Psychoanalytic Theory Critique
I appreciate the contribution of techniques for delving into the unconscious that this theory provides. Proverbs 23:7 (NKJV), describing the impact of the unconscious on behavior, states "as he thinks in his heart, so is he." Jeremiah 17:9 also notes that "the heart is deceitful" and John 5:39, Romans 12:3, 1 Corinthians 8:2 and 10:12, and James 1:26 each describe conditions where the conscious thoughts of man do not necessarily reflect reality. As we deal with clients and in self-analysis, it is important to recognize that there are likely issues that we may not even be aware of that are impacting our personality and behavior and we must strive to discover these issues so they can be addressed.
I disagree with the deterministic aspects of this theory as well as the man-centered focus. It is primarily biological and instinctual and fails to properly take into account the spiritual nature and free will of man. As with any theory that does not begin with a Biblical understanding of human nature, the keys to truly understanding humanity are missed leaving the therapist able to provide only temporary fixes and false hope. In my opinion, it is essential to take into consideration sin issues and the wisdom (or lack thereof) in choices made by the client when determining the source of challenges and unhealthy behavior.
As I develop my personal approach to therapeutic practice, I will likely incorporate the free-association technique and I will probably study the Ego-Defense Mechanisms as they seem reasonable observations of human behavior that do not contradict a Biblical understanding of man. I will probably not incorporate the therapist role as anonymous or detached. I am not convinced of its therapeutic value and it does not suit my personality. I am also unlikely to engage in dream analysis as I am not convinced of its value.