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Freud Material

by: Ericka Núñez

Freud Material REL 30500

Ericka Núñez

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About this Document

These notes cover most of what we saw of Freud
Psychology of Religion
Dr. Michael Mason
Class Notes
Psychology, religion, Freud




Popular in Psychology of Religion

Popular in Religion

This 6 page Class Notes was uploaded by Ericka Núñez on Wednesday September 14, 2016. The Class Notes belongs to REL 30500 at Lindenwood University taught by Dr. Michael Mason in Fall 2016. Since its upload, it has received 4 views. For similar materials see Psychology of Religion in Religion at Lindenwood University.


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Date Created: 09/14/16
I. Different concepts of religion and the researcher’s response to them ­ Religion: from a base noun meaning fear or awe in the presence of mystery; or defined as coming from the Latin ligare ­ To reconnect to something; God, state of mind, nature, cosmic force, the  community ­ To repair some kind of basic brokenness within the individual.. striving for a  sense of wholeness or completeness; feeling like we should connect to whom  we are supposed to be; are we really good or bad; we all feel like we have  errors that we haven’t figured out just yet ­ PERSONAL: William James “a sense of helplessness or incompleteness…”  How does religion function in life to cope with stress, health, well­being in the individual? ­ SOCIAL/SOCIETAL: How the group processes relate and how the individual  relates to the group; humans have a tendency to go to places where we are  accepted by society RELIGIOUS SUBSTANCE, FUNCTION (how to do it), AND FORM (formal aspects) ­ Substance: emphasis on the belief, creed, doctrine, or practice ­ The substantive function of religion. What is important is what is believed, not how it functions in a person’s life. ­ The basic assumption that something is there ­ And therefore, trying to understand it and finding ways to relate to it.  ­ Social level: the common creed or “religion” of the group ­ Personal level: what the person believes (and that may or may not be the same as the social group) “I’m catholic but I don’t practice it” ­ Functional: Emile Durkheim: positive social function that stabilizes society and  overcomes “anomie” or isolation; Milton Yinger: manner in which individuals  cope with ultimate concerns, like death ­ Emotion: helping us deal with feelings, face death, overcome loss ­ Intellectual: defining reality and giving reasonable meaning to life ­ Social: defining what the social order is supposed to be like; examples: gay  marriage and abortions ­ What the substance does ­ Formative: performed in relation to or because of the substantive or functional  features of religion; or “formal”. ­ Conceptual: formal, accepted concepts everyone assumes ­ Performative: accepted ways of acting or thinking ­ Social: accepted ways of doing funerals, weddings, etc ­ Practice, belief, etc, has to be done in a certain way One function  different forms: Example: A funeral ­ Substance: there is a heaven (BFK) ­ Function: get the soul to heaven (E) ­ Form: put body in casket, do ritual (make the function work). (P) Fit these 3 with BPFKE. Almost everything has, at one time or another, been a part of some religious tradition. Defining religion for the purposes of psychological research: ­ What one does to come to grips with existential questions ­ Contextual definition based on “cumulative tradition” versus “faith” ­ Personal attentiveness to realities perceived as “supernatural” ­ Combining substance and function: conscious dependency on ‘numinous’  evidenced in personality/experience/thinking and the… Several definitions: ­ Way of orienting a person to the world; tells you what’s meaningful, acceptable ­ Way of defining reality; same humans, same world, different worldviews ­ Means of providing significance ­ The object of fundamental allegiance and commitment Psychologists are not “essentialists” trying to find the essential truths; not trying to prove that  God exists. II. Conceptual Parts Psychography: describing religion plainly and objectively…  1. Beliefs: what people believe as religious truth. The area where religions basically  differ. ­ Warrants that the religion exists; the ground of belief ­ Belief about the divine purpose of human kind ­ How to best implement the divine purpose ­ Practice: what people do as a part of the practice of their faith ­ Specific expected acts ­ Rules or ethical codes 2. Practices: how people actually work this things out ­ Prayer, meditation, liturgics, giving, service, sacrifices 3. Feelings: how emotion or conscious experience is involved ­ Desire to believe, fear of falling away, sense of well­being, etc. ­ Can be perceived only indirectly ­ Emphasis on inner experience ­ These feelings can be motivational ­ Dramatic changes in feelings can correlate with life changes ­ Often used as a test of validity of faith experiences 4. Knowledge: what is known (information, data) about the beliefs ­ Amount and extent of knowledge varies from person to person ­ Attitude toward information that challenges or contradicts 5. Effects: how religion guides or directs everyday actions and lives ­ Effect on the “non­religious” parts of life ­ Can be positive or negative on the personal or social level ­ Religion is often evaluated only on its effects; “all Muslims are terrorists” Historical/Theoretical What you should know or consider about Forsyth’s chapter on Freud: ­ Why is Freud the