“The false self is a positive function very important to conceal the true “self”ť, which a person does by submitting to the demands of the environment.”ť By hiding it clearly protects a way that true self-apparently too fragile. The false self is thus a function of adaptation and protection of the true self. What matters is the relationship between the two. This is not the opposition normal / pathological. They are rather the imbalance between the two reports that can induce self and indicate a medical condition. So, when a division is too important to be overtaken, it has developed between the two self, as described by D. W. Winnicott.
In the case of a false self established in a person with a significant intellectual potential, the mind tends to become the seat of the false self. We can observe that brilliant academic achievements are the work of false selves. The suffering of the individual to be difficult to perceive, is nonetheless real. It is even possible to increase to the extent that the academic and social success, with a sense of “false”ť apparent. At some point, inevitable, where tensions (between true and false) becomes too high, so these people return, sooner or later, in a process of self-destruction who will speak, variously, a mixed mode: somatic psychosomatic disorders, self-mutilation, etc. ”¦or merely a psychiatric mode.
Role of the environment is also a factor for the illness experience. In a conference, he further indicated that when the environment is not sufficiently adapted. “The person survives through the mind. The mother carries the power of the baby to think about things, correct, and understand them. If the baby has a good mental disposition, this thought becomes a substitute for personal and adaptation of the mother. As a fact, much intelligence can arise from the environment. There are at least two types of false self, some can not use symbols only slightly and others with great intelligence, a result of overstretch in the brain to compensate for defects too large for the environment. As a result, there are at least two types of intelligence: healthy or pathological.
If a false self organization is set up very early in life, one should keep in mind that his relationship with the true self is likely to evolve in function of the environment of the person concerned and she receives appropriate care or not. Thus, the therapeutic work of D. Winnicott aimed, firstly, to establish contact with the patient’s true self. In another context, that of a health facility, the psychiatrist P. Charazac, based on the work of D. Winnicott, shows that institutional life (in his case for the elderly) may lead to the strengthening of the false self of persons received, according to D. W. Winnicott. Thus, while their health is getting worse, these people, because of their good adaptation (a major characteristic of a false self), are instead seen as wanting good (Charazac P., “On the delayed enhancement of the false self in some elderly, “in Psychoanalysis at University, Paris, No. 67, 1992). As for D. Winnicott, “Creativity in the individual is destroyed by environmental factors occurring late in the growth of the personality.”ť
It should be noted that proposals for true self and false self of Winnicott are not accepted without reservations. The first obstacle for the French at least, take the reference to “self”ť in “self”ť, which is less common in French theory. For Winnicott himself, the difference between “me”ť and “self”ť was not assured, however, he insisted on this distinction, stating that the term “self”ť is directly related to the fact of life.
As a fact, identity is distinct from similarity, similarity and unity. Similarly, we call items possess one or more common characteristics, the more general properties of objects, the closer the similarity comes to an identity. Two objects are considered identical if their quality quite similar, as described in Depression, illness and identity.
However, we should remember that the world is a substantive (material) identity can not be, because the two subjects, no matter how they are similar in quality, yet differ in the number and the space occupied by them, only where the nature of the material rises to the spirituality it is possible identities. Necessary condition for identity ”“ is a unity: where there is no unity, there can be no identity. The material world, divisible to infinity, unity does not possess the unity comes to life, especially with the spiritual life. We’re talking about the identity of the organism in the sense that its common life remains, despite the constant change of the particles forming the body, where there is life, there is a unity, but in the true meaning of the word has no identity, because life is decreasing, and comes only remaining unchanged in the idea.
The same can be said about the personality – the highest manifestation of life and consciousness, and personality we only assumed identity, but in reality it is not, as the very content of the individual is constantly changing. True identity is only possible in thought, correctly formed notion has eternal value, regardless of the conditions of time and space in which it was conceived. Expression of identity of concepts is the logical law of identity, represented by the formula: A = A, the law requires that a properly formed concepts and judgments were all of equal importance.
The search for identity follows the other hand, psychological criteria for the constitution of identity that is enough. Personal identification in the philosophy – is the answer to the question of the identity to itself. The essence of feeling of a person is not completely captured none of the existing theories. Replying to a question about personal identity, contemporary philosophers are increasingly resorting to the theory of relativity, or the assertion of linguistic uncertainty, as stated in The Family and Individual Development.
The issue of personal identity or “I”ť ontology is a matter of philosophy assimilated to the classical metaphysics. This is a discussion that seeks to determine under what conditions a person at a time is the same person at another time, and what in this case is the bearer of this (numerical) identity. The discussion overlaps naturally with the discussion about what identity is even, and mind-body problem. The question has been treated very early and very extensively in the Eastern philosophical tradition. Within the modern classical philosophy is considered to be two basic positions in the field: “The reductionist and the non-reductionist”ť.
In the reductionist tradition viewed the self or soul (few philosophers distinguish) is not as existing in itself, but solely as a result of other, mostly physical, reasons. A standard explanation for our experience of having one I could here be fully tangible, but extremely complex processes in the brain. Arguments against the existence of the self are here often for language philosophical nature: The concept of “I”ť would refer to something that I just the only one should know the importance of, as described in The experience of illness. Here it refers to the fact that it is a contradiction that the public language could express something as strictly private. Why the word “I”ť has no significance beyond: “This person who is expressing the word”ť where, with “person”ť means a public service – physical – individual.”ť
All in all, the understanding of the self and identity is important. A lot depends on the person’s outlook, vision and perception. Illness experience influences the activities, sometimes it disrupts it or subverts it, because it can not pass invisible for the future. Many things and decisions are being changes in case of illness experience and re-evaluation of life is also present. For any person it is important to be sincere with himself and to understand true values.
Depression, illness and identity. 2011. 1 June 2011.
D. W. Winnicott, The Family and Individual Development (London: Tavistock, 1965).
D. W. Winnicott, Clinical Notes on Disorders of Childhood (London: Heinemann, 1931).
D. W. Winnicott, Playing and Reality (Penguin 1971).
G. Kopf, Beyond Personal Identity: Dogen, Nishida, and a Phenomenology of No-Self. Routledge, 2001.
Hall, Manly P. Self Unfoldment by Disciplines of Realization. Los Angeles, California: The Philosophical Research Society, Inc. 1942. page 115 “On rare occasions we glimpse for an instant the tremendous implication of the Self, and we become aware that the personality is indeed merely a shadow of the real.”ť
Illness experience. 2010. 1 June 2011.
Kohut, H. (1971). The Analysis of the Self. New York: International Universities Press
Mark Siderits, Personal Identity and Buddhist Philosophy. Ashgate Publishing, Ltd., 2003. 231 pages.
Shaun Gallagher, Jonathan Shear, Models of the Self. Imprint Academic, 1999. 524 pages.
Sedikides, C. & Spencer, S. J. (Eds.) (2007). The Self. New York: Psychology Press