In primary process thinking, according to Freud, the id releases tension produced by the pleasure principle; unacceptable urges are deferred and a mental image of a desired object is substituted for the urge (the image can be expressed in dreams, hallucinations, fantasies or delusions). In this unconscious processing of the id, which uses symbols and metaphor, unfettered gratification of instinctual demands and drives is pursued. Primary process, activated by the drives, serves the pleasure principle and works to actualize psychic energy.
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