Thus the principle of the conservation of energy physical, not psychicwhich influenced Freud so greatly, is a scientific one because it is falsifiable—the discovery of a physical system in which the total amount of physical energy was not constant would conclusively show it to be false.
Indeed, the war was not only an object of interpretation from the rival standpoints of Freud and Lawrence, it may also have affected the internal development of these writers' views on the question of instinct.
The concept of the unconscious was groundbreaking in that he proposed that awareness existed in layers and that there were thoughts occurring "below the surface. Freud explained how the forgetting of multiple events in our everyday life can be consequences of repression, suppression, denial, displacement, and identification.
This principle states, in effect, that the total amount of energy in any given physical system is always constant, that energy quanta can be changed but not annihilated, and that consequently when energy is moved from one part of the system, it must reappear in another part.
InFreud spent the greater part of a year in Paris, where he was deeply impressed by the work of the French neurologist Jean Charcot who was at that time using hypnotism to treat hysteria and other abnormal mental conditions.
In the Freudian model, the primitive, which may be variously instantiated in archaic cultures, or in contemporary tribal peoples, or in the unconscious, is a pre-civilised self which is always in danger of breaking out.
In his essay on Weltanschauungen he claims that psychoanalysis has no Weltanschauung of its own except in so far as it partakes of a scientific world view.
Reaction formation takes place when someone takes the opposite approach consciously compared to what he wants unconsciously. Freud and Oedipus. When the baby bonds with the mother in a sympathetic circuit while also kicking away into independence, Lawrence locates these different responses within the human body itself.
Denial means that someone will not deliberately admit to the truth. Further, this particular point has taken on an added and even more controversial significance in recent years, with the willingness of some contemporary Freudians to combine the theory of repression with an acceptance of the wide-spread social prevalence of child sexual abuse.
He regarded God as an illusion, based on the infantile need for a powerful father figure.
Just as Lawrence in Women in Love mistakenly criticised Nietzsche as a promoter of worldly power while affirming the essential Nietzschean spirit on his own account, so he mistakenly criticised Freud for attributing everything to the sexual motive while reinventing an essential Freudian understanding in his own terms.