Wednesday, July 15, 2009

The Moving Wall

This is not exactly a wall. I was standing by the cash dispenser in East Sheen and suddenly a lorry blocked my view. This is its side - for all the world like a Jackson Pollock painting. OK, I did use a Photoshop filter called "Poster Edges", but I felt it was in keeping with the subject's paint-stained exterior. So suddenly I was separated from the road by this mobile wall. Walls are all about separation and guard against evil influences from the other side, but the down side is that we are then restricted in some way. If we examine the ego from this standpoint, we can see that there is some benefit in taking notice of the walls, erected by ourselves, that protect us from knowledge and possible action. The ego defences as seen by Anna Freud, ward off unpleasure and anxiety but exercise control over impulses and instinctive urges. They both repel and contain. Sometimes psychoanalytic work can breach these walls which provide "resistance" to analytic work. When the client dreams or is on the couch, some of the ego functions are suspended. The wall, like the one above, can move away to reveal unconscious motivations.