Georg Groddeck - The real father of pschyonalysis?
Was it Freud who really invented the psychoanalysis? For long Groddeck believed he himself was its inventor and not the physician from Vienna. - The Book of It
The fact is that that genius called Groddeck already practiced psychoanalysis since 1895. He only learned of Freud's work in 1911. Dismayed, Groddeck felt the frustration of those who research and work quietly and suddenly see their work announced by others: it is like to loose a child to somebody
As Groddeck was a genius and a true genius is stripped of vanity, he started to correspond with Freud, acknowledging he preceded him in psychoanalysis. Groddeck had never patented his numerous findings because he considered a heritage to humankind. His work is so vast that its analysts claim it requires deep study and hard work to be examined, because of the brilliance and richness of its contents. A self-appointed disciple of Freud, which proves his humbleness, Groddeck and Freud exchanged about 80 letters, in which they discussed mainly the issues related to the "It" (the unconscious), according to Groddeck's terminology, which Freud chose to call "Id". The men had some divergences and Fred accused Freud Groddeck of being "a mystic". Freud was panic-worried about the psychic occurrences often experimented by those dedicated to mysticism. Jung had noticed that during the time he and Freud were colleagues and did not agree with Freud as to "mystical and paranormal" phenomena. Groddeck considered the "It" as a broad concept, contrasting with Freud who restricted it. Freud eventually gave reason to Groddeck, conceding he considered the "It" as having "relatively superficial layers", differently from Groddeck, who reached for the abyssal dominions of the unconscious (Es, in German), being this theory the most adequate of the two (Es, in German, or It).
Groddeck called himself a "wild psychoanalyst", and he saw the work of his colleague gaining acceptance and worldwide evidence, while his was kept in the shadows, a solitaire brainchild. In the 60's, the study of Groddeck's works was initiated and it has grown intense lately. It is considered the work of a genius.
Nasamecu (Book: 1913)
NASAMECU: This cabalistic-sounding word is the title of one of Groddeck's books and it means simply "NAtura SAnat, MEdicus Curat" - "Nature heals; the Physician Cures". One of its basis, the most fundamental belief of Groddeck, is that what is known, taught and used today under the name of Body Consciousness is exactly the theory put forth in the book Nasamecu.
Groddeck offers his understanding of what happens to our bones and muscles, the importance of food, he tells about blood circulation, the eyes, all the human body and about what happens with our body when it obeys the "It"(unconscious), and explains why following the "It" orders a person can become "healthy" or "sick".
The Case of the Australian
A few years after publication of Nasamecu, Groddeck received a very interesting and stimulating letter from an unknown Australian. The letter told that his writer was saved from death by the teachings of the book Nasamecu. The Australian was traveling across the countryside when he fell seriously ill. There was no doctor around. However, he learned there was nearby a healer who operated miracles. Once there was no alternative, he wont for the man and got cured. Sometime later, the healer confessed to him having a marvelous book which helped him to perform such cures considered miraculous - NASAMECU.
Who heard about Groddeck in Brasil?
Very few people! However, the, let's say, "formula", the Id concept, Freud owes it to Groddeck or, at least, the phrase "das Es" (the Id), which is nothing but the "It". Groddeck's work is not disseminated in Brazil, not even in the psychology schools across the country. According to some authors, it "may be due to the fact that Groddeck never gave up to the temptation of founding a Groddeckian Society of Psychoanalysis." - Teixeira Coelho.
Freud and Jung became known and recognized because their "societies" and "foundations" published their works and promoted the study of their discoveries. According to Teixeira Coelho, "Freud and Jung needn't that, but their society perpetuated them… However, Groddeck did not accept that 'beatification'." By the evaluation of Teixeira Coelho, one can deduce that Freud's VANITY and AUTHORITARIANISM also had a lot to do with Groddeck being ostracized. So, as he did to Jung (who also rebelled against him), Freud tried to subdue the brilliant Groddeck to his findings, but a GENIUS can never be subdued when he is certain of the truth of his own findings. Freud, in a letter, acknowledged his debt to Groddeck - the Wild Psychoanalyst.
Groddeck was born in 10/13/1866 in Bad Kösen, Germany. His father was the physician Karl Groddeck, whose writings much impressed Nietzche. Karl Groddeck infused his son with an horror to allopathy. Constantly, Georg Groddeck refers in his works to some of his clients being poisoned by medication. His genius was not limited to medicine, for he also appreciated literature and arts, which were accepted by his sensitivity as blessings.
According to Lawrence Durrel: "He refused to accept the division of body and soul into two compartments: for him, these were different modalities of the human being. We make our physical and mental diseases the same way."
Durrel comments on Groddeck's personality"… he abhorred that sterile dust raised around an original man and a new idea. He abhorred the disciples, essays and exegeses and opposed the creation of a "Groddeck Society", like the ones which made familiar to us the works of Freud, Jung and Adler."
Groddeck was a precursor of books on "self-help", so fashionable nowadays. However, he was a genius and many who now write that barrage of books on the subject may have written and copied Groddeck, although without his brilliance.
A little bit of Groddeck (The Book of It)
"May I say that the secondary symptoms of pregnancy - hemorrhages, nausea, toothache - have a symbolic origin?"
Toothache and nausea in pregnancy
The uncomfortable symptoms of pregnancy are the rejection of pregnancy itself and of the fetus.
Groddeck said: "The nausea is caused by a repugnancy of the IT for this thing that was introduced into the organism. The nausea expresses the desire to eliminate that thing and the vomit is an attempt to expel it. Thus, the desire is an outline of abortion. But I want you to observe carefully some curious associations of the IT… the notion that the child embryo penetrates the woman through her mouth, which indicates another symptom of pregnancy: toothache. The IT whispers with the low but, otherwise insistent, voice of the unconscious: do not chew! Pay attention, spit out what you are eating! In fact, it tries to destroy the living poison of fecundation through the toothache. Here emerges again total lack of logic, through which the IT manifests itself constantly under the surface of logical reasoning - the unconscious mistakes the teeth for a child (…) The teeth are the children of the mouth; the mouth is the uterus in which it develops, as the fetus develops inside the mother (…) this symbolism is deeply rooted in man, otherwise he would never had thought of the expressions "vaginal labia", "vulvar labia" [from Latin "labia" = lips]. So, the toothache is the unconscious desire of seeing the child embryo get sick and die (…) From the moment the pregnant woman realizes these devices are virtually useless to attain that unconscious objective and renounces to them, the symptoms disappear."
A successful experience
We have quoted this passage of "The Book of It" because a reader of Groddeck helped a woman who was rejecting her pregnancy to get rid of a inexplicable TOOTHACHE. The reader was a client of the famous Dr. Hamilton Mourão - dental surgeon and a specialist in oral rehabilitation. She told about Groddeck to Dr. Hamilton and his son, Dr. Luiz Hamilton, who looked amazed at each other and then revealed to her they had a patient who fitted Groddeck's approach. They finally had got the cure for her. So, off they went to buy The Book of It in the bookstore at the School of Medicine of UFMG in Belo Horizonte.