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March 9, 1918

Problems of Mysticism and Its Symbolism.

JAMA. 1918;70(10):723. doi:10.1001/jama.1918.02600100061033

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The reason for translating this work, according to Jelliffe, is to show the essential relationships of what is found in the unconscious of present-day mankind to many forms of thinking of the middle ages. We thus arrive at a science that may be called paleopsychology. "Its fossils are the thought-forms throughout the ages, and such a science seeks to show fundamental likenesses behind the more superficial dissimilarities." The parable with which the author introduces his work is taken from a Rosicrucian work of the sixteenth century. This parable the author submits to a psychanalytic interpretation, regarding it as a dream or fairy tale, and endeavoring to interpret what it symbolizes. In this analysis he evidences a vast amount of ingenuity and undoubtedly goes as far in his interpretations as any of the believers in the symbolistic phases of Freud's theories. It is, of course, possible, and this must always be

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