psychological defense mechanism where a person subconsciously denies his or her own attributes, thoughts, and emotions, which are then ascribed to the outside world, usually to other people...

, rationalisation, reaction formation
Reaction formation
In psychoanalytic theory, reaction formation is a defensive process in which anxiety-producing or unacceptable emotions and impulses are mastered by exaggeration of the directly opposing tendency.-Theory:...

, regression
Regression (psychology)
Regression, according to psychoanalyst Sigmund Freud, is a defense mechanism leading to the temporary or long-term reversion of the ego to an earlier stage of development rather than handling unacceptable impulses in a more adult way...

, repression
Psychological repression
Psychological repression, also psychic repression or simply repression, is the psychological attempt by an individual to repel one's own desires and impulses towards pleasurable instincts by excluding the desire from one's consciousness and holding or subduing it in the unconscious...

, and sublimation
Sublimation (psychology)
In psychology, sublimation is a mature type of defence mechanism where socially unacceptable impulses or idealizations are consciously transformed into socially acceptable actions or behaviour, possibly converting the initial impulse in the long term...

 were the defense mechanisms Freud identified. However, his daughter Anna Freud
Anna Freud
Anna Freud was the sixth and last child of Sigmund and Martha Freud. Born in Vienna, she followed the path of her father and contributed to the newly born field of psychoanalysis...

 clarified and identified the concepts of undoing
Undoing (psychology)
Undoing is a defence mechanism in which a person tries to 'undo' an unhealthy, destructive or otherwise threatening thought or action by engaging in contrary behaviour. For example, after thinking about being violent with someone, one would then be overly nice or accommodating to them...

, suppression
Thought suppression
Thought suppression is the process of deliberately trying to stop thinking about certain thoughts . It is often associated with obsessive–compulsive disorder, in which a sufferer will repeatedly attempt to prevent or "neutralize" intrusive distressing thoughts centered around one or more obsessions...

, dissociation
Dissociation
Dissociation is an altered state of consciousness characterized by partial or complete disruption of the normal integration of a person’s normal conscious or psychological functioning. Dissociation is most commonly experienced as a subjective perception of one's consciousness being detached from...

, idealisation
Idealization and devaluation
In psychoanalytic theory, when an individual is unable to integrate difficult feelings, specific defenses are mobilized to overcome what the individual perceives as an unbearable situation. The defense that helps in this process is called splitting. Splitting is the tendency to view events or...

, identification, introjection
Introjection
Introjection is a psychoanalytical term with a variety of meanings.Generally, it is regarded as the process where the subject replicates in itself behaviors, attributes or other fragments of the surrounding world, especially of other subjects...

, inversion, somatisation, splitting
Splitting (psychology)
Splitting may mean two things: splitting of the mind, and splitting of mental concepts . The latter is thinking purely in extremes Splitting (also called all-or-nothing thinking in cognitive distortion) may mean two things: splitting of the mind, and splitting of mental concepts (or black and...

, and substitution.

In a diagram of the Structural and Topographical Models of Mind, the ego is depicted to be half in the consciousness, while a quarter is in the preconscious
Preconscious
In Freudian psychoanalysis, the word preconscious is applied to thoughts which are unconscious at the particular moment in question, but which are not repressed and are therefore available for recall and easily capable of becoming conscious....

 and the other quarter lies in the unconscious
Unconscious mind
The unconscious mind is a term coined by the 18th century German romantic philosopher Friedrich Schelling and later introduced into English by the poet and essayist Samuel Taylor Coleridge...

.

In modern English, ego has many meanings. It could mean one’s self-esteem, an inflated sense of self-worth, or in philosophical terms, one’s self. Ego development is known as the development of multiple processes, cognitive function, defenses, and interpersonal skills or to early adolescence when ego processes are emerged.

Super-ego


Freud developed his concept of the super-ego from an earlier combination of the ego ideal and the "special psychical agency which performs the task of seeing that narcissistic satisfaction from the ego ideal is ensured...what we call our 'conscience'." For him "the installation of the super-ego can be described as a successful instance of identification with the parental agency," while as development proceeds "the super-ego also takes on the influence of those who have stepped into the place of parents — educators, teachers, people chosen as ideal models."

The super-ego aims for perfection. It comprises that organised part of the personality structure, mainly but not entirely unconscious, that includes the individual's ego ideals, spiritual goals, and the psychic agency (commonly called "conscience") that criticises and prohibits his or her drives, fantasies, feelings, and actions. "The Super-ego can be thought of as a type of conscience that punishes misbehavior with feelings of guilt. For example, for having extra-marital affairs."

