Sigmund Freud, born Sigismund Schlomo Freud

Sigmund
Freud, born Sigismund Schlomo Freud
1856
1939

Austrian Psychologist, Neurologist, Originator of Psychoanalysis

Author Quotes

The poets and philosophers before me discovered the unconscious; what I discovered was the scientific method by which the unconscious can be studied.

The virtuous man contents himself with dreaming that which the wicked man does in actual life.

War strips off the later deposits of civilization and allows the primitive man in us to reappear. It forces us again to be heroes who cannot believe in their own death, it stamps all strangers as enemies whose death we ought to cause or wish; it counsels us to rise above the death of those whom we love. But war cannot be abolished; as long as the conditions of existence among races are so varied and the repulsions between them are so vehement, there will have to be wars. The question then arises whether we shall be the ones to yield and adapt ourselves to it. Shall we not admit that in our civilized attitude towards death we have again lived psychologically beyond our means? Shall we not turn around and avow the truth? Were it not better to give death the place to which it is entitled both in reality and in our thoughts and to reveal a little more of our unconscious attitude towards death which up to now we have so carefully suppressed? This may not appear a very high achievement and in some respects rather a step backwards, a kind of regression, but at least it has the advantage of taking the truth into account a little more and of making life more bearable again. To bear life remains, after all, the first duty of the living. The illusion becomes worthless if it disturbs us in this.

What progress we are making. In the Middle Ages they would have burned me. Now they are content with burning my books.

The conceptions I have summarized here I first put forward only tentatively, but in the course of time they have won such a hold over me that I can no longer think in any other way.

The great majority of people have a strong need for authority which they can admire, to which they can submit, and which dominates and sometimes even ill-treats them.

The poor ego has a still harder time of it; it has to serve three harsh masters, and it has to do its best to reconcile the claims and demands of all three.... The three tyrants are the external world, the superego, and the id.

The voice of the intellect is a soft one, but it does not rest until it has gained a hearing. Ultimately, after endlessly repeated rebuffs, it succeeds. This is one of the few points in which it may be optimistic about the future of mankind, but in itself it signifies not a little.

We are certainly getting ahead if I am Moses, then you are Joshua and will take possession of the promised land of psychiatry, which I shall only be able to glimpse from afar.

When a man has once brought himself to accept uncritically all the absurdities that religious doctrines put before him and even to overlook the contradictions between them, we need not be greatly suprised at the weakness of his intellect.

The conscious mind may be compared to a fountain playing in the sun and falling back into the great subterranean pool of subconscious from which it rises.

The impression forces itself upon one that men measure by false standards, that everyone seeks power, success, riches for himself, and admires others who attain them, while undervaluing the truly precious thing in life.

The price we pay for our advance in civilization is a loss of happiness through the heightening of the sense of guilt.

There is a psychological technique which makes it possible to interpret dreams, and ... if that procedure is employed, every dream reveals itself as a psychical structure which has a meaning and which can be inserted at an assignable point in the mental activities of waking life.

We are never so defensless against suffering as when we love.

When a man is freed of religion, he has a better chance to live a normal and wholesome life.

The deepest character of man consists of impulses of an elemental kind which are similar in all human beings, the aim of which is the gratification of certain primitive needs. These impulses are in themselves neither good or evil.

The intention that man should be happy is not in the plan of Creation.

The psychic development of the individual is a short repetition of the course of development of the race.

These patients have turned away from outer reality; it is for this reason that they are more aware than we of inner reality and can reveal to us things which without them would remain impenetrable.

We are our desires.

When inspiration does not come to me, I go halfway to meet it.

The doctor should be opaque to his patients and, like a mirror, should show them nothing but what is shown to him.

The interpretation of dreams is the royal road to a knowledge of the unconscious activities of the mind.

The psychical is not necessarily in reality what it appears to us to be.

Author Picture
First Name
Sigmund
Last Name
Freud, born Sigismund Schlomo Freud
Birth Date
1856
Death Date
1939
Bio

Austrian Psychologist, Neurologist, Originator of Psychoanalysis