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“This passion because it is so strong, must destroy in order to be contained within the limits of self-preservation.”
Sabina Spielrein, Destruction as the Cause of Coming Into Being
“In young women, I find that a feeling of anxiety is normal and moves to the forefront of repressed feelings when the possibility of fulfilment of the wish first appears. It is a well-defined form of anxiety: You feel that the enemy is within; its characteristic ardour compels you, with inflexible urgency, to do what you do not want to do; you feel the end, the transient, before which you vainly may attempt to flee to an uncertain future. You might ask: Is this all? Is this the high point with nothing more beyond?”
Sabina Spielrein, Destruction as the Cause of Coming Into Being
“The collective psyche denies the present ego and, directly through this denial, creates anew. The floundering ego-particle, inundated with new, more richly adorned images, begins to re-emerge. We see this most beautifully in artistic productions.”
Sabina Spielrein, Destruction as the Cause of Coming Into Being
“When a dreamer substitutes another person for himself, the substitute is not less sharply differentiated than is the dreamer himself. This is merely objectively correct: Other people exist for us only when they are compatible with our own psyche; only suitable people exist for us. When the dreamer substitutes another person for himself, he doesn't care what the person in question might represent. The image occurs immediately as a condensation of different persons. To the dreamer, it depends only on the qualities of the substituted person that correspond to the fulfilment of his wish. Should the dreamer, for example, become envious of beautiful eyes, he condenses various persons with beautiful eyes into a hybrid, producing a type rather than an individual. The type, as investigations on dreams and dementia praecox illustrate, corresponds to an archaic pattern of thinking.”
Sabina Spielrein, Destruction as the Cause of Coming Into Being
“As an example, let us examine a previously differentiated experience: a sunny day in spring that endless generations before us have often enjoyed. To reproduce the experience, we must consciously differentiate the shapes of the trees, grass, and sky, conforming to the current content of consciousness. We no longer are concerned merely with a spring day, but with our own special, personally coloured spring day. On the other hand, when this differentiated product enters another individual's psyche, a re-transformation occurs. Conscious processing by another involves his personal impressions of a spring day. In addition to conscious processing, the image falls into an unconscious ‘working through', moving the current personal impression down to the ‘Mothers' and dissolving it. In the unconscious, we may find the spring day broken down into its components, the sun, the heavens, and plants that are organized (or perhaps more correctly, moulded) according to mythological forms known to us from folk psychology. In each declaration of a thought, which is a portrait of an image, we establish a generalization in which words are symbols, serving to mould universally human and universally comprehensible ideas around the personal, i.e., the impressions are depersonalized.”
Sabina Spielrein, Destruction as the Cause of Coming Into Being
“For psychic life, activation of the experience has only a negative significance, removing both the image-content and the accompanying stimulation. If the desired union with the love object approaches and word becomes deed, the corresponding cluster of images fades, producing a pleasurable feeling of released tension. At this moment, one is psychically wholly unproductive. Every image attains its peak in life as it intensely awaits transition into reality; with realization, it immediately is destroyed.”
Sabina Spielrein, Destruction as the Cause of Coming Into Being
“[W]artime events are associated strongly with the outbreak of neurosis, which is certainly based on a derangement of sexual life. Destructive images accompany war. Since an image once evoked transforms into another, images associated with the destructive component of the reproductive instinct will stir up deadly images of war.”
Sabina Spielrein, Destruction as the Cause of Coming Into Being

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The Essential Writings of Sabina Spielrein: Pioneer of Psychoanalysis The Essential Writings of Sabina Spielrein
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