Essays by a Psychoanalyst. For the scientist the formulation of questions is almost the whole thing. The answers, when found, only lead on to other questions. The nightmare of the scientist is the idea of complete knowledge. Religion replaces doubt with certainty. Science holds an infinity of doubt, and implies a faith. Part 1: Health and Illness. The Concept of a Healthy Individual. Individual maturity implies a movement towards independence, but there is no such thing as independence. It would be unhealthy for an individual to be so withdrawn as to feel independent and invulnerable. Social health is dependent on individual health, society, being, but a massive reduplication of persons. Society cannot get further than the common denominator of individual health, and, indeed, cannot get so far, since society needs must carry it’s unhealthy members. Adolescent boys and girls are beginning to feel real, do you have a sense of self and I’ve been. This is health. From being comes doing, but there can be no do before be, and this is their message to us. No one would claim that the word health is synonymous with the word ease. Ill health is a nuisance, and inhibitions can be destructive and cruel in their operation. Impotence can hurt more than rape. Health is in terms of freedom within the personality, of capacity for trust and faith, of matters of reliability and object, constancy, of freedom from self deception, and also of something that has to do with richness rather than poverty as a quality of personal psychical reality. Living Creatively. Life is worth living or not, according to whether creativity is or is not a part of an individual persons living experience. Create is to bring into existence. There is a feeling of meaningfulness that comes from creative living. The symptom of uncreating living id the feeling that nothing means anything, if futility, I couldn’t care less. When we are surprises at ourselves, we are being creative, and we find we can trust our own unexpected originality. Sum, I Am. The teacher, student relationship is very important. The teacher may need to help where parents have failed. The Concept of the False Self. Each person has a polite or socialized self, and also a personal private self that is not available expect in intimacy. The Value of Depression. Depression has within itself the germ of recovery. It contains guilt (a capacity for which is a sign of healthy development) and with the mourning process. We only make fools of ourselves if we offer good cheer to a depressed person. What can make a difference is external examples of evil. Depression is overcome by a spontaneous lift for the individual. Varieties of Psychology. A lot of times people just need to be listened to to help them uncover the full story without the listener being moralistic. Psychotherapy aims simply and solely at undoing a hitch, so that development may take place where formerly it could not. “Insanity is not being able to find anyone to stand you.” - John Rickman. Cure. A sign of health in the mind is the ability of one individual to enter imaginatively and yet accurately into the thoughts and feelings and hopes and fears of another person; also to allow the other person to do the same to us. Part 2: The Family. The Mother’s Contribution to Society. The home is the parents responsibility. The children do not need to thank their parents for being born. They did not ask to be born. The young mother does not learn from books. That would take the fun and creativity out of it. She needs support and sexual satisfaction from her husband. She needs a nurse and doctor she knows and trusts. She needs access to the best information and knowledge on hygiene. People need to understand and appreciate the sacrifice women make in the first few weeks after birth where they are completely dependent on the mother. Children Learning. Nothing is ever forgotten. Adolescent Immaturity. Since there is no society except as a structure brought about and maintained and constantly reconstructed by individuals, there is no personal fulfillment without society, and no society apart from the collective growth process of the individuals that compose it. Part 3: Reflections on Society. Thinking and the Unconscious. Thinking I’d but a snare and a delusion unless the unconscious is taken into account. This Feminism. Men take risks because they feel guilty for putting women at risk of pregnancy. The Pill and the Moon. The ground is the best place to sit. Discussion of War Aims. The moment we say we fight to posses, or to continue possessing, we introduce complications; and if we are rash enough to assert that we have some quality that our enemies lack, and which ought to be preserved, we have said something that we shall not find easy to justify. There is some point in keeping our aims as simple as possible. The experience of freedom is tiring, and at intervals the free seek a rest from responsibility and welcome control. Freedom puts a strain on the individual's whole personality; the free man is left with no relief from any ideas he may have of being persecuted. He is left with no logical excuse for angry or aggressive feelings except the insatiability of his own greed. And he has no one to give or withhold permission to do what he wants to do - in other words, to save him from the tyranny of a strict conscience. No wonder people fear not only freedom, but also the idea of freedom and the giving of freedom. To be told what to do affords a man great relief and only demands his hero-worship of the person taking charge. It is quite a rare thing to meet an individual who is free and feels free, who can take responsibility for his actions and thoughts without over-frustrating himself, that is, without manifesting inhibition in excitement. The fact that men in slavery love the idea of freedom does not mean that they will love freedom when they are free. At first taste of it, at any rate, they are paralysed by it, fearing what they may do with it, as is well known. Then they come to terms with it, which means that to a greater or lesser degree they give it up. Freedom. “The price of freedom is eternal vigilance.” - John Maynard Keynes. If the environment is good enough, then the individual baby, small child, growing child, older child and adolescent has the chance to grow according to the potential that is inherited. On the other side of the line, where the environmental provision is not good enough, the individual, to some degree or perhaps to a high degree, is not capable of reaching to fulfilment of potential. I am suggesting that while all other kinds of class distinction have validity and produce their own resentments, this one may turn out to be the most significant of all. It is true that a great number of individuals who have done exceptionally well or who have moved the world or who have contributed in an outstanding way have been what they were to the world at great cost, as if they were on the borderline between the haves and the have-nots. One can see how they have made some exceptional contribution out of unhappiness, or been driven by a sense of threat from within. This, however, does not alter the fact that there are two extremes in this area: those who have it in them to fulfil themselves and those who, because of environmental failures in the early stages, are not able to fulfil themselves. It must be expected that the latter resent the existence of the former. The unhappy will try to destroy happiness. Those who are caught up in the prison of the rigidity of their own defences will try to destroy freedom. Those who cannot enjoy their bodies to the full will try to interfere with the enjoyment of the body, even in the case of their own children whom they love. Those who cannot love will try to destroy the simplicity of a natural relationship by cynicism; and (over the border) those who are too ill to take revenge and who spend their lives in mental hospitals make those who are sane feel guilty to be sane and to be free to live in society and to take part in local or world politics. Those who are well enough and free enough must be able to endure the triumph which belongs to their state. Yet nothing but luck gave them the chance to be healthy. Some Thoughts on the Meaning of the Word ‘Democracy’. The essential democracy really does lie with the ordinary man and woman. Ordinary good parents do need help. They need all that science can offer in respect of physical health and the prevention and treatment of physical disease; also they want instruction in child care. Many parents are not ordinary good parents. They are psychiatric cases, or they are immature, or they are antisocial in a wide sense, and socialized only in a restricted sense; or they are unmarried, or in unstable relationship, or bickering, or separated from each other, and so on.