Freud on the magic of Psychoanalysis

“Nothing takes place between them except that they talk to each other. The analyst makes use of no instruments— not even for examining the patient—nor does he prescribe any medicines. If it is at all possible, he even leaves the patient in his environment and in his usual mode of life during the treatment...The analyst agrees upon a fixed regular hour with the patient, gets him to talk, listens to him, talks to him in his turn and gets him to listen... It is as though he were thinking: ‘Nothing more than that?... ‘So it is a kind of magic,’ he comments: ‘you talk,and blow away his ailments.’ Quite true. It would be magic if it worked rather quicker. An essential attribute of a magician is speed—one might say suddenness—of success. But analytic treatments take months and even years: magic that is so slow loses its miraculous character.”

― Sigmund Freud, The Question of Lay Analysis


Freud and the unconscious mind by Tina Zellmer

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