Are there any age-sensitive considerations to your theories on these proverbs? I have an 11 y o boy to whom I gave your three proverbs and he responded with highly concrete explanations for them. He tests superior on Weschler and has S/S of anxiety, but is absent the kind of psychosis you allude to when adult schizophrenic patients reply the same way. Otto seems just as stuck as this litte boy. I suspect he would want to offer "the right" explanation - one which he feels the clinician expects him to give - so he can maintain the control he seeks. He's a man who wonders, "What difference does it make if moss grows on a rolling stone, it rolls anyway.", and, "I would never live in a glass house because then anyone could see inside.", and, "I spilt milk once when I was a boy and my father got really mad, so people shouldn't play with their milk." Otto may very well be fixated ( or "stuck" for those affect theorists who need to know it that way) at a latency point of sexuality, hence the quick onset of castration fears expressed in his impotency caused by a rival to his narcissistic control over his wife, rather than an anger over the incident. Last, somewhat relating to your experimenting with concocted proverbs, I ask all my patients at some point during the information stage to offer proverbs they remember, their favorites or ones, or those their mothers/grand~ used to say. I'm always amazed at how quickly these will penetrate the presentation self and its defenses, and unveil deeply-held views about themselves which fuel many negative cognitions and self-defeating behaviors.