Three Way Rivaltries – Id, Ego, and Super-ego


In the psychological model given by Sigmund Freud, the Id, the Ego and the Super-ego, or, in German, das Es (the “It”), das Ich (the “I”) and das Über-Ich (the upper “I”) are the three substructures that compose the whole of mental activity. The Id is the “dark, inaccessible part of our personality” that we inherit at birth and which acts according to physical pleasure and satisfaction. It is also described as “chaos” and “a cauldron full of seething excitation.” The Ego, on the other hand, is the part that acts according to reason, common sense, and other principles influenced by the external world. In this sense, the Ego is fundamentally opposed to the Id.
The Ego, however, also serves as the mediator between the demands of both the Id and the remaining third, the Super-ego, which is the part acting according to ideals, goals and the aim for perfection. The Super-ego therefore is also fundamentally opposed to the Id, and it is the part responsible for the feelings of guilt that follow pleasure. We can think of this rivalry as an ever-present struggle going on in each of our minds all day every day. It should be stated, though, that this is only one of three different schools of thought, which together form a three-way rivalry on their own.


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