The super-ego works in contradiction to the id. The super-ego strives to act in a socially appropriate manner, whereas the id just wants instant self-gratification. The super-ego controls our sense of right and wrong and guilt. It helps us fit into society by getting us to act in socially acceptable ways.
The super-ego's demands often oppose the id’s, so the ego sometimes has a hard time in reconciling the two.

Freud's theory implies that the super-ego is a symbolic internalisation of the father figure
Father Figure
"Father Figure" is the U.S. number-one song written and performed by George Michael and released on Columbia Records in 1988 as the third single from the album Faith.-History:...

 and cultural regulations. The super-ego tends to stand in opposition to the desires of the id because of their conflicting objectives, and its aggressiveness towards the ego. The super-ego acts as the conscience
Conscience
Conscience is an aptitude, faculty, intuition or judgment of the intellect that distinguishes right from wrong. Moral judgement may derive from values or norms...

, maintaining our sense of morality and proscription from taboos. The super-ego and the ego are the product of two key factors: the state of helplessness of the child and the Oedipus complex
Oedipus complex
In psychoanalytic theory, the term Oedipus complex denotes the emotions and ideas that the mind keeps in the unconscious, via dynamic repression, that concentrate upon a boy’s desire to sexually possess his mother, and kill his father...

. Its formation takes place during the dissolution of the Oedipus complex and is formed by an identification with and internalisation of the father figure after the little boy cannot successfully hold the mother as a love-object out of fear of castration
Castration anxiety
Castration anxiety is the fear of emasculation in both the literal and metaphorical sense.-Literal:Castration anxiety is the conscious or unconscious fear of losing all or part of the sex organs, or the function of such....

.
The concept of super-ego and the Oedipus complex is subject to criticism for its perceived sexism. Women, who are considered to be already castrated, do not identify with the father, and therefore, for Freud, "their super-ego is never so inexorable, so impersonal, so independent of its emotional origins as we require it to be in men...they are often more influenced in their judgements by feelings of affection or hostility." He went on however to modify his position to the effect "that the majority of men are also far behind the masculine ideal and that all human individuals, as a result of their bisexual disposition and of cross-inheritance, combine in themselves both masculine and feminine characteristics."

In Sigmund Freud's work Civilization and Its Discontents (1930) he also discusses the concept of a "cultural super-ego". Freud suggested that the demands of the super-ego "coincide with the precepts of the prevailing cultural super-ego. At this point the two processes, that of the cultural development of the group and that of the cultural development of the individual, are, as it were, always interlocked." Ethics
Ethics
Ethics, also known as moral philosophy, is a branch of philosophy that addresses questions about morality—that is, concepts such as good and evil, right and wrong, virtue and vice, justice and crime, etc.Major branches of ethics include:...

 are a central element in the demands of the cultural super-ego, but Freud (as analytic moralist) protested against what he called "the unpsychological proceedings of the cultural super-ego...the ethical demands of the cultural super-ego. It does not trouble itself enough about the facts of the mental constitution of human beings."

Advantages of the structural model


Freud's earlier, topographical model of the mind had divided the mind into the three elements of conscious, preconscious, and unconscious. At its heart was "the dialectic of unconscious traumatic memory versus consciousness...which soon became a conflict between System Ucs versus System Cs." With what Freud called the "disagreeable discovery that on the one hand (super-)ego and conscious and on the other hand repressed and unconscious are far from coinciding," Freud took the step in the structural model to "no longer use the term 'unconscious' in the systematic sense," and to rename "the mental region that is foreign to the ego...[and] in future call it the 'id'." The partition of the psyche defined in the structural model is thus one that cuts across the topographical model's partition of "conscious vs. unconscious".

"The new terminology which he introduced has a highly clarifying effect and so made further clinical advances possible." Its value lies in the increased degree of precision and diversification made possible: Although the id is unconscious by definition, the ego and the super-ego are both partly conscious and partly unconscious. What is more, with this new model Freud achieved a more systematic classification of mental disorder than had been available previously:
It is important to realise however "the three newly presented entities, the id, the ego and the superego, all had lengthy past histories (two of them under other names)" — the id as the systematic unconscious, the super-ego as conscience/ego ideal. Equally, Freud never abandoned the topographical division of conscious, preconscious, and unconscious, though as he noted ruefully "the three qualities of consciousness and the three provinces of the mental apparatus do not fall together into three peaceful couples...we had no right to expect any such smooth arrangement."

