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The Future of Freudian, Adlerian and Jungian philosophies.


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C. G. Jung Speaking: Interviews and Encounters (Bollingen Series XCVII)

Stephen Black: Professor Jung, could you tell me how it came about that psychological medicine came to be divided so sharply in the first half of this century into Freudian and Adlerian and Jungian philosophies?

Dr. Jung: Well, that is so.

Always in the beginning of a new science, or when a new problem is tackled in science, there are necessarily many different aspects, particularly in a science like psychology, and particularly so when an absolutely new factor

has been brought into the discussion. Stephen Black: Which was that?

Dr. Jung: In this case, it was the unconscious—the concept of the unconscious.

It has been a philosophical concept before—in the philosophy of Carl Gustav Carus and then his follower Ed- uard von Hartmann.

But it was a mere speculative concept.

The unconscious was a kind of philosophical concept at first, but through the discoveries by Freud it became a practical medical concept, because he discovered these mechanisms

or connections. . . . He made of it a medical science. This is empirical.

An empirical medical science.

That was an entirely new proposition.

And naturally quite a number of opinions are possible in the beginning, where one is insufficiently acquainted with the phenomena.

It needed many experiments and experiences until one could establish a general terminology, for instance, or even a doctrine.

Now, I never got as far as to produce a general doctrine, because I always felt we don’t know enough.

But Freud started the theory very early and so did Adler, because that can be explained by the human need for certainty.

You feel completely lost in such an enormous field as psychology represents.

And there you must have something to cling to, some guidance as it were, and that is probably the reason why this kind of psychology set out with almost ready-made theories.

At least, the theories were conceived in a moment when one didn’t know enough about the role of the psychology of the unconscious.

That is my private view, and so I’ve refrained from forming theories. Carl Jung, C.G. Jung Speaking: Inter- views and Encounters, Pages 252-267.

Stephen Black: What in your view will be the final outcome of this kind of scientific quarrel between the various schools of medical psychology?

Dr. Jung: For the time being it is certainly a sort of quarrel, but in the course of time it will be as it always has been in the history of science.

You will see that certain points will be taken from Freud’s ideas, others from Adler’s ideas, and something of my ideas.

There is no question of victory of one idea, of one way of looking at things.

Such victories are only obtained where it is a matter of pretension, of convictions, for instance, philosophical or religious convictions.

In science there is nothing of the kind, there is merely the truth as one can see it. Carl Jung, C.G. Jung Speaking: Interviews and Encounters, Pages 252-267.