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The sun. [volume] (New York [N.Y.]) 1833-1916, April 14, 1912, FOURTH SECTION, Image 48

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83 I
J. 1r
It Finds They Have a Definite Mean
ing, but Relate to the Past and
Not to the Future
Much thit ta now to tho popular mind
Hh respect to the phenomenon of
dreams was brouRht. out In thn papers
read and the sulsequont discussion at
thn last meeting of thnJNew York Aondomy
of Medlclno, at which the imychological
theories of Freud wero under considera
Of the two line of research which are I
being followed by Investigators at the '
present time, the physiological Is oon
corned with tho physical state of brain
and nerve cells during the mental proc
esses being studied, while the psychologi
cal line of attack deals exclusively with
the subjective aspect of the question,
with memories, repressed tendencies,
sex peculiarities mid tho like. The
academy's recent meeting considered
only the latter method and examined
some of tho results obtained by psycho
analysis as applied t t tho dream 6tnte
and to the man; neiiro'ns or mental dis
orders generally termed Insanity
A. A. Brill, l'h. n . M I)., clinical ns
slstant In psychiatry and neurology in
Columbia University, who is nn au
thority on dreann and Is well known as
nn exponent or the vlows of the famous
Vienna professor Fraud, whose translator
he Is, rend n paper on tho hynterlr-nl
dreamy Mates, describing day dreams
and citing many intere.uinr; cases which
had come undT his observation.
"From tho study of dream.," said he
"we have learned that m matter hv
absurd n dream may .s"-m. it nevertheliw
contuins snso and meaning if wo find its
latent content, and that every dream,
and for that matter every psychotic
symptom, contains tho hidden fulfllnvnt
of a repressed wish, which usually refers
to tho two great impulses,
hunger and
"The characteristics of these dreamy
states will bo liest described by recalling
lo you the familiar old fable which is
saidtohavooriginatod in India and passed
from the Sanskrit versions with many
variations into many languages, The
story tei.s how an Oriental gliss vender
.at crosslegged villi his basket of glass
ware in front of him Wlnl.i wishing for
purchasers he merqed into (he following
i every:
"'If I sell this whole laiket of glass 1
shall have ten dlnnm. I will then buy
glassware for tho wholo sum, and when
that Is sold I shall havo twenty dinars.
I will then buy glass for twenty dinars
and sell It for forty dinars.'
In his revery he kept on doubling his
fortune in this way until ho wns lm-
raensely rich. Ho bought enchanted
palaces, lived in uiury and lavished
fortunes. His fancies beenmo moro nnd
more extravagant, ho was very happy
and elated, when a nllght movement
suddenly reminded him of his basket,
and tho thought flushed through his
mind, 'What's the pro of bothering with
such worthlebs htufl?' nnd with this he
kicked tho basket over. 'Ihn clanging
of broken glass interrupted his day drenm
and brought him back to himself.
Let iib for a moment think of this
story, which if not true is well founded,
and examine tho different mental opera
tions that onter into its formation. It
ehows the following well defined stages.
Interpretation of Dreams.
There is a first stage of fantastlo
exaltation the content of which deals
with the individual's hopes and aspira
tions. The glass vender is in a stato of
euphoria well being; from a or man
he Is suddenly transformed Into a man of
wealth, and his fortune Is rapidly In
creasing. This Is followed by a stage of
dreamlike withdrawal from realty. He
is no longer controlled by logical Judg
ment and reasoning; his fancies there
fore run riot, as it were; everything Is
changed; it is like a dream where time,
space and natural obstacles are absent.
He amasses an enormous fortune and
owns palaces, in brief ho is nn longer
This Is followed by a very rapid third
stage, which Is dli.tliigulHhsl by a sus
pension of oonsclouHnefto nn absent
mindedness, during whi there nro no
thoughts so to speak, und thn whole
rplsnds Is followed by depreshion ehar
iictertmi by anxiety with its concomitant
ifaantfi-KUitiun, I need hardly buy tint
out hero must havo been depressed on
emerging from his revcry."
