Pastoral Psychology

, Volume 16, Issue 2, pp 41–48 | Cite as

The meaning of money: A psychiatric-psychological evaluation

  • Robert A. Moore


In summary, we have reviewed some psychoanalytic formulations about the symbolic meanings of money, such as its equation with feces, semen, life, and love. Money becomes a sublimated interest so that we may avoid more primitive desires. Nevertheless, it also is an interest upon which is focused guilty feelings for more basic wishes from the past, so that seeking money is both pleasurable and anxiety-provoking. The helper of suffering humanity who demands money for his services is in a particularly conflicted position. As a result, he finds it necessary to develop a rationalization system that concludes that his demand for money is good for the sufferer. While this is true in some circumstances, it is better to face one's basic selfishness and realistic needs for money. The pastoral counselor experiences a different conflict, faced as he is with his need to be altruistic, and his lack of a good system of rationalization as possessed by the psychiatrist.


Rationalization System Cross Cultural Psychology Good System Symbolic Meaning Pastoral Counselor 
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Copyright information

© Pastoral Psychology 1965

Authors and Affiliations

  • Robert A. Moore
    • 1
    • 2
  1. 1.Training Ypsilanti State HospitalUSA
  2. 2.University of Michigan Medical SchoolUSA

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