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The Basic Concept of Analytical Psychology is the Process of Individuation

In this text I intend, in a loving way, as a therapist, to approach the central concept of analytical psychology, one of the great pillars supporting the theory developed by Carl Gustav Jung (1875-1961).

We can consider that the process of individuation happens from the moment we are born, because it is a process of self-realization, of becoming an individual being, a being that realizes itself in essence, in other words, it becomes an autonomous unit (with the capacity to function, as an entity separate from the matrix - internal and indivisible unconscious, becoming a totality). The main focus of individuation is self-knowledge, and I believe that this movement of information transduction is a continuous process... that accompanies you throughout your life.

Human beings develop in many ways throughout their lives, and they do so from the time they are babies until they reach the age of 70 or 80, which is normally considered life expectancy in the West. Jung was the first to differentiate himself in this sense from other theories, which argue that psychological and character development occurs basically in childhood. For Jung, development is continuous and can be achieved at any age (even in middle age and old age), without minimizing the importance of the first years of life. Therefore, for Jung, psychological development is associated with physical development only to a certain extent.

The process of individuation seeks to take the individual out of isolation, bringing him closer and projecting him into a loving collective coexistence through the path of self-knowledge that teaches us to learn to deal with the negative and the positive. And for this, the Ego, which has a basic and fundamental function, consists of the organization of Consciousness, made up of perceptions, memories, recollections and thoughts. The human being can only individuate to the extent that the Ego allows the experiences received to become part of Consciousness. Therefore, Consciousness and Individuation go hand in hand, step by step, in the development of a personality, because the beginning of the Conscious Mind also marks the beginning of the Individuation process.

Jung's theory encompasses the contribution to archetypal potential, which is the universal aspect within the individuation process. In other words, for Jung, it goes far beyond the Ego and Persona, idealized in the first half of life. From middle age onwards, the task is to unify the ego with the unconscious, which contains what the person hasn't experienced before, in other words, unrealized potential. The well-known mid-life crises to which Jung seems to have devoted most interest.

Individuation expands into the spiritual field of art and religion, delving into the depths of the Soul, dragging out the most sacred, the purest, the most loving... consecrating as the great mystery of existence the inner god that manifests within each one of us! In short, the process of individuation occupies the subject's entire life and psychotherapy plays a significant role in this context. The analyst is an expert in the techniques, but the analysand is an expert in him/herself... And, united in an amplified state of consciousness, they lovingly promote the process of individuation, in their own time, in their own way!

Regina Nohra

Director-President of IMHEP / Pedagogue, Clinical Psychologist-Hypnotherapist

Reg. MEC nº 54.858 / CRP 05/22916

Human Development Center - Regina Nohra

Support: IMHEP - Milton H. Erickson Institute of Petrópolis

Affiliated with The Milton H. Erickson Foundation, Inc., Phoenix, Arizona, US


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