On Freud's Encounter with Brentano
ByFranz Kaltenbeck
Pages 11

It is perhaps more helpful to view the Freud-Brentano relationship as an encounter, rather than viewing it in terms of influence or as a debt-even though psychoanalysts have only Sigmund Freud's account on which to base our interpretation. Freud the student glowingly extolled his professor of metaphysics: At the end of the first semester, Freud and his friend Paneth addressed a letter to Brentano which, unfortunately, is lost. In the following passage, Freud writes openly about the dilemma with which Brentano confronted him: In his letter dated 11th April, 1875, Freud raised the question of whether the law of causality required the existence of God, and alluded to Kant's refutation of the proofs of the existence of God. In the course of these lectures Freud was introduced to the philosophies of Heraclitus and Empedocles, which would later resonate throughout Beyond the Pleasure Principle.