When we think of psychotherapy, Sigmund Freud (1856–1939) often comes to mind. One of the most influential figures of the 20th century, he remains also one of its most controversial.
Far from being an outmoded icon of modern psychology’s early historical development, Freud’s doctrines (the “talking cure” in particular) have irrevocably shaped the way human behavior is understood today. Psychoanalysis has waged an assault on traditional conceptions of human nature by eclipsing everything of a transcendent order—even branding religion itself a kind of psychopathology.
The corrosion of religion and spirituality in our human collectivity has left an epistemological and ontological vacuum that has been largely filled by psychoanalysis and its off-shoots, as also the welter of psycho-babel we encounter at every turn. Psychoanalysis, like behavioristic psychology, has not died or disappeared, as is too often assumed—on the contrary, it forms the very substratum upon which all contemporary therapies are formulated. The consequences for Western civilization have been destructive and far-reaching, as this masterful study—nay, dissection and diagnosis—of the disease makes blisteringly clear.
498 pages, Paperback.
Praise for Dismanting Freud:
“In this remarkable work, Samuel Bendeck Sotillos takes us well beyond the familiar image of Sigmund Freud. Calling in part upon primary documents rarely seen, he offers a glimpse of the man: of what or who(!) is driving him. Given the indelible imprint Freud left upon our contemporary, postmodern civilization, this treatise can hardly fail to be of profound interest to everyone still capable of serious, critical thought.”—WOLFGANG SMITH, author of Cosmos and Transcendence
“This book situates Freud’s doctrines in their proper context, perhaps for the first time. With great lucidity, depth—even urgency—its author makes clear that our human destiny can be realized only through freedom in and of the Spirit; whereas, in stark contrast to this, Freud (under the guise of liberating us) trapped us in an unconscious determinism, that is, in the most inferior impulses of our soul. This is a work aimed at no less than restoring our human community to health.”
“Samuel Bendeck Sotillos, informed by a deep understanding of traditional modes of thought and drawing on prodigious research, develops a searching critique of the very foundations of modern psychoanalysis and exposes the ways in which this totalitarian pseudo-science is symptomatic of the profane worldview which is at the root of our contemporary spiritual crisis. This is a penetrating study of wide-ranging significance and the most urgent relevance.”
— HARRY OLDMEADOW, author of The Betrayal of Tradition
“This valuable, timely work lays bare the often dark and pernicious nature of Freudianism, especially insofar as it went beyond the realm of psychoanalysis and morphed into an all-embracing worldview that has greatly abetted the unraveling of the spiritual fabric of today’s world.”
— SEYYED HOSSEIN NASR, author of The Need for a Sacred Science
“Sotillos has garnered a great variety of sources to formulate his critique of Freudianism. His discussion of the scope, the foundation, and the effects of the psychoanalytical movement is very impressive. He illuminates with great insight the deeper meaning and implications of the truths found in different religions of the world. This book will be relevant for those in the ﬁelds of Humanities, for therapists, for those who wish to deepen their understanding about the cultural climate of the modern and postmodern worlds.”
— Journal of Transpersonal Psychology
Samuel Bendeck Sotillos is a practicing psychotherapist who has focused especially on the interface between spirituality and psychology. He is an Advisor to the Institute of Traditional Psychology, a former Board Affiliate of the Association for Humanistic Psychology, and on the Editorial Boards both of the journal Spiritual Psychology and Counseling and the Armonia Journal.