In nlmost all cases observed by Dr.
Drill those three stages oould be dis
tinguished, and usually the first stage ii
preceded by a period of craving, as in the
following case, which he cited.
A man who said that was a wearer by
trade complained of strange thoughts
which Interfered with his work. In which
grent concentration of attention la needed,
as much counting has to be done, ttn
consolously he would stop weaving,
forget his work and continue dreaming
until aroused. One of his experiences Is
given in his own words.
"I am working and unoonsoloualy I
begin to think what I would do if I had
I2,ooo, I start a shop and soon earn a
lot of money because I oppress my em
ployees. With the money thus gained
I open a big factory and employ a lot
of greenhorns, whom I force to work
long hours for very little pay. I enlarge
my buines; I have hundreds of people
working for me; I become greater and
greater, when I suddenly find
myself crying becauso I have lost all
my money in Wall Street."
Many more day dreams of tho same
man wero cited. All wore of the same
nature and dealt with wealth or murder.
And all, according to Or. Brill, yiold a
simple explanation under a careful anal
ysis of tho individual's past mental ex
periences. Dreams nro never senseless
Jumbles, but nlwny.s perfect psycholog
ical mechanisms with a definite mean
ing and a wish fulfilment.
Ho goes on to show the necessity In
interpreting dreams of having a knowl
edge of the subject ertendina hiveU intn
Infancy, for many of their components
aro partial impulses which have run
through a definite evolution beginning
j childhood. These impulses, active In
infancy , are normally gradually repressed.
leaving only slight traces of their exist
ence; but they are nevertheless the most
prolific source of dream material and of
j or nisiiuicn, no ouoa avtenuoa 10 tne
striking natural qualities in children of I or xrj numbers, the Indian medl
.cruelty nnd exhibitionism, which, whon ' cln, man dr8(un, hli re.nedu. and not
'7'""m " hb ung na
education, form certain reactions Ilka
sympathy and modesty whloh go to
mnka up thn character of the individual.
Hut on no ImpulMi Is entirely suspended
ouo can always find some traces of It
in tho individual's character and in car
,.,in ,nntnl tnt it will h mr,ifi
Whon ,, Ht holnB Dr. BriU oon-
tmit(1 to dUouM m fullnr d8tft
cont ohaDgl)a ln th utttude of soisnos
Fow foreigners ln India have the privi
lege of witnessing a high caste Hindu
wedding and only special olroumstances
enabled the writer to be present at the
ceremonies described here.
Kuhhodm, tho barber, had arranged
a inarringo between Anandl, only daugh
ter of Dliola Iluksh, a wealthy member
or the Kuhatrlya caste, and Hurindro
Tngoro of the same caste. That Is one
function of barbers in India. Anandl
was not qiilto 10. Surindro was Just
is. Anandl had never soon her future
husband. Xobody had over thought
of asking tho opinion of either of the most
interested parties as to the proposed
The house of Dhola Biiksh was built
around a oourt. One side of this en
closure was given up to the women and
children. As soon as the marriage wan
decided on Dhola Iluksh'n entire house
hold, consisting of alout eighty people,
gave ltKilf over to tho liustlo of prepara
tion. I. mil. 's varieties of sweetmeats
and curries had to io made, Then there
wns the daily exch.mgo of presents be
tween thn two families.
Thn exs-riK(i of a Hindu wedding
oomo upon the bride's father, and they
am mi great that a family wtm-M imes Is
mined or impoverished for many yoarn
by tho marriage of a daughter. Tho
next most costly affair is the burial ser
jvievs. Should the head of the family
toward dreams and thn related phenome
non of neurosis or abnormal mental
Not a Senseless Jumble.
Since the early Greek period," said
he, "numerous theories havo been pro
pounded and entertained in the realms
of religion and of nolonco, but not until
within recent years has investigation
of the dream proceeded on a true psy
chological basts.
