States of Consciousness Essay

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States of Consciousness

Ebony Bradford

Harrison College

Sigmund Freud revolutionized the study of dreams with his work The Interpretation Of Dreams. Freud developed several themes on dream psychology. He proposed the structure of the Human Psyche – the id, ego, and superego. Sigmund Freud was a world renowned psychologist and writer who forever changed the world of psychoanalysis.
The three structures of the Human Psyche Freud proposed are:
Id - centered around original impulses, pleasures, desires, and wish fulfillment.
Ego - worried with the conscious, the sensible, the ethical and the self-aware aspect of the mind.
Superego - the censor for the id, which is also responsible for enforcing the moral codes of the ego. ( First Freud believed that the Id directed our basic drive instincts. He said that it was unorganized and would seek to obtain pleasure or avoid pain. He described Id as chaos, a cauldron full of seething excitations, it is filled with energy reaching it from the instincts, but it has no organization, produces no collective will, but only motivation to bring out the satisfaction of instinctual needs. ( Next Freud thought of the Ego as the mediator, the egos job is to mediate the intropsychic conflict between the id and superego. The ego is the part of your personality that is responsible for dealing with reality, the ego strives to please the Id’s drive. Lastly, the superego mirrors the internalization of cultural rules that are mainly taught by parents. The superego aims for perfection, works in contradiction to the Id, and can be thought of as a type of conscience that punishes misbehavior with guilt. The superego usually stands in opposition to the desires of the Id because of their conflicting objectives. Freud’s theory on dreams was made up of two principles, Wish Fulfillment, and Manifest v. Latent. In his wish fulfillment theory Freud thought of dreams as holes to our unconscious mind. (Feldman, 2010) His theory was that this is where our fears, emotions, and desires exist, this is where we hide them from our conscious mind. Freud distinguished dreams between manifest content which is what we actually dream and latent content which is the unfulfilled wish that the dream represents. ( When one is asleep, the superego and ego take a break, permitting the Id to present itself in dream symbols. When waking up, we sometimes forget what we dreamt about because the Superego resumes work to suppress the evaluation of the dream meanings that represent desires of the unconscious mind. Due to the complexity of our dreams they require analysis to determine their true meaning. Freud’s main practice for analyzing dreams was free association. Freud encouraged the dreamer to not look at the direct content of the dream but look at the thoughts and emotions they felt from the dream. These thoughts and emotions will then lead to other thoughts and emotions on so on. The task of the Freudian analyst is to record the series of relations and assist the dreamer's self-understanding. Freud would look at each individual component of a dream and use each as a starting point for free association then attempt to pull all the threads together into an overall analysis. Freud’s theories of dream psychologies main focus was to revolve around the unconscious mind of a person. The unconscious satisfies the desires of the person while one enjoys the time of his or her deep sleep. Freud’s theories, and treatments of his patients were debated in 19th century and remain disputed today. There are five phases of sleep: stages 1, 2, 3, 4, and 5 stage 5 is known as REM or rapid eye movement. (Feldman, 2010) Generally when you are sleeping you will begin at stage 1 and go