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Death
Engrave this Quote Death is an unsurpassable limit of human existence...We discover the relationship which is the basis for all feelings of reverance, fear, awe, wonder, sorrow, and deference in the face of something greater and more powerful...Only such a being-unto-death can guarantee the precondition that the Dasein be able to free itself from its absorption in, its submission and surrender of itself to the things and relationships of everyday living and to return to itself.
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-Medard Boss
Dreams
Engrave this Quote Even interpretations based on depth-psychological dream theories often meet with some success; this despite the fact that their assumptions are purely speculative, while conclusions drawn from those assumptions, such as the posited relationship between latent and manifest dream contents, have no basis in fact.
Experience teaches, by the way, that patients who assume a observer's stance while dreaming, distancing themselves from active participation with others, require especially stubborn, persistent therapists.
Positive declarations of what something means tend to force the therapist into the role of authority figure, at the same time thrusting the patient into subordinate, infantile behavior.
Both Freud's original depth-psychological dream theory and all others that have imitated it in defining dreams as attempts at self-deception inevitably end up in a series of logical impasses...
Notwithstanding the immense expenditure of theoretical labor in past decades, today - three-quarters of a century later - critical opinion is increasingly eroding depth-psychological theories of dream interpretation. The most skeptical of these critics come from the ranks of the analysts themselves.
Because the natural scientific approach from which all depth-psychological dream theories spring is gradually relinquishing its absolute hold on the human imagination, in the future more and more patients will refuse to pass blindly over the inconsistencies hidden in traditional dream theories. Increasingly, they will defend themselves against depth-psychological dream interpretation...
The dream reinterpretations posited by depth-psychological theories are not just theoretically untenable; they also prohibit the therapist from gaining the understanding of the dreaming he needs if he is to help the patient.
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-Medard Boss, I dreamt last night ..., 1977
Emotions
Engrave this Quote The prevailing attunement is at any given time the condition of our openness for perceiving and dealing with what we encounter; the pitch at which our existence is vibrating. What we call moods, feelings, affects, emotions, and states are the concrete modes in which the possibilities for being open are fulfilled. They are at the same time the modes in which this perceptive openness can be narrowed, distorted, or closed off.
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-Medard Boss
Mankind, Man
Engrave this Quote We declare that only man exists. This is not to say that material, inorganic nature and nonhuman beings--animals and plants--are in any sense unreal, insubstantial, or illusory beccause they do not so exist. We merely state that the reality of these nonhuman realms differs from that of human existence, whose primary characteristic is Dasein (literally being-the-there)...Man as man is present...in a manner wholly different from...inanimate things.
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-Medard Boss, Existential Foundations of Medicine and Psychology (xxix)
Perception
Engrave this Quote If man did not exist as a world-spanning receptive realm of perception, if he were not engaged in this capacity, nothing at all could exist. 'Being,' in its traditional usage, means 'presence' and 'persistence.' To achieve presence, and thereby being, an entity requires some sort of open realm in which presence and persistence can take place. Thus an open realm of perception like that of human existence is the one being that makes being possible.
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-Medard Boss
Engrave this Quote When we visualize something, we establish a relationship to the thing itself, not to some mere subjective representation of it inside us.
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-Medard Boss
Reverence
Engrave this Quote Only a human being who is deeply moved by awe and who remains in a state of reverence does not fall prey to the will-to-explore-and-dominate that which shows itself to him, but remains all ears and eyes for the summons of the awe-inspiring phenomena. The awe-inspired person does not want to get hold of or to possess what he reveres, with the aid of his intellectual concepts. He seeks only to get himself into the frame of mind appropriate to the revered object--one which renders him open to its summons and makes his vision clear for its beckonings. He knows: if he manages to comply with the phenomenon that is worthy of his awe so perfectly that he catches sight of its entire truth, he has succeeded also in releasing himself from the chaos of all delusions.
http://www.hermes-press.com/elemental_index_one.htm
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-Medard Boss, A Psychiatrist Discovers India (as cited in an essay by Norman Livergood)
Time
Engrave this Quote A watch can only tell us how much time it is, how much time has passed, or how much time must still pass before something will occur. These statements are related not to time itself but only to its measurement or calculation.
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-Medard Boss
Tradition
Engrave this Quote Whether he is aware of it or not, every human being dwells in tradition and history. Human memory is this constant dwelling in tradition. It constitutes that fundamental human characteristic of historicity.
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-Medard Boss
Understanding
Engrave this Quote The borders of my bodyhood coincide with those of my openness to the world. They are in fact at any given time identical, though they are always changing with the fluid expansion and contraction of my relationships to the world.
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-Medard Boss
Engrave this Quote A new vision and understanding of something demands a new way of talking about it, for the old terminology gets in the way of this effort. Stubbornly entrenched behind the words coined by a particular conceptual orientation are its secrete prejudices. Any attempt to open out an adequately human vista onto the phenomena of undisturbed existence must include a critique of the most important idea of traditional biology, physiology, and psychology.
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-Medard Boss

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