"It would lie superfluous and (iiilte
impossible to review the mnny curious
theories held at different epochs in tho
world's history concerning the dream;
suffice it to say that ancients and moderns
differ Tery little in thoir vlows. The
ancient Oreeks believed that the dream
was an inspiration of the gods, that it was
simply a warning or prophecy of things
to oome, and they always gave credence
to It. Kindred thoughts are expressed
In the Bible. Joseph Interpreted all
dreams as a foreboding of tho futtiro
'What Ood is about to do he sheweth
unto Pharaoh,' and al the Scriptures in
form us atsps were immediately taken to
prepare for the approaching famine.
These views have come down to us
trtdltlonally.anddiaregardlngthe numer
ous scientlflo and peoudo-sclentlflo theo
ries we may say that the present popular
belief In dreams differs in no wise from
that of the classical Q reeks and ancient
Egyptians. Every race and religion
still looks upon the dream as something
supernatural and objective, as an in
spiration coming from above, and the
laity still continues to beliove in Its ro-
t tv,. vi. hn.
Midom we hear even of 'dreams coming
"Modem psychology has oontlnued
the work of the ancient writers and as a
result we have numerous valuable con
tributions to the problem of the dream.
Numerous attempts have been made to
show the relation of the dream to normal
and abnormal life, but so far as I know
no author has solved the problem of the
dream so Ingeniously und successfully
escape bankruptcy whon his daughtor
is married, the eldest son la almost sure
to be ruined whoa he buries his father.
The woman barber, who Is another
great Institution in India, come every
day. For two weeks she bathed Anandl
frequently ln perfumed water. Every
day the girl's hands and feet got an appli
cation of henna. For the last four days
Anandl waa compelled to sit rauoh of
tho time holding a small vessel whloh
looked like u teaspoon with a cover. This
contained the dye with whloh the bride's
eyelids wero being blackened. On the
evening of the wedding day Anandl was
bathed in rose water and her hands and
feet got a lost application of ho,nna.
Bhe was dressed ln a red silk sarree
embroidered with gold and finished with
a golden border at the bottom. Around
her waist were, wound chains of gold,
which were fastened by gorgeous buckles
set with Jewels.
Her arms from tho shoulder to tho
wrist were covered with armlets and
bracelets, Closo under hor throat was
a necklace of pearls, lielow which hung
a dozen or more gold chains, Her ears,
which had iieon prlocod in six places,
had earring of lino workmanship sus
pended from each hole. From who.ro tho
hair mot Urn forehead was hung a fringe
of gold and pearls. On her ankles wore
gold bangles. All of this gold would
have proved a heavy burden to the brids
ns Pror. Freud of Vienna. In developing
his psychology of the psyehoneuroses
Freud found that the dream plays a very
Important part in the psyche (I. e. mental
life) of the Individual.
"Tho dream is not a senseless Jumble,
but a perfect mechanism, and when ana
lyred it Is found to contain the f ulfilmont
of a wish; it always treats of the inmost
thoughts of personality, and for that
reason gives in the best access to the
unconscious. No psycho-analysis Is com
plete, nay possible without the analysis
of dreams. The drenm not only helps
to Interpret symptoms but is often an
invaluable Instrument In diagnosis and
treatment. The causative factors of
many neuroses are extremely vague and
usually unconscious to the patient, and
It is by means of the dream that the under
lying etiological or cuaative factors are
Psychic Censorship.
"In order to understand the mechanism
of dreams It will bo necessary to bear
In mind Freud's conception of repres
sion. To forget h a part of human nature;
thin is so obvious that we never oven stop
to think about it. Yet when wo examine
t he things forgot t on we soon ilnd t hat t here
In n method in forgetting: our forgetting
seems to follow a kind of selection.
