Freud 's Theory Of Instincts And The Individual Psyche

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In Sigmund Freud’s “Civilization and its Discontents”, we are introduced to a new outlook in the way we view our lives due to his analysis of civilization and how it has affected our happiness. Freud uses his theory of instincts in order to explain what encourages us as well as how our behavior is all linked together and is motivated by our instincts. He explains why humans seek happiness and how it is one of the toughest things to achieve. Towards the end of his book he also gives an insight on how the individual psyche which consist of the id, ego, and super-ego leads us to feel guilt and its impact on civilization. Through his theory of instincts and the individual psyche, Freud is able to demonstrate how civilization has set limits to…show more content…
The pleasure principles goal is to avoid pain, which Freud later states it is not always a good thing because the longer things follow the pleasure principle the happiness received begins to decrease and no longer has the same affect. Overall, this makes it harder for individuals to stay happy. Along with the pleasure principle, Freud states there are three main things that also make us unhappy which are our body, the external world, and our relations with others. And out of all these three, the worst comes from our relations with others, we hurt one another more than anything else on earth. Freud states, “happiness … is a problem of the economics of the individual’s libido” libido meaning sexual desires, he demonstrates how an individual’s sexual desires and being able to fulfill them leads them to their happiness. At the same time, Freud’s use of libido can also represent a person’s desires and pleasures as a whole and not limiting itself to sexual pleasure. Libido connects to Freud’s theory of instincts. Freud believes that our instincts influence our behavior, and our behavior is caused by our desires. “Satisfaction of instinct spells happiness for us’ , this implies that if our desires are satisfied, our behavior is better and we will be happy. However, there seems to be a problem when it comes to Freud’s theory of instincts and civilization. Freud states that civilization
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