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[The Key of Dreams and Psychoanalysis - continued]

The Psychoanalytic and the Classical Method

Freud's statement that dream is the accomplishment of an unconscious wish creates the impression that psychoanalysis brought a revolutionary contribution in the realm of interpretation. Because it is supposed to posses, in this regard, a vision considered as "scientific", radically opposite to the popular, or traditional one.

The facts are not at all like that. If we study the classification of dreams in the antiquity - and I especially refer here to Macrobius' work Comments upon Scipio's vision - we notice that the tradition also remarked the dreams with a "scientific" content, the same type as those approached by psychoanalysis.

On short, Macrobius distinguishes four categories of dreams. Three of them are interesting to the interpretation work, while the last one remains, so to say, the deal of common people.

The first three categories include: symbolical dream, vision dream and oracular dream. (6) The last one refers to the dreams that comes from the nocturnal ebullition of our daytime impressions. We could clearly notice that the this last category defines the dreams examined by Freud.

The conclusion would be: the ancient mentality also had the knowledge of the dreams of "profane" nature, namely those that aren't worth to be interpreted, but which, later on, represented the subject matter of the psychoanalytical "scientific" research!

On the other hand, it is obvious that, being interested in the "profane" dreams, having doubts concerning the traditional  mentality - from a scientific position - Freud ignored the sacred dreams (the first three categories at Macrobius). He gave thus the sensation that these could be included to the chapter of wish-dreams, familiar to him, when they are not the result of the poetical, philosophical or religious intended creation.

1. Sigmund Freud: The Interpretation of Dreams, Science Publishing House, 1993, p. 91.

2. Ibid. p. 92.

3. Ibid.

4. Ibid.

5. It's clearly understood that the dream is not fully interpreted through psychoanalytical method illustrated here. We have restricted to an example of psychoanalysis applied to dream, simplified at the most.

6. The symbolical dream "covers in metaphors, as in a riddle, a significance that cannot be understood without interpretation". The vision dream - horama - "is a premonitory disclosure of a future event". The oracular dream, or chrematismos, is recognized when, while sleeping, the parent of the person who dreams or some other respected or impressive person - maybe a priest or a god - reveals, without any help of the symbols, what will happen, what should or shouldn't be done". (Eric R. Dodds: Greeks and the Irrational).


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Recommended books related to this paper

- Sigmund Freud:
The Basic Writing of Sigmund Freud (The Interpretation of Dreams)

- Artemidorus:
Interpretation of Dreams: Oneirocritica

- Macrobius
Commentary on the Dream of Scipio

- Eric R. Dodds
Greeks and the Irrational

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