(Image provided by Derin Guler)


Opinion: Sigmund Freud’s invalid psychoanalytic theory points out that judging is foolish

Psychology is a scientific field focused on studying the way the human mind works and how it influences behavior and personality, according to the Cambridge Dictionary. The field is not definite because the human mind is an immensely abstract element. It is so complex that each of many gaps experts consider spot on and attempt to…
<a href="https://highschool.latimes.com/author/deringuler/" target="_self">Derin Guler</a>

Derin Guler

June 12, 2020

Psychology is a scientific field focused on studying the way the human mind works and how it influences behavior and personality, according to the Cambridge Dictionary. The field is not definite because the human mind is an immensely abstract element. It is so complex that each of many gaps experts consider spot on and attempt to unravel, undoubtedly constituting a bombard of other questions.

As the lectures on psychology go, students do not learn about universal formulas they can utilize in explicit problems and get it over with. Instead, psychology is more heavily a science but with a distinguishing touch of English: It is open-ended and can be interpreted in many many different ways.

This interpretation will turn into a universally accepted theory if only it has got an adequate scientific basis which is a replicable experiment. To name a few, the humanistic approach to personality aggrandizes the individual and stresses concepts such as free-will, self-efficacy and personal growth, according to the AP (Advanced Placement) Introduction to Psychology textbook. Whereas, the behavioral approach totally disregards the mind’s capacity and looks at what’s observable (our actions). The psychoanalytical approach, on the other hand, questions the deep ends of the human brain which is unconscious.

There are loads of approaches and theories like these that are so dissimilar, making it almost laughable. Some of them were debunked years ago when scientists revealed that it can not be scientifically proven. Some others are maintained and still in use today.

These theories and approaches differ in their explanations, procedures and ethics. But what unites them is the ultimate question they’re trying to answer: What shapes our personalities and prompts our behaviors?

Among many, we will be focusing on psychoanalytic theory. And there’s no discussion of psychoanalytic theories without the referral to Sigmund Freud, the person who comes to mind right off the bat when the subject’s psychology.

Freud was a beneficial figure. As Harvard Health mentions, Freud’s findings defined the field of psychology in the 20th century. Even my grandparents, who are the ones to ask me what psychology really is when I tell them I want to study it a few years from now, are somehow familiar with Freud and even have their very own opinions on his studies.

Yes, there is controversy on the matter of our dearest Freud’s theories. Why? Because even though they have shed light on many fields, a remarkable amount of Freud’s theories can not be scientifically proven to be accurate; in other words, most are pure scam.

“Psychoanalysis has already been discredited as medical science,” according to the New Yorker.

In his psychoanalytic studies, Freud focused on unraveling the power of the unconscious mind. He had a lot to say about many repressed unconscious thoughts, impulses and traumas that play a role in our behaviors.

One theory he provided to understand people’s behaviors was that our unconscious is made of three parts: ID, ego and superego.

The ID is our self-centered side and houses our basic drives, wanting everything to be its way, according to the Journal Psyche Organization. The superego stores our values including moral attitudes learned from parents and society. It develops as soon as the child forms his/her own independent set of rules based on external rules and standards imposed on them by the world. If you have suffered from the feeling of inadequacy and yelled out “I am not good enough!” over a hundred times, welcome to the club, our superego is to blame.

Lastly, Freud believed our egos to be our consciousness and the rational part of our minds. It is responsible for making compromises and governing actions that both gratify the id’s impulses but also satisfy the superego.  Each part of the personality comprises of unique features with parts that make a “relative contribution to an individual’s behavior,” which interact to form a whole, according to Simply Psychology.

Some also like imagining these parts as the two angels on both shoulders that children shows loved to use. The superego portrayed as the angel on the right, the ID as the devil on the left and the ego as the real confused character in the middle. 

For instance, imagine someone who has drained up all the money his parents saved up for their retirement. Freud claimed that guy to be dominated mainly by his ID; whereas a queer woman who has lived up to her family’s religious beliefs and never confronted her parents to feel accepted and valid, would be dominated mainly by her superego.

Or simply, when you crave for a whole entire chocolate cake but are on a diet, your ego terminates the unconscious conflict and makes you eat just a piece of the cake.

Even though this psychoanalytic theory of Sigmund Freud failed under scientific scrutiny, it has demonstrated to us that humans are not fully in control of their actions. The way you have been raised, your culture, religion, parent’s ideals, the abundant sets of school/work and home rules you have been demanded to follow impact what you do. Of course, your drives and powerful motives that are solely concerned with only your short term happiness also add up to determine your actions.

In other words, the way you behave is the ultimate compromise of millions and millions of factors you are not aware of. Freud classified this as your selfish desires and moral values. 

Accordingly, we are not always surrounded by people with alike backgrounds, personal values and priorities. Therefore, judging one another and jumping to conclusions without fully considering what the other side’s ego might be telling them to do, according to their superego and ID, is not a smart move.

Freud as a psychoanalyst may have lacked a scientific basis in his abstract theories, which might have deterred his success, but he knew something for sure: The human mind is profoundly complex and no individual’s mind works the same way as someone else’s does.

Yet, why do you think we still judge one another based solely on the appearances, infer inaccurate objectives by seeing what we want to see or accuse without listening? 

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