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Throughout recorded history, the dreams' content and purpose were not definitively understood, though topics of scientific speculation were once widely discussed and debated as well as a subject of philosophical and religious interest.
Through time and culture, opinions about a dream meaning have varied and shifted. There were even attempts, both a failure and success, to give or endow a relationship and connection between dream interpretation and dream therapy.
Not until the Austrian neurologist Sigmund Freud, who developed the discipline of psychoanalysis and wrote extensively about dream theories and interpretations, did dream therapy and was putto use as a psychoanalysis tool in the late 19th century and outlined in his book The Interpretation of Dreams in 1900. It was then this time that dream therapy falls under the umbrella of the much bigger process of dream interpretation.
The Difference: Dream Interpretation vs. Dream Therapy
Dream Interpretation is said to involve the process of assigning meaning to dreams while dream therapy is basically a method of deriving or getting or generating meaning from images and elements from dreams in order to gain insight into a patient's psychology.
Dream therapy is said to be a subdivision of dream interpretation and a subdivision of psychoanalysis pioneered by Sigmund Freud in the early twentieth century.
Dream therapy becomes also known as psychoanalytic dream interpretation as it was famously put to use as a psychoanalysis tool by Freud in the late 19th century. On the other hand dream interpretation is also known as dream analysis.
Dream therapy is said to be more subjective, as according to Freud, it uses the process of explaining the meaning of the way the unconscious thoughts and emotions that are processed in the mind during sleep. As a result of distortion and disguise, the dream's real significance is concealed: dreamers are no more capable of recognizing the actual meaning of their dreams than hysterics are able to understand the connection and significance of their neurotic symptoms. The meanings are subject to the interpretation of the dreamer.
In dream interpretation, it also adopts Freud's beliefs but is balanced by Carl Jung's objective model that believes that the scope of dream interpretation was larger, reflecting the richness and complexity of the entire unconscious, both personal and collective. Jung believed the psyche to be a self-regulating organism in which conscious attitudes were likely to be compensated for unconsciously (within the dream) by their opposites. Jung believed that there are archetypes such as the animus, the anima, the shadow and others and they manifested themselves in dreams, as dream symbols or figures.
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