As anyone who has taken a European history or general philosophy course can attest to, the famous philosopher René Descartes set the stage for using introspection as a measure of mental states. His famous phrase, “I think, therefore I am” supports the idea that humans are only capable of proving their own existence by confirming the presence of a mind. According to the New World Encyclopedia, “Introspection provides a foundation for knowledge of the physical world, and one...
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...lower of Freud, believed instead that the unconscious was divided into two categories, the first being the personal unconscious and the second being the collective unconscious. The personal unconscious, similar to Freud’s unconscious, is largely filled with material either suppressed or forgotten by the conscious mind. The collective conscious is an inherited reservoir of psychic structures and experiences. The collective conscious is shared by the entire human race and can explain phenomena such as innate fears that all or most humans share, such as fear of spiders. Aside from criticisms of Freud’s emphasis on sex, the unconscious mind is largely criticized for simply being a misunderstanding of experiences of which we are unaware. Some critics state that there is no unconscious mind at all. After all, how can humans have concrete thoughts without registering them?
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