Page:Freud - The interpretation of dreams.djvu/64

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46
THE INTERPRETATION OF DREAMS

when we place but little value on the psychic activity in the dream, and especially when we declare that the higher intellectual activities are suspended or at least much impaired in the dream.

With unusual unanimity—the exceptions will be dealt with elsewhere—the authors have pronounced their judgments on the dream—such judgments as lead immediately to a definite theory or explanation of the dream life. It is time that I should supplement the résumé which I have just given with a collection of the utterances of different authors—philosophers and physicians—on the psychological character of the dream.

According to Lemoine,42 the incoherence of the dream picture is the only essential character of the dream.

Maury48 agrees with him; he says (p. 163) : "II n'y a pas des rêves absolument raisonnables et qui ne contiennent quelque incohérence, quelque anachronisme, quelque absurdité."

According to Hegel, quoted by Spitta,64 the dream lacks all objective and comprehensible connection.

Dugas19 says: "Le rêve, c'est l'anarchie psychique, affective et mentale, c'est le jeu des fonctions livrées à ellesmêmes et s'exerçant sans contrôle et sans but; dans le rêve l'esprit est un automate spirituel."

"The relaxation, solution, and confusion of the presentation life which is held together through the logical force of the central ego" is conceded even by Volkelt72 (p. 14), according to whose theory the psychic activity during sleep seems in no way aimless.

The absurdity of the presentation connections appearing in the dream can hardly be more strongly condemned than it was by Cicero (De Divin. II.): "Nihil tam praepostere, tam incondite, tam monstruose cogitari potest, quod non possimus somniare."

Fechner52 says (p. 522): "It is as if the psychological activity were transferred from the brain of a reasonable being into the brain of a fool."

Radestock35 (p. 145) says: "It seems indeed impossible to recognise in this absurd action any firm law. Having withdrawn itself from the strict police of the rational will guiding the waking presentation life, and of the attention, the dream whirls everything about kaleidoscopically in mad play."