The experience of time in psychoanalysis and analytically oriented psychotherapy
Psihijatrija Danas 18(1): 5-12
To enter time is to enter reality. It also means to learn to withdraw, withstand denial and negation, that are the usual defense-mechanisms of healthy people although much more those of neurotic (and psychotic) ones. The famous Nietzsche's sentence: "Satisfaction tends to eternity" is not only psychoanalytically true but it also introduces us directly into the problem of time and the relation of mature and imature individuals toward it. Every human demand for eternity including the religious one means the negation of time and searching for the "ocean feelings" (emotions) that are experienced in one way by a suckling baby and in the other by a enlightened missionary, for example. However, the emphasis is placed on neurotic and psychotic fixation or regression to the symbiotic state of the unit with the mother in which time does not exist. Maturity, to my mind is a harmonic, even rhythmical change of being-in-time, as a full and active presence in a temporal reality of living, with being-out-of-time. This phenomenon to me is not the flight from time, the negation of time, but it is an allowed and normal rest of time, a creating unit with the primary process, in a dream, in an artistic creation, in a truly experienced love and in an authentical religious experience.