Carl Jung and Sigmund Freud may have shared similar ideas, concepts or theories in regards to their views on people, but they also had differing thoughts on the subject as well. Jung, as well as Freud, spoke about concepts such as the psyche, and the ego and also provided insight into the area of consciousness and unconsciousness. While Jung and Freud may have written about similar concepts, their definitions for each concept were clearly different. Jung literally replaced each of Freud’s definitions with his own theories and beliefs. Specifically their theories in regards to dream content were very different than one another. Jung also believed that an individual’s functions, both psychological and physical, was characterized more in terms of purpose, and was therefore more teleological than Freud had believed.
However, one of the biggest differences between Jung and Freud involves the fact that Jung completely dismissed Freud’s sexualism which officially labeled Jung’s theories as separate from Freud’s and ultimately different. While Freud was an authoritative therapist, Jung occasionally visited therapy sessions with the patient as their partner. Freud never did such a thing, however he encouraged his patients to free associate. Unlike Freud, Jung did not allow such freedom but instead incorporated more structure into sessions. Jung would often make suggestions to patients in regards to when they should be talking and thinking about. Jung was more optimistic and trusting of people in the sense that he believed that people contained the ability to help themselves get better. He believed that people could self-analyze.
He also believed that people’s minds actually grew outside of the size of their skulls and into the space of other people’s minds. Jung strongly believed that people’s minds were connected to each other, and therefore minds can communicate with one another. This theory continued in the thought that minds can also communicate with nonhuman minds, which led Jung to be known as a mystic among other theorists. Jung truly believes that people are multifaceted individuals who are filled with traits as well as opposites of each of these traits. According to Jung, in order for people to be complete as individuals, they need to accept all traits, even the conflicting traits.
I definitely believe that Jung’s perspective on the person is more accurate than the theories of Freud. I have never agreed with any aspect of Freud’s beliefs. His theories seem to be very off-base with reality. Jung seems more in touch with reality, in my opinion. I really agree with his theory that people are capable of helping to cure themselves and cal also understand his belief that minds connect with one another even though that may seem strange.
Schultz, D. P., & Schultz, S. E. (2008). Theories of Personality. 9th ed. Wadsworth Publishing.