In this essay we will continue to discuss the possibility of a science of psychology. In part 1 we will discuss William James (1842-1910) ideas on this subject. A key theme in part 1 will be the subjective factor in psychology and will ask the question of how can psychology be a science if the subjective factor is always present? Part 2 will be an ambitious attempt to answer that. It will be argued that when the physical body is healthy it is only ‘relatively so' hence there is still something wrong with it. Yet we label it ‘healthy'. The point is that for objective clarity we need to distinguish between health and real suffering. Psychology can obtain objective scientific status and part 2 will explain how. Sonu Shamdasani's Jung and the making of Modern Psychology: The Dream of a Science will be the main source used in part 1 of this work. In part 2 we will use Jung's own work (CW Vol 3: The psychogenesis of Mental Disease) as the key source of that part of the essay, as our focus will be on mental disease (e.g. complexes, schizophrenia) – as we try and establish an objective scientific basis for psychology.
[...] Virtually any mother would not be able to withdraw the feeling-tone and attention of losing their child in a tragic accident. Afterall if she had lost her child then the withdrawal of feeling tone would equate to withdrawal of importance and value of her own child. She would not be able to do this and the social and cultural world is not bigger to her then her child is. However, the extremely difficult and serious area of post-traumatic-stress is not being tackled in this essay. [...]
[...] Likewise the psychologist, although often dealing with neurotic exaggerations can (at least as far as the establishment of a psychological science is concerned) focus on real disease here I mean the type of schizophrenia that results in the person not being able to distinguish between reality and non-reality and relegate neurosis largely to a lack of common sense that can be cured with persuasion and a little education.7 It is true that Jung doesn't like people to say “nothing-but”8. However some neurosis is “nothing-but” silliness. [...]
[...] It is argued in this part of the essay that (already) before 1912 Jung had written enough in this area, for that early work to consist of an objective basis for a psychological science with regards to the sanity/insanity logic expressed above in the conclusion to part 1. And incidentally, this is of course prior to his letting himself drop into the schizophrenic world. So what is Jung's early work (pre 1912) all about? i.e. his Complex Psychology. It's about the dissociability and repression of psychic contents. [...]
[...] The bell which has been associated with food on a number of occasions will produce salivation as if it were food, even when the latter is omitted. Word-association tests use a list of words as stimuli to which the subject is required to respond by saying the first word which occurs to him in response to the stimulus word. It is usual to read out a list of about a hundred words, and to time the interval between stimulus and response by means of a stop-watch. [...]
[...] “Neuroses are specific consequences of an abaissement; as a rule they arise from a habitual or chronic form of it [ ] A neurosis is a relative dissociation, a conflict between the ego and a resistant force based upon unconscious contents.” (Jung pars 515 & 516, p238). See also e.g: (Jung pars 506 & 507, p234 & 235). Jung's thoughts on the inextricable link between affects or feeling-tone are expressed by him in The Psychogenesis of Mental Disease as follows: essential basis of our personality is affectivity” (Jung, C par 78, p38). [...]
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