way he is? What is it about him? Based on his background,  understanding, training, etc. ­ How do you feel about being “quasi­immortal germ plasm”? ­ How would you write his religious autobiography? ­ What do you think of his rather Buddhist idea that the goal of life is death? ­ What do you think of his ideas of civilization being a battle between repression  and eros? ­ What is his idea of human nature and do you agree or disagree? What are the  basic assumptions of human nature? Good or Evil/selfishness ­ The psychologist Albert Ellis has said that guilt is a useless and counterproductive emotion. How do you reconcile this with Freud’s ideas on guilt? ­ Do you agree with Freud’s ideas on the definitions of religion? What about his  ideas of the two Moses (Mosi)? The New Psychology ­ Around 1900: “Psychology” begins and is exciting, novel, creative, adventurous ­ Only when people began to emphasize a naturalistic world view could religious  behavior and belief be subjected to naturalistic study. Two basic, early approaches to the study of religion: ­ Empirical­statistical (Starbuck)  Psychology of Religion, 1899; philosophy  that “…there is no fraction (of the universe) that is not determined…”; his  research:  12 open ended questions  Respondents wrote a religious autobiography  Charted the information on large charts and looked for a composite  picture of conversion in general  Two Methods of Study: o Particular conversion in a single person  Ideographic o Composite picture of conversion in general; patterns in different  people in conversion  nomothetic  empirical­statistical  Starbuck philosophy that “…there is no fraction (of the universe) that is not determined…” ­ Interpretative­analytical (William James)  Varieties of Religious  Experience, 1902; problem is subjective bias because the patterns James saw were subjective. ­ Cause and effect ­ Biographical or literary case studies > philosophical analyses ­ His biases: 1. Interjected his own philosophy: fruits of conversion are important… reflects his pragmatism; if you’re going to convert, something  should happen to trigger it 2. Emphasized the extreme forms of conversion: Starbuck >  general/normal 3. Insight from phenomenological description, logical analysis,  speculation: Starbuck > statistical summaries  Psychological Approaches 1. Psychodynamic Model  Freud; conscious, subconscious, ego, superego, id 2. Personality Traits  Carl Jung will break from Freud and talk about our strengths and our  “shadow side”; cognitive functions (4 letter combinations) 3. Conditioning/Behaviorism  Pavlov, Skinner, Bandura; the assumption that all behavior  is conditioned and therefore not a free choice.  Instinct (McDougall) vs. Behaviorism  4. Human Potential  Carl Rogers, Abraham Maslow (hierarchy of needs) 5. Social Forces Model  almost an anthropological model, looking at social forces that  mold behavior. 6. Cognitive Emphasis  cognition is the response to an interpretation mediated by the  society around us rather than to an experience 7. Neuro­Linguistic Programming (NLP)  an approach to communicate, personal  development, and psychotherapy created by Richard Bandler and John Grinder in the  1970s. A connection between the neurological processes (neuro), language, and behavior. Can model skills of exceptional people, those skills can be acquired by anyone. Can treat  phobias, depression, habit disorder, myopia, etc.  William McDougall and instinct vs. John B. Watson and behaviorism. 1930­1959  Almost total lack of systematic work in Psychology of Religion.  Note: 1929 Louis Thurstone measure of social attitudes toward the church.  ­ Mathematical measure ???  Thurstone’s work contributed to major advances in the fields of test theory,  psychophysics, and the measurement of attitudes. Factors in the decline:  Debate over Darwin: evolution and creation must be mutually exclusive  The cure of sick souls is now the job of the psychologist not the pastor.  Movement from the philosophy department to its own… like physics it’s a Hard Science,  not speculative like philosophy or religion.   Unable to find competent and thoughtful psychologists who can or want to study religion  without bias.  Most won’t risk professional stature dealing with religion 1927, “The Future of Illusion” by Sigmund Freud Freud and the MMPI (Minnesota…) Freud’s drives ­ our archaic heritage  we are part of the culture around us ­ the return of the repressed ­ recurrence of traumatic event  ­ our sex drives and the Oedipus Complex ­ the superego punishes even for evil thoughts and wishes To bring about the triumph of life (Eros) over death, civilization must limit aggression  which  becomes repression  and we feel guilty for our aggressiveness  which makes us hate ourselves  so we want to die (Thanatos) | how Freud would see my analysis paper; even after feeling guilty about repression, we return  to our religion which prohibits aggression too so it’s like a cycle Neurosis: a mental and emotional disorder that affects only part of the personality, is  accompanied by a less distorted perception of reality than in a psychosis, does not result in  disturbance of the use of language…; distorted perception of reality Psychosis: fundamental derangement of the mind (as in schizophrenia) characterized by  defective or lost contact with reality especially as evidenced as delusion, hallucinations… MMPI  The Minnesota Multiphasic Personality Inventory ­ Most commonly used by mental health professionals to assess and diagnose mental illness. 


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