Translation


The terms "id", "ego", and "super-ego" are not Freud's own. They are latinisations by his translator James Strachey
James Strachey
James Beaumont Strachey was a British psychoanalyst, and, with his wife Alix, a translator of Sigmund Freud into English...

. Freud himself wrote of "das Es," "das Ich," and "das Über-Ich"—respectively, "the It", "the I", and the "Over-I" (or "I above"); thus to the German reader, Freud's original terms are more or less self-explanatory. Freud borrowed the term "das Es" from Georg Groddeck
Georg Groddeck
Georg Groddeck was a physician and writer regarded as a pioneer of psychosomatic medicine.-Method:...

, a German physician to whose unconventional ideas Freud was much attracted (Groddeck's translators render the term in English as "the It").
The word ego is taken directly from Latin
Latin
Latin is an Italic language originally spoken in Latium and Ancient Rome. It, along with most European languages, is a descendant of the ancient Proto-Indo-European language. Although it is considered a dead language, a number of scholars and members of the Christian clergy speak it fluently, and...

, where it is the nominative of the first person singular personal pronoun
Personal pronoun
Personal pronouns are pronouns used as substitutes for proper or common nouns. All known languages contain personal pronouns.- English personal pronouns :English in common use today has seven personal pronouns:*first-person singular...

 and is translated as "I myself" to express emphasis.

Figures like Bruno Bettelheim
Bruno Bettelheim
Bruno Bettelheim was an Austrian-born American child psychologist and writer. He gained an international reputation for his work on Freud, psychoanalysis, and emotionally disturbed children.-Background:...

 have criticized the way "the English translations impeded students' efforts to gain a true understanding of Freud." by substituting the formalised language of the elaborated code
Basil Bernstein
Basil Bernstein was a British sociologist and linguist, known for his work in the sociology of education.-Biography:...

 for the homely immediacy of Freud's own language.

In popular culture

  • In the classic 1956 movie Forbidden Planet
    Forbidden Planet
    Forbidden Planet is a 1956 science fiction film directed by Fred M. Wilcox, with a screenplay by Cyril Hume. It stars Leslie Nielsen, Walter Pidgeon, and Anne Francis. The characters and its setting have been compared to those in William Shakespeare's The Tempest, and its plot contains certain...

    , the destructive forces at large on the planet Altair IV are finally revealed to be "monsters from the id" — destructive psychological urges unleashed upon the outside world through the operation of the Krells' "mind-materialisation machine". The example is of significance because of the unusual degree of insight it demonstrates: the creature eventually revealed follows classical psychoanalytic theory in being literally a dream-like primary process "condensation" of different animal parts. The plaster cast of its footprint, for example, reveals a feline pad combined with an avian claw. As a crew member observes, "Anywhere in the galaxy this is a nightmare".


See also


People:

  • Abraham, Karl
    Karl Abraham
    -Further reading:* Freud, S. . Mourning and Melancholia. Standard Edition, 14, 305-307.* May-Tolzmann, U. . The Discovery of the Bad Mother: Abraham’s contribution to the theory of Depression...

  • Adler, Alfred
    Alfred Adler
    Alfred Adler was an Austrian medical doctor, psychotherapist, and founder of the school of individual psychology. In collaboration with Sigmund Freud and a small group of Freud's colleagues, Adler was among the co-founders of the psychoanalytic movement as a core member of the Vienna...

  • Cerda, Victor
  • Ferenczi, Sándor
    Sándor Ferenczi
    Sándor Ferenczi was a Hungarian psychoanalyst, a key theorist of the psychoanalytic school and a close associate of Sigmund Freud.-Biography:...

  • Freud, Sigmund
    Sigmund Freud
    Sigmund Freud , born Sigismund Schlomo Freud , was an Austrian neurologist who founded the discipline of psychoanalysis...


  • Jones, Ernest
    Ernest Jones
    Alfred Ernest Jones was a British neurologist and psychoanalyst, and Sigmund Freud’s official biographer. Jones was the first English-speaking practitioner of psychoanalysis and became its leading exponent in the English-speaking world where, as President of both the British Psycho-Analytical...

  • Jung, Carl
    Carl Jung
    Carl Gustav Jung was a Swiss psychiatrist and the founder of Analytical Psychology. Jung is considered the first modern psychiatrist to view the human psyche as "by nature religious" and make it the focus of exploration. Jung is one of the best known researchers in the field of dream analysis and...

  • Klein, Melanie
    Melanie Klein
    Melanie Reizes Klein was an Austrian-born British psychoanalyst who devised novel therapeutic techniques for children that had an impact on child psychology and contemporary psychoanalysis...