It was Freud who first called atten
tion to the motives for forgetting. If
we exclude organic brain disturbances,
we find that we are most apt to forget
painful or disagreeable Impressions. This
forgetting as every one knows is purpose
ful and desired. Tho individual strlvos
at all times to rid himself of the unbearable
cither by settling the situation In quee
tion when possible or by dlroctly crowd
ing (t out of his mind. When we meet
with mishaps or failures to whloh we oan
not adequately react, we grieve over
them for a time and then make desperate
efforts to forget them that Is, we repress
Moreovsr. the phantasies whloh are
ooramon to both normal and abnormal
persona may be of a disagreeable nature
or present an unattainable object, and
may therefore be repressed. It often
If she had been obliged to walk, but she
was not.
in another part of the house the gurus
of the two families were laying down
the law to the two fathers-in-law, making
the neoeasary settlements and promises,
'l'h is ceremony, which is tedious and
lasted soveral hours, waa enlivened by
the babus who went among the guests and
sprinkled them with rose water which was
carried in silver vases. Young boys in
gay wedding attire passed from guest to
guest throwing around the neok of eaoh
one a wroath of small white flowers,
Kt ill others glided among the guests of the
higher class off or In g oostly and delicate
Then upon the ears of the guests burst
thn cry, "The bridegroom corneal All
heads were turned to see six little girls
who could not have been over S years
of age bearing lighted torches run through
the oourt and out into the street and
lead Hurindro in.
The bridegroom was seated upon a
rug placed In the centre of the court for
him. While ho was seated on tills rug.
and It was as much as an hour, he was In
structed in his marital rights and duties
by tho family guru,
On the ground, nearly In front of Surin
dro, was a small pan of bright red coals
of sacred fire; and at his side was the
harbor, who waa master of ceremonies
and who from time to Urns blew a trumjfct.
happons that such phantasies aro re
pressed before they are really grasped
by full consciousness. The repressed
material Is pushed into the unoonsolous
and there remains in a dormant state.
Xow and then It is recalled by some asso
ciation but like disturbed ghosts returns
soon to Its resting place.
"In brief, both normal and neurotio
Individuals possess a certain amount
of repression. In tho former this usually
remains inert, manifesting itself only
now and then in psyrhopathologioal
actions or dreams, while in the latter It
forms in addition the symptoms or the
neurosis or psychosis. But no matter
in what form the repression comes to the
surface, whet Her in the form of dreams,
In psychoneurotic symptoms, or in the
utterances or manifestations of the Insane,
it is always so distorted as to be unrec
ognizable to tho individual.
What causes this distortion? When we
examine the literature 'of the past and
present we observe that writers frequently
resort to all sorts of detours, euphemisms
and symbolisms when they wish to ex
press something which would sound either
harsh or objectionable to polite society.
The censor has been established by
society for Its own protection. In the
same way the distortions of the dream
and those apparent in psychotic symptoms
are the work of the psychic censor. This
is a protective mechanism for the good
of the organism."
Three Classes of Dreams.
Without the use of unfamiliar termi
nology Dr. Brill succeeded in giving the
glam vendej& xsbsayi-
I layman a fairly accurate notion of the
components of a dream whloh ha defines
as the manifest and the latent dream
The former.' he goes on to explain,
" comprise all the delusive sensory Im
pressions whloh are recalled by the
dreamer on awakening; while the latter
oomprlse the fundamental thoughts of the
dream as they existed before being sub
jected to the distortion of the psychic
oensor. The manifest oon tent of the
dream seemssabsurd and incoherent, but
by psyoho-aaalysls It oaa readily be
The family guru left the courtyard and
went Into the women's apartments, where
stood the women and children, eaoh
woman with a chuddah drawn tightly
over her face. Then Ave women came ln,
All of them closely veiled and wrapped
In silk sarrees The first was the bride's
mother. On top of her head was a
little tray filled with red hot coals of Are.
Bhe carried a jewelled chatteeof water ln
her hand.
The four other women bore trays loaded
with different kinds of fruit. The women
marched around the bridegroom seven
tlmoB, the mother pouring the water gently
out of the chattee so that it formed a
clrclo around Hurindro. On the soventh
round, when she was standing behind
him, she suddenly threw the tray of burn
ing coals over his head. They glanoed
off his white satin, conical hat and fell
I to his feet in front of htm.
