Sublimation or how to go beyond our agressive behavior

From Jacques Besson

Video Interview Transcript

As a psychiatrist, having been trained in psychoanalysis, I have to mention the work on Sigmund Freud about sublimation. The idea is that we have some biological drives like sexual or aggressive. All the work of the civilization, of education, of the maturity of a person is to domesticate these drives and to make them acceptable for yourself and for the others. And he calls this sublimation. Pasteur Pistor was into dispelling Freud and saying, hey why don't you make sublimation with God. And Freud answered that he had never considered not being a priest, that one could conduct the transfer to God.
Let's say to consider that spirituality. It's my own words now that spirituality is a way of sublimation. Personally I mobilize my aggressivity which is pretty strong. I'm a very potentially aggressive person. In my creativity and my libido to seduce people, to fight people, I sublimate it in showing nice ideas, in showing nice research, making big progress with my clinic, with my colleagues, defending my service inside the hospital, fighting for justice, to be a pleasant professor. It is not to seduce girls, but to be a nice professor and to be appreciated. This is sublimation for a psychoanalytical psychiatrist.

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