  • Lacan, Jacques
    Jacques Lacan
    Jacques Marie Émile Lacan was a French psychoanalyst and psychiatrist who made prominent contributions to psychoanalysis and philosophy, and has been called "the most controversial psycho-analyst since Freud". Giving yearly seminars in Paris from 1953 to 1981, Lacan influenced France's...

  • Laplanche, Jean
    Jean Laplanche
    Jean Laplanche is a French author, theorist and psychoanalyst. Laplanche is best known for his work on psychosexual development and Sigmund Freud's seduction theory, and has written more than a dozen books on psychoanalytic theory...


  • Loevinger, Jane
    Jane Loevinger
    Jane Loevinger Weissman was a developmental psychologist who developed a theory of personality which emphasized the gradual internalization of social rules and the maturing conscience for the origin of personal decisions...

  • Rank, Otto
    Otto Rank
    Otto Rank was an Austrian psychoanalyst, writer, teacher and therapist. Born in Vienna as Otto Rosenfeld, he was one of Sigmund Freud's closest colleagues for 20 years, a prolific writer on psychoanalytic themes, an editor of the two most important analytic journals, managing director of Freud's...

  • Reich, Wilhelm
    Wilhelm Reich
    Wilhelm Reich was an Austrian-American psychiatrist and psychoanalyst, known as one of the most radical figures in the history of psychiatry...

  • Žižek, Slavoj
    Slavoj Žižek
    Slavoj Žižek is a Slovenian philosopher, critical theorist working in the traditions of Hegelianism, Marxism and Lacanian psychoanalysis. He has made contributions to political theory, film theory, and theoretical psychoanalysis....


Related topics:

  • Ahaṃkāra
    Ahamkara
    Ahaṃkāra , a Sanskrit term that originated in Vedic philosophy over 3,000 years ago, and was later incorporated into Hindu philosophy, particularly Saṃkhyā philosophy....

  • Alter ego
    Alter ego
    An alter ego is a second self, which is believe to be distinct from a person's normal or original personality. The term was coined in the early nineteenth century when dissociative identity disorder was first described by psychologists...

  • Collective unconscious
    Collective unconscious
    Collective unconscious is a term of analytical psychology, coined by Carl Jung. It is proposed to be a part of the unconscious mind, expressed in humanity and all life forms with nervous systems, and describes how the structure of the psyche autonomously organizes experience...

  • Consciousness
    Consciousness
    Consciousness is a term that refers to the relationship between the mind and the world with which it interacts. It has been defined as: subjectivity, awareness, the ability to experience or to feel, wakefulness, having a sense of selfhood, and the executive control system of the mind...

  • Defence mechanism
    Defence mechanism
    In Freudian psychoanalytic theory, defence mechanisms are unconscious psychological strategies brought into play by various entities to cope with reality and to maintain self-image. Healthy persons normally use different defences throughout life...

  • The Ego and the Id
    The Ego and the Id
    "The Ego and the Id" is a prominent paper by the psychoanalyst Sigmund Freud. It is an analytical study of the human psyche outlining his theories of the psychodynamics of the id, ego, and super-ego, which is of fundamental importance in the development of psychoanalytic...

  • Ego ideal
    Ego ideal
    The ego ideal is the inner image of oneself as one wants to become. Alternatively, 'The Freudian notion of a perfect or ideal self housed in the superego', consisting of 'the individual's conscious and unconscious images of what he would like to be, patterned after certain people whom...he regards...

  • Egolessness
    Egolessness
    In psychology, egolessness is an emotional state where one feels no ego ; of having no distinct being apart from the world around oneself...

  • Eight-circuit model of consciousness
  • Existentialism
    Existentialism
    Existentialism is a term applied to a school of 19th- and 20th-century philosophers who, despite profound doctrinal differences, shared the belief that philosophical thinking begins with the human subject—not merely the thinking subject, but the acting, feeling, living human individual...


  • Ho'oponopono
    Ho'oponopono
    Hooponopono is an ancient Hawaiian practice of reconciliation and forgiveness. Similar forgiveness practices were performed on islands throughout the South Pacific, including Samoa, Tahiti and New Zealand. Traditionally hooponopono is practiced by healing priests or kahuna lapaau among family...

  • Individual
    Individual
    An individual is a person or any specific object or thing in a collection. Individuality is the state or quality of being an individual; a person separate from other persons and possessing his or her own needs, goals, and desires. Being self expressive...

