Analytical Psychology - What is it?

Analytical Psychology, or Jungian Psychology, how is most popularly called, is a depth psychology

that studies the humanity considering different approaches for understand human kind, their 

behavior and mental healthy, as Psychiatry, Philosophy, Ethnology, Mythology, Arts and 

Literature,ultimately, all the sciences and fields of knowledge can contribute and could be 

connected with humanity. Since everything is part of human culture, all kinds of knowledge were 

integrated in Jung's depth psychology, and his works received the collaboration of the most brilliant 

minds of his epoch. 

 

Dr. Carl Gustav Jung is one of the most prominent minds in our world. His concepts are inserted in 

many fields of Psychology and Psychiatry, and a considerable number of them are part of the 

common vocabulary, as archetype, synchronicity, introversion and extroversion, persona and 

shadow. 

 

The conceptualization of the Self, Archetype, Collective Unconscious and the self-regulation of the 

psyche are a turning point on the development of psychotherapy. The psyche has a tendency to 

compensate the consciousness unidirectional position, similar to a compensatory development of 

organs in organ inferiority. This means that any unidirectional behavior or attitude has a tendency to be compensated by the unconscious, as the psyche seeks to find a balance. The activity of the 

unconscious looks for a self-regulation of the psychic apparatus, the conscious orientation is 

selective, demands direction and consecutively the exclusion of everything irrelevant. In this way, 

consciousness is one-sided, and what was excluded now belongs to the personal unconscious. 

Jung differentiated the concept of unconscious from Freud, that difference changes considerably the psycho therapeutic understanding and conduct of the analysts oriented by the two schools, the 

Freudians and the Jungians. 

 

Freud describes the unconscious as the instinctual psyche as the 'id', and the collective 

consciousness as 'super-ego', in which the individual is partly conscious and partly unconscious, 

because the contents are repressed. The 'ego' is the conscious part of the personality, and has to deal with the 'id' drives and the social conventions demanded by the “super-ego”.Jung describes the 

personal unconscious as a more superficial layer of the unconscious, which derives from personal 

experiences. On a deeper layer rests the collective unconscious, which does not derive from the 

personal acquisition, but is inborn, universal, it has contents and modes of behavior that are more or less the same everywhere and in all individuals. The collective unconscious constitutes a common 

psychic substrate of a supra personal nature which is present in everyone of us. 

 

The contents of the personal unconscious constitute the personal and private side of psychic life 

that, for one reason or another, pathological or not, are not in the consciousness. The contents of the collective unconscious, on the other hand, are known as archetypes and are represented by the 

opposite and complementary images of the symbols. 

 

For Jung, archetypes are universal, archaic patterns and images, that derive from the collective 

unconscious and are the psychic counterpart of instinct. They are inherited potentials which are 

restored when they enter consciousness as images or manifested through a behavior or interaction 

with the outside world. They are autonomous and hidden forms, which are transformed once they 

enter consciousness and adopt a particular expression by individuals and their cultures. 

 

The archetypes are 'numinous' contents, relatively autonomous. They cannot be integrated simply 

by rational means, as they require a dialectical procedure, a real coming to terms with them. In other words, the client needs to “dialogue” with them, in a kind of an inner colloquy, in which way the analyst can help as a facilitator, or taking the role of the transcendent function. 

 

The main archetypes that structure the personality are: Ego, Persona, Shadow, Anima, Animus and 

Self. Other archetypes are, of course, very important, and inestimable tools in order to explain and 

understand the development of the personality, as well the analytical process: The Great Mother, 

The Great Father, The Child, The Hero, The Old Wise Man, and The Old Wise Woman. 

 

Clinical work demands to know, as well, the concepts of Ego, Psychopathology and the Theory of 

Complex.

Solange Bertolotto Schneider

 

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