I am having a bit of a problem with my Unconscious Mind. I am realizing that I don’t have one! “Where did you put it?”, you may ask. “Did it go into the washing machine along with that floppy red hat you like to wear?”

As you probably know the term “Unconscious Mind” simply refers to things going on in our mind which we are not aware of. It refers to mental activity we are not conscious of. The problem with this is that names of things are very important. What we call somethings really matters. Calling it the “Unconscious Mind” makes it sound like that part of our mind is not conscious.

There is a lot of evidence to suggest that our Unconscious Mind is more conscious than our Conscious Mind – at least about some things. You have probably heard about subliminal advertising or subliminal mind programming where words are flashed up on a screen and the so called Unconscious Mind responds to the words whereas the Conscious Mind is not even aware of them. If someone throws a tennis ball towards you a lot of the process of you catching it would be due to the skill and experience stored in your Unconscious Mind. You let it take over and do the job, because your Conscious Mind could not manage it.

This means that in some ways our ‘Unconscious’ Mind has a far better capacity to relate to some elements of the external world than our ‘Conscious’ Mind. Does it not then seem rather foolish – or even arrogant – to refer to this part of our mind as ‘Unconscious’?

It is a bit like the time when people believed that the universe revolved around the Earth. This looks rather silly now. Yet we are doing something similar with how we have named the ‘Unconscious’ Mind. We are using terminology where everything revolves around the ‘Conscious’ mind – when some of the time it is not even all that conscious.

What do we call it instead? The very least we can do is refer to what we currently call the Unconscious Mind as the Parallel Mind. Using the terms Conscious Mind and Parallel Mind gets a bit closer to what is really going on within us, grants the other part or our mind due respect and more accurately describes the relationship between them.

William Martin

With the helpful assistance of my Parallel Mind (previously known as Unconscious Mind).