  • Instinct
    Instinct
    Instinct or innate behavior is the inherent inclination of a living organism toward a particular behavior.The simplest example of an instinctive behavior is a fixed action pattern, in which a very short to medium length sequence of actions, without variation, are carried out in response to a...

  • Interpassivity
    Interpassivity
    Interpassivity is the act of projecting one's own self onto remote objects, that is, onto people or things, in so doing delegating the sensation to that person or object...

  • Mind
    Mind
    The concept of mind is understood in many different ways by many different traditions, ranging from panpsychism and animism to traditional and organized religious views, as well as secular and materialist philosophies. Most agree that minds are constituted by conscious experience and intelligent...

  • Nafs
    Nafs
    Nafs is an Arabic word which occurs in the Qur'an and means self, psyche, ego or soul. In its unrefined state, "the ego is the lowest dimension of man's inward existence, his animal and satanic nature." Nafs is an important concept in the Islamic tradition, especially within Sufism and the...

  • Personhood

  • Psychoanalysis
    Psychoanalysis
    Psychoanalysis is a psychological theory developed in the late 19th and early 20th centuries by Austrian neurologist Sigmund Freud. Psychoanalysis has expanded, been criticized and developed in different directions, mostly by some of Freud's former students, such as Alfred Adler and Carl Gustav...

  • Psychodynamics
    Psychodynamics
    Psychodynamics is the theory and systematic study of the psychological forces that underlie human behavior, especially the dynamic relations between conscious motivation and unconscious motivation...

  • Reductionism
    Reductionism
    Reductionism can mean either an approach to understanding the nature of complex things by reducing them to the interactions of their parts, or to simpler or more fundamental things or a philosophical position that a complex system is nothing but the sum of its parts, and that an account of it can...

  • Self (psychology)
    Self (psychology)
    The psychology of self is the study of either the cognitive and affective representation of one's identity or the subject of experience. The earliest formulation of the self in modern psychology derived from the distinction between the self as I, the subjective knower, and the self as Me, the...

  • Shoulder angel
    Shoulder angel
    A shoulder angel is a plot device used for either dramatic or humorous effect in animation and comic strips . The angel represents conscience and is often accompanied by a shoulder devil representing temptation. They are handy for easily showing inner conflict of a character...

  • Transactional analysis
    Transactional analysis
    Transactional analysis, commonly known as TA to its adherents, is an integrative approach to the theory of psychology and psychotherapy. It is described as integrative because it has elements of psychoanalytic, humanist and cognitive approaches...

  • Unconscious mind
    Unconscious mind
    The unconscious mind is a term coined by the 18th century German romantic philosopher Friedrich Schelling and later introduced into English by the poet and essayist Samuel Taylor Coleridge...


Further reading

  • Freud, Sigmund (1910), "The Origin and Development of Psychoanalysis", American Journal of Psychology 21(2), 196–218.
  • Freud, Sigmund (1920), Beyond the Pleasure Principle.
  • Freud, Sigmund (1923), Das Ich und das Es, Internationaler Psycho-analytischer Verlag, Leipzig, Vienna, and Zurich. English translation, The Ego and the Id, Joan Riviere
    Joan Riviere
    Joan Hodgson Riviere was a British psychoanalyst, who was both Freud's earliest translator and an influential writer on her own account.-Life and career:...

     (trans.), Hogarth Press and Institute of Psycho-analysis, London, UK, 1927. Revised for The Standard Edition of the Complete Psychological Works of Sigmund Freud, James Strachey
    James Strachey
    James Beaumont Strachey was a British psychoanalyst, and, with his wife Alix, a translator of Sigmund Freud into English...

     (ed.), W.W. Norton and Company, New York, NY, 1961.
  • Freud, Sigmund (1923), "Neurosis and Psychosis". The Standard Edition of the Complete Psychological Works of Sigmund Freud, Volume XIX (1923–1925): The Ego and the Id and Other Works, 147-154
  • Gay, Peter (ed., 1989), The Freud Reader. W.W. Norton.
  • Rangjung Dorje
    Rangjung Dorje
    Rangjung Dorje was the third Karmapa, an important figure in the history of Tibetan Buddhism. He reportedly produced a spontaneous black crown at the age of three and declared himself to be the mindstream reimbodiment of Karma Pakshi...

     (root text): Venerable Khenchen Thrangu Rinpoche (commentary), Peter Roberts (translator) (2001)Transcending Ego: Distinguishing Consciousness from Wisdom, (Wylie: rnam shes ye shes ‘byed pa)
  • Kurt R. Eissler: The effect of the structure of the ego on psychoanalytic technique (1953) / republished by Psychomedia

External links