We tend to think that dream theories started with Freud and Jung. In fact a number of dream pioneers had published on the topic in the late 1800s’ Europe. I spent the last months reading one of these seminal books entitled Les Reves et les Moyens de les Diriger; Observations Pratiques (Dreams and the Ways to Direct Them: Practical Observations) published in 1878 by French scientist / academic Marquis d’Hervey de Saint-Denys, based on his detailed record of and reflections on his dreams over many years – a work Freud mentioned but dismissed without even reading it. I intend to present this book in its context and look at some of Hervey de Saint- Denys’ findings that I think relevant to Freud and Jung and contemporary dream theories.
In therapy we are constantly struggling with the paradox and tension between firmness/rigidity and flexibility. The first provides the requisite clarity and stability that generates safety, the second provides for the possibility of change. Boundaries are important in a variety of ways in all therapies. Within the Conversational Model boundaries are seen as central to the notion of self and its development. Without developing the capacity to distinguish between inner and outer there can be no self and thus there can be no distinction between self and other.
The relationship between borderline personality disorder (BPD) and traumatic attachment and abuse in childhood is documented in numerous studies around the world. Over seventy per cent of these patients reported a childhood history of emotional abuse – that is frequent experiences of being shamed or humiliated, being frustrated by being given mixed messages, being put in impossible situations, having their thoughts and feelings denied.
We announce our arrival in the world as separate individuals with the cry. The cry, and the environmental response to the cry, determines the initial atmosphere in the consciousness of the neonate.
This talk puts forward some ideas towards an answer to this question. The discussion involves observations from two pioneers of dream research, Maury and Hervey de Saint-Denis; a dream of Jung, commented
This seminar creates discussion around one of the most important problems facing any health professional working at the coalface. How do we recognise trauma in the infant, the toddler, the Pre-school child? How are an infant or preschool child’s physical, psychological and mental faculties affected by early trauma? How does the child respond to it in their body and in their psyche? How do we respond as professionals to help the parent, the teacher, the friend, the partner to intervene in a way that will prevent or undo harm? Trauma interferes with a child’s capacity to learn from experiences, trauma creates a vacuum where imagination could be, where play could enact his inner world, where learning as a pleasurable part of living could occur.