Freudian Dream Analysis
Freudian dream analysis is founded on Freud's belief that dreams are an expression of a repressed wish that we would rather not admit to. As such, a dream being an unfulfilled wish is indicative of conflict within the psyche. In deciphering dreams, Freud believed this conflict within the mind could be resolved via the use of a technique called free association.
During free association, the dreamer is steered toward focussing on the thoughts and emotions the dream produces and not its direct content. Freud believed this technique, once initiated, led to a flow of more thoughts and emotions associated with the dream. Many people believe free association to simply be saying whatever comes into the patients head. This is not so. The patient’s comments are founded on the links between, their dream, what they say to begin with about their dream, what they say after that, and so on and so on. For example, if a person’s dream included water they might relate this to a holiday they had as a child at a lake, this may lead to a memory about fishing on the lake, this may lead to a memory of the person’s father, etc.
Freud would have his patient explain the dream and he would then examine all factors, elements, and pieces provided. These would then be used as singular foundations for the use of free association. Once convinced the extracted themes had been obtained, Freud would piece the puzzle together as a whole to form a complete analysis. Freud considered this was the best means to “sneak up” on the repressed material.
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