Monday, December 17, 2007

Do you think Freud, Jung, Nietzsche and Alder were Healthy?

Martinez said:

I disagree. Each world view has consequences. For example, if one believes there is no objective good and evil, that one is beyond good and evil, then wider sexually abusing or murdering of children is a consequence. For the Christian these are undesirable, but for Alderian psychology this is desirable.

Christians who sex abuse are betraying their ideal, whereas Alderians are fulfilling their ideal.

Younos said:

Nietzsche argues that when one believes that individual self-expression is a bad thing, and that the libdinal energies are evil, then a general herdlike mentality and an unhealthy devaluation of everything vital is a consequence. For the healthy person these are undesireable, but for Christians they are desireable. Christians who condemn self-aggrandizement in favor of a meek and lowly sheep-like existence, who are at perpetual war with their natural passions and therefore make themselves sick, all because they count this life as nothing compared to heaven -- are fulfilling their ideal.

Martinez responded:

You have to be kidding. Do you think Nietzsche, Freud, Jung and Alder were healthy?

-Nietzsche went insane. One can not make oneself more mentally sick than that.

-Alder wanted therapy in which adults had sex with children. Do you think that is sick or healthy?

-Jung in a Nazi psychotherapeutic journal said, "The 'Aryan' unconscious has a higher potential than the Jewish." Were the Nazis and Jung sick or healthy?

-Freud committed suicide and he was a cocaine addict. Do you think that is sick or healthy?


At 8:01 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Mr. Martinez,

Nietzsche's argument was simple: the unconscious libdinal energies are a vital component of our physiological make-up. To believe that the libidnal energies are evil or "sinful" -- as for instance Paul and Augustine did -- and therefore to proclaim war against them is self-destructive. When we do violence to ouselves in this manner we cannot possibly remain healthy. Moreover, when we are healthy and strong we retain a solid sense of selfhood. Indeed if we are to love anybody at all there must first be a self who does the loving. Nietzsche points out that Christianity promotes not only unselfishness but self-less-ness, and that this too goes against our vital interests. In short, Christianity has turned out as a religion that is life-negating.

Regardless of whether we think Nietzsche, Freud, Jung and Adler were "healthy", their theory was based on promoting vital interests. But since you brought this up, I'll go ahead and point out the following:

The cause of Nietzsche's insanity is unknown. It could have been something genetic, in which case the application of his theory to himself had nothing to do with what eventually happened to him.

Your comment about Adler is an instance of circular reasoning. You are beginning with the assumption that conventional western morality is "healthy", then arguing from this that Adler's theory is unhealthy. Throughout this dialog I've been pointing out that our ideas of what is moral may not always serve our vital interests (which was Nietzsche's point), and Adler was approaching things from exactly this angle.

Regarding Jung, if his statement that "The Aryan unconscious has a higher potential than the Jewish" was made as an objective scientific observation (regardless of whether he was right or wrong), that has nothing to do with being healthy or sick.

The use of cocaine wasn't frowned on in Freud's day because its danger wasn't clearly understood at the time. Many physicians prescribed cocaine to their patients as a euphoric. They had good intentions. Freud himself used cocaine on occasion but he certainly wasn't an "addict". Finally, Freud had a friend assist him in committing suicide because he had cancer, and after many years the suffering it caused him had become unbearable. None of the above has anything to do with mental illness.

Ken Younos


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