Dissociation means only and exclusively that contents that must not reach the consciousness level in order to ensure the survival of the organism also don't reach the consciousness level as a narrative. Without a doubt imagination can be a healing process and can be spontaneous rather than planned. Dissociation, on the other hand, is an inherent survival mechanism. Imagination, fantasy, and make-believe are therefore just as much accomplishments of consciousness as are forgetting and suppressing shameful and guilt-ridden memories. When an actor imagines and plays the role of a person with multiple personalities, completely different areas of his brain react to his invoking this imaginary reality than those areas that are activated when a dissociative patient switches or an inner person reacts to an external constellation of stimuli. While the process of imagination allows conscious design and freedom, with dissociation there is absolutely no freedom to design.