I The mother-ln-law-to-be now loosened
I the tray and removed it from her head.
Turning it upside down on the floor she
stood upon it and with her two hands
I closed together sho touohed the forehead,
lips and chin of her future son-in-law with
oil, plantain and salt. Hho then stepped
' oaldo and tho bride was brought In,
A numlxir of symbollo figures had been
chalked upon a board. On top of these
.figures tho brlds was seated and then
. carried into the roam by the barber and
bis assistants. Within the circle whloh
Forgotten Things Sometimes Get Past
the Psychic Censor in the Brain
While People Sleep
translated into tho latent thoughts, which
always show the fulfilment of a wish.
In this respect dreams are divided into
three classes:
1. Those which represent an unre-
pressed wish as fulfilled, as seen in the
so-called 'convenience' dream and in
children's dreams. For Instance we often
dream of enjoying cold fresh water after
upper of sardines, olives or otnor salty
food. The thirst incites the dream which
tries to appease the sleeper so as to avoid
disturbance of sleep. A boy of 6 dreams
of finding pennies and nlokels, and on
awakening expresses his disappointment.
3. Those which represent the realisa
tion of a repressed wish in an entirely
concealed form.
8. Those whloh represent the 'realiza
tion of a repressed wish in a form in
sufficiently or only partially concealed:
The last group of dreams is usually ac
companied by fear, which interrupts the
dream and which takes the place of tho
distortion found In the second group."
The interesting process called "dream
work" by which the transformation of
the latent into the manifest content of
the dream Is effected Dr. Brill accounts for
by the following theory:
'During our waking state a number of i
thought structures aro constantly being
formed. This aotlvlty is never finished
during the day and the sum of energy
required for the production of those
thoughts would be sufficient to hold
the Interest of the Individual to such
an extent as to Interfere with sleep.
These day remnants nre therefore
changed Into dreams by the dream
work and the elements threatening
disturbance of sleep are thus removed.
The dream Is therefore the guardian
of sleep. But In order that the work of
the dream may act the day remnants
must be capable of wish formation,
for It Is the wish that forms the nucleus
of the dream.
Relate to the Past.
"We are struck by the marked con
densation which takes place In the
transformation of the thought Into
the content of the dream. This con
densation Is effected by the omission
and the subsequent compression of
syllables, words, pictures or situations
whloh have been present In the thoughts
underlying the dream. And this ac
counts for the many gaps, absurdities
and neologisms In the manifest content
of a dream.
"Another effect of the dream work
Is brought about by the process of dis
placement. Thus the elements which
seem most conaploloua in the content
of the dream do not necessarily havo
corresponding importance in the
thoughts or the dream. An Insignifi
cant element may represent the main
thought. Events, thoughts, sentences,
words and pictures may be turned around.
V -
had been made by the water the mother
had spilled Anandl waa carried around
Surindro six times. The board was then
lowered from the shoulders that bore it
and the bride was placed at her husband's
During all this ceremony the bridegroom
had never moved a muscle. The barber
and his assistants now lifted Anandl to
the level of Surlndro's face, underneath a
large sheet whloh had been stretched over
their heads. Tho bride's mother and
another woman, near of Uln mm Ml a1thnt
side of the bridal pair. Each woman held
a light close to the faoe of the bride and
bridegroom and the sarree was removal
from the bride's face.
Anandl covered her faoe with her hands
and sobbed softly; nor could Surindro
master up courage to look at hla partner
for life; but they wero kept ln the same
position for five minutes, while the barber
alternated the hlowln of tli hnrn uv.
wild shrieks, which wero supposed to bring
uown curses upon mo Deads of any who
might speak ill of the bridal pair.
The sheets were then carried away and
ihtk hrl,trnAm wailful Int.. t U , .
house. Tho barltor nnd his assistants car
irind the bride in Just after her husband.
niinin a circle ehnlked on the floor the
bride and bridegroom worn seated oppo
site oneanother; lietweeon them wasa vaae
lilted with flowers. On this vase the back
of the brldsgroom's hand waa placed, while
To these two processes of condnnsatmn
nnd dlsplHccment tho formation of tho
dream Is chiefly due."
It has nlwnys been the symbolism
of the drenm nnd Its reirlizntion which
makes the appeal to the non-Kclcnilflo
curiosity. According to tho translator
of Freud, "tho symbolism in the drenm
is the same to-day ns It was in Ilihllcal
times whon Joseph noted the part of thn
onelroeooptlst and ns we still see it
in the dream books. Bui whereat
the ancients and thn laity of to-day
Ignore their own subjective mind nnd
seek interpretation from magicians nnd
drenm books, wo allow the droamer tn
interpret his own dreams and to find the
symbolisms In his own mind. What
we do Is simply to oall his attention to
the different connections which lis
himself generally cannot see lecaiM
of his own critique, prejudices and
"We also differ from thn ancients and
laity by not seeing ln tho dream thi
future but rather the past. Yet, In a
way, the dream Is alo related to the
future inasmuch as its fulfilled wish repre
sents what we are striving for. This, In
mv nnlnlon. einlalna the ancient nn,l
modern superstition regarding tho future V
realization or dreams. To take another
case which came to my notice and which
shows how there aro dreams which con
tinue to manifest themselves for week
and months until the wish they contain
is actually realized.
His Dream Came True.
"A chronlo alcoholic, showing delusions
of jealousy, disliked a dog because his
wifo 'was more attached to the dog than
to him.' He continued to dream at dif
ferent times that the dog was run over or
taken away by the dog catcher, until on
day during his wife's absence he really
disposed of it. Hem the dream ostensibly
treated of the future, at least, so the wife
thought on her return home.
"Poor Fido,' she exclaimed. 'My hus
band John dreamed only last week that ha
was caught by the dog catchers and now
the dream has come true.'
"This Is the so ml led 'resolution dream.'
The person resolved, perhaps uncon
sciously, to do a certain thing and the
dream continues to represent it as real
ized until It is actually accomplished.
Tills explains the mechanism of the
'dreams that oome true.'
"The realization of our waking dreams,
concluded Dr. Brill, "shows precisely tho
same mechanisms. This con be observed
not only in the individual but in who!
races. Wn all know that the leitmotif
of orthodox Judaism is and always has
been the ret-stahlishment of a Jewish na
tionaiitv, the 'return to Jerusalem,' and
should Zionism over sucoeod in obtain!::
Palestine, tho Biblical dreams, the proplie. '
cies. would lie considered as having 'coni'i
true.' Popular language expresses the
idea in the saying, 'Where there is a will
there is a way."
the back of the btlde's hand was placed
in his palm. The two bands were then
bound together with wreaths of flowers,
while In them the marriage fee was plsced-
Each family guru laid down the I."
to the opposing father-in-law; but not
one word was said to the bridal couple.
At the side of the bride's father was a law
dish ft'led with water from the sacred
Ganges, into which he bad dropped a ruby
ring and a thin Iron bracelet. The bracelet
waa given to the bride and the ring to the
hrldogroom, who wero both sprinkled with
somo of the sacred water and the flowers
were thrown at them.
The brldo, still on the plank, was lifts!
and carried, first to the right side of the
room and then to the loft. The sirreei
of the bride and bridegroom were neit
tied together. This mndo them hustund
and wife.
After the marriage knot had thus been
tied the bride was placed on her feet, stand
ing in front of her husband with her I wok
toward him. The Attendants placed in
hor hand a plate upon which wern stiw
rieo and somo plantain, while a wiP '
lighted straw was thrown nt her feet
The bride waa then conducted t liT
husKind's sido; In the girting f ' "f
hair nt tho from somo red powder
rubbed. This rod powder uuy le 1,1
by wivus only, never by maids or -vide .
and the obiuldah, which she now doni.i'i
lor tn uret time, was drawu ur

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